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September 25, 2012

Anime Review: Accel World

Set in a futuristic world where technology has dominated human's lives and everyone has virtual reality devices that help with everyday life. This anime is about the friendship between a group of friends in a virtual reality world.

Accel WorldSynopsis:

The year is 2046. Haruyuki Arita is a young boy who finds himself on the lowest social rungs of his school. Ashamed of his miserable life, Haruyuki can only cope by indulging in virtual games. But that all changes when Kuroyukihime, the most popular girl in school, introduces him to a mysterious program called Brain Burst and a virtual reality called the Accel World.

Review:

If you are an heavy otaku like me and don't care about the real world accept the electronics gadgets and computer games, then you definitely will enjoy watching Accel World. Simply put, the story is about a young boy in high school that is constantly bullied at school. However, the most popular girl in school takes notices of him and introduces a mysterious game called Brain Burst to him. The game drastically changes his life as this so called game can affect action in real life by accelerating the mind and the body. This virtual reality world is called the Accel World. At first, I was slightly hesitant at how well the story will go with a fat kid as the main characters. However as the story progressed I started to enjoy the casting a lot more. The story is quite simple to understand even though it is set in a futuristic environment. There is a lot of computer game jargon and technological terms throughout the anime, so if you are not familiar with these type of words then its best to steer clear from this anime. That being said, I felt the ending was a bit abrupt and unfinished and slightly disappointing as it did not answer all the questions and motives the story presented so well in the beginning.

The art was quite good and the futuristic effects was just awesome. Also the transitions between real-world to virtual-reality environments are clearly distinguished so you can tell both worlds apart. Character designs were quite good (although I must say rather generic) and well designed. The battle animations and special effects were high quality and enjoyable to watch.

Character voice acting was excellent for most of the characters. I noticed though, that a few characters sounded too similar to be coincidence but I can't say for sure if their characters were done by the same voice actor (I didn't bother checking). The theme songs were quite nice with some fast movements beats and melody as expected for a sci-fi action anime. It was enjoyable to listen to.

It took me a while to get used to the main character, Arita. This is probably the first anime I have watched with a fat kid being the main character. However, I must admire his personality. Do not say that he is a wimp at the start because he is definitely not. If you were constantly bullied at school, wouldn't you be sulking and crying a lot (and have negative thoughts)? For those who have experienced this kind of situation whether major or minor will instantly understand Arita's thoughts and actions. The first episode was pretty emotional and made me teary eyed. Anyhow, moving on to Kuroyukihime, she is your "most popular girl at school" type of person. Well, she isn't a snob or a jerk but she does have some guilt about what she has done in the past. She helps Arita is overcoming his personal scars and both of them are determined to find out the reason of why Burst Brain exists.

In the end, the anime was fast-paced, engaging and exciting to watch. The game-style elements dominant throughout the anime will interest computer game lovers who are into anime. The story is quite good, but lacks a proper ending that would satisfy the climatic arc towards the end of the series. There were also some humorous moments to be had and mysterious characters to explore. I would be happy if a sequel was released to expand the story even further.

STORY: 7
It was fast, exciting and interesting. Emotional in many ways and explores the values and morals of friendship.

ART: 8
The characters and backgrounds were highly detailed and aesthetically pleasing.

SOUND: 8
Voice acting was pretty good for most of the characters. Some characters' voices felt too similar to be a coincidence.

CHARACTER: 8
The main characters slowly grow on you, and you will come to like them a lot. I was instantly captivated by Kuroyukihime.

ENJOYMENT: 9
I felt the story invoked a lot of emotion and feeling to the audience and I will not deny that. The action was also quite good and exciting to watch.

OVERALL: 8
A well compiled anime perfect for otaku guys that are into computer games and imaginative sci-fi stuff.