|“||I know now... that this was the Master of the Valley.||”|
An evil, mysterious being who resides in a high tower in the middle of the impregnable Nest, the Master of the Valley serves as the main antagonist and final boss in The Last Guardian. With control over an army of Armored Knights and many Trico-beasts, the Master rules over its domain and beyond.
The Master embodies pure evil and seems to be a stationary orb of blackness covered in green, rune-like markings that resemble the Boy's tattoos. Around the Master's main form is a cage of some kind of metal, and around that is a shield of some kind of dark energy that repels those who come too close.
The Master of the Valley is able to broadcast its control via an antenna-like apparatus atop the Citadel, but does not seem to have any audible manner of speaking.
No one is sure where the Master came from, or even what it is, but given how long "the chosen" (human children who are abducted) have been disappearing, one can assume the Master has at least been around for a long time. In charge of the Nest, the Master sends forth its Armored Tricos to kidnap human children to be brought back, and the Armored Knights capture the few that try to escape within the Nest. Once the children are brought to it, they are given over to the Master and consumed to sustain its immortality.
However, a lightning storm upsets the Master's plan, breaking its control over one of the beasts], who teams up with the Boy. The Knights only slow the two down as they make their way to the Citadel: a massive, white tower in the middle of the Nest where the Master is hidden.
The Master is never seen until very near the end of the game when the Boy and Trico get to the top of the Citadel and discover the Master, and it calls in a large flock of Armored Tricos to deal with the threat. When one of the beasts attacks the Boy, Trico rushes to defend him. The valiant beast, however, is overwhelmed, pinned down, and its tail is severed. Luckily, the tail is accidentally thrown into the Master's chamber. Even severed, the tail can still fire lightning, and the Boy uses the Mirror to destroy the Master once and for all. The hold over the Armored Tricos broken; they become disoriented and start falling from the sky and tower as the sun begins to set over the Nest, the evil rule of many years finally broken.
The Master has only ever been witnessed by the Boy, and the Chosen have been disappearing for possibly centuries. No one remembers when these events started. It is unknown what the Master of the Valley truly is. Theories are that it's a god, an alien, an evil spirit, or maybe even a form of ancient artificial intelligence powering itself off of human essence. The resident of the Citadel may not even be the Master itself, but just a figurehead or extension of a being not shown in-game.
Given that the Master has no tangible form and the Knights are hollow, "haunted" suits of armor, the Knights may not be individual entities but rather extensions of the Master. This is plausible considering the Knights seem to have a hivemind or rather are all parts of the Master.
Powers and abilities
- Immortality: The Master has existed for many years, possibly as long as humans have existed in the world. However, this immortality is fueled by the consumption of human children brought from beyond the Nest. These children, "the Chosen," have been many, and the cycle was finally broken by the Boy.
- Control: The Master has a large army of hollow suits of armor called Armored Knights at its command, as well as countless winged beasts called Armored Tricos. The Knights can overwhelm enemies in numbers while a single Trico can defeat an army on its own. Ironically, it took one of the Master's own minions to defeat it forever.
- Shield: The Master projects a shield of dark energy around itself to protect it from physical damage. If the boy approaches, it will knock back and stun the boy. However, this shield rapidly shrinks when the light of the Mirror touches it and provides little protection from Trico's lightning attack.