Little Busters - Overall Impressions & Total Season Rating
This thread is to be used for discussing the entire episodes of Little Busters ... your thoughts about the show, overall impressions, expectations and hopes about Blu-Ray/DVD-exclusive footage etc.
A few subjects you might want to ramble on about:
And so on.
The poll represents your total series rating. In other words, how you would rate all the episodes combined (1-10)? If you'd rather rate the whole series by technical/artistic merits, you can do so. An example:
Animation Quality: 1-10
Voice Actors: 1-10
Emotional Involvement: 1-10
Average = Total Series Rating
Or a combination of the two. Or your general gut feeling.
Feel free to discuss and more importantly, have fun :)
By the way, I know that some people would say that you shouldn't really judge the show at this point because it's only half-done, and it's a story that you need to watch in whole to appreciate. But nevertheless, it's our habit to have these sorts of threads after every season, so perhaps people can just post their opinions so far keeping in mind that it isn't over.
I think it was a perfect setup for ~Refrain~.
It had some dramatic moments that all came to a good end, making the watcher soft.
Meanwhile, I'm expecting that ~Refrain~ will have them even stronger and won't clear them that fast, making the effect on the watcher even bigger.
Anyhow, keeping things short, I'll give it a 10/10 with high expectations for the Second Season.
The thing that annoyed me the most is the music placement,it just....sucks.By doing that wrong,they not only insulted the already wonderful BGMs from the VN but also ruined some scenes along the way. >.>
They should totally fire the music director and not allowing him anywhere near Refrain.
As for the animation,I just want to ask where the hell did all the budget going to.
Mio's new VA did a wonderful job - check
Komari's voice still sound like porn - check
Riki sound less girly than in VN - check
Everyone else's voice beside Kanata is good - check
Now Kanata's voice has the most notable change.Her voice sound really deep,scary like an old woman which I don't like at all,but they forced her VA into doing that so that's not VA's fault,I guess.
And ofc,as I complained somewhere here,they spent too many episodes on common route and repetitive comedies that isn't funny anymore while cutting and rushing the heroine's arcs.I think people begin to drop the show after all those common eps after Komari arc.The peak of dropping is at test of courage episode,I think.
All that said,I still enjoy the show and appreciated some nice insights it gave for some arcs.
Well,I feel like J.C did try and I'm being totally biased for anything LB! related so
It could have been better though.
Unlike what other people says, I think J.C Staff handled this season pretty well, let's not forget the Anime-Only watchers don't know what the Visual Novel Players do, and I think J.C Staff are pretty well aware of that fact.
Now, of course this season had some minor, to major problems, which I won't mention for spoiler-free sake.
Let's not forget we're dealing with J.C Staff here..
I think the animation quality was, well.. Kinda weird in the first half, and it got better in the second, increase of budget half-way?
I think it was good for what it really is, a prologue to Refrain, with the character routes 'jammed' in.
Thus I will go more in depth on the Refrain overall impressions.
Voice Acting 8/10:
I think that it was really good, and was fitting each character, glad they toned down Rin and Komari in the anime.. They blew my ears up in the novel.. :heh:
Character design 7.5/10:
Well, aside from the fact that they rendered it in 'Moe Form', I think it was fairly good, I actually prefer some designs from the anime better than the novel
I believe they kept the same tracks from the novel, so if you liked the novel's tracks, then you already love these.
Well, as mentioned, too bad it had some really weird/bad placement..
I don't know much about that, so I'll pass.
It was fairly fine to me, aside from the 'funny scenes' that were repeated so many times they made me go "...Meh.." [Which is too bad cause I'd usually laugh my head off at those scenes in the novel.] it's quite enjoyable if you don't have anything in your to-watch list.
Gotta love those trolling scenes.
Emotional Involvement 6.5/10:
If you finished the VN before watching the anime like I did, you can be pretty involved in some scenes... Unfortunately, not enough for me.
Total Series Rating 7.9/10:
Now, you can freely call me a 'simplist that doesn't see the true values behind the moe' but I believe that for a prologue, it was really good, thus I shall put all my hope on Refrain.
We have high expectations J.C Staff, don't betray us.
Sorry for the wall of text, I can't express what I truly think without those.. :heh:
Animation Quality: 8
Animation was solid for the most part. A few frames were deformed, and certain angles stretched and compressed characters, but otherwise, I can say I liked the animation.
Voice Actors: 8
Kyousuke voicing was my favorite of the lot. His character's writing might play a large part in that, but the VA did a good job portraying him imo. Everyone played their part, but nobody really struck me as outstanding.
For the type of story they had to adapt, I liked the way the script was written. There's only so much they could write without dead giving away the "secret" of the world. Visual novel readers were given some cues here and there.
The Little Busters song grew on me after playing the game. That's just the one that gains the most meaning as the story progresses though. LB's soundtrack has emotion going for it. A good number of the songs really tug at the heart strings (Song for Friends, Just One Magic Word, Faraway, etc.).
Can't say I really know what this means either.
Having finished reading the visual novel around half way through, I took the liberty of reviewing the episodes before I finished the game. They played with the story order to smoothly transition between arcs, but that was a good move imo. Little Busters the animation had some gains for the original material it lost.
Emotional Involvement: 7.5
With how the character relationships were taken one notch down, there's just not as much character exploration. I liked the characters, but that was mostly from the original format's development.
Masterpiece would be an overstatement, and good doesn't quite cut it. I give it a better than good.
What I still think is remarkable about this production is that the lead writer penned the script herself for 23 out of the 26 episodes (with only one other writer for the three remaining). That's a lot of effort to ensure the script has continuity, but of course it also means that the writer's own personal sensitivities colour the work a bit more. In either case, this is definitely a more costly/time-consuming way of doing things, so it's clear that a lot of effort was placed here (and also that the Production Committee really put a lot of faith in the writer they chose for such a daunting -- some called near-impossible -- task).
I just saw episode 12 and I'm struggling to keep interest in this show.
In the beginning it felt similar to Angel Beats, which I loved, but the plot of LB is just moving so slow.
The Komari arc just bored me to tears and now it's a Nishizono arc who I care about just as much as Komari. This girl comes out of nowhere and the viewer is suddenly supposed to care about her? It doesn't work that way. Nothing about her has make her likeable to me. Which is probably the point of her character.
Right now I like the goofy moments and the foreshadowing about the secret of the world and how the mysterious note writer knew that the cafeteria ladies would all be gone. But those moments are few and far between. I'm also probably setting myself up for a disappointment by expecting a reveal close in scale to Angel Beats.
Alright here are my thoughts :)
Animation Quality: 7.5/10
Obviously th animation faltered in many places. The animation wasn't the high point of this series. The character models were often sloppy at times and weren't quite as well done as they should have been. A choice not related to animation was an art choice, character designs. Many character designs were changed to match one style (Na-Ga), which i didn't agree with for the most part such as Haruka, Kurugaya, Riki and Komari. I understand they wanted to make it more cohesive, but I found the worst change in Riki and Kurugaya it effected their personalities to me. Overall decent animation but not fantastic or great.
Voice Actors: 9/10 Really well done in this area. Everyone did an excellent job I found. I was a bit disappointed that Mio's voice actress (Shiho Kawaragi) was not able to join the cast. I also found Kanata too be a little too harsh at times and Haruka not to be quite up to par at the beginning. I was very shocked by the choice for Riki's voice since he was voiced by Horie Yui, whom does female roles. I found her to be a better match than the visual novel (Tomoe Tamiyasu) myself, making Riki sounded more masculine which was good. Sasami (Sora Tokui) I thought was a fine choice and did an equal good job as Tamiyasu.
I found they did a decent job with the script but i found many points were left out. I know it was hard for them to put in everything into a certain amount of time. But, other parts seemed like they could have fleshed out if some parts were removed.
Soundtrack: 8.5/10 Great use of used tracks and un used tracks from the game. It was a bit awkward when used a characters theme when they were not on-screen. I found the placement of a certain track not used in the original, enhanced a lot of the moments that took place. I was disappointed that they used some instrumental tracks when I thought they should be used much later for better emotional impact. I do wish they used some original tracks or remixed some to make them more unique.
Enjoyment: 8.5/10 I enjoyed this much more than I thought I would have, after finding out Kyoani did not animate this. I was very glad at some additions made to the story that I did not expect. I grew interested each week to see what changes would be made and how the animated version would compare/improve on the visual novel counterpart. To look forward to how they will improve of many issues I had with Refrain and look forward to more in general :)
Emotional Involvement: 7.5/10 I found some parts did not strike me at all in the same way as the novel. Lots of moments lost some impact due to the strict time constraints.Truth be told, I did not have too much emotional involvement with the some of the game either, until certain parts and the later half. But I did find many parts done very well such as Miyuki's scene and lots of the comedy. It was really great to see how certain scenes would look whenthey moved so that helped to enhance the mood in many ways.
The secret world bits are in between the show and will be revealed next season. There is a second part after these 26 episodes, called Refrain so the story isn't quite over yet. There is also lots more comedy and mysterious notes to come :)
My final rating for this first season of Little Busters! is 8/10. That's apparently a generous rating based on what we have so far, so let me explain it a bit.
Rather than break this anime down into its component parts, I'm going to sum up what I liked and what I didn't like about this anime with pros and cons.
1. Protagonist Camaraderie. As odd as most of the LB's are individually, I find them very easy to buy into collectively. In other words, they feel like a very believable group of friends to me. And I think that a big part of the reason for this is the relative lack of gender bias here. The Little Busters eventually compromises 4 guys and 6 girls. An almost 1:1 ratio. I find that easier to buy into than 1 guy and a bunch of girls, or 1 guy (and his wingman) and a bunch of girls. But in any event, these 10 major protagonists really do come across as a great bunch of friends, and that's one of the most charming, endearing, and immersive aspects of the show.
2. Bright, Bold Colors. I love the look of Little Busters. It really suits the "idyllic youthful zeal" that the show implicitly (and sometimes explicitly) promotes. I love all the bright, blue skies and vibrant colors. Say what you will about the animation quality of the show, but its character designs, settings, and backgrounds are always pleasant to look at, imo.
3. Character Development By the time the final episode of this season rolled around, my impression is that most of the core cast (and some of the supporting cast characters like Kanata) had been nicely developed. While there wasn't necessarily a lot of character changes here, just about all of the key characters were impressively fleshed out. Everybody had their moments to shine. Anego is still somewhat mysterious, but then her route is yet to come from what I was told.
4. Cute Girls. Say what you want about them, they are cute! Both in appearance, and in personality.
5. Cool Guys. Kyousuke and Kengo are genuinely very cool dudes, with several "moments of awesome". Riki is getting there. Masato... has his moments at least. I can't think of any other recent anime show that mixes Cool Guys with Cute Girls as well as this show does!
6. Plot Twists. Some of the girl's routes had pretty startling plot twists. I love how "hardcore" the Haruka and Kud routes were, in particular.
7. Comedy. It wasn't always great, but it often was.
8. Seiyu work. All the voices really suited the characters, imo. No seiyu struck me as "mailing it in".
9. Kanata and Sasami. Good, theatrical antagonists. Very entertaining. Almost enough to make me regret Kanata's face turn. ;)
1. Pacing. This show was a bit on the slow side. There were times when LB seemed to be spinning its wheels to me. It could come off as somewhat meandering at times. In something like K-On!, this is no big deal, but since Key is known for its dramatic impact, it was a bit disappointing for me. And that segues into the next con...
2. Lack of Dramatic Impact. I'm not sure if this show made me cry even once. I remember being moved from time-to-time, but I don't remember ever being moved to tears by it. While I like Komari and Mio, their arcs had little emotional impact on me. Haruka and Kud's arcs were entertainingly "hardcore", but they also didn't make me tear up much. I'm not sure if this is just me getting desensitized to Key narratives, or if LB! just lacked some of the tearjerking magic that Clannad and Kanon had for me. Or maybe it was due to...
3. Lack of Romance. This anime has made me reconsider my stance on unified format vs. omnibus format when it comes to VN adaptations. With Komari, Mio, and Haruka, I can definitely see where clear-cut romance would have jazzed up their routes and added some greater emotional poignancy to them. But I guess the lack of romance might have been inevitable here. Hopefully it's something that Refrain will address.
On the whole, I liked Little Busters a fair bit. It had a good blend of a generally upbeat mood, occasional plot surprises, a likeable male lead, and a cast of characters colorful enough to match its boldly bright visuals. It had a nice sense of style and authenticity to it. But it lacked a certain emotional depth to it that stopped it from being on par with Clannad for me.
Still, a very solid job overall, and I'm now comfortable with JC Staff being Key's anime partner of choice.
Then the secret isn't revealed this season.
Positivity? In MY Little Busters board?!?!
Like many others before me, giving this an 8/10. JC really delivered on the common route aspect of the show - the group scenes were the most impacting, some even done better than the original work! My biggest gripe with the common route scenes was the battles. Arrgh, they did them all wrong. You see Masato lose in a battle once, and you know what'll happen for every other battle. Where's my Kyousuke vs Riki, or Komari vs Kengo? So much potential wasted right there.
One thing to note is this anime operated on a strict schedule. I'd probably rather they did the common route first and then moved onto the heroine arcs so we could go grow more attached to their characters before the drama set in, but this is how it went. The heroine arcs were alright. The could've definitely been done better if they had more time allocated them, but the anime is running on a strict schedule, so they could only afford 3 episodes per heroine. Given this limitation, I think they did pretty good overall. There are some moments where the lack of romance works, and others where things start making less sense. Why did Riki care about Mio so much? Sometimes the banner of 'friendship' doesn't feel as satisfying as actual love.
But, I believe that for all the areas they were forced to cut corners on during season 1, they did so to focus on building to season 2. I have high hopes for Refrain. They should have a lot more time to do what they need to do, and give the story the proper attention it deserves. It should also start getting a lot more linear from here on out - something many anime viewers had complained about during this season. Remember, this was just the prologue. The heart of the story is yet to come.
Okay, finally got around to finishing this... It took me like three months after a Key-series ended to actually finish it. This is a sad day indeed.
This series was a huge let-down. I mean, disregarding the animation-quality (though I do think the artstyle was mostly okay... though it could have been so much better if they just turned down the brightness a few notches), and the previously mentioned point about lackluster music-placement, (biggest issue: FOR GOD'S SAKE STOP SPAMMING UNUSED TRACK 3. CONSTANTLY HEARING MISUZU'S THEME GOT RATHER DISTRACTING RATHER QUCKLY) this just wasn't particularly well written. Or well paced. I mean, seriously, four arcs? All of which only got three episodes each? In a 26 episode series? Doesn't that equate to over half the series being common route episodes?
Oh, and out of those arcs... Mio's was the only one I found even decent. And I do seem to be in the minority here as at least Haruka's arc seems to have been generally well received, but... okay, first off, Komari's arc was just boring. The fact that I find her voice extremely obnoxious did not help either. As for Haruka's arc, it seems like the overarching theme of that arc was meant to be like, mending the bond between estranged family members... Kud's arc having a similar theme... but the problem I had with both of these arcs is, they both also saw fit to throw in some ridiculously dark elements to generate drama... Dark elements that they then completely and utterly failed to address in a satisfactory manner. Haruka's family are so implausibly one-dimensionally evil that I can only imagine them all sitting around a table in a some elaborate ominous underground lair while twirling their mustaches, hatching evil schemes to bring misery to everyone while also having a few puppies running around to kick for good measure... and there is absolutely nothing in the story to indicate that anyone even thought to report these people to the cops? The way they abused those kids should warrant a freaking life-time in jail, for crying out loud, and yet all we get is just a casual remark that "We cut our ties with them"? And from what I understand, the VN didn't even have that.
But even that pales in comparison to that final episode of Kud's arc. So, our heroine goes back to her country to find her mother who may or may not have died... and the country is in a period of civil war. So she has to go into hiding, still unaware if her mother is alive or dead. Then they finally find that she is alive and she's about to be reunited with her... then she gets kidnapped, tortured and almost killed by terrorists. Uh, am I still watching the same show? And then this gets resolved in possibly the most blatant deus ex machina ever... and is then never spoken of again. In fact, all evidence points to Kud after this point being completely and utterly fine. Oh, and we don't even see her reunion with her mother either. Just... no. That is not effective storytelling. That is not even something vaguely resembling effective storytelling. You can't have a main character going through all that, and then just have her go "OOOH PRETTY STARS" and act as if this horrible near-death experience will have absolutely no long-lasting consequences on her... and then furthermore skip the reunion with her mother which was the entire point of her being there to begin with.
Yeah. I kind of hated that episode. In fact, I think I can safely say that that very episode was the main reason why it took me this long to finish the series.
So any good aspects of this series? Well, like I said, if one can look past the excessive brightness, the art-style and character-designs were pretty good, even if the animation was lacking in places. And Mio's arc, while a bit confusing, was still... okay-ish (Incidentally this is also the only route I've played through in the visual novel. I think they adapted it quite well), oh, and I mustn't forget... JC Staff did not slavishly stick to the standard opening and ending credits for every single episode regardless of whether that made sense or not. In this one respect, they managed to be better than KyoAni's Key VN adaptations. Granted, even then there were still a few episodes that used the standard ending where it really did not fit (not to mention the opening also feeling kind of jarring during some of the more dramatic episodes) but at least they showed some willingness to change it up every now and then. Oh, and at least some of the common route episodes were quite enjoyable. I found the sleepover episode aka "Riki is so girly that just slapping a girls' uniform on him fools everyone" to be particularly hilarious, and I suppose the ending was nice. But yeah, on the whole... Refrain is going to have to be absolutely out of this world in terms of quality for me to forgive this first season.
Yeah I wasn't too impressed with the routes in the game to be honest myself for the main girls. I really wanted to like Komari's but it wasn't done well at all. Haruka's was pulled off much better in the novel as the problem is fleshed out more and doesn't seem to left field. I did like Haruka and Mio's the best Kud's wasn't one I liked either.
It is fair to say Refrain does redeem a lot of what happened. I enjoyed it quite alot and I liked Rin's route as well. I just hope J.C staff does appropriate changes/added pieces to make some parts work better :)
Animation Quality: 9
Good one... I'm not visual novel player, but I think the art is still beautiful although J.C. Staff can do a better job. I like how they animate the jokes, battles' scene, and sad scene. Beautiful though it's still lack of emotion
Voice Actors: 9
I'm quite annoyed with Komari's voice (and sometimes Haruka's too). Others still very good for me
I should admit that the script is actually pretty good since it's another Key's masterpiece. But the adaptation just lack of some ability to picture them out completely. They did their best at Haruka's and Mio's arc but little fail at Kud's arc and Komari's arc. Mio's arc should be a boring one but the staff can bring it out and become enjoyable. In contrary, Kud's arc should be a very touching one but I feel little boring because they didn't foretell the ending well. It's like the ending is very rushed.
One thing I enjoy should be in "mysterious quest" scene and filler scene. I don't know but this is the first time I find the filler scene is more funny and enjoyable than the real plot.
I enjoy this anime from the beginning... almost bored and dropped during Komari's arc and the beginning of Mio's arc... but enjoy it very well till the end (I'm glad I pick up this show again)
Emotional Involvement: 10
I almost cry in Haruka's arc.....
Somehow I can feel how if I become Riki... and that's the proof about how Little Busters can influence my emotion.
9/10.... good show!!! Should do better in Refrain since they have set everything up in last three episodes
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