Tag Archives: Works

Otaku Review: Fate/ Stay Unlimited Blade Works

Fate/ Stay Night Unlimited Blade Works

I am the bone of my sword
Steel is my body and fire is my blood
I have created over a thousand blades
Unknown to Death, Nor known to Life
Have withstood pain to create many weapons
Yet, those hands will never hold anything
So as I pray, unlimited blade works.

One of my all time favorite anime series. It got plot, characters and is beautifully animated. The anime is an adaptation of a visual novel with unlock-able sex scenes. Unfortunately I can’t stand the insane walls of boring text and repeating names. This is a thing that makes a good anime adaption a gods end. The Fate universe is a complex one with a ton of plot lines and spin-offs. Infinite blade works is the second adaptation, which focus on a different plot line and point of view than Fate/ Stay night. Ultimately it’s the same characters only being used differently. To be honest the naming convention is way to convoluted and confusing. Generally it’s easier to just refer to it all as the Nasuverse. Naturally some die hard fans will disagree with me, proclaiming that the visual novels are superior. If you can get hold of a good translation that is.

Unlimited blade works, follows the path of the sorceress Rin and her summoned servant known as archer. Which both partake in a conflict know as the holy grail war. Where several stuck up and questionable mage families compete for the ultimate price. Which will grant the winner his ultimate wish. Naturally the families participating does their best to summon the strongest and most vicious heroic spirits possible. Essentially when well known heroes of legends die, they will become a part of the Holy grail. Waiting to be summoned by whomever participates in the Grail war.

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The story mainly focuses on Rin whom is a young magician, whose father groomed into becoming a part of the grail war. She is quite skilled and very headstrong, with a soft and sensible side as well. Every now and then she also cracks a joke. This alone makes her leagues above the cookie cutter stereotypes most series cram down our throats these days.
Meanwhile her servant Archer is quite fantastic as well and actually look like a seasoned and buff warrior. With a snarky attitude and an infinite amount of swords to throw around.
Lastly there is Saber; A blond knight, that is so serious that and no nonsense as you can get her and yet have a somewhat compelling personality.

Lastly there is Shirou, whom starts off as interesting as a wash cloth with a traumatic past. Whom eventually he becomes more than a pushover handy man. The kind that has to be stabbed a lot, before he learns his lesson. Which happens a lot, as most of the players in the grail war does not play around much; Nor do they play fair. Even if the characters are fleshed out and very interesting. They still have the nasty habit of beating everyone over the head with a blunt encyclopedia of exposition. Followed by long periods of little action and some shocking plot twists.

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The music score is fairly decent and the voice actors does a splendid job for the most part. Can’t say much about the dubbing. I have no good reason to watch the English version at all. Meanwhile the art style is quite moody with a gradient filter to all. It even makes the odd facial structure of the characters looks good. The backgrounds are not much to write home about. Since it takes place in Japan, there is the generic school, temples and a lot of streets with no names. The animation quality is very good despite many slow and moody moments.

Unlimited Blade Works comes highly recommended and  is quite addictive, leaving the viewer either frustrated, or just craving more.

Njål H Sand

Haven Review: Guilty Gear XX Accent Core Plus R

yho

A little late then never, we got our hands on Guilty Gear XX Accent Core Plus R on Steam and it’s time to give it our review.

Now right from the start the opening cutscene seems really well done, showing off yet again the characters you expect to see in the Guilty Gear franchise; from Sol Badguy to Ky, and Bridget as well the notorious transvestite that has had many a young boy questioning their sexuality. Nah, I’m kidding, but when they reveal Bridget as a guy it does get pretty hilarious.Guilty-Gear-XX-Accent-Core-Plus-R-not-work Now once we get to the menu I’m slightly confused, as I have music blaring into my headset and it’s really hard to navigate and focus with it. But at long last I found the options menu, only to discover the sound is not there for whatever reason. I noticed afterwards that the sound is a completely separate option, and lowered the sound. It seems ridiculous though, not to have all the options in one spot.

You would think that with a port they would do a little more fine-tuning and make sure it’s all good, but they couldn’t be bothered with that. So after that, we move into the training mode where we just get a feel for the controls. Just like all the previous Guilty Gear titles, there is nothing wrong with them. The game controls fine and it’s very responsive. In fact I’d go as far as to say it responds better than the previous titles did, and was really easy to pick up.GG1-620x

So we break into Story Mode playing as my favorite character, Ky (mainly because of his notable blue and white outfit that is the reverse of my own coat). Loading up with Ky I get a feel for the story and its general setup is a bit disappointing. They just move the characters’ faces over the top of the screen so signify who is talking, before going to the combat. The most ridiculous part about the entire thing is that there is a robotic Ky now who begins to shout almost religiously that data is the only truth of the universe. GG3-620xBut the robotics Ky designs is literally one of the worst things I have ever seen in general for anime-styled character, as well as it using the trope that because it was based off the original and it’s a robot it must be superior.

Conclusion: though the game is pretty solid for a fighting-style title, it ultimately lacks the appeal of a promising story. It also suffers from poor menu management. Other than that, it remains solid overall.

-Daniel Clatworthy-
XXAccent

 

Haven Review: Guilty Gear Xrd -SIGN-

20140822083031!GGXrd_Logo Guilty Gear: it’s gone through many changes over the years with iterations on how its been presented to us.
But just as consoles lacked the capabilities to play things which later get remixed and remastered, it goes to say the same for Guilty Gear.

Screen-Shot-2014-12-26-at-1.54.19-AMNow Guilty Gear Xrd -Sign- is possibly the best version of the game to date with its own unique story, but with the same great characters you have been playing since day one. This game has kept true to its roots by fully embracing its design and game play, and removing unnecessary clutter.

I start first with the menu. It’s all clean, very well organized and easy to navigate. But in previous Guilty Gear titles they kept things a jumbled mess, even after it was ported and remastered. The mechanics of the game are also straightforward and easy to learn, as with some of the previous titles. But where the game stands out the most is in its visuals.guilty-gear-xrd-sign-08-23-14-1 The game is now using animated cut-scenes and diving more into the characters’ stories in a way they haven’t attempted before, and giving more depth to these characters.

The combat itself has gotten a rework using animation instead of its traditional pixel look, which it stuck to religiously for a while (apart from, Overture but we don’t want to talk about that game anymore…it only depresses me). The music also is astounding, much like you would expect in a really popular anime or hell, even a movie.
The game really begins to shine in every way it can now, as if it is evolving to meet rival competition from Capcom with their Street Fighter series. However the only real thing I question is simply some of its character designs and their weapon choices. GuiltyGearXrdSign_SS04As you will see in our linked video, you have a character who is literally attacking and damaging Sol Badguy; you know, the man who is possibly the biggest badass in all of the Guilty Gear series, with a freaking bouquet of flowers.

Hell, one of the character’s moves is literally just dropping a rose onto the ground that can do damage. So I am guessing not all things put into this game were thought through all the way. But considering that’s really the only true issue I have…besides the trope with almost all Guilty Gear titles on Steam giving me an achievement the moment I load up the game…it’s pretty insignificant.GuiltyGear-20 Honestly I am really impressed with just how far the franchise has gotten and just what they have done to it in the last few years. I really hope those who love the franchise and fighting games in general pick up a copy.

It really is very well done and I loved every aspect of it: its music, its design, its cut-scenes. It’s all flawless to me.

-Daniel Clatworthy-

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