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MMM - Gregarious Grace-Gifted Goddess Glamours Gargantuan Gaff (Mandala Gacha 2)

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The Modern Magus Magazine

It’s been a whiiiiiile…

Except not in the slightest. Shock and horror, the enemy-only extremely attractive Servant wasn’t enemy-only for long. And as a result, I only got a 1-week vacation between MMM’s.

Darn it. And I had to spend a 3-figure sum of money to satisfy my crippling Aoi Yuuki addiction.

NA Release Date: 12/2022
Introduction

You’ve got to love how you roll for the gigantic extra-thicc oni goddess character who drew your eye during Mandala, and instead you pull a lamia loli. Now, I’ll be the first to say that both are good, but it sounds like quite a measure just for Aoi Yuuki to flex her vocal range.

That, and the virgin-killer sweater. You have to respect Raita for throwing his fetishes straight onto FGO Servants no hesitation...maybe I should become a FGO artist.

Servant Data
Saber

5

5
Magic Resistance A

Increase your Debuff Resist by 20%.

Riding B+

Increase your Quick Card effectiveness by 9%.

Dragon Kin EX

Increase own Buster Card effectiveness by 12%.
Apply Damage Cut by 200 to self.

Serpent Goddess Core A

Apply Damage Plus 250 to self.
Increase own Buff Removal Resist by 20%.

Overview

I can practically hear a victory fanfare. After an eternity (well, it feels like one), the peak of the Saber class attack stat has been breached. And let me tell you, it’s not even because Ibuki’s own contribution to her stats is way better than her runner ups, Arthur and Sigurd. It’s just because she’s the first SSR Saber to have a full focus on Attack on her stat block (and solid parameters to back it up).

Now Ibuki’s immense attack doesn’t come without a drawback, which is poor HP, for a Saber. That turns out to just be average HP overall. So her stat block is still very strong.

But Ibuki just doesn’t quit, with her passive lineup bolstering her performance immensely. Her Magic Resistance and Riding are both quite standard for her class, providing her with reliable resistance to debuffs and a solid boost to her sole Quick card, but she possesses two unique and strong passives alongside it:

First of the two is Dragon Kin, granting Ibuki both a huge boost to her primary card type, Buster, and a significant passive 200 damage cut. While the offensive boost is likely the main draw, a passive 200 damage cut is nothing to sniff at. To word it differently, for every hit Ibuki takes and survives, she essentially has 200 more effective HP. Meaning her displayed bulk is actually far better than it seems, and it’ll be more effective with additional defensive buffs.

Then second is Serpent Goddess Core, your traditional variant on the super-Divinity passive, giving Ibuki a large passive damage up buff and also 20% passive buff removal resistance.

Buff removal resist may be one of those perks that is niche until you actually really need it, but it’s very neat to have passively - merely having a decent chance of ignoring many of the gauge-break buff cleanses or boss-only buff removal skills can be a lifesaver. Obviously not reliable or dependable, but it might come in clutch.

So Ibuki solidly falls into that blessed category of great base stats, insane passives.

NP Generation
Servant Skills
Noble Phantasm
Conclusion

So how much of a treasure is Ibuki in practice? On one hand, she’s cutting down her foes like grass:

Ibuki’s general card damage is very strong. While she doesn’t hit the absurd multipliers of Superman Orion or similar, she finds it easy to start touching the 6-digit crit numbers with Merlin support, even without class advantage. Her BBBAQ card set really aids in having a solid selection of Buster cards at any time, while both the star bomb and critical damage buff built into her kit provides her most of the tools necessary to have a burst turn and demolish fools.

Her offensive strength doesn’t stop at the basic cards. Kusanagi is a NP which fills a very high-demand niche, and unlike the only other AOE Servant filling that niche, Ibuki doesn’t have class disadvantage versus half of the common classes in the game. This is in addition to the high damage output of her NP, at least for a Servant with no Interlude / Strengthening multiplier. She’s likely going to be very useful to pull out for Challenge Quests.

Ibuki may not have any flashy defensive options, but she’s passively quite durable. With her passive 200 damage cut and Defense buff in Eightfold Wave Surge, she can shrug off regular attacks quite effectively, meanwhile her solid Debuff Resistance and Buff Removal Resist gives her some chance at ignoring annoying mechanics often thrown into more difficult fights.

She can do consistent farming. While her damage numbers may occasionally not be high enough (even with class advantage) to do a ‘true’ 3-turn clear, Ibuki can assuredly NP over a 3-turn period with the right setup, and there are some circumstances (such as farming nodes with 1-2 enemies on a Wave, or just a lot of Assassins/Berserkers) where her independence from refund is very convenient. Her gauge charger and strong base NP damage also makes her a good option for 1 AOE, 1 ST, 1 Support farming setups, as she can quite easily put out 2 NP’s with 2 gauge charger supports available.

However, she can also be seen as an overblown gardening tool:

While her defensive options versus more pedestrian damage are great, Ibuki doesn’t possess a personal defensive option to deal with NP damage, or just some monster with huge offensive buffs hitting the Buster Crit button. For a Buster Servant, this doesn’t typically prove an issue due to the omnipresence of Merlin in Buster-oriented compositions, but it does mean Merlin or someone similar has to be around for her regardless.

Despite her fairly large focus on crit damage offense, Ibuki doesn’t have a full consistent tool to provide herself with stars. Her stargen isn’t good enough to fill that role, her star bomb is largely one-off, and she lacks any Star Focus buff to improve her consistency. This isn’t too large of a weakness when she’s being supported by Casters, as Saber star weight will mostly pull her through, but it does mean her supports will be forced to run at least one 2030, and it’s risky to depend on her critical damage when alongside Reines, as the support in question is assuredly going to steal her stars.

Ibuki is something of a long-awaited addition to the Saber class, and frankly one that should have arrived a long time ago. We’ve been lacking a consistent, lazy “just pop this dude in with a 50% gauge CE and pop it” kind of Servant for Sabers, and Ibuki largely fills that role and beyond. Offensively, she’s pretty powerful. You’ll not be disappointed when pulling her out for Challenge Quests, simply due to how many annoying mechanics she at least has a chance to overcome or downright ignore. Then again her ability to fill in for farming in the Saber class, one that has historically had issues with convenient farmers, especially on the Arts and Quick side of things.

Ibuki does come with her fair share of issues, both in her Challenge Quest and Farming performance, but the Challenge Quest side of things is quite easy to fix with proper support. Nothing can really compensate for the lack of an LB Kaleido, I must admit. That doesn’t stop Ibuki from contributing to farm comps with two 50% gauge charger AOEs where you can battlesuit swap in a second 50% gauge charger support, however. Regardless of your collection, Ibuki will make things more convenient.

Oh, also, she’s hot. Boom, Rath™ Seal of Approval. It’s really that easy.

Outro

That’s a miniature MMM for you all, hopefully not provided too late to stop (or allow) your gacha splurges. Somehow I feel like Christmas and New Year is going to put me through the wringer for outputting reviews, but I’ve just got to stick to it.

After all, I have Yuuki Aoi making an onee-san voice as a voluptuous oni goddess in a sweater. You couldn’t possibly ask for more comfort in your life.

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