Sunday, August 22, 2010

Fate/Extra over (more spoilers!)

Continuing with my previous post, now I finished the game with the other two Servants.

For the New Game+, you keep all the money of your previous games, as well as all the non plot related equipment and the undisclosed data of the normal enemies (the list of 6 attacks) . You can also fight against a secret boss.

This time I played as a female main character (that is very cute when running), and picking Rani route with Archer and Rin route with Caster. Rani and Rin routes are not really that different, since both characters fulfills the same role.


Master: You
Archer: Anonymous

Archer is an unnamed war hero because the people already forgot about him, but is clear that is the same Emiya from Fate/stay night, even doing references to the original Kotomine and even an indirect one about the original Saber. I suppose that in Rin route he will say something about her, but since I picked Rani route, he was literally standing there with the arms crossed while Rin was dying ;_;

Master: You
Caster: Tamamo-no-Mae

Caster is a cheerful and extremely loyal Servant that wants to become the faithful wife of the main character (even if is female).
She's directly related with Amaterasu, but her divinity was heavily downgraded in the Moon Cell (loosing eight out of her nine tails in the process) and according to herself, she's not really a fox but a jackal.
Out of the 3 Servants you can choose, she have the most funny dialogs due to her Magical Amber-esque quirks, but her low stamina and the heavy dependence of her skills made her the most difficult character to play with.

Caster scene when talking about her past. Is really hard to take a picture of it...

The main difference between Rani and Rin routes is that you fight against a different Master-Servant pair in the 4th and 6th battle.
This is because you'll end fighting all 7 classes of Servants, so if you save Rani you'll fight another Berserker and if you pick Rin you'll fight another Lancer.

In Rani route you fight against:

4th battle
Master: Gatou Monji
Berserker: Arcueid

Gatou is a guy that mixed several religions, and worships his Servant as a God. His objective is to save the humanity via his self-made religion.
Arcueid as Berserker is somewhat weird. Is never explained how became a Servant, her status are downgraded due the ineptitude of her Master, and after the battle she comes to her senses, tears the virtual world with her claws and simply jumps out of scene. Most likely, is the true Arcueid and not data from the Moon Cell.

6th battle
Master: Tohsaka Rin
Lancer: Cú Chulainn

This Rin is not the same Rin from Fate/stay night, but is part of the same lineage of Magus. She's an activist that fights against the Harvey family, so her reason to participate in the Holy Grail War is to stop Leo. As I said in previous posts, her real world self is blond.
Lancer identity is Cú Chulainn. He doesn't have many lines of dialog, but is safe to assume that the data of this Lancer is based in the same Lancer from Fate/stay night, despite that Tron outfit.

In a New Game+, if you do all the Taiga's requests, a tiger vacuum flask appears in the place of Taiga, and allows you to fight the secret boss in the last arena: Ryougi Shiki.

"Yeah. I don't have any business with that woman. If you act obediently, I won't draw my hand."

She seems to be lost in the Se.Ra.Ph system, wandering around and killing Servants. Her real name is not mentioned (except in the credits titles), and the Servant class is Monster.
After the battle (by far the most difficult of the game), you get an useful item that carries to a New Game+ that nullifies an enemy attack.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

1/10 Shijou Takane by Wave

The other figure that I received along Rin is 1/10 Shijou Takane by Wave, sculpted by Abira.

Shijou Takane is one of the two new idols in iDOLM@STER SP, and became my favorite idol as soon as I started to play. Takane is very mature for her age (17) and was raised to be the perfect ojou-sama without being two-faced, a tsundere or act like an spoiled brat.

As part of Beach Queens Treasure Figure Collection, is wearing the same swimsuit that uses in the game, the "Gravure mizugi". Is a classical skirted swimsuit with polka dots. With the silver hair gives her a bit of "granny fashion", but Takane already talks and behaves old fashioned.

She holds the sandals behind her back. The sandals are actually loose and hangs in the fingers.

She comes with two interchangeable faces: an open mouthed smile and an embarrassed smile. The open mouthed smile one doesn't look very good in the photos because the color of the mouth is too pale...

And this is the shy smile face. It looks cute, but I prefer the other one.

Bonus picture:
Takane with Rin's body. Looks a bit weird since Takane bust size is 90 and Rin's only 77...

1/10 Tohsaka Rin by Wave

Yesterday I received 2 figures, the first of them is 1/10 Tohsaka Rin by Wave.

If I recall correctly, this is the first time I purchase something made by Wave. The quality is not bad; the sculpt and paint job are good, but the size (about 16 cm, a head taller than a Figma) make it more similar to a trading figure than a proper figure... that is why the price is only half of the "normal" price range for figures.

The sculpt is by Okumura Yukio (circle the poppy puppet). Is not the best face I saw in a figure of Rin, but is not bad either.

The neck is jointed, so the head can move a little (albeit the poseability is very limited by the hair).

Since is part of the Beach Queens Treasure Figure Collection, Tohsaka is wearing her Fate/hollow ataraxia bikini.

Bonus picture:
The figures in the Beach Queens lines can swap heads, so this is Rin in Shijou Takane's swimsuit. I think I like her more in this rather conservative swimsuit than in her own...
In the next post I'll review Takane figure.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Fate/Extra finished (spoilers!)

Yesterday I finished my first playthrough of Fate/Extra.

It took me more than expected because of two main reasons:

- The Japanese level is way too difficult, and most of it isn't voiced. I understand Japanese if is at a "daily life" level, not when talking about cyber-wizards hacking the Moon. Also, Nasu's style of writing is confusing, inventing words and playing with okurigana...

-I tried my best, but I'm unable to enjoy the game. Most of the time I'm forcing myself to play it. Gameplay wise is like an ultra-simplified version of .hack games, heavily focused in a visual novel styled story instead of the gameplay.

And now, a brief summary of the story.
There are several outcomes for the game depending of the Servant you chose and an event in the middle of the game that allows you to choose between Rani and Rin.
I played as a male main character with Saber as a Servant and choosing Rin.


Year 2032. An ancient artifact is discovered on the moon, the Moon Cell, capable of fulfilling any wish.

The participants enter in the virtually created Tsukumihara Academy, and a system called Se.Ra.Ph allows them to summon a Servant based on the data recorded in the Moon Cell.

After a preliminary testing of candidates that goes for 4 days, there are at the end 128 participants that must fight the other Masters in a one-versus-one inside a maze-like area called Arena. The winner proceeds to the next phase and the loser is deleted both in the virtual world and in the real world, until only one of them remains.

Master: You (can be male or female)
Saber: Nero Claudius Caesar Augustus Germanicus

The main character is the only one of the 128 participants that doesn't have any memory of his real world self. At the end is revealed that the real body is kept frozen due an intractable disease for the last 30 years (like certain character in Cowboy Bebop) and you are the virtual version of that person.
His servant Saber real self is the Roman Emperor Nero. Due to several factors was blamed for the great fire of Rome, but she was a good ruler and all she wanted is her people to have fun. She truly loved her people but she was not loved back, and at the end committed suicide.
She's confident and full of herself and loves both men and women. No explanation of why is so similar to Saber-Arturia.

Saber telling you her real identity.

1st battle
Master: Matou Shinji
Rider: Francis Drake

Shinji is a 8 years old genius hacker that enters the Holy Grail War to show how cool he is, without taking as true the statement that the one who loses dies. His older appearance is because he's using an avatar. Like in the original Fate, he acts like an asshole towards everybody and dies miserably.
His servant is a gender-bent pirate Francis Drake. The official explanation of why the pointless gender change is "Drake was a woman in this world".

2nd battle
Master: Dan Blackmore
Archer: Robin Hood

Dan Blackmore is an elderly English gentleman. His absolute chivalrousness is shown when uses a command seal to forbid Archer to use his guerrilla tactics against the main character.
Archer identity is Robin Hood, but not as a single person but as the several nameless young men that used that name. He uses poisoned arrows and hit and run tactics, acting as a completely fag.

3rd battle
Master: Alice
Caster: Nursery Rhyme

Alice at first is thought to be twins, but in fact the Master is the one using the white doll-jointed goth loli avatar and Caster is Nursery Rhyme, the embodiment of the world of picture books for children. Nursery Rhyme doesn't have a body, so manifest itself as the will of his Master, in this case a mirror version of Alice herself.
Alice is terminally ill or even dead in the real world, and she only wants to avoid the pain and have fun.

At this point, Tohsaka Rin with Lancer and Rani VIII with Berserker will confront each other.

Rin & Lancer VS Rani & Berserker

Due to a certain hacking, you can see the battle and before the outcome you use a command spell to save one of the girls. The girl you save will lose her Servant and becomes your "irregular partner", and the other will eventually fight against you and die. I chose Rin.

4th battle
Master: Ranruu-kun
Lancer: Vlad the 3rd

Ranruu-kun is a woman dressed as the mascot character of a hamburger restaurant chain. She's twisted, and she only know to express love by eating (she already ate her own parents and her child). She wants the Holy Grail to make all the humanity like her.
Her Servant is Vlad the 3rd, the original model for Dracula, that is more screwed than his Master.

5th battle
Master: Julius B. Harvey
Assassin: Li Shuwen

First presented as the teacher Kuzuki Souichirou, he is in fact Julius, the brother of Leonard B. Harvey, hacking the profile of the original Kuzuki but using his own avatar.
In real world, he protects his brother in the shadows killing his opponents, and does the same here.
His servant real name is Li Shuwen, a Chinese martial artist. He conceals his presence and did a fatal attack that stopped the flow of magic between the main character and Saber, eventually restored with the help of Tohsaka Rin in a suggestive mana transfer scene.

"Heh heh, like this, you're surprisingly cute..."

Too bad there is a magic trap in the door that explodes before you can see the full scene...

6th battle
Master: Rani VIII
Berserker: Ryofu Housen

Rani VIII is, like Sion, an Atlas alchemist, but also an homunculus created specifically to take part in the Holy Grail War. She doesn't seem to follow her own will, and refer herself as a tool of her teacher.
Her servant is Ryofu Housen (Lu Bu in Chinese). As a Berserker he doesn't have any personality left, but he had the requirements to be any class besides Caster.

Final battle
Master: Leonard B. Harvey
Saber: Gawain

is the heir of the Harvey family that pretty much owns the 60% of the real world. He's a nice and polite fellow that tries to make the wold a better place with the aid of the Holy Grail.
He introduces his servant as Gawain since the first day.
Gawain is one of the Knights of the Round Table and the nephew of King Arthur. Serious and chivalry-minded, he doesn't speak much. He holds the sword Excalibur-Gallatin (a sister sword of Excalibur), uses sun powered attacks and was invulnerable during the day until was hacked by Tohsaka.

After the battle, the main character, Rin and Saber go to the core of the Moon Cell, and are greeted by a man called Twice H. Pieceman.

Twice was a pacifist scientist killed in a terrorist attack 30 years ago, and the data of him contained in the Moon Cell became self aware.
He thinks that war is necessary for the humanity and confronts you with his Servant, Saver.

Saver true name is not revealed, but since is "the person that reached nirvana", most likely is Gautama Buddha.

After his defeat and a long monologue about the meaning of life and the like, the main character opts to seal the Moon Cell.
Then, the real world Tohsaka Rin receives an e-mail containing the data of the main character.

After that she smiles and promises to find the real body.