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Niccolo

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Niccolo
Niccolo LOM artwork.jpg
Legend of Mana artwork
First appearance Secret of Mana (1993)
Latest appearance Echoes of Mana (2022)
Gender Male
Species Niccolo
Counterpart(s) Neko
Voice actor(s) Jpn: Wataru TakagiEoM
“I'm the wandering Niccolo, peddler of smiles!”
Square Enix Official Website

Niccolo is a salesperson who appears in several Mana games. He first appears in Secret of Mana with the name Neko. The party can often find Niccolo traveling around the world map looking for potential customers to sell items to, and they can buy various common items from him. In Secret of Mana and Trials of Mana, Niccolo is a purple cat, but in new releases since Legend of Mana, he was redesigned to resemble a big, brown rabbit. No matter his appearance, Niccolo has an unusual verbal tic of meowing and purring and/or making cat-related puns in many of his appearances.

Niccolo is often depicted as an easygoing, shrewd business-creature, and so takes advantage of every opportunity to earn lucre. He is known to take on any number of occupations, from salesman to brigand to merrymaker and nearly everything in between. However, as a source of comic relief, Niccolo's animal instincts tend to land him in particularly dangerous situations, from which the heroes may have to rescue him.

History[edit]

Secret of Mana[edit]

In Secret of Mana, Neko is an anthropomorphic lavender calico cat, traveling the world to sell his wares to adventurers. The party can first meet Neko at his general store to the west of Potos Village. Aside from selling items, Neko also runs an inn, and he can also save the game progress. Throughout the party's quest, he charges twice the retail price of most consumable items.

Trials of Mana[edit]

In Trials of Mana, Niccolo, along with Chikeeta and Josephine, is a Merchant Cat; but he would end up leaving his order to become a member of the Nevarl guild of honorable thieves. While there, he became friends with Hawkeye and was initially part of the guild's final raid on Sirhtan. When the guild reports back to Flamekhan, the leader is found in league with the evil witch Belladonna who then murders Eagle and takes Jessica hostage to cover up her plans. Hawkeye is framed and left to his execution in the dungeons, but Niccolo bombs him free and tells Hawkeye to head for the Priest of Light, who he believes can lift Belladonna's Choker of Death from Jessica's neck. After a brief enthrallment, Niccolo assists Hawkeye at other points in the story.

Legend of Mana[edit]

“He believes that he brings happiness to his customers with his transactions, but he sometimes plays dirty tricks on them. Dislikes the Sproutlings and the Flowerlings.”
In-game Encyclopedia

In Legend of Mana, Niccolo makes his first appearance as a brown rabbit. As a traveling salesman, Niccolo believes that he brings happiness to his customers with his transactions. In reality, Niccolo's avaricious, miserly ways are ones that have seen him swindling quite a number of characters with well-played tricks, some of whom include Kristie, Sotherbee and Teapo. He is said to dislike the Sproutlings and the Flowerlings.

Sword of Mana[edit]

In Sword of Mana, much like his earlier appearances, Niccolo sometimes appears on the world map to sell items. For this game, Niccolo is designed after his appearance in Legend of Mana.

Children of Mana[edit]

Main article: Wanderer (character)

In Children of Mana, he was renamed to Wanderer, and is one of the game's protagonists.

Echoes of Mana[edit]

“A merchant who has traveled city to city peddling wares for generations. His "money-crazy" dealings have led to more than a few unsatisfied customers. Niccolo isn't very fond of sproutlings or flowerlings. As for faeries, he might dislike them as well—if he could see them, that is.”
Square Enix Official Website
Main article: Nicco

While it is not known whether he is related to other creatures named Niccolo, a green calico cat named Nicco makes an appearance in Chapter 2. As with the previous Niccolos, he is a salesman, albeit a shady one, when he tries to pawn off a weathered boat to help the party cross a lake to visit ancient ruins. Fortunately, a wolfkin warrior, Blainchet, picks up on Nicco's hustle and scares him off, offering also to help the party explore the ruins.

Like the Trials of Mana incarnation, Nicco has been localized as having speech characteristics of the Mid-Atlantic United States, and so employs the plural "yous" in addition to cat puns.

Niccolo from Legend of Mana and Wanderer from Children of Mana are obtainable as unit cards and Memory Gems as well.

Etymology[edit]

Niccolo's Japanese name, Nikita, is a unisex name prevalent in multiple cultures throughout the world. As a male given name of Slavic origin, it is a diminutive of Nikolai, whose English equivalent is Nicholas. As a female given name, it shares its Greek and Slavic origins with its male counterpart, but owes its use to pop culture references.

His name in other languages, Niccolo, comes chiefly from Italian, where it is also the equivalent of English Nicholas. Nicco is a diminutive of Niccolo.

Neko is the Japanese word for "cat".

Gallery[edit]

For this subject's image gallery, see Gallery:Niccolo.

Names in other languages[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Japanese ニキータ
Nikīta
Nikita