"I’m the god of Rome, child. I am the god of military might used for a righteous cause. I protect the legions. I am happy to crush my enemies underfoot, but I don’t fight without reason. I don’t want war without end."
-Mars to Percy Jackson in The Lost Hero
Ares is the Greek god of war. His symbols include the boar, dog, wolf, spear, sword, and vulture. His Roman counterpart is Mars
Ares is one of the few children of the Olympian gods Zeus and Hera. He developed a love of violence that surpassed that of any other Olympian, which made him perfect as the Olympian god of war. It also made him unpopular among his fellow deities who despised him for his overt love of war regardless of reason to fight. Despite this he was given a place on the Olympian ruling council possibly due to his parentage. He was taught by Priapus to dance and fight.
As the god of War, Ares would often participate in mortal conflicts, but would often fare poorly in divine contests. He would lend strength to whatever side he favored, but was known to be somewhat fickle and change sides in the middle of a battle. The blessing of Ares is known to give invincibility in battle. Despite his great strength and fighting ability Ares often fared poorly in battles with other supernatural enemies. His half-brother Hercules is noted to have stalemated if not outright defeated him in battle twice. At one point he stripped Ares of his armor and another time defeated Ares and one of his children with the aid of Athena. The Alodai giants defeated Ares and imprisoned him within a jar. During the Trojan War he sided with the Trojans despite promising Hera he would aid the Greeks. For his actions he was wounded by the mortal hero Diomedes with the aid of Athena. After Zeus allowed the Olympians to participate openly in the war he challenged Athena, only to again be defeated and forced to flee. Apollo also defeated him in a boxing match at one point. He also fled in fear of the giant Typhon when the monster first attacked Olympus, though the rest of the gods did as well. Even though he was the god of war, some say he disturbed the gods with his pitiful tears when he lost.
Despite these setbacks, Ares fought in the Gigantomachy and defended Olympus successfully against several other enemies.
Ares is aloof, cruel, proud, rebellious, and violent; an easily angered bully who seems to care only about fighting. Rick Riordan stated that "He could pick a fight in an empty room." Because of this, he is disliked among gods and mortals. Even when Ares was brainwashed into starting a fight among his family, he still thought it was amusing. Ares is a capable strategist but his temper makes him tend to focus on strength and his arrogance leads him to underestimate his opponents, allowing clever fighters to get the better of him. He hates being called a coward and is willing to pick fights with people for no apparent reason.
Ares believes any problem can solved through fighting and encourages rebellion and violence above everything. Despite his personality, he does have a soft spot for his children even if he can be a strict parent as shown with Clarisse.
Ares typically wears black jeans, combat boots, a leather duster, and muscle shirt with a bulletproof vest (his shield in disguise) and an iron padlock necklace. He wears red tinted wraparound sunglasses to cover his flame-filled eye sockets. He is described as handsome with scarred cheeks and tall with an oiled crew cut. He rides a large, black Harley Davidson chopper motorcycle with a flame pattern paint job, a leather seat made from human skin, with shotgun holsters riveted to the motorcycles sides. This motorcycle is actually his war chariot in a modern version. He also has a hunting knife strapped to his thigh and an aluminum baseball bat (actually his sword in a modernized form) that can turn into various weapons, including a two handed broadsword and a shotgun.
As a son of Zeus, Ares is a very powerful god:
- Prowess in Battle: As the God of War, Ares is a fierce warrior, and a master of both armed and hand-to-hand combat, which is one of the reasons why he starts his own fights. He successfully fought in the first Gigantomachy, and defeated Luke Castellan (one of the best demigod swordsmen in 300 years) in a sword duel. However, he can sometimes underestimate his opponents and start toying with them, which is why he sometimes loses, like in his duel with Percy Jackson.
- Warfare: Ares is an expert in all areas of warfare.
- War Manipulation-The ability to manipulate war, strife, combat and other forms of conflict Ares as god of War has the power to influence all forms of conflict including mental, physical, spiritual and conceptual ones, regardless of the area and numbers involved, control how they progress and draw power both from the conflict alone as well as the dying. Ares is naturally, extremely skilled in all form of fighting, weapons and both strategy and tactics as well as statistics of war. Ares can start conflicts by influencing people or events, rise personal and fanatical armies, control and create weapons of every kind and even grant others extensive abilities of combat. Ares has the incredible power to invoke war and chaos within an enormously large radius, ranging from a city to an entire continent. With this power he has full control over the city or continent that is in war and chaos at the time.
- Telumkinesis: As the God of War, Ares has a great amount of control over weapons
- He can conjure and use any weapon, though he prefers to use his sword and spear. He knows everything about a weapon when he sees it.
- He boasts that his physical strength is infinite.
- He can curse weapons (like he did to Percy's Riptide in The Lightning Thief).
- He can disarm his opponents (like he did to Bianca and Zoe in The Titan's Curse).
- Odikinesis: Ares has control over feelings and emotions of war (such as Hate and Rage), and frequently induces them in order to start fights. Percy always feels angry in his presence: "as if I wanted to hit a wall or start a fight."
- Pyrokinesis (limited): Ares is shown to have some control over fire, especially whenever he makes his appearances. It is unknown to what extent he can control fire.
- Necromancy (limited): According to Clarisse, the losing side of each war has to give Ares a fraction of their dead. In The Sea of Monsters, Ares presents Clarisse with a ship full of obedient Skeleton Warriors.
- Blessing of Ares: Ares's blessing gives the person blessed near invulnerability. He gives his blessing to people who show pure courage (or bloodlust) in the battlefield. He blessed his daughter Clarisse in The Last Olympian, and she charged through the battlefield, destroying a drakon and anything else in her path.