Black Onslaught: Unleashing the fullest might of his Azure Grimoire, Ragna unfolds his Blood-Scythe and begins hacking away at the target repeatedly, all the while growing darker in appearance until he assumes the form of a black monster. Fully unleashed, Blood-Scythe draws in the target's soul as fuel to utterly erase their existence in one last swing. Visually astounding to behold, the fact it inflicts 15K+ damage is no laughing matter, either.
Valkyrie Veil II: Daring the opponent to strike, Noel proceeds to unload Bolverk in a flashy display of fireworks. After dumping both clips, she clangs the butts of her handguns together - and the energy spheres dispersed across the arena detonate at once, nuking the opponent. A great improvement over the original, and proof that Noel has grown a real spine in the month-and-a-half since Kagutsuchi.
Sword of the Godslayer: And on a similar note, Mu's Astral gets a tremendous upgrade as well. After trapping her opponent in a barrier, Mu flies into the air and transforms her wings into 8 large Kusanagi swords which she then fires at the ground. The swords converge on the trapped opponent and explode, vaporizing the enemy and turning the ground into a nuclear wasteland!Person of Mass Destruction indeed.
King of Tager: He grapples his opponent when using this astral. If he succeeds, he charges up his jet boosters, flies up extremely high, and slams the opponent onto the ground. Sounds like a normal command grab, does it? Did I mention that he starts his descent from the stratosphere?, and that they fall from such a height that it leaves a big crater?, and that he SURVIVES?!
Nine Gates of Heaven: Launching the enemy skyward, Litchi vaults after them, slams them with her feet repeatedly, and delivers one last devastating kick to blow them back to the ground. This doesn't appear too impressive... until you realize it inflicts a whopping 20K+ damage, easily more than any other Astral Heat in the game! Not bad for a human, eh?
N-Infinity: Arakune had his Astral updated for Chronophantasma and it has become the epitome of Creepy Awesome. The startup is similar to his original Astral Heat when he turns into a giant eye trying to tag you, but instead of causing instant death, being hit by the eye stars a sequence of the victim being trapped in a web with various giant eyes appearing across the screen, then four large centipedes with giant eyes on their back begin swarming the screen and devour the victim whole. Afterward, nothing remains but a void and the raining blood the victim's remains. Nightmare Fuel doesn't even begin to describe it.
The Ultimate Bang: Bang opens in a not-so-impressive manner by jabbing the enemy with his ginormous nail. He then proceeds to plow through several oriental-style doors, screaming at the top of his lungs, and slamming a fist, burning out of his sheer Hot-Blooded nature, head-on into the misfortunate victim - said flames burn so hot that even Bang's clothes are incinerated! Then again, what did you expect from the mortal incarnation of ham?
Deus ex Machina II: On command from Carl, Ada makes a ball of energy, but this time it isn't a bomb. If the enemy touches the enemy ball, Carl drapes his cape over them, and teleports them to another dimension, a curtain rises, to reveal that the enemy is surrounded by gears and cogs - the gears encroach and proceed to grind the enemy to dust. Like Noel's, a vast improvement over the original time-bomb.
Kokujin Ogi: Akumetsu: As befitting his reprisal-heavy combat style, Hakumen raises Okami before him with a seal between him and his opponent. Should anything strike the seal, time freezes as Hakumen unleashes the fullest of his available power, rendering slash upon slash on the foe's prone body, with blood spraying everywhere until the screen is doused with it. Overwhelmed by pain and excessive bleeding, the opponent promptly collapses as Hakumen turns away from the audience and sheathes his sword.
Requiem Aeternam: Unleashing Izayoi's power, Tsubaki turns into an angel and charges the foe, immobilizing them in a magic circle. The scene shifts to the goddess statue in Library headquarters, which moves to form a magic spearhead in tandem with Tsubaki's Badass Creed. As if on cue, both move in sync, the spear jabbing into the victim's prone body and felling them instantly. This almost makes Izayoi worthwhile...
White feathers for innocence... black feathers for darkest sin...! We are the messengers and hammers of God, come forth to deliver righteous justice! Let sinners be punished...! Let justice be done!!
Judge of Destiny: Speaking of Izayoi, her Astral is a variation of Tsubaki's. Izayoi transforms once again and charges at the opponent with a lance. If it hits, a cutscene plays where Izayoi summons an even bigger lance which is propelled into space and strikes the enemy.
Hungry Darkness of 1000 Souls: A truly badass and sinister finishing move for the world's greatest troll. Hazama summons a bunch of chains from the ground which snares the opponent, after which he summons a mass of snake which eventually form one gigantic snake. The gigantic snake would devour the opponent.
Unholy Wrath of the Basilisk: An upgrade to Hazama's astral finish, Terumi throws 2 chains on the ground that snares the opponent. If caught, he summons a bunch of snakes that attack the opponent. Right after the onslaught, he transforms into a black version of Hakumen (complete with green Tron Lines) and kills the opponent. This is followed by the most insane laughter in video game history. Heck, the laugh during the Astral could also count.
Blut Vollmund: Harkening back to his vigilante days, Valkenhayn flash kicks the opponent airborne. After a brief pause, he fully transforms into the bipedal werewolf that our lore has accustomed us with, leaps after the prone victim, strikes from multiple directions only to, like Hakumen, saturate the screen in blood. How his outfit stays clean through all that will always remain a mystery...
Puppeteer's Altar: As if by command, Ignis lunges outward and catches the opponent in a Face Palm of Doom. The scene then cuts to the nightmare house they call Relius' lab, where the opponent is bound in a very secure fashion, only for the man himself to rise, approach, and announce his intent before the doors slam shut. Each character is bound in a different fashion designed around their equipment and their powers - clear-cut cred for Relius (due to him being Crazy-Prepared in this fashion) and for the art team (for going out of their way to design all of these in the first place).
Patriot Apocalypse: If all the talk about slaughtering hundreds during the Ikarugan Civil War didn't convince you that Azrael was already a born Badass, his Astral will probably do the trick, showing you what happens when a Person of Mass Destruction decides to cut loose. Azrael removes his Enchant Dragonov limiters and punches the opponent downwards to the ground, then pulls out the ground from underneath them and tosses them into the air. Summoning his strength into his fist as the opponent descends, he then punches upwards at the opponent with all his power, so much that it causes a giant explosion that annihilates the opponent. What's left of the scene is him posing away from the camera, laughing at the destruction in a way that would make Akuma weep with pride.
Ultimate Impact: Very fitting of her "mad scientist" personality, Kokonoe first grabs the opponent, then punches the opponent repeatedly before kicking them into a magnetic device. It doesn't sound that awesome at first, but then she follows it up by summoning a colossal meteor that crushes the opponent and turns the world's landscape into a magma crater.. She practically not only Astral finishes you, but the rest of the world as well.
Hard Kill Bringer: Bullet's Astral is living proof that you don't need magic to be a badass. Delivering a hard punch to stun her opponent, Bullet lifts them up and proceeds to bombard them with fire-enhanced punches. She then slams the opponent into the ground and mounts them, revealing a Pile Bunker in her gauntlet. She then fires a blast of flame so hot that it not only torches the opponent, but craters the ground as well.
Black Dragon's Sky-Rending Blade: Handsome Lech he may be, but Kagura's Astral is a sure-fire reminder to why he earned the title "Black Knight". Kagura swings his Zweilhander upwards, and if successful, traps his enemy with tendrils of dark energy. As his opponent is bricking themselves over their immient demise, he then raises his blade to the sky and gathers dark energy around it to form a giant LaserBFS before bringing it down on the opponent, erasing them from existence.
Story and Arcade incidents
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Novis Orbis Librarium - The Knights of the Blue Flame
Noel Vermillion - "Successor to the Azure"
Even Noel gets one in Calamity Trigger, when she fights flippin Nu, endures that beatdown, and still manages to save Ragna from falling into the Cauldron, thus ending the century-long time loop that has spanned countless continuua up until that point. Here's hoping she can rock this hard again in the near future.
In Chronophantasma, When trying to regain her Murakumo powers, she fights herself and Mu-12. She accepts that she isn't a normal human, but her feelings make her an individual. Terumi shows up and tries to taunt her over the fact that she's a mere 'doll', but Noel (Now dressed in her Mu garbs, completely in control) tells him she doesn't care what she is as long as she can save Tsubaki.Character Development is a wonderful thing. Now if she could put up a better fight against Nu...
Also in Chronophantasma, after Makoto is done with her, Noel steps up against Tsubaki and draws her aggression squarely on her, as part of the plan to Observe the Zero-Type Izayoi for Tsubaki to evoke. This deserves mention as, while Rachel and Kokonoe are both accomplished Observers, neither of them had to Observe an alternate state of something while said something was making an active effort to kill them. Even Jin notices this is better than her usual fare.
"Not bad, for a scrub. Now stand back. It's my turn now."
Jin Kisaragi - "The Hero of Order"
Jin's true path in Continuum Shift has him being unable to use Yukianesa because it doesn't want to be used. Ragna points out that a Nox Nyctores either controls its user or must be completely overpowered by willpower to be used. He states Jin needs to be stronger if he wishes to win. When he confronts Tsubaki, who is eventually mind controlled by Hazama, Jin states that if she stands in his way, she will be his enemy and activates Yukianesa against its will. This is awesome for gameplay reasons as well - since Jin was locked out of all of his ice attacks up to this point, being able to unload with Unlimited Jin was extremely cathartic.
Jin: I am the cold steel, the blade that will restore balance to this world. Nox Nyctores: Yukianesa, Activate!
Jin's entire CS story is one long ode to his grinding in badass. After escaping from a hospital ship, he manages to fight off Hazama while protecting Makoto, freezes Hazama in his tracks when things start going south, fights Rachel at full power and holds his own despite being too badly injured to stand up straight, receives a painful healing treatment, challenges Hakumen and gets stomped on, holds off Ragna without Yukianesa, has that lovely little tiff with a Brainwashed and Crazy Tsubaki (read: she's trying to kill him) and fends her off despite being unable to use his Nox for most of the fight, encounters Hazama and fights well enough to make him retreat, fights the powerful magic user Phantom (implied in another story mode to be Nine herself) offscreen and apparently wins, and then tells Hakumen to back off so he can take on Mu all by himself. Would you believe this is the same Ax-Crazy sissy who obsessed over Ragna in Calamity Trigger? Jubei wasn't kidding when he said Jin had grown.
And lest we forget, surviving a trip through the Boundary on determination alone and becoming the legendary hero Hakumen. And he may top it yet.
Chronophantasma definitely continues Jin's rise in badassery. After he reluctantly accepts help from Makoto and Noel in helping Tsubaki, he comes up with a plan that involves all three of them fighting her in sequence; First is Makoto to bring her to her physical limits, Noel to use the Power of the Eye and observe Izayoi's true form and make it real, and finally Jin to finish the job himself. When it comes time for Jin's turn, he proves just how much he cares about Tsubaki by claiming that if he can bring her back to normal, his life is a small price to pay and that he intends on keeping their childhood promise. The now Izayoi possessed Tsubaki prepares to use Immortal Breaker, a power which is capable of even killing the likes of Rachel. Makoto, Noel, and Tsubaki are all fittingly worried, but Jin takes the blow anyway. The thought of killing someone so close to her caused Tsubaki to break the "Mind Eater" spell on her. Jin later survives his near death experience, by claiming that the power behind Immortal Breaker is to implant the idea of death in the victim's head, but since Jin possesses the Power of Order, he claims that death cannot be implanted in him. He may be an aloof jerk most of the time, but Jin proves without a doubt he goes above and beyond for those he cares about.
In Chrono Phantasma, Hakumen has to destroy a monolith but doesn't have enough strength to do so after his fight with Terumi. Then Jin arrives and together, while Blood Pain is playing, the two use Yukikaze to destroy the monolith. That's right. Both Jins perform a double Yukikaze!
Relius Clover - "The Mad Puppeteer"
In the True Ending of Continuum Shift, after getting the shit torn out of him, Terumi is left to bleed by Ragna the Bloodedge out of Cruel Mercy. However, he managed to pull his plan off anyway, and the manner is revealed in Relius' Arcade mode ending - Relius, per his coherence with Terumi, sics Ignis on him, tearing him to shreds. Shows that these two are a different breed of villain when they cooperate so willingly and efficiently!
Makoto's bad ending, and Relius' hand in it, is said by many to be either an utterly terrifying thing or Tear Jerker, and they'd be right. However, one thing that tends to be glossed over is that it serves as Relius' Crowning Moment Of Awesome, a testament for his villain caliber. Why? Makoto serves as a massive Spanner in the Works for Hazama's plans. She thwarts him several times during her Story Mode, something that no other character has really done - the significance of this is listed in Makoto's section. Relius, understandably, will stand for none of it. He successfully leads her into a trap using Jin as the bait, and proceeds to... ahem, put the spanner back in the toolbox, shall we say. Also, if what he says is any indication, he smelt Makoto's soul into a Nox without using a cauldron. Succeeding where goddamn Hazama of all people failed, succeeding spectacularly at that, and leaving little doubt he could repeat it in a canon path? Maybe Hazama isn't the one to fear after all.
On that note, while he loses his battle against Valkenhayn in Hunting Dog, he does manage to collect enough combat data to make the ordeal worthwhile. Whereas gambits of any stripe and/or level of complexity require defeats to be planned for, battle data with which to study the opponent is always welcome, and it shows that Relius is flexible enough that a non-critical defeat can be turned into a possibility of victory at a later date.
Its relatively small, but his first fight could count too. He pretty much makes a fool out of Ragna, and forces him to nearly use the Grimoire to even stand a chance. Kagura keeps his cool the entire time, completely unhindered by Ragna's threats and even tosses out a few one-liners of his own. In the end, he knocks out Ragna and brings him and tosses him in jail. The infamous Grim Reaper of Kagutsuchi finally defeated and apprehended, the story finally brought full circle, by this one man.
Imperator "Izanami" Librarius
Wheel of Fortune and the end of Continuum Shift heavily implied that the Imperator was a tool for Relius and Hazama to fulfill their plans. By Chronophantasma's end, a whole different picture is painted: Hakumen and Trinity slay Terumi via a binding trap and the Time Killer power of the Susano'o, and Relius is left a broken shell of a man entirely at Carl and Litchi's collective mercy, and how does she feel? Saya/Izanami writes Hazama and Relius off as acceptable losses, takes Phantom with her and leaves them both to their fates. After being established as a puppet ruler, watching her pull the strings from the other end, only to sink the knife between their shoulders at their most vulnerable moment, is a sight to behold.
The Six Heroes - Old Legends
Yuuki Terumi, aka Hazama - "The Smooth Criminal"
In the True Ending of Continuum Shift, Terumi gets the absolute hell beaten out of him by Ragna the Bloodedge, having restored the functionality of his Azure Grimoire courtesy of Lambda's Idea Engine. You'd think this is the moment a villain crumbles, but no - he proceeds to infiltrate Takamagahara via a miniscule blind spot during Ragna's encounter with Mu-12, boast outright that he calculated every single possibility of the Continuum Shift, and infect them with a magical virus that cripples their ability to influence the timeline permanently. To get his ass handed to him and exploit the defeat to succeed in his plans anyway - especially against an allegedly omniscient supercomputer - proves his ability as a Magnificent Bastard.
Hazama vs Ragna in Arcade mode (both of theirs) is suitably epic. Ragna activates his Azure Grimoire, thinking he can easily trash Terumi, but Terumi just laughs in his face, shuts down Ragna's Grimoire (Ragna's Arcade only) and tells him he invented the stupid thing - and his version is better.
Hazama scores one in general when he unleashes the Azure Grimoire, as he manages to catch a sizable portion of the cast - from Carl and Taokaka to Noel and Tsubaki to even Tager and Kokonoe (via Lambda) - by total surprise in the process! With one exception, the only characters in control of themselves are those who lived before the Dark War.
Hakumen - "The End has Come!!"
Hakumen's origin cements him as an absolute badass - basically, Terumi's being his twat self, and since the Six Heroes (down to two due to Terumi turning traitor, Nine dead, Valkenhayn guarding Rachel, and Trinity MIA) are in no shape to take him out, Claudius and Jubei use their combined abilities to open a gate to the Boundary - and Hakumen tackles Terumi through it. Ninety years of confinement in the Boundary later (felt like ten to him), much of it composed of pursuing Terumi until he was paroled by Takamagahara, Kokonoe drags him out at 20% of his former power - and that's still enough to beat the shit out of Ragna. So, basically, he executes a Sealed Evil in a DuelHeroic Sacrifice, their shared prison a nexus between all timelines that fucks up anyone who enters it, carries on the hunt through sheer force of will, and survived the experience. While many others would challenge the Boundary (with one total success and a few partial successes) afterward, Hakumen did it first; Hakumen does it best.
Hakumen's Continuum Shift story has him slice time itself so he can view another timeline where he was defeated by Arakune.
His "alternate truth" path in Calamity Trigger. "I am the white void. I am the cold steel. I am the just sword. With blade in hand shall I reap the sins of this world, and cleanse it in the fires of destruction. My past incarnation is no exception! I am Hakumen. The end has come." He then proceeds to beat Unlimited Jin silly.
There are protagonists who are not horrified or otherwise startled when Hazama unleashes his Azure Grimoire in Arcade Mode. Unsurprisingly, Hakumen is one of them, and while he's not completely suppressed, he makes it clear it will take more than the Azure Grimoire to cause him to lose his cool.
During Phase 0, a time-displaced Ragna meets several people that he would later meet in his life, like Jubei. Each time, he comments that they lack something compared to the ones from his time...until he comes across Hakumen, at which point he hides in instinctive fear, because not only is Hakumen exactly the same, but this is him in his Glory Days, with the Hakumen that Ragna knew being only a pale echo.
Three words: He. Kills. Terumi. Nothing more really needs to be said.
Valkenhayn R. Hellsing - "The Silver Wolf"
The final act of Hunting Dog shows that Valkenhayn's fangs have not rotted out after ninety years. Valkenhayn's third match is against Hakumen, and after the two of them finish, Hazama shows up and summons Phantom, who dumps "Fido" into Izayoi's domain - an extracontinuual pocket into which observation is impossible. When Valkenhayn realizes where he is, he notes that Relius is experimenting on Ragna the Bloodedge, proceeds to intervene and send the Grim Reaper on his way to Rachel, facing the Mad Puppeteer's wrath alone in his place. That's part of what makes it awesome - the other part is that Valkenhayn actually wins against who is otherwise the Game Over Man, and who would have experimented thoroughly on Platinum were it not for the combined efforts of Bang and Hakumen. It would have been more awesome if Valkenhayn defeated Relius thoroughly enough to derail the gambit, but alas.
Also worth noting that Relius, the monster who views nearly everyone else in the game as either a tool or a specimen, views Valkenhayn as the Worthy Opponent. That speaks volumes.
Hakumen:"You have still not lost your edge".
In the bad ending of Tao's CS story Journey,Tao gets beaten down by Noel, who is under Hazama's control. Just as he's about to finish Tao off, Valkenhayn and Torakaka show up, the former parrying Hazama's killing blow. Valkenhayn stares down Hazama as Torakaka whisks Tao away to saftey, completely nonchalant and calm, only losing his cool when Hazama insults Rachel, to which he responds with a savage blow. All throughout the conversation, Valkenhayn is talking down to Hazama like a parent scolding a disobedient child, and it is awesome.
In Chronophantasma, He performs a Big Damn Heroes moment and fights Relius in Bang's place so the latter can activate the lynchpin. He then proceeds to ''beat the living shit out of him'', and would have succeed in killing him had it not been for Carl saving him. Never before has anyone given Relius such a beatdown; it was so devastating that his ego was completely shattered afterward. Whilst only slightly mitigated in that it was offscreen, it doesn't change the fact that Valkenhayn can still kick some massive ass in his old age.
Trinity Glassfield - "The Platinum Alchemist"
While Hakumen's shining moment in Chronophantasma is glorious indeed, Trinity deserves some credit for the setup and for helping fixing the problem she foolishly created.
In Terumi's Arcade, while he mocks how easy it was to bag Hakumen, Trinity confesses her own weakness and how she can only help others solve the world's problems. Sounds well and good, but then Terumi finds that he was in the real world all along, and that "Hazama" is speaking to him from behind - Trinity and Rachel orchestrated everything as a trap so Terumi and Hazama's consciousnesses can be switched between his body and soul! Listening to Terumi freak out that Jubei can kill him now must be seen to be believed.
In the Six Heroes story, Trinity does the exact same thing, with Terumi becoming increasingly irate with every simulacrum he hacks down, only to end up in the real world and simultaneously staring down Hakumen, Jubei, and Celica. Terumi and the audience both know fully well that without Phantom, all he could do is stand there and await his end.
In the Chronophantasma story, when Hakumen is busy setting up Time Killer, Trinity uses a gap set up by Terumi's own arrogance to bind Hazama in place, leaving Terumi prone to Hakumen's blade and bricking himself over his imminent demise. Hazama doesn't take this sitting down, and stains the moment by shanking Platinum after the deed is done, shattering Trinity's soul in the process, and leaving her to fall into the water below. If Luna and Sena somehow survive this, they have a lot of work to do...
Jubei - "The Strongest Being Alive"
No mention of Jubei, who despite being one of the smallest characters, was the physically strongest of them all, surpassing even Hakumen? The guy is almost as small as Platinum and can block one of Tager's punches with no difficulty, even after becoming a Handicapped Badass.
The main story gives her a pretty comparable moment too. Kokonoe asks Celica to go away from Ragna for a few so she can test out a theory. That's when Terumi shows up to confirm Ragna's location, and by "confirm", I mean beat the ever loving shit out of him. That's when Tager intervenes, and prevents things from escalating further. Kokonoe then unveils Celica to Terumi, and like what happens to Ragna when she's around, his Azure completely shuts down. Unlike Ragna however, Terumi's entire body is his Azure Grimoire, meaning the exposure cripples him completely. Terumi has what is possibly his biggest Villainous Breakdown in the entire series, damning Kokonoe for going to such extreme measures of cloning Celica's soul from the past and bringing her to the present. Kokonoe completely ignores this, and refutes that she would go to any lengths to beat him. In a mirror of his CP Arcade ending, Terumi then requests Phantom for another immediate evac.
Azrael - "The Mad Dog"
Speaking of Azrael, he pretty much deserves a spot on here just for sheer fact of how much of an Implacable Man he is. His introduction has him sleeping in a chamber of a temperature at damn near absolute zero, and then he easily breaks his bonds before being given his assignment of tracking down Ragna and taking his Azure Grimoire. He pretty much spends half of the plot shrugging off most of the protagonist's best attacks. His Arcade Mode has him tracking down Ragna, and going through most of the cast to do so including Valkenhayn, Tager, and Jin before finally finding Ragna himself. He gains the upper-hand on Ragna pretty quickly, forcing him to use the Azure. Azrael welcomes this because it means he can release his own power as well, Enchanted Dragonov. Azrael reveals that he's been holding back the entire time and glad that he finally has a Worthy Opponent he can use it on. Ragna & Azrael are about to engage in Round 2 of their fight, with the latter going full Large Ham with excitement...and this where the Arcade ends.
Ragna: You damn hunk of muscle, don't you dare look down on me. You're gonna be dead meat. Idea Engine Linked, Blazblue Activate. Azrael: Excellent! So that is the Blazblue huh? I shall sink my teeth into itUNTIL I CAN FEAST NO MORE!!
Neutral/Other - Unsung Heroes
Ragna the Bloodedge - "The Grim Reaper"
For all the treatment Ragna gets throughout the story, he shows just how capable he is at kicking ass and taking names throughout the True Ending. Heartwarming also ensues.
Picking up from where Ragna's ending left off, Ragna has just found out that Terumi created the BlazBlue, and not only wields a stronger one, but has the ability to keep Ragna's on lockdown (in this case, denying his Drive attacks (the D button)), and kicks Ragna's ass. Ragna's down for the count, and Terumi is about to finish him off when Lambda comes out of nowhere and takes the hit instead. After an exchange between Ragna and a dying Nu/Lambda (in which players get to hear, for the first time, Nu speak to Ragna in a way that wasn't crazy or Yandere), Ragna gets uber-pissed, absorbs Lambda's Idea Drive, uses it to restore his own BlazBlue and render it immune to Terumi's control, then goes Unlimited. What follows is one of the most satisfying fights in the game, finally getting to beat down a guy that deserved more than a simple beatdown, to a slightly-revamped version of Iconoclast. The only way that a three-minute period like that (maybe longer, depending on loading times) could be more awesome would be if it actually was the last fight of the True Ending. Or if you actually got to kill him. Or if it wasn't integral to his plan in any way.
And then he shines yet again in the build-up in the True ending to his fight with Mu/Tempered!Noel Vermillion, which actually is the True Final Boss of the story. Noel is as Brainwashed and Crazy as physically possible and talking in Robo Speak to boot, not to mention being controlled by his worst enemy to kill everything in her path. Both Hakumen and Jin are beaten half to death, and Rachel's told him she can't be saved. So what does Ragna do against the god-killing sword? Delivers the most blunt, effective, heartwarming and badass speech possible.
Phase 0 : Ragna is transported back in time and has to deal with... the Black Beast. On top of that, due to shenanigans, he doesn't have the Azure anymore. He's just Badass Normal now. Still doesn't stop him from stopping it for a year. Yep, ya heard me right. The Six Heroes barely defeated it yet he handled it basically while being human preventing it from causing havoc. Even if in the end his fate is being consumed, or perhaps he's consumed but took about a year to digest, it gave him a worthy moment to be referred as the Grim Reaper.
Hell, just getting back there counts - he pulls off the same trick as Makoto and Jin below. Granted, he loses his memory and his Azure Grimoire in the trip, but neither of them had to worry about a BFS gouging out their chest.
In Chronophantasma, it's revealed that this version of Ragna is actually Bloodedge, not from Calamity Trigger as initially thought, sent using the Tsukoyomi unit. And the disappearing act he pulls at the end f Phase 0? It's him returning to the present, posssibly using the Black Beast itself to do it.
In Chronophantasma He defeats Take-Mikazuchi, by himself. The weapon that destroyed the Black Beast in the Dark War, capable of nuking entire cities, and he beat it single-handily. Also keep in mind that Take-Mikazuchi is the size of a satellite.
Then he delivers a Curb-Stomp Battle to ''Nu'' of all characters. He does this without even using his Azure Grimoire(He had decided not to rely on its power anymore due to Character Development), and while she is trying to kill him(And not in her usual way, but as in legitimately angered at at him.) Even she can't believe how strong he's gotten, and then he tells her that she'sjust weak.
Another Chronophantasma moment. Azrael has just tried to murder Celica in order to provoke Ragna into using the Azure Grimoire against him. It works...right up until he realizes he wants the strength to protect people on his own and not rely on the power that simply steals. Not only does he force it stop from activating, but then he tells Azrael, someone who has been consistently shown forcing the strongest fighters BlazBlue has to offer to retreat at less than an 1/8th of his full power, that he's not worth activating the Azure for.
Ragna:*Screams as he manages to force the Azure Grimoire to halt it's activation* Could you really be that stupid? If you think I'd unleash the power of the Azure on a chump like you...*Smirks*You're out of luck!!!
Kagura: Looks like he managed to keep it down.
Rachel: So it does. Maybe there's hope for him.
Ragna:*Readies his sword* Alright! What are you waiting for, huh, Azrael!? This fight ain't over yet!
Bang Shishigami - "The Pride of Ikaruga" Bang Shishigami is the least augged person in BlazBlue history, bar none. He makes up for it by being Weak, but Skilled, utilizing the fullest of his ninjitsu training to engage, trap, and overcome his opponents. His endurance is nigh-unrivaled, surviving the worst the rest of the cast can throw at him, and even Hakumen - the Hero Antagonist who exemplifiesGood Is Not Nice - speaks very highly of his undying spirit.
In Calamity Trigger, Bang triggered a calamity in the upper levels of Kagutsuchi and survived despite being at the epicenter of that incident. Pardon the pun, but to come out from that means that Bang is clearly hard as nails.
Bang only gets two fights in his CS story, the last one against Hazama. In what can only be described as "Did you just cockslap Terumi?", after colliding head-on with Hazama's plot armor, Bang decided it was in his best interest to bail - and take Carl and Tao with him! Two kids Hazama had just torn the hell out of (one to soften up for Relius, the other because mindrape isn't an option), and while Bang was ready to breakThou Shalt Not Kill, he was wise enough to temper himself and live another day. So far, Hazama hasn't been bested in combat completely, but considering Rettenjou is inactive and therefore Bang's power comes entirely from his training and skill, it's damn impressive he was able to survive the encounter at all - even Hazama concurs..
Taking things even further, Platinum's story ends with a battle against Relius Clover, of all people, and while there's a hell of a stand, Luna and Sena lack the power needed to subdue the Mad Puppeteer. But before Relius can act upon the opening, Bang Shishigami drops in and engages Relius himself. The awesome doesn't come from the fact Bang fights Relius, but it's the fact that it happens after the above moment, and that he manages to stall Relius long enough for Hakumen to show up - at which point he believes it's in his best interest to conclude his experiment. To wit, Bang got his ass handed to him by Hazama, escaped with Carl and Tao, occupied Relius long enough for Hakumen to arrive, and got Platinum out of harm's way as well. Coupled with the Dare to Be Badass Trinity gives him, it's clear that Bang's relevance to coming events is on the up-and-up, and the example below shows he made it work. Godspeed, Bang Shishigami...
In a cutscene for Chronophantasma Bang goes into Fu-Rin-Ka-Zan mode to fulfill Tenjou's wish. By jumping into the sky and throwing the Rettenjou into the Lynchpin from a great height! Here it is in all its glory. But beforehand, he had to suffer a massiveEt Tu, Brute? moment when he was being beaten down by two people he appreciated the most aside of Tenjou; Litchi and Carl, both of them siding with Relius for their own purposes. Despite facing a massive Jade-Colored Glasses moment with them not as his fantasies decreed, Bang managed to stand his ground, work with Tsubaki and Makoto to fend them off, without seemingly losing respect on those two (he still uses the pronoun '-dono' for them), and then succeeds at the mission above, leaving Valkenhayn to beat the crap out of Relius. And know what? It was because of these actions that fortune turns around for both Carl and Litchi that they're able to put Relius under their mercy in the end!
Let us not forget the amazing moment that proceeded this one: When Ragna, Noel and Celica arrive at the Linchpin, they meet up with Bang, who challenges Ragna to a fight to test his resolve and see what exactly it is that he's fighting for. For a few moments during the fight, Bang manages to completely hand Ragna his ass! Ultimately, the fight ends in a draw. Bang acknowledges that Ragna is not the murderous criminal that he thought he was, but rather a very good person, and declares him worthy of using the Linchpin. In turn, Ragna comes to respect Bang, and trusts him with protecting the Linchpin while calling him by his full name, as a sign of respect. Bang has come a long ways from the days of Calamity Trigger, and it shows.
Bang manages to pull off two rather impressive moments in his Chronophantasma Arcade Story, KUSHINADA. The first is that he's set up to fight against Azrael, who has been shown capable of trashing Valkenhayn, Tager, Jin, and Ragna while not even close to his full power, as well as giving Hakumen and Rachel trouble. Bang not only manages to fight him to a standstill, but also impresses him to boot, to the point where he asks Bang for a rematch if they cross paths again! The second is when he gets to the end of his Arcade path, with his Final Boss being none other than Relius Clover. Bang doesn't win, but he does get Relius to think of him as "interesting" rather than another "thing". Considering that the only other two people that Relius acknowledges as such are Valkenhayn and Makoto, that says a lot.
Makoto Nanaya - "Ratatosk" While Makoto is more augged than Bang, being a squirrel beastkin, there is still much that is unknown about her. And yet, as her relevance to events increases, so too does her popularity (unfortunately, there is always an antimatter). The following list of deeds show that Izanami, Terumi and Relius' game of destiny was never the same once she hit the board.
Starting off is Slight Hope, which takes places Jan. 3, 2200 - three to four days before Continuum Shift proper. While Makoto did achieve a number of feats in the main story, this puts weight behind all of them, and shows why she is not to be ignored in the future.
The story takes place in the Wheel of Fortune timeline - what this means is Makoto was dragged into the Boundary, tossed into this timeline, and found her way back with aid from Rachel, all unscarred both mentally and physically both ways. Pretty impressive, considering Lotte "Roy" Carmine became the aberration known as Arakune within moments of his one entry, and only the aforementioned Hakumen managed this feat as well. So how did she pull that off?
Once Makoto arrived, in a reversal of Jin's story, she parries a coup de grace from Hazama and fights him immediately (this is Makoto's first fight in Story mode). Sure, Hazama "wins" and Jin has to bail her out after she gets paralyzed from a Death Glare, but what makes this awesome is that later, when Hazama shows up while Makoto's chatting with Tsubaki, Makoto decides to interrogate Hazama - the same guy who almost knifed her for messing up his hit on Jin - and sends Tsubaki ahead to meet with Jin. The sheer moxie of this catches Rachel's attention, and Makoto survives a second paralyzing glare due to her involvement.
In the interim between those two, Makoto also met with Tager and Kokonoe and explained her objectives to them, and when Relius helped Jin away from Ronin-gai as bait for Makoto in her absence, she instead asked Bang to look for him while she "put out some other fires". As a result, Relius was indisposed with Bang and his posse, and that chat with Tsubaki took her mind off of Hazama's mindrape as she pondered just what kind of girl Noel Vermillion is (in this timeline, Noel was obliterated in Ibukido) - the collateral damage from Continuum Shift Makoto's involvement in Wheel of Fortune, coupled with Hazama's inability to understand friendship and trust, sent his local plans tits-up! Long story short, Makoto earned that "Ratatosk" nickname - she's the only person to date to render Hazama's schemes "fair-to-middling FUBAR", and with everything she learned, she can willfully do it again!
At first glance, Friendship is Makoto going about doing her thing, with some heartwarming moments mixed in. But look back on it after playing Slight Hope, and it shows that detour paid off.
Makoto's designated fights in Arcade mode are, in exact order, Tager, Tsubaki, Noel, U.Hazama. This is not coincidental - defeating Tager allows Makoto to pass off her disc and bail, thus leaving Sector Seven off her tail; defeating Tsubaki means she won't attempt to kill Noel; and defeating Noel snaps her out of her mindrape-induced trance, only for Hazama to show up and pull the poor girl away. Look back on Slight Hope, and the truth is clear: Makoto Nanaya was one pep talk away from pretzelling Hazama's schemes again, and Hazama had no choice but to act at this time. Makoto's abilities as a Lieutenant in the Intelligence division and a spy for Sector Seven are thegenuine article.
And when Makoto finally fights Hazama, her state of mind is clear, even while he's barelyholding himself together. No amount of feigned compliments from Hazama, and especially not the Azure Grimoire, are going to convince Makoto that Hazama is anything other than a menace that needs to be put down - and even afterwards, the only trolling she doesn't shrug off with a retort inquiry is his mashing of her secondary Berserk Button, which cues a loud and clear "Shut the hell up!" Hazama does get some props, though, for invoking this much of a reaction at all. All of the above explains whyRachel put Makoto back on the board - it is a testament to her abilities and her potential.
A small bonus to the Badass Boast before the match with Izayoi. Not only does she abort a breaking line, but given how Tsubaki is clearly being controlled, it may be aimed at Izanami herself, whether Makoto herself knows it or not.
Izayoi: I'll kill you... then Noel... and then Jin. I am a judge, appointed by the Imperator herself. Evil must be eradicated... That includes those that obstruct justice. Oh, right... but you are already a traitor. I'm sorry, it seems like I need to kill you after all. To die for the sake of your friend... That's what you always wanted, right? Makoto: No... my friends are... You're... You're not Tsubaki! Give her back to me! [...] Then I'll just have to beat her out of you... no matter what it takes, I will get her back!
You would think, given how Arcade stories worked in the last two games, that this wouldn't apply to the main story. Think again. After the tournament trap for Azrael runs its course, Tsubaki decides to investigate the arena at Kagura's request, only to be sealed in an Eclipse Field with Makoto, Noel and Jin to keep her company. The conditions are set: Tsubaki has free reign over all three of them if she can defeat just one, but if she loses she has to defect on the spot. Makoto is first, and after confessing how similar she and Tsubaki are, she gives a warning that her fists have a lot of weight behind them this time. The fight makes one thing clear: Never Break Your Heart and intervention by Izanami notwithstanding, Tsubaki doesn't stand a chance in heaven or hell of defeating Makoto, and that makes Noel's job relatively easy. Sometimes you don't need magic to make a difference in this world...
Rachel Alucard - "The Scarlet Onlooker"
Her handling of a noncombat Hazama encounter in her Continuum Shift bad ending. The guy chooses to drop her partway into the ground so she can listen to his usual rant about how the world is lies, how it needs to be purged, how Rachel can do squat to stop it. Since she's in no position to argue on a physical level, she just snarks back at him, countering every point she can or at least making his blood boil, especially by invoking his inner Green-Eyed Monster. Sure, he kicks her teeth in in the end, but points for putting on a brave front anyway.
Even earlier in Calamity Trigger, as a testament to her sheer power, she deploys the Tsukuyomi unit to deflect a city-destroying blast from Take-Mikazuchi.
She gets another moment in her CP Arcade. One of her matches pits her against Azrael, the Mad Dog himself. The two battle, but neither can defeat the other. So what's Rachel's repsonse? Does she cower in terror? Run off screaming? Nope! She delivers some Trash Talk and... casually teleports him away. Not bad, Little Miss Badass.
Litchi Faye Ling - "The Good Doctor"
The ending of Relatives is one for, of all people, Litchi - and it doubles as a heartwarmer. After Litchi manages to calm Carl down, Relius comes along and the Clovers proceed to throw down. Even though she was supposed to be working with the now-corrupt NOL, she insists on calling Relius out for his poor parenting - this after Carl and Ada are left broken. Granted, things would have ended poorly if Ada didn't evacuate them both, but it is proof enough that political allegience hasn't dulled her morality - and if she has the nerves for this, there may be hope for her own recovery yet.
Extra bonus points: If you consider that Relius is usually nonchalant and doesn't kill or fuck with people unnecessarily unless they of interest to him (unlike Hazama), the fact that Litchi made Relius drop everything (as much as you can say that) and try to kill her even if she's not 'a person of interest' or even worse, used to praise in the past as seen in the EX Story of Sector Seven, does speak a lot of how much her kind heart is capable of doing something that awesome (Relius is probably only stopped once he is told off-screen that she was supposed to be his ally, from Hazama). What's more, the early reports of Chronophantasma also showed that she still retain her sanity and kindness, when the corruption, by all means, should've stolen that from her. Yes, we probably could see recovery in both terms for her.
Early in the Chronophantasma story, Litchi gets one when Hazama approaches her... and starts flattering and molesting her. She just stands coldly and tells him to let go until he does, and coldly snarks back at Hazama. Yep, even with Hazama's mental penis or threats with Mind Eater, Litchi remains standoffish and unfazed, convinced that he's scum undeserving of her 'special attention'. In fact, in the Arcade and Versus modes, during their match intro, Litchi also gave us this gem to show her defiance:
I have no intention of co-operating!
In the Sector Seven story, when she manages to meet up with Tager, she finds herself set upon by Azrael and Nu-13at the same time, and both are out for blood. Kagura and Kokonoe realize the two of them are utterly screwed as is, so Kagura asks Kokonoe to trans him over... and then asks Litchi to hold Nu while he stalls Azrael (this way, Tager can charge in peace and teleport all three of them back to base). Litchi obliges, and (offscreen) stalls out Nu long enough to pull this off, leaving them alive and Azrael hungry. Do we need to remind you that Nu is the kind of girl who gives the likes of Ragna trouble? That should say enough.
Carl Clover - "The Prodigal Vigilante"
At the climax for Chronophantasma, Relius shows up to ruin Ragna, Noel and Bang's day, with the explicit intent of seizing the Lynchpin for his own devices. The group tries to strike back, but Litchi and Carl deny them, triggering a brief breakdown for Bang. But Carl makes it loud and clear throughout that he is not doing this for Relius' sake, and is only onboard to get Ada uninstalled from Nirvana. Even when Zero-Type Tsubaki and Makoto show up to relieve Ragna and Noel, the group continues to hold, up until Valkenhayn arrives to shift the balance and allow Bang to activate the Lynchpin with Rettenjou, denying Relius his prize. That's not Carl's magnum opus; what is is that, after denying Valkenhayn the privilege of finishing Relius (with the latter not attempting to avert his doom) and getting them out, Carl makes his intentions loud and clear - he intends to keep Relius alive long enough to get Ada restored, upon which Relius will be made to atone for his myriad atrocities. So while Carl did get on the bad side of a lot of people (however long that's going to last), he stalled out two of his closest friends, blocked an attack from one of the Six shaggin' Heroes, and tied the Mad Puppeteer up by his own strings, cutting Litchi loose in the process! TL;DR: while earlier in the story Relius goaded Carl into supporting him in exchange for getting Ada back, Carl is now in the position to hold him to his end of the bargain. Best of luck, kid.
Carl: Do understand, father: I have no intention of becoming like you. And when this is all over, I'm going to make you pay for what you've done. Relius: And I look forward to it.
Taokaka - "The Defender of Kaka Village"
Even though she does precisely jack and shit in Story Mode worth notice, Taokaka of all people gets a moment to shine in Arcade mode. Round 7 has her up against Noel, and after she wins, she gives her a place to go to they can meet Ragna together. This has the side effect of royally pissing Hazama off, as Noel dodged a trap he set for her, but whereas Makoto had a plan going into Slight Hope, Tao did this entirely by chance. But that's not what's awesome - what is is that Tao holds her goddamn ground against the son of a bitch until Phantom shows up, at which point Hazama leaves on the Imperator's orders. This is a considerable turn-around in comparison to Continuum Shift, where Hazama handed Tao her tail on a silver platter. Tao's CP Arcade is titled Growth for a good reason.