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Ch. 598 - The Shooting Star Project (We Only Have To Beat You Mix)

Xilinoc September 25, 2014 User blog:Xilinoc

Aaaaaand Senjumaru all badass and stuff.

So first off, we've got Ganju of all people interrupting the launch sequence; apparently, he's got a map of the Soul King Palace because reasons. Gotta say, his return was pretty funny, given that he and Ichigo haven't seen each other for several arcs. However, they're finally on their way to the palace, and Ichigo reaffirms that they're gonna defeat Yhwach and take Uryū back, which is good and all. Oh, and Kubo remembers that Yoruichi can turn into a cat. Good.

Back at the palace, we've got some elaboration on how The Wind works; Nianzol can deflect not the attacks from enemies that he can see, but attacks from enemies whose abilities he has seen. Oh, and he can use this power to cut people in half. Pretty legit ability, if you ask me. However, turns out Senjumaru's ready to show off, because apparently she can re-sew clothing or something to her liking...which allowed her to impale Nianzol with a dozen spikes from the inside out. Hot damn, that was cool.

Overall, nice chapter all around. Ganju coming back into the fray was nice, although I'm still curious about what the Fullbringers are gonna do in this arc. The explanation of The Wind was great, as was Senjumaru wrecking Nianzol, but I kinda hoped that he'd survive for at least another chapter. Oh well.

This week, I'm gonna go over the Quincy: Vollständig. Now, unlike last week essay on the Sternritter, I'm probably gonna be comparing this to Bankai and Resurrección because it's clear that they're all similar in terms of being the "final power-ups" of their respective users.

568As's Vollstandig, Tatarforas
584Bazz-B's Vollstandig

First off, let's go over appearance. It's obvious that Kubo is going for an angel motif here, judging by the wings and halo that every instance of this technique shares no matter what. The wings themselves are all varied rather interestingly, from lightning bolts to straight rods to hearts, and they seem to all be tied to the Schrift of their Sternritter user; additionally, some of them can be used as weapons, as seen with Candice and Bambietta. However, I noticed something a while back about the Quincy: Vollständig which have names; with the exception of Grimaniel, they all have much more individualized and stylized appearances when compared to the nameless Quincy: Vollständig used by other Sternritter. Take a look at Tatarforas, for example, and then look at Bazz-B and rods, or whatever those are. There's a very clear difference in how much effort Kubo puts into the appearance of the named and unnamed Quincy: Vollständig, and I imagine that he either comes up with a name composed of different words without a definitive meaning in a certain language, but that is composed of certain roots (e.g. Tartarus + Foras = Tatarforas, God + Eros = Gudoero), and decides that he might as well go the extra mile and make the Quincy: Vollständig stand out; or vice-versa. As such, I think only a few of the Quincy: Vollständig actually have names, and those are the ones with intricate designs beyond two wings and a halo (once again excepting Grimaniel, which means it's not exactly an iron-bound rule). Of course, it would be nice if they all had names because everyone loves names, but I can't fault Kubo for not wanting to put all that work into creating names out of different words and coming up with unique designs every time, which is a very different process compared to how he created Resurrección for Arrancar and Bankai for Shinigami, I'd imagine.

Speaking of Bankai and Resurrección, let's move on to power levels. I'm just gonna say flat-out that on average, the Quincy: Vollständig does not grant anywhere near as huge of a power boost as the other two aforementioned releases do, nor do they grant as much destructive power. With the exception of Bambietta and maybe Mask, I can't think of any Sternritter who gained the ability to cause widespread destruction after activating their Quincy: Vollständig (though Bazz-B may become another example if we get to see the aftermath of Burner Finger 4). However, I know that mass destruction isn't everything, and if we're talking about general combat enhancement...well, I'd say that the only one who's proven to receive a considerable power boost in that regard would be Quilge, since he managed to stalemate Ichigo's fake Bankai and completely overpower him in his Shikai. Candice might have gotten a lot more powerful in her Quincy: Vollständig, but since she was up against Ichigo with his true Shikai and all that, there's no way to know for sure. In terms of non-damaging abilities, Äs got a pretty scary upgrade with Tatarforas, but evidently that one could be overcome by realizing there's nothing to be afraid of, or...something (I don't know, Byakuya was in full vagueness mode back then). Presumably, PePe and his Gudoero could cause a lot of trouble for any opponent who isn't stoic like Byakuya or dead like Kensei, but we'll probably never know given what happened to him last chapter. Comparing how powerful each Sternritter becomes with their Quincy: Vollständig active to the power granted by Senbonzakura Kageyoshi, Los Lobos, etc. etc. brings me to my main claim: Quincy: Vollständig is less powerful than Quincy: Letzt Stil.



That may sound ridiculous given Quilge's explanation of how it's a perfected version of the Quincy: Letzt Stil, but hear me out. Let's take Quilge, the first Sternritter to use Quincy: Vollständig, and look at what he managed to do with it - primarily, overwhelming Ichigo in his Shikai and barely holding him off in his Bankai with Blut Vene, as well as having access to Sklaverei and so on. That's all well and good, but then let's look at what Uryū did with Quincy: Letzt Stil: he completely overpowered Mayuri with both speed and spiritual power, he had control over basically all the Reishi around him, and with one arrow - one arrow - he destroyed Konjiki Ashisogi Jizō, blew away most of Mayuri's torso, and destroyed block after block of the Seireitei behind Mayuri with the rest of that power. That kind of damage and power increase is insane compared to what we've seen most Sternritter do after using the supposedly "perfected" form of the Quincy: Letzt Stil. I know that using the Quincy: Letzt Stil robs one of their Quincy powers and all that, but to me, that just means that the only real advantage of Vollständig over Letzt Stil is how long you can use it for - and given that the Sternritter are supposed to die anyway to keep Yhwach alive, it'd make more sense for them to be using Letzt Stil and at least have a better chance of killing their Shinigami opponent before dying, at least as far as I'm concerned.

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