- "I made a promise in another history that I'd definitely save you two..."
- — Carlos to Akane and Junpei, after opting to stay behind after SHIFTing from another timeline
Carlos is a young firefighter who is one of the main three protagonists of Zero Escape: Zero Time Dilemma, the other two being Q and Diana. He is the leader of Team C in the Decision Game, which also consists of Junpei Tenmyouji and Akane Kurashiki. Carlos is an honorable young man who claims he joined the Mars Mission Test Site (Dcom) experiment to help save someone very close to him: his sister Maria.
Carlos has blond hair with a faint widow's peak, green eyes, and a fit body. He has a sharp nose and a wide mouth. He has some faint scars on his forearms due to being a firefighter.
He wears a white shirt with a light pink open button down on top. The shirt's inside is white and the sleeves are pushed back to his elbows. The button down also has a right-side breast pocket. The pocket has a blue stripe and a red stripe near the top, with a twin-ax symbol below the stripes. The axes are a reference to his firefighter occupation.
He wears loose fitting blue jeans with a brown belt and brown hiking boots. Like the other players, on his left wrist is his black bracelet.
In some parts of the game, Carlos is covered in blood. His left arm is a bandaged stub after it is hacked off by Akane. In another segment, his face is bruised after being punched in the face repeatedly by Junpei.
In C-END:1, he briefly appears in a yellow firefighter outfit.
Carlos is generally kind and considerate. He is hot-blooded and has a strong sense of justice, as well as a desire to save people, and is able to do so as a firefighter, putting his life and safety on the line to protect and rescue. He also cares deeply for his sister, and will go to any lengths to protect her. In the Decontamination Room, he supports trusting the other players even with his life on the line.
He is rather mature (when he tells Akane to "shut the fuck up" and tries to force himself on her, this is simply an act to distract Zero.) He notes that while he doesn't know much about romance, his co-workers come to him to tell them their stories, implying people feel they can confide in him. He is noticeably modest and doesn't brag or show off.
Carlos feels strongly when it comes to the concept of "regret", saying that people should say what they want to say while they're alive, as people live in a world where anyone can die at any moment. Due to being a firefighter, he's surrounded by death and people in danger. It is implied he regrets not being with his sister more.
There are certain points where he is shown to be slightly hotheaded and make quick decisions without thinking about the consequences, showing he is a risk taker. At one point, he even risks his life by ordering Eric to kill him with a shotgun because he is confident in his SHIFTing abilities.
Due to being a playable character, some of Carlos' actions can be determined by the player, leaving to varying interpretations of who he is (such as blaming himself or Akane for Junpei's murder, or choosing to ally/betray Junpei in the Decision Game). It is also unknown if he was willing to kill Delta in the final scene of the game.
Carlos lived a happy childhood with parents and his younger sister, Maria. At the age of 18, an arsonist set fire to Carlos' home. The blaze overtook the home and Carlos rushed inside in order to rescue his family. Hearing Maria's voice, he found her and successfully brought her out of the burning home. Unfortunately, Carlos was unable to reenter the home and his parents perished in the fire.
Maria collapsed soon after being rescued and eventually fell into a coma. Though he assumed it was carbon monoxide inhalation, he received the shocking news that she was diagnosed with Reverie Syndrome, an incurable disease causing her to have consistent memory lapses. Confined to the hospital, Carlos made constant trips to the hospital every day just to be with Maria. He made it a habit to always be there in the morning to say "good morning" and always leave at night with a "good night."
Fueled by the deaths of his parents, Carlos became an exemplary firefighter and saved countless lives during his career. He has pulled off miraculous rescues and has avoided getting killed or even seriously injured during his rescues. He claims he's been a firefighter for 10 years.
Carlos eventually somehow came upon the opportunity to make money by participating in the Mars Mission Test Site (Dcom) experiment in Nevada. By participating in it, he would receive 500,000 dollars, enough to pay for Maria's treatment. Carlos willingly joined the experiment for this once in a lifetime chance. He became the leader of the 9 participants in the simulation and was in charge of making key decisions during the experiment.
Zero Time Dilemma
Carlos is the leader of Team C alongside Junpei Tenmyouji and Akane Kurashiki. As such, Carlos handles certain decisions and responsibilities that can affect Junpei's and Akane's fates. Carlos is trapped in Ward C in the Underground Shelter.
When Junpei and Akane disagree and argue, Carlos tries to act as the middle-ground for their conflicts, mitigating their disputes and acts as the voice of reason in the Decision Game created by Zero II. This usually results in Carlos being an awkward third wheel. Carlos realizes his sister's life is on the line, and it is up to the player to decide how to compromise between Junpei and Akane and who to sacrifice when the going gets rough.
Carlos is revealed to be able to tap into the morphogenetic field, allowing him to SHIFT. It is revealed after the Ambidex Game in the Power Room that Carlos is able to subconsciously SHIFT during moments of great danger. His abilities fully awoke when his home was ablaze and it is thanks to this ability that he was able to rescue Maria in the first place. Afterwards, Carlos continued to subconsciously access the morphogenetic field during his rescues, allowing him to avoid situations that would lead to his death as well as rescue all of the potential victims.
After Carlos discovers his ability to SHIFT and realizes Akane and Junpei also have this ability, the group sees a hologram of Zero in the Transporter Room who tells them that he is dead in the current timeline; but if they meet him at one where he is alive and they are dead in order to meet him, he will answer their questions. They are then attacked by a QCD-controlled robot. Carlos helps Akane and Junpei escape to the C-END: 1 timeline by transporter, leaving Carlos behind to fend off the robot.
There, a recording of Zero in the Lounge tells Akane and Junpei that they have arrived at the timeline where Radical-6 is released, to Akane's dismay. Zero tells them that he is, in fact, Brother, the leader of Free the Soul, and he plans to release Radical-6 and kill 6 billion people because he foresaw that in the future, a terrorist will detonate a nuclear bomb and kill all 8 billion people. Since he does not know who the terrorist is, he cannot stop him directly, but by killing 6 billion he has a 75% chance of killing the terrorist and saving 2 billion. He invites Akane to a meeting of Free the Soul on April 12, 2029 where she will learn more about them, and tells them that he has a little sister they know well (i.e. Phi). Zero also gives her the Free the Soul robes.
Carlos, who was left behind, temporarily SHIFTs to the timeline after he killed Akane with the axe, in order to give himself time to think. After he returns, he SHIFTs to the timeline where C team presses the button, then uses the transporter to send himself 10 months back. 10 months later, he breaks the X-Door open in the C-END: 1 timeline, freeing Akane and Junpei. Akane lashes at Carlos for not stopping Zero and unknowingly allowing the Radical-6 pandemic to happen. Finally, she resolves to restart the AB Project and prevent the release of Radical-6. Junpei offers to help her, but she instead tells him he must forget everything that has happened, and stabs him with her disconnected bracelet. It is unknown what happens to Carlos after they leave, such as if he survives the Radical-6 apocalypse.
After deciding to SHIFT into the history where everyone was spared from the Decision Game by winning the coin toss, Delta explains his true motives for the Decision Game; to ensure that he and Phi are born and to see if those participating in the game will help to stop Free the Soul, and also to stop an even more deadly religious fanatic.
Delta hands Carlos a revolver and tells him that he has the choice to either shoot him since only they know of the murders that occurred in the other multiple timelines of the game or let him go. Carlos' choice is unknown.
In the post game Carlos files, it is revealed Maria heals from her syndrome. Soon after, Carlos received an invitation for Junpei and Akane's wedding. However, there's still a radical terrorist who plans to kill all of humanity and Carlos offered to help Junpei and Akane find this fanatic. It is unknown he joins Crash Keys as a result.
- "Just by looking, I can tell if someone's in love."
- "I love my little sister very much. She's the sunshine of my life..."
- "Ha ha. You're horrible." (to Akane for suggesting he has a sister complex)
- "We'll find the way to stay alive!" (in the Infirmary)
- "Let me tell you something, Junpei. Say what you need to, while there's still time to say it."
- "Anyway, I just wanted to say... I don't want the two of you to end up having any regrets. If you have something to say, say it while you're still alive." (to Junpei and Akane)
- "Junpei, if we die, I'm going to kill you!"
- Junpei: "Listen, Carlos and I will protect you and... die."
Carlos: "THE FUCK...?!"
- "I was thinking about you, Akane. You're uh, well, to be blunt, really hot."
- "Oh look, a neanderthal is trying to block my way." (accusing Junpei of cockblocking)
- "SHUT THE FUCK UP!" (to Akane)
- "You heard me. Shoot me. Don't worry... I won't die. Even if this body is destroyed, my conscience will be---" (to Eric moments before being shot)
- "No, you're wrong, Delta... Nothing in the future has been determined yet. We'll shape the future with our own hands!"
- Since the very first decision in the game, as well as the very final scene in the game, are in Carlos' hands, it can be interpreted that he is the main protagonist of Zero Time Dilemma. During the coin toss, Zero refers to Carlos as "the leader of the group", referring to not only Team C but all nine players. Additionally, in the true end, Delta gives Carlos the gun and it's up to him to make the final decision of the game, again implying he's the leader of the whole group.
- Carlos had nobody to go to prom with, so he brought his cat named Kitty.
- Uchikoshi once claimed Carlos gels his hair with Krazy Glue.
- In the Rec Room, while examining the bottles of alcohol, Carlos says he never buys alcohol for himself, but doesn't refuse if coworkers invite him out. He also says he always leaves early to visit his sister.
- Carlos' doll type in the status screen seems to be either a Ken doll (a possible reference to his facial features which could be considered generally attractive) or an action figure (a possible reference to him being a firefighter, a job with a lot of action).
- Carlos' X-Passes are Shift, Dream, Fire, Hero, Fight and Save.
- Shift - Carlos is a SHIFTer who unwittingly used this technique in his job as a firefighter to save people's lives.
- Dream - A reference to his sister's Reverie or Daydream Syndrome.
- Fire / Fight - Carlos is a firefighter.
- Save - Said job has him save people.
- The Matrix is one of Carlos' favorite movies, which he mentions to Junpei and Akane in Control.
- C-Team: Find the Mask: Correct - Carlos: "I haven't been a firefighter for ten years to make the wrong choice now""
- Carlos mentions his "younger" sister is currently 22 years old in the Power Room. Also Junpei mentions Carlos is older than him and Akane, while they're both 22.