In a dystopian future, two friends dream of freedom... and gain more than they bargain for! Hothead Zed is on the run from the authorities, while his brainy pal Noah struggles with his own battered body. Both find a magical world that seems to offer escape and power undreamed of. Join Zed and his powerful, rebellious spirit Amir Gaul on their search for the ultimate power. It's a force that can save the world—or destroy life as we know it. This is the world of KIBA! Where you must harness the power within and fight with all you got!
I can't believe such a hyped anime doesn't have a review. Well on with the show:
I absolutely loved this anime storywise. It begins with a young boy named Zed, who lives in a strange, polluted town known as Calm. One day, a spirit, Amil Gaoul, appears to him, and he is dragged into another world. This of course, might seem cliche within the genre of time/world-traveling hereos, but where Kiba sets itself apart is in the concept of shard casting, the main magical ability of the people of the alternate world. Shard-casters can produce from their body small shards which unleash an elemental attack. Other
anime have similar concepts, but to use items like this is something that to me is rather new, and I liked it. Also, shardcasters may summon spirits using special shards, and there are six Key Spirits, which are far more powerful than other spirits. Without going into too many spoilers, once the six Key Spirits are brought together, a great power is unleashed, and much of the anime is spent in this quest by multiple factions to obtain the power of the Key Spirits. This makes for a truly epic anime, with a rather interesting ending.
During the first episode, you get the feeling that the art is dark, due to the nature of Calm, but once Amil Gaoul appears, you see the real art style of this anime. Most of the characters are drawn in rather conventional anime form, but the real artistic value of this anime can be seen in the ethereal forms of the various spirits. Amil Gaoul resembles an angel, but there are also spirits which resemble devils, warriors, mythical creatures such as phoenixes and centaurs. Most of the spirits are bipeds, which really adds to their appeal, in seeing ghostly, two-legged forms of many different beings. The places where the shard casters draw their shards from, can resemble anything from an intricate tattoo to jewelry, to some sort of disease-ridden boil, depending where it is, or the very character of the person.
The voice actors are great, although personally I found Roia's voice grating on the nerves sometimes. The battle sequences with Amil Gaoul all have a beautiful chorus to them, so you know when the tide of the battle is going to turn. This is really the only highlight in terms of sound in this anime, the rest could easily be attributed to background sounds.
I didn't like some of the characters, mostly because they often contradicted their own actions in extreme ways. Zed remains for the better part of the anime, a hero, he takes to his role readily, then experiences doubts about himself, and his mentor, who although appears to have a grandfatherly aspect about him, has a dark past that doesn't come out until the last 5 or so episodes. Zed's best friend is another source of frustration, in that he so easily and completely changes himself into the opposite of Zed.
As you are watching the anime, you are completely absorbed in it, and maybe once it ends is when you really start questioning things such as characterization and such, but meanwhile, this is one wild ride. The rather novel concept of shard casting sets this anime apart, and I highly recommend it to everyone
Kiba is a Shounen, Fantasy, Action, Adventure about a world full of shard casters, which are people who can summon spells and spirits. The concept is great but the story is rather second-rate.
The story follows the adventures of two separate boys (Zed and Noa), as they go through many different experiences in their different world, before both stories meet. Even though this anime series has a pretty unique concept of spirits, the story itself is told just like you average shounen anime, which ends up taking away quite a bit of the enjoyment of the show. However the simplistic story is still good enough and
doesn’t feel like it’s entirely dragged out, most of the time. There are also the whole nations at war plot and their relations, which helps give this series some much needed depth, plus there are plenty of plot twists to supplement it.
The characters are probably the worst aspect of the series because they are all fairly one-dimensional and a lot of them go under drastic personality changes for no good reason. The poor dialogue doesn’t help much either, as they tend to spew out clichéd lines. The main character Zed is just as bad because he is a loud-mouth, simple-minded brat that does things senselessly. The only redeeming point has to be the way in which certain characters develop throughout the series.
The animation quality of this series is of a pretty good standard; with plenty of effort put into the environments, the actual spells and appropriately used CG effects. On the other hand the character designs are really plain and the actual fights sequences were somewhat lacking, as if they cut some corners in production. The quality of sound is just as good; with some notably great tunes from the soundtrack and adequate ambient sounds but poor voice acting does take a few things away.
Overall Kiba is a fairly entertaining shounen action adventure, with an erratic storyline. Because there was no clearly defined path, it just felt like the author was making stuff up as he goes along. One interesting thing is that during the action sequences, there are usually 2 fights going on (between the people and between their spirits). However this anime had a problem with leaving things unexplained or just doing a poor job explaining. If you are able to ignore the numerous faults, especially in the characters, you are sure to enjoy this series.
First of I just finished this and All i can say is WOW!
Unlike a few animes of this type it really doesn't drag on and on. The story is constantly moving forward and keeping you well informed on whats going on with the characters and how they play their parts through out the anime.
I was really suprised, when it started i thought it was going to be your average superpower good vs evil kinda thing, but in the end i was wrong. A good bit of twists, and things that may or may not keep you guessing.
One of the best things i
have to say is there are hardly any dead spots, even with memories and flashback.
This is my first review and i hope it can be of some help to some people.
In case you don't wanna read the whole thing, here's a summary of this review;
I suspect that Kiba is the first attempt at combining a war drama with something resembling Pokemon and other fantasy elements that we often see in shonen anime. Much like how Gundam was the first to combine war drama with Mecha back in the day.
It has its fair share of problems, but it's one hell of a ride and is the first of its kind (and possibly the last). I recommend giving it a try if you happened to like either of those things.
And now for the full review:
let's start with the settings. Kiba takes place in a fantasy universe in which humans live on different planets and each planet has a very different way of life. Some of these planets have "Shard Casters" which is basically a warrior who casts spells or summons monsters through these marble thingies. Also Shard Casters usually use swords as well and fight together with the monster. Which is a freakin' awesome idea!
Though certainly not too original, it does present this in a pretty interesting manner. This series uses these elements not in having friendly battles that are just for fun, but in real wars between different nation planets, in which people actually end up dead most of the time. If I still haven't captured your interest then I don't know what to say..
Anyway, the basic routine is rather typical. I mean it's about a boy who manages to stumble in to another planet while running from the authorities on his home planet and becomes a Shard Caster and… You know the drill. I don't want this review to be a synopsis.
How does the series go afterwards? Well, the storyline feels a little random and almost aimless at first. However, it is pretty epic in terms of its content and it has some pretty cool twists and turns along the way. It does involve war and even politics to an extent. Though the politics in it are very simplistic and not very intriguing for the most part. It's kinda understandable, I'm pretty sure this series is intended for a younger audience than (for example) your average Gundam is.
And even though this series has little to no blood in it, characters die in very brutal ways and life is very cheap. So this is a very dark Pokemon clone. And though this is my subjective opinion, I found that aspect alone interesting enough to keep watching it. I'm such a sick bastard, I know..
Also I should warn you that a great deal of the story and the actions characters decide to take don't really make sense. So I suggest you leave common sense aside for this one.
The story is paced ok, I guess. Battles never last more than two episodes, villains get defeated quickly (though not always easily) and most episodes are quite eventful. On the other hand there are some arcs that you'd think will add up with the main story, but eventually turn out to be mostly useless to it. So the pacing is far from perfect.
The ending was both mostly satisfying and a tad open on one little thing. Though generally the final arc in this series was kinda meh anyways (even though it was necessary for the story to be pretty much complete)..
Overall, the story isn't that bad for an anime that is basically a commercial for some card game (which is what Kiba is, though it doesn't make that too obvious).
At the end of the day, it does have a really interesting combination of ideas and a decent presentation of those ideas.
The characters in this series have pretty generic personalities. The MC is like "I wan't to become stronger" and it's for no other reason than his own ego, tbh. Speaking of which there seems to be a lot of cliché lines in this series. The characters aren't defined too well either, if you pay enough attention, you'd notice that sometimes they behave in ways that are out of character.
The characters (or at least the main characters) do have decent backstories, some of which are connected to each other, so in that regard the characters were handled ok. Even though the stories themselves had the usual clichés like childhood friends etc'.
The characters even develop. The MC's development isn't too bad and actually kinda adds up, but some of the other character's development (and I'm not gonna mention which, but it's pretty freaking obvious) are pretty insane and way out of proportion till it becomes kinda laughable.There's still some minor characters that develop, but it's so ridiculous and over the top that it's not even worth mentioning.
The villains in the series are also pretty much your standard shonen villains. Their motivations aren't that interesting and they're just very basic villains overall. Though to their credit, their presence is very threatening because they're very cruel and their body count is high. And they generally have a fun sense of style to them, though nothing we haven't seen before.
The characters even have some closure. But it's done in a pretty half assed way for most of them and it doesn't really make sense.
As you can tell, the characters in this are pretty weak in many areas, so it could turn off some people completely. They actually tried to do something with them, but I'm afraid they failed in most ways.
The character designs are fairly basic with a few stand out exceptions like the main character, Zed who has a somewhat unique design. Some of the monster designs are ok while others are kinda lame (Amil Gaoul) and none of them seem too creative.
The backrounds are pretty good. There are some very nice looking landscapes and though not very detailed they fit ok with the foreground and there is quite a bit of variety in locations.
The animation is pretty good, I guess. It's not particularly great, but this series has a lot of action, and though the battles aren't anything outstanding, they are consistently brutal and fun to watch. Especially in the sword fights where a lot of people get stabbed, fall of cliffs, get burned to death etc' (you know, for kids!).
There's two openings in this series and both of them are pretty good rock/pop kinda songs, especially the second opening that I think was crafted very well. The ending songs weren't bad, but were pretty forgettable. The soundtrack is really good though and memorable. Actually it's unbelievably good, there's some really suspenseful tunes here that contribute a lot of atmosphere.
The sound effects are very basic, we've heard them used a million times before, and other sound effects just sound plain weird. You'll know what I'm talking about if you watched the series.
I don't know Japanese so it's kinda hard to tell, but I think the voice acting is ok but they overdo it with the screaming which becomes pretty silly at points, despite having many famous voice actors.
I can't speak for anyone else, but hell yes I enjoyed it! It's not that great, but it's a lot of fun, for me at least.
Kiba is no masterpiece, but it has to be my favorite guilty pleasure of all time.
I highly recommend to at least check it out.
For the past 20 years, children and adults alike have dreamed of what it would be like to go get a little Pocket Monster partner from a professor and start beating Gyms. But Pokemon is not the only series to feature partnerships and we need something to tide us over while we wait for Sun and Moon!