[MS] Escaflowne Tactics

Escaflowne is the eponymous mecha of the Vision of Escaflowne TV series.  In this show the Mechs are called Guymelefs, they are clockwork machinery that resemble giant suits of armor which makes a great aesthetic for this fantasy setting.  The Guymelefs are powered by the crystalized hearts of dead dragons, Escaflowne is a one of a kind Guymelef used by the royal family of Fanelia and pilot by our hero Van Fanel. Below are some tactics if you plan on using them in a Gundam Tabletop game or a SRW Tabletop game with the MechaStellar ruleset.

Van meets our protagonist Hitomi, an ordinary track and field athelete from our world since his dragon hunt mysteriously transports him to Earth.  Hitomi is blessed with a premonition which ends up saving Van’s life, and is then transported back to his world, Gaea.  From there they embark on a journey where Van tries to get Hitomi home, even though exiled from his destroyed kingdom.  Hitomi’s visions are integral to the story and often help Van and Escaflowne deal with the invisible Alseides and often comes at a crucial point saving Van’s life.  Later she teaches Van how to feel or sense where the Alseides are, turning him into a fearsome opponent.

Escaflowne is unique in the show for featuring a transformation mode.  In this case it can change from a giant battle suit of knightly armor into a roaring dragon clutching its crystalline dragon heart in its hand while the cape turns into wings.  Watching Escaflowne actually caused us to revise the Transform ability.  Previously it was a flat penalty to Melee but we opted to instead make it a penalty to Melee defense, since we see Escaflowne actually wield it’s sword with a terrible zeal cutting down enemies while transformed.

Later in the show we discover there is a blood pact between Van and Escaflowne, the two become psychically linked allowing Escaflowne unmatched mobility but at severe cost.  Every cut or wound inflicted on Escaflowne is also matched on Van.  We reflected this on the sheet by letting him have +1 Block, something we rarely give out without a “no stacking clause” but at the cost of losing an Action if Escaflowne takes 1000+ damage in a single turn to represent a serious wound.

Lastly, we round out the unit with Van’s pilot skills.  Quest for Vengeance is a renamed Driven or Hot Blooded, which reflects his desire to seek vengeance for the death and destruction the Zaibach empire inflicted on his home kingdom of Fanelia.  Close Combat Expert adds even more Melee power on his turn.  In our next post we’ll see that while Escaflowne is far more offense oriented the Scherazade is a more balanced unit with equally strong offense and defense.

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