Last night, it was announced that Kentaro Miura, creator of the dark fantasy manga Berserk, passed away two weeks ago. The manga has influenced many works across all media, from anime, to film, and, of course, to video games. On that latter point, I do feel inspired by the players of Final Fantasy XIV who, last night following the news of Miura’s passing, banded together to pay their final respects to the famed creator of Berserk.
Players began sharing pictures and video of the memorial late last night on social media channels. Twitter user localhyurzen posted a short clip of them running along a line of Dark Knight class players, appropriately hoisting giant swords on their shoulders. The choice of character class wasn’t random. Berserk starred the tragic figure of Guts, also known as the Black Swordsman, who wore dark armor and carried a massive sword called the Dragon Slayer. The “armored guy with a big sword” trope can trace its roots to Berserk, and the Final Fantasy XIV class can be seen as a nod toward Miura’s work.
Late into the night, servers from all across the game had players joining in. Lines of Dark Knights stretched beyond the game’s render distance. Twitter user PhoenonX shared a couple pictures from the Midgardsormr server of Dark Knights lining both sides of a cobblestone street with small campfires at their feet.
Update: The numbers are only increasing, this community's insane and I love it pic.twitter.com/e5MVV1qfkz
— Phoenon (@PhoenonX) May 20, 2021
Farewell to a legend
Kentaro Miura passed away from an acute aortic dissection on May 6 at 54 years of age. News of his passing was shared by Young Animal Magazine’s editorial department late last night. Young Animal has published Berserk in Japan since its creation in 1989, spanning 357 chapters and 40 volumes.
Berserk was a highly influential story. You can see a lot of its DNA in games like Demon’s Souls, Dark Souls, and Dragon’s Dogma. One wonders what weapons characters like Could Strife would wield without Miura. It’s heartbreaking to know that his legendary story will never be finished. However, it’s comforting to see so many celebrating Miura’s life and legacy. No doubt Berserk will continue to influence fans and games for many years to come.