Greetings, professor! Nothing to report! Well, there is one thing. A Fire Emblem: Three Houses hacker has figured out how to recruit the man, the myth, the character whose voice you’re reading this in right now, the Gatekeeper, into his class. This has led to some fascinating discoveries.
In the weeks since Three Houses’ release, the Gatekeeper has become a phenomenon, with his bottomless well of pure-hearted kindness inspiring volumes of fan art and, of course, elaborate fantasies about what it would be like to romance him. However, he’s remained a nameless, un-recruitable NPC. Until now.
On Twitter, a Fire Emblem hacker named Christo “Cirosan” Brittain posted videos of both the Gatekeeper and the Death Knight chumming it up (read: slicing and dicing rando bandits) with his band of loveable anime scamps.
Given how frequently Death Knight shows up in various missions, it’s no surprise that he has a full suite of combat animations and abilities. Gatekeeper, on the other hand, cannot wade into the thick of battle unless combat animations are disabled. “In combat, he wields the mighty power of the jump cut,” Brittain said on Twitter.
Fortunately, if you turn animations off, it is possible to live the dream and have the Gatekeeper as a playable unit. In combat, he wields the mighty power of the jump cut. pic.twitter.com/vJf08hAKzH
— Cirosan (@CirosanCB) August 22, 2019
Brittain did this, he told Kotaku in a Twitter DM, by using a save-game editor to replace preexisting characters in his class with Death Knight and Gatekeeper. The old characters’ stats and abilities, he said, were overwritten with Three Houses’ internal data for Death Knight and Gatekeeper. Brittain also claims that Gatekeeper has his own ability set and default stats — including a charm stat of 99, the highest in the game.
If true, it’s almost like Three Houses’ designers knew what kind of impact the Gatekeeper’s weaponised charm offensive would have on the internet’s cold and calloused, but nonetheless still beating, heart.
However, hacking is the whole reason any of this is possible, so there’s a chance that Gatekeeper’s stats have been altered as well. Brittain acknowledged that it would be possible for him to alter stats, but said he hasn’t done so. As for the charm stat in particular, he’s not sure what to make of it. “It’s odd because I looked into it, and, to make a long story short, there’s a discrepancy in the internal files about what his stats should be,” he said. Nonetheless, it manifests as 99 in game.
Many of Gatekeeper’s other stats, Brittain further noted, seem to be default stats for other non-recruitable characters. He finds it “fascinating” that these characters not only have stats, but also don’t need any alterations to be functional in battle.
“As I’ve since discovered, his age (20) and height (1 cm) are also the age and height for most of the other units that go unused, of which there are hundreds in the game’s data, so they’re probably just placeholders,” Brittain said. “His suite of combat arts and abilities are oddly unique, though.”
Yes, you read that correctly: Gatekeeper is apparently 1 centimetre tall, which raises a lot of questions about the nature of Fire Emblem’s universe. Unfortunately, he has no support stats, which only raises further questions — for example: Why can’t I romance the Gatekeeper, Fire Emblem developers? If you knew we’d love him so much, why did you insist on keeping us at arm’s length?