The Modern Magus Magazine
“Looks like GudaGuda Honnouji ended last year…”
“What happens when GudaGuda Honnouji ends?”
“You don’t know?”
Rath laughs, smoking a cigarette but actually not because smoking’s bad for you.
“That’s when GudaGuda Honnouji begins.”
All joking aside, they really got me with that. I was seriously convinced GudaGuda had ended with the previous event. I guess throwing Okita and Nobu at FGO is going to be eternal.
But keeping on track, this new event is set in the Yamatai Kingdom, a somewhat-Apocryphal kingdom within the Japanese Archipelago around the 2nd to 3rd century AD. Himiko is something of a mythological queen of that era, and so it’s natural she’s a Servant for the event. Just consider her kind of like the Gilgamesh of Japan’s equivalent to Uruk and you have a decent idea.
|Base Atk||1,647||Base HP||2,200|
|Max Atk||10,659||Max HP||15,000|
|Grail Atk||11,668||Grail HP||16,433|
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So far as Rulers go, Himiko reaches firmly in the middle of the pack of her SSR companions, reaching a good balance of HP and Attack, or at least relative for the Ruler class. With both 3rd best Attack and 3rd worst HP, she’s hardly breaking any conventions, but for where she’s placed, her stats are still higher than average, trading 313 attack for 893 hp compared to Amakusa, or 828 hp for 682 atk compared to Qin Shi Huang. So no matter how you look at it, she’s gotten a good deal out of her stats.
Moving on to her passives, Himiko is actually a rarity in the Ruler class, possessing more than just one passive. While she possesses the standard high Magic Resistance, letting her shrug off debuffs fairly frequently, she also packs A-rank Territory Creation, giving a notable boost to her Arts cards, and a unique passive - Pure Body. Well, it’s actually a subtle Japanese pun using most of the characters for the skill we know as “Natural Body”, but if that isn’t hard to translate, I don’t know what is. Anyway, this passive makes Himiko immune to both Poison and Curse, something that could be useful, but likely won’t come in handy until we suddenly get thrown a hellish Challenge Quest using it.
So how splendiferous is the timely charms of Queen Himiko? On one hand, she’s a treasure to behold:
However, she’s also something of an outdated relic:
All-in-all, Himiko is far from a bad Servant. She takes and uses the benefits of her class fairly well, acting as a versatile mixture of Buster support and selfish crit Servant, and she doesn’t necessarily have to commit to either even within a single battle. Whether with the support or others or left to her own devices, Himiko is capable, being able to dish out damage and endure NP’s in pinch moments, while enduring a fair sum of damage. She may not reap the benefits of an exceptionally focused kit, but she’s not going to be a bad option for the majority of single-target quests. Rath™ Seal of Approval.
Man, there’s something about the dude’s expression that I just like. Maybe I just like the “casual hitman” kind of characters anime throws out sometimes. Or I’m expecting him to scream “I AM THE STORM THAT IS APPROACHING” whenever he NP’s. It’s a mixed bag.
|Base Atk||1,570||Base HP||1,899|
|Max Atk||9,425||Max HP||11,873|
|Grail Atk||11,412||Grail HP||14,396|
As almost seems typical now for Japanese 4* Sabers, Saito doesn’t have a bad stat spread, but he’s certainly a little weak in the stat total area. When you’re only slightly better off than Nero and Hokusai Saber, that certainly shows. Being very middle-of-the-pack in both HP and Attack, neither is really a weakness for Saito, but hey, still kind of weak on the stat department in general.
So far as Passives go, Saito is slightly deviant from what’s typical for Sabers. No surprise on the low-ranking Magic Resistance considering his time period, but he also has a neat bonus of Independent Action, giving him a minor boost to his crit damage. For an Arts-focused Saber, it’s better than Riding, at least. Not bad.
So how keen is Saito’s blade? On one hand, he has a form without equal:
However, he also has an ugly side to his swordplay:
Saito, despite being probably the least complex in the series of Arts crit ST 4* Sabers (ranging from Saberlot, to Yagyu, to Summer Medb, to Hokusai Saber), manages to keep efficiency in his simplicity. He hits hard. He’s focused on just ensuring his damage is high, he has a defensive tool down without having other parts of his kit tied into it, and most importantly his NP spam is one of the most absurd in the game, allowing him to keep his NP rolling on itself even with poor card luck or low star supply. When he has those things, Saito is just downright vicious. He might face stiff competition from Hokusai Saber due to the sizable gap in NP damage, but frankly Hokusai Saber is also absurdly good in the present Arts-focused meta, so it’s no real drawback to be playing second fiddle to her. Saito is just superb. Rath™ Seal of Approval with a recommendation.
Hah, I have to say it’s a pleasant surprise he’s in the game. His status as a 1* Archer is fitting considering in lore he can only manifest by leeching off Nobu’s Saint Graph, and on top of that his kit is, well, I’ll get into that.
Also with his ascension forms he’s technically the first swimsuit male that isn’t a costume, so go him. Pako just knows how to draw the hot boys.
|Base Atk||930||Base HP||1,512|
|Max Atk||5,116||Max HP||7,563|
|Grail Atk||7,949||Grail HP||11,659|
While it’s hard to assess for a 1* Servant...it’s needless to say Nobukatsu’s base stats are awful. For his rarity, he has absolutely abysmal attack after the Archer 0.95x attack modifier is accounted for, being roughly second-worst in the game, after Mozart, and roughly even with Mata Hari. His HP is “high” to compensate, but remains still barely above average for a bronze Servant, which again, is still poor in general.
Grails might be able compensate for that, but his low stats to begin with means the scaling from them is pretty terrible. So yeah, Bronze life in a nutshell. At least he has cheap levelling/ascension and free NP5.
For Passives, Nobukatsu has the standard you’d want from the Archer class. As in, both Magic Resistance and Independent Action, but at pretty low ranks. Neither will ever be of much use to him, but they’re there, at least.
So how useful is Nobukatsu in actuality? On one hand, he performs a noble duty for the sake of his team:
However, he also performs that sacrifice for a damn good reason:
As with almost all bronze Servants, Nobukatsu is hard to measure. Usually bronzes can struggle to perform and compete with higher-rarity equivalents unless they particularly have useful niches to balance out (such as George’s taunt and durability, or Chen Gong’s farming capability). Thankfully, Nobukatsu is only competing with a fellow bronze for the position of dying on the job, and he does that exceptionally well. By applying all the benefits of his kit then doing a ghetto “Battle Suit Swap”, Nobukatsu can give all the advantages of his existence while not actually existing. Simply scattered, reduced to atoms.
But in all seriousness, outside of the suicide lead with Arash and setting up a super-buffed Nobu, he’s not too spectacular. It’s good those two niches are fairly versatile, especially when 2 of the 3 Nobus are in a “Universal” class. With the kind of buffs Nobukatsu throws out, even the mess that is Maou Nobu can put in some hurt. He’s practically free, costs little to raise and deploy, and he is both fun to use and kind of hot, so I see no issues there. Rath™ Seal of Approval.
GudaGuda Honnouji is eternal. That’s all I’ve been taught in the past week. We’ll eventually have Nobunaga’s entire family line in the game, as well as enough Shinsengumi members to participate in a game of Among Us.
Frankly, I’m losing hype for events and just anticipating for the next chapter in the main story. Casturia as well as Beryl’s lines about his Lostbelt were too much of a tease, and I’m expecting some crazy shit whenever it lands. Judging by DW’s habits with delaying and lengthening each Lostbelt, I’m gonna say at the end of 2021?
Please don’t actually be that.