Thursday, July 6, 2017

TBT: Misuhiro Yoko, a character for BESM

The following Big Eyes Small Mouth character was based on a minor background character from Revolutionary Girl Utena. She was originally posted to a RPG-related LiveJournal group (that I have since lost the name of) back in 2004.

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Possible Utena Character: Misuhiro Yoko


This character was inspired by the shadow-puppet girls in Revolutionary Girl Utena, with the UFO/alien theme being played up in the latest episodes I've seen (I'm up to #29). I don't know how well she would fit into an Utena game, but if I end up playing in the game a friend of mine plans to run, this is the character I'll propose first.

Note: Because I don't own the BESM Utena book, Yoko was built with BESM 2E Revised, using Teen Romance costs for skills.

Misuhiro Yoko, Ohtomi Academy student, Grade 8 (25 CP)


Stats: Body 4, Mind 7, Soul 4 (15 CP)
Derived Values: ACV 5, DCV 3, HP 40, EP 55, SV 8

Attributes: Appearance 1 (1 CP), Art of Distraction 2 (2 CP), Highly Skilled 1 (1 CP), Own a Big Mecha 2 (Flying Saucer, 25 MP) (5 CP), Personal Gear 1 (1 CP), Shape Change 2 (Change gender only) (3 CP).

Defects: Nemesis (Kiryuu Nanami) (1 BP), Skeleton in the Closet (Alien posing as human) (1 BP), Special Requirement (Lay an egg once a month) (1 BP).

Skills: Biological Sciences 1 (Botany) (2 SP), Disguise 1 (Make-up) (2 SP), Linguistics 2 (Alien [native], English, Japanese) (4 SP), Mechanics 1 (Aeronautics) (3 SP), Melee Attack 1 (Sword) (5 SP), Melee Defend 1 (Sword) (5 SP), Performing Arts 1 (Comedy; Dance) (5 SP), Physical Sciences 1 (Astronomy) (2 SP), Piloting 1 (Spacecraft) (2 SP).

OBM: Flying Saucer (25 MP): HP 60.
Attributes: A.I. 1 (Basic Remote Control: Egg) (1 MP), Extra Capacity 1 (1 MP), Flight 4 (16 MP), Heavy Armor 1 (4 MP), Space Flight 1 (2 MP), Summonable 1 (4 MP), Toughness 1 (4 MP).
Defects: Awkward Size 1 (1 MBP), No Arms (2 MBP), Poor Maneuverability 2 (2 MBP), Restricted Ground Movement (None) (2 MBP), Summoning Object (Egg) (1 MBP).

Personal Gear: fencing sword and protective gear; alien "egg" amulet (summons and controls OBM).

Yoko is a human-like alien who came to Earth about a year ago. She has no training at navigation, and her old, hand-me-down saucer is notoriously clumsy, so she soon crash-landed. She decided that enrolling in the school would be the perfect cover while she repaired her spaceship. She has managed to be assigned to a mostly abandoned building, with space to summon and work on her saucer; she has fixed the crash damage, but has not solved the ship's shaky handling, so dares not leave the relative safety of her new home.

Yoko is an excellent student, who has joined the theater and fancing clubs. She is fairly well-liked, in spike of Nanami-san tormenting her for being "weird"--but Nanami has yet to guess just how weird she really is! As an adolescent member of her alien race, Yoko lays a boldly patterned egg once a month; she can usually hide this process (and the resulting day or two of reduced energy) under the cover of "the monthly miracle." In Episode #27: "Nanami's Egg," Yoko may be responsible for the egg Nanami found; she hoped it would mess with her rival's gullible mind. The eggs are not fertile unless Yoko mates with one of her own kind, and she is not aware of any others currently living on Earth. Her saucer's remote is modeled after one of her eggs, but is far less delicate.

Yoko has one other alien power that she rarely uses, and never where she could be seen: Her species is able to switch gender at will (except when laying eggs). Her male form looks like a nearly identical twin, and she will claim to be her brother "Ryo" if seen in that form. (However, no "Misuhiro Ryo" is enrolled at Ohtori Academy, so "he" must vanish quickly if questioned.) She usually carries a boy's uniform in her duffel if she foresees any need to use this ability.

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I never did get an opportunity to play Yoko in BESM. However, she did form the starting point for a NPC I created for the long-running Buffy/Angel series that I joined soon after that original post. In that game, she was an international student from Japan, who was shy and awkward but a genius with math and science. Her secret was that she was a half-Byblos demon (a knowledge-seeking race from the Angel RPG) who had been stranded in this dimension and was trying to reestablish contact with her people. At one point, she managed to rope the superscientist player character into helping her traipse all over campus (and beyond), taking readings with some weird sensory apparatus of her own design, but I don't recall her story ever getting much further than that.

Since that game, I've read Neil Gaiman's surreal short story "How to Talk to Girls at Parties" (and more recently, the Dark Horse comic adaptation). If I ever use Yoko in another game, I expect that story to exert some influence on her, too.

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