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  • Fate Stay Night Unlimited Blade Works (Anime) Review

    Fate Stay Night Unlimited Blade Works Anime Review

     

    It is extremely hard to review and critique an anime that is as truly brilliant and this one was, but I’m going to try it anyway. Fate Stay Night: Unlimited Blade Works is without question one of the best anime of its generation. It is produced to near perfection in almost every way.

     

    Sometimes it can be easy to get bogged down in thinking that a good story has to be overly complex, or that it has to take lots of twists and turns. For FSN however this is not the case. While the story isn’t anything groundbreaking, it is good enough to keep you drawn in, and feels more like the journey is more important than the destination. It is simple, yet punchy and feels like it has weight.

    Despite me calling the plot simple (which again doesn’t mean bad), it never fails to feel like it’s actually moving forward. There is always something happening and no episode made you feel like nothing worthwhile had transpired. The story is mainly driven forward by its characters, with their differing morals and attitudes creating conflict.

     

    Characters of Fate/Stay Night

    The characters in FSN are superb. They all feel unique, with their own goals and motivations. This is helped by the fact that the cast is smaller than that of Fate Zero, so the more important cast members receive more screen time than they would have done. This extra screen time really feels like it allows the characters change and develop a lot more as people over the course of the show.

    Shiro Emiya, the main character, grows from a frankly feeble and useless mage to a proficient fighter with the help of the more adept mage Rin Tohsaka, who serves as the love interest. It is interesting to see how, even though they clearly care for each other, their motivations conflict with Rin believing it is most important to look after yourself first, and Shiro believing he should always put other people before himself.

    Gilgamesh acts as the main villain for much of the show, and he is as annoying as he was back in Fate Zero, and does a really good job of making you hate him. This version of FSN, as opposed to the 2006 edition, is principally about the struggle between Shiro and Archer however, and without giving too much away, it’s really “wow”.

     

    I’m hard pushed to think of an anime that consistently looks as amazing as this one does. The character designs all look stunning, and the animation (especially during the fight scene) look fluid and are a joy to watch.

    The sound in this anime is second to none also. The music always compliments and fits the mood of the scene when it is used, and also the intro music is excellent and really gets you pumped.

     

    So the verdict: Fate Stay Night Unlimited Blade Works is an exemplary work of art that both fans of the series and newcomers alike will love. For me it is the standout series of late 2014 and early 2015, and I give it 9/10.

    Episodes: 25

    Running Date: 4th October 2014 – 27th June 2015

    Studio: Aniplex, Notes, Ufotable

    Score: 9/10

    Verdict: Must Watch


  • Fate/Stay Night 2014 (Anime) Review

    Fate/Stay Night 2014 Anime Review

    Fate/Stay Night 2014

    The city of Fuyuki, the bloody stage where hideous tragedies were consumed, engulfed in an apocalyptic fire as a result of the events surrounding the 4th Grail War. In a modern Japan where all that is left of magic is but a synthetic imitation, the greatest families of magi organized this deadly dance of death in a desperate attempt to see one’s own selfish desires come true. Something that could not be expected happened: The infamous battle royale was back after 10 more years. In this night of fate, seven magi will be chosen by the Grail as the pages of forgotten legends and heroes come to life. Fantasy and reality become one in the same. We’ll follow Emiya Shirou in his steep journey to obtain what his father could not achieve, dragged into this new world of violence and mystery…

    What follows is my epic review of Fate/Stay Night Unlimited Blade Works 2014 Part 1, modern fantasy show that adapts the arc from the visual novel with the same name (Fate/Zero being the prequel). The anime’s first core contains 13 episode, episode 0, 1 and 12 last roughly 47 minutes. The analysis will follow Animation, Characters, Sound, Story and Personal Enjoyment

    Art and Animation of Fate/Stay Night 2014

    Score 10/10

    Fate/Stay Night 2014

    This is Studio Ufotable we’re talking about so there is nothing too surprising, the animation is literally revolutionary, setting a new standard in the industry. A show that was nicknamed Unlimited Budget Works and there is a reason for that, trust me. The fluidity of movement and the sense of speed surpasses anything I have watched so far, even their previous work Fate/Zero is notably inferior to the animated jewel that is this great show. The main focus are surely the majestically animated battles, shadows, clashing weapons and high speed blows (which are rendered perfectly). This sets an unprecedented way to express dynamism and fast paced action. The art is amazing and highly attractive, surpassing the amazing production values of Fate/Zero. At times there are some graphical imperfection but nothing that a bluray edition will not perfect

    Characters of Fate/Stay Night 2014

    Score 9/10

    Fate/Stay Night 2014

    What!? A bunch of children that still go to high school? At least in Zero it was a true war with all cool adults. Yes yes ok, as if age defined the degree of maturity and likeability of a person. I don’t deny how the characters respect certain stereotypical archetypes, even more than Zero, but this doesn’t make them any less interesting. This is the original characterization the prequel borrowed much from, all those interesting and relatable characters we all cheer or hate. What sets this apart from the prequel is how most of the characters are designed to not do the mistakes the adult counterparts did in the prequel.
    We have extremely likeable characters that we grow deeply fond of (yes even Shinji). Their young age means nothing as they mostly prove to have a degree of maturity and sense of responsibility that even exceeds most of the shows about “adults”. Every character is excellently characterized, they all have their own charm and a very deep ideological and psychological profile, the sense of duality and clashing personalities that you perceive is highly satisfying. Rivalry, love, friendship, the relationships between characters reach the near faultlessness.

    Soundtrack and Acting  of Fate/Stay Night 2014

    Score 9/10

    Fate/Stay Night 2014

    Unlike many shows, it is important to analyze the whole sound in all the aspects and circumstances they are used. The original soundtrack for the 2006 anime and UBW Movie was composed by the timeless master Kenji Kawai (currently my favorite composer in Fate) and the ost for Fate/Zero is composed by the immensely popular Yuki Kajiura. How does the soundtrack compare to these two? It’s still early to judge effectively since the best of the ost is yet to come. The ost generally works amazingly although its composer lacks the experience of the other two I mentioned. It’s then true how the ost may lack those catchy or iconic tunes but this is a mere beginning. What is the acting like? Do not wait for the dub I order you to watch it in sub, cause there is nothing that is even comparable to the Japanese dubs of fate in all its incarnation. This is a show that features a new concept of speed in battles, the sounds that accompany those extremely quick movements, dodges, sprints, explosions and blows are actually a relevant point to the whole thing, I never have heard such excellent sound effects in an anime.

    Storyline and Pacing  of Fate/Stay Night 2014

    Score 9/10

    Fate/Stay Night 2014

    Fate is all about its intriguing fantasy setting and how all plot elements get interwined to create a winning mix of epicness and character interactions. While it’s true that unlike the prequel this series offers an overall less dark and hopeless feeling, what Night does is deeply improve the pacing of the battles that blow Fate/Zero and most other shows out of the water. This series offers a serious and intelligent sphere of elements, it’s just far more natural and climatic compared to the prequel. Drama and slice of life, action and plot twists, they have an incredible sinergy and improve all problems in previous adaptations by far. I grew to feel more for the characters as their background and story is not so far fetched to make it look realistic. While it may be true that those slice of life elements partly break the amazing vibe the show creates, they offer vital characterization to all characters. You can’t do without this, just like plot expositions. I cannot deny how everything is so pleasantly covered with a veil of mystery. Many things are so subtle and foreshadowed, only partly revealed at times, setting our minds in motion making theories and connections. Everything ultimately serves as a means by which everyone can come up with his/her own original interpretations, their perception of characters and themes

    Personal Enjoyment of Fate/Stay Night 2014

    Score 10/10

    Fate/Stay Night 2014

    And this is the end of our review at last, my last considerations will all be given here. This is a series with a very unlucky story in the western world, as the previous adaptations of Night are all misunderstood and hated in favor of the far more popular younger brother Fate/Zero. I do not surely deny its prequel’s validity as a show but this is where everything started, and where all did end at last. Fate/Stay Night is a series that requires devotion to get into, an enormous universe you can get lost into and can give you satisfactions. I overall grew more attached to this than Zero, whether it is actually better or not. Insane battles, excellent exposition and interactions and lovably iconic characters. My boy Archer and my girl Rin are one of my favorite duo in history. Everything is overall epic. Knowing the original material and the way this part 1 was adapted, I highly doubt my Part 2 review will be that different. It will be even more awesome, that’s it.
    Overall Score 9.2/10

    – Humble Reaper from Anime Amino, Italy (Sicily)