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Old 2008-04-08, 19:53   Link #61
WanderingKnight
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The main problem with GITS SAC was the inconsistency of character designs. Motoko looked like two completely different persons in some episodes. Key animation was good, though, so that lessened the impact.
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Old 2008-04-08, 20:33   Link #62
Shinndou
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After having watched the first episode, I pretty much share the same impressions stated by Mr.Prophet, especially regarding the technology that's supposed be part of the world this serie takes place in. From what I've seen so far it's still a bit unclear to tell where we can draw the line that separates real world from the supposedly cyber-world/space that seems to be connected through the ocean.

And indeed I was surprised about the supposedly main character:
Spoiler for episode 1:
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Old 2008-04-09, 07:25   Link #63
wao
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I, for one, approve of girls with large thighs. Bring them on.


Also, my Japanese is not good enough to understand everything that's going on but afaik, the diver (Masamichi Haru) in the first episode went into a coma for 50 years (?!) before waking up and realising the world has changed. His old friend, Kushima (the guy who's in charge of the organisation thingamajig they showed) is looking young thanks to an artificial body. No other way an 82-year-old would look like that. But the first part is definitely in 2012 while the second part is in 2061, some years after Haru woke up. (You'd understand why the first episode is called Urashima Drive if you know the tale of Urashima Taro)

Anyway, I'm going to go rewatch this now... I love how the official site shows young Masamichi Haru with his age (81)... If I have any problem with the character designs, it's just that the faces are a bit too similar-looking too, I suppose. Not nearly as bad as many other anime, but I guess it stands out more when they don't have any ridiculous design elements to differentiate them.

Edit: I forgot to mention I love that scene where that guy's arm got "ripped" - I actually cringed while watching it. I like it when anime can still bring out that sort of reaction.
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Last edited by wao; 2008-04-09 at 07:56.
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Old 2008-04-09, 08:18   Link #64
Haohmaru
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That scene was great, but also very wrong. Dude that got his arm almost ripped off, acted like nothing happened afterwards. A normal person would've screamed like crazy from the pain. At least show that he has some kind of pain.

He was like: aaaah my arm is going to rip off.

5 seconds later he's like: mondai nai *insert smile with teeth shining*.
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Old 2008-04-09, 08:57   Link #65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wao View Post
Edit: I forgot to mention I love that scene where that guy's arm got "ripped" - I actually cringed while watching it. I like it when anime can still bring out that sort of reaction.
Indeed...I kinda freaked out screaming that it is going to drop off...it's still giving me nightmares

I didn't know what to expect from this first ep but it was interesting. Dam confusing about where things are going but it kept my attention. I didn't realise that there was a time skip until the guy actually showed his chest. Wow...I do feel sorry for him.

(Though now he is some super "ghost" ).

Highlight for me was the fight scene. Kick ass in it's simplest
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Old 2008-04-09, 08:59   Link #66
MrProphet
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So, coming back to this, did anyone understand what exactly was real and what wasn't? By "real" I mean interactions on a physical plane, rathar than cyberspace.

At first I fought that everything was virtual, including the ship scene and the scene at the sanatorium, since they dove directly from this plane into cyberspace and because of those "effects" that the ocean was making.

But then I thought that maybe the ship and the sanatorium were real and the ocean was real, but the cyberspace is geohacked INTO the ocean.

Think Dennou Coil. Think about Augmented Reality. The ocean of water is there. But the cyberspace infrastructure is connected to the physical location of the ocean, so when you jack up into the Meta-Real Network and you take a dive into the ocean, you start traversing the Metal. You might say that that the ocean is geotagged by different parts of Metal's infrastructure, so when you move from one part of the ocean, you also move from one part of the network.

I don't really understand why anyone would design such a geohacked network aside from purely aesthetic principles. The symbolism surely is interesting, but the practicality is somewhat doubtful.

So, what do you think? Is the place where Haru lives real or virtual? And if it is real, how exactly does it connect to cyberspace in the ocean?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Augmented_reality
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ubiquitous_computing
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Old 2008-04-09, 10:50   Link #67
wao
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Yeah, you are kind of right about that. I at least expected him to feel it stinging or something, the sea's got salt and all that... unless he's so ridiculously strong-willed that his concentration on the present moment overpowered physical sensations.

Anyway, the general gist of the episode is pretty understandable so here's an unnecessarily long description of the first episode just for my own reference (I sure can't be assed to do it after this, anyway)

Spoiler for Actually I should just do this somewhere else, ignore me:



From teh beginning I was under the impression that there are physical man-made islands and structures jutting into the sea, but the whole sea has become some sort of mesh that is both the sea and a "sea of memories" or thoughts or whatever. Don't ask me how it works, probably some magical particle or something but I don't get anything harder than Dennou Coil.
Everybody's brains have been sort of connected to the virtual network underneath though (they've been... digitized so... I guess there's some kind of direct digital link, perhaps the brains have got chips in them or something. Anyway that's why many patients were in pain during the blackout, since the digital signal got scrambled or something (???) but don't ask me why Haru could dive...)
By nature of its design Meta-Real looks and feels like a sea, hence the parallel between Haru as a physical and mental diver.
However, Holon being physically sent into the sea is something I don't quite get yet.

I think if I just take the whole Meta-Real thing as one big metaphor and leave it at that I'll be fine, dammit. Seriously, I don't see any practical reason why one would use the sea to do this, so I'll just take it as another Automagical world and not think about the implications too seriously (until they push it in our faces with the story or something).

Anyway, I think Souta's going to be some vague equivalent to Togusa in this show, and I look forward to what happens to him. Yay.

Final edit: here, here's a shoddy translation of the backdrop description from the main site - didn't intend to read it, and I'm guessing this will all get explained later in the show (a show that relies too much on The Manual is weak) but if it helps anyone... actually, what's the bet someone else has already done this better? -_-

Spoiler for saving space:


...I'm going to sleep, this doesn't make any sense.
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Last edited by wao; 2008-04-09 at 11:16.
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Old 2008-04-09, 11:20   Link #68
apr
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I drowned in the techno-babble, but at least Android Chick is hot. And plump.

...

Does not compute.

MrProphet: How is this better produced than Soul Eater? Surely its music and animation rivals this.
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Old 2008-04-09, 18:36   Link #69
MrProphet
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Anyone caught the composers name? The website is mum on the issue.

Quote:
Originally Posted by apr View Post
MrProphet: How is this better produced than Soul Eater? Surely its music and animation rivals this.
Mmmm, I wouldn't exactly say so. BONES did credible work, but nothing particularily complex. The source material simply didn't call for it.

Animation-wise I'd call them equal, but RD #1 had major work done on background images and digital post-processing, not to mention the score. Perhaps Macross F is the closest rival, especially with this new re-cut broadcast version.
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Old 2008-04-09, 19:22   Link #70
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I only got about 60% of the dialogue raw, but understood the gist of it.

The show is nice, I was worried about it being to close to feel to GITS, but no worries anymore. Now just gotta wait for sub.

Animation was very good, as expected.

And I admit I enjoy the "broad in the beam" female designs quite a lot
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Old 2008-04-09, 19:25   Link #71
wao
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According to the Japanese wiki it's Yoshihisa Hirano (Ouran) and Hideki Taniuchi (otogizoushi).

Personally I enjoyed this 1st ep more than SOul Eater's but I'd put Soul Eater's production level way above this first episode. That had a lot more effort put into the animation - post-processing isn't everything. Bones could've easily had realistic backgrounds but it wouldn't have fit the show as well.
On 1st ep animation grounds alone Soul Eater definitely wins over Macross F and this... but that's certainly not everything, either. This had more instances of "human" acting where Soul Eater was chock full of action (not easy to do at all)
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Old 2008-04-09, 19:39   Link #72
apr
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Originally Posted by MrProphet View Post
Anyone caught the composers name? The website is mum on the issue.
The episode credits confirm what wao says, with the Hirano+Taniuchi combo. They also seem to have worked together on Death Note. Personally I didn't like it much, because it seemed so, er, un-Japanese.

From the trailer I saw, Toshokan Sensou's animation looked to be out of this world as well, particularly a doujo scene with an amazing throw. Guess we'll find out tomorrow.
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Old 2008-04-09, 20:06   Link #73
Haohmaru
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Toshokan Sesnou does look very cool indeed. The art & animation are just amazing IMO. Much better than RD's IMO. Is it really only 12 episodes though
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Old 2008-04-09, 20:26   Link #74
MrProphet
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apr View Post
Personally I didn't like it much, because it seemed so, er, un-Japanese.
I like the symphonic orchestration bits at the end of the episode where the wind is rising and Minamo is running through the corridors. If other parts of the score would be similar, I'd be quite happy.

As long as they don't try emulating Kawai's chorals and Kanno's world-music style, as had been suggested to me they should (live up to the repertoire of those two, I mean), this should be sauitable, even memorable. 8)

BTW, was I the only one who thought about Azumanga Daioh when I heard Minamo's nickname? 8)
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Old 2008-04-09, 20:53   Link #75
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I don't really think budget means everything when it comes to how well-animated or good looking determined show is... nor do I see this as particularly impressive either . Soul Eater came across as the bigger surprise to me; I found the mouth gestures especially satisfying. I suppose I'm really biased to how the level of visual creativity involved here is more in line with an artisan than with an artist.
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Old 2008-04-09, 21:13   Link #76
MrProphet
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Key animation is only a single part of the production.

Before I knew anything about anime production, I thought it was quite simple: douga -> genga -> photography -> dubbing -> off to the TV-station. Your basic Otaku-no-video approach.

Well, turns out there are lots more people involved somewhere between in-betweening and the rest. Compositing, camera mapping, digital processing, really neat sound-editing techniques. There are job descriptions at Production I.G that sound like technical mumbo-jumbo to you and me, and yet they are integral parts of producing an anime.

So when I mentioned "the best produced series", I think many here assumed I meant stricktly animation and I didn't. I meant the whole load from penning the embroglio to putting really small finishing touches on depth-of-field SFX. I really thought that Real Drive looked a lot more impressive as a boxed product than Soul Eater, flashy animation nonwithstanding.

No disrespect to BONES, of course, I love them, but I simply don't think that in this particular instance they've put together a bigger production than the I.G guys. Perhaps one with more flashiness, but, judging by episode 1, not a more thorough.

So, before SE fans descend on me, let me give a last forlorn YAY to less commercialized BONES future projects! 8)
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Old 2008-04-09, 21:27   Link #77
7Th
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I'm not a particularly big Soul Eater fan, but I was not talking about mere key animation when I said I prefer that show's look to this. I know a good deal about how important camera mapping and post-processing and camera work and such “technical mumbo-jumbo” are to the overall look of an animated show yet I stand by the statement of calling Real Drive’s visual style totally unimpressive. Serviceable? Yes. Excellent? Yes. Worth of note beyond the technical level? Of course not. Like I said, they are the work of an artisan rather the work of an artist.

Quote:
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So, before SE fans descend on me, let me give a last forlorn YAY to less commercialized BONES future projects! 8)
I say the same about most IG projects. 8)
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Old 2008-04-09, 22:59   Link #78
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It is true, you dont need a huge budget to have good drawings or design.

Still, it does help. It's funny how anime has a smidgen of the budgets that american shows have yet shows like this and Soul Eater are infinetly more interesting to watch for visuals. But need I digress.

Bring on the next ep with more world building and thick boned ladies!
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Old 2008-04-10, 10:30   Link #79
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrProphet View Post
So, coming back to this, did anyone understand what exactly was real and what wasn't? By "real" I mean interactions on a physical plane, rathar than cyberspace.

At first I fought that everything was virtual, including the ship scene and the scene at the sanatorium, since they dove directly from this plane into cyberspace and because of those "effects" that the ocean was making.

But then I thought that maybe the ship and the sanatorium were real and the ocean was real, but the cyberspace is geohacked INTO the ocean.

Think Dennou Coil. Think about Augmented Reality. The ocean of water is there. But the cyberspace infrastructure is connected to the physical location of the ocean, so when you jack up into the Meta-Real Network and you take a dive into the ocean, you start traversing the Metal. You might say that that the ocean is geotagged by different parts of Metal's infrastructure, so when you move from one part of the ocean, you also move from one part of the network.

I don't really understand why anyone would design such a geohacked network aside from purely aesthetic principles. The symbolism surely is interesting, but the practicality is somewhat doubtful.

So, what do you think? Is the place where Haru lives real or virtual? And if it is real, how exactly does it connect to cyberspace in the ocean?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Augmented_reality
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ubiquitous_computing
I think what makes it a bit hard for us viewers to be able to tell how this technology works, with the information we could only get so far from this first episode, is that unlike in Dennou Coil, where the Augmented Reality is achieved by wearing the Dennou Glasses, in this case it seems like there's no personal device that allows the user to see and "feel" both real and virtual world at the same time. For instance the first scene is rather emblematic: Haru is diving in the sea, and supposedly we assume that he's wearing and using "normal" equipment, so how's it possible that suddenly, as he goes furtherly down, he seems to be experiencing that phenomenon and visions from the virtual world/cyberpsace? Not only that, but even his body got physically damaged as well. My assumption is that they found a way to create a cyberspace that's directly connected to the ocean and almost "fused with it", probably using some sort of waves, or brain-waves that carry sophisticated digital information, (we'll probably get to know more about this in the following episodes) and maybe these supposed "waves" or system that achieves it, is also able to have an influence not only on people and their minds (since we get to know that their consciences are contained into "bubbles", although I question if we're talking about real world's bubble, or cyberpsace ones), but on the environment as well, causing these weird atmospherical phenomenons such as the sea "burning", or like that supposed electro-magnetic storm. Oh well, this is getting pretty confusing, I don't even know if my post made any sense.
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Old 2008-04-10, 11:01   Link #80
MrProphet
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shinndou View Post
For instance the first scene is rather emblematic: Haru is diving in the sea, and supposedly we assume that he's wearing and using "normal" equipment, so how's it possible that suddenly, as he goes furtherly down, he seems to be experiencing that phenomenon and visions from the virtual world/cyberpsace?
Oh, that's easy. He is wearning diving goggles. They must have been his interface into the Network.

As for the future, well, everyone has cyberbrain, and many have prosthetics, so they can access the Metal on the spot.

Holon is wearing a diving cable that feeds the information to Haru (since he can't dive on his own), but I don't really know yet if the cable is always necessary when accessing the undersea levels of Metal. I'd assume that yes. Also, they'd need some breathing equipment. But, I guess, this is going too deep too soon. No nead to aimlessly speculate.

As for the scar... Must be some kind of psychosomatic reaction to intense emotions in those personality bubbles. We'll see later. I mean, this is the #1 mystery right now, what happened to Haru, I am sure they'll explore it, so no need to rush on our own.
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