|Ryūga-verse Garo Armor|
|Lost Shine Garo|
Garo is a Makai Armor that specializes in longsword combat. Whoever wields the armor shall take the title of Garo the Golden Knight (黄金騎士・牙狼（ガロ） Ōgon Kishi Garo, lit. "Fanged Wolf"). In the Ryūga-verse, the armor never belonged to the Saejima Clan. A former Golden Knight sacrificed his life and the armor made it to Ryūga Dōgai as its most recent successor. This armor first appears in The One Who Shines in the Darkness.
Description & Characteristics
The origins and history of this armor are different than the original. The armor is also composed of Soul Metal, but in this universe, the alloy originates from the body of Zedom. Because of that, the armor is susceptible to Zedom's influence. In the original universe, the golden shine of the armor is merely a decorative feature, but in this universe, the radiant shine actually emits an energy wave that has a negative effect upon Horrors. Another difference though is that the original armor was designed to convert people's feelings into energy, capable of temporarily transforming and increasing the power of Garo. However, the armor relies on Makai Priests and its knight to give it new powers and alternate forms.
Because this armor has magical powers tied to its golden shine, Horrors have trouble tolerating Garo's radiant energies. If used correctly, the user can channel the armor's latent powers to help defeat powerful enemies. However, should the energies be spent, the golden shine can be lost and the armor will physically transform into a blackened state, making it less effective against Horrors. To restore its full combat potential, the seedlings of Zedom can be converted into energy that can help replenish Garo's lost shine. However, it requires experienced priests to extract and re-energize the armor. The golden shine has been successfully restored by the efforts of Makai Priestess Hakana Dōgai. However, it would be its first and last time to do so as Zedom was defeated and his surviving body parts (which can reform him and enable him to be re-purposed as the source of Soul Metal) has been scattered to parts unknown. Until an alternative source of soul metal can be found, expending its golden energies again can no longer be restored.
For combat, the armor's radiant energies can weaken nearby Horrors like a powerful sunbeam towards a vampire. Much like its counterpart, Garo relies mainly on longsword and close-quarters combat to defeat its enemy. A difference though is the twin grappling hooks on Garo's back (featured in Flower of Makai) isn't present and the lack of Gōten, Garo's Madōba in the original universe. The Garo of this universe doesn't have one and relies on other means to defeat its target; this includes the inability to enhance his sword. However, it's unclear if it's time limit usage as never once the 99.9 seconds rule was applied and other armors are known to last beyond the presumed time limit they can utilize their armor. It was either a continuity error or Makai Armors don't have the same time limitations as knights within this universe.
Garo's Flight form is a permanent upgraded form with the help of Priestess Ryūme. While helping Ryūga Dōgai cleanse the armor of Jaki (dark energies), Ryūme magically altered and enhanced Garo. However, to what end is unclear as Garo never exhibited any special abilities after its new form. The only thing visibly different from the armor is an improved look and thicker armor. Its forearm blade is now gone, this prevents Garo from making slash attacks upon targets, but the forearm is thicker, with a reinforced end near the elbow, giving Garo harder physical back strikes and blocking. The overall new coverage makes Garo less susceptible to damage and fatigue for its user. No special gimmicks have been revealed yet.
Fallen Priestess Amily sent Ryūga into her Demon Mirror, where one is forced to face their own darkness. While inside, Ryūga's fears and darkness manifested itself into a large dark bestial form of the Garo Sword and attacked him. The greater his fear, the stronger the beast became. However, after realizing what the beast really meant and that his desire to protect the people that mattered to him, Ryūga made peace with his darkness, losing its golden shine once again, and discovered a new hidden power, Dark Garo.
Dark Garo is a temporary form that resembles the blackened armor color scheme of its Lost Shine form. Much about this form is unexplained, but the main difference now is that Garo can fly. In his darkness form, the armor can spring a bat-like cape, granting him temporary flight, but it's unclear if it did enhance its user's power. The dark armor is only temporary, long enough to allow Ryūga to slay a flying target for a few minutes before reverting back to it's ironic (non) Flight form.
- Goldstorm: When Jinga absorbing Radan's powers, it took the souls of everyone in Line City. After Ryūga witnessed the fall of Rian, he reacted in deep sorrow and the souls resonated with Garo. The captured souls found their way to Garo and turned it into a giant spiritual version of Garo. Composed of life energy itself, Goldstorm Garo helped defeat Radan.
- Kirin Reach (キリンリーチ Kirinrīchi): A possible form of Garo currently only seen in the pachinko games. Kirin Reach is accessed via a powerful fusion between Ryūga, while in Garo Flight mode, and a part of the power of the mythical beast "The Kirin" that wreaks havoc during the story. This form could be considered an upgrade of the Flight Mode, with Garo new golden wing being detachable from it's body and the actual flight ability being sustained by it's golden aura. While in this form, Garo gains the flight and golden fire that greatly enhances his Blazing Armament, enough to be capable to compete the Kirin itself.
Weapons & Equipment
- Garoken (牙狼剣 Garōken, Fanged Wolf Sword): In normal conditions, the Sword of Garo appears to be a plain light short sword akin to Chinese Jian. However, the scabbard is more decadent in western design. Appearing as a red wooden scabbard, it carries the golden triangular symbol of Garo; the scabbard itself is stronger than normal wood as it is capable of withstanding sword strikes without a scratch. When the knight uses the sword to summon Garo, the sword transforms into a western style longsword (akin to medieval knights). The mystical/magical properties of the sword make it more powerful than regular swords. The blade doesn't dull compared to regular swords. As the weapon is made of soul metal, relative to the knight's skills, he can manipulate the weight of the weapon to increase or decrease it in different situations to increase or minimize damage. When Garo lost its shine, the sword and scabbard became white. After its shine was restored, the sword returned to red. However, it was later enhanced with three shurikens on the scabbard. Ryūga only needs to focus and the blades will activate on his will. In its activated form, the shurikens have no influence in the battle. They are only available in its dormant state.
Notes & Trivia
The Garo armor is typically passed on an inheritance from the previous generation, or master to disciple in the case of Ryūga after the bloodline of the previous bearer ended. The usual change in the armor after it has been passed is the eyes color.
- Ryūga Dōgai had green eyes during his time as a Lost Shine Garo, and orange eyes during his time as a restored Garo.
Articles & References