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Old 2012-04-11, 19:44   Link #21
Dark Wing
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Spoiler for nsfw:
So manga confirmed for yuri subtext?
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Old 2012-04-11, 19:59   Link #22
zeniselv
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i personally think A-1 is one of the anime studios with steadiest animation, their problem usually is the direction of the animes not the animation itself, still thay have done some of the most enjoyable animes these past couple of years.
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Old 2012-07-09, 13:49   Link #23
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Supposedly confirmed for fall from :some magazine: (well that's a no brainer since it was confirmed 2012 after all), website will be updated tomorrow/today (10th). A-1 pretty busy this year. Anime chara's updated in the website last month. Some manga scans too for those interested (nsfw and some a weeny bit disgusting).
Spoiler for pics:

The first two pics are what I had in mind when looking at the description, but the last one ... well we'll see how it goes. The designs do look pretty nice on the website though.
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Old 2012-07-09, 17:02   Link #24
Utsuro no Hako
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However, I personally has never trusted A-1 to do fight scenes well, but somehow (unrelated) this has a Ghibli feel to it that rather draws me in still.
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Studio Ghibli ... yeah. No.
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Old 2012-07-09, 23:14   Link #25
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Looking good!! Website updated too of course.
EDIT: According to the PV, music person would be Komori Shigeo, which ... is an interesting choice.

Last edited by Kunagisa; 2012-07-09 at 23:28.
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Old 2012-07-10, 00:15   Link #26
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6 A-1 shows for Fall now. Wow.
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Old 2012-07-10, 00:19   Link #27
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6 A-1 shows for Fall now. Wow.
They're also making a Fairy Tail movie (it comes out in August I think), and a Blue Exorcist movie (early 2013), as well as some announced series with no dates like Vivid Red Operation and Ore no Kanojo to Osananajimi ga Shuraba Sugiru. Huge studio.
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Old 2012-07-10, 01:18   Link #28
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Trailer seemed a lot darker than the first one. Count me in for this one.

A-1 seems to be getting more of identity since last year.
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Old 2012-07-10, 02:34   Link #29
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the summaries that ANN posts always sayed this was a dark story, but the imags pretty much seemed to contradict this, but things look very interesting and the animation looks top notch, that trailer managed to hype me.
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Old 2012-07-10, 03:05   Link #30
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Oh my ... seems like their success last year did pay off, and now they're mass producing decent-to-high production value projects without holding back -.-"
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Old 2012-07-10, 05:55   Link #31
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Looks Real Deal™ as hell. I'm trying to keep myself from getting overhyped about this anime, but it's not working.
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Old 2012-07-10, 06:07   Link #32
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It's no brainer that A-1 Pictures was the "winner studio" last year in terms of financial success having obtained 3 blockbuster sales in Anohana, Ao No Exorcist and Idolmaster as well as a bunch of mid-tier ones. Now, they seem to be going all out this year in terms of creativity. Good job A-1!

Now only if their production values matched Kyoani, PA Works or ufotable levels... They're not bad, but maybe above average at best.
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Old 2012-07-10, 11:20   Link #33
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I think A-1 is certainly more than above-average in terms of production values. I'd place them solidly near the top of the second tier behind Kyo, PA, and I.G. - and just as importantly, near the top in terms of consistency.
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Old 2012-07-10, 11:25   Link #34
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I really don't see why anyone would mention PA Works when it comes to top tier studios. Their animation work isn't that great, the finishing and composite is definitely not in the same league as the top studios, and they definitely don't have high quality consistency. A-1 Pictures stuff in the last year or so have far surpassed PA Work's average standard.
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Old 2012-07-10, 11:32   Link #35
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I really don't see why anyone would mention PA Works when it comes to top tier studios. Their animation work isn't that great, the finishing and composite is definitely not in the same league as the top studios, and they definitely don't have high quality consistency. A-1 Pictures stuff in the last year or so have far surpassed PA Work's average standard.
I have to roundly disagree about PA - I find their series to generally be among the most visually impressive around. They effectively co-produced Moribito, and I think True Tears and HanaIro are a couple of the most beautiful series to look at. Their animation might not be as fluid as KyoAni, but their backgrounds are consistently as stunning as anything in TV anime.
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Old 2012-07-10, 11:47   Link #36
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I have to roundly disagree about PA - I find their series to generally be among the most visually impressive around. They effectively co-produced Moribito, and I think True Tears and HanaIro are a couple of the most beautiful series to look at. Their animation might not be as fluid as KyoAni, but their backgrounds are consistently as stunning as anything in TV anime.
I'll really disagree about the backgrounds especially. I think that's one of the areas where PA Works really shows their weakness in standing up there with the top-tier digital looking studios today (KyoAni and Ufotable mainly). Their backgrounds are mostly 3D digital backgrounds, but generally lack the composition which makes them look really cohesive, especially when lighting is taken into account. This is extremely apparent in Angel Beats and Hanairo in particular. There are many episodes where some interiors and exteriors just looked totally bland.

Another thing to consider is that Ufotable and Kyoto Animation are really the only animation studios in Japan today who we can really say are fully representative of the shows they put out. No other studios I can think of qualify because they mostly operate on the traditional production model where the animation studio is generally just for animation. Which means the proper employees of the studio are mostly production management staff, in-between animators, and key animators. Everything else is contracted from freelancers or other studios specializing in those tasks (backgrounds, finishing, composite, etc).

Ufotable and Kyoto Animation on the other hand, are studios built from ground up with a brand new mentality towards animation production in Japan. They recruit fresh staff across every discipline every year and do pretty much all major tasks in-house. Staff are trained, and as they gain experience they are promoted. Episode directors, storyboarders, key animators, in-between animators, in-between check, finishing, art direction, backgrounds, digital effects, 3DCG, composite, editing, etc. Everything is led by actual employees in the studio. Even when they contract outside staff to help with the workload, it makes a huge difference when the actual process starts and ends within the studio itself.

/rant :-)
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Old 2012-07-10, 12:00   Link #37
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Are we discussing production philosophy, or the quality of the product? Two different conversations there.
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Old 2012-07-10, 12:07   Link #38
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Are we discussing production philosophy, or the quality of the product? Two different conversations there.
More like the product's quality !
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Old 2012-07-10, 12:20   Link #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Guardian Enzo View Post
Are we discussing production philosophy, or the quality of the product? Two different conversations there.
I thought we were discussing sales numbers.

Anyway I'd say it's more that studios like Kyoani and PA have a certain look to them. Like you can look at a show and pretty much immediately tell it's by them just by how it looks. If there's lots of hard wood floors, clear blue skies, pristine clean surroundings, and a lot of light filtering in use you can probably put a solid bet on it being either Kyoani or PA Works that's behind the show. In contrast frankly this looks very little like some other A-1 Pictures shows which historically had had a certain look to them as well (SAO imo fits in with that look). Does it mean it's going to lack in quality? Hard to say, because the two are hardly synonomous as you mentioned.

edit: Also when exactly did their become a universal list of the "top studios" when it comes to animation quality?

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Originally Posted by Pocari_Sweat View Post
It's no brainer that A-1 Pictures was the "winner studio" last year in terms of financial success having obtained 3 blockbuster sales in Anohana, Ao No Exorcist and Idolmaster as well as a bunch of mid-tier ones. Now, they seem to be going all out this year in terms of creativity. Good job A-1!
Errr they really aren't the only ones. Sunrise had Gundam UC, Horizon, Tiger & Bunny as well as a bunch of other fairly well received projects and rereleases for example, but since nobody ever pays any attention to or discusses their contributions to growing the industry I'm not surprised that hadn't come up yet. Toei did pretty well as always with One Piece, the launch of the new Precure and some other shows as well, but like Sunrise it seems like they are invisible outside their core fandom or something. I'd say the anime industry in general won last year as opposed to any specific studio, but I will also say that A-1 is probably the most improved studio in the past year or so. As Reckoner said they are starting to establish an identity and stand out more.

In general though I think for the first time in a while there might have been some actual growth in the anime industry and we're starting to see the results everywhere.

Last edited by Kaioshin Sama; 2012-07-10 at 13:38.
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Old 2012-07-10, 12:24   Link #40
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Are we discussing production philosophy, or the quality of the product? Two different conversations there.
How something is made affects the end result, there's no denying that. A more natural and effective production philosophy will result in a higher quality product if used in the right way every single time. Let me try to illustrate what I mean by the visual cohesiveness where I feel PA Works falls short. This is obviously not an exact comparison, but I think the similarity of the types of scenes make it an easy to understand one.





This is a scene from Tari Tari episode 1, showing the interior of a classroom during class hours.





This is a similar classroom scene from Hyouka episode 6.





And this is another classroom scene from Fate/Zero episode 10.


There are two aspects I want to talk about, first the general scene layout:

Now, there is nothing really -bad- about the Tari Tari scene. It looks normal. Pretty much on par with the average anime series where nothing looks particularly bad, the main props (message on the chalkboard, the gifts on the table) are well designed and look good, and everything else which fills up the space on the screen is generally inoffensive and not badly drawn. But that's just it, it doesn't do much beyond the base requirement.

On the other hand, in the other two scenes, you can see that there is a lot of subtle attention to minor details all over the screen to create a sense that everyone in the scene is actually living in that space and hence there isn't a lot of symmetry. The layouts are detailed and indicate clear signs of being inhabited by the characters. There are props which have nothing to do with the story or narrative, but are simply detail which creates a more believable scene. It looks like an arranged and staged environment but one which actually takes into consideration what reality would be like.


Finally the composition of the scene, including the lighting and colors:

In the Tari Tari scene, I think it's clear that there is a flat loot throughout. That's not to say there aren't shadows and lighting, but they're just minor touches which don't really render any real depth to the overall feel of the scene. Where else in the other two screens, there is clearly extra effort put into using the lighting to create a warmer and more comfortable and pleasant image. It is more pleasing to the eye, and feels more "right" when perceiving the environment.



So yeah, that's generally my main point when it comes to why I feel PA Works still has a lot to learn when it comes to digital use. But it really can't be helped in their case, which brings me back to my point about production process. PA Works, like most other animation studios, do not composite their own shows. They use T2 Studio, and they are largely at the mercy of the experience and expertise of another company when it comes to that aspect of the art form. But if they improve their own layouts and art direction, there's definitely still a lot of room for improvement.


Edit: In an attempt to get this discussion slightly more on topic, because I feel really bad about derailing this thread away from the original topic, I'll add an example from A-1 Pictures' recent Tsuritama.



This scene here is not very different from the Tari Tari scene at all, and shares similar lack of detail and a lot of symmetry. But, I really like this next scene...




Because it shows at the back of the classroom that all the students at least have different types of bags and again, there's a feeling of a natural sort of habitation in the environment, like I was saying earlier. It's these little touches which I think makes something go from "good" to "great". Not to mention, the art direction and color design in Tsuritama lends itself very well to a flatter lighting because the colors themselves serve as a form of brightness and contrast filter. It's really quite appealing.
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