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MMM - Calculable Comeuppance of Courteous Courtier Calls Calamity to Chaldean Chap Craze (GudaGuda 2021 Gacha 2)

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The Modern Magus Magazine

Wait a minute, this isn’t a Pretender in a banner with every single male NPC Servant shown in the event?

We’ve been tricked, backstabbed, and, quite possibly, bamboozled by DW, and this cannot stand, so I am officially making a highly-influential Reddit post to show off my grievances. Surely the multi-million dollar Japanese company can’t ignore my influence on a western cat meme sharing site!

Well, even if my prediction of the banner for the second of the event was off (I had reasons to think it’d be a Pretender, honest!), there’s a new Servant to assess nonetheless. Let’s get on with it.

GUDA2021 Pickup 2
NA Release Date: 11/2023
Introduction

Come to think of it, even though I thought it rare for dudes in FGO to get a rarity-bumped alt, it has happened a few times already - Cu Zerker, Saber Diarmuid, Romulus, Muramasa if we’re really splitting hairs over EMIYA. But I guess the fact Ryouma isn’t as big a fan favourite as the others makes it a bit more shocking to me.

Well, those with his welfare form best nab a doppelganger while you can.

Servant Data
Lancer

5

5
Magic Resistance C+

Increase your Debuff Resist by 16%.

Riding EX

Increase your Quick Card effectiveness by 12%.

Morph (Orochi) A

Increase own Critical Rate Resist by 10%.
Increase own Critical Strength by 10%.

Overview

So far as base stats go, Ryouma’s Lancer form sits far on the defensive end of things. With the tied 5th best HP stat and 3rd worst Atk stat, his rankings don’t exactly seem too great, but it’s worth remembering that the SSR Lancer pool is filled with high BST Servants in the high HP, low Atk area, particularly in Ereshkigal, Bradamante, and Artoria Lancer, so the results are a little skewed against him.

The man’s Attack stat is perfectly reasonable for his high HP, especially when the Lancer class’s 1.05x Attack modifier is coming in with a clutch little bump relative to other classes.

As for passives, Ryouma comes with a modest but respectable set - his Magic Resistance gives him a decent chance of shrugging off debuffs as they come, his EX-rank Riding gives a sizeable boost to his sole Quick card, and his unique passive, Morph (Orochi) A grants a pretty solid 10% Critical Damage and Critical Resist buff, which in turn makes him essentially immune to random crits from most enemies unbuffed.

While he’s packing nothing exceptional off the bat, and could probably do with a bigger Attack stat, Ryouma is hardly off to a bad start in his bases.

NP Generation
Servant Skills
Noble Phantasm
Conclusion

So how is Ryouma in practice? Well, on one hand he and Oryou go together like Yin and Yang:

Ryouma makes for a good, if not exceptional farmer. At a minimum, he’s very competitive with existing Lancer farmers hanging around who aren’t called Melusine - he packs the best damage output available of the Arts AOE farmers, and even if his refund is somewhat mediocre, his 50% gauge charger compensates for it greatly. While his refund means he can’t truly just run Black Grail versus everything like some farmers can, all of the other Arts AOE Lancers generally can’t either, so he remains competitive.

For CQ scenarios, Ryouma is packing a respectable package. His critical damage buffs from his kit, while nothing amazing, are good enough to make his regular card damage formidable, and when put in combination with the powerful AOE damage his NP can put out, he can quite easily crush difficult content where AOE is the prerogative. Add in his very powerful Debuff Immunity / Buff Removal Resist combo and he makes a consistent option to tackle Challenge Quests.

But on the other hand, he can be left buried in the bottom of the ocean:

It might seem like a minor nitpick, but Ryouma for all the cool tricks in his kit to protect him from Challenge Quest cheese lacks a true hard defensive option. The 50% defense buff from his NP can be combined with a Waver / Reines defense buff to more or less take zero damage from NP’s if they don’t pierce defense, but in most cases you won’t be able to plan for that in mind. As such, Ryouma is going to be dependent on his support options to protect him from NP’s. It isn’t such a huge deal when Castoria has a dependable defensive NP, and most sorties with Ryouma will involve two of her, but it can present issues from time to time.

If there’s anything I can count on in the world, it’s that the power of wholesome couple ships will triumph over base gacha game waifu pandering. No offense meant to Okuni, but the number of one-off mostly forgettable female Servants added in events are a little too numerous for my liking.

To that end, Ryouma and Oryou’s Lancer form is a very solid Servant, with good farming applications and a couple of useful traits for CQ purposes alike. Their only true flaw, if any, is that they will always be in the shadow of Melusine unless a player specifically lacks the components for Melusine’s farming but has them for Arts farming. That dragon loli is simply too powerful to overcome with love alone.

In the same sense, Ryouma isn’t that much better than other Arts Lancer farmers present in the game prior to them - Vritra boasts her more consistent NP refund at a cost of notable worse NP damage, Fionn’s damage sucks but he’s actually accessible, and Summer Melt has to run kind of abnormal setups, with her damage output mostly dependent on NP level. None of them vastly outclass the other, though most of the time my own conclusion is I would take Ryouma for 9/10 of farming nodes, Vritra for the remaining 1/10.

I’m making all this long talk to make two points - One, all of the Arts SSR Lancers in this game feature dragon women and I find that an odd coincidence, and two, Ryouma is good but not breaking new territory. He’s desirable if you lack a Lancer to already fill a role, and good but probably not worth breaking your back over if not. Rath™ Seal of Approval.

Outro

Feels odd to be ambushed by a second gacha in an otherwise-unsuspecting event so quickly, and then again for a Servant class I...well, wasn’t expecting. The Avenger, Alter-Ego, and Foreigner classes all had additional members added to the roster added fairly swiftly after the first, so I was kind of hoping we would see another Pretender before the year ends.

I still have my hopes up, but I suppose they’re dashed for now, much like any hopes of the Male-Female ratio for this year recovering. Forget the female fanbase (well, don’t forget them, we respect women in this humble and unbiased publication), I want to see some hot guys added instead of cockteased, too!

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