26 of 26 episodes seen
Beneath the romantics, action, and tragedy in Xam'd lies a simple message: the importance of identity, which is perhaps one's most treasured possession. Memories, friendships, relationships, and the power of a name are all components tied into one's identity, which Xam'd examines closely.
Story - 7
This was, unfortunately, the most acknowledged fatal flaw in Xam'd that prevented this artwork from being a masterpiece. While it was original, creative, and innovative, the writers made the plot overly complex, creating too many complicated technicalities, making the story difficult to follow and comprehend. However, the general concepts of the plot were understandable, and only mechanical details tripped the story's flow. The setting was brilliantly laid out; the militaristic society in which the story took place was well defined. The cultural and racial conflicts and discrimination in Xam'd were especially a plus to the structure of the plot, aiding in the characterization of the situations. This was one of the main catalysts for the drama in Xam'd, which was definitely one of its greatest features, realistic but in a fictional universe. Overall, the plot was envisioned to be a smooth progression of exciting events, but the theory was not executed as perfectly as planned, leading to its own entanglement.
Artwork - 9
The animation was smooth, the colors were silkily vivid, and the overall image of Xam'd is magnificent. There is little to critique in the artwork of Xam'd, as it was definitely not an eyesore. Although not as overly detailed in art as Guilty Crown, nor as originally creative as Bakemonogatari, Xam'd was free of major flaws in the animation, while keeping the setting detailed and pleasing to the eye, constituting "great" artwork.
Sound - 10
The most fitting part of Xam'd is the brilliant sound. The OST is one of the most perfectly matched for an anime. Original and upbeat opening really catches the attention of any viewer. The orchestral background music was well applied to the setting and drama of the story. Music in Xam'd eases the viewer and is soothingly calming; stringed instruments were great to incorporate into the anime. Bravo to whichever genius decided on the soundtrack of Xam'd.
Character - 9
While the story line was lacking a fine, strong foundation, the characters were a dynamic factor in the construction of Xam'd. The strength of the structure of the characters was all about the realistic embodiment of each individual, despite the fact that the story took place in an extremely fictional setting. Especially appealing were the dialogues between all the characters, smooth and natural. The conversations were not at all awkward, and they broadened the characters' relationships beyond appearance and race. The character development was strong, and even though it focused on multiple individuals and groups, Xam'd succeeded in giving insight to the viewers on the characters. Not only did they emphasize the pasts and mindsets of all the characters to the point where sympathy can be held for any character (good or "evil"), but they also developed the relationships between the many groups of characters, all connecting to the main, Takehara Akiyuki. Although he is the AVERAGE high school student, there could not have been a more dynamic substitute for him; the relations he had with Benikawa's mail crew were another well developed aspect of Xam'd. His charismatic nature leads into the plot development and progression so well, especially as the main factor of this anime is identity. The characters' connections of Xam'd can be visualized as a base, Akiyuki, branching off to a few segments, which branch off to even more characters, which all the relationships were shed light upon. If Xam'd had been a more character-driven plot, there would have been much greater success. The ending, however, was still made magnificent because of the work that had been put into the characters.
Enjoyment - 9
What could make a story more exciting than its plot? Drama. It creates suspense and keeps people at the edge of their seats, unable to stop themselves from marathonning the entire series in one sitting. In fact, the enjoyment of Xam'd is probably what causes people (such as myself) to rewatch the series multiple times in hopes of understanding the plot more. The drama, the tensions, and the relationships are what allows us to overlook the flaws and simply enjoy the anime itself.
Overall - 9
Despite the nagging feeling that there is something unsettling or unknown about the plot, Xam'd was very enjoyable. The characters are very likable and the setting was creative, with good art and a very strong OST to back it up. I would highly recommend this to anyone who likes any genre of anime, because Xam'd has a lot of content packed into it. read more
17 of 26 episodes seen
Mirai Nikki is an extremely excellent anime that does a fantastic job of incorporating the "Battle Royale" atmosphere and creating the perfect yandere. The storyline was complex and well-structured, almost flawless. It does well as a psychological thriller, weaving intense situations and suspenseful moments into an intricate pattern.
It is interesting how the director and character designer of Shuffle! were able to string Esuno Sakae's manga into an exceptional storyline. The story itself may sound a bit odd at first (diaries that predict one's future events), but its compelling components such as the prize, becoming a god to replace Deus Ex Machina, the absolute god of time, definitely justify the method of portraying the story in an uncommon manner. With diary holders trying to kill each other in greed for power, the content of Mirai Nikki is dark; much blood and gore is spilled in the survival game. To a person who enjoys "kill or be killed" style plots or psychological thrillers, such as myself, Mirai Nikki would be very appealing because of the intense survival game and dramatic focus on the character's mental state rather than the physical world.
Nothing much needs to be said about the artwork. Although the artwork and animation was good, without anything to complain about, it was not as extravagant as Guilty Crown and not as creative as Bakemonogatari. The animation is violent with much blood and gore spilled; it generally carries a Gothic ambiance of which is fitting for the dark story of Mirai Nikki.
The first opening was fantastic, perfectly fitting the Mirai Nikki atmosphere. There is nothing wrong with the second opening, but I did not think it resonated as well with the anime as the first opening had done. But overall, the OST was great without many complaints.
The character development of Mirai Nikki is simply perfect. Gasai Yuno is the perfect yandere without a doubt, holding up an innocent middle-school girl exterior. Amano Yukiteru is portrayed as a weak-willed and timid boy, with a voice actress that accurately represents his personality. Yuno is developed into a psychopathic stalker who becomes obsessed with Yukiteru, stopping at nothing to preserve their "relationship." Yukiteru relies on her protection to stay alive in Deus Ex Machina's game. Yuno is a yandere; Yukiteru is a coward. There is absolutely no flaw in the characters' structure and development in Mirai Nikki.
With people constantly murdering, the little comic relief is enough to release the viewer from the intense buildup, such as the after-credits shorts with Mur-Mur. Generally, the action scenes are exciting but bloody. To some, it may even be nauseating. However, it is definitely enjoyable to one who enjoys these kinds of battles.
I would recommend this to anyone who likes survival games, psychological thrillers, or yandere girls as it is a great anime. But if you want to watch cute shoujo romances, this is definitely one of the farthest things from it. read more