- For the skill of Kinesis, see Transcendence.
Transcendents are powerful beings that wield control over the three fundamental aspects of the universe: light, life, and time. The most notable Transcendent is the recurring character, the Black Mage. The Transcendents play an important role in the plot of MapleStory, but most of the plot lay unrevealed and incomplete.
History of the Transcendents
In the beginning, there were 365 creations, 365 gods dwelt inside, following 365 different laws. However, this disorder created mass chaos. To maintain order, all the worlds were reborn again under the laws of Light, Life and Time, and the other gods were either weakened or went extinct.
There was one god that maintained everything, known as the Primordial God. He created godlike beings known as the Overseers, who in turn created three Transcendents for all the worlds, with each world receiving each a Transcendent of Life, Light, and Time.
Transcendents are meant to maintain the balance of their respective domain in order to maintain balance for the world. According to Fenelle, the each Transcendent is a representative of the Overseer that created them. Transcendents are not all created equally, as some are created immortal, such as Rhinne and Aeona, whereas others are mortal but reincarnate, such as the Black Mage and Gerand Darmoor.
In the event that a world loses one of its Transcendents, a new replacement will be chosen - though the circumstances could be less than ideal. For instance, Rhinne created a successor when she foresaw that the Black Mage would steal her power, but her child was split into two beings, Alpha and Beta, with both of them sharing the power of the Transcendent of Time after their awakening.
If a world loses all of its Transcendents, it will seek out Transcendents of other worlds and merge with that world in order to stabilize itself. An example of this is when Maple World began merging with Grandis when all three of its Transcendents were sealed away. Should the Transcendents reappear soon after disappearing, the world merge would cease. However, in the case of Maple World, centuries had passed before the Transcendents began to reappear, and the inertia of the world merge means that the fusion of Maple World and Grandis is inevitable.
Though it is unknown whether this applies to all Transcendents, the former Transcendent of Light of Grandis, Aeona, was able to hear a "beautiful yet cold" voice, marking her as the chosen Transcendent of Light. These voices also appeared to compel her to destroy seven races in Grandis with her powers, making it seem as though she had no choice in the matter. In addition, the White Mage was also compelled to create a perfect world by an unknown voice in his head. Upon his realization that the ultimate light did not exist, the White Mage told the voice: "I reject the fate you give me", causing him to awaken with the power of darkness as the Black Mage. The source of the voices is unknown, though it could potentially be the voice of an Overseer. If so, it may be that the Transcendents are merely physical linkages for the Overseers to exact their will upon the multiverse, and that the Transcendents themselves are imprisoned to their destinies by a higher power.
- Transcendent of Time: The Transcendent of Time has control over all the spacetime of their world. They have the ability to slow, reverse, speed, and even stop time for a particular area in their world. Additionally, they have the power to create pocket dimensions frozen in time, such as when the Black Mage used the stolen powers of Rhinne to seal away the kingdom of Kritias, or when he created Mirror World to trap Rhinne's successor. Additionally, the Transcendent of Time has the power to see and alter the destiny of anything and anyone within their world except themselves. Rhinne was able to foresee that the Black Mage would attempt to steal her powers, but was unable to do anything to change her fate. However, she was able to create a successor that would be able to inherit her power before the Black Mage could get his hands on the power of time. Thus, although the Black Mage stole her powers, her child was eventually able to reclaim her stolen powers and awaken as the next Transcendent of Time.
- Transcendent of Life: The powers of the Transcendent of Life are largely unknown. Alicia, the World Tree, appeared to have the power to give sentience to inanimate things, such as when she created the Tower of Oz. She also had the power to bring life to dead places, such as when she restored the scarred lands of Maple World after Damien stole her powers to destroy life on Maple World. However, such an act appears to border on the limits of the Transcendent of Life's power, as Alicia needed to scatter her essence across the world in order to perform such a feat. On the flip side, the Transcendent of Life can also absorb the vitality of the life force around themselves in order to boost their strength, as seen by Damien after stealing Alicia's powers. Gerand Darmoor, the Transcendent of Life on Grandis, has the power to save people from otherwise-fatal injuries, as seen by Magnus surviving Kaiser's final attack that decimated the entire army of Specters that invaded Helisium. Much like Alicia, it appears that there may be a limitation on the kind of injury that a Transcendent of Life can heal, as Darmoor sent Magnus through the Dimensional Gate in order to receive healing and power from the Black Mage.
- Transcendent of Light: According to the Executors, an ancient race from Grandis, light and darkness are merely metaphors that describe the true powers of the Transcendent of Light - the powers of creation and destruction, respectively. Unlike the other two Transcendents, the Transcendent of Light has two vessels to hold the power of light and darkness each, as was the case with the twin sisters, Aeona and Tana, of Grandis. Because Aeona could hear a "beautiful yet cold" voice, she was chosen as the awakened Transcendent of Light, while Tana was considered a spare. In the Temple of Light, Tana read that an awakened Transcendent of Light may only possess one of the two powers of creation and destruction, as the other power must be held by the other vessel. In the case of Tana and Aeona, Tana held the power of creation while Aeona held the power of destruction. It is unknown who the other vessel of the Transcendent of Light of Maple World is, or whether they even exist. One possibility for this missing vessel could be Luminous, who was created just as the Black Mage awoke as the Transcendent of Light. His mastery over light magic could mean that he holds the other half of the power that the Black Mage does not possess. Another possibility is that the White Mage from Other World is the other vessel for the power of light. Some evidence for this is that Maple World and Other World were originally one before they were separated. The White Mage of Other World explains to Kinesis that his current incarnation was not his first, suggesting that one of his previous incarnations could have been separated from their other half when the two worlds split apart. Additionally, the White Mage of Other World looks much like the White Mage from Maple World, albeit slightly more modern. In Grandis, Tana and Aeona appeared identical to each other, but with a reversed color palette, perhaps discrediting this theory. The White Mage also tells Kinesis that the reason for his existence is "to break down barriers", perhaps meaning that the White Mage does not hold the power of light, but rather the power of darkness.
- Light/Creation: The White Mage once had mastery over light magic, as does Luminous, who was created from the light cast aside by the White Mage after his fall. The power of light magic allowed them to perform powerful feats of magic, such as crafting barriers, casting protective wards, and using potently offensive and defensive spells. However, even their power paled in comparison to Tana, who could use light magic to its highest potential, allowing her to manipulate the Erdas - the building blocks of reality. Her very proximity to the Erdas in the Arcane River reshaped them into figures from her memories. These creations were exact replicas, holding the thoughts and memories of whom they turned into. Her influence was so strong that even the will of the Erdas, in the form of the Flying Fish, was transformed into Jean, the boy who helped Tana escape from Kritias, and was unable to resume proper form long after Tana had left Morass. The Black Mage, after taking Tana's power for himself, is currently preparing for what may be the most powerful usage of light magic in history - to create an entirely new world in his image.
- Darkness/Destruction: The Black Mage holds complete mastery over the power of dark magic, allowing him to perform incredible feats of sheer destruction across Maple World. He can easily create powerful creatures of darkness called Omens and can also corrupt monsters across Maple World in order to make them stronger and more dangerous. His signature use of dark magic is to create black chains that can be used both offensively and for magical rituals, such as when he stole Tana's powers in Esfera. In addition, Aeona the 1st demonstrated that the power of the Transcendent of Light was enough to bring entire races to the point of complete extinction
Relationship Between Transcendents
All three Transcendents of a world share a special bond with each other, in which each of them hold a desire to steal the other two Transcendents' powers. For the most part, the Transcendents are able to restrain themselves, as Rhinne and Alicia were described as "content in their roles".
It is possible for a Transcendent to have their powers stolen, either by another Transcendent or by the Transcendence Stone. There are certain side effects that come along with the latter case. According to Kaiser, the Transcendents cannot use each other's powers without harming themselves in the process. The exact consequence of doing so is unknown, but the resulting damage appears to be substantial enough that Gerand Darmoor needed to recover for many years after using Chronica's powers. In addition, using another Transcendent's powers causes a rip in the fabric of spacetime, resulting in the creation of a Dimensional Gate that leads to other dimensions. When Darmoor used Chronica's powers, several Dimensional Gates were opened, including one in Pantheon that led to Maple World. The Black Mage's use of Rhinne's powers also resulted in a Dimensional Gate being opened to Grandis, though it did not appear until after he was released from his seal, since the stolen powers of time were locked away with him for all those centuries. It is unknown whether the misuse of any of the three Transcendents' powers resultes in the warp in spacetime, or whether it is simple because the stolen power in both of cases happened to belong to the Transcendent of Time.
It is clear that one of the Black Mage's goals is to merge both Maple World and Grandis, so that he can be the ruler of both dimensions. This is the reason why he attacked Rhinne, trapped her successor in the Mirror World, allowed himself to be sealed by the Heroes, and had Damien acquire the Transcendence Stone to bind Alicia's powers to it. In the last case, Alicia's power was split across the Maple World to restore its vitality after the events of Heroes of Maple. This was confirmed in Act 4 of Heroes of Maple, where Hilla says to the Black Mage: "O Great One. Everything continues according to plan. The Transcendent of Time is divided and weak, and the Transcendent of Life was scattered across the world. What are your new orders?"
In the Arcane River storyline and 5th job advancement quests, it was revealed that the Arcane River was created by the Black Mage as a result of merging the two dimensions, and thus many map objects from both Maple World and Grandis can be seen throughout the Vanishing Journey.
Transcendents of Maple World
Transcendent of Life: Alicia (Current)
- Main article: World Tree
Alicia, also known as the World Tree, is an immortal Transcendent and the source of life of Maple World. After the Black Mage tried to steal her powers, she hid herself in Root Abyss where she was recuperating to return to her true form. Damien, one of the Black Mage's Commanders, eventually discovered Root Abyss and summoned Von Bon, Pierre, Crimson Queen, and Vellum to keep her sealed, but they were all defeated by the Maple Alliance, freeing the World Tree. In the false future created by Lucid, Cygnus sought power by trying to locate the World Tree, but ended up falling into the Black Mage's trap. Alicia was kidnapped by Damien and had her powers stolen. After the Heroes stopped Damien, she released her physical form in order to undo the damage wrought by Damien and his army of demons. Though she still exists as the Transcendent of Life, her physical form will take centuries to reform. In her absence, the Black Mage created the Arcane River with the power of the Erdas, which once flowed through the World Tree under Alicia's protection.
Transcendent of Life: Damien
- Main article: Damien
After Arkarium destroyed his home and killed his mother, Damien became a new Commander of the Black Mage, just as his brother renounced his loyalties. The Black Mage gave Damien the task of capturing the World Tree, who had taken refuge in Root Abyss. Although the Alliance managed to rescue her, Damien infiltrated Ereve and killed the divine beast, Shinsoo, in order to kidnap Alicia. He used the power of the Transcendence Stone in order to steal her power, making him the new Transcendent of Life. However, his rule was short-lived, as the Heroes united once again to stop him. Damien was finally killed by his brother at his own request, wanting to be free of the vengeance that consumed his soul.
Transcendent of Light: Black Mage (Current)
- Main article: Black Mage
The Black Mage is the main antagonist of Maple World. Born in Edelstein, the young man who became renowed as the White Mage traveled to Magatia to research magic. He founded Aurora, an organization that researches and protects the light, in order to make his vision of a perfect world into a reality. When his research failed, he cast aside his light and became the Black Mage, the awakened Transcendent of Light. He is a mortal Transcendent, one who has reincarnated through the history of Maple World.
Transcendent of Time: Zero (Current)
- Main article: Zero
Rhinne, before being captured by the Black Mage, created a child who would later be known as Zero. However, the Black Mage was aware of Rhinne's plan and Will, one of the Black Mage's commanders, split the child into two beings and sealed them off in the Mirror World, then kept them separate to prevent them from regaining their full power. Unfortunately for the Black Mage, the two halves eventually reunited and awoke together as the Transcendent of Time.
Transcendent of Time: Rhinne
- Main article: Rhinne
It is said that Maple World is a dream of hers. The Black Mage stole her powers, but she was able to create a child and successor, Zero, when she foresaw her fate. Though she was an immortal Transcendent, and the Goddess of Time, she now resides in the form of a child in Mirror World, as her power now belongs to her children, Alpha and Beta.
Unknown Transcendent: Cygnus (Current)
- Main article: Cygnus
When Damien killed Shinsoo to kidnap Alicia, who was residing within the divine beast's jewel, Cygnus partially awoke as a Transcendent due to the shock of seeing Shinsoo dead. Her newfound power allowed her to resurrect Shinsoo from the dead and grant new power to the Cygnus Knights. Shinsoo later revealed that that she was protecting Cygnus so that her descendent could become the fourth Transcendent. However, the fact that Cygnus has only partially awoken caused Shinsoo to leave Ereve in order to search for a way to either revert Cygnus or complete her awakening to stop her from hurting herself and others. It is unknown whether Cygnus has awakened as one of the three main Transcendents, or whether she is a Transcendent of a new domain. Shinsoo has stated that Maple World is not ready for a fourth Transcendent, making it possible that Cygnus' powers are neither over light, life, or time, but rather a new, fourth domain.
Transcendents of Grandis
Unlike in Maple World, the Transcendents take active roles in the world of Grandis, with Darmoor declaring war on other races, and Aeona the 1st killing seven races in Grandis as was her self-described "job".
Transcendent of Life: Gerand Darmoor (Current)
- Main article: Gerand Darmoor
Gerand Darmoor has a plan to conquer the whole of Grandis for himself. Similar to the Black Mage, Darmoor robbed the powers of the Transcendent of Time. With Magnus as his right-hand man, Darmoor conquered Aboris and gave Heliseum for Magnus to reign.
Transcendent of Light: Black Mage (Current)
- Main article: Black Mage
Hoping to destroy the world and create it once again in his own image, the Black Mage ordered Will to capture Tana and conduct a ritual that would grant him her powers of creation. The ritual succeeded, and the Black Mage gained the powers of the Transcendent of Light of Grandis, making him a Transcendent of two worlds. With the power of both light and darkness, the Black Mage now seeks to destroy the world and create a new one in his own image.
Transcendent of Light: Aeona the 2nd
- Main article: Aeona
Aeona the 2nd, also known as Tana, is the twin sister of Aeona the 1st. While both had the powers of a Transcendent, only one could have title, and the name of, Aeona. Aeona had the power of darkness and death, while Tana had the power of light and creation. Aeona was picked as the Transcendent as she could hear a 'voice', and Tana was left to be just a 'half'. Soon, Aeona goes mad with power, and Tana supposedly kills her sister, and takes her power, and thus her name, as a result. Now shackled by the very same 'voice' her sister heard. Tana refuses the Aeona name and leaves Grandis. She soon finds her way to the Kritias where she gets involved in an explosion.
Transcendent of Light: Aeona the 1st
- Main article: Aeona the 1st
Aeona the 1st, was the twin sister of Tana. Aeona was chosen as the Transcendent of Light because she could hear the "voices". Soon, Aeona is driven insane by the voices, who ordered her to kill at least seven races in Grandis as part of her responsibilities as the Transcendent of Light. Believing that her sister did not deserve her power anymore, Tana slayed her with her own hands and became the next Transcendent of Light.
Transcendent of Time: Chronica (Current)
- Main article: Chronica
Not much is known about Chronica. Gerand Darmoor confronted Chronica at their sanctuary, insisting that they help him wipe out all life. Chronica refused, and so Darmoor sealed them away and stole their power, just as the Black Mage did with Rhinne. According to Fenelle, Chronica is listed as both male and female, this could be a translation error.
Transcendents of Bean World
Unknown Transcendent: Pink Bean (Current)
- Main article: Pink Bean
Little is known about Pink Bean. He comes from Bean World, a separate dimension from Maple World. Pink Bean was known to have been a past Transcendent, existing before Rhinne became the Transcendent of Time. In Maple World, a man named Kirston attempted to summon the Black Mage with a mirror from the Temple of Time. While Kirston did not summon the right Transcendent, he nevertheless did summon one. It is unknown whether Pink Bean was a previous Transcendent from Maple World, Transcendent of Time or otherwise, or whether he always existed in Bean World. Nevertheless, Pink Bean is a powerful force to be reckoned with, and he possesses many unique powers.