Anyone who has watched Bofuri would easily recognize the overpowered female shielder named “Maple.” After the anime Rising of the Shield Hero, everyone went crazy for Bofuri and referred to Maple as the female version of the Shield Hero, Naofumi.
Maple is the game name of an average middle school female student, Kaede. Kaede’s family background is unknown, but it would seem like she is also an only child, the same as Lisa (Check out our article about Sally).
Kaede goes to the same school as her best friend, Lisa. They are classmates and childhood friends. They have been best friends ever since they were very little.
Kaede has no interest in video games, but Lisa is crazy about them. One day, Lisa managed to buy a new type of game that is Virtual Reality based. However, Lisa couldn’t play the game because of her school standing. Lisa’s parent’s condition is that she must pass her major exam before she can play again.
Lisa thought letting the game wait for her to finish her exam would be a waste. At the same time, Lisa also wants Kaede to play the game with her. So Lisa introduced the game to Kaede and let Kaede explore it in advance until Lisa can finally play it.
When Kaede signed up for the game, she chose the name “Maple” since her Japanese name, Kaede, can be translated as Maple in English. While selecting a character name was easy for her, she had difficulty choosing the right type of character for her. She considered what she liked and didn’t like in choosing the stats and weapons for her character.
Maple thought that since this VR game she was playing, she presumed that she might experience pain if monsters or players attacked her. Kaede hates getting hurt, so she decided to max her defense instead, thinking that having a strong defense might minimize the pain she would experience since she would get less damage.
Maple also thought that since she was going to focus on defense, it was just logical to choose a shielder type of character.
Since she does not know video games or even MMORPG, Maple decided to figure things out on the fly.
As she is sent to the game world, she realizes she walks very slowly since she doesn’t have agility because Maple allocated all her stats on defense. Maple approaches other players to ask for information, and she ends up having Frederica as the player she talked to in the game.
Maple is very friendly and loves to take adventures. In the game, Maple is very curious about everything. She likes to explore different places, experience new things, and discover fascinating stuff. Sally and Maple get along well in this regard. They would often explore various places on different floors in the game together and just try to enjoy everything.
Maple is very much a happy-go-lucky person than Sally. While she plans what she likes to do, Maple prefers just to let things happen and deal with situations as they come. Because of this kind of personality, she always finds solutions to tight spots in an unorthodox manner.
Maple is resourceful in fixing problems. There are many instances when all her equipment gets broken, so she would use her teeth instead to kill boss enemies, resulting in her getting weird skills that the game developers never anticipated.
Maple is highly competitive despite her optimistic personality. She takes everything as a challenge to go forward and improve. Because of this, Maple ends up having too many rivals that she’s happy to spar with. In spite of having several rivals, Maple never makes enemies. Instead, she makes friends with her rivals.
Maple’s bubbly and friendly character invites people closer to her. Thus, Maple often catches people’s attention unintentionally. Eventually, she became the center of attention in the VRMMORPG, New World Online.
Strength and Weaknesses
Maple’s strength lies mainly in her unmatched defense stats. She has the strongest defense of all players in the game. This is because Maple of overpowered skills that she obtained when she was still starting out in the game.
Maple’s skills “Absolute Defense” multiplies the Vitality by two, and “Giant Killing” doubles the total Vitality stats. Because of this, Maple’s Vitality, including vitality stats gained from equipment, is multiplied by four.
In Chapter 440 of the light novel, Maple has reached more than 24,000 vitality stat, far beyond what any player could even reach.
Even though Maple has the highest vitality among all players, Maple is very vulnerable to piercing attacks (attacks that ignore defense) and terrain damage (continuous damage from the environment such as lava damage and drowning).
While immobilizing Maple would not damage her by itself, she will have difficulty protecting her guildmates and be vulnerable to being targeted by piercing attacks. This has always been Maple’s weakness. Fortunately, Maple has acquired skills that will help her get through when immobilized.
Another glaring weakness that Maple struggles with is her lack of speed. Because Maple allocates her stats only on Vitality, her walking speed is the bare minimum. To increase her speed, Maple has to allocate some of her stats to Dexterity, but at this point, it is very useless now since her passive skills can only supplement her Vitality stats.
Thankfully, Maple has other ways to compensate for her lack of speed. One of which is her skill Atrocity which allows her to transform into a boss-like demon who can run faster than Sally.
Maple also has her Machine God skill which she uses to catapult herself into the air to wherever direction she wants to go by shooting her barrels to the ground. Only Maple is capable of doing this feat because she doesn’t take any damage from falling from the sky or any high altitude.
Maple has also found a workaround to fly in the sky that the developers failed to anticipate. Maple combines two skills to make Syrup (Maple’s pet) fly in any direction. First, Maple makes Syrup use Enlarge skill, which expands Syrup’s size. Then Maple uses Psychokinesis to make Syrup float and move towards whichever direction Maple desires.
Maple is also very good at combining many of her skills to create a combo that no one can anticipate, not even the developers. The developers have been trying so hard to understand Maple’s fighting style, but they could never figure it out no matter what they do.
Maple’s game pet is a green tortoise named Syrup. Maple intentionally named her game pet, Syrup, to match her name. While it’s never explicitly stated, it is easy to deduce that Syrup is male. It became more obvious when Syrup consoled Chrome for being the only guy member of Maple Tree who didn’t have a wardrobe change during an event which Chrome found surprising.
Syrup’s skills revolve around nature. His skill Overgrowth binds the enemies to the ground while damaging them over time. Syrup’s ultimate skill is Spirit Cannon which absorbs energy and blasts it to a target. The damage from the Spirit Cannon is strong enough to one-hit mid-tier players and can inflict serious damage on boss mobs.
Syrup is very helpful in navigating floors, especially since Syrup can fly in all non-restricted areas on the map, except for limited fly-zones and no-fly zone maps. Technically, Syrup is not actually flying but floating using Maple’s Psychokinesis which makes things float by Maple’s will. This is especially true since Syrup doesn’t have the “Fly” skill, unlike the aerial type of pets.
In the second season of Bofuri, Sally and Maple were able to qualify to take the special quest to evolve Oboro and Syrup since Sally and Maple have been fighting with their pets longer than any player in the game. After completing the secret quest, Syrup evolved slightly bigger with some flowers around its body –almost looking like Bulbasaur in Pokemon.
Syrup’s evolution unlocked more skills that complement Maple’s newly acquired skills. Syrup’s presence makes Maple stronger and more deadly against her enemies.
Maple’s overpowered skills and charming personality have drawn the game’s attention. Many of which have become Maple’s rivals. However, there are only four players in the game that Maple recognizes as her rival.
The first rival that Maple ever had was Mii, the guild leader of the Kingdom of Flame Emperor guild. Mii became Maple’s rival during the first guild event in episode 10 of season 1, where Maple, Mei, and Yui came across Misery and Mark to take over their guild’s orb.
Mii was still unfamiliar with Maple when Mii had to face Maple to protect Misery and Mark. Unfortunately for Mii, Maple is too sturdy then even for her ultimate skill, which allows Mii to self-destruct to take down her enemy along with her. Mii felt frustrated since her self-destruct AOE (Attack on Area) did not affect Maple at all. Since then, she’s always been wary of Maple and always wanted a rematch against Maple.
Even though Mii see Maple as her rival, they still get along well and are secretly close friends within the game since Maple is one of the few who knows Mii’s secret.
Payne is proud of his skills as a guild master and a player. He was once dubbed as “the strongest player in the game” and one of the three strongest players among all players. Many see Payne as a “knight in shining armor” mainly because of his looks, strength, and character job as a Knight.
Payne’s guild, The Congregation of Holy Swords, is also one of the strongest guilds in the game, comparable to Mii’s guild. Unfortunately, Payne and his major guild members, Frederica, Drag, and Dread, were done in by Maple Tree (Maple’s guild) during the 1st major event of the game in Season 1 of the anime.
Since then, Payne has always wanted to improve himself to return to Maple and her guild the favor of losing. Unfortunately, it’s going to take some time before Payne can have his payback to Maple. Even so, Payne and Maple are good friends, and he is always invited to some gatherings in the Maple Tree guild base.
Velvet is the guild leader of an uprising guild named “Thunder Storm” and the newest rival of Maple.
Maple and Violet first met on the fifth floor of the game, where Maple was exploring the floor to find anything interesting when Maple heard a strong thunderous sound followed by a flash of light from a distance.
Maple went closer to see what was happening but only saw a blonde girl with a white blouse and long skirt with a purple gauntlet in hand while holding a parasol. Velvet tries to hide skills from Maple, so she makes excuses for what she is doing in such a secluded place above the clouds.
Velvet knew exactly who Maple was and expressed her desire to fight stronger opponents such as Maple. Velvet has always seen Maple as a rival that she needs to beet ever since Maple became famous in the game but never got the chance to fight Maple or even meet her.
Luckily for Velvet, she will have her chance to fight Maple and the Maple Tree in the third major event of the game, probably in season 3 of Bofuri.
Even though Sally is Maple’s best friend, there’s always been a secret rivalry between them—not only in the game but also in the real world. Their rivalry stems from the desire to help each other grow and push each other to become better.
Because of this, their secret rivalry has only benefited them both. They become closer and closer to each other as they understand each other’s strengths and weaknesses even better. There was never a chance for animosity to grow between the two best friends, even though they considered each as rivals.
In spite of that, many fans believe that Sally’s character build is designed to defeat Maple, even though they both said that Sally and Maple would cover each other’s weaknesses in the game. Even so, there is no chance to confirm this as of the moment since the opportunity for Maple and Sally to go against each other in a PvP (Player versus Player) has not arrived even in the light novel.
Article by John Salinas.
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