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Posts Tagged ‘Girls und Panzer’

keisensha

おい、軽戦車、そこをどけ!

いやです!それに89式は軽戦車じゃないし。

中戦車だし!

Hey you, get that light tank out of the way!

Don’t wanna! Besides, the Type 89 isn’t a light tank.

It’s a medium tank, you know!

The Ooarai girls are justified in their repeated pleas for more firepower, but on the other hand, people tend to get attached to objects and equipment that helped them overcome a great challenge.

It was great to hear that just a bit of pride towards their underpowered vehicles slipped into the girls’ lines. 

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P0023250

I crawl out from deep underground with a new project in tow.

Many of you have probably already heard about Precious Memories, a collectible card game similar to Magic the Gathering or Yugioh, except with more moe girls than powerful spells and terrifying monsters.

20120908_a851ff  Of course, knowing about the game and attempting to play it are completely different matters. Playing PureMemo requires you:

  • know Japanese
  • live somewhere where you can get the cards
  • find playing partners

…which is not exactly easy. But it is also about to become easier. I present to you the Precious Memories plugin for the Lackey card game simulator:

Lackey1

Armed with the Precious Memories plugin, Lackey offers the following features:

  • card translations you can easily toggle on and off
  • a card database allowing you to look up any card within seconds, even when offline
  • a convenient deck builder tool
  • the ability to test out your new deck idea for initial draws etc. as many times as you like before you invest your hard-earned money into the cards you’re missing
  • the ability to connect with other Lackey users to play a game online

Lackey2

The plugin project starts out with the 126 cards making up the Girls und Panzer set, but the aim is to quickly expand to other sets, starting with those that have fan translations already available. (Update: Yuru Yuri, Madoka Magica sets added)

Getting started

To install and run the Lackey plugin:

  1. Go to the official Lackey webpage and download the file matching your operating system. Install Lackey.
  2. Download the latest plugin version here. (Mediafire mirror)
  3. Unpack the plugin to the “plugins” folder in your Lackey directory.
  4. Run Lackey and go to the Preferences tab. Click on “Browse installed plugins to load one” and select Purememo from the menu.

Beginner tips

Right click on a player name and choose an item from “Load recent deck” to load a deck. But first, go to the deck editor to construct and save your own decks.

Right click anywhere on the playing field and choose “Draw X” to draw a specific number of cards at once, otherwise use the “Draw” button on the field.

Play cards by dragging them from your hand and onto the playing field, or right-click –> Play.

Discard card by right-click –> Send to Top of –> Discard Pile, or temporarily drag them to the playing field, change the card zone to the discard pile and drag the card there.

Double click a card to ready or rest it. You can also right-click and use the appropriate options.

Send the top card of the deck to the point pile by right-clicking the deck button and choosing Move/Top/1/To top of/Point Pile.

Deck manipulation effects can be carried out by right-clicking the deck-button and choosing Reveal to Owner/Top/X

Lackey will not enforce any rules or card effects. All actions you take are recorded and shown to the opponent in the log box at the bottom of the screen, and it is up to you and your opponent that you play the game in accordance with the original rules.

Precious Memories CCG Rules and Resources

The rules of the CCG have been explained in English by HeartNana here.

A facebook page plugin users can use for coordination purposes was set up here.

The official website of the game (Japanese only) can be found here.

Marlin-sama provides card reviews and translations at his blog here.

A facebook group for PM fans here.

More card translations here, here, here, and other places, probably.

Basic Lingo

Precious Memories-specific terms used in the translation:

Arrival – a character card arrives when you play it from your hand by paying its cost (even if the cost was 0). A character that is placed on the field by the effect of other cards is not considered to have arrived.

Approach/Block – Equivalent to attacking and defending respectively.

Retreat – a character retreats if it is sent from the field to the discard pile as a direct result of participating in an Approach or Block. Characters leaving the field by the effect of other cards are not considered to have retreated.

Score a point – Whenever a character’s Approach is not Blocked, the character scores a point and the topmost card of the opponent’s deck is moved to their point pile. Scoring seven points is the basic win condition of the game.

Contact, Questions & Support

For any questions, corrections, suggestions and the like, you can comment here or drop a line at preciousmemoriesplugin@gmail.com

Other than translating the card effects, expanding the plugin to include new sets requires some simple, but time-consuming data processing. If you have Microsoft Excel (or just Notepad) and would like to contribute a few hours of your time to quicken the release of your favorite set, contact me at the mail address above. Translators interested in the project are also welcome to lend us their support.

That’s all folks, go have fun with the game!

Disclaimer: LackeyCCG is the property of its developer, Trevor Agnitti. The Precious Memories CCG is the copyright of MOVIC & ensky. All related images and text is used for promotional purposes only and will be removed at the request of the copyright holder. 

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8bb8e1d5s

I’ve been keeping a low profile because of the ISML 2013 preparations I’m involved in – that will still take a while to wrap up, but in the meanwhile, have a look at the collection of Garupan-related photos that I picked up along the way.

Ikebana

Hana’s ikebana composition recreated at Ooarai’s Aqua World Aquarium

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Food

Tank cakes

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Tank pork cutlet

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Itasha

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BGEqZuICYAIZyDG

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Real tank rolls out in Ooarai

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RL Maus

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Japanese wiki – number of hits to Maus (tank) page mysteriously (?) increases after the airing of a certain GaruPan episode.201303200059437f0s

Ooarai, under construction… but what’s the sign in the distance?

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Damaged by tank shells, repairs underway (!?)

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Ooarai All-girls victory celebration banner at Ooarai station

(visitors not watching GuP bound to be very, very confused)

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Thank you to the GuP staff for all the great moments. Here’s hoping for a second season! 

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Little.Busters!

 

Picking a list of twelve favorite shows for this year’s AniBlogger Choice Anime Awards was quite a challenge. Deciding on the top ten was easy enough, but after that, I ran out of shows I feel really deserved the recommendation. Normally, I would just put in an ambitious-if-flawed series in there and be done with it, but most of the critic bait this year completely failed to hook me, so I will leave Kokoro Connect, Tsuritama, and Kids on the Slope to the people who actually managed to watch them through. There was the passing temptation to recognize the animation quality of such players as Fate/zeroor Chuunibyou demo Koi ga Shitai,but this would be awkward in the presence of series which managed to balance form and content, including one other KyoAni show.

When I was about to give up the two last spots entirely, I finally remembered there is more to anime than regular series. Movies couldn’t help me out in my predicament. Nanoha and Madoka could probably easily make it onto the list, but that’s for next year. The Strike Witches movie was actually surprisingly good, and would have been here had it ended any other way. But there were some OVAs out there to join the fight and give final form to this list.

Without further ado, my Top 12 of 2012.

 

TAR2

#12 Tari Tari

Tari Tari is a coming-of-age slice-of-life series in a high school setting, which sounds like a summary of every second anime out there. Tari Tari manages to stand out by being the cream of the crop of the genre. Character designs and animation are just what you would expect from P.A. Works – beautiful and consistent in their quality. But the studio also shows it has learned its lesson from Hanasaku Iroha by producing a better-paced and more consistent series that does not stumble with side stories for characters nobody could care less about. Some of the epic feel is gone with the change from a two cour series to a single cour format, and if you compare Ohana and Konatsu as leads, the former leaves a more lasting impression, but the three female leads of Tari Tari work much better as equals. One last hurdle P.A. Works have to clear is making their male leads half as interesting as the ladies (though Wien certainly had impact).

nise

#11 Nisemonogatari

I was not exactly crazy about Bakemonogatari when it first came out, but it is difficult to deny that the combination of Shinbou and Nishio Ishin has style. The second season keeps up tis predecessor’s original style while switching focus to some new themes. A rebel among its peers, Nisemonogatari tramples over some the medium’s favorite tropes and themes while remaining an otaku feast in other areas. Nisemonogatari gets on the list for its hot dialogue and the questions it asks about justice and morality.

horizon

#10 Sekai Senjou no Horizon II

I might have enjoyed Horizon more if I were not watching it raw and all, but the series is good enough to get on the list even with some things going over my head. It features the best-animated one-on-one character fight this year (Futayo vs Gin), some breathtaking aerial maneuvers and plot-relevant debating sessions. Of course, achieving so much on such a scale, the series must also suffer from its fair share of luggage – the enormous cast makes it impossible to focus equally on everyone, the fan-servicey character designs can scare people off, and the infodump sessions are already an established part of the show’s style. But it certainly feels like the Musashi crew made a huge step forward in their great journey, and I am eagerly looking forward to another season of their adventures.

akb0048 2#9 AKB0048

I have a soft spot for shows that manage to break through my prejudice and prove they can work even if it seems like they should have no choice but to fail. AKB0048 is one such show. Whatever it did, it would be attacked as a marketing ploy for AKB48 (and that’s certainly one of the reasons it exists). Thankfully, the people behind the show took this adversity as an excuse to make one of the most audacious shows of the year. The hilarity inherent in the whole “idols are serious business” theme of the show carries it through the first few episodes, until the characters can make things work on their own. The half-friends half-rivals relationship the girls share makes for some unique plot developments, as the characters’ loyalties are constantly being tested by internal and external pressures. The idea of an entertainment ban/ galaxy-wide cultural oppression is fascinating. And that Chieri-Nagisa scene where one of them silently bemoans that a Kirara never followed her, while the other is thinking about how the Kirara in question never once shone for her, is one of the overall best character scenes this year, instantly establishing tensions that last throughout the entire show. I would like to get at least a glimpse of other entertainment groups apart from AKB0048, just to get away from the idea that AKB0048 are the only victim of the entertainment ban and the only group trying to change things in the DES-controlled part of the universe – here’s hoping that the second season may include something like that.

touhou

#8 Touhou Musou Kakyou

I was a few months late in noticing this gem had come out. Musou Kakyou does not exactly match Maikaze’s promotional videos in terms of character designs or animation quality, but it still marks a visible improvement over the first installment and gets enough things right to make my Touhou-fan’s heart dance. I love how all those characters act pure and innocent while actually being quite mean to each other, how Youmu considers skewering somebody reasonable retribution for getting a watermelon stolen (and the poor communication skills that lead to the misunderstanding!), the random developments that will somehow turn out to be part of a Yuyuko/Yukari master plan… The VA cast is a a treat to the point that I still do not know how they got those people on board (Yuuki Aoi as Youmu and Nakahara Mai as Reimu are just delicious!). One thing I’m left wondering is, how the heck did Tewi of all people outrun Youmu? There were probably some dirty tricks involved there, but the chase did not get animated… Another question would be how many years it will take for the third installment to come out…

tamayura-hitotose

#7 Tamayura Hitotose OVA

Attakai Kaze no Omoide Nanode

A heartwarming OVA much in tune with the rest of the series. For my gushing over the series, check last year’s ACAA entry. Here, let me complain about how unfair Japanese name are instead. You see, Fuu’s name is written like this 「楓」and most often read as “Kaede” (meaning “maple tree”). But Fuu’s father is a huge cheat and changes the reading from Kaede to Fuu, shifting the focus from the basic meaning of the kanji and towards the wind radical (風, fuu) on its right side, changing the meaning of the name from “maple tree”to “the wind blowing among trees”. Í am so jealous the Japanese can do cool things like that with their names >_<.

Saki .Achiga-hen #6 Saki Achiga-hen

Saki is just a mix of all the anime tropes I adore. Beautiful female friendship (®), personality-based superpowers and mahjong as a weapon of choice, it’s difficult to go wrong with that. Achiga-hen does have its share of problems, like the awkward pacing and the writer’s inability to decide whether they want to develop the main characters at all or just focus on the Senriyama girls. The original series would be fighting for the top spots, while the spin-off stops at #6. But with its meticulous attention to detail and epic “battle”scenes, the show deserves this high spot on the list.

『咲-Saki-阿知賀編 episode of side-A』は今年の6位にとどまる。といっても充分高い。どんだけ咲好きか、僕は… 正直なところ、展開が速すぎたり、主人公たちの出番が少なかったり、いろいろ問題のあるシリーズだったけど、やっぱり毎週楽しみにしてた。大将戦も気になるし、最終話早く見たい。本編の第二期も…

Shana

#5 Shakugan no Shana Final

A returnee from the ACAA 2011 list, jumping six spots after showing the full extent of what it had in store. Did I mention that I have a soft spot for series that manage to break through my initial dislike for them? I have never seen the first season of Shana, but I did watch the first movie. I remember sympathizing with the Crimson Denizens much more than the Flame Hazes, and I thought this series could not work. But what I thought was the author’s shortcoming was actually part of his plan all along, as what is right and wrong is no longer obvious in this series. The main bad guy crushing the good guys’ morale by showing them their life of hatred and revenge no longer has purpose or justification is a singularity not to be found in other series. The sacrifices the Denizens suffer for the sake of their shared dream made me feel nervous every time it seemed like their efforts would be all for nothing. The Serpent God being all soft-hearted and indulgent when it counted most made me sigh along with Bell Peol. The idea of Hecate being nozomarete kitaru, born through the prayers of others, added gravitas to her self-imposed martyrdom. Sakai Yuuji, an absolute pragmatist but also a man with the biggest messiah complex ever, quickly became one of my favorite characters. Seeing Shana grow strong enough to walk by that fool’s side, but smack him over the head when he really needs it, was yet another pleasure. There were times when the sereis seemed to lack time or budget to spare, but as for the content, it was one hell of a ride.

hyouka

#4 Hyouka

I am quite open about being a KyoAni fan so Chuu2 not making it into my top 12 was a huge disappointment, but Hyouka more than makes up for it. Yes, it was a bumpy ride. for the first few episodes, we were not really sure whether this series would be really good or just extremely pretty. Some early Houtarou-Satoshi conversations hinted that the series could pull off something great if it wanted to, but there was no guarantee. But Hyouka was steadily getting better – not through its mysteries, which had their ups and downs, but through its characters. At some point Hyouka broke through the magical barrier where you do not care what the characters are doing, as long as they can bounce off each other. Heck, I even lobed the fan service scenes in Hyouka which revealed the wild, magnetic attraction Houtarou felt for Chitanda despite his conscious desire to avoid anything as troublesome as a romantic relationship. Satoshi and Mayaka were also great as two flawed characters who did not fit exactly into any character stereotype, remaining something of a mystery until the very end. I might be alone in this, but I consider the mountain incident mystery episode to be the best character development episode of the year, casting Houtarou’s personality and choices in a completely new light just by clearing up a seemingly meaningless mystery.

jinrui

#3 Jinrui wa Suitai Shimashita

Let me be honest here – Nakahara Mai is my favorite seiyuu and every minute of this show, with Nakahara at her best and enjoying herself with a sarcastic and morally skewed character, was like a festival. Jintai had the best lead of the year, suicidal bread, biting social commentary, nihilistic faeries, lonely space probes, everything. It was touching when it wanted to be, ridiculous all the time. If there was one weakness to the show, it were those few moments when it was smart without being funny. Still, Jintai was an experience, nothing alike anything that came before it.

girls und panzer

#2 Girls und Panzer

I remember commenting on Yumeka’s Jintai/Hyouka review and telling her the two would be my second and third place shows of the year unless something incredible happened in fall. And then Garupan happened.

This show knows perfectly what it is good at, and makes sure to pack every episode as full of those things as realistically possible. The action scenes are breathtaking, the use of CG top class, the setting and characters completely wacko. Some scenes, like Yukari’s espionage mission and the Katyusha rendition, are simply one-of-a-kind. The pacing is great – the hook at the end of episode one is like a promise that no, this is not just a moe show. Not that there’s shortage of moe for those interested, but Garupan never gets too caught up with just one thing, always ready with another trick when you let your guard down. Can’t wait for the conclusion to the series… and hopefully a second season!

Garupan was very, very close to taking first place, but the foe waiting there was fearsome indeed…

chihayafuru

#1 Chihayafuru

Whoever made this show should get locked up immediately – its pure awesomeness makes it criminal. Nobody in the west cares about the poem-game karuta, but that is not a problem – nobody in Japan cares either, except a handful of maniacs, as the show freely admits. What counts is that you will soon care very much about the dreams, doubts and struggles of those maniacs.

Chihayafuru appeared on last year’s list after airing around a quarter of its episodes, and it only kept getting better afterwards. Chihayafuru passes the “magical wall of character development” I mentioned for Hyouka soon after the karuta club is properly established, with the newer characters no less engaging than the leads. My favorite part of the show might just be the Taichi – Nikuman / Kana – Tsukue final matches, which is saying a lot as I love Chihaya as the lead of this series. The incredible thing is that none of the characters exist separately, their dreams clash, intermingle and affect each other in unexpected ways, revealing new strengths and new weaknesses in characters we already know, providing them with a new direction. Every opponent Chihaya faces gets better development than some leads in other series, having their own goals and backgrounds, and the experience of fighting them remains in Chihaya, shaping her future actions.

So I would have fallen in love with those characters, whatever it were they did.
But of course it is impossible to remain indifferent to the portrayal of karuta in the show. Very often, portrayals of even relatively complex sports find themselves running out of ideas on how to keep up the feel of progression throughout their run and end up relying on the “faster! stronger!” formula. Chihayafuru never seems to have this problem, revealing step by step how karuta is a game of speed, detecting sounds, memorization, positioning of the cards, positioning of the body, timed breathing, psychological warfare, observational skills, endurance and even argumentative skills. All of this is presented in an easily understandable and believable way, meaning that you will never look at the ‘silly sport’ the same way again.

Chihayafuru rarely uses cliffhangers, but to me, almost every episode ending felt like a cliffhanger. The need to know whether on the next day the characters wake up stronger, ready to learn from their mistakes, is incredible.

Can’t wait till January.

 

Other ACAA 2012 entries to check out:

http://angryjellyfish.wordpress.com/2012/12/19/acaa-2012-ajs-top-12-anime-of-the-year/

http://organizationasg.kokidokom.net/2012/11/27/kuukis-ani-blogger-choice-awards-2012/

http://organizationasg.kokidokom.net/2012/12/19/geniuss-second-take-in-the-aniblogger-choice-anime-awards/

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An Apology

Girls und Panzer episode 11, supposed to air starting 24th December, will not be completed in time, and episode 10.5 will air instead. There are many ways to call this kind of thing, but honestly speaking, it’s a recap. Furthermore, even the schedule for episode 10 has become tighter than ever. Under normal circumstances, drawings are finished grouped in cuts, and those cuts are later corrected via a process of trial and error. But it will be necessary to air without fully completing those adjustments.

As to why it has come to this, the fault lies in my naïve planning. It is because creating an original series made me greedy. While having to maintain a good balance and keep to a tight schedule imposed by a TV series, I wanted to show both the characters and tanks as much as possible. My selfish thinking brought about this result, causing quality drops and postponements.

I am truly sorry.

Regarding episode 10, a fully revised version will obviously appear on the BD/DVD release. Of course, the same goes for all previous episodes. I guarantee that when episodes 11 and 12 air, they will represent a level of quality that will satisfy all viewers. I have no right to make this request under such circumstances, but please wait until that day. I am repeating myself, but I am terribly sorry for disappointing everyone waiting for the broadcast.

At the same time, I would like to thank the many people who enjoyed Girls und Panzer until now. Their encouragement has been a great source of support for me as well as for the staff and VA cast involved in the project. Personally, I do not think that the ending of episode 12 will mark the end of this story. Sometime, somewhere, I would certainly like to present a little something to repay the fans for their support.

Mizushima Tsutomu    

The above is a translation of the most recent post on the director’s blog.The avalanche of comments from fans showing their support, including at least three comments form foreigners, is a heartwarming sight.

監督、頑張れ~!皆待って応援しているから!

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dasd_20121111152024

AT-X station now lists ep. 12 of Girls und Panzer on its schedule for the 9th of January (Wed.) starting from 21:00 JST.

The release date of the episode had to be changed after the show’s initial airing schedule was pushed back a week following episode 5 because of production issues.

Whether the above-mentioned release date will be the fastest airing of the episode remains tentative.

At least it’s not a several month’s wait… (glances pointedly at Saki-Achiga).

EDIT: It now seems increasingly likely that we will have a several month’s wait, with a possible release around March… orz

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“You know, I thought the world ended right then and there. With that last blast against Black Forest Peak, I thought there couldn’t be something more exciting, more incredible waiting ahead. So I thought I would be satisfied, whatever the result…”

So yeah, when I started watching this show, I had no intention of shipping any of the characters together. Blame the people highlighting jealous Yukari screenshots and the like.

I have probably had more experience with writing “opposites attract” couples than similar people coming together, but I see Yukari and Miho as the latter. Both of them suffer from low self-esteem/self-confidence and need acceptance, a place to stretch their wings after a period of hardship. 

When taking on Girls und Panzer in general, and especially Yukari as the main pov of a story, I thought there were two basic rules to follow:

  1. No matter how serious the characters’ intentions, the execution must be sufficiently silly.
  2. The best way to express feelings is through a tank.

Other than that, the setting of Girls und Panzer offers a fun challenge in the often invisible differences between the common sense of its inhabitants and that of our world. The existence of a tank license, with separate rules and regulations, is a necessity brought about by the existence of sensha-dou. The south-east standard mentioned in the story refers to the south-eastern part of the city as seen on a standard map, which is drawn with the assumption that the bow of the ship is pointing north.

Here’s hoping that both of the girls find themselves stronger people after their adventure with this year’s sensha-dou tournament is over.

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