Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Google+ Share on Reddit Share on Pinterest Share on Linkedin Share on Tumblr Arc System Works’ (ASW) BLAZBLUE CROSS TAG BATTLE (BBTAG) is shaping up to be an impressive crossover fighting game due to the slew of news surrounding it this month. First up, people had the chance to play the game’s first demo at certain events worldwide. These included New York Comic Con (NYCC) and RTX London. At these events, some professional players caught a glimpse of the game’s simplified control scheme and mechanics. Furthermore, players had the opportunity to test the initial seven revealed characters to see what they were capable of. Speaking of characters, this brings up my second and most exciting point: character reveals. This month has seen a substantial amount of additions to BBTAG’s roster. ASW has revealed a total of six characters with two accompanying trailers. The first one, released at RTX London and as seen above, features BLAZBLUE’s (BB) Rachel Alucard and Hazama, along with RWBY’s Weiss Schnee. This trailer is by far the most breathtaking reveal since the game’s teaser. Finally, Weiss can join her partner Ruby! Even though it’s only a snippet, Weiss’ gameplay looks very poised — it’s as if ASW took elements from her character short. BLAZBLUE CROSS TAG BATTLE: Why RWBY Fits Into The Crossover Aside from the remarkable reveal, the second trailer for this month unveiled three characters that couldn’t be more obvious than the ones from last month. It features BB’s Noel Vermillion, PERSONA 4 ARENA’S (P4A) Chie Satonaka, and UNDER NIGHT IN-BIRTH’S (UNI) Waldstein. For this trailer, Waldstein came as a surprise as not everyone knew of his ties to deuteragonist Linne’s organization. Mostly everyone, including me, expected Seth — UNI’s speedy assassin and the protagonist’s rival. Despite this, Waldstein sort of fits into the trailer with Chie and Noel. All three characters are tritagonists in some way. Chie is the third founder of P4’s Investigation Team while Noel is somewhat related to BB brothers Ragna and Jin. It’s only peculiar in Waldstein’s case because a big burly grappler isn’t usually revealed as a third important character. Nonetheless, it’s good to see that another unique playstyle has been added to the roster aside from Rachel and Hazama. From left to right: Hakumen (BB), Yukiko (P4A), Seth (UNI), and Blake (RWBY) Nonetheless, with how ASW is revealing characters, the next trailer will most likely consist of the fourth most important characters. BB is the only exception, however. Rachel and Hazama are its fourth and fifth most important characters. As such, along with Seth, my predictions for next trailer are Hakumen (BB), Yukiko Amagi (P4A), and Blake Belladonna (RWBY) — the latter whom I can’t wait for! Additionally, some future reveals can already be accounted for. All four RWBY girls are one, and another is the Investigation Team, as the whole team was in P4A. For the latter, I hope ASW adds some PERSONA 3 characters. As for UNI and BB, it’s quite hard to gauge as BB has a lot of characters while UNI only has twenty so far. Despite this, you can expect most of BB’s first title’s cast (nearly half are in BBTAG) to be shoe-ins before ASW gets to the more interesting characters. Speaking of interesting characters, I’ve come up with my own list of potential future BBTAG candidates. Let’s take a look! Note: Read with caution! This article contains character spoilers for certain series featured in this crossover game. Alright, Who’s Next? — Character Possibilities in the Future Character select screen, taken from NYCC, showcasing BBTAG’s seven initial characters. Before I begin, I’d like to lay down some ground rules for this character list. For clarity and brevity, the focus will be on ten characters. Specifically and for fairness, this list will contain two characters from each featured series in BBTAG. As you can see from the character select screen in the photo above, there are four main titles. With the addition of the “ETC” section, that sort of makes five but not quite. The “ETC” section is just a placeholder for more characters, possibly guests or DLC. As such, I may add two additional favorites or even guest characters from another series to my list. Furthermore, any previously mentioned shoe-ins won’t be on this list. So, this means you won’t see any choices from P4’s Investigation Team, Seth, the rest of team RWBY, or Hakumen. So, let’s begin! Disclaimer: This character list is by no means representative of who ASW officially chooses to reveal for its game. As such, you should take this list lightly as it’s only for fun and speculative purposes! Also, character spoilers will persist. So, read with caution! 1. Kokonoe, The Genius Cat Scientist (BB) If there is a catgirl I’d play in BLAZBLUE, it would have to be Kokonoe Mercury. She is BB’s genius cat scientist, and a renowned one at that due to her contributions to the science organization Sector Seven. Kokonoe is also the creator of Tager, her subordinate who carries out missions for her. Furthermore, she’s the daughter of samurai cat Jubei and The Great Mage Nine, two of the game’s legendary Six Heroes. As such, you’d think she’d be pretty powerful considering that both of her parents are legendary heroes right? Despite being a scientist, Kokonoe is quite the formidable fighter thanks to her numerous contraptions and tools she brings to the battlefield. Her Drive (BB’s one button mechanic) allows her to summon mechanical devices called Gravitons anywhere on the screen. She can use them to either propel or repel opponents or even use them in conjunction with some of her special attacks. For example, in the video above, you can see Matoi use Gravitons to propel Kokonoe’s fireballs towards them. Additionally, Kokonoe can teleport to a Graviton’s location to escape pesky situations (trapped in a corner, etc.). Nonetheless, I wouldn’t mind having a Graviton-styled assist in BBTAG to pull in those annoying runaway characters! 2. Tohru Adachi, The Egocentric Police Dick (P4A) My second choice goes to Tohru Adachi, a PERSONA 4 (P4) villain who also starred in P4A’s sequel, ULTIMAX. Adachi is possibly the most realistic P4 villain to be conceived. His famous “the world is full of sh*t” line just emphasizes how realistic he is. Adachi views the world as a bore with nothing to gain in life, which is something most unsuccessful adults can relate to. As such, he wishes to plunge the world into total despair, and almost did in P4. Similarly, BB’s main villain Terumi, who masquerades as Hazama, has the same goal. Because of this, Adachi feels like a good fit in BBTAG. He can potentially accompany Hazama and whatever his sinister deeds are in story mode. Furthermore, Adachi has a pretty interesting playstyle. He has brutal attacks, as seen in the video above, that you can use in combination with two of his super attacks that grant him buffs. These buffs either inflict more damage or induce a status ailment (poison, fear, rage) to his opponents. No doubt with these deadly attacks, you can always mangle Yu Narukami, the goody-goody P4 protagonist whom I despise because of how good he is. Persona 3: A Guide Through Life and Death Using Tarot Cards PART 1 3. Gordeau, Snatcher (UNI) This third choice is one highly anticipated UNDER NIGHT IN-BIRTH character. His name is Gordeau, and his playstyle is so ridiculously good that there should be no reason for him not to be included in BBTAG. Why? Well, when North America released UNI in 2015, Gordeau dominated the competitive scene as one of three top tier characters. He’s top tier because he can fight at any range he pleases. Even in story mode, he’s indomitable because he’s regarded as the strongest EXS (UNI’s fancy term for energy) user. At long range, Gordeau utilizes Devourer, his massive invisible scythe he materializes out of thin air, to pull enemies in for combos. He can also perform the dreaded Grim Reaper (Grim Reapah) to blow unwary jumpers out of the air. It’s a ridiculous move that has to cover ninety percent of the screen all around him, and it’s fast too. Despite the long-range game, Gordeau is more menacing when he’s up close. Get hit or block, and you’ll still have your soul assimilated from his command grab, which is why his EXS ability is called Snatcher. So, if you’re looking for another scythe wielder to join your Ruby Rose team in BBTAG, then Gordeau is the man for you! 4. Cinder Fall, Sacrifice (RWBY) With Hazama’s reveal as the first villain to grace BBTAG, I thought I’d further simplify matters by adding a few of my favorite villains (see choice two) as well. So meet RWBY’s Cinder Fall, who is inspired by and alludes to CINDERELLA but evil. In RWBY, all characters relate to fairytale, folktale, or mythical characters. Cinder’s allusions to Cinderella, besides the name, can be little obvious. One example is her crest. It resembles two high-heels placed together that form a seemingly broken heart (implying she’s evil). Another example is the glass slippers she wears in her unofficial first appearance in the first episode. Speaking of glass, Cinder uses the substance frequently in her attacks. She can masterfully shape Dust (RWBY’s fancy term for energy) into glass for projectile attacks or to fashion her trademark obsidian blades. Her blades can also form together into a bow, which Cinder uses to fire explosive arrows. As if this wasn’t enough, Cinder can also cast fire-based attacks thanks to gaining the Fall Maiden’s powers. Nevertheless, it’d be a treat to see how ASW will design Cinder’s playstyle. There’s just no way she wouldn’t be a good addition to BBTAG given the plethora of skills and abilities I just described. I just hope her playstyle is as explosive as her arrows! 5. Valkenhayn R. Hellsing, The Silver Wolf (BB) So far, the only animal-esque character on this list is Kokonoe, so why not add another one. Valkenhayn R. Hellsing, Rachel Alucard’s werewolf butler, is my second BLAZBLUE choice for BBTAG. As a lycanthrope, Valkenhayn has the ability to transform into a wolf as seen in his CONTINUUM SHIFT debut trailer. His Drive, Werewolf, allows him to freely switch between his human and wolf form. As such, Valkenhayn fights with a deadly combination of beastly wolf strikes and his torrent of elegant kicks. Story-wise, he’s not a super important character like his master Rachel — at least not during BB’s present timeline. Valkenhayn’s backstory, however, is pretty incredible. He’s another member of the Six Heroes (see Kokonoe’s section) who fought against the Black Beast. Furthermore, the sheer fact that he fought a creature of pure elemental magic without a weapon compared to the other heroes brings another level of badassery. With Rachel revealed in BBTAG, there is a possible chance we can see this suave yet ferocious gentleman return to aid her with whatever Hazama is planning in story mode. If anything, you could always make that manly team of buff yet fierce old men with UNI’s Waldstein! 6. Labrys, Yasogami’s Steel Council President (P4A) At some point, ASW will have to add a robot character in. So why not P4A’s Labrys, who made her debut in the same game. At first glance, she may look like a normal high school girl, but she is very much a mechanical maiden. Specifically, Labrys is a 5th generation Anti-Shadow Weapon, or a special android with the ability to develop human emotions. As such, Labrys’ P4A backstory turns out to be a sad one. To test if she could develop a Persona (manifested being), she had to destroy her sister units. However, it’s not until the actual events of P4A, when she gets trapped inside the TV World that she acquires her Persona. It’s all thanks to her newfound younger sister, some of the P3 crew, and the Investigation Team. While Labrys may not look like much with just a giant ax as a weapon, she is still a deadly fighter nonetheless. Damage is the name of her game as the more she attacks with her ax, the more damaging it becomes. This is dependent on her ax power-up mechanic, indicated by five varying degrees of colors. The only trade-off is that to build higher ax levels, she must frequently swing her ax around. Still, Labrys would make a great BBTAG addition as currently there aren’t any robot-type characters yet. GAMERS! and the Ultimate Love Pentagon 7. Yuzuriha, Falling Flowers (UNI) My second UNI character of choice is Yuzuriha. She has a very interesting character mechanic revolved around her battoujutsu (quick-sword drawing) stance. Yuzuriha can enter her stance when she executes certain attacks. Afterwards, you need to hold that button for her to stay in stance form. During her stance, she can further execute extra battou slashes and other special attacks in conjunction with various stance maneuvers (teleports, dodge, etc.). However, there is a drawback. You can’t use the same button twice during her stance until that button’s stance mark (these are under her health bar) is restored. As such, mastering Yuzuriha is difficult, but very rewarding. Storywise, she’s not too important. Her ancestors had ties to Linne’s organization, but that has been long since broken. Her sword, the Iris Blade (Yuzuriha affectionately calls it Ayame), is the only notable object from the organization that Yuzuriha’s ancestors kept. Also, Yuzuriha is friends with Hyde, but I doubt this would make her a possible BBTAG addition. I’d say she’s more worthy in terms of her intricate stance system and fascinating teleportation sword-drawing playstyle. Along with BB’s Kokonoe, it’d be great to see another teleporting character deal with the likes of zoners such as Rachel. 8. Pyrrha Nikos, Shine (RWBY) Meet Pyrrha Nikos, the “Wonder Woman” of RWBY. Well, not really — she looks the part though. The Greek hero Achilles actually inspires her design. Monty Oum, RWBY’s creator, possibly drew the idea specifically from “Achilles on Skyros,” where the Greek hero disguised himself as a red-haired woman of the same name. As such, she really fits into team JNPR. All of Pyrrha’s teammates are also inspired by mythological figures that have disguised themselves as the opposite gender. Aesthetics aside, Pyrrha’s signature weapons, Miló and Akoúo̱, even resemble weapons Achilles used. Miló, Pyrrha’s xiphos, can extend into a javelin as well as transform into a rifle. Akoúo̱ is just a Greek Dipylon shield, but seeing how proficient Pyrrha can be from the video above, she also uses it offensively. Besides the rifle obviously, Achilles uses a similar short sword, shield, and javelin during the Trojan War. Despite Pyrrha’s proficiency with her weapons, there’s still more to her. She also can control magnetism. Fairy Tales, Folk Tales, Mythology, Oh My! Is the Symbolism in RWBY Overkill? Although Pyrrha doesn’t use magnetism much, she had to in her fight with a fully powerful Cinder. The battle may have led to her demise (Achilles heel irony), but it shows that she’s definitely one of the more powerful RWBY characters. As such, with her magnetism and her combat prowess, she’d make a great BBTAG addition. Despite her death, it’s possible for Pyrrha to be included because both Ruby and Weiss are in their pre-Volume four attire. Also, I’d imagine her playstyle will at least involve some magnetic shield or spear throwing — then again, she has a rifle. Anyhow, if Cinder is also added, I’m sure some Pyrrha fans will be delighted for some vengeance. Even More Fates — The Possible “ETC” Characters 9. Qrow Branwen, Bad Luck Charm (RWBY) Qrow Branwen, who is Ruby and Yang Xiao Long’s drunk uncle, is the next best candidate after all of team RWBY, some of JNPR, and possibly even Cinder are added in. As a seasoned Hunstman and the only other scythe wielder (Ruby is the other one), Qrow is very proficient at fighting. He’s also the one to have trained and inspired Ruby to make her own weapon. His weapon’s base form, however, is actually that of a great sword. Like many RWBY weapons, it can also transform into a gun. His sword takes the form of a double-barreled shotgun. His Semblance, or RWBY ability, is a unique one. It’s misfortune, and it’s always active whether he likes it or not. As such, Qrow keeps his distance from allies or loved ones since he doesn’t want bad luck to befall them. Furthermore, he can seemingly shapeshift into a crow. I can totally see Qrow using his sword and scythe attacks in tandem with his shotgun blasts. The problem, however, is how would one design misfortune as a game mechanic? It’s also highly unlikely that his bird form would be incorporated as well. Now that I think about it, Qrow might’ve been an unfortunate choice. However, it’d be cool to have another scythe wielder. I swear anime fighters just have too many sword characters. 10. Sol Badguy, Flame of Corruption (GUILTY GEAR) The best is often saved for last. So what better way than to close this potential BBTAG character list than to have the legendary Sol Badguy (real name Frederick) of GUILTY GEAR (GG) fame rock on in. Sol is many things: a bounty hunter, a former scientist, a human-turned Gear, Ky Kiske’s eternal rival, a fan of British rock band Queen (his name alludes to the lead singer), a former Holy Knight, and the wielder of Fireseal. That’s a lot, but all you need to know is that he’s one badass fighter with a brazen yet laidback attitude. Oh and he sets opponents on fire (hence Fireseal). Additionally, Sol can tap into his Gear power to become a dragon-like humanoid with increased strength, speed, and power. Pretty metal right? Unfortunately, it doesn’t see much use in actual matches, but it does come with one hardcore theme! Despite ASW’s statement of no plans to add GG characters, one can still dream that at least Sol may have a chance as DLC or in a future version of BBTAG. If so, then Ragna players may also have the opportunity to acquire their vengeance as well!What’s Next? — More Intersecting Fates Are On Their Way! So, there you have it! This is my potential BBTAG character list. Now it’s just a matter of time to see who’s added and who isn’t. Also, feel free to leave your own predictions and reasons on who may join the roster in the comments section; looking forward to reading them! For now, I’ll try to await the Blake reveal next month! Featured image courtesy of ASW.