Game(s): The Fire Emblem series, Super Smash Bros.
- Skilled swordsman
- Talented commander
Ike hails from the Fire Emblem series, with a few cameos in the Super Smash Bros. series as well. He’s a skilled swordsman, head of the Greil mercenary company, wielder of the holy sword Ragnell, and an all-around badass. Throughout the fire emblem series, you get to see him progress from a naive and eager recruit, to a confident and capable commander, leading his mercenary company into battle.
In the Smash Bros. series, we see Ike take on a serious heavy-hitter type role, using Ragnell to send foes flying with HUGE blows. He possesses several of his special maneuvers and animations from Fire Emblem, as well as a counter maneuver similar to Marth and Roy.
With his medium-weight build and combat style, Ike could definitely be considered a Weapons Master class, of the Fighter archetype. That said, with his protective personality from Fire Emblem, and heavier build and combat style in the Smash Bros. series, he could also fit the Tank archetype as a Paladin. Honestly, how you approach him will be dictated by the diet you eat while performing The Ike Workout, as well as your own take on Ike’s personality.
Ragnell, Ike’s signature sword, is typically depicted as a two-handed blade, though Ike seems to wield it more like a hand-and-a-half bastard sword, vs a two-handed greatsword. At any rate, as usual, for European-style medieval combat, I would direct you towards HEMA, the Historical European Martial Arts movement. Here’s some sites to check out:
Also, here’s some videos on HEMA lonsword combat:
If you’re at all interested in learning European weaponry, I’d definitely recommend finding a local HEMA chapter. Barring that, you can also ask around at local Renaissance Festivals or Fairs about stage combat or general Western martial arts instruction.
Ike is the commander of an accomplished and successful mercenary company. This is not a skill easily learned. In addition to being trained by his father, Greil, Ike also had to learn on the go after his father died. Of course, you, as an average layperson, are probably not all that involved with large military companies. That said, you can still learn battlefield-effective strategies.
For training, we can look to games! My personal favorite battlefield strategy series is the Total War series. Rome 2, Medieval 2, and Empire are all excellent games, from different historical eras, and they are old enough that you should be able to get them relatively cheaply.
There’s tabletop options as well. The Warhammer and Warhammer 40K gamesets are always popular, if you have some money to spend on minis. You’ve also got Magic: The Gathering, which may not teach you too much about unit positioning and flanking, but it’s great for long-term strategy and resource management.
Barring all these, there’s always good old chess. A short time to learn, but a lifetime to master, chess is great for thinking ahead of your opponent, feints, flanking tactics, and sacrificial choices. You can play it online for free at http://www.chess.com/ and pick up some strategies at http://www.thechesswebsite.com/
Ike is a real “lead from the front” kind of guy. You have to be, in a mercenary company. Ike’s peers learn to respect him through his deeds and actions. Remember, when you’re in any kind of competitive situation, your peers will judge you first on what you can do, rather than what you say you can do. Honing your skills every day is the easiest way to become an authority figure on something (check out the Jerry Seinfeld Method).
Being an authority figure isn’t enough, however. You need to keep your brain as sharp as your body, so to speak, which is where your strategy and heart come into things. Being a person of your word is just as valuable as a person skilled in one ability or another. Ike, of course, had more proficient weapons masters in his company, especially when he first took command. He didn’t lead because he was an excellent swordsman. He lead because he was an excellent swordsman who also made good decisions, and did right by his people. Do good things for your people, live according to your word, and make calm-headed decisions in adversity. These are the hallmarks of an excellent leader.
That’s it for today. Make sure to check in Friday for The Ike Workout! Until then, remember to live boldly, change the world, and continue to be awesome!
Dan “DaRatmastah” Wallace