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Posts Tagged ‘Society’

Just a post today to showcase a new wallpaper based on Puella Magi Madoka Magica; which has, much as expected, has continued to go from strength to strength and quite easily marks itself as the best anime of this season. It just continually surprises me each episode, and I think that we can forgive Kyubei’s lax grasp of thermodynamics since it provides good entertainment…

Anyway, enough nattering, here’s the goods:

As always, click the above to see it full sized.

After seeing the above set of images of each of the girls, cards immediately came to mind (at first, playing cards, but then tarot). So I merged them with appropriate borders and text; and assigned each girl a High Arcana of the Tarot that she matches. They then came naturally to the darkened ‘usual suspects’ type picture that forms the top end of the wallpaper. As for the girls Tarot association (some spoilers!):

II) Kyouko matches perfectly with a High Priestess; she has the clergy father background; the requirement to make difficult choices, and she matches the positive and negative connotations of this card in reading: (Wisdom/secrets tempered by love vs. passivity and conceit), especially as she initially despises the ideals of Sayaka and hunts witches in a passive way, not caring for the consequences.

VIII) Sayaka is definately Justice. Not only in her ideal; but also in her fate: by giving up her wish for another, she relegates herself to being the Justice, the outside observer of what she thought to protect. Her strengths and weaknesses match the cards meaning like Kyouko: (Strength of Will, Listening to Conscience and Sincerity vs. Prejudice, corruption and pride).

X) Homura is a literal Wheel of Fortune, given what has come to light in the latest episode. Her ability to roll everything back and start the cycle anew (and relive the worst moments of her life!) with her time manipulation is just what the Wheel is about. And again, the meaning matches quite well: (Transformation and accepting destiny vs. resignation and clinging to things and ideals).

XIV) Mami is Temperence. Her personality is mostly calmness tempered in hostility; with her casual devastation of witches and her continual misfortune with losing her head (both literally and figuratively!). Again, she matches decently: (Healing, Trust and Patience vs. Intolerance, Hostility, Incomprehension), especially as her wish is to be healed and she acts the mentor character.

XVII) And finally, Madoka herself is The Star. Despite the cheesy fact that she’s the star of the show; she is also the bouncy never say die type with a literal boundless source of energy. The star works well with others: (Hope, wisdom, profitable partnerships vs. Bad luck, dissappointment, and loss of friends).

Of course; I did also consider a Kyubei card (as the Devil), which he is in many, many aspects; but couldn’t think of how to integrate him into the general design.


Also, a quick late season anime summary:

It’s been an interesting season, I guess. Several things started well and have dropped in quality though.

Infinite Stratos is still entertaining, although Ichika’s IQ drops in every episode (I guess his harem is leeching it away?) and there have been some amusingly bad cock ups in the art quality. And plot, where is it? Still, as far as brainless harem mecha shows go, I’ve had worse.

Gosick continues to forget it is supposed to be a mystery show. To the point where the mysteries have become more and more idiotic and illogical every episode to the point where an omniscient being would have trouble figuring it out from the clues offered. But then, I guess Victorique’s power of moe trumps them all.

Dragon Crisis has sadly devolved into monster of the week/fortnight at the moment; always ending in stock footage and attaching St. Elmo’s fire to Ryuji’s dagger every time. Seeing Rose’s kawaii, and Misaki getting continual emotional torture is the main thing keeping it afloat. Still, at least Ryuji has evolved a little bit.

Korewa Zombie is very strange. It manages epic greatness and terrible fail in equal measure in each episode; almost to the extent of a masterful stroke; and I really don’t know how to take it… it confuses me greatly; but I guess I’m still watching it and that’s something.

As already noted, Madoka continually impresses me.

I need to catch up with Fractale and Merry still; since work is, as always, inhibiting my ability to marathon episodes.

And, yikes, theres another season coming on fast. I had better start preparing a preview; but this one is a daunting task; I’ve identified possibly as many as 21 shows meeting my usual criteria. Sheer lunacy.

Finally, of course, my condolences go out to anyone caught in the fearsome Earthquakes in Japan. They are apparently the 5th strongest ever recorded, which is saying alot. So please offer your minute of silence, as I have.

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And here’s the next set. Again, I’ll start with Mayoi Neko, and go onto Night Raid.

Mayoi Neko Overrun

Here’s yet another surprise for me this season. There was very little information originally on MayoiNeko, so I wasn’t really expecting anything from it, but it turned out to be better than I anticipated. Hardly world class, but worth a giggle or two. Anyway, as previously noted, our setting is a run down sweet shop called (bizarrely) Stray Cats. Takumi is a generic harem anime protagonist (TM) who also appears to be an orphan adopted by the Sister, Otome. He also has another childhood friend, Fumino, whom is textbook tsundere.

Interestingly though, Takumi actually seems to understand Fumino’s nature (as dishonest and double-sided) with an insight rarely exhibited by protagonists, so maybe he has some potential after all.

I assume she was going for a spine breaking wake up move, but it failed. Oh dear.


The middle guy is an Otaku at war with Fumino because he feels she’s too much of a cliche. I had to laugh at that.


Rich Loli with Ninja Maids and a cosplay fetish? Check.
As a hilarious side note, Chise (the Loli) has the voice actress of Index, and the maids serving her are Mikoto and Kuroko from the same series respectively.


One wonders whether the maids are begrudging servants when things like this happen, though… LOL…


Hey, it’s an anime about catgirls, so that makes perfect sense. Of course, in the real world, I’m sure Fumino would be straight-jacketed in short order. Oh, and the loose plot is that a young boy claims to have seen a huge (girl sized) cat that ate an important cake. Despite the fact that we eventually learn that the boy was fibbing, Fumino goes off to search. Fortunately, said cat-girl is actually discovered thieving a fish from the market.


The catgirl has some real serious agility powers to evade capture; and gets away, until the sister returns with…


Oh my gods! Its Patchiouli!

I laughed my ass off when I saw how close the character design was (somehow it didn’t click when I was doing the preview). Especially considering that there have been fanarts of Patchy with cat-ears. I also agree with the sisters sentiment since I’m fond of purple haired, red eyed combos.

Well, like I say, I wasn’t expecting anything, but the fact that this show doesn’t try to lampshade its identity and is rather tongue in cheek scores it alot of bonus points. The daft references help too. I’m not sure about our male lead at the moment, but he has some slight potential due to insight, domestic prowess, and not ~seeming~ to be too perverse. I guess we’ll see.


Senkou no Night Raid

Yet again, I was surprised by this one, and my early estimate had a bit of a crippling oversight. Namely, I thought they were going to play it straight without a fantasy element. I was wrong, since all of the protagonists have some kind of special power.

Because of this, it shares some more similarities with Bantorra besides its artsy style. Everything else about the preview was correct, however. It follows a special Japanese military spy operation in China. The first part follows a rescue operation of an important Japanese Businessman from a Chinese Paramilitary group whom have taken him hostage. However, there is a small conspiracy intertwined when it is discovered that said man is actually selling weapons to them for his own profit.


He hasn’t got a foot to stand on! (wow that’s a bad pun…) Ahem. Anyway, Aoi (right hand chap) seems to have some kind of time control. I suppose it could be telekinesis, but he’s continually going out about ‘running out of time’, so I’m thinking its an ability to mess with causality of certain objects (as in, actually, this bullet from this timeframe was going to hit over there, then I’ll speed to 14X your timeframe and slap you in the face etc.)


This is the guy whom is be rescued. He looked a bit dodgy to me as soon as I saw it.


There’s always time for bike stunts off the side of a bridge girder. LOL.


This shady chap seems to be in charge of the secret service. His shadow bodyguard also seems to remind me of Spike Spiegal, LOL.


They’re pretty advanced for their time period, this lot, with aerial photography and paratrooper assaults.


Natsume the uber sniper shows off his infinite zoom vision by picking off a carefully placed det-pack on a roof from about 3 miles away.


Kazura, meanwhile, has matter tranmogrification. In other words, he can Flash Move to a place he can see, and take people with him.

It’s hardly Allison & Lillia level conspiracy, but the first episode was a pretty fun ride overall. What is especially interesting was that they aren’t afraid to use a good chunk of Mandarin. Its a common anime failing to think everyone in the world speaks fluent Japanese, so its a nice change to see this decision.

Ah yeah, also, didn’t mention the girl operative, Yukina. She has telepathy, long distance mental communication and mind-melding, and really connects the whole team together.

Anyway, it was a pretty (if dark) first showing, and it whet my appetite, so I’m looking forward to this providing a nice action/thriller mixture.

That’s all for now. I think we’re pretty much done with initial previews. I still have to look at Daimaou and Hakuouki, but I’ll probably do those as well soon.

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And here’s the still rather delayed round 2, in which I’ll look briefly at Ookamikakushi and Sora no Woto.

Ookamikakushi

This was the show I believe I was most anticipating from the Winter/Spring 2010 lineup.

Ookamikakushi obviously has its claws in the mystery genre. Hiroshi, his author father and wheelchair-bound younger sister Kana have recently moved to a new town known for its age old religion involving a wolf deity and a special kind of citrus fruit (that resembles a mandarin, but apparently isn’t). Shortly after arriving, Hiroshi is instantly glomped by a hyper-energic girl called Isuzu.


Hmm, that’s a pretty obscene first greeting.


The little sister is not impressed.

Similarily, during his first school day as a new transfer student, he is FAR more popular (with guys & girls) than his fairly average personality and looks would suggest, apparently for no reason.

That is, except for one girl, Nemuru, whom it seems is well known for her less than social nature; and makes it quite clear that she despises his very existance. Despite this, her presence is highly commanding, and she manages to scare others away.


Nemuru does not do polite.


He was so buddy-buddy before, but now he’s terrified?

Whilst Hiroshi is walking around town with Isuzu, we also learn that this town is split into an old and new area. Apparently, some did not like the idea of expansion, and so moved to the old town,  the area across the river. These old town people hate new town people. We also learn that no shop is open after 7 and people are rarely on the streets after 8: the towns nightlife is apparently absent.

Finally, we see the guy who got strangely scared of Nemuru before being chased among alleyways. He is a werewolf (?) perhaps as he reacts to seeing the blood moon. But before anything happens, he is cut down by a masked white haired girl. With her mask off, she strongly resembles Nemuru gone albino. The next day, Hiroshi asks why that guys desk has gone. Nemuru curtly arrives and informs Hiroshi that he has moved town.


Apparently he’s also a lycanthrope? (not a very good one, mind you…)


As Albino-Nemuru cuts him in two with her stupidly large scythe.

Naturally, it seems almost a given that Nemuru is actually the wolf-goddess described in the legends; and it is possible that the construction of the new town has also come hand in hand with some kind of curse? We also see some slightly crazy Isuzu in the intro (that is…slightly more crazy than usual, so that is obvious forshadowing).

I’m not 100% sold on it with just the first episode, but I have got the second and third to digest yet, and I am noticeably interested.

Sora no Woto

This follows a girl called Kanata, whom, in her childhood (as a war orphan?),  saw a woman whom was a military herald. This apparently inspired her to join the army so that she could be taught to play an instrument.

When she arrives at her new assignment, the town is in preparation for a grand festival to celebrate fire maidens whom apparently doused themselves in water and continually embraced a vicious fire demon in order to protect the town. Since she is early, she wanders around town and gets herself doused in wine.

After this, another girl, Rio (whom we eventually learn is her superior and sempai) lets her use the bath and clean her uniform. During this time we notice that Kanata has really good hearing and discerns different tones really well, as demonstated in her listening to her sempai’s rining bell. Unfortunately, a thieving owl steals the bell. Kanata goes after it as she still has time before having to report in.

Eventually, she succeeds, but gets hopelessly lost in a nearby valley in the process. She decides to call for help by blowing her trumpet.

The older girl from before, Rio, is actually dressed up to be the fire maiden in festival, and hears Kanata blaring on her trumpet in the valley. Some of the people think this is surprisingly like another prophecy related to the festival.

Anyway, Kanata is rescued, waking up the next morning after passing out in the valley. Rio reprimands her but isn’t too mad since her bell was recovered in the process. We learn that the garrison is called the Time-Telling Fortress because it has a really nice view of the sunrise and it apparently their duty there to play various morning calls. Rio promises to teach Kanata how to be a good trumpeteer. Unfortunately, at the moment, she is total crap, as the townspeople laugh to themselves at her blaring from the fortess.

Could be interesting, this one. Has a relaxing pace and concept to it. I imagine Kanata will eventually become amazing, or something. Again, it’s not entirely caught my attention yet (depends on where they take it), but its got potential.

Thats all for now.

Ah yeah, I’ve decided after watching the next few Baka no Test episodes that I’m almost certainly not going to bother with it anymore. Lack of sense/plot, a rampant abundance of gratuitous homosexuality, and characters that are too cookie-cutter generic have made me facepalm one too many times, I think. The whole summoned creatures part actually seems surprisingly tacked on, which is a bit of a shame since I reckon it could have been the show’s saving grace if had been done well…

Next up will be Durarara! and Ladies vs. Butlers, when I get around to watching them. As you might imagine, crushing schedule and backlog do not a good update situation make. But stay tuned anyway, yeah?

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Yikes. I have to start with an apology for starting this stuff so late, but I’ve been doing an seemingly exhausting amount of work recently which has obviously had the means to drain away all of my time. Though it’s immensely belated (most shows are about to get to their 3rd episode by now!), its time for the usual evaluations of the anime this season. That said, I guess that there isn’t a huge amount to cover, so though I have alot to catch up,  I still imagine I’ll be able to do it in three or four posts (he says…yet again).

Anyway, I’ll start with Baka no Test and Dance in the Vampire Bund.

Baka no Test (aka. the Idiots, the Tests, and the Summoned Creatures)

The random prediction I made about this in the previews turned out correct: the chibi versions are indeed the summoned creatures (facepalm). Anyway, this is another one of those highly discriminating tiered school systems that manga and light novel writers seem to love the idea of. Special A of course being the other notable one, where the ultimate students get the ultimate facilities. Of course, that focuses on the top, this on the bottom. We hear about Yoshii, who is a complete idiot, so gets assigned to class F. We also hear about Himeji, the token lovely awesome girl who also happens to be sickly and in ultimate discrimation, she gets assigned to F because of her illness preventing her from taking the exam. I’m sure I’d smell a lawsuit there if this were based on the assumption of any other country.

Anyway, Class F naturally has cardboard coffee tables, smelly tatami floors and an unmotivated teacher. Where most schools try their dardest to give the ‘intellectually challenged’ extra special help to make up for their problems, this school does all it can to remind them of just how awful and idiotic they are.

Naturally, Class F immediately starts a revolution, which is apparently allowed in the school charter, by challenging Class E to a virtual reality summoned creature battle with the stakes being Class E’s classroom and facilities (which are at least slightly less drafty with hardwood desks). Basically, students summon a creature which has hitpoints equal to their current total exam score. If their creature gets KO’ed they have to immediately take remedial lessons to get their score up, and can also leave and take more exams to increase health and attack power.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem to go very well. Even though the battle goes evenly for a time (as it real idiots vs. slight idiots), the eventual difference in grades slowly becomes clear. Yoshii, the protagonist, has a slight secret weapon: he’s such an idiot he has to help teachers with chores so his chibi has the special ability to affect real-world objects. Unfortunately it also passes on its pain to its user, and in fact becomes totally useless.

So, of course, everyone in class F ends up relying on Himeji, who is of course a super genius only relegated to the class due to sickness. She completes 5 exams in the space of 30 minutes and pumps her creatures score up to 412, turning it into a greatsword wielding warrior girl chibi:

Which, of course, goes onto pwning all of class E simultaneously with a giant super-robot wars style FMV attack.

Which was apparently the class presidents plan all along. Strangely though, he forfeits the prize for some reason, and then a ludicrous challenge letter arrives for class F from… Class A? Oh dear…

Though the concept is fairly dumb, it is at least pretty. I imagine this will be one of the shows that will be fighting over my last couple of remaining slots rather than being guaranteed one. Nevertheless, its good chances as a backup show, especially on those days you want to watch mindless entertainment.

Dance in the Vampire Bund

Again, this one turned out fairly similar to my initial estimations in some respects: Vampires reveal themselves to the world because they buy a entire slice of Japan in order to form themselves a new country due to the efforts of Mina Tepes. However, I didn’t expect HOW they would do this: though the medium of TV show (within a TV show… whee go narrative framing).

It’s played straight, as they bring in various “experts” (ironically, the actual manga-ka guest star is THIS show’s original manga-ka) to determine the validity of vampires, whom of course throw out the concept.

Only to have the proof shoved in their face, first normally as Mina Tepes appears as a girl in the audience and evidence is provided from a recent murder scene.

Of course, still no 0ne take the bait when they they play it straight, so it comes down to the stupid actions the vain special guest star, an actor playing the vampire in a recent live action adaptation of a vampire manga, whom turns out to actually be one (ableit one with the true form of a ‘frog’ which is weird) and also the one resposible for the recent murders.

This idiot is promptly destroyed on live television by Mina, who promptly makes her announcement to the world.

Of course, they’ve turned the literary tradition on its head, not that I didn’t expect it. Since this Mina is apparently the descendant (?) of Vlad, rather than one of his wives as is the case in Dracula.

I have also actually watched the second and third episodes of this. Werewolves appear…and there’s a mighty amount of dubious loli fanservice provided by Mina herself (notably, the scene with the application of super suncream…OH DEAR).  The fact that all of this (the blood and the nudity) is also provided without censoring (fairly rare in an anime) suggests this is shown REALLY late at night. But hey, it makes a refreshing change.

I’m rather interested to see where they take this, so I’ll probably continue to follow this.

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Hey guys, I’m back with yet another artsy post today (you may have noticed that the Unsorted Page was updated again a few days back with all the updates of recent times).

As per usual with my sketching arm, it seems to be most inspired shortly after I’ve completed a spree with reading novels. In this case, I recently finished Brandon Sanderson’s The Final Empire, which I thought was most intreguing. And I decided to sketch the other important NPC from my long running 4th edition Dungeons and Dragons campaign: Zakura Fafnir, the so called ‘White Devil’ of Renais, heir to the trade union great house of Fafnir, and Dark Warlock superior. Check her out:

As always, click it to get a bigger version.

As you might guess, she is done in a very similar style to the similar sketch I did of Alicia Silverscale (whom is also in the party)

As explained in an age old post, my setting, Retoria, has no elves, but instead has a few non-traditional races of my own devising: Auricans, Drakahn and Necrists.

Zakura is an Aurican, which is a race of half-Human, half-Yinn (spirit) borne from a magical cataclysm that occured in the final days of the Spirit Wars. They appear human, but are slim like Eladrin and yet also tall like Drakahn. All Auricans have shock-white hair but their eyes can be practically any colour of the spectrum. Their other distinguishing features are their star-shaped pupils and pale white skin which glows luminescently in moonlight and the presence of high magic. You can READ the race article I created for the campaign HERE, if you like. It goes into more detail about the biology and stats.

She showed up in the campaign somewhat later than Alicia did. Shortly after returning from the Western isles of Golgotha, the party re-entered the service of Gordon Rosalind, and after some diplomatic process found themselves in charge of the re-development of the island of Hassan, which is a natural fortress (and which they had cleared a necromancer out of previously…literally blowing the top off of one of the castle towers in the process -_-;)

Of course, to prevent dissent, this reconstruction had to be approved by each of the three great Houses of the mercantile islands of Renais: Rosalind, Veruna and Fafnir. Naturally, Gordon Rosalind was not an issue (an early part of the campaign involved them rescuing his young daughter whom was going to be used as a sacrifice and then also basically becoming privateers for Rosalind in his employ).

Christopher Veruna also wasn’t too hard since they had already gained the trust of his lover, Liliana Lunlun LuGunther.

Souten Fafnir, however was a much tougher nut to crack. It was only through some expert diplomacy he even conceded. Then, Zakura, his daughter and heir, was sent to find issues with the project. Amazingly, however, she gained grudging respect for the party after the Fighter managed to out-intimidate her (!) and then she was defeated in one-on-one combat by the Swordmage.

After this, she decided it would be amusing to follow the party, much to their chagrim. However, since she is perpetually surrounded by reverent flunkies and minions, at least they didn’t need any new crew for the ship for awhile. LOL. She seems to continually be chasing the Fighter of the party and either beating the crap out of him or showering him in arcane worms ever since the incident when he walked in on her in the hotsprings (LOL). She also seems to have a strange friend/foe/rival/enemy relationship with Alicia. Nevertheless, she also became rather useful when the party needed to get into Hell, being a Warlock and knowledgable about such things.

Her manner is haughty, arrogant and ill-tolerant of idiots; but quite willing and able to use all the tools at her disposal to achieve maximum impact in her own agenda. That obviously includes her natural beauty~ the 40 odd minions she has that get used as basically cannon fodder and footstools obviously have some reason for being that way, eh?

I guess it should also be noted that Warlocks of all varieties in my setting gain a ‘Fzvir’ (pronounced Veer), which is a large tattoo along their right arm as an expression of their contract (usually with an angel of a certain deity~ Infernal Contracts with Saulm, Star with Kinah, Fey with Corticarte and Dark contracts with Dahlia). It seems to be a pseudo-living thing, which writhes, snake-like, along the skin, when a Warlock casts a spell.

And, to match Alicia, I also made Zakura into a Wallpaper version:

Just in case you want an Arousing Aurican for you desktop (makes a set with the Desirable Drakahn, LOL).


In other news, this article on the Wall Street Journal paints an interesting picture of how the Anime Industry has also been feeling the smackdown from the current recession, with an 18% drop in the industry sales between 2006 and 2008. Most anime veterans like myself are aware of the fact that being a key frame animator for an animation studio is like slave labour (I certainly wouldn’t want to do it…its like 45 hours a week for £9,000 a year [thats, what… $12,000 for you Americans?]), but by the sounds of it, things are getting worse in the current climate thanks to wonders of outsourcing. Nevertheless, I don’t really agree with this articles opinion that Anime is going more dark and brutal. If anything, Naughties Anime has been MORE bright and cheerful than Nineties Anime on the whole.

Anyways, thats all for today. Stay tuned.

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Guh, its been a little while, huh?

I’ve been pretty shockingly busy as of late, working on menageries of projects. And, uh, most of my spare time of late has been consumed, one way or another, leaving this blog a bit in the lurch, I guess. For this I apologise.

On the other hand, I’m back with another Visual Novel Diary. This time, I finally got around to playing Da Capo, which is translated by Mangagamer (professionally this time, rather than a fan translation…though I have to wonder, since both Da Capo and Shuffle were getting Fan Translations that suddenly dissappeared and then re-appeared in the catalogue of these people. Methinks the translators were bought out, in these cases. Not that I can especially blame them, since fansubbing is a thankless job most of the time.)

Anyway, Da Capo is franchise than shot Circus into the limelight as creator of visual novels. Since its rather popular release, its had a huge host of cash-in’s, sequels, extra chapters, and gaidens; not to mention having anime’s made of its various parts.

Unfortunately, the anime was a bit of bust. Merely because Nemu was picked as the girl of choice, when basically EVERY other choice is superior, at least in the eyes of most people I’ve spoken with. They then performed extra travesties by literally torturing Kotori fans in Da Capo Second Season (this made me stop following any subsequent series of the anime).

That said, apparently the Japanese fans love Nemu. They’re all sis-cons, perhaps? I really don’t usually see the appeal of the subservient sister like character, but nearly all visual novels have one lurking around somewhere.

As you may have possibly guessed, I immediately went straight for Kotori.

Dacapo1

Wah, she’s surprisingly forward, eh?
DaCapo3
Cuteness. It is only cuteness.

The game itself is actually pretty good in terms of originality for dating sims. Rather than presenting the usual obligatory two choice box, Da Capo offers its branches in a different way. For starters, every evening, you have to set your Alarm Clock to one of three times (6:30, 7:00 or 7:50) which gives you different things on your way to school. After that, during lunchtime, you select where you want to eat from a map (with choices like Roof, Courtyard, Classroom, Cafeteria, etc.). Then, after school (and on sundays), you can use a different map to visit somewhere on the island (with selections like the Cherry Blossom Park, the Town, and the School etc.)

Of course, certain girls tend to frequent certain locations more often, so its not a complete bust trying to get their flags (though you might miss an event or two). Kotori, for example, appreciates you being on time and is most often seen in the Courtyard and variably behind the giant Sakura tree and the commercial district. Whereas, grabbing, say, Moe-sempai requires you to continually be late in the mornings and hang around school an awful lot.

Eventually, of course, if all flags are triggered, you stop getting mao choices and actually enter a girls route and the rest of the story follows your romance with the selected lady, where more typical choices tend to happen instead. Anyway, have some more Kotori’s:

Dacapo4

Of course, considering a certain plot point, it is important not to lie or think too many ecchi things about Kotori chan. Be a nice guy, yeah?

Also, it seems that yellow pyjamas are popular in this game. Not that I’m complaining.

Dacapo6

Yes, the new uniform is fabulous, dear.

Dacapo7

Feed me Kotori! Even her pouting is cute.

Anyways, after making Kotori mai waifu, I proceeded to eventually do Moe-sempai’s route as well. Which leads to some amusing lines like this:

Dacapo8

Ehahaha! Sure thing!

Dacapo9

Yikes, thats…shocking… I mean, I know I saved you and all…but…wowzers…

Anyhow, it was light and enjoyable. Far better than the anime (though for biased reasons). I’ll probably get around to eventually clearing Sakura as well, but for now, thats all I’ve done due to being busy. See ya again soon, eh?

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I had a slight delay in watching these, and only got around to watching them today.

First up, the new CLAMP series.

Kobato

This turned out both similar and completely apart from what I originally expected, actually. In actual fact, the first episode has her passing tests to obtain the bottle to store the scarred hearts for the beginning of her quest. And yes, Kobato herself is ridiculously (almost sickeningly) innocent, matching her character design. She crosses into the naive, in fact. The key here, however, is that Ioryogi states that ‘this is the human world’ at the start, implying that she herself is not human, despite her looks. The immediate thought is something fairy like since she doesn’t immediately strike one as being imposing enough to be angelic. Ghost is also a possibility, I’d imagine.

Anyhow, her misadventures in this episode include intrepreting that parks are for tramps (not playing), opening a bag of trash for the crows to swarm her, not realising that she’s being hit on by jocks and accepting their offer to go with them (fortunately saved by Ioryogi’s flamethrower and intervention of her future crush), throwing a ball with a curved trajectory that somehow spins 270 degrees and destroys a noodle stand, making a cursed natto with chocolate, milk and other travesties (but somehow, it works, through some miraculous luck), then finally showing off her only good trait: her beautiful singing voice, which brings an audience to her, starts up musical accompaniment, and sends a crying baby to sleep.

Well, despite being a klutz, a twit and disturbingly cute, I’d imagine she’s the kind of character everyone either loves (those who love cute things) or hates (those who bleed from the ears at cute things). I think my earlier assumption of Tohru Honda mk. II isn’t far off the mark, in fact. Heck, this is going to be a show about helping people and suchlike, so yeah, its closer and closer.

Anyway, caps:
kobato2
To me, the real star of the show is Ioryogi, though. I mean, who doesn’t want a cynical bastard blue dog plush that has the ability to shoot flames from its mouth?

kobato3
Gosh, its another girl who used Intelligence as her dumpstat.

kobato1-natto
Chocolate and fermented soybean cheese? Sure, why not?

Kobato4
GAAAHHHH! Its SOOO Moe, I’m gonna die.

kobato5
And so, the real mission begins.


Book of Bantorra

This took a rather bizarre and unexpected turn from what I previously thought. The main guy is indeed assigned to kill the worlds most powerful librarian, as initially thought. However, what was unexpected is that he himself is the weapon. He is also possessed by the spirit of an ancient Witch (who claims to love him) after touching a fragment from her book. See, a big part of the Evil Organisation TM’ s thing in this series seems to be the creation of human bombs, which they lovingly refer to as Meat. Standing against them is an organisation of armed librarians, whom are strong and powerful protectors of humanity. These librarians are respected because, in this setting, a person turns into a (stone?) book when they die, and are shelved in Bantorra.

Nevertheless, despite my initial enthusiasm for this series, I’m actually a little wary about it at the moment, since the first episode somehow felt disjointed to me, as if they were trying to cover too much ground at once, and I’m a little confused about what the hell is actually going on, something which doesn’t enamour me to shows. Nevertheless, its still got some time to clear up its act, but if I’m still confused down or shouting ‘wtf?’ too often (a bit like Asura Cryin) by like episode 3, then I’ll probably drop it.

Some caps:
Bantorra1
I thought this set the tone for the importance of the books quite nicely, though, if Mr. Vanity here is that obsessed.

Bantorra2
As I say, the books seem to be made of stone, which is kinda odd, though I guess they’d be eternally lasting, unlike paper books.

Bantorra3
British library special forces, anyone? (since St. Georges cross is in the background!)

Bantorra4
He’s actually standing on his floating chakrams here, by the way.

Anyway, more soon. See ya then.

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