English: Little Busters!
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Oct 6, 2012 to Apr 6, 2013
24 min. per episode
PG-13 - Teens 13 or older
L represents licensing company
Score: 7.671 (scored by 30500 users)
1 indicates a weighted score
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SynopsisWhen tragedy struck Riki Naoe as a child, he was rescued from grief over his parents' deaths when four other kids "recruited" him for their group—the "Little Busters." Now in high school, Riki and the other Busters are still fast friends, and though their vision of being heroes for justice may have faded, they'd still do anything for each other. Which is why Riki is now on TWO special missions. The not so secret one: recruiting new members so the Busters can form a baseball team. Preferably FEMALE recruits, as the current dude/babe ratio is an inconvenient 4 to 1. The OTHER mission, though... That's the strange one. Because Riki and Rin, the group's singular girl, are receiving odd messages, delivered by cats, concerning the existence of a "secret world" and assigning them tasks they have to complete. Were their youthful dreams of being crusaders not so fanciful after all? Or is there something even more vital at stake? Between steeling his courage to talk to girls, dealing with his own narcolepsy and facing his feelings concerning Rin, Riki may just need the strength of a superhero to solve the ultimate mystery of the Little Busters!
(Source: Sentai Filmworks)
Related AnimeAdaptation: Little Busters!, Little Busters! End of Refrain
Side story: Little Busters!: Sekai no Saitou wa Ore ga Mamoru!
Sequel: Little Busters!: Refrain
Characters & Voice Actors
Over the past decade, visual novel studio 'Key' has seen much success for their work on titles such as Kanon, Clannad and Air. If you have watched or read any of these series, you will likely be familiar with Jun Maeda's distinctive form of dramatic storytelling.
Do not expect another Clannad: After Story. You will not find it here.
At first glance, there is one startling difference in Key's latest adaptation. It is not animated by Kyoto Animation, the studio responsible for handling the majority of Key adaptations. Instead, the esteemed and beloved (not really) J.C. Staff is at the helm. For many this is a name that will undoubtedly be a cause for concern. In Little Busters, it is.
The story follows the misadventures of Riki and his four childhood friends. Set during the leader Kyousuke's final year in high school, the group of friends decide to make something of their remaining youth- not by overtly rebelling, but by practicing and playing baseball together. They cannot form a team with only five members though, which is why Riki and Rin are set to recruit more people from their school. Preferably females, as Rin is the only young lady in the group.
Little Busters' cast of characters is its strongest trait. No— not because they are especially well-written or unique, but because they are endearing- because they are entertaining. It isn't easy to make a group of anime characters feel like genuine friends with one another, but Little Busters manages to achieve this feat with its wonderful group dynamic. Even the later members contribute to the show in a significant and believable way. The characters truly do make the lighthearted segments a joy to watch.
Being part comedy, it's a good thing that the jokes are often fresh and clever. Of particular note is Masato. If you remember Sunohara from Clannad, he is a bit like that. Masato and all his muscular glory (and utter lack of brain cells) are the cause for many jokes. Usually at his expense. And usually met with a kick to the face from Rin.
It's a shame, since any appeal the show has is frequently pushed aside in favour of cringeworthy melodrama. The individual character routes were not very good in the visual novel and they are most certainly not any good here either. It would be one thing if these arcs were merely mediocre, but with J.C. Staff's lack of directorial talent they are made absolutely dreadful. The omnibus format also does little to help the rushed pacing, resulting in a format that feels highly formulaic and superfluous. One of the girls has troubles, Riki helps them to overcome it, one or two episodes of comedy follow— repeat, repeat. Thankfully the lighthearted segments are so entertaining, as otherwise you would probably detest each character by the end of their route. It is that bad at times.
The two worst offenders are Mio's and Haruka's routes. In Mio's route, the viewer is treated with illogical and contradictory character actions further complimented by a hilariously contrived deception on the writer's part. Plotholes? Everywhere. And it does not even attempt to answer them with anything besides equivocation. The climax could maybe be explained if the characters were taking psychedelic drugs at the time, but looking at it from a realistic perspective it does not make any sense whatsoever. Watching Utena may be less confusing.
Haruka's route will also make you want to scream in frustration. Her tragic backstory is implausible (why the hell were the people taking care of her not convicted of abuse?) and the motivations of the antagonist, Kanata, are silly at best. The rest of the route is comprised of more cheap plot twists and embarrassingly cliche melodrama. Heck, there's even a scene where the weather changes from sunshine to storm as soon as Haruka starts crying. How much more cheesy can you get? Little Busters seems to experiment with the limits.
Things do improve, though. After a decent start and two terrible arcs, the last third of the story provides a satisfying dénouement showing how each of the characters have grown over the course of the series. The last episode in particular is quite nice, with the long-awaited baseball game being played in high spirits. Some might argue that this improvement is too little too late. They might be right.
One area where Little Busters does not disappoint is with its soundtrack. There may not be anything on the same level of "Dango Kazoku" to mess with your emotions, but the soundtrack as a whole is solid and surprisingly memorable. Then again, it's pretty hard to make mistakes when you are deriving almost all music from the source material.
Little Busters' endearing characters are complimented by a highly talented cast of seiyuu. Yui Horie provides a convincing role for a male character (though does little to make Riki any less bland) while Masato's seiyuu does a wonderful job at delivering the comedy. Rin and Kud on the other hand will probably kill your heart from how adorable they sound.
There isn't much to praise about the art, but it certainly isn't bad. Just average. Just middling. For a TV anime it is passable, but when comparing it to previous Key adaptations you will definitely notice a significant drop in quality. Off-model faces are frequent and many scenes are reduced to panning and 'talking heads': devoid of any animation besides the character's mouth flapping. For an adaptation of one of the most successful visual novels, you would normally expect the artwork to at least be above-average. Not here.
As an adaptation, it is worth mentioning how it compares to the source material. Is it a bad adaptation? It is. If you want to experience the story as it is intended, it would be in your best interests to give the visual novel a read instead. On its own merits and as a condensed version of the story, however, J.C. Staff's adaptation is merely passable. It doesn't completely butcher the story but with the rushed pacing, poor characterization (especially with regards to Riki), lackluster art and incomplete story— most of the charm that made the visual novel so beloved is nonexistent here. At least there's more cute Rin scenes, though! Maybe that is the one and only good thing.
Little Busters will not be winning any awards for its writing or production qualities, but when taken as an entertaining comedy with likable characters, it is at least worth a watch. Putting aside the expectations, you will certainly find some enjoyment in Key's latest animated venture.
Hopefully, too, J.C. Staff won't let us down too much in the sequel. I can think of few things that would be more disastrous. read more
A lot of people seem to blatantly hate it for the fact that it doesn't follow the original source material or won't even try watch it based on other people's hate towards it or because it's adapted by J.C. Staff and not traditionally KyoAni.
I can't blame you guys, even I was surprised. But you see, I think J.C. Staff did quite a good job at adapting something that's partially romance from each heroine to something that's following it's true message. This does not mean that it won't have any romance, It's just a slightly different interpretation to focus on the plot. I'm sure for those of you who played the VN, remembered the words that popped up during the opening sequence:
- What "Adolescence" do you have?
- Do you remember "Childhood"? and most importantly
"The irreplaceable one existed here" or for those who played the expansion it also adds the lines "This will remind you that you have to recollect 'Adolescence' " these words while they don't exist in the anime's opening, oddly play an important role as opposed to it's VN counterpart where it's partial towards it (unless you want to count Refrain, which in this case, it fits the category.)
In the anime, it sacrifices the romance but focuses on friendship. now mind you, that's the one element that displeases fans of it's source material. As Riki meets all the members of the Little Busters, they progress towards personal problems, misunderstandings, and a lot heartbreak. That's where Adolescence comes in and how do they come to a closer bond with each other? with recollections of unfortunate childhood pasts, doubtful thoughts, they form a strong friendship, henceforth "The irreplaceable one existed here."
Key makes the most excellent composed music that fits each route, whether depending on the character who shows up or staring into the background immersed a long each track.
Each character is lively and connects so well that you wouldn't tell much of a difference compared to it's VN. with speculation, you would be surprised and think "Ah, so THAT'S how this one scene works." and the way that particular character who's in it expresses their emotions quite well.
I am strongly mutual about it's animation. It's kind of bland, but tolerable and during the beginning you might feel an "Angel Beats!" vibe going on. the environment is nothing short of awe-inspiring and bright.
It was a fun ride and yet it's not quite over is it? I personally connected with the characters so well beyond their struggles and how they resolve them. It might take you quite awhile to get a hold of things, but before you know it you'll start to cherish and create a wonderful memory of them. All you need is patience and a set mind of things which will all be worth it in the end. We're only just getting started.
It reflects and reminds you on life, It's about friendship and all heart.
Similar animation style, both involving a mystery surrounding a high school. Similar character archetypes. Really funny moments of randomness, but can be very poignant at times, too.
-Jun Maeda is the writer of Little Busters! that also wrote Angel Beats, Air, Clannad, and parts of Kanon
-The setting is similar but the story's concept goes on a different direction. If you love Angel beats, you will love this anime (because of all these strong similarities).
The writer of both series is the same, Jun Maeda. If you liked the story of Angel beats the history of Little Busters is very similar.
I have the same feelings from watching both.
Both series involves the same writer, Jun Maeda.
LB! and Angel Beats! has a similar feeling that involves supernatural themes set in a lighthearted mood with its cast of characters. Both series also involves a group of friends doing various activities and having fun.
Both series has similar concepts and the main male protagonist has similar personalities.
Both series' soundtrack also has a smooth melody as well as a lighthearted OP song.
Both series has comedy, drama, and also some emotions as various episodes progresses.
Similar feel between both animes and same writers!
I just realized that Angel Beats! and Little Busters! are way more similar to each other than for example to Clannad. Of course it would be a huge spoiler to tell what makes them so similar
Both animes are about a group of friends enjoying the time they spend together, they show an alike story line. They are both Key works and they have the same beautiful art.
- In both anime they will be going on useless missions
- The plot is slightly similar Without going into further details
- A lot of MAIN character in both series
- Takes place in school
- Tear jerkers throughout both series
I don't see how this relates to Clannad in any way.
IMO, Little Busters and Angel Beats are very similar in its themes and they can easily be close to relate if it was understood in a better angle. Even if they have different story.
Both were written by Jun Maeda .. the reason why, without going into detail, resemble the concepts of the series: 3
its almost the same stories and painful stories are also almost same and the creator might be the same
-about a group of students doing some activity
Both have insanely hilarious "battles" or "missions" with a side of full fledged emotion. Beautiful visuals and created by the same person, Jun Maeda.
Beautiful emotional storyline with moments to laugh and ... to cry.
Both of the plots of these animes are basically almost the same concept, apart from the fact that in Angel Beats they are all in the afterworld. Just like Otonashi sticks with a whole group, Naoe Riki does as well. Both of these animes go deep into the past of most of the characters, and that's what makes them so similar.
For anyone who likes the KEY Visual Works series. (Air TV, Kanon, Clannad, Angel Beats!, Little Busters!) Watch!
If you like a good drama or anime with deep emotions, Little Busters & Angel Beats are for you.
-The MC in both series helps the other cast members to overcome certain problems in their life.
-The use of emotion is used excellently in both series.
-Each of the animes has a leader that guides the group and helps it grow.
-The MC of each animes has certain problems of his own he must overcome with the help of his/her friends.
-Both can be dramatic and sad but also comedic at times with both being done extremely well.
- Both are sometimes funny, and sometimes sad; and have a great cast of characters that never get boring
- Both have dungeons (LB! in season 3)
- Both main characters must solve their friend's troubles
- Both original works are made by the same people
They both were done by Key and Sentai Filmworks. They start the same way, but plots develop diffrently. While Angel Beats was rushed and had few holes in the plot, Little Busters is long and it has few mistakes. They are both fun and heartbreaking. If you love Angel Beats, you're going to love Little Busters.
-Jun Maeda is the writer of Little Busters! that also wrote Clannad, Air, Angel Beats and parts of Kanon
-Both are adaptions from visual novels created by Key
-Both animes's setting/story goes by an omnibus format, and have small arcs for each heroine that doesn't diverge from the central plot of the story (with the setting intact)
-- Both are Key's heart-felt Visual Novel adaptations
-- Same character design style
-- Puts importance on family and friendship
-- Both have deep Romance and Drama
-- Tear Jerkers
Clannad and Little Busters are both astounding works written by Jun Maeda and adapted from visual novels created by Key. Thus, the similarities in style and presentation between the two are enormous.
They draws you in with it's beautiful animation, stunning soundtrack, and heart wrenching storylines. Both share this magical world created of similiar weaving stories that captivate the heart and leave you wanting more.
While they are both harem anime by definition, they are done in a way that can be taken seriously; neither series is loaded with perversion or fanservice. Instead, both of the series focus on developing the characters through their interaction in the present as well as flashbacks from the past. They make you walk each step with them as you feel their emotions and listen to their thoughts.
Clannad and Little Busters are two sides of a coin. Not only do they both have the same target audience, enjoying one series consequently results in the enjoyment of the other.
Little Busters and Clannad were both written by Key, namely Jun Maeda for the second seasons of each show. They both originate as similar style VNs, that share a common development characters through primarily slice of life comedy before more dramatic events later on. They both originate from visual novels and have some overlapping storytelling traits due to the original format.
Also, Little Busters invokes a theme of friendship, while Clannad is more oriented towards a theme of family. They're both nice slice of life shows that shouldn't be hastily judged before getting to the end of the second season of each.
Both present a dramatic life story for the main character and for those
who surrounded by him, Both are adaptions from visual novels created by Key,
both tell a story of a wonderful friendship with all her difficulties,
both present a deep and emotional stories from a difference points of view,
in both series the anime present with a small arcs for each heroine from the story but still keeping the main story line/piot of both of the man and women main characters, both show the world from a different point of view and present a special yet unokwn mystery power who have some weird control over her
normal world, both present a huge characters setting with a diffrent personality and ambitions.....................
Little Busters follows a similar layout to how Clannad's story unfolds. They both follow a boy in high school and the main character develops relationships with many different people, specifically girls. Throughout each show, the girls eventually open up to our main character, and show their tragic backstories, or similar events that are troubling them in the present time. Our main character uses his friendship with others to help bring the troubled friend into a new perspective of life, helping them to be freed from their despair. Since both animes are based off the visual novels created by Key, you can expect similar dramatic events that tear at your emotions, yet both have enough comedy to balance out the tragic events. Both shows are tied for my favorite romance/drama series, and its to be expected as Key has a great way of creating characters that are pretty much impossible to hate. Definitely give both a watch, and you will see what kind of similarities both shows share.
- Both are sometimes funny, and sometimes sad
- Both main characters must solve their friend's troubles
- Both original works are made by the same people
Both serve as the prequel to a much bigger, better sequel that is almost a must see if you want to fully enjoy these anime. Moreover, both are tear inducing KEY anime.
Ok heres an obvious one. Both involve a main male character making friends with, and then trying to help a female character throughout individual arcs. They both offer plenty of drama, but Clannad offers a romance element. Obviously they are both adapted from Key visual novels. However the most important similarity is that they are prequels for both of their second seasons. If you enjoyed on you'll definitely enjoy the other.
These anime are created by Jun Maeda, who also wrote other popular dramatic anime. Both have the same feelings or search to give the same.These anime are formed around "arc" for each character. Both anime share around 5 girls. Both have good character design, who is enjoyable. The two anime are dramatic are formed around death and tragedy. Clannad is more "life" than slice of life.
Opening Theme"Little Busters! ~TV animation ver.~" by Rita
Ending Theme#1: "Alicemagic ~TV animation ver.~" by Rita (eps 1-5, 7-13, 15-17, 19-22, 24-25)
#2: "Alicemagic" by Rita (eps 6, 18)
#3: "Ame nochi Hare (雨のち晴れ)" by Rita (eps 14, 23)
#4: "Little Busters! ~TV animation ver.~" by Rita (ep 26)
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