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Old 2013-03-08, 13:37   Link #3201
teja208
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Yes, the way Ritz was building the story up to where even team like Achiga can overthrow Shiraitodai presents many flaws in storytelling. You know? I’m actually fine with covering up the surprise until late in the series, but what really kills the suspense is the fact that they are overdoing it. Anime original sequences is partially blamed for this. Here are some highlights:

- Achiga doing well against Bansei, but we never got to see what happened.
- Ep. 3 we have Shizu lost to Koromo, and only that part was shown, suggesting that Shizu is incapable of handling nation-class monsters.
- Quarterfinal match – Shizu poor defense made her struggled to reclaim second place.
- Training with Nagano team – we never saw Achiga win, more evidences that Nagano is infested with national-tier team and that Achiga sucks.

As you see here, there are pile of evidences that not only cover up Achiga’s true capabilities, but also make them look horribly weaker than they should, which ended up making their victory over Shiraitodai losing credibility.

Lesson: When building suspense, don’t ever attempt to cover it up with events or scenes that suggest the opposite.
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Old 2013-03-08, 13:39   Link #3202
tsunade666
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Originally Posted by MarkS00N View Post

I however will blame anime for not 25 episodes, for that is the required amount to make things work, at least I believe so...
I agree on this one. I felt that it needed to be longer than what is given. A longer series will give more development to the characters than being abruptly shove into you. Achiga series turn into something cheap near the end. Everyone keeps on having hax ability powers that strategy and skills be damned. I even felt Kyouko's pain from himematsu when his the normal girl playing against 3 monsters. Here hoping Shizu would be the normal girl that has manage to squeezed her way into the finals to make it more unpredictable but not. It turn she is also one of those ability type monsters. And for the lack of it the only thing I notice of her is her determination to never give up which was given on a shounen protagonist which Saki lacks.

If you tried to analyze it. Shizu is opposite of Saki. I tried to view Shizu as someone who had skills but so far..... well she never gave up that's the only thing worth remember of her. Which was solidify when she never loose hope when fighting Koromo. I never once think that she also has a hax mahjong power. Even with hints of fire on her eyes. I just view that as determination. And her lack of reaction to Saki which is opposite on Kuro and Harue gives another impression of her being a normal girl and not a monster girl. Usually the normal types can shrug of the feeling of the occult mystery (looking at nodochi) Though when the feeling has reach a certain peak like the level of Koromo. Everyone can manage to feel it even a slight of it but still it feels different from people who has their own right. Member of the same group a.k.a. monsters or ability users.

Even with subtle hints.... I view Shizu as a normal girl which was denied when her battle starts. But then again. I was not that much pissed about it. The development of someone having an imagine breaker where she manage to break the illusions of Awai is nice but I felt disappointed on how things happen to turn out into.
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Old 2013-03-08, 14:19   Link #3203
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I think one thing should be kept in mind about Shizu ... she is kind of like a wind up toy in a way, and I think it was the Achiga coach who realized this. For her to access her "national level monster" ability (or imagine breaker or whatever it can be called) you have to spend a lot of time "winding her up".

When she went to play against Koromo way back when she was doing nothing of the sort. So to me there is no contradiction whatever.

In fact, one of the things that makes someone a really good coach is being able to identify and cultivate the potential in those they are responsible for.

Whether or no one believes that someone like that could change so fast is another issue, but the possibility in and of itself makes perfect sense to me, and I am fine with it.
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Old 2013-03-08, 15:15   Link #3204
cedec0
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I found this site that has the full raws from Chapter 20 (in the correct order). The quality is decent too. (See http://niwakasaki.blog.fc2.com/blog-entry-64.html)

Here are some images that haven't been posted here yet:

Spoiler for Another Brocken spectre of Shizu:

Spoiler for Shizu cancels Ryuuka's power:

Spoiler for Shizu nearly cancels Himeko's power:

Spoiler for Shizu activating her power in the final round:

I also found this image fun.
Spoiler for Awai gets owned:
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Old 2013-03-08, 18:29   Link #3205
MarkS00N
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tsunade666 View Post
I agree on this one. I felt that it needed to be longer than what is given. A longer series will give more development to the characters than being abruptly shove into you. Achiga series turn into something cheap near the end. Everyone keeps on having hax ability powers that strategy and skills be damned. I even felt Kyouko's pain from himematsu when his the normal girl playing against 3 monsters. Here hoping Shizu would be the normal girl that has manage to squeezed her way into the finals to make it more unpredictable but not. It turn she is also one of those ability type monsters. And for the lack of it the only thing I notice of her is her determination to never give up which was given on a shounen protagonist which Saki lacks.

If you tried to analyze it. Shizu is opposite of Saki. I tried to view Shizu as someone who had skills but so far..... well she never gave up that's the only thing worth remember of her. Which was solidify when she never loose hope when fighting Koromo. I never once think that she also has a hax mahjong power. Even with hints of fire on her eyes. I just view that as determination. And her lack of reaction to Saki which is opposite on Kuro and Harue gives another impression of her being a normal girl and not a monster girl. Usually the normal types can shrug of the feeling of the occult mystery (looking at nodochi) Though when the feeling has reach a certain peak like the level of Koromo. Everyone can manage to feel it even a slight of it but still it feels different from people who has their own right. Member of the same group a.k.a. monsters or ability users.

Even with subtle hints.... I view Shizu as a normal girl which was denied when her battle starts. But then again. I was not that much pissed about it. The development of someone having an imagine breaker where she manage to break the illusions of Awai is nice but I felt disappointed on how things happen to turn out into.
Your sentences (that I highlighted) is exactly what I am talking about...
They hid it too long, people begin to think that Shizu has no hax power while there are element of the original to show someone has ability shown...
If did right, flame eye mean flame-like ability... NOP! It means NEVA GIVE UP!
If did right, Shizu never seen second fight, might possibly mean something fishy... NOP! It means NEVA GIVE UP!
etc. NOP! It means NEVA GIVE UP!

This what the series show (at least what people see as what the series show) and gives false expectation...
Then the twist turn in to a TWEESSTT!!!

Well, just hoping it will ease everyone pain as hopefully you'll read the series in different perspective...
I did since last chapter and it make the spoiler good so far...
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Old 2013-03-08, 18:50   Link #3206
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Achiga won because the enemy team on this block is unbalanced and relies on ace players too much

the thing is that Achiga players are equal or better than their non-aces

This puts Achiga's chance at 50 50

throw in a wild horse like Shizu and the odds become more favorable
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Old 2013-03-08, 19:22   Link #3207
tsunade666
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Originally Posted by MarkS00N View Post
Your sentences (that I highlighted) is exactly what I am talking about...
They hid it too long, people begin to think that Shizu has no hax power while there are element of the original to show someone has ability shown...
If did right, flame eye mean flame-like ability... NOP! It means NEVA GIVE UP!
If did right, Shizu never seen second fight, might possibly mean something fishy... NOP! It means NEVA GIVE UP!
etc. NOP! It means NEVA GIVE UP!
but that's her facial expression you know the type that shows GUTS! and even her determination when fighting Koromo and her will to win in semi-quarter finals which leads to them making it second

That's why I said that Shizu is opposite of Saki. Saki hasn't shown that much will power at all and she has all smiles that say "let's enjoy the game" a complete different goal of Shizu that wants to meet Nodoka at the finals (even though she is captain and won't be her opponent >_> like Saki and Teru)

Shizu screams Shounen protagonist being straight forward type that those hints are being read as face value and thus when shit hit the fans we all go WTF!!!!!

Silly as it can be. Her being a monster/monster slayer wasn't portrayed well at all and gave a different impression on her and also her character too helps solidifies this fake impression on her or maybe its not fake but its not completely real.
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Old 2013-03-08, 19:49   Link #3208
Peanutbutter
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Read a comment and felt it was quite true.

Perhaps starting the Achiga anime series just after a few chapters was released was too soon. The author must have had to rush her story through in order to meet the anime episode deadlines.

In contrast, Saki's original series began after a few volumes were released. A lot of time was spent on building up Ryuumonbuchi and Koromo, and giving characterization to a lot of characters, which the anime is able to produce really well later on. We had lots of flashbacks, lots of yuris and lots of interaction.

Only the captains' match in the provincial round had to be rushed through and that was still done rather well. And the anime, on its own, did a very good provincial individuals.

Ultimately, where Achiga fails, in comparing to the original series, was the decision to give it an anime. This ruins storytelling to a large extent, leading to the debate we are having now on Shizu.
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Old 2013-03-09, 01:10   Link #3209
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So I decided to go back and reread the chapters of Achiga starting from beginning, to try and see if I noticed anything that I may not have noticed the first time, and I made a few interesting observations.

-On Shizu vs Koromo, when we first see the results of the match, it's Shizu in 'despair' after having received a thrashing from Koromo and her Haitei Raoyues. Of course, then Shizu recovers right away and asks to continue the match. But on a more specific note, it's mentioned that she got hit with three Haitei Raoyues from Koromo. However, later during Koromo's conversation with Saki, Koromo mentions that she was planning on using it five times, but only managed three. So in other words, after the brief side cut of Shizu recovering from her despair and challenging Koromo to the second round, Koromo did not manage a single Haitei Raoyue.

-After the first training against all the 2nd place finishers, Harue mentions the only single person they couldn't take a single game off of was Arawaka Kei, the 2nd place in individuals last year. Which means that somebody on Achiga took at least one game off of Koromo. This is probably connected to the previous point.

-Somewhat flavorful, but when team Achiga first accidentally encounters Saki, Harue, Kuro, and then a little bit later Shizu all of a sudden feel Saki's 'monster' aura. The very last page of that chapter is a shot of Shizu suddenly turning around and looking at Saki walking away after sensing the 'monster' aura, and the text at the bottom says "The strong can feel when something is wrong." Although that's somewhat flavorful.

-We never actually see Achiga play/practice against the Nagano's teams, although if memory serves me right the anime shows the Nagano's team winning pretty handily.

-After their practice against the super good individuals only players of Arawaka Kei and her friends, I think Shizu shows the 'FIRE IN THE EYES' for the first time (someone correct me if I'm wrong?). Something I've noticed is that alot of supernatural ability users in this series, often have some sort of effect in their eye whether it be fire or lightning or something of the sort.

-Continuing from that point, after their reunion with Nodaka and Shizu's vow to meet them in the finals, as they walk away, Shizu's eye does the whole lightning strike thing which has been seen before in serious-mode Saki and Koromo

-This one is about Sumire actually, more along the lines when she said they weren't going to go all-out and were more scouting out the other teams. In a way, she's like the opposite of Awai in her match. She starts off using her ability to sort of test the other players, but after Yuu dodges her ability twice due to her tell and makes her pay, rather than continue forcing it, Sumire decides to back off, make a mental reminder to pay more attention to Achiga, and play the rest of the match without using her special ability. After all, it messed up twice, so there was no reason to keep on spamming it and give other teams a higher chance of figuring out how to counter it as well. However, going back to the idea of 'holding back', something I realized was that in theory, she could have continued to spam those piercing arrows on Izumi if she simply wanted points. Who knows, repeated attacks might even have been able to drop Izume to zero and end the entire round but it posed too much a risk of what may be an already compromised ability which could hurt them in the finals, so she decided not to. However, once it's the finals, there's no reason for her to not spam those arrows at the lowest player until they go under.
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Old 2013-03-09, 03:12   Link #3210
Re Imperiall
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i think the reason why the manga was rushed not is to following the main manga pace. i see if they doesn't want to give another side spoiler. before semifinal the team was asked if they want to know kiyosumi match. but they preffer not know about it (as the main chapter was saki still in match with jindai, toyone, and kyoko). and in main manga in the morning after side a semifinal. they doesn't talk about it at all.

for achiga series it self i see the difference beetwen quarter final and semifinal. in quarter final after fall behind in point with senriyama. all other school doesn't even bother with them. and just fight eath other for 2nd position. but in semininal senriyama and shindouji want to pursue and taking down shiraitodai here.

i see it's unfair to say awai is weak just because she lost to shizu, not like koromo match that we can say kanna is just a (koromo) victim and yumi just for complement. himeko and ryuuka has their own occult here. awai was to focused to himeko and keep chalengin her key. but i agree if we say she very arrogant here. and she really lucky to get tsumo in last round. because if she roned shizu or himeko (that always get roned by her double richi) shiraitodai will not advace. in last round i think she want to get top position with sanbaiman or maybe yakuman (with uradura), but it turn out she not get any uradora and just get haneman.


For shizu, when she become calm (in 2 last chapter), as she is she not shizu that we know before, she made a face and expresion that we ever see in her before. she doesn't even become calm in quarter final. we know that there must be something here.

i think why ritz and igarashi keep her power hiden is beacuse they wan't achiga still a darkhorse than a powerhorse from begining. but they also need to show why achiga is woth to become kiyosumi rival in final.

anyway it's interesting to finished the match not with turn over the score in last round like in saki vs koromo, but trolling awai in entire south round. it's quite lol when i found out when shizu has already calculated the score so she can keep advance even get awai haneman. and maybe shizu let himeko get yakuman is just to bringging down awai, because himeko point still will behind her, and the yakuman will give big blow to awai since awai was the dealer i that round.

Last edited by Re Imperiall; 2013-03-09 at 03:55.
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Old 2013-03-09, 08:21   Link #3211
morli
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Originally Posted by Re Imperiall View Post
anyway it's interesting to finished the match not with turn over the score in last round like in saki vs koromo, but trolling awai in entire south round. it's quite lol when i found out when shizu has already calculated the score so she can keep advance even get awai haneman. and maybe shizu let himeko get yakuman is just to bringging down awai, because himeko point still will behind her, and the yakuman will give big blow to awai since awai was the dealer i that round.
Wait, wait, wait... so Shizu can use her ability at will? I thought her ability active at random depending on dices number. How does her ability work anyway?
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Old 2013-03-09, 08:25   Link #3212
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Awai lost 18000 points??? So much for being hyped up -____-.
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Old 2013-03-09, 08:30   Link #3213
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Originally Posted by morli View Post
Wait, wait, wait... so Shizu can use her ability at will? I thought her ability active at random depending on dices number. How does her ability work anyway?
I only saw spoiler pages but I think none of pages in this chapter explain Shizu ability. Maybe Ritz want to keep it secret until the final round in the main manga.

But let's wait for translation for accurate infomation.

EDIT: maybe this page explains something
http://i.imgur.com/7a9pasI.jpg
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Last edited by Marina2; 2013-03-09 at 09:06.
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Old 2013-03-09, 10:34   Link #3214
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There are actually some info from 4chan...
Probably just prediction but it is interesting still...

http://imgur.com/kMvitIB
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Old 2013-03-09, 12:20   Link #3215
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I just wanted to point somethings out to all those who think Shiraitodai didn't live up to their hype.

Let's start with Sumire, she had to deal with Yoshiko constantly playing with cheap crap hands. Meaning Sumire didn't have the time she needed to take aim properly because Yoshiko kept playing with cheap/fast hands, meaning she got sealed.

With Takami in her match Ako and Sera were constantly tsumoing, meaning she was going to lose points. And she wasn't able to win much, because you have Ako who plays with cheap/fast hands, and Sera who got the 3rd year bonus of reaching tenpai faster.

Seiko was deliberately being aimed at by Hiroko, who kept exploiting Seiko's discard habits. She also had to deal with Arata's psychological trick of making you think she can only with pinzu waits. And also Mairu just being a more skilled player then her.

Lastly with Awai she was having to deal with Himeko and Ryuuka's hacking. Then because she wasn't paying attention to Shizu, Shizu was able to negate her ability. And with all this Awai was still dominating the whole match

So effectively I'd say that Shiraitodai did live up to the hype, just that 4 of the players got sealed up, while Teru just had limiters on her. Also its a little hard to dominate, when everyone is aiming for you, because your the champion and are in the lead.

And if you think about Achiga winning the semi-finals all that surprising, remember the whole 'revenge ten years in the making', and the ones who pulled of the revenge were Arata and Shizu, who seemed to actually be the most dangerous players in Achiga. Meaning that Achiga's winning was foreshadowed continuously

Also people who keep thinking Ako is the most powerful player in Achiga, your wrong she's the most skilled, meaning its perfectly plausible for both Shizu and Arata to be more powerful then her.
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Old 2013-03-09, 12:34   Link #3216
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It's really just simple human nature that we will form our first impressions about something and we're naturally mentally resistant to changing that impression for the most part. We can be faced with logical arguments supporting an opposite view and while we may concede that there are valid points to it, on a mental level we will still resist changing our overall opinion.

Anyone who works customer service for a living will see that every day, if you interact with your customers they will form their impression of you in the first 10 seconds and to change that impression you will have to work many times harder. For some it will just not happen regardless of what you will do.

Our first introduction to Shiratodai hailed them as the unstoppable super monsters. We formed that opinion and engraved it into our minds. It was a long time before we ever saw them in action and when we did we were shown admittedly strong but hardly invincible. They can be beat with careful planning and pure skill. Which is the same of ANY player in the series.

But we had formed our first impression of Shiratodai and in our minds Shiratodai=Super monsters and when we were shown this was an unreasonable expectation then the cries of betrayal began. We were presented argument after logical argument but for some that just meant digging in their heels and having to be dragged reluctantly into acceptance that Shiratodai just simply isn't infallible. The others schools are national finalists for a reason, they got here because they were the best in their regions. They have the skills of their own to fight on this stage and it's not that insane to think that some of them can match or even surpass individual players on Shiratodai.

As Harue once said towards the beginning of the story the true battle power of the team is not in the individual but as the group as a whole. Some of Shiratodai was faced with bad matchups and players who's skills trumped their own skill set.

And lets face it, if Shiratodai HAD utterly torn the competition apart from start to finish that would of been utterly boring. That would of made the school that qualified with them, Achiga or not, completely irrelevant. Sure they would of been in the finals but they got their butts kicked! They have no chance, and then they would of been written off as just a placeholder.

All I'm saying is ease up on those grips on first impressions and try to have an open flexible mind about this, the story will be a lot easier to enjoy that way. Ask yourself, isn't a competitive finals/semi finals more interesting then just a one sided rapefest?
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Old 2013-03-09, 13:03   Link #3217
Sol Falling
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I don't particularly care about Shiraitodai not dominating, I never expected much from them aside from Teru, to a lesser degree Awai, and then maybe Sumire. Regardless of their skill level, the only plot-important character (as in, with regards to Kiyosumi's story) is Teru so as long as Teru's credibility is maintained that's all that matters (of course, it's a shame that none of the other Shiraitodai members are attractive/interesting enough to be particularly likeable, but Saki has tons of characters so that's less of a problem).

My dissatisfaction with the Achiga ending lies solely with the fact that Achiga, as the main characters, never managed to prove interesting enough to make me happy that they're going to the finals (or, happy that they won the semi-finals). I still like Senriyama better in almost every way due to Ryuuka and (especially) Toki. Sera and Ako kind of cancel each other out for me, but I don't like any other character in Achiga. So since Shizu's win can't really be called anything but arbitrary authorial plot armour I don't need to bother with any sort of logical argument aside from "I don't like Achiga."
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Old 2013-03-09, 13:08   Link #3218
Marina2
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About Shiratodai, I have pointed out several pages ago that when manga said Shiratodai is the "strongest" it doesn't have to mean that Shiratodai power level is 10 and other teams are about just 1-5. The gap of power from Shiratodai and other school maybe only like 1-2.

If anything, Ritz may want to show us that Shiratodai is not invincible to other teams, even if it is not Kiyosumi, other schools still have a chance to defeat them.
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Old 2013-03-09, 13:08   Link #3219
The Green One
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Originally Posted by Sol Falling View Post
I don't particularly care about Shiraitodai not dominating, I never expected much from them aside from Teru, to a lesser degree Awai, and then maybe Sumire. Regardless of their skill level, the only plot-important character (as in, with regards to Kiyosumi's story) is Teru so as long as Teru's credibility is maintained that's all that matters (of course, it's a shame that none of the other Shiraitodai members are attractive/interesting enough to be particularly likeable, but Saki has tons of characters so that's less of a problem).

My dissatisfaction with the Achiga ending lies solely with the fact that Achiga, as the main characters, never managed to prove interesting enough to make me happy that they're going to the finals (or, happy that they won the semi-finals). I still like Senriyama better in almost every way due to Ryuuka and (especially) Toki. Sera and Ako kind of cancel each other out for me, but I don't like any other character in Achiga. So since Shizu's win can't really be called anything but arbitrary authorial plot armour I don't need to bother with any sort of logical argument aside from "I don't like Achiga."
So you just outright admit that only your personal opinion matters and nothing else. Which is perfectly fine for you but irrelevant to anyone else. But hey that's fine, our opinion is something we're all entitled to, just don't expect everyone to take it seriously if there's no logic to it beyond your own personal feelings.
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Old 2013-03-09, 13:51   Link #3220
Sol Falling
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Haha. Not having to justify yourself is one of the luxuries of being in the majority, though. Here on this forum there hasn't been as much of a shitstorm about Achiga winning, and ultimately it doesn't really matter because as far as the main plot (again, Kiyosumi's story) Shiratodai is still in the tournament. However, there are a lot of people who are simply not very happy with Achiga winning and the way this side-story ended, and the fans are just going to have to accept that. "Logic" has nothing to do with it. Sure, plenty of people like to think of themselves as logical or rational creatures, but fundamentally "logic" has never been the sort of reason why people would watch Saki (or anime in general) anyway.
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