What is the Worst Possible Sakura Wars GB Playthrough?

Sakura Wars GB is one of the most unique spinoffs in the entire Sakura Wars franchise. Not only did it release on the handheld of Sega’s rival, Nintendo, in an era where Sega was still producing consoles but it’s also the only game in the franchise where you play as a self-inserted character interacting with the franchise’s main cast. The gameplay loop is also different from every mainline Sakura Wars game so let’s explain that before I get into the real meat of this article. 

In this game you take control of a nameless character who the fanbase has affectionately named GB-Kun. You will be staying at the franchise’s Grand Imperial Theater for a month with the task of training with each member of the Flower Division. Days are separated into two training segments and two dialogue segments. During your first training session of the day you will train with a specified member of the Flower Division while your second training session will allow you to choose who to train with. 

Dialogue segments meanwhile will have you select an area of the theater to visit and interact with the various characters via the franchise’s trademark timed choice system LIPS to either raise or lower your affection with them. Under normal circumstances you cannot tell which character is in what room but if you talk to Yuri at the beginning of a week she will actually let you know where one character is for the full week!

At the end of each week you will take an exam where you enter a mock battle against an enemy. These battles are very simplistic turn based fights where you must select to attack, defend, or back away from an enemy attacking you. On the final day of the game you will take your final exam where based on your battle performance and training stats you will be given a final ranking and job.

An average GB playthrough takes only about two to three hours and it’s very replayable. As such it was inevitable that at least one player would ask themselves “What is the worst possible end result we can get?”. Now, the game does feature several bad ends where you get fired from the theater so theoretically all we need to do is rush to one of those, but where’s the fun in that?

No, instead Discord and Reddit user orig4mi decided they would get to the very end of the game and pass every single exam with the worst results possible while also antagonizing the game’s entire cast. In their mind they were creating a scenario where the reason GB-Kun isn’t mentioned in any game released after GB is because the entire cast hates him.

And so many Sakura Wars fans watched orig4mi’s playthrough with anticipation. His plan was simple, simply sleep through every training segment and intentionally pick the worst LIPS choices during every dialogue segment. This would result in an endgame where your stats haven’t been increased at all and your trust with every character is as low as possible. 

Unfortunately a no training playthrough is actually impossible as the very first day of the game requires you to train with Sakura. So while orig4mi wanted all of their stats to be at their minimum they got a small boost to their accuracy and spirit power. Other than that small hurdle however there was no issue with just sleeping through every training segment.

The dialogue segment portion of this playthrough proved to be much more humorous than expected as Sega surprisingly allows GB-Kun to be a complete jerk to the entire cast if the player so chooses. From tossing Iris’ diary in the trash to telling Maria that a dress doesn’t fit her, your evil shall know no bounds! It’s a miracle that there is no ending for the Flower Division killing you based on how cruel you can be to them in some of these events.

Now while the dialogue segments were overall hurdleless because characters like Sumire set themselves up to be insulted by evil GB-Kun, others like Kohran can be harder to make mad. In one particular segment all three dialouge choices made Kohran happy and thus the only way to make her mad was to reload and just let time run out all together!

Now while those two large segments of the game are relatively stress free, passing the exams is much harder. While he didn’t actually need to pass the exams to finish the game he chose to anyway. It wasn’t enough for GB-kun to just ignore the entire Flower Division’s training and be complete jerks to them. He needed to prove that he could pass the exams and surpass them while doing nothing but sleep for a month! Is this final insult to the Flower Division possible?

While the first few exams weren’t too much of an issue aside from some save state reloading, the final exam took nearly four efforts of retries and will be the one I highlight in this article. It’s time to look under the hood of GB and examine how these mock battles actually work.

Because orig4mi’s stats were at base level the only way to win these fights would be to rely on the enemy to keep taking actions where it doesn’t attack. This is pure RNG and would require a lot of save stating to pull off, but how does this RNG work? It’s unfortunately not as simple reloading before each action the enemy takes and rolling the dice. Instead all actions the enemy takes are part of a set seed determined on the frame you select which mech you’ll use in the battle.

Thankfully Sakura Wars GB battles aren’t the deepest thing in the world and there’s only so many actions an enemy can take, so all you would theoretically need to do is find a seed where an enemy takes enough passive actions for you to win. As such orig4mi spent several hours making every possible choice during a set seed to determine if it was winnable. If it wasn’t he would reload a save state from before he selected his mech, wait another frame so the seed would change, and repeat the process.

The best possible seed would be one where the enemy takes nothing but passive actions the entire time and just let’s you attack it. However this scenario is almost certainly impossible as there is unlikely to be a seed like this. Thus our best theoretically possible seed would be one where the enemy moves to body blow range where it can be stunned several times and thus stay stun locked long enough to be killed.

Thus orig4mi tried again and again for hours but at the end of the day unfortunately had to concede and just fail the final exam. It was a hard fought battle and while it is theoretically possible it just isn’t feasible for a normal human to win this fight with base stats. As such orig4mi threw in the towel and just continued to the ending.

After a month of constantly sleeping through training sessions, insulting the Flower Division at every turn, and barely passing a majority of exams Evil GB-kun was given the job of Janitor. Presumably they got sent off to New York along with all the other problem people the Flower Division gets rid of over the years

And that was orig4mi’s worst possible playthrough of Sakura Wars GB! With the English Sakura Wars fanbase finally going through a renaissance after all these years I think we can expect more and more people like him to pop up and begin playing these games in unique ways. As someone who wants to keep track of this young English fanbase in all its forms while we still can you expected me to document them as well. I’m Skeith from The Story Arc, signing out.

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