A review of Children of the Sea, how anime depicts athletes, and the promise of Black Myth: Wukong

A review of a unique anime

I have been meaning to review the anime movie Children of the Sea, however, I just returned to school (digitally), and have a backlog of anime to review. Regardless, Maya Phillips has a brief review of the movie. The movie combines “traditional hand drawing and C.G.I. technology.” Children of the Sea is an odd story that has phenomenal animation. Maya compliments the score by Joe Hisaishi calling it “whimsical string-heavy,” and “dazzling.” However, she’s not fond of the conflict between the C.G.I. and drawing saying that “the drawings make the C.G.I. look artificial, and the C.G.I. flattens the drawings.” 

Check out the review.

How anime depicts athletes

Also in the times is an article discussing the limits anime chooses when animating athletes. Maya Phillips writes “Because animation is free from the physical limitations of reality, it would be simple for these anime shows to slough off trifles like gravity” . . . ” they depict athletes as living just a few toes beyond the realm of possibility.” She mentions series like Yuri on IceHaikyuu!!, and Kuroko’s Basketball. She talks about how these series “dramatizes athletes surpassing the body’s limits.” She end’s the piece with Yuri on Ice, focusing on fluid animation, “The skaters swivel and swerve, fan out their arms and legs in a large circular sweep, then tuck themselves into tidy spins.” 

Check out the article.

Concept art for Black Myth: WuKong
Concept art for Black Myth: WuKong

A promising indie game

Final a few days ago I was introduced to a stunning game called Black Myth: Wukong. A project from Chinese indie developer Game Science, the gameplay trailer is impressive. According to IGN the founder, Feng Ji, wanted to use the video as a recruitment tool. IGN goes through what is currently known about the title and its developer. Game Science was founded in 2014 and produces mobile and free-to-play games. The story is based on the classic Chinese myth, Journey to the West. It gets its name from Sun Wukong or the Monkey King. Unfortunately, the game doesn’t have a release date, so it’s unclear when we could see it. 

Check out the preview


Top 5 Studio 4°C Projects

Challenge: The A-Z of Anime!

I’ve been looking for another challenge to do and finally found one. The A-Z of Anime Challenge is probably self-explanatory, regardless the rules are as follows:

Rules:

#1 Pick a favorite series/movie for each letter of the alphabet. For titles starting with “a” “an” or “the” use the first letter of the next word of the title.

#2 Since many titles have multiple names based on the language that you are using please pick one language for the entire list (Use all English titles or all Japanese titles) and let the readers know which language you will be using. If a title has the same name regardless of the language then it can be used in any list.

#3 If you don’t have a title that fits under a particular letter, you can name another favorite from a different letter in it’s place, just indicate which letter spot you are using for that series. This can be done up to three times. If you can’t fill a spot then you can leave it blank. No more than 26 total series are allowed.

#4 Including a picture for each series is encouraged.

#5 Share who tagged you for this challenge and nominate 3 more to try it themselves and include links to their blogs.

#6 Just have fun with this challenge. I wanted to get everyone to share some favorite series and to spread the word about awesome blogs!

Since I haven’t been tagged I will be ignoring part of #5. I will be using English titles. Let’s go.


A is for Attack on Titan

B is for Bleach

C is for Cardcaptor Sakura

D is for Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba

E is for Evangelion

F is for Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood

G is for Goblin Slayer

H is for Hunter X Hunter

I is for Inuyasha

J is for JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure

K is for Kill La Kill

L is for Little Witch Academia

M is for My Hero Academia

N is for Naruto

O is for One Piece

P is for The Promised Neverland

Q is for Made in Abyss

R is for Rurouni Kenshin

S is for Samurai Champloo

T is for Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann

U is for Mob Psycho 100

V is for Vinland Saga

W is for Witch Hunter Robin

X is for One-Punch Man

Y is for Yu Yu Hakusho

Z is for Zombieland Saga

Kiado shocks, the Harry Potter Challenge, and Little Witch Academia

The three main protagonists from Little Witch Academia
The three main protagonists from Little Witch Academia

Kaido stuns the Pirates in chapter 985 of One Piece

Jay over at RJ Writing Ink reviews the latest chapter of One Piece. After a two week hiatus, the series returns with a shocking moment. As Kiado puts the end to “Wano” and begins his new “Onigashima Plan” this arc is making a dramatic turn. Together with Big Mom, Kiado plans on “seize the Ancient Weapons, conquer the world, and gain the One Piece.” That last part is certain to get Luffy’s attention. This chapter has a lot going on. Kanjuro’s clashes with the Scabbards, Nami, and Carrot are captured by Big Mom, and Luffy rushes to save Momonosuke. 

Check out the review

The 30 Day Harry Potter Challenge

Megan from the Geeky Gal blog is one day 21 of the Harry Potter challenge, which asks “What edible treat(s) would you like to try in the Wizarding World?” She tried several Harry Potter inspired treats at Universal Studios in Orlando, from “the Pumpkin Juice, to the Butterbeer, Chocolate Frogs, Fizzing Whizzbees, and Every Flavor Jelly Beans.” Megan will release the full list of 30 after she finishes. Until then I encourage you to read her list

A Little Witch Academia review

If you have been reading this blog long enough then you know I love Little Witch Academia. Originally a Kickstarter, the series began with two short films, Little Witch Academia and Little Witch Academia: The Enchanted Parade. Two years later it became a series on Netflix premiering in 2017. The Traditional Catholic Weeb loved this series as well, stating that “LITTLE WITCH ACADEMIA IS ONE OF THE GREATEST ANIME THAT GOD HAS BLESSED ME WITH THE PRIVILEGE OF SEEING.” The review is well worth the read. Check it out and if you haven’t seen Little Witch Academia the series is still on Netflix. 

Anime Movie Review: Little Witch Academia: The Enchanted Parade

Celebrating the 7th Anniversary of blogging at Otaku Orbit

Mob Psycho 100 celebrating
Mob Psycho 100 celebrating

There was a time when I was afraid of writing for the public. I didn’t think I was smart enough or a good writer. Regardless, this blog has done well since 2013. Today marks my 7th-anniversary blogging on WordPress. To celebrate, I created a list of 7 things I learned while blogging. 

Here we go:

  1. I learned to be a much better writer. On way to become better at something is to do it frequently. Having read some of my older posts, I use to be a terrible writer. Poor sentence structure, grammar, and word choices. I’m not saying that my writing is perfect now, but it’s much better than it uses to be.
  2. Joining a larger anime community. I was initially afraid that nobody would read my blog let alone comment. However, over time I started to receive likes and comments. Some bloggers were more active than others and unfortunately some stop blogging. I have fallen short of the kind of interaction that I wanted but I’m working on it. 
  3. I expanded my anime tastes. Before this blog, all my anime favs were largely shonen. Part of the reason I want to blog was to watch different anime. While most of the anime is still popular among fans, the genre’s were different from what I found typical. Particularly, series like Yuri on Ice, Made in Abyss, and Haikyuu. 
  4. Willing to be critical. I was afraid of being criticized for some of my thoughts. However, being critical of someone else can be even harder. It’s not like MAPPA would read my blog or care, but being will to be negative can feel daunting. It’s important to be clear and kind, as your being critical. 
  5. Reignited my love of comics. I abandoned comics after discovering anime and manga. It wasn’t that I didn’t love Batman or the X-Men but comics were too inconsistent. Unlike in the manga, American comic books can have multiple artists and writers. This leads to inconsistent art styles and storylines. Despite this, I reestablished my love of comics. Many comics still have consistency issues, but I could find a more consistent series. Pepe Larraz art rocks. 
  6. Increased my knowledge of animation. Anime is nothing without good animation. Opinions vary on what makes animation good. Generally, I believe Sakuga animation is best. However, before writing this blog I was ignorant of the term. If you want to learn more read this blog and you will understand. 
  7. I’m a better blogger. This should be obvious but I’m a much superior blogger than used to be. I understand more about SEO, blogging on schedules, keywords, and content quality. My posts are longer (they use to be one sentence) and more sophisticated. I have learned to use social media to promote my blog (except Facebook, I haven’t figured it out yet). Like my writing, I still need to improve. I’m eager to learn. 

Thank you for reading. Let’s hope I can blog for 7 more.

10 More of My Favorite Anime OP’s

Why I’m excited for The God of High School Anime

The God of Highschool Promotional art

I have recently finished Megalo Box and gotten into martial arts anime, Baki, and Kengan Ashura on Netflix. I’ve always enjoyed anime with fighting like Dragon BallYu Yu Hakusho, and Naruto. However, these series featured martial arts as part of a larger story they didn’t center around a tournament. Anime like Baki is considered to be sports anime. For the sake of this post, I will refer to them as martial arts anime. What separates the typical shonen series from martial arts anime is the level of analysis of fighting. You can find this during any shonen tournament arc, however, the martial arts anime take it to a whole new level. 

Another difference is how powerful an average fighter is. Most martial arts anime keep things inside the ring. Later in the series, many shonen characters become so powerful that they couldn’t reasonably fight within a tournament psychical limits anymore, Dragon Ball Super tournament being an exception. BakiMegalo Box, and Kengan Ashura are more than hyper-violent men brutalizing each other. All fighters have a backstory that tells the audience why they fight. Kengan Ashura, in particular, goes into where the style of each fighter comes from, and how that style functions. Each character has an arc to various levels of interest. 

Regardless, my new found love of martial arts anime has set the table for the upcoming, The God of High School. Based on the manhwa of the same name, The God of High School is a series that follows Jin Mori and his friends as they compete in a tournament. The fighters borrow powers from the Gods and use a variety of fighting styles and weapons. It’s unclear whether the series will share the same type of detail as the other series, but I hope it will. I expect the series to focus on the fighters as people and warriors. Produced by MAPPA, the animation is stellar, and I can’t wait until July 6th. 


The God of Highschool begins July 6th

One Piece Chapter 982: Recap and Review

Attack on Titan, Jujutsu Kaisen and Fire Force Trailers

Promo for Attack on Titan season 4
Promo for Attack on Titan season 4

Fire Force Season 2 trailer

It feels like the first season of Fire Force just ended. Regardless, the second season of Fire Force will start this year in July. A child with the Adolla Bursts will be born, pitting the 8th Company and the followers of Evangelist against each other. Season 2 will introduce new characters such as Ogun Montgomery, a friend of Shinra, and Arthur, he’s currently a member of Company 4. I cooled on the series after about half the first season, but the trailer seems to offer more than the first. I’m hoping it won’t be underwhelming.

The dynamic of the Fire Force and the Evangelist battling over the “Pillar” is what most interests me. What’s the child’s story? Will it be a tragic one like Shinra’s? The animation is still top-notch so I think I’ll give it another shot.


Jujutsu Kaisen Season 1 trailer

Jujutsu Kaisen is a manga series that I heard little about. A series illustrated and written by Gege Akutami, in its 11th volume. Jujutsu Kaisen follows the story of Yuji Itadori, a high school student that joins the Occult Research Club. Yuji’s grandfather is on his deathbed, but before he dies he instills two messages in Yuji “always help people” and “die surrounded by a crowd”. Yuji, however, understands this message as everyone deserves a “proper death.”

He learns that he made contact with a “high grade cursed charm talisman” its a rotting finger that his friends in the Occult Club unseal. The finger attracts evil creatures that prey on evil emotions. Desperate without magical power, Yuji decides to swallow the finger, becoming the host for a creature named Sukuna. Despite his possession, Yuji can keep control of his body. However, all sorcerers are required to exorcise Sukuna (and Yuji). Satoru Gojo, a teacher of Tokyo Metropolitan Magic Technical College plans to postpone Yuji’s death “until he consumes all of Sukuna’s fingers, allowing them to kill him once and for all.”

This series sounds interesting and weird. I’ll give it a shot, the first season begins in October 2020.


Attack on Titan Season 4 trailer

Last week the trailer for the fourth and final season of Attack on Titan (Shingeki no Kyojin) was released and it was glorious. The final season of the acclaimed series will be produced by a new studio, with MAPPA (Dorohedoro, Yuri on Ice) replacing WIT studio. Yuchiro Hayashi (Dorohedoro) will be directing, while Hiroshi Seko (Ajin, Vinland Saga, Mob Psycho 100) and AOT season 1-3 scriptwriter, will oversee scripts. If anyone had doubts about whether a new studio will do right by the series, the trailer should ease that fear. The final season seems to start after a time skip, with many of the characters having a change in appearance.

The trailer opens with an unknown character who appears to be the sole survivor of conflict during war. We get glimpses of some of the characters we know like Reiner, Mikasa, and Eren. They’re noticeably older and seemed to be hardened by war. On the titan front, we see Eren and Reiner’s form, in addition to two new titans, one that resembles a lion and another that looks like the silver surfer. The trailer effectively portrays the chaos of war, while, pointing to mysteries that the series still holds. MAPPA makes good use of the music that the series is known for, as well as dynamic imagery. If this doesn’t get you excited for the final season I don’t know what will.

Samurai 8’s failure, Burn the Witch, and an argument for a Bleach sequel

What I look for in anime and manga (Updated)

Six years ago (when no one read this blog) I wrote about what I looked for when choosing anime and manga series to follow. The content is still relevant and now that I reach a larger audience I would like to know what you guys think.

Every anime fan has their own criteria for what they consider good quality anime and manga. I would like to share my own standards.

Story

Obviously the story is one of the most important aspects of any storytelling medium. Anime can focus on stories with more mature themes such as erotica or horror. Some stories are rather simple (Pokemon) and other can be complex ( Evangelion). Both can be enjoyable for different reasons obviously. Creating an engrossing world, with characters that are easy to relate to is important. If the creator can’t make you love the characters, why would you care what happens to them.

Art/ Animation

I’m an artist and generally judge manga/anime based on art style and quality animation. Some of my favorite manga based on art are Naruto, One Piece and Bleach. If you know anything about these series you know that they’re also among the most popular. I believe part of the reason they’re so successful is due to their art. Each series has its own unique art style.

Anime animation can at times appear to be limited. Sometimes the mouth of a character is the only part of a characters face that moves during dialogue. The consistent use of static imagery can leave a lot to the imagination. However, there is superior animation found in some anime called “sakuga“. It can be too time consuming and expensive to animate this way so it’s often use occasionally.

Character Balance

Some anime/manga suffer from “main character syndrome“. Many of the main characters tend to be disproportionately stronger than their counterparts. Almost all characters live to be saved by the main character, it becomes tedious. In some cases secondary characters are on par with or surpass the main character although its generally temporary.  That said I understand the main character can’t lose every battle or even most battles. Some balance between characters is required. In Bleach the main character is Ichigo, I think he’s a over powered.

I don’t recall him ever losing a battle and he seems to always find new hidden powers somewhere. I makes a mockery of the other characters, as they become reduced to simple placeholders until Ichigo arrives to save everyone. Monkey D. Luffy (One Piece) is clearly the strongest of his crew but they hold their own in battle against many foes. Luffy has lost many battles and isn’t the even close to being the strongest character currently in the series. He of course still benefits from being a main character. He could never died but he can still lose.

Character Design

The design of the character’s are not really important to me personally. However, I feel you could generally tell whether a character is important or not depending on their detail. Characters like “Sai” in Naruto and basically all the soldier’s in the Quincy army in Bleach ( see Manga 544) are rather plain. This tells me that the importance is temporary , non – existent or  they’re going to died soon.

Action/Battle

Not all the manga and anime I enjoy are battle heavy (Death Note) but, most are. Generally speaking the best battles tend to have sakuga animation. Sakuga animation usually makes action better but doesn’t necessarily mean that a scene couldn’t be good without it. The length of battle matters, too short and it’s a disappointment. If the fight is too long it can become a drag.

So what is your personal view on what makes anime/ manga good? Do you agree with me? What are your criticisms? Should I add to my standards?

The Sunshine Blogger Award Challenge

I’ve been nominated for the Sunshine Blogger Award by Sonatano1 of Everything is bad for you, thanks. As part of being nominated, the recipient answers the eleven questions they’re given from the nominator. I will try to answer the question to the best of my ability. Here we go:

1) What’s your favorite or most-used medium for entertainment? I would have to say video games.

2) What character in a work of fiction would you inhabit and why?  (Assuming you’re experiencing the entire storyline of the game/novel/film/whatever as this character.) Probably Monkey D. Luffy, he’s been through some hard times, but I would love the adventure.

3) What work would you wipe all memories of from your brain if you could so that you could experience it all over again? Naruto.

4) What’s the most annoying trend occurring in your favorite medium today? Online multiplayer games. I like the solo campaign.

5) What’s the most promising trend occurring in your favorite medium today? Free to play. I know there can be problems, but with so many good games having so be free would help.

6) How much or how little romance do you like in your games/films/novels/etc.? Very little.

7) If you had to be the ruler of one country in any work of fiction, which one would you pick? Hyizuru from Attack on Titan. Clear I’m a glutton for punishment.

8) Do you think virtual reality will improve anytime in the near future to the extent that it’s actually worth using?  Or are we already at that point? I don’t think technology is ever at it’s peak. VR seems to still be in it’s infancy.

9) I’ve heard people say that the novel is a dying form of art and that changes in attention span length and the constant multitasking our generation is involved in will make them obsolete.  If you have an opinion on that matter, do you agree or disagree? If a “novel” requires a psychical book then, yes.

10) Are you optimistic about the future of the human race? Yes, we’ll get it together eventually.

11) Cake or pie?  (There’s only one right answer.) CAKE.


Now the hard part, coming up with 11 questions and nominations:

  1. What’s your favorite anime genre. Why?
  2. What’s your favorite series in that genre?
  3. How often do you blog?
  4. What aspect of your blog do you love the most?
  5. What advice would you give a new blogger?
  6. What anime/manga series are you looking forward to?
  7. Which is worst, anime video games or movies?
  8. Which video game universe would you like to visit?
  9. Which manga series would you like to see become an anime?
  10. What’s your most popular post? Why do you think that is?
  11. If you could transform into a mythological creature, which one would it be?

And the nominees are (feel free to ignore the award if your not interested)

  1. https://ayrgalaxy.wordpress.com/
  2. https://mattdoylemedia.com/
  3. https://drunkenanimeblog.com/
  4. https://100wordanime.blog/
  5. https://solitarycubbyhole.wordpress.com/
  6. https://novasaber.wordpress.com/
  7. https://mammothbaseoperacastle.wordpress.com/
  8. https://dreager1.com/
  9. https://anotheranimereview.com/blog/
  10. https://rjwriting.ink/
  11. https://airshipmatchalatte.wordpress.com/

My Pirate Crew Tag

First I would like to thank Merlin Musings for tagging me. I’ve seen this tag around for a while and was wonder if someone would tag me. Lynn Sheridan is credited with creating this tag. The tag is inspired of course by One Piece. Regardless, Let’s get to my crew:

The Rules

  1. Display the My Pirate Crew logo and add ‘My Pirate Crew’ as a tag.
  2. Thank the blogger who nominated you and post a link to their blog.
  3. Link back to the original post here (so I can compare your crews to mine).
  4. Select seven anime characters and give them a position on the crew. These are the positions you can to fill. Warrior, sniper, chef, doctor, scientist, navigator, strategist, mechanic, entertainer.
  5. Nominate 5-10 bloggers.
  6. Set sail and rule the seas!

My Crew

The Navigator – Hyuga Neji

Neji is a member of the Hyuga clan. As a prodigy, Neji is highly intelligent. The reason I have chose him for my navigator is simple, the Byakugan. The Byakugan grants the user a ” near 360º diameter field of vision” and the ability to see over 20 kilometers away, along with vision that can “can penetrate through any solid objects or obstructions.” I think this ability makes him a perfect navigator.


The Chef – Brock

Brock from Pokemon is the former Pewter City Gym Leader. The eldest of nine children, which his absentee father left him in the care of, Brock is known for his domestic abilities. He’s a caretaker at heart, good at sewing, cleaning and of course cooking. He’s also capable of creating food for animals, which could be helpful.


The Entertainer – Mako Mankanshoku

Mako is hyperactive, fearless, silly and funny. She also manages to be lazy with all that energy that result in a clash of personality traits. Mako was the primary source of humor in the Kill la Kill. She can also be quite dramatic and interrupt moments of seriousness.


The Mechanic – Duo Maxwell

Duo is the pilot of the XXXG-01 Gundam Deathscythe. Duo is an expert at communication and computer based work. As a member of the Sweeper Group, Duo loved “tinker with scrap metal and junk computer bits.” His talent is undeniable.


The Sniper – Yoko Littner

Yoko is a member of Team Dai-Gurren in the anime Gurren Lagann. She’s often armed with a range of firearms including a “long range sniper rifle.” She’s a skilled marksman with her rifle, able to hit weak spots from large distances. She has also shown the ability to hit moving targets during high conflict battles.


The Strategists – Shikamaru Nara

Shikamaru has an IQ of over 200. He’s able to quickly calculate the limits of his opponents and his allies to create or determine complicated strategies. He’s able to keep track of the location of everyone relative to everything else. He studies behavior of enemies, Shikamaru is able to think ten moves ahead of his opponents.


The Doctor – Sakura Haruno

Sakura has been blessed with Chakra control that has seen her acquire massive strength and Medical Ninjutsu. Sakura is able to heal almost any injury. Sakura’s proficiency in medical ninjutsu is extremely rare. She can extract poisons, as well perform surgeries without a instruments. She’s also able to create poison antidotes effortlessly. Her medical skills ” extends to more standard medicine as well, enabling her to perform autopsies and examine cells with a knowledge of genetics.” She’s even created her own Military Rations Pills.


The Scientists – Kisuke Urahara

Kisuke is a former Captain of the 12th Division. He’s also the founder and first President of the Shinigami Research and Development Institute (S.R.D.I). Kisuke has developed many inventions, is able to equipment such as his “holographic computer interface.” He responsible for creating the most “amazing” thing in Soul Society. He has managed to create new inventions quickly. He’s a highly capable chemist and medic.


The Warrior – Broly

I’m choosing the new Broly, as the original one was a bit insane. Regardless, Broly is a saiyan with near limitless power. As a member of the saiyan race he’s a born warrior. They aim to become the strongest in the universe, they’re built for fighting. Most notable when a saiyan survives a near death experience they grow even stronger. Broly is the ultimate warrior.


Nominations:

Eiichiro Oda claims One Piece is near it’s end

One Piece vol. 90 cover

Eiichiro Oda the creator of One Piece, revealed that the manga series is “near” it’s ending, while on the Honma dekka!? program. He claims that One Piece is going to run “just over 100 volumes.” Most volumes are 10 chapters long and One Piece is currently at it’s 90th volume. What does “just over mean,” exactly, we can’t really know. However, if you do the math between volume 81-90 it seems that 10 volumes take about 2 years.

Oda also stated that he had “thought about the manga’s ending since he was still in college.” Furthermore, if a fan was able to predict the ending he would “change the ending.” The shows host, Sanma Akashiya, asked Oda if the One Piece “treasure” was “family bonds.” Oda replied “No, I hate that kind of thing.” Many fans wonder if the treasure isn’t really something of substance like gold or something that psychically real.

Oda seems to feel that not giving a “real” treasure is “really dissatisfying.” I glad that the One Piece treasure isn’t something like “hope,” or the adventure is the treasure. In a July 2016 interview, Oda claimed that he had finished 65% of the series. However, OnePiece.com columnist Greg Werner believe’s that fans should put in less stock into Oda’s claims as the series will “continue for some time” and he tends to tell stories that are “tongue-in-cheek and for the shock value.”

Source: ANN