Hmm, I'm a bit surprised to know that you watched Saki after Madoka. Then again, I also watched it rather late myself, back in late 2010, a short while before Madoka started airing for Winter 2010 Season.
I actually liked Saki. I enjoyed it more than I expected to for a show about a game that I knew very little about (at the time). Its fusion of sports tournament with moe was something that I found rather unusual, and its cast of characters turned out to be mostly interesting for me, at least. The yuri subtext wasn't bad, either. Building up on the brush with yuri that I had from Touhou, Saki helped prepare me for the coming of my chosen OTP from Madoka★Magica.
The flashy "hax" mahjong hands the characters won the games with sparked my interest in the game to the point that after I finished watching, I read up on the rules of riichi mahjong and even found a riichi mahjong game program to play for a while (Saikyo no Mahjong 3D). Heck, even now I have a Saki riichi mahjong app on my Android phone, even though I don't really play all that often anymore.
I credit Saimoe for getting me interested in Saki. Its strong performance in the tournament for 2 years made me really curious about its appeal to the Saimoe voters (the same goes for my having watched all of Rozen Maiden and all of Nanoha). For the most part, it did not disappoint me except for the fact that it ended with a "this is only the beginning" feeling. Like an evil cliffhanger. Where is my season two!?
Yeah, at a visual level, that is where I'm getting some of my fondness for Sayaka/Madoka, lol.
I actually watched Saki after Madoka Magica. Nodoka's online persona looks a bit like a magical girl, so combined with Nodoka's overall look that made me think of Madoka. Saki's overall look is fairly close to Sayaka's (just with less blue, mainly), so it didn't take me long to make some broader mental connections there.
I'm curious, what did you think of Saki? Was it a show that you liked?
I never thought of the parallels those two shared with Madoka and Sayaka. With a bit more tweaking, it's easy to see it as a crossover. Now I think I see where you're visually getting part of your fondness for Sayaka x Madoka...
Don't worry about my character biases getting the best of me, as you know I may be a huge Sayaka fanboy , but I am aware that your Top 10 list isn't in the context of a cutthroat moe tournament-like environment where moe and character likability are the prime deciding factors. I can appreciate other great characters too.
I also like how you were able to sway a few of your readers into seeing Sayaka in a better light with some convincing points. Those are some of the things we really need to fight back against all the haters and the underappreciation Sayaka suffers from.
Thank you! I was kind of busy for the past two weeks, though I could still find time to check the forums from time to time. It's just that either I'm too tired to post, not in the mood, or not knowledgeable enough about the topic to reply meaningfully. Fell out of the "groove", or maybe even into a sort of posting slump since the moe tournaments ended.
I do plan to go online sometime then, but in case I can't do so on Christmas day, I will also greet you now in advance, Merry Christmas!