Fate/Extella Link – New Heroes, Mighty Mullets, and More
I must admit, I’d somewhat forgotten about Fate/Extella Link since it was announced a little while back. I really enjoyed the original Fate/Extella (you can check out my review here), so naturally I was quite excited to hear of a sequel – but then it just kinda fell off my radar, since I hadn’t heard anything new for a while. Now, all of a sudden, the game has a June 7th release date in Japan, and the hype train is back on the rails thanks to the release of quite a lot of new information. So let’s get rolling and take a look!
The biggest news is the reveal of three new characters, who will be joining Charlemagne and the original 16 playable servants from Fate/Extella. All three of these characters have appeared in previous Fate installments, and the choices are very exciting – these are all strong fan favourites, and characters that I personally like quite a lot too.
The first is Francis Drake, originally from Fate/Extra. This is certainly the most exciting reveal of the three for me – Drake was one of my favourite characters in Fate/Extra, and is one of my favourite historical figures in general. I was disappointed that she didn’t appear in the original Extella, so seeing her here now is a big deal for sure.
Drake is a Rider class servant, whose Noble Phantasm is the Golden Wild Hunt, which calls on the power of her infamous galleon, the Golden Hind. She also sports a look unseen in her previous appearances in Extra and Grand Order – although it did appear in Wada Arco’s Fate/GO Memo artbook. I think it’s a great new design, but I’m eager to see what other costumes she might get in the game as well.
The second is Fate/Apocrypha’s own Astolfo, whose popularity has recentl surged to soaring heights for a number of reasons. Heck, he’s even featured as one of the Waifu banners here on Waifu Watch. He’s just that cute – who even cares if he’s a trap? Astolfo is the kind of trap you’d enter willingly, with no regrets.
Of course, Astolfo’s popularity is not the only reason he might have made his way into this game – after all, this bubbly and care-free knight is one of Charlemagne’s twelve warriors, and Charlemagne is clearly set to have a major role in Extella Link. Astolfo is, like Drake, a Rider, and his Noble Phantasm is the Hippogriff.
Finally, we have Scatchach, from Fate/Grand Order. Scathach is not at all a surprising pick – she’s certainly the most popular of these three characters, and was somewhat conspicuous by her absence in the previous game. It’s definitely cool to see her join the roster.
Scathach has a very cool design and an interesting personality, and her fighting style is well suited to the Musou-like combat of Fate/Extella, so I’m very much looking forward to seeing how she turns out in the game. It’ll also be nice to see her interact with her student, Cu Chulainn (an Extella alumni), in a new setting. She is, like Cu, a Lancer class servant, and wields the fearsome spear Gae Bolg in battle.
But that’s not all! Including Charlemagne and these three characters, it has been confirmed that there are ten new servants to look forward to in the upcoming title. If you visit the game’s official site, you’ll see the above image, which reveals the classes for the remaining six unknown characters. There are two Archers, one Caster, two Berserkers, and one Ruler class servant.
Given the enormous roster of potential servants from other Fate series (particularly Grand Order), it’s difficult to speculate on the identity of these servants – they could even be brand new servants such as Charlemagne, or Archimedes from the previous game. However, if you pushed me to make a guess, I could easily see Robin Hood and Nightingale taking an Archer and Berserker spot, respectively. These servants were explicitly mentioned in the Fate/Extella Materials book included with the Moon Crux edition of the game. While they seem to have been cut from that game, they could very easily appear in Extella Link. Robin Hood seems especially likely, as he’s one of only a handful of Fate/Extra servants yet to make an appearance in Extella, and he has his fair share of fans to boot.
Special Editions, Preorder Prizes, and Extra Content
Much like Fate/Extella before it, Extella Link has revealed a special collector’s edition. Included in the collector’s edition is a copy of the game (as you’d hope) for either PS4 or Vita, along with a soundtrack CD and – rather unusually – a set of illustrated mahjong tiles, featuring chibi versions of various Extra and Extella characters, illustrated by Wada Arco. All of this comes bundled in a special box with a lovely illustration of Scathach, Nero and Drake, again illustrated by Arco. It’s an interesting bundle, though I really would have liked to see a material book similar to the one included in Extella’s special edition.
Of course, a special edition wouldn’t be complete without DLC; the PS4 version will contain a special costume for Scathach, while the PS Vita version includes a costume for Nameless.
As well as this, there’s a whole boat-load of different retailer exclusive preorder bonuses on offer. It would be too much work for me to try and list them all, so let’s leave it to the official website to do it for us! Bonuses range from exclusive DLC costumes, to wall tapestries and posters with exclusive illustrations by Wada Arco. To be honest, I don’t like this sort of thing – while I do like a good preorder bonus, I don’t appreciate so many different exclusives being out there. That said, it is what it is – if you’re planning to import, it might be good to work out which store has the best goodies for you.
Additionally, the PlayStation 4 and Vita versions will have cross-save compatibility. On top of that, players who have their Extella save data will find themselves rewarded with a selection of bonus costumes that appeared in the previous game – these costumes are for Nero, Tamamo, Altera and Artoria.
Nameless and Mulleted
Finally, let’s wrap things up with the most controversial news of all – the mullet. As you can see, Nameless is sporting a new look in Extella Link, and along with it comes a fancy new hair-cut (or rather, a lack of haircut). Fans seem to be divided on this bold new direction, but I have to admit that I quite like it. It’s important to remember that the EMIYA you see in other Fate series is not the same person as Nameless, and this new design does a lot to differentiate the two, while still maintaining the obvious visual connection. For those familiar with the original design, you’ll be able to notice plenty of differences, big and small.
Anyway, that’ll just about do it! If you couldn’t tell by now, I’m very excited about Fate/Extella Link. I think it’s safe to assume that Marvelous will localise this one as well, since Extella released across a variety of platforms and seems to have done pretty well for itself, too. Assuming Extella Link does make its way to Western shores, I’ll definitely be picking it up, and I’ll be sure to review it, too.
If you’re as excited about it as me, then feel free to let me know in the comments below! Tell me which of the new servants you’re looking forward to playing as, who you think the upcoming servants could be, or even whether you like the mullet or not. New haircuts can be pretty shocking, after all.