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Zoanthropes are humans with the ability to transform into beasts. They are similar to werewolves, but there is a wide variety to what type of animal individual Zoanthropes can become.

In the Bloody Roar series, the majority of Zoanthropes are primarily mammals and feline. Whether or not a feline alter-ego is the dominant type is uncertain; the games do not go farther into the background of Zoanthropes outside of the main characters in-game. Zoanthropes seem to be a natural occurrence however as many of the characters seem to be born with the ability. It also appears the ability can be passed on through a family bloodline as evident by Yugo gaining his abilities from his father who was a natural Zoanthrope.

However, it is a common theme in the games that a Zoanthrope transformation can be forced by experimentation. Alice is an example of a Zoanthrope experiment that resulted in success. Experiments conducted on Stun made him a Zoanthrope, but the result was an unstable and deformed body. Uriko was a victim of too many experiments, and therefore has an altered, lesser beast form instead of her original Chimera form.

It is also suggested in Bloody Roar 4 that Zoanthrope abilities can be passed from a Zoanthrope to a human, though this has only been proven in regards to the Unborn. Xion stabbed Nagi and she became the Spurious. The games never expand upon the idea of a bite or a scratch from a Zoanthrope mutating humans into beasts.

The Trigger[]

In the Bloody Roar mythology, the origin of the Zoanthrope was due to Gaia, the Earth itself, who helped the humanity to overcome her physical weakness by incorporating in their gene a "trigger".

Between the 70's and the 80's, a scientist conducted unique research in the field of gene therapy. Based on the legends of mythological beasts such as werewolves, she speculated that these humans, with the capacity of transforming themselves into animals, were victims of a genetic disease. Despite interesting development into her research, she was soon the target of mockery and she mysteriously disappeared before her research made it into the spotlight. 

It was the Pharmaceutical Research Division of the Tylon Corporation who, later, discovered the "trigger code" in the human genome. Once activated, the trigger awakes traits and capacities of other animal races buried in the human being. The activation gives them a strength and agility surpassing the typical individual and an intermediary physical form between the human and an animal. This discovery was kept secret by Tylon and the project was supervised by their Weapons Development Division.

The Bloody Roar mythology stipulates, then, that with the trigger being discovered and forced by humans, Gaia chose to regulate the genetic evolution of humanity by activating the trigger in various men and women, resulting in the appearance of Zoanthropes all around the world.[1]

Etymology[]

Zoanthrope could come from the term "Zoanthropy", a mental disorder in which one believes oneself to be an animal.

"zoo" comes from the Greek word "zỗ̩on" which means "animal" and "-anthrope" come from the Greek word "ánthrôpos" which means "be human"

We can establish the link with the word "lycanthrope" (lukanthrōpos - lúkos (loup) / ánthrôpos) which means werewolf.

Citation[]

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