Gaius Marcellus Nerva

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Victory Through Discipline
~ Nerva's motto on the bottom of each of his explorer notes

Gaius Marcellus Nerva is a Roman Centurion who served in the Roman Republic/Empire during its conquest of Dacia.  Ever since he woke up on the Island, Nerva is disgusted at the inhabitant's animal like behavior and seeks to conquer it to restore order for Rome with his New Legion.


  • Gaius Marcellus Nerva
  • Nerva
  • Emperor of Pax Arcam
  • FIGJAM Incarnate
  • Mister Nerva
  • Leader of the New Legion
  • Jupiter's Gift

Background[edit | edit source]

Nerva was a Roman Centurion who helped in the conquest of Dacia for the Roman Empire. As a child, Nerva lived in a town in the Roman province of Numidia, an ancient kingdom in northwest Africa. When he was a child, he asked his mother about the gods. His mother told him about a paradise land called Elysium and the Underworld that gives tests to reach that land. Some time later in his life, he got to visit the capital city of the Roman Empire: Rome. Based on the history of Dacia, he was part of a Roman effort to retake the province. In the ensuing battles, Nerva has met his death and arrived on the Island. He is determined to rally a group of survivors into an army that will make the Island know the name of Rome.

Personality[edit | edit source]

Being a Roman citizen and centurion, Nerva is a person who prioritizes discipline no matter where he is.  He is a calculating and determined leader who sets his goals before his pleasures. As a tribe leader, he understands that his army needs to be disciplined and he trains them. He gives them something for them to enjoy as a reward. That is shown when he allows the army to rest for three days after they conquered the Painted Sharks. 

He has a degree of respect towards the scientist minds of Helena Walker and Edmund Rockwell but in the end, he uses them and their respective knowledge to help himself reach his goals of becoming emperor of the Island and using the power of the obelisks to destroy his enemies.

According to Rockwell, Nerva was honest and has a degree of intellect. Rockwell wrote that Nerva knows his way around politics and like how the Romans brought Pax Romana, Rockwell remarked at he might be able to bring Pax Arcam to the Island. When Rockwell was with Nerva, he noted the centurion, like any military man, would see something useful, theoretically the obelisks at the time, if they were to be used as a weapon.

Deluded with dreams of grandeur, Nerva can get so blinded with power and domination when he ignored his tribe's plea to return to base to defend against the Howling Wolves.

Relationships with Other Survivors[edit | edit source]

Helena Walker

  • Based on his explorer notes, the two of them rarely interacted with each other. During said interactions, Helena only told Nerva about what is behind an Obelisk activation and the Tek Cave she visited herself.

Mei Yin Li

  • Being his rival during pivotal moments in his conquest of the Island, Nerva sees the Beast Queen in a negative image due to her getting in the way of his plans of conquest.

Edmund Rockwell

  • In his first interaction, Nerva is amazed with Rockwell's intellect as well as his recipes. He even had a scout to find out where Rockwell lives.
  • He respects the scientist for his advice, unaware that Rockwell is manipulating him.

Appearance[edit | edit source]

Nerva tends to wear an olive wreath that is similar to how Roman emperors wore the olives. He is seen to wear a suit of flak armor along with having a romantic facial hairstyle.

In the ARK animated series, Nerva wears armor in the Roman style with a red cape, and a skull of a raptor on his left shoulder. He wields 2 gladius styled swords with bone handles.

Survival Skills[edit | edit source]

I would trust few tribes to be able to make good on such promises, but Mister Nerva's New Legion is perhaps the most powerful tribe on the island. Indeed, if they maintain their current trajectory, they may be the only powerful tribe on the island.

~ Sir Edmund Rockwell

With the various explorer notes, Nerva's ability as an effective centurion shouldn't be ignored. Being a Roman during the Roman Empire, Nerva can effectively turn a rag tag group of people who have no idea of discipline into the most effective army on the Island: The New Legion. Despite being introduced to weapons such as guns that are foreign to him, he will find it useful if it helps them conquer better. He is also able to creatively make traps and lures for enemy mounts to easily take them down. 

When the tribe had very few mounts, Nerva was still an effective tactician who can learn from his mistakes and launch a devastating counter-attack. Against the Blackthumbs, Nerva rallies his army to stay focused while the enemy tribe recklessly attacks them, quickly turning the tide. He even knows how to outwit the Blackthumbs by baiting them into a trap with smaller creatures. During his war with his New Legion tribe against the Painted Sharks, he can turn an opponent's strengths against them. He understood that the largest aquatic tribe is strongest in both sea and air, but weakest in land warfare. So to whittle down their strength, Nerva directs his tribe into attacking their mainland forts to cut off supplies. In the waning days of the Painted Sharks, Nerva wanted to implement creatures that can have a ballista on its back in preparation for an invasion.  Also, his leadership could also make his New Legion capable of taking on the Island's hardest guardian, the dragon, and the Island's Overseer, with both requiring costly victories and the latter requiring the New Legion's main force to be completely destroyed with only Nerva standing.

On an individual level with experience as a Roman Centurion and soldier, he is proficient with both the spear and sword.

Tamed Creatures[edit | edit source]

The Island

  • Yutyrannus
  • Several Triceratops
  • Mosasaurs or Plesiosaurus (creatures that can have a platform on their back)

The End of Nerva[edit | edit source]

After Nerva ascended from the Island, he met his end on Aberration where he was hit by the scorching heat of the Surface and burned to a crisp. His corpse was later found by Diana Altaras.

Legacy[edit | edit source]

Even though Nerva wanted dominion over the Island, his efforts had profound effects. In a direct sense, he gave Helena Walker, Edmund Rockwell, Mei-Yin Li a means to escape the ARK and travel to other ARKs. Helena, Rockwell, and Mei-Yin gathered information about the ARKs from both Scorched Earth and Aberration though Mei-Yin only traveled to Aberration. His conquest had both bad and good consequences in the long-term but overall, his effort in trying to conquer the Island has set the entire story of ARK in motion.

Gallery[edit | edit source]