Firebrand is a character originally introduced in the 1985 action-platformer Ghosts N' Goblins. He is the first powerful enemy character encountered by Sir Arthur and is infamous for antagonizing the valiant knight throughout the series. Firebrand appears as a winged red demon with pointed ears, although slight variants can be encountered in some games such as the Red Arremer King. After several years spent terrorizing players as an enemy, Firebrand was eventually cast as the protagonist of his own spin-off series beginning with the 1990 Game Boy title Gargoyle's Quest.
Firebrand is notable for his relatively-sophisticated artificial intelligence as an enemy character, although he does not attack until Arthur draws very close or attacks preemptively. Firebrand's typical enemy behavior includes swooping attacks and evasive aerial maneuvers to avoid Arthur's projectiles, as well as intermittently spitting fireballs from his mouth. Certain weapons may be more effective against Firebrand, particularly those that use homing projectiles or fire in a diagonal trajectory.
When Firebrand is called upon to save the Ghoul Realm from King Breager and his army of "Destroyers," he embarks on a journey to find the legendary "Red Blaze," a mythical hero who defeated the Destroyers long ago with the power of heavenly fire. Although initially weak, Firebrand can recover magical artifacts that upgrade his abilities. After gathering many artifacts throughout the Destroyer's realm, Firebrand realizes his true destiny: he is the Red Blaze reborn, and he uses his newfound power to defeat Breager and restore peace to the Ghoul Realm.
Gargoyle's Quest II follows the same basic plot as the first game, although the story of both games is extremely minimal and largely present only in the games' manuals.
Long ago, the world was divided into two realms: one ruled by humans, and the other ruled by demons. When six magical gemstones fall from the sky into the Demon Realm one day, a bloody civil war quickly sweeps across the land as the inhabitants clash for possession of these powerful "Crests," which are rumored to bestow unlimited power to the one who unites them all. Eventually one particularly cunning demon named Firebrand emerges from the fray after claiming five of the six Crests from his demonic brethren. Still unsatisfied with only five of the Crests, Firebrand challenges the demon dragon Somulo for the Crest of Heaven. He defeats the dragon after an exhausting battle and takes wing with the final Crest in hand, but Firebrand is ambushed by an equally-ruthless demon named Phalanx who steals the Crests and proclaims himself the absolute ruler of both the Human and Demon Realms.
Fortunately, Firebrand manages to retain a fragment of the Crest of Fire, preventing Phalanx from immediately unlocking the Crests' true power. Weakened but alive, Firebrand swears revenge on Phalanx and sets out to recover the Crests, which have been hidden across the Demon Realm by Phalanx's minions. After carving a bloody path through the Demon Realm and recovering five of the Crests, Firebrand confronts and ostensibly defeats Phalanx, who had kept the sixth Crest close in anticipation of their final battle. However, upon obtaining the Crest of Heaven once again, it is revealed Phalanx survived the battle; he unites all six Crests, creating the seventh Crest of Infinity and transforming himself into the ravening Dark Demon. Firebrand also gains incredible power from the Crests and, as the Ultimate Gargoyle, destroys the Dark Demon once and for all.
With the unstoppable might of the Crests at his command, Firebrand reflects on the artifacts and their potential for conquest. However, he concludes that his true strength lies not within the Crests, but inside himself. Firebrand disposes of all of the Crests and begins a new journey to seek out his next worthy opponent in battle.