Move over Re:Creators, Fate/Apocrypha is here to show you how a real TRAINWRECK is made.
The worst anime of the year so far, and I say that both as an incredibly mad fanboy of fate who hates this mockery of a series he loves, but also as a man who finds shows this utterly poor in every way to be outright offensive. There are obviously some mixed opinions on this show in this review section, but unlike the other reviews I will now proceed to explain to you what the ACTUAL problem with this show is.
Let’s get started with the most contentious point, the animation. No,
this is not good animation, I’m sorry, but if you think its good animation I suggest you go watch a show with actually good animation. This show came out in 2017 you guys, and it’s using all the same tricks and tactics to avoid animating as much as possible as the original Fate anime from Studio Deen back in 2006.
Are there a large amount of frames in this animation at times? Sure, sometimes. But every. Single. Frame. Is drawn horribly. Characters in fights manage to be off model almost the entire time. “B-But Rahk, those are just in-between frames of fast moving action scenes!” No, they’re not, they all stay on screen far too long, showing how badly drawn they are in full view. Also, here’s a secret, in-between frames have to be… in between something! A fight scene of all inbetween frames ends up looking like a mess where the characters are literally melting, which is what we get here.
Outside of the animation quality itself, the directing in the animation is also terrible. Shots cut too fast, too slow, angles change at complete random with no flow. For god’s sake, in an early episode a shot starts at an isometric angle from behind characters walking from behind them on the left, only to cut five times and end up behind them on the right facing up. That might not sound like a problem to you, but it breaks… let’s see, all the rules of visual storytelling? In fight scenes, the camera never stops moving in A-1 pictures patented “give the viewer a headache” style of fight choreography, as seen in such shows as Aldnoah Zero and Birdy the Mighty Decode. Never giving the viewer a chance to orientate themselves to the scene in a hope you can’t see how bad everything looks. Characters won’t stop spinning, why won’t they stop spinning in fights the other Fate anime don’t do this why is this one doing it?! It doesn’t look cool or make them more badass it makes them look like stupid cosplayers making a fan film.
But you must be thinking “surely at least they can draw still shots of characters talking well?”, ha, hahahahahahaa, ahahahahahahahaha! You fools, did you think they wasted any of their precious effort on scenes of characters not moving? Think again. An entire scene goes by with an entire FOUR frames of animation, characters faces not even drawn on so they didn’t have to animate mouth flaps. I’ve seen defense of that scene as not having faces give it a horror atmosphere, but such a naive defense shows a complete lack of understanding of the show they’re watching, there wasn’t anything remotely creepy or scary about that scene except the horror of watching a 25 second scene made out of 4 still frames.
Three paragraphs on the animation? Time to expose the truth about the SOUND DESIGN. I was, honestly, shocked to learn the sound director of this show also worked on Unlimited Blade Works, as that show suffers none of the following issues. Was he drunk when he came into work for this show, what went wrong? In short, the sound design was crap, but let’s get into why.
It’s so LOUD, the sound effects are tuned for max headphone blowout. In an attempt to make everything more epic and impactful, they made all the sound effects sound like your speakers are breaking. Sounds are over compressed with far too much bass, so they all sound like somebody taking a wet fart into a recording microphone from walmart. I’m not sure about you but the majestic, epic image of a fight between two legendary heroes doesn’t sound like this. When sounds aren’t doing this they have less impact than a wet tissue does when thrown by a small child. The music is all horrible, hardly ever fitting the scene. Songs start too soon, end too soon, and just don’t work. And good god, who greenlit that opening song? It was possibly one of the worst songs I’ve ever head in my life, I shudder just thinking about it.
You might have noticed I haven’t mentioned anything about the story or characters yet, to which I will respond with: Apocrypha has a story? We’re seven episodes in and there has been a lot of setup, a lot of setup for events. You might think I’m crazy for saying this, but events happening is not a story. The story you see, connects the events together and makes you care about the events. Without a story to make you care, you’re basically watching a bunch of character designs fight for reasons that don’t concern you.
The story should be a struggle of two factions trying to best the other while the members of each fight within their own ranks for the right to win the holy grail war. But somewhere along the line everybody in this war forgot to bring their motivations with them and the majority of the cast is here entirely to look ‘cool’ and die later.
In Fate/Zero, the FIRST thing you learn about each Master is what they want out of fighting in the holy grail war. In apocrypha after 7 episodes we’ve learned… the characters names? Sure that one girl wants to fix her legs, but that’s literally the only one. In a plot that should have 14 characters on each faction at LEAST, we know the motivation of one character. And don’t even say Darnic’s motivation is known, he has the default “win cause that’s what magi do” motivation, it literally doesn’t count.
Characters… let’s see, is there anything to say about these bland, soggy crackers that make up the cast?
I’m actually struggling to come up with things to even complain about here, because every character is such a big nothing in terms of characterization. They’re one note at best, and zero note at worst (sieg)
Sieg… Sieg, Sieg, Sieg Sieg SiegSiegSiegSiegSiegSiegSiegSiegSiegSiegSiegSieg SIEG!
I hate Sieg like Shiki Tohno hates chairs, every aspect wrong with Apocrypha’s character writing is personified in Sieg. He is a character with the most uninteresting character design, no personality, zero motivation for anything… he is awful. His existence actively makes the show worse, every scene with him is automatically ruined because of how terrible he is. So I’m sure glad he was the secret main character of the series who slowly takes over the plot! Thanks!
Just… just stop. There are so many great anime out there, this show is like a cheap drive-through hamburger, you think you want it but after eating it you regret it. I’m so extremely angry that this show is even remotely popular, just the same as I get mad when I hear somebody say how great The Big Bang Theory is. The more you support shows like this, the more the industry thinks that they can get away with this utterly subpar garbage.
Is Fate/Apocrypha the worst anime I’ve ever watched? No, not really. But it is the show that’s made me the most angry, even more than Psycho-Pass 2. In a time where such highly refined productions as Bones’s Boku no Hero Academia and Madhouse’s One Punch Man, Apocrypha manages to feel utterly devoid of passion, of soul.
It doesn’t feel like a production the staff loves, but just another job, like most all of A-1’s shows really.
You deserve better, Fate deserves better, than this cheap cash in that harbors none of the original spirit of the series because it knows it’ll sell if they put a new Saber on the cover.
I'm not an Ufotable fan but A-1 is doing a lot of things wrong. By the way, I'm a "secondary" of the Fate universe and not a true fan of the series. I won't spoil anything, but there was actually a mistake with Jeanne that you can point out during Jeanne's death. (It's not a spoiler, you can clearly see it and almost everybody knows how she died.) Now after this little introduction let's move on the main problem and flaws of this shows!
There is actually a quite huge problem with the plot which makes me feel bad when watching it. It's an alternative
route from Fate/Zero but it clearly shows that a lot of things went wrong. There is 14 servants and a lot of characters to the point that some of them are there just for filling the gap and have no development at all. The only character development you have is with Jeanne, but they're missing Shirou and other great characters and I really mean despite the fact the show did only air 7 ep. With the first episode that is airing each week, the anime feel already too SLOW, and the battles are resulting in a sort of "random" chains because of this aspect.
Also, this anime contained character like Kuro no Assassin (No spoiler) which is a servant I especially don't like because of its idiotic design. It's just a loli without cloth and even if we don't know the true gender of the character I don't think that a little girl would be fit for the role. There was at least an explanation for it to happen but for me, the reason is clearly not enough to considerate the character itself. There are some genderbend servants in this show to the point it becomes almost like a comedy and it doesn't make sense apart from the fact "People like genderbend, let add more of them inside the series without any senses!" The story of F/Apocrypha makes me cringe because of it.
I don't blame the genderbend of Saber during Fate/Zero or Stay Night because of the fact that the genderbend surprise was quite entertaining and also surprising which made it quite good. However, the more the fate series is introducing genderbend and trap less great this feeling of surprise is becoming to the point when you see a girl servant you started thinking "Is it genderbend?"
Only one of the great point of the anime even if it's not that great. The animations are somewhat acceptable but honestly, the sounds don't match well with each impact which makes it quite laughable sometime along the huge colorful flash they're putting everywhere which make the understatement of a fight almost impossible. For example, I can take the fight between the two Sabers at the beginning even if it's for the future: A total mess! It's like both servants we're teleporting and using magical powers instead of a great swordfight... I don't say I didn't understand what did happen but my sights were clearly hesitating!
The opening and the ending aren't that exceptional which could have been something extremely powerful. Why? The opening doesn't match the visuals at all. The further we go toward the opening less great it becomes until the end of it is just plain boring to watch because of the matching that went away. The music becomes much faster at the end but the visuals are just showing a lot of servants walking through stairs and others slow scenes... Wow. They could have made it way better because the music was great which is extremely sad. Skipping is the only way for me.
The sound in many fights is a mess but the OP and ED music are great which save the score of it. Also, the ambience theme is surprinsingly nicely and entertaining to listen.
Like I said, character development is poor and for me, it's a pillar to follow no matter what is the anime. I need to make bonds with the character that are on screen otherwise I won't remember them and don't care about their feelings. If I can receive hate or love toward a character it means the development was successful. But when I'm watching Apocrypha and a character, I'm like "Oh, it's him..." No reaction from me which shows my disappointment.
I will also talk about Astolfo which is the perfect representation of TRAP fan service. It's just a plain boring and act likes a stupid character which is made to look and act like a lady while looking cute, and here go the viewers saying "It's a boy guy !" which makes the watchers desperate to love him. This character is just boring to watch for me. I can't understand why people are hyped from a trap which is just a boy cross-dressing like a girl and have no character development at all. When I'm searching on why people like him, it's mostly because of his true gender and his way of acting.
The licking scene with Astolfo's master was also just a pure fan service moment without any need.
I can also talk about the MC, Sieg... Wait, the MC? Maybe the side characters would fit more for him. He is just boring to watch and don't give the vibes of the main character! Saber of Red's duo is even more interesting, to be honest.
Well, despite my hate there is still some great moment to watch and some music worth to be heard like the OP and some ambient theme that happened during some flashbacks and the music at the episode 1 which gave me... Hope. it won't be a lie to say that I was highly disappointed soon after. But not that great nor extremely interesting. Just average but my dissapointment is growing more and more...
And here I go, I was almost sure about that. This Fate adaptation, FOR NOW, is mediocre and I would have preferred another Fate route to be animated like Strange/Fake, Extra or something else. Fate/Apocrypha wasn't my taste to start with but A-1 shouldn't have worked on a Fate route that is considered one or maybe the worst of the whole Fate series which result in something bad unless they would have totally change the story from its original source. Why I'm putting a 1 on it? Because of its flaws. Maybe I'm just being extremely harsh toward it but the numbers of flaws and mistakes that i pointed out before made this overall note and I don't need to explain it further. Just because I have noted some others categories like the art and sound more than 5 doesn't mean I find the anime a disaster overall.
Putting a 1 on an anime is harsh but that what it deserves, at least for me. A mistake that is just driving the anime industry deeper down which makes me sad.
But still, you can still watch if you're a true fate fan and you will probably enjoy it. But for me, that's just a huge NO.
Fate/Apocrypha has taught me two important things:
1) Gender is a confusing issue in the Fate universe (and in the real world as of late)
2) Astolfo is best girl...I mean guy...I mean trap!
I cannot but say that I was absolutely enamored with the Fate franchise after watching Zero, and continued to feel so (to some degree) with Unlimited Bladeworks. Although, when I first heard that a fate show was going to be animated by a studio other than Ufotable I was a bit skeptical because I wasn't really sure what to expect, and to add to that I hadn't
heard the best of things from Apocrypha to begin with from "veteran" fans of the series (people who actually played the visual novels) as they told me that it happened to be the worst adaptation of the series. So was it really that bad? I don't think so.
Plot and characters:
The setting occurs in a parallel world to the Fate/stay night series where a "Great" holy grail war is occurring, after the grail itself had been stolen for some years. So what we have are two factions (red and black) fighting to gain control over an omnipotent device that grants wish(s), then that war will be followed by a "civil war" between the members of the faction that actually wins. The masters and servants of that side will tough it out so that 1 pair (master and servant) ends up winning. Well, that is what was have been told in the first episode anyway. The story itself is not really "heavy" thus far and has yet to really develop, and I think it will take some time to do so because of the sheer number of characters and events which are occurring simultaneously, and is the reason why I opted to merge the sections regarding the plot and the characters, because from what has been implied so far is that, similar to the other Fate series the story will revolve around the characters rather than the events themselves. It was interesting to see for the first time a composition of 14 pairs of masters and servants rather than a typical seven because it meant that I get to some more "cool" powers and noble phantasms. However, the issue of having too much of a good thing actually became perhaps somewhat "bad", and that is seen by most of the people who review the series; as the aspect of having a massive cast being presented involves actually keeping up with all of them, or so I thought. Now I sorta am used to exploring a large cast from previous Fate adaptations (not as big as this of course but big nonetheless), which is why I am "digesting" it so far. Though I must admit, even though I am not really feeling any empathy towards any of the characters thus far because none have been "Fleshed out" just yet and a big question mark remains over the motives of most; especially that many of the servants and masters seem to be acting in a rather illogical way. But nonetheless, the large cast has not really bothered me too much, though it has given me a rather clear message; which is that many "are just there". Meaning that a lot of the characters will either not be explored, are there just for fan service perhaps ( the loli assassin seems to fit that part) or will end up dying soon down the road, which is fine but I do hope they begin the "culling" soon.
The animations are pretty good for the series. Yes, I know that they are not as good as what Ufotable presents, but good either way. I did not expect another unlimited budget works anyways. Although I must admit the fan service did catch me by surprise, I do realize that the Fate novels were (or are) an "adult game", but Ufotable managed to downplay any implications that it actually is. I am not saying I am against fanservice, but it seems attad "forced" here.
The overall music playing in the background when the series is running is fine I guess since I did not really notice it much, which rather means that it was not too bad or good. However, I did not like the opening for the show, I listened to it the first two times then began skipping it, but the ending is fine.
I think that this category is all that matters when watching a show really. An anime could be the most brilliant piece of art out there, but if I didn't like it, it wouldn't mean anything to me. So am I enjoying the series? Hell yea. I mean sure I know I am not watching a masterpiece, but then again I just came for the action and so far it has delivered.
I will update this review as the series progresses, though as it stands I can recommend this anime for people who just want to some "popcorn" time, because I think most would say that it is rather enjoyable and entertaining.
Fate/Apocrypha is an alternate world line for the Fate/Stay Night series, the difference being the aftermath of the Third Holy Grail War. There are now 15 Servants total, one neutral and Seven on two sides fighting over the holy grail. What I really like about Fate Apocrypha is that for newcomers to the Fate series, you don't really have to know the entirety of Stay Night to understand the premise and the story. Personally, I think this story is not very well done but definitely an interesting watch: Generic MC(Sieg, but has a pretty
interesting power) is a pretty big factor in the story that made me less appreciative of it. If you are interested in seeing a Great Holy Grail War(More than 7 servants) done right, go read Fate/Strange Fake. Gil makes an appearance in that too. Story = 4
Although I do miss UFOTABLE doing Fate Adaptations, I do think A-1 Pictures is doing a decent/great job. The Art isn't as crisp as Zero and UBW, but good as a whole still. Art = 7
Having a show with many different important characters have downsides, including the ability to develop them all equally and well. This is clear in the Apocrypha Adaptation, although I think with time they'll be able to improve this part. As of episode 10, only "main" characters are well developed in personalities, and I feel like the rest haven't received much attention and just a mere meat shield in the war. Characters=6
Personally I really like the music, especially Egoist's OP. To further demonstrate my love for the OP I even bought the Eiyuu Unmei no Uta Album. Some may not agree with me on this matter, and I understand as this OP was one of Egoist's not very good songs.
Enjoyment? Definitely a ten for me. I have been a follower in the Fate series for a long time now, and being able to see something other than skirmishes(like Stay Night and UBW) has got me really excited and made the show really enjoyable.
I had a review up here before from episode 9 but it is now out of date and I feel it was a bit too rambly and ranty. To complain about many parts of this show I might dabble into extremely light spoilers but I mean extremely light and vague. I won't give you anything specific, name characters, events or incidents as best I can so you get the gist of the problem without
A bloody mess, you don't really get what's going on, events are poorly explained ("anything can happen" is an actual line). The latest episode if you've seen it is
a great example of this as the series jumps the shark when I didn't think it could've found anything to one up itself and do it again. Most events feel like a shark-jumping moment so the anime can try and live up to ufotable's work but instead it comes across as insignificant and poorly executed in such quantity and always super far-fetched.
Basically, every significant moment feels far-fetched and stupid given no explanation besides "anything can happen". It is a shamble of events added just because it seemed cool.
This because it's cool attitude extends to the characters too as every single one is mega OP just because they felt like it. Imagine how boring Jojo would be if everyone had GER or Dragonball if every character was as strong as Goku. Actions lose significance since characters no longer feel human or vulnerable. Of course I mainly mean servants here, for the best example compare Lancer of Red to Lancer from Fate/Zero or Saber of Red to Arturia.
The problem here isn't the actual art or animation as much as it is the design and direction although the budget cutting for fights hurts me a lot of the time.
The animation on its own is a meh 5/10 but it loses 2 points (me being generous even though it doesn't seem it) for 2 things
Character design, an absolute mess. Characters are either bland or over designed but somehow both in Siegfried's case. Saber of Red is literally just the same look as Arturia so that doesn't count and ruler looks super similar too. The two worst designs are Siegfried for being overdesigned AND bland looking like he was ripped from a sub-par MMO while the other one I can't get into but they are a loli that is way too scantily clad to think they were added for anything more than pedophiles since they have so far done near to nothing.
Secondly, direction. The actual direction during fight scenes is god awful. With the exception of a couple fights, most of them are cut in such a way and move at such speeds that you can't tell what's going on in the worst way. Think of a fight scene you really like and think about how easily you can follow the action and understand the character's attacks and positions. Fate/Apocrypha is super unclear in comparison. This ties into the issue of every character being needlessly strong so they can make everything "feel epic" as mentioned in story. Character's attacks are only so unclear and ridiculously paced because it is cheaper to do (less frames for faster movements) and because they thought it would be oh so cool.
Basically fights just feel like they want to be FateBall Z or something with the budget cutting and speed. With some better angles you might be able to tell what is going on a bit more.
My other issue is the lack of willingness to show people absolutely bloodied and destroyed in a way that really dances around blood a lot and makes fights feel insignificant except a few moments. If someone gets slashed with a sword they should bleed, that is all I shall say. Really kills the punch when they get up with those anime bruises that just make them look a little grubby.
The animation has moments where it is pretty good albeit a bit bland that is ruined by poor design and direction.
Also, just need to tack on the fact that the backgrounds are boring. Didn't stand out to me even once so think of that whatever you want. They aren't bad, but they are nothing more than backgrounds at any points.
Also the settings start to get very boring but some may place more weight on that than others.
Note: This score may be going up, episode 10 I feel was better animated although the budget cutting with the most significant fight was awful. Would be 3/10 if episode 10 didn't exist.
Music and sounds are pretty good if a bit generic. I was a little harsh in my last review about sound since the show in general left a bitter taste in my mouth but I have to say the music is good. Opening is absolutely killer, most of the music is pretty good although repeated a little too much for my liking.
Sound also has a few moments where it isn't synced too well and it can get a bit too bassy/loud at points to the degree it sounds kinda lazy.
No complaints on sound besides the music having moments it can be a bit repetitive, the music isn't exceptional enough to push it above a 7 and the sounds being kinda bland and having a few moments where they are kinda bad. Overall I would call the music and sound the best part of the show by far.
That 7 I mentioned would have been within reach if the sword sounds were a bit better (and the ED was good), they aren't good. They sound way too light and gentle sometimes compared to a lot of other sounds.
Another generous score, the characters are awful. They are all bland, generic and boring. The 'main character' is a more bland copy of Shirou, a speech from UBW gets copied, almost every character is just a bland cliche with no characterisation since there are so many of them that they just can't make more than a couple interesting characters since they spread themselves so thin.
Saber of Red and her master have pretty good synergy though and play off each other pretty well. That is the only saving grace. Every other character is boring as all hell since their entire character can be done in under 10 words.
2 good characters in a show with this many characters isn't great, 3 if you include Rider of Black since he is kind of ok as a character but not exceptional (you at least understand his goals and personality even if they aren't too interesting)
Enjoyment: 4/10 for most, 6/10 if you don't think too much
I want to hate this show more but I can't do it fairly. The animation and sound really have moments where they are pretty good and some scenes I would genuinely call great but the characters and story are such a mess. Some moments I really struggle through watching while others are enjoyable.
Any enjoyment you get out of this show you can get better elsewhere is kind of the problem but it still has its merit. I am a bit more critical so I find it 4/10 thanks to the story and characters, mileage may vary.
This is very much my opinion, you might like this show more or less than me.
I cannot in good faith give this show a good score no matter how good the opening is. It has moments, it really does but then it jumps another shark and drills the mess of story and characters back into me.
The animation has moments (especially episode 10) but then the story and characters remind me of how utterly awful the show is.
It wants to be a good fate show so hard, it is exactly because it tries so hard that the show is bad. With the overly bland characters, shark jumping and messy story it really destroys this show. It tries too hard.
**Spoiler Free Review** (Only things are described on the Description of the anime.)
So, have you seen other Fate's Series?
You should watch those before watching Apocrypha.
Because its like the FOURTH show on that world, they will not explain everything and show everything they showed in the other series.
Fate Apocrypha on my view its above any limits on power that the other ones had, here we have FULL POWER fights between 7 vs 7 servants, and not considering that we have like 7 LEGENDS in each team, that's going to be good to watch.
What about the fighting styles? That's cool! They animated each character with different styles
on fighting and when they fight each other there is a great mix that you can see they thought before animating, that's very necessary considering that has a lot of different classes and ages of fighters.
90% of the Animes spend their budget on things that most of people sadly don't see that good, who watch a LOT of Japanese content can actually see and understand that.
So they spent their budget on something you can really see even without any knowledge on Japanese world, AMAZING COLORFUL fights, explosions and a little on scenarios and weaponry, great face expressions and a nice thing that I noticed that has some Characters that have same skills other Servants on other Fate Series had, those ones have great similar animation and strategies, I love that.
Yeah! For me that's it, they don't make EACH frame beautiful because there's so much to see, you can't even process that quantity of information, I needed to watch 3 times the 8,9,10 episode to really say OMG that's COOL!
On Story, plot, Character development... These normally on the other fate series you have a LOT like A LOT, I enjoy that but gladly they went to other trail, (actually there are like 2x more episodes to come, they can show great plot/character development on that).
In my opinion the track of history and the Characters weren't very detailed and had a looooot of background infos to us to understand, they create a good feeling on some characters before having true combat, so we can FEEL them when they're in combat.
I really love fighting scenes, because that shows the TRUE power of animation and knowledge on spending money in an difficult way (it is NOT easy to animate fights with that magnitude, BUT we're in 2017 MAN, but NO, the animation world and tools didn't evolve that much in the past years, a lot of people criticizes that but a little bit of study on that show that DRAWING frames on a fight did not changed the same as CINEMATIC movies). Having budget on fights its hard because you need to project your costs on each battle and dont exceed much, in other words, a lot of thinking and planning, I like that too. And thinking how they thought to have that conclusion.
So my Score is 9 because that's my kind of anime (and I didin't watch it all)
(specially for being a story that I understand and LOVE (all the fate series and visual novel)).
They got pretty cool characters too! But each Fate has their cool characters, so I wont detail here, could be spoiler!
Hurry and watch this piece, its worth watching even if you don't like fights that much.
I see a lot of hating on this page, thats why I created an account to make sure someone reads this. (Hating and talking bad on a show without showing good parameters or references for me its equally to yell that you don't like it PERIOD)
I have got to admit that I am not an "true" Fate fan who has played through the visual novels, (although that is something I hope to do one day). I have watched UBW, Zero and FSN and that was enough to get me excited on the Fate franchise.
Honestly, looking at the reviews I've seen for this show I am very disappointed because I feel that many reviewers are simply hating the show more than necessary. They're all just colossal rants about how badly people were upset about the show compared to UBW and Zero. So this is hopefully a more realistic review. (without spoilers)
In previous Fate anime we're used to seeing 7 mages and 7 servants whereas Fate Apocrypha takes that level of hype and just doubles it. The premise of a Grail war involving 14 servants should be enough to make anyone who knows anything about the Fate franchise interested. Unlike previous Fate shows, Apocrypha is a full out war instead of a series of 1 on 1 fights (although there are a lot of those). Throw in the ruler class and the show has a lot of potential. It does a terrific job of showing the different story lines for each individual character, which is challenging considering the sheer number of significant characters. The pacing for the show shows no gaps; and one thing that Apocrypha does very well is the consistency in showing rather than telling.
Art - 9
This is the biggest complaint that most people have about Apocrypha. "OMG this adaptation isn't done by ufotable, this show is gonna be crap, I'm calling it". People who say that have had a taste of the good life but have been pampered into unreasonably high expectations, unlimited budget works was a gem but A-1 isn't a huge step down from there. In episode 1 we are given a glimpse of the fight sequences and it did not fail to meet my expectations of a Fate franchise. That level of art has remained consistent throughout the show (at least up till episode 9 where I am when writing this review) and hopefully it will get better as we approach the end of the show. Character designs are great (although I'm guessing that's probably from the novel). For this kind of show all that really matters is that the fight sequences are done right which so far, that is the case. The rest of the surroundings, (cities, battlefields...etc.), are appealing to the eye which is what's needed.
Sound - 10
The fight music and background music during the show is amazing and very pleasant to listen to. It sets the perfect atmosphere of excitement for the upcoming fight and the chaos of the war itself. Even when there isn't any fighting and the characters are planning or just simply hanging around, the music perfectly sets the mood. The only part that bothered me with sound was the opening by EGOIST, but it's one of those songs that grows on you. Listen to it a few times and you'll have trouble skipping it when you want to watch a new episode. The ending for those of you that stick around to hear it is okay, but I'm not really using that for my rating of this section of the show. I'm focused mostly on how well the music gets the watcher immersed into the show.
Character - 8
The best part of a Fate story by far is the characters, because everyone is significant from different perspectives. There is no clear protagonist nor antagonist, (okay that's not exactly true but it is to an extent). The different heroes from different eras always leads to a clash of ideals and principles of each of these heroes which is what makes the Fate characters interesting to watch. Fate Apocrypha does this very effectively. With the different relationships between these heroes and their identities. Every character has their own unique goals and paths to follow, some accomplish their goals, some die in the process. The characters and their personalities are clearly defined when first introduced and have remained consistent to their ideals thus far, justifying all actions the characters make.
The only complaint I would have with the characters is the one trap character Astolfo. Gender-swap characters are always fun but traps make a person confused.
Enjoyment - 10
Fate Apocrypha is just fun to watch. I love the characters and whatever little similarities exist between this show and other Fate shows like *Shirou Kotomine*. Unlike Fate Zero or UBW, this show has different characters, premise and the fight scenes occur more frequently (simply due to the number of servants in the grail war). This makes for a more action packed entertaining show. The other thing is the identities of some servants are very interesting and what role they could play in the show.
Overall - 9
I would recommend this show to anyone who enjoys action, mystery and history (or any Fate fan). This show is heavily underrated, 9 episodes in there is still so much left to cover with so much more to enjoy. To anyone debating with reviews whether to watch the show or not I would say. Don't give up on this show before starting it, just based on bad reviews. There are many great redeeming qualities to the show and you need to watch it for yourself to decide. Every show has mixed opinions, but I guess for most people this is either a hit or miss but if you enjoyed other Fate shows, you will definitely enjoy Fate Apocrypha.
Personally, I'd recommend watching to episode 7 if you want to get a real feel for the show. If you don't like it that far in it's probably not worth it for you then.
As someone that loves Fate Zero with all his heart, Fate Apocrypha hurts my soul. It's nearly as bad as Grand Order.
There's so many plotholes and unexplained contrivances, and to force it to make sense they just make up more contrivances. Granted, it's Fate, so I expected a fair amount of exposition and info-dump to set up the world which I might not have understood, but they just don't do it right. I think a huge part of the problem is the crux idea of the series: a 7 vs 7 battle with two separate sides using the same concept of master-servant
from previous series. It's as if the writer went "hmmm how can I make *another* Fate series except different... OH I KNOW! Same before... except double the servants!" I mean, yea, ok idea, but the execution is just terrible. For one 'faction' the way they manufacture conflict between characters is by creating these terrible, creepy bad guys with shit morality.
For example, one is a rapey female master that sexually assaults her servant. Another is a blubbering, unqualified fat guy that does nothing but give his servant stupid commands. Another is evil mcfuckwad incarnate. Then there's the most generic, nice-guy glasses-kun who makes me want to kms. All of the characters are entirely uninteresting and no matter which way the plot moves it doesn't make you want to watch them. So immediately, half of the anime just sucks.
A lot of the adaptation isn't accurate whatsoever so the animation team totally fails at conveying things like distance or how powerful an attack is. There's a fight scene wherein an archer servant has an surprise attack opportunity and takes it, yet even with all the time in the world he fails in killing or at least seriously maiming the enemy servant, who has no idea it was coming. Archer could have gone for a head shot, neck, heart, etc. literally any lethal point. He could have even switched targets to another enemy servant who was even easier to kill, but he squanders his chance and does nothing more than give up his location. I found myself facepalming every 5 seconds whenever there was a battle because the only thing driving the momentum of the fight is the characters' stupidity.
And don't even get me started on the homunculus shit... if you really want to watch this anime, go ahead, but it is terrible. Just know the Fate fandom will defend it to the ends of the earth so don't bother arguing with them. Easily the worst show this year.
Apocryha had some interesting concept but ultimately too high to achieve. I was open to the fact that A-1 pictures were behind the helm for this series but so far it has been a disappointing journey.
While it has some decent concept it ultimately fails to execute it as too many characters were involved in the story which has limited time for each one. You can't feel tension for many of the characters as a result, making the high stakes fights hard to root for. Although it is bad by fate series standard it is still better than some of its competitions.
This is where it falls
for me, because of how bad the animation is when compared to fate series standard. The generic enemies are CG which is ok but because of the design and color it is hard to tell what they are doing. The servants have unnecessary complex design too, making the animation pretty difficult to be fluid and what we end up with is a 5 fps mess while fighting. The complex design looks good for still image and action figure but horrible to animate. I truly feel they missed a chance to show good fight choreography and animation due to how complex characters looked.
Some of the ost is memorable and accompanies the scene pretty well. Sound effect is above average but I noticed things like using the same sword clashing sound way too often. The impact noise is way too distorted too, I had to check my speakers to make sure that my speakers wasn't acting up. Then comes the voice acting, certain characters have great performance but when it falls oh boy does it falls short. Particularly a character who was given just some grunting noise and no dialogue lines. It worked for Hodor and Groot because there are visual to aid the emotion but this character had her face covered as well making it silly.
Way too many characters and too little time to develop their story and motivation. Most of them feels generic and quite frankly it really bothers me how so many characters didn't get a chance to show more. The fact that I have a hard time recalling most of their name goes to show just how little impact they make on me.
I really want this to be a good series since it proves that you don't have to have sky high budget to be successful. But maybe due to the over ambition and desperation to separate themselves with ufotable it falls short. Should you watch it? No, unless you already watch all the other fate series and just want more of it regardless of quality then go ahead.
Let me start off by saying this - I have no idea how to feel about this anime, and others who have watched may feel the same, let me tell you why (No spoilers):
It's a fate/ anime. This is probably the main reason i'm actually even giving it a 6, having watched a majority of the fate series. However, this one feels extremely lacklustre with a lack of organising events that happen ( This links into Art, as i'll explain soon). At points it feels as though the pace is fast, and the next scene suddenly seems so slow, you can
see this quite clearly in episode 7, where it feels like random scenes put together and labelled as an 'anime'.
Honestly, i just don't see it working for Fate/Apocrypha. It's acceptable, for sure. But it doesn't seem to fit the Fate/ story, if you get my gist of what i'm saying. Compare it to how UFOtable produced the anime, and i'm sure not only I , but others will feel how it is more visually enhacing, leaving you craving for more. Ofcourse, A-1 pictures is a good studio, but i just don't see it fitting this style of anime.
To put it simply, the sound was pretty shit. Definitely felt like a repetition of noises which you zone out after a while (such as Berserker saying grr over and over again).
This is probably the main aspect i'm dissapointed in. Assuming Fate/ Apocrypha is 24 episodes, the character development just isn't there, purely focusing on Jeanne and Seig. There are many lovely concepts from both sides, such as Shirou, but instead they bypass mysterious characters with a brief introduction of them.
Not only this, but the genrerbender is getting annoying now. With Fate/ Stay , the saber being female was quite a nice surprise, but it had lore to it. Here, they put Jack the ripper as a female? seriously? Now i'm questioning whenever a new character came up post meeting the assassin if it's male or female.
Not much to say here, i'm honestly watching it because of the story, and it's part of the Fate Series.
I think the correct word would be disappointing, to say the least. There was some hype coming into this anime, and it let me down. However it is still only 7 episodes at this current point in time, and we may get to know more about the characters, so lets keep our fingers crossed!
Note: Sorry if i did anything wrong, it's my first review :) Will update as i go along.
This "Fate" adaption may actually be the worst one yet. The market for the "Fate" series is fairly over-saturated as it is, considering there's like 3 animes already and a number of other medias. Although one anime is an attempt to remake the original with 3 times the production value and bad story.
The creator of the "Fate" franchise had enough foresight to know that he couldn't get away with countless remakes of the same basic free-for-all with different characters... So he decided to not only double the amount of competitors, but have them on 2 predetermined teams. As you could imagine
the already limited amount of character development for anyone besides the main "duet" is now non-existent. Something Fate/Zero didn't suffer from, because it juggled most every character well.
It cannot decide whether it's trying to be taken seriously or if it's just trying to be popular in a "Am I cool yet?" kind of way. It's also about as subtle as a comedian explaining his own joke.
The characters are next-level bad for the series. Literally copy/pasta. The main character can be effectively described as "Pity Me" bait.
Even worse is that "Shirou", probably the most hated character in the franchise, has returned in a horrible way. I can only imagine the franchise's creator desperately trying to make Shirou a likable character by following the worst examples.
The "Trap" stereotype character is hopefully the only reason people will even know of this dumpster fire. It basically combines every "Trap" cliche into one pandering character. Uncreative to the point that it gets lampooned immediately.
Every other "Fate" anime has done what this does, except better. The biggest difference is that the other shows had things that made them entertaining, instead of just slamming things together in a desperate attempt to be good.
In all seriousness, this doesn't deserve 25 episodes. I don't see this redeeming itself in any meaningful way. And having the single worst character in the franchise come back pretty much seals the deal for this being irredeemably mediocre at best.
I'll straight up with you all. This anime was a disappointment. I've been a fan of the Fate Stay Night series for a very long time. I helped a teeny tiny bit in the translation of the Visual Novel. I've done a completionist guide for Fate Hollow Ataraxia (wouldn't recommend). I'm someone who still can't decide if Best Girl is Saber (the real Saber. Not the crap from this anime) or Rin... Safe to say I'm quite invested in the Fate series. And this just let me down, so much...
Lets start with the problems with this series, atleast from my view-point...
This is just a frickin
cash grab over a famous series.. The characters are either cute girls (doing cute things for the most part), or the males who are just so boring and having an extremely narrow/single-dimensional personality. One of the Berserkers I can't even feel like giving a shit about , the other (a cute Tsundere Berserker; WTF?). Then we have another Paladin of Charlemagne who just does cute things. We are not shown anything seriously about her other than she is a cute girl (possibly air-headed) that like to do good things while also being cute... Then we have Jack the Ripper who is a 7 year old girl or something (for all the loli lovers)... Yup. Jack the Ripper - a seven year old (I have to assume there is some character - possibly she has a wild imagination - literally)...
Then we have a Sun God hero (forgot who he was) who is dark, mysterious and powerful, and we know nothing more. Next we have 2 heroes from the greek fantasy stories who have some chemistry. I'm hoping they might use this somehow, but my hopes are low that it will be any good. Next up:- Siegfried who ... wants nothing. Also, making him boring AF. Next up the Saber from the red faction, who is cute and strong and nothing else. Then next we have Castor from black faction who just wants to complete his toys.. damnit... The Assassin from the red faction .. who is a caster? While the caster from red faction is mostly a useless bumbling idiot. Next up is lancer from the black faction who is Dracula / Vlad the Impaler?? I don't even know... There were more? I don't even remember, the heroes in this are so boring. Oh yeah, forgot the Nekomimi archer girl from red faction, that is so weak, would make archer from the original series facepalm. Next up:- all the non-heroic support casts.... Shirou leading the red faction. Shown to be really strong. Not sure whats happening with him. He also looks like a slightly grown up Shota now? I can't even tell if he is the Shirou from the normal series. Next up Darnic - who wants to win. Yeah nothing more than that. Next:- the necromancer who is the master of red's saber. I suppose he was supposed to be like Fate/Zero's Rider? But since he has no charm, also falls flat as a character. The other - I'm not even going to bother. They are a waste of time.
Lastly. We come to the main characters. We have Jeanne d'Arc who.. I'm not even sure whats happening with her, and Sieg who is so generic, he ups mediocrity and genericness than even the characters in Hentai (quite a few don't even show their faces)... This guy has nothing. Its obvious the director wanted to show some sort of internal struggle in him, but IMHO he just feels pathetic (possibly intended) and boring. He doesn't even leave a sour taste, as you don't even feel like caring for him.
So.. Why did I type so much and still give absolutely nothing to you the reader of this review except a giant wall of text?? Thats to highlight problem number 1,2 of this series. There are too many characters, and seems to me as though far too little time was spent on each of them making them ridiculously empty as characters and really boring to watch. Problem 2:- They went for fan-service with every character design, making the bunch of them - useless. Both of these really tick me off, as I found the character development of the original franchise to be exceptional. They made you care about every single character, and the ones that were ignored, came back to awesome levels in the other series in the same frranchise. Here not a single character has been given time except for Sieg, and him I just don't want to care for him because he is so boring and hollow.
Next up: Story and story-telling
The premise was interesting. They wanted to up the "power" by adding far more characters to the mix. Just have 2 factions that would just duke it out. I was waiting to see what types of cool strategies they would use to try and get a one-up on each other.. But alas, the strategy on both sides was to challenge each other in open combat to hit each other with large hammers, and see who dies first.... Yeup. Read: No strategy or planning. Both sides "loose" important pawns from their factions, and everyone is like "Meh". And again,due to the number of supporting characters as I've described above, there just isn't time for character development
Wow. This was a complete let down. Excusing the original FSN anime with its mana-dragon and what-not. The Art of the FSN series has been awe inspiring, and would literally be the best Art in anime for that time period. Fate / Zero had epic art. And then came along Fate / Stay Night UBW that literally blew everyone's minds. FSN, FSN UBW the movie, weren't pathetic, and will stand the test of time (considering how old they are). Fate Apocrypha on the other hand, is just so-so. AFAIK this is not done by UFOTABLE but by A-1 . And its been a complete let-down for the series. The art is about as good as the Fate / kaleid liner Prisma Ilya spin-off series. There isn't much to talk about here, as the story is , for the most part - nonexistant. There doesn't seem to be any real weight around the wishes of these 2 sides. The "bad" characters are cliche. The good ones are Meh.
Oh God. The OP is garbage. I can't listen to it. Have to skip it every time. Don't feel like listening to it. The other sounds in the game are OK. It isn't absolutely terrible, but its nowhere close to a masterpiece by any margin (or even note-worthy TBF).
Well, I can watch it. I wouldn't turn it off. But I feel, its the FSN fan boy in me making me do that.I'm hoping (against hope) that this series might somehow redeem itself, somewhere. As of now though, doesn't seem like thats gonna happen.
Its absolutely mediocre. The story-line is non-existent just like its character development. It has none of the good characteristics from the original series. It does have quite a few bad characteristics that define it though. On the whole, I wouldn't call it bad, just boring. Which might be worse than just being bad...
I haven't written a review in a very long time, but this total mess has really compelled me to say something. I'll try to keep this pretty short, as I don't have that much to say, I just feel it has to be said.
I want to start by saying this is a massive, massive disappointment. Fate/Zero and Fat/Stay Night: Unlimited Bladeworks are both series that I hold in very high regard, so I had similar expectations for this one. I wish I didn't, because if this show wasn't tied to such great predecessors, I may have at least found some level of enjoyment from it,
but that is not the case.
Story: The plot here just ignores the other parts of the Fate series and goes of its own thing. This would be fine if there was enough plot for it to stand on its own, but there isn't. It openly and awkwardly contradicts things stated in the previous parts of Fate, and it's not pretty. On top of that, This could be so much cooler if it took place after Unlimited Bladeworks as there could be some really interesting parallels and character interactions, but the writers of Apocrypha thought it would be better to start fresh and completely bland.
Art: Why does this look worse than Fate/Zero? It's newer, so you would think it would look better. Unlimited Bladeworks and Fate/Zero are some of the prettiest anime around, yet this looks worse. You'd think that maybe they traded pretty for animation, but the animation itself isn't as good, in fact, sometimes it's really awful.
Sound: Nothing special here. But some of the voice acting isn't great.
Character: The second biggest downfall yet. There are 14 of them, which is WAY too many to make you care, so you don't. There isn't a main character that you're attached to, and most characters have had a total of 4-5 minutes of screen time, leading to everyone being horrifically underdeveloped. Not to mention, most of them are just completely unlikable.
Enjoyment: Thanks to the slow pace of the dialogue and the poor choreography of the fights, no part of this is enjoyable to watch. Funny considering the two Fates before this had some of the best combat sequence choreography I've ever seen, what happened?
Overall: Just a miserable failure with no redeeming qualities. It's practically an insult to those that came before it.
Disjointed Quality drops when A1 Pictures was behind of it.
Eh? Really Not like the story ain't gonna be a lot downer cause in the later volume of this light novel which is altered connect to Strange/Fake it does seems ended real bad. (Damn you spoiler)
As far as state when other studios like Layduce (The one's who directed FGO)
Studio Pierrot (Who Butchered TG every single chapter since Root A) and Lastly DEEN (Well I'd say Fate Route ended a huge justice in the adaptation and of course in the VN, but why care about the quality over the story)
Relying the fact when Type-Moon doesn't even mind
whether if Ufotable didn't pick this series because of a third rate animation.
Nitpicking about UBW and Fate/Zero (Honestly comparing these shows to Apocrypha wouldn't easily get amount of credit which is why upon the animation but setting is way more expanded about the False Grail War set from other place not once in Fuyuki City)
Vividly across when it's truly pointless where it directly less attracted not for long how biased the rating suddenly change for wicked aspects after getting hype cause of the preview. Why else can you expect about the first damn animation by A1 Pictures at the first set of scenario. Less material, Less Rush and Less unexpected sudden plotholes that attains the viewer to loose their screwed attention.
It would be better if Kalafina gets the spotlight of doing the second OP cause some opening of EGOIST doesn't seem fit to this set of series
Overall Impression : *Unspecified*
Either Love it or Hate it.. is nowhere to begin with
Fate/Apocrypha... Well here we are.
Fans of prior Fate adaptions are in for a bit of a surprise with this one.
For starters, the setup for this version is a bit all over the place. It isn't as sharp or as crips as previous anime. Now I do understand that this takes place in a universe that is a bit of an off-shoot, I can understand the lack of clarity early on, but still it is something to point out. It is a bit unclear of who the main players in this Holy Grail war will be. Twice as many servants+masters exist in this version
so I'm sure you can guess how tough that can be. There are so many pieces at play it may be hard to keep up.
The simple dialogue between battles, the look into the pasts of some of the characters is all quite dull at the moment. It is unclear if those glimpses really matter for the overall story or how they flashbacks and background elements will come into play.
The animation also isn't as crisp and lush as what we may be used to. The heroes seem way too OP in contrast to previous adaptions. It is hard to tell what is going on in the fight sequences, also almost every attack they utilize is followed by that large booming noise... still unsure of how I feel about it. It all feels a bit rushed, the pacing is a bit all over the place as well.
I really do want to like this anime, being a fan of the Fate franchise, but I am finding much of the episodes a chore to get through. If you are here for anything in the vain of enjoyment that Fate/Zero or Fate/Stay Night brought, you may be in for a disappointment.
This doesn't mean one can't enjoy the anime. Overall if taken at face value, it is an action packed anime with elements many have come to love, so I'm sure as this moves forward, it has potential to be better for the viewers.
This is my 1st review so don't judge too quickly eh???
If you have watched the Fate series as a whole (whether FSN, UBW or the off-shoots like Prisma Illya), all the notes are in your head: Art, animation, quality sound and enjoyment, in comparison to newer ones like this parallel universal off-shoot to FSN.
Done by A-1 Pictures, and coming from someone whose intro is THIS anime, I can lament that a lot of people, ESPECIALLY Fate fans, will screw over how much this anime pales in comparison to the decade-old franchise in all forms, like the art and animation is TRASH, not to mention that
in some comparisons to Deen/SN, most would prefer Deen/SN over this. (This is just my opinion so don't bash).
So, with all due consideration, let's get into this shall we?
Story: Set in a parallel universe to FSN, AGAIN another fight ensues to whoever gets the Greater Grail...except that the NUMEROUS characters all are just there to fight, fight and fight! Plot holes and loopholes pop-up GALORE! It's just...meh, and I mean if I were (to say a Fate fan), introduced to something else like Ufotable's rendition of FSN and UBW, the difference can be told.
Score: 7 (Fine)
Art & Animation: LET ME CLARIFY ONE THING. It's not too bad for a work that involves A HELL LOT OF ACTION, but A-1 Pictures clearly hasn't show a prowess for things like these. If you have watched shows like Oreimo S2 and SAO (coming from the same studio as well), knowing that their elements of art and animation are ALWAYS a mix of action plus some other genres (e.g. sci-fi, romance). but focusing entirely on a single heavy-punched genre, lots of loopholes can be seen. So again, NOT BAD BUT NOT GOOD EITHER.
Score: 5 (Bad-Avg)
Sound: WE NEED RANTING ON THIS.
THE OP IS JUST PLAIN BADDDDD!!!! To be honest, I've never listened to an OP that SOUNDS THIS HORRIBLE, and to mix this with pure action is like putting banana in peanut butter! Not to discredit the song, but it just doesn't flow for a VERY GOOD REASON!
In-between voices and sounds sounded fine to me, really no issues.
Is it really plain bad that of the sounds here, I liked the ED song the most? A nice ending to end off the episodes feels calm...
Probably 2 weeks down the road (at the time of this review), we'll surely get another new set of OP and ED songs (since this is a 2-cour), but hopefully changes can be made...so PLEASE!!!
Score: 6 (Fine)
Enjoyment: ONE WORD: MEHHHH....
For most of the time, I was just glued watching this N trying to make sense of the differences between this and SN (if only barely), and the most obvious would have been just the parallel setting.
Score: 4 (Bad)
Halfway point (12/25 eps) overall:
Sorry, Fate/Apocrypha, like really, the reference from its LN is that it is hit a little too hard, that the excitement drops very quickly...hopefully the 2nd cour can pick things up, and give us another opinion to end the whole series by the end of the year. 3-EPISODE RULE!!!
For now, this is NOT a recommended anime to an awesome series to watch, ESPECIALLY to Fate fans, so you can drop it now and come back later, most probably around another 3 episodes or so and see whether your opinion has changed.
So after watching Fate/Zero and the Fate/stay nights I felt compelled to finally write something about Fate/Apocrypha. There is so much here that I want to say that I hope I can keep it all organized.
So first I want to link story and characters together. Why? Because this is Fate. Those two things are inherently linked. If you know the character, then you know their motivation for the fight and then you have your story. Zero did it incredibly well. Stay night did it alright (I blame the poor pacing of the Light Novel, but hey, what are you going to do?). Apocrypha has taken
the high standard of the Fate series and lowered it to a level of Dragon Ball Z. Don't get me wrong, I grew up with DBZ, but that's not why I watch Fate.
I don't watch Fate for flashy fight scenes, quick one liners, and random stare downs that last way longer than they should. I watch Fate because I want to 1. see historical figures and people of legend fight in the modern world and 2. I want to see people with real goals and motivations fight for the chance to wish and change their lot in life.
Which is not what we get here. We get characters that just... exist. They do very little other than act cocky or stay silent altogether. Not only that, but the show has a serious problem with figuring out women in the world of legends. The gender bending has gone way out of control. I was ok with it with Arthur because as a big Arthurian Legends fan, I thought it was an interesting twist on why Guinevere went for Lancelot. But now we are expected to believe that Arthur's son, Mordred (explain that one, please I dare you), Frankenstein's monster, and Jack the Ripper are all women now? If Achilles and Heracles exists in the Fate universe, why haven't the creators used actual women legends like Athena, Hera, a lady of the Lake, Bloody Mary, Elizabeth Báthory, Andraste, Neferiti, the list goes on people! We finally get Joan of Ark and it's in a show where we get Shakespeare as a Caster.
While that might insult me or even you on a principle level, know that it wouldn't even matter if they were all the correctly assigned from history. The biggest issue with the characters is how many there are and how fast they are all introduced. You get almost a montage of the teams and it is no where near enough to get to know 1. who all these summoners and servants are and 2. what they want out of this fight. It is as if the show wants to rely on the fame of their servants to do the work for them. But that still fails to explain WHY anyone is doing this. Even worst is with the summoners who just follow orders, yell at each other or at their servants, or sexually assault them.
So without any characters or motivation the story falls apart. A lot of build up was happening in the early episodes, but once the giant fight begins, that build up leads to nothing. It felt like the show wanted to reveal something, but instead it decided to go into a very DBZ fight sequence of people charging up their fireballs and swords and just quickly flashing at each other.
This brings me to the art. While just standing around or chatting it "looks" like a Fate series, it isn't. Gone are the subtleties of characters giving side ways glances at things they care about, gone are the perfectly constructed postures that made characters give off their arrogance or stealth or strength, and gone are the well strategized fight scenes in which a character must choose whether to keep their armor on for protection or remove it for speed. Now everyone is just a God and we are just left to watch them whale on each other.
The sound is miss and almost hit. From the intro song to the loud explosions, the show really just can't seem to invest money into any form of quality. The only shining grace is the voice acting, but the bar for that isn't raised that high with the script they are reading. It is so simplistic and utterly devoid of any real pacing that I'm never left feeling sorry for anyone on this show. I can't connect to these characters because the show refuses to give them a chance to grow on us.
So how can I sum this up and give it a 6 in enjoyment, but a 3 in Overall? Because I know full well this is garbage and is terrible for me. I'm devouring skittles thinking that if I eat enough of them, it'll make up for the lobster I don't have. But deep down I'm starting to feel sick. I'm sick of this show trying to force emotional connection on me to a character that hasn't earned it (looking at you Frankenstein's monster). I'm sick of the fight scenes that I can't see what's happening in. And I'm sick of hearing Joan of Arc say "something is wrong with this Grail War" but never actually reveal any of it.
We as fans deserve better. Joan of Arc deserves better. Fate deserves better. Here's hoping it has one hell of an ending to make it all worth it.
Fate shows live and die by their characters. Past series (Fate/Zero) have impressed by delving deep into the motivations of the large (14+ characters) cast, each with a well explored personality and strategy, and then setting them lose upon each other.
Fate/Apocrypha ups the ante by doubling the roster to 14v14 and promising back-to back battle royales. The heroes are stronger too, many of them being divine and/or near-immortal. I believe these promises are the root of this show's failure.
Since there simply isn't enough time to explore all 29+ of these heroes in 2 wars, the show rushes and glosses over
and uses caricatures and stale/cliche themes. More than 1/3 of the way through the series, and the only character we've seen really explored is Seig, a cliche artificial life form who seeks to free others of his kind, and who isn't even a participant in the grail war!
Power creep is an important problem in Fate/Apocrypha, as it significantly lowers the stakes. Why should I care if characters we are told are divine or essentially invincible do battle, especially if I have no idea what anyone other than the golemancer and Vlad are planning? In Fate/Zero, if a character lost, their dream died with them so we cared much more - here, they are but one of 14 on their side, so the others could probably take up the slack and nothing really is achieved.
All in all I don't recommend this show. I will continue watching because watching this show make mistakes helps me to understand better what made my favourite anime so enjoyable.
TL;DR - too many characters, none of whom are fleshed out enough to capture interest. Too much power creep (divine, near-immortal characters, and 14v14 instead of 7-hero FFA) to make battles feel impactful or important. Too much screentime given to development of minor character's cliche side story (Seig). Skip this one.