Based on the hit visual novel, Steins;Gate tells the tale of how Rintaro Okabe, a first year science major, manages to contribute to the invention of time travel with the help of Kurisu Makise, a teenage prodigy, and Daru, his expert hacker. However, little did he know, his experiment would result in World War III, and with the future in shambles. So with a story this drastic, it has its share of unique characters who either want to prevent the war from happening or special interests groups seeking Rintaro’s time machine for their own personal gain. With the recent broadcast of its sequel, 0, the series introduces some fresh faces to provide us some upgrades to this list.
10. Alexis Leskinen
In context to the first series, the villain(s) of Steins;Gate who are after the time travel technology never really had a face to be associated with. That all changes when we see the true form of Alexis Leskinen, Kurisu’s former mentor. Thanks to how he speaks Japanese in very broken accent in a rather ridiculous manner, he comes across as comedic and unassuming, as well as very caring for Rintaro’s well-being. However, by the time the series progresses to its second half, the cast and audience finally see he is a ruthless villain who will do anything to get his hands on the tech, and that includes sacrificing innocent lives. In comparison to Rintaro, Leskinen is a different side of the the mad scientist coin in terms of pursuing his goals for world domination.
9. Moeka Kiryuu
If anyone can be the poster child for phones being unhealthy to a person’s ability to communicate face-to-face, then that would be Moeka Kiryuu, who happens to be a private investigator (and more). Even when she’s next to a person, as opposed to talking to someone directly, she’ll send text messages to communicate. However, her tragic childhood pretty much shows why she is very hesitant to be direct with people. Underneath her quiet personality, she’s willing to play dirty and kill to get the job done. Thanks to Rintaro’s interactions with her through his time travels, he has first hand knowledge of her true skills and recruits her in helping Mayuri and Suzuha travel back to July of 2010. While she has shown to be evil, if you treat her right, she’s a truly valuable ally.
8. Faris Nyannyan
While her real name is Rumiho, she is known only be her work name, Faris. And where does she work at? At one of Akihabara’s famous maid cafes! If you ever want an idea on how the maids at these cafes act, then Faris is a very accurate representation of that. They wear cat ears and love to say nya, a Japanese way of saying meow, which Faris pretty much does even when she’s not working. Thanks to her rich family’s influence (which she conceals from most people), Akihabara gains its modern fame as an otaku paradise. If Rintaro and Daru need to know something that’s going down around town, she’s the person that they go to since she knows everything there is to know about Akihabara (as well as some of the writer’s here on Honey’s Anime). Then when we get to the future in season 2, we still see that Faris still maintains her personality, but she is now a highly proficient soldier who is willing to fight the power.
7. Kagari Shiina
Kagari is Mayuri’s adopted daughter from the future. While she initially time traveled to the year 1998 at the age of 10, by the time she shows up in Rintaro’s and Mayuri’s life in 2010, she is 22. Due to numerous circumstances after arriving in 1998, she loses her memory and is manipulated by a mysterious organization (who is aware that she’s from the future) to obtain the time machine. She is shown to be a highly trained sleeper agent but in the end, she still regains her motivation to reunite with Mayuri and protect her no matter what the cost.
6. Suzuha Amane
Though she is initially introduced as a part-time employee of Rintaro’s landlord’s CRT shop, she’s actually a soldier from the future. Since the time machine she keeps on the roof of the Radio Kaikan Building by Akihabara Station only has enough fuel for one more time travel, she is very hesitant to leave 2010. And to make things even crazier, she’s Daru’s daughter! Due to her upbringing in a bleak future, the way she interacts with the cast and her surroundings comes across as distant and awkward. In a way, you can say she’s like a foreigner in a new country.
After discovering that Daru is her father, they end up creating a meaningful relationship despite Daru not being all that mature. In addition, she makes sure that Daru and her mother end up meeting and falling in love during the start of the second season. Then when she recalls Kagari, her partner, she plays a part in the search for her and once again goes back to her duties of being a soldier once the team decides to save the future again.
5. Maho Hiyajo
Just like the viewers, when the cast first sees Prof. Hiyajo, you’d think he’s 12! In fact, she’s actually in her twenties and an accomplished scientist in the realm of AI (and Okabe and Daru love to tease her for her height). It turns out that she was a former colleague of Kurisu, and used Kurisu’s memories (prior to meeting Rintaro) as the foundation of the Amadeus AI program. Since Okabe no longer has the real Kurisu to interact with, Hiyajo fills in that role of being the scientific senpai who also has something of an older sister presence to the group.
As she learns the truth about time travel, she plays a bigger role in re-creating the microwave/phone time machine in wanting to save Kurisu’s life. Thanks to her inclusion in Rintaro’s lab, she helps the rest of the team to once again help save the future!
4. Mayuri Shiina
Though she’s only a couple of years younger than Rintaro, they have been best friends since elementary school. While he pretends she’s a hostage of Kyouma, his alter ego, she just plays along since she cares about him. Due to her age, she comes across as innocent but she showcases a different kind of social awkwardness than Daru and Rintaro. Mayuri reacts to their personality quirks like it’s an everyday thing. Her role in the series is that she’s both a little sister and maternal figure to Rintaro. She keeps everyone in line by contributing to the chores and food of the lab.
However, in one episode where she repeatedly gets killed, the audience sees how important Mayuri truly is to Rintaro. He goes through great lengths to save her life by agreeing to sacrifice Kurisu. For the second series, she plays a bigger role by helping Rintaro get out of his angst and bring back his Kyouma persona.
3. Itaru Hashida
Itaru, referred to as Daru by Mayumi and Rintaro, is the lab’s super hacker. Though he went to high school with Rintaro, they didn’t become friends until their senior year and ended up in business and going to college together. Despite presenting himself as a stereotypical otaku, Daru makes something of himself in the future. He ends up marrying a very attractive woman and has a beautiful daughter that resembles her. A majority of his role is that he’s the comic relief of the series. Daru likes to make references to hentai games and moe, and teases the female characters in relation to them, most especially with Hiyajo by calling her a Loli to her annoyance.
Putting his otaku tendencies aside, Daru has a very humble personality and even finds Rintaro’s Kyouma persona immature. When things go wrong, he can be the voice of reason but often meets (comedic) failure. Even though he’s still a first year university student, he shows that he’s one of the world’s best hackers by bypassing the security of top government organizations. If there is one thing to appreciate about Daru, it is how Tomokazu Seki portrays him. While Seki has traditionally used a high-pitch and/or scratchy voice, as Daru, he tends to use a very deep and slow voice to showcase him as obese and nerdy, but when it comes to the future Daru who loses weight, his voice in that form will be more familiar to fans of him.
2. Kurisu Makise/Amadeus
Despite being slightly younger than Rintaro, Kurisu (nicknamed Christina since Kurisu is also a way of saying Chris in Japanese) is already an accomplished scientist to the point that she made her own father jealous. While she is initially annoyed at Rintaro’s antics and his attempts at time travel, once she sees what him and Daru are up to, she plays a larger role in the perfection to the time traveling phone/microwave. After spending time with Rintaro, she starts to see his better qualities and even falls in love with him. Unfortunately, she is willing to sacrifice herself in hopes of saving Mayumi and the future.
Months after her death (and with her encounters with Rintaro never technically happening), her memories prior to meeting Rintaro are brought back through an experimental AI called Amadeus, she doesn’t know Rintaro upon meeting him. She exists only in the digital realm, but Amadeus’ voice and appearance are based that on Kurisu. While Amadeus doesn’t have the extremities of the real Kurisu’s hostilities towards Rintaro, it helps her have a better relationship with him based more on curiosity with his pre-existing knowledge of his interactions with the real Kurisu from his time travels. Thanks to her interactions with the Rintaro that we see in 0, through Amadeus, we see more of a childlike curiosity of Kurisu that we couldn’t see through the real one.
1. Rintaro Okabe
Some of you may be familiar with a Japanese word called Chuunibyou, which you can translate to meaning as arrested development. Though a lot of characters due express this in their own way, Rintaro is the king of it. Rintaro claims he’s a genius mad scientist, but he’s barely an undergrad at a university in Akihabara! Despite that, he does show a unique sense of creativity and passion for science in the first season. As an expression of his obsessions, he would often resort to his personally created alter ego, Kyouma Houin, by using weird poses and speaking Japanese in a broken accent for humor (and giving his friends weird nicknames). But after sacrificing Kurisu at the end of season one in order to save Mayuri, much of Steins;Gate 0 has Rintaro suffering in angst due to those events. He hangs up his lab coat and takes his scientific studies more seriously.
After he meets Hiyajo, Lenskin, and Amadeus, you see much of the pain he is in due to what he went through in the first series. Now remembering that there’s a future he has to save, he has to work past his grief in order to do so. What makes Rintaro number one on this list is the development he goes through between both seasons. As the main character, you see him at his highest and lowest. His time travel experiences and the consequences he bears because of them genuinely develops his character and the audience can feel what he’s feeling. The fact that he expresses so many emotions and motivations due to he has had to see is what makes him a great hero.
Thanks to the performance of Mamoru Miyano, viewers can feel all aspects of his character. We can feel him as just normal Rintaro, his silliness as Kyouma, and his love and pain for both Mayuri and Kurisu. When you see his relationships with both young ladies, you may feel like he’s two timing, but deep down inside, he’s really not and shares a different kind of relationship to both of them. With Mayuri, she’s kind of the little sister he never had, while Kurisu is someone he can share his passion for science with on an equal level.
With both seasons showing dark and comedic qualities, it is thanks to a well balanced cast that can bring those qualities to life. Despite all the circumstantial changes the anime and games go through, viewers/players can see the numerous ways the characters can develop. In some instances, their personality changes. Or in other scenarios, their sex can also change! But worst case scenario, you can undo a relationship you had with a certain person to the point that you confessed your feelings to them. The characters through this anime teach us to cherish our friendship and love for the people in our lives, because one day for whatever reason, it may be gone and that is why all the cast as a whole in Steins;Gate is very captivating to its audience.
Very rarely do you encounter a story that perfectly executes the concept of time travel. There have been many popular stories concerning the subject, but very few contain no plot holes or suffer from the mistakes that tend to happen when you’re trying to comprehend something that’s almost incomprehensible. Steins;Gate is one of the most recent examples to successfully portray time travel in a different light yet still not suffer from any mistakes. Yet it’s not the unique take on time travel that makes this short story stand out; it’s the characters themselves.
Steins;Gate would not have been as popular as it has currently become if the characters were not who they are. The cast is very small, resulting in each character contributing something important to the series as a whole in terms of their personalities, their choices, and their interactions with the other characters. Whether some of them are humorous, very intelligent, or represent topics larger than themselves, there’s usually at least one character that the average viewer can take to despite the small cast. Here are the Top 10 Steins;Gate Characters.
10. Shouichi Makise
More commonly referred to as “Dr. Nakabachi”, Shouichi Makise was a scientist researching the field of time travel, and is also Kurisu’s father. Jealous of his daughter’s academic success, Dr. Nakabachi attempts to murder his daughter in order to steal her research on time travel. Dr. Nakabachi’s popularity mainly lies in the fact that he is the main antagonist we the audience see in the series. However, compared to the other characters as well as his short screen time, Dr. Nakabachi’s popularity is pretty low. That being said, he does inadvertently play a key part in being the catalyst that helps bring Okabe and Kurisu closer together.
9. Yuugo Tennouji
The owner of the CRT store below Rintarou Okabe’s apartment as well as Okabe’s landlord, Yuugo may have a small role in the story, but has a big impact overall. A big, muscular man, Yuugo earns himself the nickname “Mr. Braun” from Okabe due to his passion for CRT television, resulting in Yuugo often losing his temper with Okabe over his eccentric behavior as well as his “experimenting” in his apartment. Yuugo’s reveal of being associated with CERN and the action he takes once Okabe catches him, however, is pretty monumental, as we begin to see the first test for Okabe in terms of whether he can push through traumatic events in order to set things right. While he’s one of the least popular characters on the show due to his limited role, people still tend to enjoy Yuugo if not for his straight man attitude towards Okabe.
8. Moeka Kiryuu
Moeka Kiryuu is quite the opposite of most of the other girls in the series. Unlike the others who are happy and vibrant, Moeka is very much stoic and takes matters seriously, almost dangerously so. Moeka also tends to be expressionless a lot of the time, which only adds to the accidental humor she portrays as she solely communicates to anyone via cell phone, even if they’re right in front of her. Because of her emotional walls, it takes some time before Okabe and the others understand why she acts this way. Moeka tends to be popular in the sense that she stands out from the rest of Okabe’s friends in terms of her personality. Fans can also relate to her preferred form of communication and the humor that results from that. Definitely one of the more unique personalities in Steins;Gate.
7. Ruka Urushibara
A close friend and classmate of Mayuri’s, Ruka tends to be very shy and outright feminine in terms of his interaction with others. Ruka’s story and character are different in the sense that while most of the others tend to wrestle with various terms of loneliness, Ruka struggles with his desire of wanting to be female instead of male. Okabe’s travel to different world lines actually makes this possible, resulting in Okabe having to acknowledge Ruka’s feelings toward him and how to further pursue their relationship. Ruka’s popularity tends to resonate towards those with similar feelings as well as being the subject of humorous misunderstandings Okabe and the rest of the group have with his appearance when they first meet him.
6. Faris Nyannyan
The most popular waitress at the maid café that Mayuri works at, Faris is actually very similar to Okabe. Both are characters who act a certain way in order to hide who they really are. In Faris’ case, her family is very wealthy due to them owning much of Akihabara; as a result, Faris felt that those who knew this would treat her differently, and has only confided this knowledge to those who she really trusts. Faris’ popularity lies in the “moe” personality she exaggerates while at the same time being more than just the façade she puts on. There’s definitely more than meets the eye when it comes to her backstory for those interested in mystery, and at the same time there’s a simple humor Faris portrays in terms of her interactions with Okabe and Mayuri.
5. Itaru "Daru" Hashida
Itaru Hashida aka Daru is Okabe’s closest friend as well as a hacker in various types of software. Daru also possesses an incredible amount of knowledge regarding otaku culture, making him have perverted tendencies. Despite these traits, however, Daru serves as the voice of reason in the group; it is because of his down to earth approach that he is able to keep Okabe (and sometimes Mayuri) in check whenever they get too excited about something. Daru’s popularity lies in being relatable to anime fans in terms of his style of humor as well possessing a similarity with many anime fans in real life.
4. Suzuha Amane
First appearing as a part-time employee for Yūūgo Tennouji, Suzaha enters the series as a normal tomboy who enjoys riding her bike. As the series progresses, however, it is soon revealed how Suzaha is not only from the future, but that her father, who she spends a majority of the series looking for, is Daru. Suzaha is definitely popular in the sense that she’s quite mysterious; she keeps a polite distance from everybody and appears to be someone altogether when something catches her interest in regards to her mission to find her father. She also tends to be full of surprises in terms of her fighting ability, her mission, and her very identity.
3. Mayuri Shiina
A naïve and innocent girl considering her age, Mayuri is the childhood friend of Rintarou Okabe. Even though Mayuri can be a bit socially inept in terms of understanding the world around her (including her friends), Mayuri has an innocence about her that marks her as a kind of “moral compass” in the story. Mayuri plays a big role in the series in terms of being why Okabe is who he is as well as the decisions he makes later in the story. Many people like her mainly as being a very sweet person as well as having the type of humor younger fans of anime tend to enjoy. Even older fans who aren’t big fans of her humor can appreciate how Mayuri tends to instigate some of the other characters into their kinds of humor.
2. Rintarou Okabe
The main character of the series, Rintarou Okabe aka Okarin is a self-proclaimed mad scientist who is eccentric in every sense of the word. Constantly talking to himself, manically laughing at random moments, always on the lookout for the “Organization” that’s always after him… Okarin certainly seems to lead an interesting life to those who don’t realize he’s simply a university student who’s just a bit odd. The fact that he acts this way in order to make his Mayuri’s life more enjoyable, however, reveals the true character beneath all the bravado, and it’s just one of several key moments where Okarin’s true character is revealed. Many fans of the series like him not only because of his quirks, but also because when the moment really mattered, Okarin despite having his wildest dreams come true, chose to do whatever it took to make sure his friends would be OK, especially those closest to him. Even if you’re not a fan of his humor and awkward interactions with the other characters at the beginning, you find yourself rooting for him as he travels through the different world lines to save his friends from their fates.
1. Kurisu Makise
Needless to say, Kurisu Makise is easily the most popular character, and for good reason. A beautiful young girl considered to be a scientific genius and quite mature for someone her age ends up spending her time researching time travel with some wacky offbeat peers (to say the least). Considering how easy it is for a fair amount of anime fans to identify with Okarin or Daru, it’s no surprise that seeing someone like Kurisu hanging out with them and revealing that she shares their interests can be welcoming to them. Add in the fact that fans feel that she’s a go-to example of a tsundere character, and you have yourselves a character that you’re constantly talking about. Kurisu does go through her own development just as much as Okarin does; by the end, she appears to be a lot more relaxed and even happier to be around people that care about her and who she can relate to. Without a doubt, Kurisu is the most popular character.
Here are the top 10 characters in Steins;Gate. Do you think the girls should have dominated the list? Should Kurisu’s father have been higher up, considering he’s one of if not the main protagonist? Let us know in the comments!