Espers are a human-like race of beings that exist within the worlds of SaGa. In the English The Final Fantasy Legend trilogy of games on Game Boy, they are named "Mutants," though on the back of the packaging for the first game, the term ESPers is used when describing the character creation system of the game.

Espers look visually similar to humans but are distinguished from them by their pointy ears and natural gift with magic and Spell Arts. In the early entries, Espers are one of the few races that can naturally learn and control magic, though this trait was given to other races over the course of the series, Espers and their similar ilk are often shown to be much closer to the supernatural than humans.

Despite physical differences shown, Espers can have physical relationships with the other races with no consequences, even monsters. In later installments, Espers can even transform themselves into other races by consuming the flesh of monsters or augmenting their body with cybernetics to turn into robots.

Makai Toushi SaGa

Game Boy Version (Left: Esper Man, Right: Esper Girl)

Espers are one of the three starting races the player can choose to make their avatar. Espers are a finicky race who develop very differently from the other two races. After fighting a few battles, the Esper will grow in strength for one of their five stats, including HP. While this appears random most of the time, the type of equipment or use of magic will sometimes help to influence which stats are raised. If they use Agility based weapons like the Rapier, there is a good chance their stat increase will be in Agility. Taking damage and having low health will sometimes effect Defense and HP totals as well. Unfortunately there is no way to control this and there is no guarantee the stat will rise if you use certain abilities often. For these reasons, Espers start off a bit weak but quickly grow stronger than the other two races.

While Espers can equip normal armor and weapons like humans can, they are limited to only four slots, and there are certain pieces of equipment they simply can't use. Due to being able to use equipment and have a function Magic stat, Espers are the only race capable of bringing out the full potential of the few Magic based weapons in the game.

Espers are the only race capable of learning magic, while monsters can use magic, their spells and abilities are limited by their type and rank. Espers can learn up to four spells or abilities in the game which take up four slots within their inventory. Unfortunately, it is completely random what abilities they learn and the Esper can even forget and replace an old spell without the player realizing it. It is also possible for Espers to learn weaknesses to certain elements. For these reasons, if a player wishes to make the most of an Esper, they may have to frequently save and restart based on what they do just to prevent them from forgetting a useful healing or offensive spell just so they can learn a buggy spell or weakness. Despite these weakness, Espers excel at magic more than the other two races.

SaGa 2 Hihou Densetsu

Game Boy Version (Final Fantasy Legend II) (Left: Esper Boy, Right: Esper Girl)

Espers reappear as a race for SaGa 2. They remain largely unchanged outside of user-friendly improvements like notifications after battles on stat increases and spell changes. Their stat growth has been slightly altered due to humans now sharing similar leveling mechanics. While both races are similarly balanced in stats compared to Monsters and Robots, Espers are more magically inclined than humans and gain better MP for their abilities. In contrast, they usually gain less points in HP and strength.

Unlike humans who have to purchase spells, Espers still retain the ability to learn up to four spells/abilities of which they have more to choose from than the first entry. An Esper's starting spell is predetermined and based on the gender chosen for them. Females begin with Flame while males start with Blizzard. Much like the first entry, Espers excel with Magic based weapons and have more options to choose from than the first entry.

Espers will still learn spells during battle, but the process has been refined using a similar ranking system used for Monster Evolutions. All spells and passive abilities are ranked in tiers between Level 1 and Level 7, these ranks are cross-referenced with the rank of the monsters fought and depending on the monsters rank will determine which set of spells your Esper can learn. For the most part, stronger monsters offer the chance for the Esper to obtain stronger abilities, but this gets tricky if the player wishes to teach them a particular spell cause it might be a lower rank than the player thinks. Also, the unique elemental starting spell for an Espers gender can not be relearned if forgotten.

In the Ability Menu, the player now has the choice to choose the spell order, this is important because the final spell slot is the one that always changes when the Esper learns a new spell, so always be sure to rearrange less useful spells to the bottom of the four spells. It is also possible for Espers to learn multiples of the same spell allowing you to have four different sets of Cure spells for an example. Likewise, Espers can learn support skills that reduce damage from magic or physical attacks, as well as immunity to certain status magic. Likewise, they can also gain elemental weaknesses this way, though it's more common in the early stages.

SaGa 3 Jikuu no Hasha

The player character creation mechanic was dropped in SaGa 3, instead Polneraf and Milfie begin the game as Espers. The remain the team magic specialist, getting a bonus towards spells and gaining higher stats in Magic and MP. They are physically weaker than humans though, but can still use most equipment including some of the game's stronger magic based gear. Their stats are largely average compared to the other races in the game. Espers no longer naturally learn magic or gain passive abilities instead, they must be equipped with items to cast spells, but this also means they have more equipment slots to use.

They are also considered one of the Neutral races when utilizing the Transformation mechanic. Espers can transform into a monster or robot by eating monster meat or installing parts. They can always be reversed by using the opposite item to bring them back to an Esper.

Gallery

Makai Toushi SaGa (The Final Fantasy Legend)

Esper Man

Esper Girl

Makai Toushi SaGa (Wonderswan Version)

Esper Man

Esper Girl

SaGa 2: Hihou Densetsu (Final Fantasy Legend II)

Esper Boy

Esper Girl

SaGa 2: Hihou Densetsu: Goddess of Destiny

Esper Boy

Esper Girl

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