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Charade is a villain of the Soul Calibur video game series. He is a demonic being born from the eye of the demonic sword Soul Edge and is technically a part of it.
Lacking any personal weapons or fighting style, he reconstitutes himself to mimicking other characters in the beginning of each battle. He also made an appearance in Namco X Capcom as an unplayable villain who uses Sophitia's fighting style.
Charade appears as a humanoid bony creature entirely composed of what appears to be a composite of rock and glowing magma. His overall design is rather surreal and assymetrical with none of his parts matching as the shell-like formation of his somewhat skeletal structure seems random. Though these parts can freely be detached, they are all controlled and brought together by a singular yellow eye covered in a red flesh-like design which appears to be Soul Edge's very core. In certain missions, Charade has displayed the ability to function without all of his parts, sometimes using only his legs or simply flying around as the eye itself.
Charade is the form of a man who is weary from war-torn lands and dreaming of adventure. He finds the legends of Soul Edge, and begins to find its fragments. He is eventually murdered by bandits who had heard a rumor circulating in the cities of a man overly-protective of his possessions. Still grasping the fragments, his corpse is thrown into a river. The blood from the hands forms around the fragments due to the man's tenacity to protect his precious fragments. This being seeks out to find more shards, so it can devour them and become whole. He eventually becomes part of the Soul Edge. Charade is able to scan minds of warriors it confronts, and then creates weapons out of its body to accommodate the fighting style it imitates. When the Soul Embrace was formed, Charade's power appeared to have weakened in response to Soul Edge's dormant state.
In Soulcalibur IV, Nightmare summons the remaining fragments of Soul Edge to Ostrheinsburg Castle to become whole. Among them are the second Soul Edge created by Cervantes and fragments that have become half-living creatures, one of which might have been Charade.
It neither knew the reason nor cared why. But it had to return, and when they found one another, it was like finding oneself. They melted together and formed one sword, then quietly closed its eye and slept, unknown to the world. It sleeps even to this day, awaiting the next hand to grasp its hilt.
Charade in Soulcalibur II is the "random character." At the beginning of each battle, he scans the minds of opposing warriors, and then creates weapons out of his body to accommodate the fighting style that he imitates. However, unlike his predecessors, Edge Master and Inferno, Charade gains no attack increase for mimicking any character. In Weapon Master, Charade has an alternate, unplayable form where the entire upper half of his body, including his eye is gone and uses Taki's style, but only utilizes kicks. High and mid horizontal attacks will miss him most of the time, so the player must rely on low hitting and vertical attacks to make contact.
In Soulcalibur III, Charade is an unplayable character and does away with his mimicry in favor of using the Wave Sword style along with a few unique attacks of his own, then switching to Grieve Edges once his first form is defeated. Most notable of all is the usage of his eye in which he fires a thin, concentrated beam of energy that can sweep the stage in horizontal and vertical angles. He also has a third form where he is reduced to his eye which floats about and uses only laser attacks but are more powerful in this phase. Because of his size, it is difficult, if not impossible to corner him as he will pass through most attacks.
- Charade never imitates Necrid, nor any guest character (Link, Heihachi, and Spawn), nor any Bonus character (Berserker, Assassin, and Lizardman).
- In Soulcalibur III, Charade appears in Astaroth, Talim, Mitsurugi and Voldo's "Prepare to Defend Yourself" battle after defeating Ivy in the fourth round, the player battles Charade 3 times, 1st battle, Charade will use the Wave Sword discipline, 2nd battle, Charade is only his legs and eye and will use the Grieve Edge discipline, 3rd and final battle, only his eye is left and his only move is a red beam.
- In Soulcalibur II, Charade is a completely mute character. The only sound it can make is with the eye in its torso, which sounds like a heart beating. However in Soulcalibur III, it sounds like Inferno.
- The fate of Charade is left uncertain, as it is not given any storyline in Soulcalibur III, and it is not mentioned in anyone else's profiles - not even Cassandra's, casting doubt that Charade's Destined Battle ever took place.
- Sometime around the events of Soulcalibur V, Ivy observed the creation of larva-like creatures born from Soul Edge called Nauplius. Her observations found that they're similar to Charade.
- Charade's official biography states that the man who had collected the shardes of Soul Edge heard about Soul Edge, but very little information at an inn. It is possible that the person who told him was the person who is quoted in the manual for SoulBlade.