The Modern Magus Magazine
Pray tell, to this one careless muse of mere graphs and gachas, what makes a single human upon our lonely Earth meet the mettle to become what one, nay, all mankind would call, “A cute girl”? Is it the fairness of the form? The succinctness of their style? The shapeliness of their silhouette? Or is it, in fact, whether they are voiced by the Diva of the Japanese Animation industry, Sawashiro?
I, my friends, will say as much now - all are wrong. What makes a character cute is determined by a single factor, and that single factor only - whether or not they can say “Boku wa kimi no Ken”, and have the aforementioned ‘sword’ hidden underneath the attire of a weird sailor outfit bunnygirl stripper attire. Also, make that ‘sword’ prehensile. Because why the hell not. I’m thirsty for it, boiz.
So uh, Christmas. Sorry Jesus, I think I spoiled your holiday’s sanctity in two paragraphs.
Astolfo joins our party once more, and this time he’s not doing the riding, unless you’re into it. While the moon aesthetic and bunny-ear headband may seem weird for what is essentially a 100% serious servant form (well, as serious as Astolfo can be), he is one of the few heroes in all legend who canonically went to the Moon. So unless you really want Kaguya-hime or Chang’e or something to be a bunnygirl (I wouldn’t complain), Astolfo does fit the role.
Shame he isn’t flying nude atop a sword though, I had faith in Riyo’s character design skills.
|Base Atk||1,807||Base HP||2,089|
|Max Atk||11,694||Max HP||14,248|
|Grail Atk||12,801||Grail HP||15,609|
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Saber Astolfo’s base statline is, shockingly enough, not as awful as his Rider form. While his attack stat is more-or-less middle of the pack for 5* Sabers, he has a reasonably high HP stat to compensate, and he could certainly do worse, considering he straight outclasses both Nero Bride and Benienma in terms of base stats (though the latter has a boatload of passives to compensate-dechi). In turn, Astolfo gets dwarfed by the huge list of Sabers with just...abnormally high base stat total. Mordred’s bases just crush him in both fields, and the bishounen combo of Sigurd and Arthur are only a few hundred points of HP behind him in bulk despite possessing massively higher attack stats.
But hey, that’s “most famous European heroes” privilege, it’s natural Astolfo would get dwarfed by them.
For Passives, Astolfo has it clean and simple - A-rank Magic Resistance as is standard for any Saber that isn’t half-baked, and a very respectable A-rank Riding, giving him a 10% all-purpose boost to damage, stargen, and NP gain for his main card type, Quicks. Can’t go wrong with that, can you?
Astolfo may bear his sword for all to see, but does what lies below the surface match? Well, on one hand, he’s got an Excalibur:
On the other hand, his ‘sword’ may actually be a Chunchunmaru:
On the whole, Astolfo is a marked improvement from his Rider self. Instead of being woefully bad, he’s just boringly mediocre. He has some useful tools and interesting synergy to his kit, but the numbers he pulls to the table just aren’t good enough to really distinguish him from his competitors. While he can certainly perform sufficiently when given his double Skadi support, he doesn’t take it anywhere near the performance of other Quick Sabers, or Quick servants in general. Take him if you want him, but if you’re seeking a bearable ST damage dealer to compliment a Skadi team, you’re better leaving him on the moon.
I will let you know this - there are two types of men in the world - those who appreciate stockings wrapped around a fine pair of legs (and I don’t mean the Christmas kind of stocking), and savages with no sense of culture.
By natural deduction, this makes Nightingale Santa the best servant to date. That final art had best be giving you goosebumps, too. Maybe getting ill during the Xmas season won’t be so bad…
|Base Atk||1,643||Base HP||1,772|
|Max Atk||9,858||Max HP||11,080|
|Grail Atk||11,936||Grail HP||13,434|
I may sound like a broken record stating as such, but Nightingale Santa has a good base statline within a sea of servants with silly base stat totals compared to the norm. She has a high attack stat without gimping her HP too much compared to most 4*’s, but when you get compared to the likes of Ashwatthama or Tristan, your stats look fairly pathetic regardless of how they are in the grand scheme of things.
In terms of Passives, Nightingale does get dealt a neat hand, though. A+ Independant Action gives her a higher-end version of the typical Archer crit buff, but she also comes packing with the EX Madness Enhancement from her Berserker form, giving a hefty 12% boost to that...singular Buster card. I’m convinced now, one of the devs loves buffing a singular Buster card to hell and back.
She also comes along with C-rank Magic Resistance, just for that touch of usually-unnoticeable passive debuff resistance. But it’s pretty run-of-the-mill for Archers.
So how good, in fact, is Nightingale Santa? On one hand, she’s hot like the Christmas fireplace:
On the other hand, she’s gone cold turkey:
In conclusion, Nightingale is something like a series of threads which, while quality on their own, knit a bit of a monstrosity of a stocking with no semblance of purpose. Her utility and supportive benefits might be useful to someone, but the other functions of her kit don’t meld well enough for me to really say I can see her contributing in farming or challenge quests. Best way of putting it is that she’s not bad, but pulls herself in so many direction she doesn’t end up doing anything with enough competence to be considered more than a niche supportive option. But hey, she still has welfare AOE offence and good crit damage, so she’s getting the Rath™ Seal of Approval.
Fine Ladies and Gentlemen, thusly concludes my humble edition of the Modern Magus Magazine, or MMM for short. Whether you find yourself bearing through harsh winds, the conclusion of the MMM’s slightly perverted cousin, NNN, shoddy Christmas seasons or 29-hour Maintenance, I would ask you to remember two things:
The Spirit of Christmas, and lostbelt5iscomingnextmonthohlordthestory’sgonnagodown.