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Tales of Zestiria the X – 07

「それぞれの想い」 (Sorezore no Omoi)
“Their Respective Thoughts”

And now back to our regular scheduled programming…

I feel like I’m one of the few who was actually looking forward to seeing more of the Zestiria story than that of Berseria. Velvet Crowe may be a badass, and Sorey may not be the most exciting protagonist out there, but there’s something about the bright colours, lighter tone, and the cast that we already know that has me more invested in their quests to come. It may be a more traditional story of good vs evil – where Berseria seems to focus on morally ambiguous characters with thirsts for vengeance and shady endgames – but I get enough enjoyment from Sorey and company that I’m glad to have them back.

For better or worse, there’s not actually much new I can say about this episode. What action scenes we got were brimming with energy, the characters are fitting into their roles nicely, and the whole thing is so easy on the eyes. I would go as far as to say it’s gorgeous, but then I realise there’s not that much animation for majority of the scenes. That’s not an uncommon practice in anime, but at least when we do get those swift moments of action it looks stellar; and the background details and character artwork is consistent enough that there’s never a point where things looks actively bad. It’s up there as one of the best-looking shows this season, but then again I’d be cheating if I were to consider it for ‘Best Animation’ once the Best of 2016 post comes around. If we were talking purely about art direction, then it would be a different conversation, but no such category yet exists so it’s a shame.

Mikleo splitting off looked like it was going to create some drama, but in the end this episode was pretty easygoing. Even the opening scenes with the dragon were resolved quickly, and the dinner scene didn’t have as much tension as I’d expect. Knowing we’ve got a second cour coming in the Winter 2017 season, it’s clear we’re setting up for a longer story here. If this were only 12 or 13 episode then I’d be very worried, but we have the luxury of time and consistency here, so there’s very little I can complain about. Even if not much developed in terms of plot, I enjoyed this episode more than last week’s blatant advertisement.

Sorey’s “Chosen One” story may not be the most original or exciting for many, but I’m already sold and interested to see where ufotable are going with this admittedly rough source material. The parallel moments with Sorey and Mikleo were a nice finish to this episode – as well as the very cute flashback to when they were kids – but I expect they’ll be back in each other’s company before too long. We’ve still got plenty of characters from the OP to be introduced and fleshed out, so I expect the ball won’t get rolling until the end of this first season, though I would prefer if that moment came sooner rather than later.

 

Preview

August 22, 2016 at 5:47 pm
27 comments »
  • August 22, 2016 at 6:57 pmRae

    So this episode goes completely off the game path, it’s basically original at this point.
    -There was no tornado dragon. Sorey meets with Bart but gets interrupted by the assassins and then they do a silly escape in the chaos and no one cares afterwards.
    -Alisha suddenly leaves the party with a random note saying she left for Mariland.
    -Sorey sidequests into the ruins that Mikleo went, because the game doesn’t allow for anyone to do anything without Sorey’s point of view basically.
    -Seriously, Alisha got more character building in this one episode than a third of the actual game.

    • August 22, 2016 at 9:10 pmJohn

      They are trying to make it more entertaining, but if they wanted to do that they would have just made Tales of Bestiria in the first place, that one looks way more interesting with the dante demon hand girl, half demon dude and magical girl

      • August 22, 2016 at 9:11 pmJohn

        i meant Nero’s demon hand :P

      • August 23, 2016 at 12:04 amsonicsenryaku

        berseria seems cool but the vibe i get after watching through the games cutscenes is that the writer/s tried a lttle too hard to make velvet this hardened badass with a brooding personality;as a result, her it compromises a bit of her characterization for me and i ended up not liking her that much. It’s like “ooooo…look how dark and edgy our main character is this time compared to the last game”. Shit like that has to be earned through good execution and writing. I dont think it was there in velvet’s case. Ill have to come back to the game when it’s fully translated to get a better understanding of the story beats i couldnt parse in order to make a final decision but as of my initial impression, i didnt really care for velvet. Surprisingly, i like magilou more than her.

      • August 23, 2016 at 12:48 amLin

        After just watching some cutscene and without even knowing the language, I don’t think you can form a valid opinion on the game. I just finished playing it entirely myself and actually know Japanese, and I can tell you the writing is pretty darn good. Velvet’s hardass attitude is fully earned as the game properly fleshes out her backstory and motivations. But the best part is that she’s not a static character. She actually develops and grows as a person. By the last 1/4 of the game she’s considerably less dark and edgy and more heroic, and the change is fully earned too.

        The other key characters are all fully fleshed out too, and everyone gets development and growth.

      • August 23, 2016 at 6:10 amLyfe

        @Lin

        Ehhh.. you finished Berseria already? It only came out August 18.. I wanted to buy the game myself but I’m already occupied with a game and have Persona 5 mid Sept lol. I’m not really one of those people that breezes through an RPG.

        Color me impressed though, you beat the game in 4-5 days?

      • August 23, 2016 at 5:24 pmsonicsenryaku

        @Lin

        I said i watched through the games cutscenes, as in i watched the whole game (never said i watched some cutscenes). With my limited understanding of japanese, i was able to follow some of the dialogue but need translations and plot summaries for the other stuff, so yea i think im good. That being said, I did clarify that my opinion was based on a rough assessment. Regardless, i felt that i had enough to make an early judgment and i did not like some of the character writing in berseria. If you thought the writing was stellar, good for you, i thought it was competent but i wasnt as invested in some of the character’s drama as i would have liked. A big part of that comes from the fact that some of these casts characters werent as relatable and multi-faceted as i would have hoped. Will my opinion change after a second watch? maybe yes, maybe no, but ill commit to that second watch once i either get subtitles or it comes out in english because maybe my opinion will change. The vibe i get as of right now is that if my opinion does change, it may only change slightly but hey, i could be wrong.

      • August 23, 2016 at 10:01 pmLin

        Maybe you weren’t invested because you don’t like the character types. But the execution was great. The game properly shows where Velvet and the other characters are coming from, so every action and development is fully earned. The writers did a pretty good job.

      • August 24, 2016 at 9:18 amsonicsenryaku

        @Lin

        sorry, meant to say i got translations and plot summaries to help me fill in the rest of the details i didnt unnderstand upon my initial watch. Anywho, I dont think the narrative is written badly; there are some enjoyable twist and turns. However it was the character writing that, while competent, didnt grab me this time around like some of the best games in the tales series had.

    • August 23, 2016 at 12:20 amYojimbo

      I guess it’s also one way for them to show all the different locations. I don’t think they would be able to fit it all in if they had simply kept the party together.

    • August 23, 2016 at 4:50 pmSamu

      Wow, sounds like they’re pretty much going for their own story for the anime then, which sounds like the best possible move. Seems as if they’re keeping the characters – perhaps developing them even more than they were in the game – and rewriting all the dud parts. That’s promising.

      • August 24, 2016 at 11:32 amhaseo0408

        Belive that´s good news Samus-san , I just finished the game and share the same opinion as many people, the story was incredible but the character development fell short, many promising characters didn´t recive the attention they should so an original story following the guidelines of the original game sounds great to me.

    • August 24, 2016 at 11:29 amhaseo0408

      Considering what happened to me when I fought a Dragon in the game for the first time it´s miracle Sorey live through this episode, all the dragon had to do was stare at him and it would have killed Sorey, yeah, the bastards are that strong!.

  • August 22, 2016 at 7:22 pmKabble

    I’m qualifying the Berseria episodes as never happening for the time being and I’m looking at this show as a 10 or 11 episode course. This is fine pacing so far and I can’t bring myself to have complaints, there isn’t a metric f ton of things happening but it’s clear that we’ve got a large set up on our way with Mikleo and Sorey tackling two things at once. I prefer Sorey to Velvet simply because it’s easier to map put Velvets character development whereas Sorey strikes me as more of a blank slate of just goodness with well mannered intentions. I’d like to see how his story goes and who he becomes by the end of it tbh.
    Actually, if I had a complaint I’d prefer if the political happenings were a tad more subtle rather than this dude literally working to start a war. Mystery behind his endgame would make for a better story, but at this point I’m just curious as to how Sorey, the legend of the Shepherd, and the seraphim’s will factor into all of these political plays.
    I’m enjoying Alisha’s character too.

    Also, I say we just endorse Sorey and Mikleo as the true otp here cause that’s just the right kind of bromance they got brewing atm.

    • August 22, 2016 at 9:52 pmVVV

      There’s 2 cours.

      • August 22, 2016 at 11:46 pmKabble

        Pardon me, I meant as in this half of the season as a 10 or 11 episode cour

  • August 22, 2016 at 7:27 pmdean

    I think they did the right choice with only given Berseria two episodes. From what I could see so far, it looks like Berseria can stand as it’s own as a game. So only a bit of advertisment is probably all it would need. But with Zestiria, at least for me, I looks like that it needs the Ufotable adaptation. It is really amazing what Ufotable did with the source material. I think when it comes to adaptations, they really are something. Maybe there should be an award for best adaptation of the source material this year. Makes me whish that Ufotable would brand out and make an adaptation of a certain ill-fated manga about a strawberry, but oh well…

  • August 22, 2016 at 7:52 pmGoodwill Wright

    “Could I be your friend?”

    “I don’t get that feeling”

    -Oooo burn~ Good luck licking those wounds. And he says it with such a straight face. Not too sure if it’s a good justification for liking a character but I am loving Sorey on that basis alone.

    • September 3, 2016 at 12:55 pmcryarc

      Sorey’s line means he doesn’t get the feeling that the guy actually wanted to be his friend. “You want to be my friend? That’s not the impression I get.” I think because he’s been living with Seraphim Sorey can somehow read people’s feeling a lot better than normal people.

  • August 22, 2016 at 8:24 pmKamui

    Well, as someone who actually liked the Berseria episodes, and will buy the game next year (even if I already know the entire story) I don’t really mind going back to Zesty. Sorey is a lot better that the people that played the game said he was, and his relationship with Mikleo is great.

    Let’s see if they keep the good work.

  • August 23, 2016 at 12:08 amsonicsenryaku

    Rose and edna need to hurry up and join the party (particularly rose, but thank goodness we’re getting edna next week); it was the moment those two joined the party that the character dynamics became fun to watch. Up until that point, the gang was pretty boring to watch. Dont get me wrong, Lailah’s antics were kinda cute and she has such a lovely character design, but with everybody else being such a bore, i didnt really care for the party.

  • August 23, 2016 at 3:27 amMagnus

    Yeah, I don’t know. I like the cast of Zestiria way more at the moment. Velvet is kind of an edgelord and I wasn’t very invested in her struggle.

    • August 23, 2016 at 4:56 pmSamu

      Agreed. Overall, the Zestiria cast have my interest more.

  • August 23, 2016 at 9:14 ambelatkuro

    http://randomc.net/image/Tales%20of%20Zestiria%20the%20X/Tales%20of%20Zestiria%20the%20X%20-%2007%20-%20Large%2024.jpg
    I was hoping for Alisha to be a bit more surprised when Lailah took that cup and drank it. She can’t see her after all and yet she interacted with the drink. How does that work actually? Does the cup float at all when Lailah touches it?

    And is this the last we see of Alisha? As much as I want to see the other characters in the OP, I want Alisha to join in the journey with Sorey.

    • August 23, 2016 at 4:15 pmTheVoid

      That’s right the cup just floats there in the air. There’s a skit in the game where Mikleo goes around town reading a book with the kind of reaction you’d expect.

  • August 23, 2016 at 2:58 pmTheVoid

    I have to say I like this episode and the way they did, especially Sorey knowing immediately the Politician was trying to use him.

    The Berseria preview episodes I like even if the anime itself changed some things for those two episodes. The Dragon being a Malak Oscar brought with him that got corrupted (High Ranking Exorcists usually have two slave Malaks at their side). The game also had flashback scenes with Seres memories when she gets eaten by Velvet.

    Also knowing Berseria and it’s story does show a big light on things for Zestiria. There’s surprisingly more connections between both than I expected.

  • August 24, 2016 at 8:41 amtheirs

    Really like the Sorey’s and Alisha’s development here. It really made Sorey a lot more interesting for me. Kinda wished they put parts of this a lot earlier. Alisha should quiz Sorey more often.

    Not so sure about Mikleo’s mini quest. Will probably have to wait for next week, but I’m getting suspicious of Lailah. Even though, reading the comments from the game players, there should to be nothing to suspect.

    Considering this is new material, it’s kinda sad they didn’t integrate it better with last weeks episode. The only thing I could think of is that it was the story told in this mural.
    http://randomc.net/image/Tales%20of%20Zestiria%20the%20X/Tales%20of%20Zestiria%20the%20X%20-%2007%20-%20Large%2036.jpg