Some Fragments don’t offer as much development as others, but that’s simply because the spotlight servant has been there long enough. At that point, it’s simply gauging how they are in their new environment and why they turned out like that. It’s best showcased through a day in their life, or an unusual occurrence that disrupts the routine.
That’s the case for some later Fragments, and Nobunaga was a good candidate for this pathway. The original fragment was simply a shooting competition between her, Billy, and Drake. I’ve since upgraded it to give a little more personal investment from Nobunaga through pride and reputation. With the focus now on her, I was able to add some small background pieces that applied to her, including a reference to a famous battle with some mountain monks. It’s also been bolstered by a few snippets of her interacting with others, namely her two competitors and her next-door-neighbor Okita.
I have also tuned their personalities a little closer to what they should be. Nobunaga’s more haughty and doesn’t like the idea of being shown up in a competition. Billy’s more enthusiastic as his lines and background imply, but I also gave him a more noticeable Western twang. It irked me DW skipped out on the iconic American dialect. Drake was spot on already, but a few lines of tweaking helped make it more obvious.
The circumstances of the competition also created an opportunity to introduce two new mechanics that hadn’t been shown in Fragments: craft coins and ascension.
I decided on coins as opposed to cards so that Illya & Kuro could remain unique with their class cards. Coins also have a more symbolic meaning to the organization, since Marisbilly’s wish was centered on wealth and prosperity. In addition, the coins offer a durable, easy-to-carry material that can store prana to activate their abilities.
Ascension was combined with leveling and skills for simplicity’s sake. It’s a broad stroke, but the idea is ascension process would automatically boost a servant’s saint graph to its next maximum amount, and increase their skill efficiency in the process. It’s sort of a mashup between Extella’s “Money is Power” system and Grand Order’s material requirements. Simply put, the quantum pieces are the real factor.
It was technically Jeanne’s fragment to begin with, but it felt very lacking compared to my new standard of writing. This now sets the precedent for the other upgrades the early Fragments will receive.
The original was pretty much Jeanne getting to sing without any substantial background basis. Yes, she sung the hymns with Saint George to cleanse Siegfried in the French singularity, but that was it. So I decided to bolster it further by having Laeticia be a rather good singer herself. Also allowed me to create a nice new flashback scene where the driver is more inspired by Jeanne’s voice rather than just her conviction and abilities.
Generally an easy fill in for the beginning fragment: Not too many feels, and just the proper amount of surprise. Jeanne’s looking to tone down her seriousness a bit, and her friends are willing to help her with that. The singing also makes it easier to break the ice and find something fun she could do as a hobby. Very straight forward without complex themes to allow the new reader to jump in rather easily after the prologue.
In addition to showing Marie hanging around with Jeanne more, as well as the extent of their established friendship, I also introduced the start of her relations to Arturia and her friends. It was left out before, but the revision let me properly place the teases like I do in later fragments. There are also now significantly more name drops so other servants’ presences are shown. Chaldea doesn’t seem so void anymore.
Quantum Pieces are introduced, though not thoroughly explained. There are also name drops for Memorial Essences and Craft Coins, which will be explained at later times as well. This is on purpose so the beginning doesn’t drag on harder than it needs to. We’re all Fate fans, so I know how annoying listening to world points can get at times. I at least try to blend them in and make them interesting to learn about.
Last note to my French readers: You’re not alone in your slight irritation of calling “Le Chevalier d’Eon” just “d’Eon”. Grammatically it’s wrong, but Fate doesn’t use his real name of Charles… so it makes quite a quandary especially considering Sanson’s first name is Charles. I’ll just be using d’Eon, and it will remain as much of a small irk.
The NSFW tumblr prune bot doesn’t do a very good job. Thanks to it chopping random insight pages on the tumblr (like Asterios’ final ascension art), it has become apparent Fragments of Chaldea needs a better home.
Warning: You may not want to subscribe to newsletters and such just yet. You’re likely going to get bombarded by 20+ emails on some days while all the insights are being reuploaded.
And so it shall be…
…As soon as BB stops screwing with the CSS and helps reupload stuff.
This is the first new insight posted to the Fragments of Chaldea homepage, mostly because Artemis’ final ascension art would’ve likely been smacked by the tumblr bot.
Wonky NSFW bots aside, we’ve arrived at another dual servant. As shown with Jekyll and Hyde, both play a part in the fragment, but one takes the spotlight. This means I can feasibly use them again if I focused on Orion next time, but with the growing number of servants, it might be put off until later. Working with my personally-limited one time spotlight rule can be quite the jigsaw puzzle, so it pays to have extra pieces.
So Artemis takes the reins for this one, and pursues a mission gods and goddesses are well known for: Watching and judging others. In this case, it’s because of Achilles’ growing success with winning over Atalanta. The goddess isn’t about to let her devotee do that without her own permission, bringing about a callback to how the Greek pantheon often threw their own say and hand to spin fate as they pleased. Some things just don’t change.
It also allowed me to portray the relationship between the two in more interesting lights. Orion’s not always looking to flirt with other women, but he still does. Artemis isn’t always an airhead, but she still is. I simply painted the lesser known sides of them to give them depth through various scenarios and situations like the tense air being near Lobo or the comical attempt to hide herself when having dinner with Chiron.
Artemis is an extremely bubbly goddess, so that left the gates open for many friendships to show. That aid, time is limited, and the plot-like theme demanded focus. So I was forced to only infer some of her other friendships she usually has in favor of the ones that will matter for pushing Achilles’ subplot further. Though there was a pretty heavy focus on Achilles’ development and depth as well, it worked out fine because Artemis’ reactions and planning showcased her own thoughts and beliefs just as profoundly. Win, win.
So by the end of it, the reader should be leaving feeling satisfied from a very straightforward fragment with little twists and spins. It was my intention to sneak this one out by Christmas since it would fit the feel good mood pleasantly. Merry Christmas, and happy holidays everyone! I’ll return in the new year with something a little more laidback.
Teaser: Even if she had mad enhancement, her reasoning was absolute. Her thoughts were still crystal clear, but the compulsions were worse. It was truly troubling at times, but Chaldea was so accepting. They always welcomed her, and her beautiful children treat her so well. It gave her so much time to think, but she often got lost in those brooding thoughts and headaches. If only she could finally grasp what she’d often only dreamed about.
Original Post Date: August 19th, 2017
Edit 1: Adjusted slightly for typos and additional clarity.
Edit 2: Added a blurb about transforming Noble Phantasms.
I wasn’t expecting to have to deal with this so openly, but it’s apparent this needs to be addressed. I laid out all the framework over the 800k words that generally show what the memorial essences actually do, but I left it for the readers to see what influences they had. Some have come to a different conclusion, so I’ll clear that up immediately to set the record straight.
We’ll start with the entire premise of the memorial essence. By default in any grail war, only a piece of the original heroic spirit is summoned from the throne: You never get the real, complete one. Arturia was a different story because she was still alive at the time. That aside, this is where the memorial essence idea comes into play.
First, a memorial essence only becomes possible if a servant with the same hero base is summoned. If there’s too many differences (gender counts as a big one), they will manifest as a different spirit instead. This is why Arthur broke the rule. If they’re not even a possibility, but an entirely new existence based off of someone’s perception of a legend (Jeanne Alter), then they also manifest separately. These exceptions are few and far between.
Second, the Fate System summons servants from the throne and records their saint graph. If a servant answers the call again, it has the chance of getting a different slice of the actual hero. This is completely and specifically explained at the beginning of Kiritsugu’s Fragment (16).
The memorial essence allows that hero to gain memories and possibly a new noble phantasm. That’s it.
There is no direct or total personality change as a result of just receiving it. There are no regrown/redecided parameters. The original Saint Graph does not change. They get memories of another timeline and an accompanying noble phantasm of the proper class they may freely wield. Invoking the noble phantasm will activate it on a rank-down if they are in the wrong class, however. Additionally, any noble phantasm that requires a physical transformation will requirethe correct class, material body, and saint graph to invoke.
That’s it. I’ve ensured this was stable time and time again with every example I’ve shown.
Where readers are likely getting confused is why some act differently after receiving the memorial essence. This isn’t because they invoke any of the things above I said they don’t. Your answer is in a question. What else do memories come with? Emotions. The most vivid memories are driven by emotions, and that is what can influence the original servant present in Chaldea. Their perception and outlook can shift, but they will still be based off of the original’s disposition.
An outward attitude and perception can still be affected by the emotions contained within the memories. It has been shown that servants can have direct conflict with the memories received, but do come to accept them in some manner. After comparing them with their own, they can then choose in what manner they interpret it. It all boils down to how willing the original is to let these memorial essences influence their outlook, but a direct and sweeping overhaul does not happen.
I will now go over in detail the various examples of memorial essences.
EMIYA: This is a clear example of its use, but I can see where some may have drawn the wrong conclusion. The distinct personality differences between EMIYA and Shirou are there, but the written lines are specific. He has gotten used to these memories from Fate Route Shirou and has even accepted them. They’re so close to how he was, that only a bit of time was needed. The new emotions influenced his feelings towards Arturia, making the relationship possible again.
Vlad III: Likely the biggest culprit for confusion. Berserker and Lancer Vlad (Apoc) do act very differently canonically. While the berserker version is more impulsive due to being influenced directly by the legend of Dracula, his lancer side opposes it. By granting the berserker the memories of his lancer counterpart, he was given all the negative emotions against being a vampire. Those harsh beliefs alone would do much to stabilize him.
But why hasn’t he tried for the class shift like Lancelot? That will be revealed in his fragment when the time comes.
Lancelot: This one was very clear, yet also convoluted. His Mad Enhancement was released, allowing him to act like the remorseful yet determined knight seeking redemption. He found all of it in Their Guiding Light, and even gained a daughter. This led him to be the first servant in Chaldea to undergo the class change. Long after, Mata Hari stated in Ishtar’s Fragment, “He has become flirtier with his class change.”
The Class change is what influences a personality slightly because it directly changes the saint graph. The saint graph is the determining core and parameters of the servant, so by manipulating that, the chances of shifting the personality directly are higher. Simply getting a memorial essence of the same or different class (that grants a different noble phantasm) can not shift it alone: The saint graph itself needs to be directly adjusted.
The Child Servants (Fragments 27, 28, 29): Remember what Gilgamesh’s youth potion did? Besides revert the king back to his childlike self, it shifts the personality to that time as well. That explains the shift in personality for everyone. This is not a memorial essence example, though it did allow Arturia to actually feel like her happier, younger self (which she did get in TGL).
Kiritsugu and Irisiviel: Through them, I was able to show a willingness to change how they act based on the very different emotions they feel. Their memorial essences granted them the same thing the FGO variants never felt before: genuine love for a significant other and child. Love is a powerful as hell emotion, which cannot be denied. It leads people to do very different things. It led both of them, who had never even met before, to become a couple based on the emotions in their counterparts’ cherished memories. A stark personality change, yes, but how long did it take Kiritsugu and Irisviel to accept them? It wasn’t instant, and it was after much internal conflict, debate, and deliberation.
Altera: She seemed a lot happier around Nero after her memorial essence, but knowing what you do now, could you blame her? The normally stoic and warrior-driven hero just received her memories from Fate/Extella True Path. It is assumed she was greatly loved and appreciated by Nero, as shown in her original fragment. With these memories in full clarity, of course she’s going to be absolutely ecstatic that her adoptive sister never turned her back on her.
This might have been confused as a personality change, but it wasn’t. It was an overall mood disposition shift. The personality adaptation came with her time and experiences in Chaldea.
Arturia: This is where I put the nail in the coffin. She received her Lily essence at the end of Their Guiding Light. This had absolutely no outward influence on her in such a short period of time (hours) after receiving it. Even if Lily is overly chipper, they’re just fond memories for Arturia. While not as conclusive as the next point, they showcased that it’s just a bundle of memories with emotions (plus noble phantasm in this case).
As shown in Redemption from Sin, she has received the memorial essence for Arturia Lancer. However, her personality remained the same after the events of Their Guiding Light and the fragments. There is no discernible personality change or issue. She has simply come to accept the memories, and the newfound weapon’s power.
Speaking of which, it also displayed the issues of using a different noble phantasm in the wrong class: The unleashed attack suffers a rank down. This is just to ensure that “changing a class” does actually have certain benefits. It’s also to prevent someone like Arturia from just getting all these noble phantasms and throwing them around like it’s nothing. That brings us to the final, concerning member of memorial essences.
Gilgamesh: He’s received the lost memories of him as a child. During Iskandar’s fragment, he’s more agitated than usual. There’s no clear personality change in the king anywhere. It can be argued that the king’s disposition is immoveable due to how self-aware he is, but then Redemption from Sin happens.
Suddenly he’s a touch more attentive and lenient at the behest of his memorial essence, but that’s not the whole truth. Do not forget, Gilgamesh has gone through a lot of bullshit (from his POV) upon arriving in Babylonia. His friend tried to kill him, his counterpart is disappointed in him, and his citizens are scared as hell. All of these are making an impact on him and opening the window. Combined with the memories of his childhood, which show the exact opposite, he’s going to be more curious and open, even if only a touch. Never forget the conditions and influences of a setting.
There’s a few other minor ones like Elizabeth, but I think it’s all self explanatory at this point.
That aside, you can now see the circumstances and specifics of the memorial essences, meaning these next two questions have been answered:
I’m certain you can determine the answers to these now that I laid everything out next to each other.
Upon receiving a memorial essence from either Rin or Ishtar, only her mood, outlook, and possible list of friends/enemies will change. Upon her summoning and merging with Rin, Ishtar’s dominant personality had already been solidified with the saint graph as stated in Babylonia canon; There is no “granting control” if the identity has been combined permanently. I’ve been over this before, but FGO’s depiction of Ishtar was the exact opposite of the pseudo-combination of Waver/Zhuge Liang. Only Rin’s subtle quirks and influences on the goddess’ personality will appear. The class change makes it a possibility, but that’s if Ishtar decided to go through with it.
As for Saber Alter, this is fairly obvious as well. She’s far too close to Arturia to manifest as her own servant if she was summoned to Chaldea. If she did arrive as a memorial essence, there would be no full personality shift or split. This isn’t like Gilles De Rais, who has that duality issue to begin with. Him receiving a memorial essence would only further agitate and bolster the voices due to the memories. Arturia would just be frustrated with dealing with rather disconcerting memories.
Sorry to say, Saber Alter’s fans, but her chances of actually being summoned in fragments are slim, but do not forget there are supplements and minor singularities. There’s always the possibility to make something happen and I catch everyone off guard in some way. I shall leave the random speculation to you, but don’t come looking for answers. You just have to be patient, because I didexpress the intention to have every servant featured in some manner.
Debut: Fragment 77
Affiliation: Quality of Life Division
Education: Doctorate in Psychology (Scuola Normale Superiore di Pisa)
Heritage: Italian, Born and Raised
Hair: Light Brown
Eyes: Greenish Blue
Likes: Children, Family, Catholicism
Dislikes: Internet and Media Toxicity, War
Fears: Anything bad happening to her son
Favorite Color: Blue
Key Personality Traits: Motherly, Caring, occasionally fearful
Specialty: Mental and Emotional Therapy
Hobbies: Knitting, Helping at the Church
Key Personality Traits: Altruistic, Respectful, Religious, Reverent, Kind
Specialties: Calm/controlled in the worst situations, Incredible Focus
Hobbies: Jet Skiing, Free Diving, Swimming, Sailing
Closest Companions (Bond 6+ for servants)
|Bond 10||Nightingale, Raikou|
|Bond 9||Martha, Medea, Boudica|
|Bond 8||Vlad, Amakusa, Jeanne, George|
|Bond 7||Mata Hari, Irisviel, Atalanta, Da Vinci|
|Bond 6||Romulus, Nero, Cleopatra, Caesar, Caligula|
|OCs||Naomi, Delaqua, Anishka|
After being invited by Da Vinci at her uncle Leandre’s insistence, Elsa dared to be one of the first new employees to travel all the way to Antarctica for a job. Her circumstances remain mysterious, but most understand she was running away from financial problems. Due to her friendly and helpful personality, plus her adorable baby, Giovanni, she was quickly considered a Chaldean Celebrity.
They say no one has a heart of gold like mothers, but Elsa stands taller above the rest. Often doing too much to help out those she’s come to like, she’s known for often forgetting her own wellbeing. Even so, any little trouble with her baby has her running to his side immediately in panic. Some call it a mother’s true love, but some feel there’s more to that fear she isn’t revealing.