|Main characters of DTB From left to right Hei, Yin, Mao, and Huang.|
Darker than Black: Kuro no Keiyakusha ("Darker than Black: The Black Contractor") is an anime television series, created, directed and written by Tensai Okamura and animated by Bones.
Ten years ago, an inscrutable and abnormal territory known as Hell's Gate appeared in Tokyo, altering the sky and wreaking havoc on the landscape. The heavenly bodies disappeared, replaced by false stars. During this time, people possessing various special abilities emerged, each capable of different supernatural feats - these are known as Contractors. Each fake star has a corresponding Contractor, which reacts to their activities. As such, Contractors are usually identified by their star's Messier catalogue number. Kept secret from the masses, these individuals are known to murder in cold blood, smothering unnecessary emotions with logic and rationale. Their incredible abilities, however, are gained at the cost of their humanity - Contractors are thus named because of an involuntary compulsion to "pay the price" each time their power is used, which can range from eating particular foods and completing meaningless tasks, to self-harm and having their bodies change in peculiar ways. Various nations and organizations around the world train and utilize Contractors as spies and assassins, resulting in violent battles for valuable objects and information.
A manga, illustrated by Noki Ya, was serialized in Monthly Asuka. Kadokawa Shoten released the series to two tankōbon on August 8, 2007 and January 26, 2008 respectively. The series has been licensed for a North American release by Yen Press. A second manga, illustrated by Yuji Iwahara, the original character designer for the anime, is currently being serialized in Square Enix's Young Gangan seinen magazine under the title Darker than Black: Shikkoku no Hana. This is a separate one from the first and it is a new story taking place one year after the events of the anime.
Standing in the Battledome
Generally the Darker than Black universe is around the low-meta human power level with notable exceptions. Notable exceptions are characters who can manipulate matter on an atomic scale (under certain conditions the attack power can even reach up to island destroying.) and time manipulation.
Contractors are peak human at best with some notable exceptions as well.
Most contractors are trained in hand to hand combat are used in military or paramilitary operations are knowledgeable in that area.
Their constant state of rationality make them ideal tacticians as well.
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