Espa Roba, known as Esper Roba in the Japanese version, is a Duelist who claims to have ESP. In reality he is a fraud who uses his younger brothers to spy on and reply back to him the cards in his opponent's hand, thus allowing him to 'predict' the opponent's strategies almost before they perform them.
Voice and mannerisms
In the Singaporean English dub of the anime, Espa Roba has a Spanish accent.
Espa made his first appearance in a brief non speaking role in the town square, when Mai Valentine was pointing out the Battle City participants to Yugi Muto and Téa Gardner and what their deck and strategies were. She said he dueled using psychic powers.
Espa was a young Duelist who entered Battle City to uphold his reputation and protect his younger brothers. He was first shown defeating Rex Raptor and taking "Serpent Night Dragon". Rex advised Joey Wheeler not to Duel Espa on the grounds that his psychic abilities allowed him to read all the cards in his hand. With an air of self-confidence (and being skeptical of his supposed powers as he’d already experienced this with Mai Valentine), Joey accepted the Duel.
Although Espa initially gained an advantage due to the fact he knew what cards were in Joey's hand and on his field, Joey inferred what was happening and attempted to confuse his watchers from above by putting the cards "Skull Dice" and "Graceful Dice" close to each other.
Mokuba Kaiba eventually discovered the source of Espa's "psychic" abilities; his brothers spied upon Joey's hand from upon a high rise building. However, the brothers pleaded with Mokuba to let Espa continue with the Duel, stating that he was a strong Duelist despite his cheating ways.
The psychic front was to build an impression of an unbeatable Duelist and thus deflected any abuse that was usually heaped upon Espa and his brothers, they were heavily bullied due to being carnival folk in the past. To Mokuba, this situation paralleled his brotherly relationship with his older brother, Seto and he let Espa continue the Duel, only on the grounds that he stop cheating. Due to this, Espa's psychic reputation was tarnished, but he continued his Duel with Joey nevertheless.
Due to the Battle City regulations, Espa forfeited his rarest card, "Jinzo", to Joey upon his defeat and commented that he was ready to stand up for his brothers without cheating. He also promised to duel Joey again someday, but in a fair duel with no cheating.
He was later seen observing the semifinal match between Yugi and Kaiba in Domino City amongst other Duelists.
Espa made a cameo in the Japanese epilogue, appearing to challenge Mako Tsunami to a Duel.
Espa Roba plays a Psychic Power Deck, relying on Machine-Type monsters and Magic and Trap cards that allow him to manipulate enemy monsters. His key card is "Jinzo", which he strengthens with "Amplifier". Although he won “Serpent Night Dragon” off of Rex, but he did not included it in his Deck.
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