God Scale, Marine General Scale, Mariner Scale
The Scales (スケイル) are the armors worn by Poseidon’s warriors, the Marinas (マリーナ). They appear in the anime-only Asgard chapter and the Poseidon arc.
During the Time of the Gods, Athena and Poseidon clashed many times for hegemony over Attica, the Greek peninsula projecting into the Aegean Sea on which Athens was built. Following the disappearance of Zeus, the Sea God started preparing for a much broader invasion, intent on wrestling from Athena’s hands the land the King of Gods had entrusted to her. The Scales were created in anticipation of the war to come. It is unclear if Poseidon himself crafted the armors, although some of the marine beings and creatures they are based on were born of the Sea God. Their superiority on the battlefield was such that Athena was forced to order the creation of special armors for her own warriors. The Cloths were born to counteract the devastating powers of Poseidon’s Scales.
The Scales contain Orichalcum (オリハルコン), a metal known in Antiquity as “mountain copper”. In the Saint Seiya universe, it is considered the strongest metal on earth and is labeled “hypermetal” in the Gigantomachia novels. It is most likely what gives the Sea Generals’ and Poseidon’s Scales their golden orange hue. It is unknown if Orichalcum is the only component or if it is part of an alloy, but the difference in defensive abilities among the armors would seem to indicate that stronger Scales contain more of it. There is no information regarding the potential ability of the Scales to either heal or evolve and no indication that they may even be alive. They appear devoid of Pandora boxes as they were simply store in object form in Poseidon’s Temple. Nevertheless, there is no doubt they saw more than their share of combat, suffering damage during Poseidon’s defeats at the hands of the Saints. Yet when Kanon discovered them in Poseidon’s Temple, the Scales were in perfect condition. They can therefore at the very least be repaired. Unlike Athena, it appears Poseidon did not place a ban on weapons and the Chrysaor Scale comes equipped with a lance. The Scales are divided into three groups, with properties and coverage matching the fighting level of their bearers.
Main Scale Ranks
Poseidon’s common soldiers are equipped with Scales and receive the title of Marina. Dark green and adorned with a scale-like motif, the armors offer relatively minor coverage and protection. There appears to be no design or function variations among them. The soldiers themselves are listed in the Taizen as equal in power to an average Bronze Saint.
So far, there has only been one example of warrior in this cast: Mermaid Thetis in the Classic series. We still ignore how many Marina Scales exist or if they are all equal in power and properties. The Mermaid armor, based on the mythological being of the same name, has a unique garnet and buff color scheme, a stark contrast to the golden orange of the Sea Generals’, but it is impossible to tell if this is a particularity of Thetis’ Scale or if the same applies to all Marina armors. It offers coverage on par with a Silver Cloth and Thetis’ fight with Shaina would seem to indicate that their armors were well matched in terms of protection.
Sea General Scale
The Sea Generals, Poseidon’s Elite and the Guardians of seven Pillars supporting the world’s seas and oceans, each have their own Scale. Their designs are based on various marine beings and creatures. In absolute, they are said to be on par with the Gold Cloths. Poseidon’s unscheduled awakening in the current era may have caused a unusual lack of resistance (see Notes & Trivia), but in the Lost Canvas, Unity’s Sea Dragon Scale sustained the attacks of Aquarius Dégel relatively well. They provide generous coverage and appear to be equal across the board in terms of defensive abilities, all capable of handling techniques at light speed.
The Sea God possesses his own Scale, which was worn by Julian Solo, his avatar in the Classic series, and Seraphina, the receptacle of his power in the Lost Canvas. In the current era, the armor was stored in Poseidon’s submarine Temple in the Mediterranean while his legendary Trident laid under one of Athena’s Seals in the prison below Cape Sounion. The Scale is a golden orange, a likely indicator of the presence of Orichalcum. Its design is rather sober, more martial than ceremonial, with coverage similar to that of a Sea General Scale. Its resistance though was far superior, and it took the arrow of the Sagittarius Gold Cloth imbued with the cosmos of four Bronze Saints to pierce its headpiece. Apart from that it came out of the final confrontation with little more than a few tears in the cape.
Notes & Trivia
- The Taizen, the Saint Seiya Encyclopedia, indicates that Poseidon’s early awakening prevented him from accessing his full powers. Apparently, this impacted the Scales as well, which might explain why they suffered such extensive damage when they are supposed to be on a level comparable to the Gold Cloths.
- Both the Hypermyth and the Taizen also propose an interesting theory on the possible link between the Scales and the birth of some of the many legends associated with the sea. As the Scales were created during the Age of the Gods, it is possible that people of the time witnessed some of the otherworldly powers of the Sea Generals and Marinas. The stories of those extraordinary feats and the creatures associated with them were passed down from one generation to the next, giving rise to the myths we know today. If that is the case, then it is for example possible that the Kraken of legends, who sunk the ships of criminals, wasn’t a marine monster at all but rather Poseidon’s Sea General, acting in the service of his God.
- It is interesting to note that although the Mermaid Scale has a mask in its object form, Thetis does not wear it. Again, it is impossible to say if this is an exception or the rule among Poseidon’s female warriors.
- Kurumada had at first intended the Scales of the Sea Generals to be blue, but discarded the idea because they did not look powerful enough. His first designs also used quite a lot of fish scale-like details, which are still evident on the guards’ Scales but were removed from the Sea Generals and the Marinas final models.
Marine General Scales: