「接触」 (Sesshoku)

Wow, the pace of this show has been blistering. In three episodes Achiga is where it took Kiyosumi 25 episodes to get. Hell, in this one episode alone they whooped Bansei at the prefecturals, met (and beat) six of the seven runner ups from the other prefectural tournaments (including Ryuumonbochi, their one loss), and arrived at Nationals. Phew! I feel like we just sprinted a mile. I’m worn out!

Let’s start with the prefectural tournament. After the warning last episode, when they were set up against Bansei from the get-go I was expecting a good fight. I didn’t think for a second that Bansei had any monsters on their team which would give Achiga a real challenge, but neither did I expect them to go down so quickly! From the moment Kuro sat down they were completely screwed, and the other girls made sure they never had a chance to stand back up. In a way it was disappointing, but in another way it was really great. Seeing Bansei’s winning streak crushed in the first match was satisfying for reasons I should probably worry about, heh >:D

At that point I was wondering what the reason for the fast pacing was, and then Akado-sensei revealed that they were going to be playing practice matches against the 2nd place schools. “Ohhh,” I thought. “They were blazing past Bansei because they wanted to get to a far better school – Ryuumonbochi!” I was expecting some proper mahjong here…but once again, no. Something very important did happen, though. With Shizu going up against Koromo – and fated to play Saki eventually – I was wondering whether she would break under Koromo’s onslaught. Turns out? Nope. This is why I like honest idiots like Shizu. Where before Akado-sensei broke, Shizu is too much of a baka to be properly frightened of the monster in front of her. We may have missed out on the proper mahjong fun, but I enjoyed the warm fuzzies I got from that.

Then was the training camp, where–oh, no, that passed quickly too. This pacing…well, it’s obvious that this is a spin-off, as they’re sprinting to get Achiga to nationals so they get them near the true main characters of the Saki universe. Kiyosumi is still clearly the main focus of the tournament, as they’re not giving us enough time with Achiga for anyone to seriously root for them over Kiyosumi. That begs the question…what’s the point of this side story?

If I had to guess – and this is conjecture, as I haven’t read either the Saki or the Saki Achiga mangas – they’re doing this because Achiga will be in the opposite side of the national’s bracket from Kiyosumi. That means the point of this spin-off is to use Achiga to explore the schools that Kiyosumi never faces (side note: if this was obvious from the get-go, my apologies…I guess I’m a little slow this time). If that’s the case, it makes sense why we were introduced to fourth seed Senriyama this episode, as they’re liable to be one of the prime antagonists in Achiga’s side of the bracket. In that case, Achiga isn’t being fleshed out enough because they’re not meant to seriously contest the tournament – they just need to get to the finals and play against Kiyosumi for them to have “won.”

This begs the question – which side of the bracket will Miyanaga Teru’s Shiraitodai team be in? If Kiyosumi wants to win, and Achiga wants to play Kiyosumi, then they’d both need to get to the final game, but whoever faces Shiraitodai earlier could get stymied…and call me crazy, but I can’t imagine Kiyosumi playing Shiraitodai until the final match. Though of course, there needs to be four teams for that match, so I guess…AHHHH!! I want next episode to get here already so we’ll know!!

Huh. Well, they might be blazing along so fast that we can’t stop and smell the mahjong tiles, but I still truly enjoyed this episode, and I really want the next one to get here quickly. That sounds like a job well done in my book! Next episode – the crazy mahjong starts in earnest, huzzah!

tl;dr: @StiltsOutLoud – The pace has been blistering, but we’re finally at our destination – Nationals. Old friends & new enemies, here we come! #Saki_Achiga

Random thoughts:

  • Achiga beat six of the seven prefectural runner ups. Not good. Why is that not good, you ask? Because that means all of the monsters, save for Koromo and this girl, made it into nationals. Wuh oh!
  • Kuro may be amazing, but her onee-chan is still the best. HNNNG!!
  • Saki, with an antagonist-like aura? Do not want. I was hoping she would start out menacing, and then morph into her cute and lost form…and then possibly trip. I miss cute dojikko Saki.

Full-size images: 01, 17, 23, 25, 26, 27, 30

ED video will be added whenever I learn how to suck at encoding less. In the meantime, have a sleeping onee-chan, HNNNG!!


ED2 Sequence

ED2: 「Futuristic Player」 by 橋本みゆき (Hashimoto Miyuki)
Watch the 2nd ED!: Streaming ▼


End Card


  1. I still don’t understand why Saki is wearing long skirt. Does that mean shes being clumsy again for picking up someones clothing again or is she reserving her lucky power?
    Oh can’t wait for the next episode.

  2. Because each game is four teams, resulting in one winner going to the next level, there are FOUR “sides” to the bracket. Achiga will be one. Kiyosumi will be another. And Teru’s team will be a third. Who the fourth is remains to be seen.

    1. Wrong. As you will see from the tournament brackets next week, in the quaterfinal and semifinal matches, the best two out of four schools move forward. So there are twelve preliminary matches + four seeds (52 schools total), which feed into four quaterfinal matches (best 16), followed by two semifinals (best 8).

      Stilts, that should answer your question – while neither manga is up to the final, I think we can all figure out how it is going to play out :). I mean the OP even parallels Saki’s first one, with Teru being on top of the pedestal instead of Koromo…

    2. And by the way, if you take a closer look at the Nara tournament bracket in this episode, you can realize that it is set up in a similar way – here there are 32 schools, with 8 preliminary matches feeding into two semifinals – and the best two schools from each semifinal advancing to the final. I guess you did not notice because the anime (as well as the manga) completely skips over the matches :).

      1. Yeah, at first in the manga I was confused by the double-lines and then I realized that they need 4 teams, not the usual two for a game. Meaning top two scoring teams advance.

  3. Saki just wanna fight her sister, and since her sister is playing as vanguard (which is the first player) it’s likely they won’t fight each other in team but in the individual. I won’t be surprised if they even made it like a Saki manga and episode A crossover in the finals for Koyosumi and Achiga battle.

  4. https://randomc.net/image/Saki%20Achiga-hen%20episode%20of%20Side-A/Saki%20Achiga-hen%20episode%20of%20Side-A%20-%2003%20-%20Large%2012.jpg

    Shinzu is a disciple of Cthugga, it would seem. That would make Nadoka her Nyaruko-chan?!


    Still frames? Still frames? When you have such nice textures, still frames are a total cheat.

  5. For the story progression part, the staff are way too faithful to the manga. They could have extend the mahjong playing against Bansei and Ryuumonbuchi, Heck I don’t mind a whole episode to see more of Ryuumonbuchi domination and Koromo’s slaughter again.

    And Yuu getting mobbed was certainly HNNGH worthy. 😀

  6. Ah for Saki’s first appearance, I was expecting ditziness but dark aura is good too. I really can’t see how Shizu could possibly win against Saki. I’d much rather see Kuro against Saki while Shizu plays against her friend Nodoka.
    Also, what was the point of that confrontation with Bansei in the previous ep when all their matches would just go by within a minute? lol Well I don’t mind I guess since I’m really looking forward to the Nationals.

    And glad to see Koromo is still evil cute but I really couldn’t help but smile every time Yuu appeared on screen. ^_^

  7. I love the idea that our cute little Saki appears here as a big, scary monster. As Burns put it, “O wad some Pow’r the giftie gie us / To see oursels as ithers see us!”

  8. Teru’s team is on the same side of the bracket as Achiga, I think it was mentioned in first season of Saki that they’d have to get to the finals to face Teru since they were on opposite sides of the bracket.

    Which is why Teru has had a couple of foreshadowing appearances already.

  9. I was like “wtf” when they mentioned that they managed to get to the finals in just about 10 seconds.

    That “girl” whom they couldn’t beat is one of the “monsters” of Saki! She was featured at the ending of the last episode.

    Oh god. I really hope that Achiga met Kiyosumi’s team. I really want to see our lovable Kiyosumi turn into antagonists.


    Apparently, Saki really did get lost, as shown on this page of the manga (Hisa mentions it):


    right after which comes this page:


    in which she mentions taking Mako’s skirt by accident.


    As for the confusion over the national tournament brackets, here’s a picture:


    I’ve annotated Shiraitodai, Achiga and Kiyosumi for those of us who can’t read kanji.
    Make of what you will of it.

  11. Saki? Alone? Clearly Lost.

    That Antagonist Aura? You’re mistaking it for “Scared Stiff” … Ok, it happens to be the same thing for our Miyanaga flower, but the girls from Achiga aren’t going to know that XD! Hehehehe. I’m kinda disappointed they didn’t introduce themselves and ask to see Nodoka T^T. It’d probably help poor Saki get un-lost too orz;;.

  12. Looks like Achiga will be crushed by Teru and Nodoka swears to win in the name of the power of friendship.

    I wonder if they’ll spin off another series for the last member of that bracket for the semi finals.

    Feeling Saki’s aura of annihilation is the first test to see who’s strong enough. Seems like only 2 passed (and one of them is the teacher)

    Zaku Fan
    1. Nah, a player who can feel other player’s aura means they’re either sensory-type or has supernatural ability as opposed to logic player like Ako. It’s not a measure of strength

      1. What An said. Nodoka is a strong player, but I don’t think she ever sensed that kind of thing (though don’t quote me on that…I’ve gotten a lot of stuff wrong so far this season >_<). Only good players seem to have that sense, but you don't have to have it to be good. Crucial difference.

      2. The Ryumonbuchi glasses girl was a sensory type/supernatural? Because i remember all the Ryumonbuchi players were affected. Also among the Achiga girls there are already supernatural types, unless the way they trashed Bansei is due to normal logic style play.

        Zaku Fan
      3. ^Achiga have at least one supernatural in Kuro the Dora Attractor. And that Kuro opened with a 24,000pts baiman. In the final hand shown, Achiga has close to a 23000pts lead, which means that the other Achiga girls played just well enough to maintain the initial lead. So we have no hints of any more monsters other than Kuro in the Achiga team so far.

        Well, I do hope that some ‘unusual playing styles’ do appear soon enough. That’s one of the points of the show for me…

      4. Can’t be too sure whether Ryuumonbuchi’s Tomoki carries any power since she’s not explored much, but I think she deduced that Saki is a strong player from her ‘looks’. The author also didn’t help to define a clear line by start imbuing logic players with powers too. ~_~

        With the exception of Kuro, at this point of the (anime’s) story we know nothing about other Achiga girls style, unless you’ve read the manga of course.

  13. I haven’t watch “Saki” and I don’t know Mahjong, but yeah! This series is blazing fast! I’m already at odds with the rapid pace premier episode, but this? I can’t believe they are just training last episode and now they are in the nationals! Just wow!

  14. I have to agree on the speed issue. If this series was a back to back to Saki it will make sense to go this fast. However Saki was a couple of years ago so the blazing speed is bugging me. I’ll like to flavor the growth of the characters and their play style (which we know almost nothing). At this speed when any of the players makes a “monster” move, it won’t be that much fun as when Saki and her crew were smashing their opponets. With luck it should slow down so we can actually enjoy the character and each individual play style.

    Saki with long skirt? like they say: WHO ARE YOU!!!! Nopan for life burn those evil long skirts.

  15. only Kuro and Akado could feel Saki shakra since they are the magic type. They others were impressed by the physical aspected since they are the normal type.
    for a moment i though Saki was going to use haki on them.


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