Shiroe is a Half-Alv Enchanter-Scribe and the main protagonist of the Log Horizon series. A veteran player of the MMORPG Elder Tale, he establishes the guild Log Horizon in order to improve the city of Akiba after the Catastrophe.
In the real world, he was a 23-year old engineering graduate student named Kei Shirogane (城鐘恵, Shirogane Kei), and had 8 years of experience in Elder Tale under his belt. He is renowned as the strategist of the Debauchery Tea Party, an informal group that managed to tackle some of the game's most difficult raids.
His Overskill is Contract Art Ceremony, which allows him to create contracts that can change even the laws of the world; for example, his first contract allowed him to change an Earthling's subclass into Adventurer, granting them the privileges that Adventurers had, including revival.
Compared to his real-life body, Shiroe is several centimeters taller in Elder Tale, and his figure became slightly slimmer. When he first regains consciousness in the game, he notices that his hands are more slender but also seemingly more dexterous. Shiroe, in real life has black hair and a slim build and also wears glasses. Currently, he's one of the few characters seen outside of the game.
Shiroe wears round glasses and is described by Naotsugu as having eyes that are "sanpaku," a term that means that the iris is small and doesn't completely cover the vertical axis of the eye. Although this is also the result of his Half-Alv race, he notes that he is insecure about it since he was called the same thing in real-life.
In Shiroe's original outfit, he wore a brown turtleneck sweater with a harness-like [Seriously, what is that?] over it. He wore green pants that go from a lighter green on the top to a darker green right above the knees. Dazaneg's Magic Bag almost always rests on his left side, held in place by a belt. His boots follow a similar color scheme as his pants. A bracer always sits on his forearm, although whether it provides any sort of purpose is unknown. This outfit is topped off by his signature cloak, which has a collar large enough to comically serve as a basin for water.
Shiroe was a graduate student majoring in engineering when he was trapped in the game Elder Tale. Naturally, a cautious and thoughtful introvert, he has played the game since middle school. He is a veteran with a near-encyclopedic knowledge of the game, which is known for its depth and complexity. Even as a child, he disliked playing outdoors and from middle school-on preferred to stay indoors, where he used computers to explore virtual reality. Shiroe remained somewhat of a hikikomori through college. He notes upon regaining consciousness in Akiba that it's been a while since he was last outside.
Although Shiroe is socially awkward and tends to be asocial, he does not actually dislike other people. Instead, he is fiercely independent and wary of others who approach him with ulterior motives. He is not above helping people who are really in need, and he appears to have a soft spot for beginners, such as Touya and Minori. In addition, he can be quite protective of people he cares for, a trait that Nyanta used to tease him about.
Shiroe is overly humble, seeing himself as prideful and arrogant and leading him to be self-conscious about enforcing his principles or beliefs on others. However, even if he knows that others might not appreciate his actions or thank him afterward, he will use any means possible to achieve his goals if he sees it as the greater good. This has caused others to sometimes misunderstand his motives and has earned him the nickname Black-Heart Glasses (腹ぐろ眼鏡, hara-guro megane?, alternatively translated as "the villain in glasses"). (In Japanese media, most characters described as "haraguro" appear to be nice but are, in fact, schemers or scoundrels. "Hara" (腹) is metaphorically one's true intentions, and "guro" (ぐろ) means black. Yen On calls him the "Machiavelli in glasses," which associates him with Macchiavellianism. Both monikers are the exact opposite of his true personality; see the Trivia section).
Shiroe is generally a loner and has reservations about guilds due to unpleasant experiences with people who sought him out only to exploit his expertise in the game. He was, however, a member of the informal group of players known as the Debauchery Tea Party and was its unofficial strategist. He became a well-known strategist due to his effort in researching and mastering his skill called Full Control Encounter, which he describes as using 1% as a unit, forecast 30 seconds ahead; in other words, he can grasp his allies' remaining MP with 1% margin of error, know all remaining resources of both allies and enemies, and forecast battles 30 seconds ahead.
Shiroe's main class, the Enchanter, is an unpopular class in Elder Tale. Lacking the firepower most would associate with a magic-user class, the Enchanter is a pure-support class that shines only when supporting the party with its buffs, de-buffs, and binds. As a result, he loves this class for its potential, its complexity, and because the idea of "a class that can't do anything on its own" offered an experience totally opposite from his tendency toward independence and self-reliance.
Due to his expertise in CAD drawing as an engineering student, he chose Scribe as his subclass. After discovering cooking without the in-game menu allows a player to produce out-of-the-game products, he started experimenting with his Scribe subclass. After learning about Spirit Theory from Li Gan, he was confident that if the conditions are met, it could be used to create new magic and laws. For example, he made a contract between Log Horizon and Rundelhaus Code to keep him alive by converting him into an Adventurer and a member of Log Horizon, allowing him to be reborn at the Cathedral.
Before the Catastrophe
Kei Shirogane grew up in the western suburban region of Metropolitan Tokyo. As a child, Kei found it difficult to make friends and often went to the library rather than hang out with other people. His parents were rarely home due to work. He grew up resenting them for that, although he later came to regret the way he had been inconsiderate towards them.
At some point in middle school, Kei had a crush on a girl in his class. Two weeks before a school trip, he bought her a souvenir and gave it to her out of his own free will. However, shortly after the school trip, he was rejected and constantly muttered, "I'm too boring."
At around 15 years old, Kei began playing Elder Tale, as an Enchanter named Shiroe, a shortened version of his surname. Four years before the main storyline, he became a member of the Debauchery Tea Party until its disbandment two years later. He was the capable "bus guide" who was always pushed into making Kanami's wild and unreasonable requests into reality.
Shiroe never joined a guild after leaving his first one because of his inferiority complex and his belief that the system was too easily corrupted, and he found himself once being used as a tool by a guild. Although joining the Debauchery Tea Party helped him play with others, he still found himself distrustful of guilds, preferring to act as a mercenary during raids after the group disbanded. For example, he helped the Black Sword Knights, gaining the favor of Isaac despite rejecting a request to join the guild.
According to Naotsugu, their first offline meeting entailed a thirty-minute lecture on the difference between black and oolong tea, which then moved on to Taiwanese politics, the EU, and the economy of tea. The two of them lived an hour's bike ride apart, and were often among the five Tea Party members pulled along to various events by Kanami.
Along with being a member of the Debauchery Tea Party, Shiroe was also well-known among players for his contributions to the Elder Tale community. He often frequented foreign boards and forums to find out information, and ran a blog or guide called "Shiro Log."
Before the Homesteading the Noosphere expansion pack was released, Shiroe had been exploring a beginners' area with Minori and Touya using the game's Teacher System to help them practice playing. When the pack was released, his screen filled with jet black darkness, and when he regained consciousness, he was no longer at his desk but instead appeared to be inside the in-game city of Akiba.
At first, he was unsure whether he was inside of Elder Tale or merely in an unrelated world that happened to resemble the game, but after accidentally triggering the appearance of the in-game menus by raising a hand to touch his chin, he is convinced that he has somehow been transported into the game.
After realizing he couldn't log out or call for the GMs, his first plan was to find other players he knew and find them to gather information and not be alone. It is while searching in his friend list that he recognize the name of Naotsugu, who didn't log in the game for two years. The two of them agreed to meet below the Silverleaf Tree, a well-known place in Akiba.
After briefly catching up, Shiroe realizes that any discrepancy between their real-life selves and their avatar could be felt, as he struggles to walk without tripping due to his avatar being a few centimeters taller than he is. Immediately after they meet Akatsuki, stuck in her tall male avatar, who asks him for his Appearance Reset Potion. While he at first refuses compensation from Akatsuki after resolving her issue, he is then convinced by Naotsugu to make her join their small group, as it was safer not to be alone, especially for girl Adventurers.
Saving Serara arc
While discussing the increasingly-deteriorating situation in Akiba, Marielle requests Shiroe and his group to take care of their guild while they are away, revealing to them that they have to head out to Susukino to save a member of their guild, Serara, who had gone there for a quest before the Catastrophe and was now stuck there with a malicious guild. She had nearly been enslaved by Brigandia's guild master, Demiqas, but was saved by a kind Felinoid after escaping from Demiqas.
Realizing fully well that Marielle's guild, which had low experience in fighting, would not stand a chance, Shiroe is pushed by Naotsugu and Akatsuki to take the initiative, and offers to go in Crescent Moon's stead. While journeying up to Susukino, he reveals that his offer is more out of his growing spite for Akiba's situation and a desire to get away rather than pure goodwill.
Upon returning to Akiba, he learns after the return celebration about how Akiba's situation had turned in the weeks that they were gone. Disgusted that large guilds were taking everything for themselves, with the lingering sensation of despair among the general populace, and by Hamelin's actions, Shiroe takes some time to think over his course of action. After talking with Nyanta, he decides to start his own guild to start working change in the city.
Conference of the Lords arc
Shiroe is invited to the Ancient Court of Eternal Ice to attend the Eastal League of Free Cities' Lord's Conference, and learns more about a spell called "World Fraction" from the Sage of Mirror Lake, Li Gan.
While attending the Conference of Lords with others of the Round Table Alliance, Shiroe learns of an army of thousands of Goblins moving to attack the cities of Eastal and the attack on the Adventurers Training camp at Choushi by approximately a thousand Sahuagin.
He relays this information to the rest of the Round Table Alliance leaders at Akiba and those with him at the Conference of Lords via a telepathy meeting and guesses that the Goblin and Sahuagin attacks are related to the Return of the Goblin King event part of the Elder Tale game. When Elder Tale was a game, the Return of the Goblin King event never grew to this scale because the Adventurers mostly prevented it from happening by destroying his minions, thus weakening the Goblin King's Forces and making it easier to slay him. Success in the quest rewarded players with gold and rare items. It was considered an easy Intermediate-Level quest making it a popular event enjoyed by players.
However, after the Catastrophe, the players were more concerned with making the world more livable and leveling up their skills. As a result, they didn't accept quests from Earthlings, and the Goblin King event was neglected. Unfortunately, this made the Goblin King and his armies more powerful than ever in Elder Tale's history. Furthermore, the fact that the number of monsters grew to this number meant that something was amiss with the Knights of Izumo, powerful Earthlings called Ancients who would help defend the land in case the Adventurers were not up to the task. Usually, if the minions weren't cleared in time, the Knights of Izumo would step in and help reign in the monsters. However, it did not happen, resulting in a huge amount of monsters. The Round Table Alliance leaders concluded that with the Knights of Izumo missing, the Eastal Lords would try to manipulate them into sending an army to eliminate the goblin threat.
He developed a new form of spell that did not exist before in the original Elder Tales game, creating a magical contract with the Earthling Rundelhaus Code to save his life. Despite trying to keep it under wraps, both Li Gan and Nureha end up finding out about it.
Libra Festival arc
During the Libra Festival, Shiroe is busy with paperwork when Minori and Akatsuki lead him out of the cake contest.
Later on, he realizes that they are under attack by someone trying to undermine the Round Table conference and takes measures to counter the attempt. He later joins Raynesia's banquet with Krusty and Michitaka to thwart Lord Malves's plan, forging a letter with his signature and deliberately antagonizing the princess so Crusty could solve the situation as representative of the Round Table Alliance.
It is after these events he meets with Nureha, who offers him a chance to join her, but he refuses as it would make everything they had done to this point a lie.
Fallen Guardian arc
Shiroe and Naotsugu leave Akiba under secrecy, with Akatsuki and Nyanta helping to maintain an alibi for them. After Akatsuki falls against the murderer, the two reunite at the beach on the Moon, where they talk to each other before respawning at the Cathedral. He is there because of an unexpected occurrence, but does not specify what it was to Akatsuki.
Gold of the Kunie arc
Hoping to resolve the Round Table's financial issues caused by maintaining Akiba's important structure, Shiroe turns to Kinjo, the leader of the Kunie Clan, even asking Li Gan to help him persuade the stoic man. However, his efforts fall flat, although Kinjo makes him aware of a difficult raid at the bottom of the Depths of Palm.
The group so goes to Susukino, where Shiroe asks for William and the Silver Sword to join him into the raid zone At the same time, Demiqas, who still harbors a grudge towards Nyanta and Shiroe for that overwhelming defeat in the first month of the Catastrophe, barges into Shiroe and William's meeting. After being forced to stand down by William (who apparently overwhelmingly defeated the Monk in a duel). With the addition of Demiqas and Tetora to the raiding party, Shiroe and William barely gather enough members for a Full Raid, as many of Silver Sword's members have become demotivated from dying so many times. Shiroe, who had yet to experience death, is told by William that he would have to die in order to understand the demoralizing effect of death in this world.
The Abyssal Shaft Raid Party goes to the raid zone and defeat the two first raid bosses, despite that Shiroe was worried due to the amount of supplies it would use, although William does not seem to care. However, when they got in confrontation with Ruseato of Seven Prison two other Raid Bosses come to the aid of the first, resulting in a party wipe.
Shiroe finds himself on Mare Tranquillitatis, and wanders through areas that he remembered from his childhood. He remembered his regrets from childhood, reminiscing on how foolish he was and how he always rejected other peoples' kindness. After some time, he finds himself on a beach, where he meets Akatsuki, who had just died against Enbart Nelles, and talks with her. They both harden their resolve, and depart by reviving.
After listen William speech he reflects how William was like a mirror of his own 16-year-old self, Shiroe determines to clear this raid because, as Tetora says, he wants them to win. Quickly coming up with a new battle plan, Shiroe declares he has a plan that has a 15% chance of working.
Shiroe's plan starts to work and the raid party gain the upper hand against Ibura Habura of Third Prison and Tarutauruga of Fourth Prison, however Ruseato injures itself in order to spawn the Shadow Vanguard, what put all the plan in risk, however Demiqas grabs Shiroe to throw him into the room where both Kinjo and the gold production where while draw the attention of the Shadow Vanguard from the raid party. During this moment Shiroe that he never treated Demiqas with respect, and the two finally agreeing something, they hate each other.
Shiroe successfully negotiates with Kinjo this time, and temporarily gains access to the gold he needs in order to buy all the important structures and open fields in the Yamato server and give it all back to the server so that no individual could now hold them, relieving the Round Table Alliance of the duty of maintaining the Guild Center. However, he specifically leaves personal property out of the equation so that he wouldn't infringe on anybody else.
Upon returning to Akiba, Shiroe is immediately hugged by Akatsuki, who herself had completed her first raid battle.
Route 43 arc
Shiroe discusses some more problems Akiba faces, such as the dwindling numbers in D.D.D now that Krusty is gone. Misa, too, is away (her arm never healed either), so Rieze is taking care of most of the guild’s work, Thanks to the way Krusty set up the guild, it could run even without him, but it’s still difficult, so some other guilds are helping her out. Shiroe has worries about what Eins is doing with the Fairy Rings, but we don’t know what or why. He then meets up with Isaac and Calasin to discuss Eastal; the two of them would head to Eastal to power-level the Earthlings' knights. Calasin asks Shiroe if Minori could transfer to his guild, for which he gets called a lolicon by Isaac.
With the knowledge that the Genius are cutting off the Adventurers' attempts to contact Mare Tranquillitatis, Shiroe organizes the Shibuya Raid Team to retake the city, which has been turned into a raid zone.
However, under heavy pressure from the growing desire to return home, the mounting attacks of the Genius monsters, and the steady changes to this world cause Shiroe to lose his edge. Unable to think on his feet, he stumbles around and makes mistakes that cause Rieze, a fellow strategist, to begin doubting his reputation. It takes a slap from Henrietta and encouragement from his guildmates to restore him to normal.
Once everything had settled and the communications system restarted he got a surprise connection with Kanami's group, it was there they caught up and learned that she had a child and somehow Krusty was there and when asked if she could connect both the real world and this one together. He promised he would try his best to make that a reality.
Collapse of the Round Table arc
Nightingale's Song arc
Shiroe specializes in two builds: Enchanter, and Mana Controller. Typically, he prioritizes casting attack support magic on his allies first (like Keen Edge), then adding offensive magic debuffs on enemies (such as Thorn Bind Hostage). He is a valuable asset in Raids due to his proficiency in the Mana Controller build, which focuses on MP restoration and redistribution. It is through this build that his "Full Control Encounter" is at its strongest, and his extensive research on this build is likely one of the reasons why he was able to figure out a way to revive Rudy.
- Unnamed Boots: Short, soft, comfortable boots made of Thunder Elk leather.
- In the Let's Go to Summer Camp! manga short written and illustrated by Hara Kazuhiro, Shiroe states that he cannot swim. Whether this is true, or a lie made up to avoid wearing the swimsuit sent to him by the Roderick Firm (the one Rudy later wears), is yet unknown.
- Shiroe placed second in the first official popularity poll with 852 votes, with Akatsuki in first place. He fell to third place in the second poll with 1,802 votes, losing his spot to Nyanta.
- Yen On held their own version of the popularity poll online, where Shiroe placed first with 122 votes.
- Takuma Terashima voices both Shiroe and Merchant Youngster from Mamare's previous work, Maoyu. Both start of being introverted and shy, but become more self-confident and outspoken after being (sometimes forcefully) put into positions of power.
- Shiroe's full birthdate is November 27, 1994, based on the Catastrophe occurs (May 3, 2018) and his age as of Volume 5 (23), which takes place roughly between September and October in Theldesian time.
- The meaning of Shiroe's name is intentionally ambiguous. Phonetically, it's a combination of the first character of his real last name (城 = "shiro") and his first name (恵, kei, can be read as "e"). Put together, they make "Shiro-e," which would mean something like a "fortress of wisdom." However "shiro" is also a homophone with (白), which mean "white" or sometimes "innocent." Henrietta often pokes fun of Shiroe by calling him Kuroe ("Kuro" = Black), playing on the alternate, more common meaning of the word "shiro".
- In the Taiwanese translation, Shiroe's official name was changed to 城恵 (Chéng Huì, transliterates to "City Benefactor"), instead of transliterating Shiroe's Japanese name. The Taiwanese version's translator, Haniwa, chose to use a localized name that held meaning to Chinese readers, although he said he wished there was a way to place the white/black symbolism in the Chinese name.
- Yen On's translation calls Shiroe the "Machiavelli in Glasses" instead of the "Villain in Glasses," in reference to both Niccolò Machiavelli and Machiavellianism. Ironically, although Machiavellianism is often regarded as being predominantly in favor of self-interest and personal gain, most if not all of Shiroe's schemes are for the greater good, and he rarely takes self-interest into account unless he believes that it is for the better. For that reason, the name "Black-Heart Glasses" is also rather ironic; he appears to be a ruthless schemer on the outside, but he is actually kind-hearted on the inside.
- The term 外記 Geki refers to a title held by scriveners in the royal court under the Ritsuryō system.
|Debauchery Tea Party|
Aihie • Calm.H.Dale • Gingami • Gorouhachirou • Hayato • Indicus • KR • Kazuhiko • Naotsugu • Nazuna • Nurukan • Nyanta • RamMutton • Shiroe • Soujiro Seta • Stallbourne • Suikazura • Saki • Suzuna • Taigamaru • Tsukine • Tuli • Whistler • Yomi • Yuko • ★Kurama☆
|Round Table Alliance|
|Guilds||D.D.D • Black Sword Knights • Honesty • West Wind Brigade • Marine Organization • The Roderick Firm • Shopping District 8 • Crescent Moon Alliance • Grandeur • Radio Market • Log Horizon|
|Representatives||Krusty • Isaac • Eins • Soujiro Seta • Michitaka • Roderick • Charasin • Marielle • Woodstock W • Akaneya Ichimonjinosuke • Shiroe|
- Log Horizon Light Novel: Volume 3, Chapter 4
- Log Horizon light novel: Volume 4, Chapter 5, Part 3
- Log Horizon web novel: Chapter 115 https://ncode.syosetu.com/n8725k/115/
- Log Horizon light novel: Volume 5, Chapter 3
- Log Horizon light novel: Volume 5, Chapter 2
- Log Horizon Light Novel: Volume 1, Chapter 1
- Log Horizon Light Novel: Volume 1, Chapter 2
- Log Horizon Light Novel: Volume 2, Chapter 3
- Volume 6
- Log Horizon light novel: Volume 9, Page 345
- Log Horizon manga, chapter 1
- Log Horizon Light Novel: Volume 6, Chapter 4