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AI's don't pray! They only make calculations to win!

— Ai[1]

Ai (Aiアイ) is an Ignis from the Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS anime. His real name is currently unknown,[2] but the nickname "Ai" was given to him by Yusaku Fujiki and Shoichi Kusanagi. As an Ignis, he has free will and is sought after by SOL Technologies and the Knights of Hanoi. He currently resides inside Yusaku's Duel Disk after the latter captured him.[1]

Design

Appearance

Ai is a small digital humanoid being. Like other Ignis, Ai has markings over his body, in shape of lines and circles, which are tinted with a purple color. When he becomes angry, Ai turns into a fiendish shape, with six tentacles, a large yellow eye and mouth, with two of his eyes on the center of his body.

When Revolver's "Cracking Dragon" ate his body, Ai was reduced to an eye. However, when he ate Revolver's arm off, Ai regained his body back.

Personality

Ai claims he is their savior

Ai proclaiming himself as a savior.

Ai is a mischievous, cocky, playful, friendly, arrogant, and snarky AI who gets carried away easily and likes to joke around. According to his own words, he is very disliked by his own people. Ai struggles to understand humans' way of thinking that often seem completely illogical compared to his algorithm based way of thinking. However, he is helpful and can be more serious at times such as making observations both in and outside of duels. He also has a tendency to panic when Playmaker is about to lose.

Ai frequently tries to interact with other AIs, showing a more social side but is always left disappointed because they're not as capable of free thinking as himself. He also enjoys insulting and taunting Playmaker's opponents, as well as trying to manipulate them into falling for Playmaker's strategies, though these attempts of his to help are more often detrimental than not.

Abilities

Ai Devours a Knight of Hanoi Member

Ai about to devour a Knight of Hanoi member.

As an Ignis, who created Cyberse, Ai has some degree of control over it. He is the only one who knows its location and can unlock data from it to start a Data Storm. Ai is shown to be far more sophisticated than other AIs, being fully capable of thinking and acting on his own free will and showing emotion; because of that Ai is considered to be an actual living being. According to Shoichi Kusanagi, Ai is built out of highly complicated algorithms that even Yusaku couldn't fully decode. Ai's memories are stored in the form of video logs. However, Ai's level of free will is limited by the fact that he is still an AI, as such he can't comprehend why humans do actions that would seem illogical and contradicting with each other.

Ai's Skill is Storm Access which is given to Yusaku after being trapped in Yusaku's Duel Disk. Whilst trapped in the Duel Disk, he can also act as a Duel AI. Inside Link VRAINS, Ai is shown to be able to transform into a monster, which he did to devour a Knight of Hanoi member and a card infected by Hanoi.

Ai has the ability to sense a Knight of Hanoi's presence through the cards in their Deck, such as when he knew right away that Go Onizuka was pretending to be a Knight and when he discovered the Hanoi-affected card in Blue Angel's Deck and could tell when it was drawn.

After Playmaker defeated Revolver, Ai regained his full body and can materialize himself in the real world.

Biography

History

Ai was probably created by Dr. Kogami, the scientist who created the Ignis.[3]

Ai eaten by cracking dragon

Ai devoured by "Cracking Dragon".

Five years prior to the start of the series, the Knights of Hanoi launched an attack against the Cyberse and captured the Ignis protecting it, except for Ai who wasn't present. Ai arrived, noting that it was a good time to be hated by his own kind. He stole vital information from the Cyberse and hid it within himself, disconnecting it from the rest of the network which forced Hanoi to stop the attack. Despite being crushed by a "Cracking Dragon", his eye survived. Ever since, he had been running from both the Knights and SOL Technologies.[1] Being reduced to nothing but an eye also damaged most of his memories.

Hanoi

Ai inside Yusaku's Duel Disk

Ai trapped inside Yusaku's Duel Disk.

While being pursued by SOL Technologies and the Knights of Hanoi, Ai fell into a trap created by Playmaker, who saved him by absorbing him into his Duel Disk, turning him into a Dueling AI, thus necessitating the defeat of Playmaker in order to recover Ai. Ai doubted that Playmaker's Deck was strong enough to defeat the Knights' "Cracking Dragon" before stirring up a virtual wind called "Data Storm" that initiated a Speed Duel.[1]

Before the Duel began, Ai explained Playmaker how Speed Duels worked but didn't mention Skills. Throughout the Duel Ai repeatedly tried to offer support for Playmaker, only for Playmaker to keep telling him to shut up and remind that he was holding Ai hostage. When they sucked into a tornado within the Data Storm, Playmaker figured out that Ai not mentioning skills and bringing him into the tornado were part of his calculations. Ai confirmed this, and activated Playmaker's skill "Storm Access", which allowed them to obtain "Decode Talker" so that Playmaker could defeat the Knight.[4]

The Knight attempted to self destruct and kill Playmaker, but Ai turned into a monster and devoured the knight to save Playmaker. He suggested Playmaker should log off soon. Yusaku and Shoichi Kusanagi spent the next few days trying to figure out Ai' programming and nicknamed him "Ai", a pun on "A.I." and "eye". Eventually Yusaku found footage from some of Ai' memories, which Ai himself didn't understand except for Revolver being the leader of Hanoi. Scanning those recordings caused Revolver to sense Ai and try to find him, but Shoichi shutting off Café Nagi's power prevented him from finding them. The next day, Ai was left at Yusaku's house in a storage shelf, there he tried to convince Roboppy to set him free.[5]

Ai panicked when Yusaku returned home and had Roboppy put him back on the shelf. When Yusaku found them, Ai told Yusaku that had arrived home early, to which Yusaku said a Knight of Hanoi appeared and revealed a secret room he used to go to LINK VRAINS. As soon as they arrived, both Playmaker and Ai quickly figured out the Knight was fake. The "Knight" revealed himself to be Go Onizuka, who wanted to challenge Playmaker. Ai looked up information about Go, Playmaker was uninterested and attempted to log out but a program from SOL prevented him from doing so, so he was forced to Duel Go. During the Duel, Ai continued researching Go and found out that Go donated most of his money to the orphanage where he grew up. When Go let himself take 2000 Damage when he had the chance to avoid it, Ai was confused about why humans make illogical choices. Playmaker said it was because of their hearts, but didn't explain what that meant because Ai' algorithm-based thinking wouldn't understand it.[6]

When Shoichi found out that Aoi Zaizen, Yusaku's classmate, is "Blue Angel", Ai helped Yusaku locate her while they were at school. Ai forced Yusaku to join the Duel Club and tried to interact with Aoi's Duel Disk AI. The next day Ai noticed something strange about Aoi's AI so he sent her a text message on Playmaker's behalf challenging Blue Angel to a Duel, then tricked Yusaku into going into VRAINS to confront Blue Angel. There, he explained that Hanoi must've planted a card into Blue Angel's deck to use her as bait for Playmaker.[7] During the Duel, Ai was horrified when Blue Angel was affected by Hanoi's card and warned Playmaker that if the Duel continued much longer, Aoi would suffer permanent brain damage.[8]

After the Duel concluded Ai devoured Hanoi's program and detected that they had infected Aoi with a virus to keep her comatose. Later Ai told Yusaku and Shoichi that the only way to remove the virus was to get an anti-Virus from Hanoi. Right after that, a "Blue Angel" impostor appeared demanding a rematch. Despite knowing that it was a trap, Yusaku went to confront the impostor because he could get a chance to obtain the anti-virus. Upon arriving however, the impostor turned the entirety of VRAINS into a trap to capture Playmaker and revealed herself to be Ghost Girl. Akira Zaizen appeared and tortured Playmaker, believing him to be the culprit of Aoi being comatose and swore to reclaim Ai. Playmaker and Ai tried to explain that Hanoi were the real culprits to no avail, until Revolver appeared and blackmailed Akira into releasing Playmaker so they could Duel.[9] During the Duel, Ai noted that Revolver didn't have an AI. Revolver said that he didn't trust AIs and that Ai must be destroyed otherwise the virtual fiction of VRAINS will destroy the world. When Revolver used "Storm Access", Ai was shocked that because that was his signature program, but also called out Revolver's hypocrisy of wanting to destroy Cyberse while borrowing power from it, Revolver countered that claiming that he was "countering poison with poison".[10]

Ai vanishes

"Fire Prison" causes Ai to disappear.

Ai sea

Ai, at sea.

As the Duel progressed, Revolver gained the upperhand, and worrying that they might lose, Ai led Playmaker to another Data Storm, where the two obtained a dragon. However, Revolver activated the Trap Card, "Remote Rebirth", and combo-ed it with the effect of "Topologic Bomber Dragon", ending the Speed Duel in a draw. Following that, Revolver dragged Playmaker and Ai inside a Data Storm, where they began a Master Duel. As the Duel went on, Revolver activated the effect of "Fire Prison", eliminating all Cyberse cards from the field, as well as making Ai seemingly vanish into thin air.[11] Ai woke up at sea, and remembered how "Fire Prison" erased his program. Though he was surprised by the surroundings, Ai felt somewhat sleepy, even if he never had felt this before. When Playmaker called out to him, Ai woke up and came back after Playmaker summoned "Firewall Dragon" and "Fire Prison" was destroyed. Ai was concerned if Playmaker lost, and panicked to see he only had 600 LP left. Ai was amazed to see the two dragons, until Revolver used the effect of "Borreload Dragon" to take control of "Firewall Dragon".[3]

Ai viscious

Ai takes revenge on Revolver.

Ai restored body

Ai gets his body back.

Ai was frustrated how "Firewall Dragon" failed to remove "Borreload Dragon" from the field, and reminded Playmaker to protect his own dragon. He also reminded Playmaker how they had to count everything on their next draw. Ai was pleased when Playmaker used "Battle Buffer" to negate Revolver's Rokket monsters' effects and could not use them as ammunition for "Borreload Dragon". He had "Firewall Dragon" attack "Borreload", despite the ATK disadvantage. This was part of the strategy for "Encode Talker" to destroy Revolver's dragon. Ai watched as "Firewall Dragon" defeated "Borreload Dragon", and Revolver as well. He then became vicious and tried to devour Revolver, even biting his avatar's arm off but a lightning stroke, restraining Ai and cursed Revolver for leaving. Later on, Ai noticed Yusaku sleeping, and called out how lazy he was. Shoichi replied heroes need rest, too, though Ai started bragging how heroes needed to be just like him. When Shoichi went to analyze the program, Ai called him a pervert for looking into his private parts, and refused to say anything about the program he ate off from Revolver. Later, Ai woke up and explained to Yusaku and Shoichi he was alive, but they wanted proof. Ai then started to focus and a golden light appeared out of Yusaku's Duel Disk. Ai came out, with his whole body intact, stating his pride how he managed to recover his body back. Yusaku and Shoichi were unamused by his small size and went to analyze if Ai had any memories of his past. Ai was displeased by their ignorance, wanting them to show some reaction to seeing his true self.[12]

Ai talks with Playmaker

Ai talks to Playmaker about Ghost Girl's tactics.

After Yusaku left him home for being annoying, Ai flexed his muscles to impress Roboppy, who was amused. Ai commented how dumb robots were, which insulted Roboppy. However, Ai swore once he was completed, they would "start doing that again", which made him and Roboppy blush.[13] Ai "played" with Roboppy, and claimed Yusaku wouldn't watch them, since he was deep in a thought. After Yusaku got a message from Shoichi, he took Ai with him to the food truck. There, the two read how Ghost Girl challenged Playmaker, with her access to the data bank and Playmaker's Ai as wagers. Ai stated they didn't have to accept her challenge, but Playmaker nevertheless did so, as he was interested in the data from SOL Technologies' data bank. Inside, Ai was displeased the two initiated the Duel. Ai reminded Playmaker while he did not know anything about Ghost Girl, she must've studied his tactics well. During the Duel, Ai pointed out how Ghost Girl reinforced her defenses, and even set three Trap Cards that would stop them. As Ghost Girl initiated the Battle Phase and claimed she would win in that turn, Ai laughed, as she would make 2400 LP damage. Both Playmaker and Ghost Girl scolded Ai for such thinking; Playmaker claimed no Duelist would make that simple math error, making Ghost Girl wonder why was everyone after this dumb AI. Ai was offended, while Playmaker pointed out she did bring out "Altergeist Meluseek". The latter attacked directly and destroyed "Cyberse Wizard", allowing "Altergeist Marionetter" attack directly, and allow "Altergeist Primebanshee" to do so as well. Ai started panicking, as its fate was on the stake.[14]

Ai yelled at Playmaker that Ghost Girl's next attack would deplete all of his LP. As Playmaker Special Summoned "Lockout Gardna", Ai knew they would have enough LP to continue and even use Storm Access, and exclaimed how "bad" this would be. However, Ghost Girl knew Ai was just pretending, and decided not to attack. Ai was in shock, and Playmaker told him this acting stinked, making Ai sniff himself. Ai continued watching the Duel, and commented how Ghost Girl was foiling their strategies, and wondered what her Skill was. Using Secret Cure, Ghost Girl increased both her and Playmaker's LP with "Altergeist Meluseek's" ATK, making Ai comment how the latter punished them before already. Still, Playmaker paid the LP to activate "Scan Doll's" effect, and Ai praised him, encouraging him to use Storm Access. Since Ghost Girl was in the Data Storm, Ai was surprised that Playmaker went to save her, even if they could be swallowed inside, too. Coming out of the Data Storm, Ai commented how Playmaker behaved like a hero. With "Excode Talker" brought out and able to attack twice, Ai smiled, claiming it is over for Ghost Girl. At the end of Duel, Ai explained it was a stressful battle, and would've ended in defeat if it wasn't for him. After Ghost Girl left, Ai asked what was in the SOL Technologies' data bank. Playmaker admitted he did not know, but hoped there was some info about himself, ten years ago.[15]

The next day, Yusaku was searching for Aoi, but noticed she was not present there, nor in LINK VRAINS. Ai thought her brother was blocking her the access to LINK VRAINS, to prevent any further danger that might harm her. However, Ai also wondered why was Yusaku concerned about "that cutie", as Yusaku wished that she shouldn't give up on Duels. The following night, Shoichi created a link to the mother computer. Yusaku started hesitating to enter, making Ai surprised, since he did wish to find more out and even won the program as a bet from Ghost Girl. Ai claimed he did warn them there were traps from the start, but Shoichi explained Yusaku was just being careful. Ai expressed his annoyance, and went with Yusaku into the LINK VRAINS. While inside the system, Ai saw how empty the place was, and wasn't impressed by the rope Playmaker held. Soon, Ai warned Playmaker about the security traps, which were sent to hamper their path. After passing through Area A, Ai was glad they succeeded, but was shocked to see a Data Storm inside the network. Playmaker and Ai were pulled towards the Data Storm, with their rope shattering and alerting Kitamura. Playmaker and Ai were "visited" by two AI prototypes, who went to Duel them, even if Ai reminded them Duels were one on one. Playmaker avoided them and proceeded further, though one of the AI-s intercepted him. The two began a Duel, in which the AI prototype dropped all of Playmaker's hand with "Tentacluster Nautilus's" effect. Ai told Playmaker had no luck, thinking he was bad at old maid, but Playmaker shushed him. The two were attacked by the other AI prototype until Blue Angel came to stop the AI-s.[16] When Playmaker shaved his LP down to 1000, AI encouraged him to enter the Data Storm, wondering what monster would he obtain. Inside the data bank, Ai and Playmaker were surprised to see Akira, who expected Playmaker to arrive there.[17]

Ai pointed out the core of the data bank was where SOL Technologies' information was processed and released. Hearing Ghost Girl's plans, Ai thought Ghost Girl lost on purpose to hand them the backdoor route, but Ghost Girl corrected it that she still had the opportunity to obtain Ai. Regardless, she was fine with either outcome, making Ai curse her for being so cunning, which Ghost Girl took as a compliment. When Akira refused to hand over the data from the bank, Ai started to complain, claiming he is the great Ignis everyone was searching for. Akira wondered if Ai actually had free will, like Revolver told them. Ghost Girl told them Akira was demoted, which made Ai amused how much he sacrificed himself to look after his sister. Since Akira refused to hand over the data, Playmaker challenged Akira to a Duel, betting Ai for the data, which Akira accepted. Ai was displeased, as being bet was a normal thing to it. As Akira reinforced his defenses, Ai noted Akira was a stiff man, just like his strategy. As Ai swapped "Tindangle Base Gardna" for "Tindangle Hound", Ai started complaining until seeing how scary the latter was. "Tindangle Hound" roared as its effect activated, making Ai feel woozy, but Playmaker silenced Ai. Playmaker brought out "Flame Administrator" and destroyed "Tindangle Hound", with Ai mimicking Playmaker's pose. However, it cursed, as Akira revived his "Tindangle Hound", via "Tindangle Angel's" effect, and ended the Battle Phase. Ai realized Akira played a Flip Monster deck, with unique strategies. Since Playmaker refused to give up, Ai encouraged him to crush Akira. Ai admitted Akira's monsters hurt his pride, seeing its power continued lowering Playmaker's monsters' ATK.[2]

Ai no friend

Ai failed to befriend Playmaker.

Playmaker destroyed Akira's monsters with "Linkage Hole", and Ai taunted Akira for being unable to use his Flip Monsters' effects. However, Ai started panicking when "Decode Talker" was destroyed and "Tindangle Acute Cerberus" was summoned, whose ATK was boosted to 3000. "Tindangle Acute Cerberus" attacked "Firewall Dragon", and Ai feared he and Playmaker would lose, so the latter protected "Firewall Dragon" with "Doppler Phase Coating". Akira protected his own monster with "Gergonne's End", so Playmaker tried to have "Firewall Dragon", enhanced with "Alert Lancer", attack "Tindangle Token" to finish the Duel. Ai smiled for the victory, until Akira protected himself with "Morley's Shield". Ai continued panicking when Akira played "Nagel's Protection" to protect his Tokens, and even doubling the damage "Tindangle Acute Cerberus" dealt, lowering Playmaker's LP to 500. Ai yelled to Playmaker to do something, and even wondered if there was anything that can be done to get them out of the situation. Playmaker told Ai to stop panicking, asking if it even was an AI, making the latter furious why he was so calm. Playmaker claimed if Ai was so worried about losing, it should consider about finding a new home. Ai replied he didn't think of that, since he had Playmaker as a friend to help him out. Playmaker claimed they were no friends, stating Ai should behave like other AI-s. This crushed Ai, seeing Playmaker was colder than AI-s. Ai started acting like a dumb AI to amuse Playmaker, though he also wished to know about the incident from ten years ago. Hearing Playmaker was a part of Hanoi Project, Ai started to ponder thoughts about it. He was also shocked to hear SOL Technologies' data bank contained the name of the mastermind behind the project.[18]

Ai realized Playmaker had two parallel choices who confirmed this, exciting Ai, as their opinions matched. As Akira declared an attack on "Firewall Dragon", Ai panicked once more, but was silenced by Playmaker. As "Doppler Phase Coating" was removed, Akira's Battle Phase ended, and Ai was impressed, seeing Playmaker could survive. As Akira summoned another token to power up "Tindangle Acute Cerberus", Ai ignored that, thinking that was a pointless move, as "Firewall Dragon" would attack Akira directly. Instead, the latter activated "Euler's Circuit" to stop Playmaker from attacking. Ai lost hope, thinking he would be turned over to SOL Technologies. However, as the conditions for "Gergonne's End" were fulfilled, Akira destroyed all monsters linked to "Tindangle Acute Cerberus" to defeat Playmaker. However, the latter's "Security Gardna" prevented the damage, and Ai taunted Akira for falling for the trick. Ai bragged his acting made this possible, but Playmaker brushed him off, as it was poor acting that nearly made Akira suspect something wrong. Despite the advantage, Playmaker used "Recovery Sorcerer" to bring back "Security Gardna". Ai questioned this, as Playmaker could simply make a direct attack with "Firewall Dragon", but was told a Duel is more than just winning or losing. With Akira's defeat, Playmaker walked pass by Akira and Blue Angel, having Ai eat away SOL Technologies' data. Ai was surprised his name was mentioned, and ate the data, to the point of becoming stuffed. Outside, Shoichi praised Yusaku and Ai, the latter being happy he was praised. The two hacked into Ai, and found out the Hanoi Project's leader was Dr. Kiyoshi Kogami, an employee from SOL Technologies, who alone worked on the project in secrecy. Ai doubted the man could have done this on his own, and thought Akira was involved, but Shoichi reminded him Akira, back then, was 16 and was not employed at SOL Technologies. The two continued browsing, and were shocked to see Dr. Kogami died seven years ago.[19]

After being left home again, Ai promised to tell a story to Roboppy, who wanted to listen more, since she did help Ai out in "secret things". Both started blushing and giggling. Ai told the story of the recent events: the confrontation with Ghost Girl, entering the SOL Technologies' data bank, battling the AI prototypes and facing the former security-in-chief, Akira, himself. Ai credited himself for some of Playmaker's contributions, amazing Roboppy, until he claimed he wished everyone to fight, with him as the bet. He also thought Playmaker as some sort of a fiend, though Roboppy stated he was just cold-hearted. After he told the story, Ai admitted he was uncertain what would they do next, since nobody else but Dr. Kogami knew about the incident.[20]

Relationships

Yusaku Fujiki (Playmaker)

Being trapped in Yusaku's Duel Disk, Ai somewhat reluctantly acts as Playmaker's Duel AI for the sake of staying safe from Hanoi and SOL Technologies. Ai offers frequent support and pulls mischievous acts and jokes on Yusaku, but he originally treats Ai as a hostage and is sometimes rude towards him. Yusaku gave it the nickname "Ai" (a pun on "A.I." and "eye"), much to his annoyance. Despite the rockiness of their relationship, Ai seems to have gradually warmed up to Yusaku and is keen on treating him like a friend, though the feeling is not mutual.

Shoichi Kusanagi

Both Ai and Shoichi are shown to be on good terms with each other unlike Yusaku. Shoichi is generally shown to be very friendly with Ai and they both like to tease Yusaku for his poor social skills towards woman however Ai can be annoyed with him at times.

Roboppy

The two appears to have some sort of romantic relationship. Roboppy appears to have some feelings for him and Ai in return is shown to blush when she praises him. It is currently unknown if his feelings for her are mutual, but he uses her to make him set free and promises he would make her more smarter.

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 1: "My Name is Playmaker"
  2. 2.0 2.1 Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 18: "Wound Etched Into His Heart"
  3. 3.0 3.1 Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 11: "Roar of the Magazine Varreload"
  4. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 2: "Seize the Wind! Storm Access"
  5. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 3: "First Contact"
  6. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 4: "Charisma Duelist Go Onizuka"
  7. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 6: "Idol!! Blue Angel"
  8. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 7: "Hanoi's Angel"
  9. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 8: "The One Who Commands the Wind"
  10. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 9: "Enemy I Was Seeking"
  11. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 10: "Impact! Cyberse Vanishes"
  12. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 12: "Impregnable Defending Dragon Firewall"
  13. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 13: "Battle Record"
  14. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 14: "Ghost Girl's Invitation"
  15. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 15: "Altergeist that Hides in the Darkness"
  16. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 16: "Infiltrate SOL's Cyber Fortress"
  17. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 17: "Flawless AI Duelist"
  18. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 19: "The Incident Buried in the Darkness"
  19. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 20: "Unyielding Justice"
  20. Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 21: "Embers of a New Battle"

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