Ishtar is the Babylonian goddess of love and fertility, the Babylonian equivalent of the Sumerian goddess Inana. She is the personification of the planet Venus. Her father is uncertain, sometimes claimed to be the daughter of Nanna, the moon god, or Anu, the sky god. She is also known as the "Lady of Battles" because she is known as a very violent deity. She is the creator and guardian of life. Her symbol is the eight-pointed star, and her holy city is Uruk (or Erech). Uruk is a town of sacred courtesans - part of her cult was devoted to prostitution.
Ishtar's sister is Ereshkigal, the goddess of the realm of the underworld. Ereshkihgal cursed her sister, and Ishtar died. With Ishtar dead, the earth withered and would not produce, and neither animals nor human beings would bear young. With great effort, the water god Ea used magic to revive Ishtar, and Ereshkigal was not pleased. She demanded to trade her sister for someone else, finally deciding that her husband Tammuz (Dumuzid) would replace Ishtar for six months out of the year.
Ishtar is the ruler of Binah. By bringing Astaroth to throne room in Binah, the player may separate him into Ishtar and Majin Ashtar. Ishtar explains that YHVH forced her to fuse with Ashtar and become Astaroth long ago. This allows the player to create Ishtar with fusion afterwards.
Ishtar appears as the boss in three different versions of the gold level of the Ueno Mirage instance. Which variation appears depends on a player's actions through the instance. The first is triggered if no others are triggered. The second is triggered by using any of the Twilight-Colored Vases on the fountain before the boss room. Both of these instances share the same opening movie of a confrontation between Metatron and Ishtar. The difference in the boss rooms is simply that after defeating Ishtar in the second, Astaroth will spawn with more mobs.
The third variation can be triggered by summoning Astaroth as a demon partner in the dungeon, acquiring curses on him, and seeking atonement from pillars along the route. After fulfilling all requirements for this route, the dungeon's music will change slightly. The final boss in this instance is a strengthened form of Ishtar with an increased amount of mobs. Unlike the first two variations of the instance, the boss video simply features Ishtar.
"The Akkadian goddess of love and war. She is known as the "Queen of Heaven" and is equated with the planet Venus. In the epic of Gilgamesh, she had many lovers, but all were fated to be killed or turned into animals at her hands."
The Goddess whose revival is sought by Minako in the New Game Plus Challenge Quest, Ishtar, Goddess of Harvest. After obtaining Astaroth's soul in the earlier quest Prevent a Deal with an Overlord, Minako now seeks to incarnate Ishtar by collecting the souls of demons that come from her and using them to recreate her. Once Mother Harlot and Asherah's souls are collected Minako sacrifices herself by eating a Red Pill, becoming the ancient goddess Ishtar.
Ishtar comes to fulfill her contract with Minako and make the land of Tokyo fertile, thanking Flynn for aiding Minako, who sacrificed body and soul to revive her and will keep her half of the promise. Ishtar asks Flynn to let her accompany him but can be declined, though lets him know to call her whenever he needs her. The goddess disappears to make the land a more fertile place should Flynn say no.
"I'm a goddess with both mercy and cruelty. You saw another part of me in that nightmare."
—Ishtar (Trisha), Catherine
Ishtar takes the form of Trisha (an anagram of her name), also known as the Midnight Venus (ミッドナイトヴィーナス?). She is an attractive woman with a red afro who is the hostess of the various modes, including the Golden Playhouse (Golden Theater in Japan), the game's primary story mode. She provides an introduction to the game's modes and will text Vincent concerning his achievements in the Nightmare stages and provide him with hints. She also acts as commentary throughout the game. Players can make her reveal her identity and her role in the story if they do well enough, and completing the game's toughest challenge - Axis Mundi, the final stage of Babel - produces a cutscene where she breaks the fourth wall. In Catherine, Trisha also uses the god Astaroth as her avatar while Vincent is in the confessional booth in between rounds of the Nightmare stages.