I have a long and complicated history with Final Fantasy XII. Despite owning the 2006 PS2 release for a good five years, I could never get into the game. I sat down and restarted it multiple times, leveling grinding harder, attempting to be more strategic, but each run ended with me reaching a certain plateau where I would just sigh and give up.
Part of this was admittedly due to my lack of skill. When I first tried to play the game back in 2012 I had only just become accustomed to JRPGs. But even without considering my ineptitude, I had a lot of problems with the game’s core design. The license board was an unwieldy upgrade system that left each of my character’s without any real focus in battle, the battle system could be slow and confusing, and in general I found it hard to get a grasp on the game’s mechanics. It was a game I wanted to appreciate as a fan of the franchise, but couldn’t.
So with that in mind, it may come as a surprise that I was immediately excited upon hearing the announcement of the Zodiac Age PS4 remaster. After all, with so many failed attempts to enjoy the game beforehand, you’d think I would have given up on it a long time ago. But really, the main selling point for me wasn’t the improved graphics or the fact that I had another chance to try out the game again, it was the Zodiac Job System. Continue reading
Originally I wasn’t going to even write an introduction for this new post series, but I figured I should explain what’s going on here. You see, I’ve been pretty annoyed in the past months because the other two review series I had going were incredibly difficult to maintain. Gonzo Hell would have involved me buying a majority of the shows I listed for coverage, and Journey through Gundam was much the same. So instead of continuing those, I decided that it would be better to review the anime and manga that I actually own.
And so here we are! In each of these Shelf Review posts, I’ll be covering a light novel, book, or anime series that I have personally bought. This will not only force me to use the things that I buy, but it also will hopefully make my review output on this site more consistent. Anyways, that’s been enough stalling; on with the review! Continue reading
If there were ever an anime that I didn’t think I would like from my selection of Gonzo shows, it probably would have been Romeo x Juliet. I mean just look at it. Anime adaptations of classic literature have always weirded me out, especially ones that incorporate fantasy or sci-fi elements (Which Romeo x Juliet has in spades). It just seems kind of like a fanfiction. The title certainly doesn’t help either. The “x” between the Romeo and Juliet reminds me of the days when my friends would ship school teachers and their classmates, and I shipped Johnlock while watching Sherlock on PBS Masterpiece… Those were dark times.
Strangely enough though, I enjoyed Romeo x Juliet. In spite of some glaring flaws, it consistently kept me watching with its strong heart. Romeo x Juliet feels like it was made by people who cared, or at least were interested in the source material. And considering what most other Gonzo shows are like (I’m looking at you Witchblade), I’m very pleased that this show feels like it had some thought and effort put into it. Continue reading
Once upon a time in the early and mid 2000’s, there existed an anime studio called Gonzo. It was a rather successful studio, releasing multiple shows per season, all usually getting licensed by Funimation or ADV Films. They were critically acclaimed for their animation (Most of the time), and a lot of fans anticipated their newest releases (For some reason). Still their reign did not last for long, for when the economy crashed in 2008 Gonzo was put into dire straits, gaining a reported deficit of 30 million dollars. Gonzo could not longer produce four shows in one season, they could longer produce manga adaptations at nauseum hoping for a big hit, and they could longer be a hot topic in anime. Eventually they merged with their parent company GDH in 2009, causing them to become completely inactive in 2010. They still exist, but they only release one show per year at most; with their newest release being a moe show about voice actors called Sore ga Seiyuu. Continue reading
Gundam. If you know anything about anime then you’ve probably heard about it at least once. Starting in 1979 with the influential Mobile Suit Gundam 0079, the Gundam Franchise has grown over the years into a massive omnipresent aspect of anime and mecha culture. Sure it’s had its ups and downs (I mean one of the only Gundam series to have gained any real traction recently is Gundam Build Fighters), but it helped spawn the Real Robot genre and has produced some really interesting shows throughout its long lifespan.
So I decided to check some of them out! That’s right, from today onward I’m going to be randomly posting reviews about random Gundam series and OVAs from the past and present. As such, I decided to start with one of today’s most acclaimed entries in the franchise, and one of the most recent ones to have made it over here to the states on DVD through Right Stuf’s collaboration with Sunrise. That’s right, I’m going to be talk about the crazy Tomino spectacle that is Turn A Gundam.
Turn A, Turn, Turn A, Turn, TURN AAAAAAAAA! Continue reading