Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Mecha Kaiju Sensō Tai!!!: Gamera


Gamera (1965)

Gamera is really neat. The ‘90s Gamera trilogy directed by Shusuke Kaneko remains a high-water mark in kaiju cinema, being to giant monster movies what Watchmen (or, perhaps more aptly, Miracleman) is to superhero comics. The original films from the ‘60s and ‘70s are also certainly special in their own right; my favorite is Gamera vs. Barugon, possibly the only kaiju movie that’s also a heist film. There’s a reason I own both DVD and Blu-Ray copies of almost every Gamera film* (even if the DVDs of the original series have this sleepy-eyed guy and his robots talking over the films).

Gamera is also – as the both series of films take pains to point out – filled with meat. There’s a pretty obviously deliberate gross-out aesthetic to the movies, especially the kid-oriented entries in the original series. Gamera bleeds – a lot – and other monsters routinely get body parts severed. The trailer for the apparently aborted 2016 relaunch (available on YouTube) demonstrates this with a shot of a Gyaos being literally fried by Gamera’s flame breath (including exploding eyeball).

Finally, Gamera is really sweet. Aside from his debut film (in which he’s still oddly friendly with children) and the aforementioned vs. Barugon (in which the Godzilla Threshold makes him the hero), Gamera is almost always played as an overt hero. Admittedly, in the ‘90s movies – especially Gamera 3: The Revenge of Iris – he’s not so much the defender of humanity as he is the protector of the biosphere, but he’s still the good guy.

But, again, Gamera is full of meat, as that film shows when the villainous Iris destroys one of his hands. So we’ve got – in opposition to Godzilla – an overtly heroic, armored yet vulnerable, flying turtle who is the friend to all children. On the one hand, he’s constantly getting injured; on the other hand, he’s invulnerable to human weapons. He’s a bit of a puzzle to stat out.

Hmm...

Let's consider this version a blending of the Showa and Heisei Gameras (leaning more toward Heisei). He's shorter than Godzilla (as Gamera always is) thereby reducing his Toughness a bit; we'll also give his armor the Major Limitation "can be bypassed with a Called Shot." His damage field is the jets produced when he flies, so it's Contingent on activating his flight. I think this will work.

Gamera 3: The Revenge of Iris (1999)
Seasoned Heavy Hitter Wild Card Kaiju (25 XP)

Attributes: Agility d8, Smarts d6, Spirit d8, Strength d12+7, Vigor d10
Skills: Fighting d8, Flying d6, Intimidation d6, Notice d6, Shooting d10, Swimming d8
Charisma: -4; Pace: 24 (Fly Mach 2+, Swim 32); Parry: 7; Toughness: 40 (12)
Hindrances:Heroic [Major], Ruthless [Major], Illiterate [Minor; unable to communicate through speech or writing with humans], Weakness [Minor; cold]
Edges: AB: Super Powers, Acrobat, Dead Shot, Fast Healer, Take the Hit
Gear: Atlantean magatama
Super Powers
  • Absorption (2): fire/heat
  • Aquatic (2)
  • Armor (4): Armor +12, Heavy Armor, Major Limitation (can be bypassed with called shot)
  • Attack, Melee (20): bite or elbow spikes; 4d6+d12+7 (10); AP 10 (5), Focus (3), Heavy Weapon (-), Switchable (2) or Damage Field (19): fiery jets; 5d6; AP 10 (5), Heavy Weapon (-)
  • Attack, Ranged (24): cone of fire or plasma ball; 6d10 (10); AP 10 (5), Cone (1), Enhanced Damage (4), Focus (3), Heavy Weapon (-), Range 12/24/48, Switchable (2) or Flight (23):fiery jets; -8 Attack Penalty (18), Climb 6 (3), Switchable (2)
  • Regeneration (7): Recovery, Regrowth
  • Resistance (1): fire/heat,  
  • Toughness (10)
  • Kaiju: fear (non-kaiju only, Scary, Terror), gargantuan (Size +11, Heavy Armor, Heavy Weapons)

*I really can’t stand Gamera the Brave and so do not own a copy.

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