- "I can definitely smile no matter what."
- — Eric, to Mira and Sean in the Decontamination Room
He works as a clerk at an ice cream shop in Nebraska. He is truly passionate when it comes to ice cream.
He is Mira's boyfriend, and after the events of the game, her husband. He is initially unaware that she is a serial killer, something he discovers during the Decision Game.
Eric has gray eyes and shaggy brown hair covering most of his ears, except for the lobes. His bangs go down to his rectangular eyebrows. He has a sharp, larger-than-average nose.
Eric doesn't care much about fashion and is not materialistic, so he wears simple and basic clothing with no accessories. He wears a slate gray dress shirt with brown corduroy collar and cuffs and a breast pocket on the left side. The dress shirt has indigo buttons. His pants are formal wear and are the same shade of brown as his shirt's accents. He also wears black-and-brown shoes. He has a black bracelet on his left wrist like the other participants.
- "SHUT UP! He was trying to make me look the fool! He probably figured I wouldn't shoot! Looks like he figured wrong! ...I won't stop. Not until you're all dead... Because one of us is the one who killed Mira."
- — Eric, after murdering Carlos with a shotgun
Eric comes off as mostly bumbling, incompetent, pitiful and hapless, especially when Sean's intelligence exceeds his own, much to his own frustration and embarrassment. He doesn't seem to have much self-confidence or a high self-esteem, saying he is "just a lowly ice cream shop employee". Mira mentions that when she first saw Eric, "With one glance, I could tell he was useless. No talent, no worth, nothing." However, she noted that there was "something different" about Eric compared to other men but couldn't quite put her finger on it.
He is often seen with a wide smile plastered on his face. Smiling, regardless of the situation, was a trait that his mother told him would bring happiness to himself and others. It eventually became a habit of his own, functioning as a "mask" to cover up his abusive and traumatic childhood, as well as for many dismal situations throughout his life.
He is in a relationship with Mira, who he calls his "angel" and his "beautiful goddess". He is extremely protective of her and constantly tries to impress her during their time in the Decision Game, though most of his attempts are ignored. He is so attached to Mira that he is willing to kill himself to be with her in death, despite being terrified of dying.
Eric is a very anxious and easily frightened man who is unable to cope with stress. He cracks easily under pressure, such as when he attempts to shower D-Team and C-Team in acid to guarantee his own survival. This can make him a danger to others, prone to rage and losing his composure, especially around Sean, and particularly when Mira has been killed. Eric lacks tact and uses a lot of profanity, inappropriate language and mannerisms around Sean (such as shouting at Sean to shut the hell up for being a fucking brat, and dropping f-bombs around Sean). At one point, he may murder Sean after Sean drops his weapon, after which he proceeds to remark "Heh! What an idiot!"
Despite Eric's general lack of composure and violent outburst towards Sean and others, he does on occasion display a level of kindness. He has apologized to Sean several times (on differing timelines) for how he has treated him, although the true level of sincerity in these apologies is unclear. Upon hearing from Sean about how alack of memories made his current companions very special to him, Eric is calmed down from his previous stressed state, and appears to display a moment of genuine friendship towards the boy. That being said, this didn't stop him from then becoming emotionally unstable enough to threaten him with a shotgun upon assuming Sean as Mira's killer. Under normal circumstances when he is not stressed has his composure, Eric seems to care about the welfare of others. In the "Force Quit: Q" fragment, he was the only one on Q Team who seemed to definitively consider the death count being "0" as "plenty to be happy over". Eric also seems to at the very least, care about the welfare of animals, as demonstrated by the disgust in his voice when him and the others discovered that Gab had been shot by Delta. It is mainly upon moments when he is strained to his breaking point that he becomes homicidal.
However, when this has happened, he can end up being pushed into killing someone over the the smallest of reasons, and is even willing to kill someone whom he believes is a completely normal child. This is best seen should Sean forget the number for his helmet, which prompts Eric into shooting the child, before it has been demonstrated the Sean is a robot. Even after this should Sean try accusing anyone (sans Delta) of being Zero, prompting Eric to shoot him, Eric then decides to also kill Sigma, Diana, and "Q", for seemingly no reason (although he most likely figured one of them was probably Mira's killer).
Eric was raised by his mother and father, and alongside his younger brother, Chris. He notes that his childhood, at first, was nothing special, though his mother told Eric and his brother that a smile can bring happiness to others and themselves, so they should always smile. Eric and his brother took this to heart.
Unfortunately, his mother died of an unknown cause. After his mother's death, Eric's family quickly began to crumble. His father, once described as clumsy, but happy, became an alcoholic and began physically and emotionally abusing his sons, beating Eric relentlessly. Eric in particular received the brunt of his father's drunken rage since he was to take care of Chris. Eric's smiling habit became a mask for the abuse, believing that if he smiled, one day his happiness would return.
Soon after, tragedy struck the family once more when Eric's father's abuse eventually lead to the death of Chris. It is heavily implied Eric's father drowned Chris in a bathtub as "punishment" for misbehaving, while Eric witnessed it. Eric was then forced to discard Chris' body in a lake. This event left a lasting traumatic scar on his psyche, causing him to recall that day during times of great stress.
- "Daddy... Daddy... He's the bad one... H-he said to do it... That's why I put it... In the lake... I put Chris's body... in the lake... Oh no... I must... keep smiling... Keep smiling... Keep smiling..."
- — Eric having a post-traumatic breakdown in the Pod Room
At some point in time, Eric's father "fell ill" and died. In his adult life, Eric eventually began working at a local ice cream parlor somewhere in Nebraska. He enjoyed his job, but was not particularly happy with it. However, one day, he was greeted by a "vivacious woman" unlike any woman he had ever seen before. This woman, Mira, left a lasting impression on him, causing him to seek her out and start a relationship with. Eric devotes himself and his feelings to his "angel" Mira.
Sometime in 2028, Mira decided to join the Mars Mission Test Site (Dcom) experiment in Nevada, claiming that she did so because it looked interesting and fun. In actuality, she was to be Zero's accomplice. Eric joined the experiment because Mira wanted to.
Zero Time Dilemma
In the various branching timelines, Eric may kill everyone. He has a tendency to turn hostile with a shotgun.
In another, he may be killed in the Study by Sean. Mira then proceeds to gore his body open to remove his heart.
In the aftermath of the game, Eric convinces Mira to turn herself into the police for her crimes as the "Heart Ripper". However, even while she was behind bars, he eventually followed through with his intention to marry her, believing that despite her dark past, she could overcome it and become a better person.
During one of his visits to her prison facility, he brought along Sean, who eventually opened a hole out of her cell to allow Mira the chance to fix her past crimes using the transporter device. Before Eric could fully process what had happened, Mira and Sean were already heading off to the horizon.
- "CARLOS, YOU ASSHOLE! You got it wrong!" (Carlos incorrectly guesses the coin flip)
- "WHAT THE FUCK IS THAT STUPID THING ON YOUR HEAD?!" (about Sean's helmet)
- "SHUT THE HELL UP, YOU FUCKING BRAT!" (to Sean)
- "Wh-What? Watch where you're staring!" (concerned Sean is staring at Mira's breasts)
- "I always mustered up my best smile for customers, even the boring regulars I was getting tired of seeing. I still offered the most delicious ice cream to them. I really, truly love ice cream."
- "That's just it. [My family was] completely normal. A kind mom, a clumsy dad, and an annoying little brother..."
- "Mom always told us to 'never forget to smile'. She'd never hurt a bug... Not even if a line of ants crossed her path... She was that kind and gentle. She was incredible, and when we lost her, that's when Dad changed."
- "'Don't cry. Don't get mad. You better always smile' was what Dad liked to say. But unlike Mom, he was never not angry with us... Eventually I figured out how to smile regardless of what was going on. Just smiling day in and day out. No fun. Not happy. I'd be made fun of...or yelled at... And no matter the pain, no matter how bad it was, I never raised my voice. I just kept smiling. I didn't stop even after Dad fell ill and died..."
- "So I guess the two smiles - one taught by my mom and one forced by my dad - got kind of mixed up, and the result is what I pasted on my face."
- "The worst part of me still came to the front after we got trapped here."
- "It's not MY FAULT!"
- "Mira... where is she!?"
- "Mira... Mira is my angel!"
- "Damn brat! Stop bullshitting me!" (to Sean)
- "What was that...? Did I just hear you say "yes"...? SIX PEOPLE DIED! And you...! Ah, I get it now. So that's it..."
- "You killed Mira! You killed her! YOU KILLED HER!" (to Sean)
- "Then tell me who did it... Tell me the killer's name! 20 seconds... That's all I'm giving you. You better tell me the truth. I don't like liars. Now, tell me. Who killed Mira...? 19... 18... 17..."
- "You're not making any fucking sense!" (if you say something random when saying who killed Mira in the Pod Room)
- "Hmm... I see... Zero... I guess that's true, in an overall sort of way... But you're the one who did it PERSONALLY!" (if you claim that Zero killed Mira in the Pod Room)
- "Me? I... killed Mira...?" (if you claim that Mira was killed by Eric)
- "The dog... killed... Mira? Uh huh... And how'd he do that?" (if you claim that Mira was killed by Gab)
- "Huh. You're saying she took her own life? By strangling herself?! Don't fuck with me!" (if you claim Mira killed herself)
- ""I don't know who the hell that is!" (if you claim Delta killed Mira)
- "FUCK!" (if Sean doesn't answer who killed Mira)
- "Everything just seemed so bright after I met her. I couldn't help but think every day was great. I was going to propose. I scraped together all my money and bought an engagement ring. And then... Then... Why... Why did this have to happen...?" (Eric weeping)
- "You bastard... You're fucking with me, aren't you!"
- "Stop running your goddamn mouth!" (before killing Sean)
- "What the hell... Are you screwing with me? That's not funny!" (claiming Gab is Zero)
- "Me...? So you're saying I'm Zero...? You fucking brat!" (claiming Eric is Zero)
- "What...? How dare you- You dare insult my angel? My Mira...? Shut the hell up!" (claiming Mira is Zero)
- "Oh? and your evidence?...Yeah. Tell me what makes you say that....Don't tell me, you randomly picked a name?...Bastard... I'm not gonna fall for it." (claiming Carlos, Junpei, Akane, or Phi is Zero)
- "Ah, I knew it was you... DIE!" (claiming Sean is Zero)
- "Ah, screw it, I'll just kill all of you!" (killing everyone with a shotgun)
- "I'm coming to you, Mira." (suiciding with a shotgun to his head)
- "Calm down...? CALM DOWN...? My girlfriend's been MURDERED! HOW the HELL am I going to CALM DOWN?!"
- "Cut it out! I'm so SICK of this SHIT!"
- "As long as you can face life with a smile, happiness will come to you."
- "Smiles... looks better on...you." (Eric's last words to Mira in Q-END 1)
- "A, because I think you're adorable. B, because you are so beautiful! C, because you're very cute! D, because you're my darling! E, because you make me excited...! F, because you're like a feather in my arms..." (to Mira for each key part found in the Study)
- "Let's go, Mira! Let's get out of here and build a happy home and wonderful future together!"
- As revealed in the development notes, one of the challenges of Eric's design was making him look like he belongs to the world of Zero Escape, which has an anime art style. Eric has overtly Caucasian features, and the art designers were concerned that Eric would look too realistic and out-of-place. Whether or not the developers succeeded is up the player.
- The developers were also interested in asymmetrical expressions, such as having one half of his face smiling while the other emotionless, as his mother told him to always smile.
- Eric's favorite ice cream flavor is strawberry.
- Eric likes button down shirts.
- One of Eric's hobbies is cosplaying.
- When Eric dies trying to saving Mira, he has a smile plastered on his face.
- Eric's status screen icon depicts him as a baby with a pacifier. This is a reference to some of his behavior, which may be perceived as "childish", as he comes off as a manchild at times.
- Eric dies in every major ending except the CQD endings.
- Eric's X-Passes are Lake, Fool, Poor, Ice and Love.
- Lake - What he was forced to dump Chris in.
- Fool - Eric is rather oblivious and blindly forgiving to Mira throughout the game, and he is also rather impulsive.
- Poor - Eric is the subject of much misery in both the backstory and events of the game.
- Ice - He worked at an ice cream shop.
- Love - What he considers himself to have with Mira, even though Mira cannot reciprocate the same feelings back to him (excluding the true ending where they become engaged, as the X-Passes were made before then). Like many people, love is probably something that Eric strongly desires to have, although he apparently has a lack of love in his life, especially after mother's death, his father's transformation into a madman, and brother's death.