Fate/Apocrypha (フェイト/アポクリファ, Feito/Apokurifa?) is a light novel written by Yuuichirou Higashide with illustrations by Ototsugu Konoe and supervised by Kinoko Nasu who planned and wrote majority of the story elements for Apocrypha characters and the plot. The first volume was released on December 29, 2012 at Comiket 83. The second volume was released on August 16, 2013. The third volume was released on December 29, 2013. The fourth volume was released on May 30, 2014. The fifth and final volume was released on December 30, 2014.
The setting of Fate/Apocrypha is a parallel world to Fate/stay night where the Greater Grail was removed from Fuyuki after the Third Holy Grail War disappeared for many years. Around the 2000s, around the same time as the Fifth Holy Grail War would have happened, the group that plundered the Grail, Yggdmillennia, openly declares their secession from the Mage's Association and that they are in possession of the Grail. The Association dispatches fifty magi to retrieve it, but all but one are instantly slaughtered by Lancer of Black. The one remaining manages to activate the reserve system of the Greater Grail, allowing for the summoning of fourteen Servants in total.
This marks the start of the Great Holy Grail War in Trifas, featuring two different factions, the Black Faction (黒の陣営, Kuro no Jinei?), whose members are part of Yggdramillennia, and the Red Faction (赤の陣営, Aka no Jinei?), whose members were sent by the Mage's Association with the exception of one from the Church. The Grail itself also summons Ruler to act as a mediator of the Holy Grail War.
- Sieg is the main protagonist of Fate/Apocrypha series. He is a Homunculus created by Gordes Musik Yggdmillennia. Gordes created a way to manipulate the Mana Pathway system so that he, along with six others, are providing magical energy for all of the Servants.
- Ruler is the Ruler-class Servant.
The Black Faction is made up of members of Yggdmillennia and the independent Reika Rikudou who ended up with Assassin's contract. While Darnic Prestone Yggdmillennia is the head of the group, he defers to Lancer of Black for running the Holy Grail War. The vanguard of their combat force consists of many homunculi crafted by the family and golems crafted by Caster of Black. While not strong enough to face Servants directly, they can stall them and provide support for the Black's Servants. Both Lancer and Archer spend time with the other Yggdmillennia magi to prepare countermeasures against attacking Servants. Darnic still has a number of family members spread throughout the Association and Church, allowing for them to rely necessary information on the opposing Masters.
Their homunculi are born through alchemy as fully matured man-made organisms born to fight, destroy, and die. Their combat homunculi wield gigantic halberds and are capable of producing complex magical rituals to cause massive destruction. They posses various corporeal defects that when compensated for limits their lifespan to two months. They are meant to be expendable, willingly sent in large numbers to hinder Servants. They have diluted emotions that make them capable of charging into battle, but they are still wary of Servants. They have the strength to harm Servants, but pose little threat. Working together with the golems, even over one hundred pose little threat to Berserker of Red. Those made to supply energy for Servants are kept with their consciousness undeveloped, and sealed in magical energy supply tanks with reinforced glass. Preserved in a green jade solution to act more efficiently with a breathing apparatus, they take in mana from the atmosphere to provide to the Servants. They are also occasionally taken for Caster's usage as materials for his golems.
The Masters of their side have a significant advantage over those of the Red Faction in that they do not have to provide the cost of their Servant's upkeep and battle usage. Devised by Gordes Musik Yggdmillennia, he has managed to use his alchemical knowledge along with Yggdmillennia's homunculi to manipulate the system to allow for the division of the magical energy pathways supplying the Servants, bypassing the Masters and leading to the homunculi. While the Masters provide the minimum amount necessary to allow the Servants to exist in the world as a backup measure, the Servants do not use any of the Master's energy for utilizing their Noble Phantasms, automatic recovery, or in their own usage of magecraft. This allows the Masters to save their own energy for battle and for Servants to be less selective in using Noble Phantasms, differing from those who have to supply their Servant and manage their battle expenditures.
- Darnic Prestone Yggdmillennia
- Black Lancer's Master and the leader of the Yggdmillennia group. He is almost a century old despite looking in his 20s. He plundered the Holy Grail from the Third Holy Grail War of Fuyuki.
- Gordes Musik Yggdmillennia
- He summoned Saber of Black with a bloodstained leaf of a Sacred Fig tree as a catalyst.
- Fiore Forvedge Yggdmillennia
- A girl assumed to be Darnic's successor. She summoned Archer of Black using an ancient arrow as a catalyst.
- Celenike Icecolle Yggdmillennia
- She summoned Rider of Black with a glass bottle which had a liquid stain left on it as a catalyst.
- Roche Frain Yggdmillennia
- He is thirteen years old, and already famous in the field of 'Doll Engineering'. Respectfully refers to the Caster of Black he has summoned as 'Sensei'; their relationship is close to that of a teacher and student. Spends all his time building golems in a workshop in the city for the Holy Grail War.
- Caules Forvedge Yggdmillennia
- Fiore's little brother. He is immature and childish for his age. He summoned Berserker of Black, with the blueprints of the 'Ideal Human' as a catalyst.
- Reika Rikudou
- She's a prostitute who lived with Sagara Hyouma until he used her as a sacrifice to summon the Assassin of Black, who saved her life and killed Sagara.
- Saber of Black
- Siegfried, the Dragon-Blooded Knight.
- Archer of Black
- Lancer of Black
- Vlad III, the Lord Impaler
- Rider of Black
- Astolfo, the Twelfth Paladin of Charlemagne.
- Caster of Black
- Solomon ibn Gabirol
- Berserker of Black
- Frankenstein, Frankenstein's Monster
- Assassin of Black
- Jack the Ripper, Legendary Serial Killer
The Red Faction consists of people selected by the Clock Tower specifically for the purpose of retrieving the Greater Grail and stopping Yggdmillennia's defection. They decide to choose outside professionals and some from the Clock Tower as well. Those from the great families cannot be chosen, as it would require over three months of politics like succession and the safekeeping of Magic Crests before a selection can even be confirmed. Bram Nuada-Re Sophia-Ri decides upon the catalysts, while Rocco Belfaban and Lord El-Melloi II handle the participants. They heavily restrict travel to Romania for magi to prevent the unlikely scenario of Command Spells manifesting on a third-rate magus.
They seek one Master from the Church in order to have their involvement prove the legitimacy of their cause. Although they do not need an impartial overseer like the Fuyuki conflicts due to it being a struggle between two opposing forces of magi, it would be a problem if they were to instead back the Black Faction. They wish to proclaim themselves as the only legitimate thaumaturgical organization even if it means having a Master as the overseer.
Should they emerge victorious, they plan to take the Greater Grail for safekeeping. Belfaban admits that such a thing would likely be difficult due to the survivor being faced with something that can lead to the Root, so the result will be up to them. They can attempt a wish, or even destroy everything to prevent others from making one themselves. Kairi Sisigou believes that Belfaban will prepare a retrieval team to quickly move in once the war ends, but plans to get around them to make his own wish.
- Kairi Sisigou
- A freelance Necromancer. He summoned Saber of Red with a splinter of the Round Table. He notes that the selected members are world renowned magi that are known as monsters specialized in combat. They remove the opposition without mercy, and he can account for their skills, having worked with all of them with the exception of Sembren.
- Shirou Kotomine
- He was sent by the Church as a supervisor and also he is the Master of Assassin of Red.
After arriving, the other five Masters become entranced through unknown means by Shirou, who acts as their "intermediary" on their behalf. Their Servants are summoned in Shirou's presence and lead to believe that their Masters simply wish to remain hidden, while the Masters sit in a set-up reminiscent of a throne room behind a thin curtain. They spend their time sharing stories in peace, only dealing with the status of the war when Shirou reports to them. Kneeling reverently, he feeds them false details of victory over five of the Red Faction Servants while attempting to convince them to relinquish control to him. While they consider it, they feel it is too dangerous to give up control at the moment. As their common sense has mostly collapsed, they eventually concede to the idea after another attempt.
Along with Sisigou, each is said to be a veteran magi among the elites of the elites of the Clock Tower. Darnic Prestone Yggdmillennia believe only he and Fiore Forvedge Yggdmillennia among the Black Masters would stand any chance at opposing them directly in battle.
- Pentel brothers
- Two brothers of the Pentel family known as the Gum Brothers (結合した双子, Ketsugō Shita Futago?)
- Feend vor Sembren
- First-class instructor of the Clock Tower.
- Saber of Red
- Mordred, The Knight of Treachery.
- Archer of Red
- Atalanta, the Chaste Huntress.
- Lancer of Red
- Karna, Son of the Sun God.
- Rider of Red
- Caster of Red
- Shakespeare, the Playwright.
- Berserker of Red
- Spartacus, the Gladiator .
- Assassin of Red
- Semiramis, Wise Queen of Assyria.
- Lord El-Melloi II
- Lord El-Melloi II is one of the principal people in preparing for the Holy Grail War. He dislikes being referred to as "Lord El-Melloi" because it is grating to hear it spoken without the "II."
- Rocco Belfaban
- Rocco Belfaban is the head of the Department of Summoning in the Mage's Association, and one of the principal people in preparing for the Holy Grail War. He personally hires Kairi Sisigou, and although he tries to pass it off as a forgery, reluctantly parts with the his juvenile hydra as part of the payment.
- Bram Nuada-Re Sophia-Ri
- Bram Nuada-De Sophia-Ri is the brother of Sola-Ui Nuada-Re Sophia-Ri and the successor of the head of the Department of Evocation. He is confident in his ability to acquire powerful catalysts in a short time.
- Sagara Hyouma
- A magus who lived with Reika in the original pilot of the series. He is the original Master of the Jack the Ripper. He summoned her using Jack the Ripper's knives as the catalyst and Reika as a sacrifice to make the summoning more effective. He's killed by the Black Assassin shortly after he summons her.
- A servant of the Archer class, he and Saint George are later removed from the finished product in order to make way for the new Archer servant of the Black faction.
- Musashibo Benkei
- A servant of the Lancer class, he and Kintoki were removed from the finished product in order to make way for Red Saber and Black Caster.
- Saint George
- A servant of the Rider class, alongside with David, he's removed later for the new Servants.
- Sakata Kintoki
- Originally a servant of the Berserker class, he and Benkei were removed from the finished story in favor of Red Saber and Black Caster.
The first volume was released December 29, 2012, and the fifth and final volume was released on December 30, 2014.
Originally introduced as a canceled project for an online MMO game, various details and character designs were collected in Fate/complete material IV Extra material. TYPE-MOON and an unnamed video game developer were developing this game, however, the project was discontinued right at the planning stages.
The original gameplay would have involved the players acting as Masters, and fighting with each other's Servants. Nasu wanted the online game to have a world with a complete story, despite being an online game. While the overall story would change depending upon the Servants' relationship with the Masters, the story would conclude with Ruler activating her ultimate Noble Phantasm that she had been stubbornly withholding, thus creating a world with a complete story despite its nature as an online game.
It was announced in November 2011 that a new project was for the concept would be made in the form a light novel series. It was to be written by Yuichiro Higashide, the writer of Propeller company, and he later confirmed on his Twitter that he was writing Fate/Apocrypha in novel format with illustrations by Ototsugu Konoe.
He released a story penned as the first chapter, focusing on Jack the Ripper (which he designed for the original MMO game) and her Master, Reika Rikudou, in TYPE-MOON Ace 7 on December 15, 2011. While the story elements of Reika and Jack still exist in the novel version, the story itself has no relation to the plot of the novels. He released a preview of the novel in TYPE-MOON Ace 8, where it is shown that Musashibo Benkei and Sakata Kintoki have not been included within the story.
Originally it was planned that the story would end in four books, however Higashide confirmed that the novel would extend to five books.
The Servants were designed and drawn by a variety of different people.
- TYPE MOON (Siegfried) (Semiramis)
- Kinoko Nasu (Karna) (Joan of Arc) (Mordred) (Avicebron) (Chiron) (Achilles) (Amakusa Shirou Tokisada)
- Gen Urobuchi (Vlad III) (Spartacus)
- Myougaya Jinroku (Musashibo Benkei) (Atalanta)
- Meteo Hoshizora (David) (Astolfo) (Frankenstein)
- Kiyomune Miwa (Saint George)
- Shoji Gatoh (Shakespeare)
- Yuichiro Higashide (Jack the Ripper)
- Jin Haganeya (Sakata Kintoki)
- KN (Siegfried)
- pako (Karna)
- Hirotaka Maeda (Vlad III)
- Katsuya Terada (Musashibo Benkei) (Spartacus)
- Ginka (David)
- Genji Asai (Atalanta)
- Higashiguchi Chuuou (Saint George)
- Ototsugu Konoe (Astolfo)
- Chinatsu Kurahana (Shakespeare)
- Taketo Sanada (Jack the Ripper)
- Shidzuki Morii (Semiramis)
- Takeshi Okazaki (Frankenstein)
- Raita Honjou (Sakata Kintoki)
- Takashi Takeuchi (Joan of Arc)
An anime adaptation of Fate/Apocrypha, animated by A-1 Pictures, will start airing July 1, 2017 on TV. The opening theme "The Song of a Hero's Fate" (英雄 運命の詩, Eiyū Unmei no Uta?), will be performed by EGOIST and the ending theme "Désir", by Garnidelia.
 Fate/complete material IV: Extra material - Fate/Apocrypha - Truth of Fate/Apocrypha, p.342
Truth of Fate/Apocrypha
Nasu: To summarise, there is a conspiracy in the finale of the story that intends to use the Holy Grail War framework for evil. As the Counter Force, the Servant Joan of Arc wishes to safeguard the framework of the Holy Grail War. Other Servants wish to protect their respective Master, but Joan wishes to protect the Holy Grail War. Although the development of the story may change depending on the Servant’s relationship with the Master, ultimately the story concludes with Joan activating her ultimate Noble Phantasm which she stubbornly withheld. The goal here is to create a world with a complete story, despite being an online game.
- ↑ New Fate/Apocrypha Project to Be Launched by Type-Moon. Anime News Network (2011-11-04). Retrieved on 2012-07-19.
- ↑ Higashide's Twitter (Japanese). Twitter (2011-12-02). Retrieved on 2012-07-19.
- ↑ Higashide's blog (Japanese) (December 3, 2011). Retrieved on July 19, 2012.
- ↑ Higashide's Twitter
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 Fate/Apocrypha official website