Albedo Piazzola...

Is a character from the game XENOSAGA, programmed by MONOLITH. This is the first installment of the saga began back in 1998 with XENOGEARS - which is the fifth episode in the series. Confused? Well, we understand you.

You can call Albedo the "villain" of the first episode, DER WILLE ZUR MACHT, though in this game and its myriad of mysterious characters, one may barely tell the difference between friends and foes.

Born in 4741 T.C. ("Trascend Christ"), Albedo is 26 years old, a U.R.T.V., short for "U-DO Retrovirus". "Created" (or rather, "engineered") as biological weapons by the Yuriev Institute in Old Miltia, the U.R.T.V. were to cancel the U-DO through their life energy wavelength (the "U-DO" itself seems to be a sort of a wavelength referred to as a "living consciousness", but still remaining of unknown origins). Of the 669 U.R.T.V. that were created, three are introduced to us: Albedo himself (unit 667), Rubedo (unit 666) and Nigredo (unit 669), Jr. and Gaignun in the game.

Rubedo, Albedo and Nigredo were separated during the Miltian Conflict. While Rubedo and Nigredo took up the identities of Gaignun Kukai and his "adopted son" Jr. and created the Kukai Foundation, the whereabouts of Albedo remained a mystery - until he's seen under the orders of Margulis, important member of the U-TIC organization ("Unknown Territory Intervention and Creation Agency"). But perhaps "serving under the orders" isn't really the proper phrase, for Albedo seems to be working on his own, aiming for goals known to him only (or maybe not; you'll see, there is always more than meet the eye regarding almost all the characters of this game).

All U.R.T.V. are clones of Dmitry Yuriev, head of the Yuriev Institute, but were subjected to a genetic mutation so they could develop abilities and to a lesser extent, different but minor physical features, such as hair and eyes color. Rubedo (Jr.) can control his growth (so he still looks like a 12-year-old boy, despite being 26 already), Albedo can regenerate his body (even if his head is destroyed, as he shows in the game), and Nigredo can telepathically communicate with Rubedo, though Episode II seems to provide hints of other of his abilities.

What's the emotional relationship between the three of them, beyond the circumstances of their "birth"? It seems we'll have to wait until seeing Episode II to fully learn the story of the "brothers", but from what we do see in the first game, we could say that Albedo has developed some sort of obsession with Rubedo, whom he calls "my other half" (just as Rubedo also does). Not to the extent of desiring for his death, but to make him suffer for "what he did in the past" (again, we must wait until the second Episode is released in America). Nonetheless, as Albedo regards Rubedo as important to him, he seems to despise Nigredo intensively. Oh yes - wait until Episode II for that...!

Is Albedo mad? Oh yes, he is. Insane, crazy, mad... As you like to call it. Why? What caused his insanity? We can just guess. The U-DO maybe, as Jr. claims, or his own birth ("a monster born from the Life Recycling Act", as Pellegri puts it in the game). We're still waiting to learn his story. But in spite of his apparent madness, Albedo's reasoning, speaking and acting belie his inner self - oh, maybe. If you forget about his fixation for killing realians (the Kirschwasser, specifically) and being hated (as he announces), you could call him a "genius".

Albedo's name comes from the Latin word "albus", "white", but the whole reference can be tracked back to Carl Jung, a well-known German psychologist. Jung described the stages in one's life and their relation to psique in colors, according to alchemy concepts.

According to Jung's studies, there were 5 stages in one's life. The first one was the Nigredo ("black"), symbol of the dark matter, of the nothingness, of unborn life. Following it was the Albedo ("white"), symbolyzing innocence, the beginning of life. The third stage was the Citrine ("yellow"), symbol of adolescence and illusions. The fourth stage was the Rubedo ("red"), symbol of youth and action. The last stage was the Coeruleus ("blue"), representation of maturity and contemplation.

In the other hand, Experimental Psychology gives each color different meanings and symbolisms. As such, the possitive attributes for the white color are perfection, pureness, truth, innocence, glory, integrity, firmness, obedience, eloquence, innitiation, forgiveness. The negative attributes are coldness, little vitality, void, absence.

In Arts, the Theory of Colors proposes that white isn't actually a color but the synthesis of all colors.