Final Fantasy Omega
Weight: 175 lbs
Born: Imona 11th, 87 AE
Home: Unnamed island north of Donnerich
Theme: Battle Without Honor or Humanity, Tomoyasu Hotei
Class: Arcane Duellist
The gunfighter who was born as Karl Sever is usually the tallest man in any room, which makes his lean frame look almost gaunt despite his acrobat’s build. His unruly mop of light blond hair either hangs in loose curls past his ears, or is pulled back in a tight ponytail. Kogel wears his sideburns a bit longer than is usually fashionable, although given a week or two without shaving he will sport a ragged blond beard that has been described as “shave that off right now” by many.
Kogel is one of the seven percent of humans on Damocles that has an adverse reaction to Restore materia, and thus finds healing spells not only painful but is marked by the scars left behind. His torso and arms are marked with numerous scars and healed wounds, each telling a story of his life of violence.
After Garamonde 114, Kogel changed up his wardrobe, stating that being easily recognized for his outfit was often a barrier to the subtle work that a bounty hunter sometimes needs to do. These days, Kogel usually wears a pair of black pinstriped Unconquerable Amagis trousers, close-fitting and tucked into a set of black-and-red leather Firaga Greaves. A sleeveless white tank top and suspenders are covered by a black jacket, almost a fashionable version of a school uniform, the C. Tunoku Special Edition. Mariano has altered his traditional wide-brimmed black hat with silver chocobo feather to a less-distinctive short-brimmed bowler-style, working the silver feather into the hatband. He still wears a pair of wire-rimmed round glasses not because of any problems with his eyesight, but rather because they make him look more like his father. He also sports a pair of thin black leather gloves with the index and second fingers cut out to better grip his pistols, and on each hand he wears a different ornate silver ring – the Unstoppable Force on the left and the Wall Ring on the right. Around his neck he sports an unassuming blue seashell on a leather thong, the link to the Totema of Water.
Kogel’s personality can best be described as mercurial, with his normally gregarious and captivating nature occasionally interrupted by bouts of anger and melancholy. While not above using his charisma to bluff and mislead others, once he gives his word there is little on Damocles that can convince him to break it. One of his greatest character flaws is his arrogance, occasionally dictating a course of action without consulting his comrades. In addition, Kogel’s cool and professional demeanor hides a slow-burning but intense temper, easily triggered when he sees innocents harmed.
Despite his inner turmoil, Kogel is as quick with affection and friendship as he is with rage, and has developed lasting friendships with those he’s allied himself with over the years. He is also among the first to offer mercy to an adversary and the chance to seek a nonviolent resolution to a conflict – so long as they have not wound up on his bad side.
Karl Sever was born to Thierry and Freya Sever, a materia scientist and his wife on a small island north of Donnerich. The small island was home to a few dozen families, all living simple lives away from the crowded and chaotic cities of the world.
Yet all was far from idyllic on the island, as Thierry’s obsession with his research led to him becoming distant from his family, including an extramarital affair with Allison Jones, which produced Karl’s younger half-brother Lamec. As a child, Karl was the peacemaker among the village youths, but his strained relationship with his father resulted in numerous childish outbursts and minor rebellions.
During one of these outbursts, it was discovered that Karl had an innate ability to destroy materia orbs – a feat that normally required dangerous experimentation in a laboratory. Despite his father’s curiosity about this ability, it did not serve to draw Thierry and his son any closer together and the wedge between the two remained until tragedy struck.
In the spring of 98 AE, a detachment of the Donnerich Navy landed on the island under reports from Coren Jones – an inhabitant of the island and cuckolded husband of Alison – about dangerous research conducted by Thierry Sever. When Lamec was threatened by one of the soldiers, his mother intervened and was shot down by a soldier – and in that moment everything changed for Karl. He picked up a soldier’s fallen pistol and began to fight back, killing everyone in a uniform that he saw. In retaliation, the soldiers set fire to the village and began a massacre that left Karl as the only survivor, or so he believed. Under cover of darkness, the young boy took a small boat and left the island and the painful memories behind.
Between the ages of ten and fifteen, Karl lived as a vagabond, learning the ways of the street orphans of various cities and slowly teaching himself the trade of bounty hunting. At fifteen, he completed his first bounty in Night’s Run and started a full-fledged career earning a reputation as a relentless hunter of men, despite his youth.
At sixteen, Karl took a contract from the city of Night’s Run to assist their militia in quelling a separatist revolt. After an ambush, Karl found himself captured and tortured for months before being rescued by a SeeD squad during the final days of the revolt. As a result, Karl developed an intense dislike for the military and the politicians who would send soldiers into harm’s way.
In early winter, 105 AE, Karl took a year-long contract as bodyguard and enforcer to a “Baron” Utrecht], owner of a silver mine in the mountains west of Luxuocidad. Karl quickly discovered that Utrecht was a cruel tyrant, working his people close to death and selling many of them off as slaves as payment for forced debt. Despite his misgivings and the weight on his conscience, Karl obeyed the letter of his contract, acting as Utrecht’s right hand and garnering him the epithet “Praga” – the Plague – from the workers.
The night that his contract ended, Karl set fire to Utrecht’s manor and armed the workers in open rebellion against their employer. The rebellion was a failure, as the Baron had prepared for Karl’s change of heart and hired mercenaries. Wounded, Karl managed to get a few dozen of the workers to safety, leading them through the mountains as he continued on alone. After days of walking, he collapsed at the steps of a hidden monastery among the peaks.
The monks of the monastery, overseen by one Brother Hammer, nursed Karl back to health and rekindled his faith in humanity. That summer, Karl would leave the monastery to go back to the world, taking the name “Kogel” as his new identity – a word meaning “bullet” in the dialect of his homeland, signifying that he would now be a weapon against anyone who would harm the innocents.
In late 112 AE, Kogel met Naoko Kyuudou, a young SeeD trainee and the two of them became de facto partners, with Kogel remaining “unofficially affiliated” with SeeD for a number of months. When Naoko was promoted to Squad A under the command of Champ Justice, Kogel continued to partner with the two agents, often butting heads with their boss, SeeD Commander Canute.
The trio would encounter many trials together – none greater than the Donnerich Council framing them for terrorism resulting in the apparent murder of President Cidolfas Coppola. Only through some fast-talking legal delaying tactics and the last-minute testimony of the very-alive President Cid, the three were acquitted and quickly became minor celebrities.
One of the most harrowing experiences Kogel had alongside Naoko was encountering the killer known only as Taijiya the Slayer. After realizing that the Slayer was killing individuals associated with the massacre on Kogel’s island, it was discovered that Taijiya was in face Lamec, Kogel’s presumed-dead half-brother, but that Lamec had been tortured and manipulated into becoming a killing machine by Coren Jones, the third and final survivor of the island. Refusing to fight his own family, Kogel was able to reawaken Lamec’s personality and exorcise the demon of the Slayer from him. The two brothers have since attempted to rebuild not only their home, but some semblance of a family as well.
Kogel’s fame would reach its height at the 113 AE Tournament of Garamonde, where he finished first in Sharpshooting and won the Striestadt-Donnerich Rally Race along with his “mechanic-with-benefits”, Daryl Gabbiani of SeeD. Daryl and Kogel would begin a romantic relationship during the tournament that would continue to the surprise of nearly everyone around them.
At the culmination of the tournament, Kogel took the stage and openly challenged Luxuocidad’s governor Michael Avar, accusing him of treason and conspiracy. While Avar was brought to justice, Baron Utrecht (who had become the Lieutenant Governor of Luxuocidad in the intervening years) escaped.
Life, Death, and Life Again
After Garamonde and the revelation of his past to his comrades, Kogel and his brother Lamec began the long process of rebuilding their former island home. Kogel began to take a greater interest in his father’s research, discovering an innate skill with materia use and vowing to bring to justice those who had perverted Thierry’s work for evil ends.
On a trip to the Northern Continent, Kogel was struck down by a soldier’s Thundaga spell. The attack was vicious enough to stop the gunman’s heart and on the shores of a foreign land, Kogel’s life ended. Only through the quick intervention of his friend Kalil, and the link shared by Kalil, Cloud Strife, Zack Fair, and Kogel was the gunman brought back to the realm of the living, although not unchanged by the experience.
After his fatal experience, Kogel discovered a new love of life, casting aside his former nihilistic attitude. This rekindled passion brought with it a new set of trials, as Kogel found his temper harder to rein in, and has found himself at odds with his comrades on a number of occasions.
In late spring of 114 AE, Kogel and his friends were imprisoned in their own private worlds by Lord Hades, who had seized control of the Aeon of Time. Kogel found himself fifteen years in the future living on his island – now named Harvest – and married to Daryl with one son and another on the way. Leaving behind this false future ranks among the most difficult choices Kogel has ever had to make, and has been dwelling on his mind ever since.
The Story As Of Late
Upon returning from what has been dubbed the Ordeal, Kogel found himself confronted on multiple occasions with problems that could not be simply solved with black-and-white morality, namely dealing with the Boryokudan and the complexities of the individuals he’d tried to write off as irredeemable criminals. Rather than risk the friendships he’d worked hard to cultivate, Kogel agreed to set aside his deep-seated anger towards the Boryokudan and instead to follow Champ and Naoko’s lead.
Kogel’s internal turmoil came to a head at Garamonde 114, when the group confronted the Boryokudan directly and welcomed Mist Walker back into the fold, ostensibly to protect her from internal backlash within the Boryokudan organization. Seeing the legitimate care and familial protectiveness that these criminals showed towards Mist, Kogel was challenged to see them as people, rather than targets.
The experience, however, only doubled Kogel’s resolve in the Garamonde tournament. To everyone’s surprise, he managed to defeat Darien Reinholder in the Spellcraft tournament, eventually finishing second to Aidan Denun in the finals. Handily winning the Sharpshooting competition, Kogel’s legend as the greatest gunman on Damocles grew, although he considers the crowning achievement of the tournament not to be his Sharpshooting win or even his second-place finish in the No Limits tournament, but instead partnering with Sephiroth to rise in the Tag Team tournament and overcome numerous trials to finish second, showing that cooperation between non-summoners and Aeons is possible.
The month also brought significant progress in Kogel’s romantic life, as he made the decision to propose to his girlfriend, Daryl. So far he has only confided in Naoko and Lamec (as well as unintentionally revealing the information to Kerrigan) about his plans, requesting Naoko’s help in ring shopping.
Kogel is one of the few people on Damocles who can be considered not only a practicioner of the art of the gun, but many would contend he is a master of the art. His innate skill and natural agility make him a force to be reckoned with, and his quicker-than-the-eye draw is often the last thing an opponent sees.
Kogel has also become an accomplished materia user, although his skills lie more in the innovative combinations of materia through the Materia Fusion ability he learned from Zack Fair. In addition, Kogel is one of only two known individuals on Damocles (the other being Romaji Kaigo) capable of accessing the Fourth Vein of a materia orb, often with devastating effects.
While never one to be considered a skilled melee combatant, Kogel has shown a significant amount of ruthlessness, bordering on viciousness, in hand-to-hand fighting. Having learned some of Seifer Almasy’s skill with the gunblade Hyperion, as well as training with Ramirez in underhanded chain-fighting tactics, Kogel has shown something of a brutally pragmatic streak when forced into melee combat.
Depending on the weapon he wields, Kogel’s Limit Breaks showcase either his incredible speed and accuracy or his ability to harass and debilitate a foe on the battlefield.
Kogel’s Omega Limit Break relies on his connection to Bahamut, King of Dragons. Time stops for the gunman, as he takes a number of actions before the flow of time resumes and Bahamut unleashes a mighty Mega Flare attack.
Kogel possesses the unique Life materia, and has used its power for tasks ranging from curing an undead infection to helping restore Arich and Rachel Zokkunen to life, to reconstructing Kouhei Castle from ruins.
Quirks and Traits
- Kogel is something of a Big Eater, a habit picked up from his time living on the streets – “When you get free food, get as much of it as you can.”
- While Kogel does not believe in wasting money gambling, he has bought every expansion and booster pack for Triple Triad, which he tends to play on his PHS when waiting for anything.
- Kogel has read enough (translated) Old World poetry to have a grasp on the language, although he has never learned to decipher the runic alphabet of that era.