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Log Horizon 2 – 17

「オデュッセイア騎士団」 (Odeyusseia Kishi-dan)
“Odyssey Knights”

Roe2-oneesan and Dariella have joined your party! One of those was probably a bad idea.

Silly Talk, Serious Talk

If I’ve had any criticism about the last few episodes—no, criticism isn’t the right word. If I’ve had any concerns, it was that Log Horizon was spending too much time on comedic slice-of-life bits that, while enjoyable, are not why most of us watch this series. This episode had a better balance though, combining funny, fluffy, character-revealing antics with the asking of interesting questions about the world and various people’s role in it.

Favorite Foods, Roe2-oneesan, & Love Talk

On the silly side of the street, there was plenty to enjoy. Roe2′s offer to help Minori’s group provided they call her onee-san comes screaming to mind, if only because I’ve been doing that for years and where does she get off!? *fumes* But rage at an animated character aside, while Roe2 is a fairly one-note character so far, it was a lot of fun, and fun is why we read most stories, right?

Speaking of one-dimensional, I liked both Shiroe’s love for mapo tofu and the sauce discussion the young group had. If you recall the Kurt Vonnegut quote I’m so fond of repeating: “Every sentence must do one of two things—reveal character or advance the action.” Little things like this are what take all these characters and make them multi-dimensional people instead. After all, the people you know in real life all probably have favorite foods (and disliked foods), right? Plus the look of sheer joy on Shiroe’s face and Serara’s weird mayonnaise fetish rank on the funny-o-meter to boot.

Best of all, though, was the love talk. (And during an onsen scene that wasn’t mined for fanservice in the least. Gasp!) I want more of this! Serara’s delusions are getting even more vivid, and Minori knows the kind of competition she has. But why does Isuzu have to be so dense? *slams head on desk* I mean, at least both Isuzu and Rudy are being dense, but they’d be such a good couple guuuuuuuuhhh just kiss already!!

Income Inequality & Disturbing The Voices Of Adventurers’ Hearts

But the second half of the episode had plenty of the more meatier issues that Log Horizon is known for. I mean, how many anime tackle income inequality in a fantasy world? Most counties in the real world don’t have a great grasp on that issue, much less a bunch of gamers. It’s an interesting question, but I’m more curious why Ein is pushing so hard to help the poorer elements, given the troubles within Honesty we had last week. It could be simple altruism, sure, but it doesn’t feel like that to me.

Probably my favorite thing about that whole bit? I could go on a spiel about how it’s actually a good idea to reveal recipes, just like Elon Musk and Tesla Motors released all their patents, but that’s for sophisticated strategic-level business reasons that even most business people don’t grasp. No, it’s the fact that Shiroe wished Krusty was there. Shiroe is sharp, but he’s not all-powerful, and that’s definitely more of a Krusty problem.

The other big thing is the appearance of Nureha, in her Dariella guise, and the The Mobile Temple of Boreas held by the Odyssey Knights. More than the income inequality jazz, which I could opine a few solutions to based on successful real world examples, this is the kind of Log Horizon-specific problem that gets my blood pumping. Adventurers are already like a zombie horde, throwing themselves at problems over and over again, with not even death being enough to stop them, but this mobile shrine lets the Odyssey Knights do that x1000. But maybe zombie is the right word, because the Odyssey Knights do not look healthy. I have no idea where Touno-sensei is going with this, but I definitely want to know.

Looking Ahead – The Secret of Music

Looks like we’re going to delve into more Log Horizon-specific issues next week, with the secret of this world’s music. Mostly I’m wondering what’ll happen with Tohya, now that he’s finally found a love interest. Don’t do it, Tohya! She’s bad news. You’re smarter than—oh, who am I kidding. He’s young. Of course he’s going to fall for it.

tl;dr: @StiltsOutLoud – Roe2 is a lot of fun, and NPC-Nureha is back to crush Tohya’s innocent young heart. Talk about heaven and hell #loghora s2e17

Random thoughts:

  • Adventurers’s wounds heal quickly, and they have self-cleaning functions. That attention to detail continues to be killer. The best character in this story is the world, and that’s saying something considering the rest of the cast.
  • Stilts note: Expect the next two posts to appear on Sunday or Monday. Thank you for your understanding.

My first novel, Wage Slave Rebellion, is available now. (More info) I also published a FREE sequel short story. Over at stephenwgee.com, the last four posts: My lost job, and the beginning of my travels, Feedback from family, Be the best you can be, and Watch your reaction.

Full-length images: 14.

 

Preview

February 2, 2015 at 1:58 am
74 comments »
  • February 2, 2015 at 2:18 amP Ko

    It’s sad how tedious and dull this series has become.

    Also, fuck Deen and it’s atrocious animation.

    • February 2, 2015 at 2:52 amTechim

      Differences in character art aside, I’m actually okay with how the story of Season 2 is going.
      I haven’t read the LN story arc focusing on the junior Log Horizon members, and this anime adaptation of it seems just fine.

      Haven’t read the LN Kanami arc too, but yeah, the anime version seems quite rushed.

      • February 2, 2015 at 8:38 amqwert

        It isn’t even an issue of the character art any more. The animation for chunks of this episode was just atrocious. Just watch the scene where they were eating and look at some of their faces. When Serara was scooping her mayo her face looks like a vaguely head shaped blob and her movement is a horrible jerky loop that it looks like they only half animated and then said fuck it.

    • February 2, 2015 at 10:01 amLonghaul

      You are confusing animation and art, for example the part in the beginning where Nureha was spinning around after transforming was one of the best animated scenes in the whole series.

      • February 2, 2015 at 12:43 pmP Ko

      • February 2, 2015 at 3:59 pmLonghaul

        You appear to be making the same mistake. Character art =/= animation.

      • February 3, 2015 at 8:05 amP Ko

        The animation is just as bad with constant stills and jerky movements.

        Good Lord.. There’s r/anime claiming Kill La Kill is the best dub ever and now people are defending fucking DEEN. It’s like I’ve woken up in a world where everybody is now a moron.

      • February 3, 2015 at 12:46 pmLonghaul

        Your black and white view apparently blinds you to the scene I mentioned as an example.

    • February 2, 2015 at 1:10 pmLyfe

      The problem being that the first season didn’t sell that well in Japan. There was always going to be a downgrade in animation because of it. I’m just grateful a studio picked it up and gave it a go. I would rather have LH Season 2 in this state than not at all. They also did a decent job on the battle scenes and raid stuff. Anyway LN 10 will be covered this season.

  • February 2, 2015 at 2:27 amDwarg

    • February 2, 2015 at 6:41 amRandom Comment

      Actually, that’s Wolf, one of the protagonists from the TRPG replay novel. Still his appearance might have been inspired by Man with a Mission =3

  • February 2, 2015 at 2:46 amCorin

    Eh… given that Honesty is supposed to count a significant percentage of the population in their membership, and given that apparently a good chunk of that membership appears to belong in the ‘disadvantaged low productivity lower income group’ Ein seems so concerned about (that, as we can guess from last week, is probably the same unhappy majority that his guild is having trouble with)… is it really any wonder he’s advocating extreme socialism?

    • February 2, 2015 at 9:37 amRedRocket

      Additionally sticky problem this has been stated as a problem of people who work hard but don’t have the talent and/or desire to move into the well paid areas. In part many might be of the just want to go back to their old life people and those who can’t take the pain you suffer from combat and the torment of the resurrection process. But hard working people do have the motivation to cause real problems when they don’t feel their work is being rewarded enough.

      In our world this problem often is too week unions so that the workers don’t get their share of productivity gain profits. (To strong union rights combined with union abuses can result in no one making money not the problem here) But there does not seam to be a problem in the successful production guilds so profits from new ideas are probably being shared to all guild members involved the problem is those outside of successful production guilds and those who will not get into making money the MMO adventure way.

      They actually are doing the right thing trying to get these people into adventure training and various activities. They just have to get more creative with this and some northern Europe socialism where the taxes on the well off redirect money into education, infrastructure and the arts but at sustainable levels and not borrowing to much to do it.

      Of course another good solution is a good old big war to suck all the problems into the draft and give an outside distraction and it looks like another power is about to provide that solution.

      I have not actually studied a historical war to relive pressures from income inequality being done as knowing move by the leadership, the wars are fought for more stupid reasons that. Although in some cases it might be a society unconscious driving wars for this reason.

    • February 2, 2015 at 1:37 pmStilts

      @ Corin

      Good point. I probably shouldn’t try to write a post at 3am. I forget blindingly obvious things sometimes :X

    • February 2, 2015 at 4:26 pmPancakes

      @RedRocket

      What you’ve mentioned is right, it is not a problem simple wealth redistribution can solve. Much like what most of the Western world is struggling with right now The Round Council now faces the issue how to stave off potential revolt without gutting the areas responsible for wealth (technology) generation in the first place.

      Releasing patents as Stilts mentions or stripping accounts over a certain amount and redistributing it equally won’t solve the problem, it only changes it. Innovation would be discouraged and there would be an increase in “tax” avoidance and emigration as wealthy (and thus intelligent) individuals and guilds look to keep their profits and intellectual rights. Not to mention the biggest issue of all, the Round Council now becomes the target of both the poor’s frustration at still not getting enough (what does one think will happen when all that free gold has been spent?) and the innovators’ wrath for working hard only to have the rewards taken from them by government and given to those who did not contribute. Such a setup is how the French Revolution came to be.

      Compromising is the best solution considering the circumstances with Marielle in the right, however Bread and Games is not enough by itself. Targeted recruitment and training programs, city projects, quests, paid exploration, basic welfare, there are numerous options available to soak up displaced and angry people still lacking a proper place in the LH world. Ironically the guild Horizon has done a good job of player recruitment, but hasn’t implemented the second step of giving all these people a job (thus the socialist proposal). If everyone who wants to work to earn (but currently cannot for whatever reason) has the opportunity the simmering discontentment in Akihibara becomes negligible; anyone still refusing takes all the blame for having shunned an opportunity given to them.

      • February 2, 2015 at 6:54 pmFL

        I think you are vey right in saying that what the round table needs is increased government spending to generate more jobs in the economy, not unlike what Obama tried to do in the US, the big problem is the spending portion of that government spending. As Shiroe rightfully pointed out to Eins, the round table does not have infinite funds nor does it have backing from PoL nobles to implement very costly policies. The problem they are facing can be seen to be quite similar to what a lot of developing nations go through where the costs of development prevent them from going through with it even though there is a desperate need for development. Thankfully Akiba has some very smart leaders with very good moral codes that has prevented corruption from taking place, however the process of getting a developing nation firmly on its feet is one that can take many years and much trial and error to solve

      • February 4, 2015 at 7:24 pmAvatar

        The thing is, you don’t necessarily have to compete with top-tier players – it’s not like there’s something that says “you must open your Cheap Furniture For Poor Adventurers shop next door to the Crusty’s D-D-Discount Emporium”. If anything, those adventurers have opportunities unlike anything they’ve ever known in the real world; there are tons of People of the Land that can pay them to do all sorts of things, because they’re as far above the Landers as the level 90s are above them. Go out and adventure, escort some wagons, go find a village and keep it clear of monsters while you learn woodworking or cooking or -farming-, for goodness’ sake. The sky is the limit (maybe not even that!) for any adventurer with some initiative who’s willing to come out of Akiba and make something of themselves.

        And that’s the problem.

        The show isn’t talking about “here is the base economic reality” as much as it’s making social commentary. These aren’t 15,000 Eagle Scouts – it’s a selection of fairly hard-core players of a ten-year-old MMO. Some of them are able to adapt to the new world by treating it as an extension of their gaming (your raid guilds, for example, still think of themselves as raid guilds; the fact that it’s now “real” hasn’t changed their objective structure much.) Other people have managed to adapt in ways that they never knew they could from back in reality. In a lot of ways, that’s Shirou’s story, no? He’s taking a leadership role that he’d specifically avoided in the past, not least of which because it involved the assumption of responsibility he didn’t feel he needed.

        And some people have brought their social problems with them. The same thing that had them staying in and playing a game is keeping them in Akiba, as unproductive as they were back home as NEETs in Japan. They don’t LIKE going outside, they don’t LIKE dealing with people, they don’t want to do these things, and so saying “well, all you have to do is go out there and seize the opportunity!” is kind of a slap in the face to these guys. On top of that, some of them are going to legitimately fear failure, and in a sense, the stakes are raised quite a bit. You go out in a game and do a low-level quest, and you fail and die, and you get back up and try again. But if you go live in a little village as their resident blacksmith and protector, and six months later you go down to ogres? You wake up in the Cathedral, knowing that you’ve just failed and real people who were relying on you are dead now. That’s… a lot of pressure; some people just won’t want to be in that kind of position no matter what.

        In a lot of ways, what these people need isn’t money, it’s mentoring. Someone to take them under their wing and give them the confidence that the skills at their disposal are enough to go out and take on the world (intelligently, of course, not just aiming at a dragon and Leeroying in…) And that is probably why we have the newbie story, because that’s what Log Horizon has done for them. They’re not just out to get a bag, something that they could have managed in a short time with the high-levels to hold their hands; they’re taking their knowledge and confidence and striking out on their own.

        So Akiba needs… Shiroe, basically, and a bunch of him at that. And that’s going to be hard, hard, hard to do, because it’s not a role that’s productive in the short term, or in any kind of monetary sense, and you can’t rely on people to do it out of self-interest alone. So can they take people who are in raiding guilds and crafting guilds and convince them that the spiritual rewards of surrogate fatherhood are enough?

    • February 2, 2015 at 10:55 pmNetto

      While I would usually advocate a progressive income tax to bolster much of the RTC’s attempts to address the issue, a sales tax on products might be more appropriate to address the issue.

      Then again, the reason why this really is an issue of motivation is that as was mentioned during the RTC debates, the adventurers themselves already have a set floor for a lifestyle considering how relatively easy it is to grind gold off the fields. There really isn’t that much of a problem of social services considering much of the services being available to serve adventurers relatively free and the fact that they can get healed pretty easily.

  • February 2, 2015 at 2:46 amNex

    Honestly the whole thing with Tohya has me really curious, he’s been needing some attention for a while now.

    While it’s clearly double-extra-one-sided since Nureha is assuming a disguise, these are two of the last characters I expected to even meet. They make an interesting duo though, from the snippets we’ve seen or heard, Tohya and Nureha both have their reasons to prefer this new world to their harsh reality.

  • February 2, 2015 at 2:50 ammahoushounen

    many of Honesty new member see drain on the guild resource. Ein liker try get other foot the bill and kept new people in the guild stay in power in Akihabara. i can easy this stage than Plant Hwyaden make push soak up those fail behind bid weakening the Round Table Alliance

  • February 2, 2015 at 2:52 amErimaki

    Ah, the eternal sauce problem, solved by Roe2-nee-chan in one move.
    Serara seems to like some food with her mayo.

    The vampire subclass seems pretty useless; weaker under sunlight and can’t be healed? No wonder she wants to change it.
    Her rant about it was pretty interesting though.

    Hooray to the non-fanservice ofuro scene!! Banzai!

    I don’t remember if this came from the early LNs or Mamare notes, but Honesty is the kind of guild that posts strategy guides about raids and stuff on the net for free. It could be that it’s just in the leader’s nature to do this stuff.
    But having a lot of “leechers” in his guild is likely part of the reason; if nothing is done, his guild is likely the first to fall, but if he does it as a guild-policy, the non-leechers will very likely leave.

    One bit about Odyssey Knights that was mentioned in one of the LNs covered in season 1:
    Show Spoiler ▼

    Also, don’t worry Stilts, you’re everyone’s onii-chan in our hearts.
    Just take the Aoi Toori approach and say we’re all being tsundere about it =D

    • February 2, 2015 at 3:03 amSMinstrel

      I think the sub-class *might* have some yet-to-be-revealed upside, such as life drain or become stronger in the night or something. None has been revealed thus far though (Anime or Novel).

      • February 2, 2015 at 8:08 amErimaki

        It probably does, I agree.
        It’s just that the weakening under sunlight is something really huge now that most of the everyday life happens during the day. It wouldn’t have been that much of an issue back when Elder tales was still a game.

      • February 2, 2015 at 5:29 pmMonimonika

        Roe2 did briefly mention that the vampire subclass was useful on the moon.

        Me watching ep: ‘Did she just say she came down to earth from the moon? The test server moon!? Isn’t that where the deceased adventurers stop by before resurrection? What the heck is going on up there!?’

    • February 2, 2015 at 1:41 pmStilts

      There are some upsides to the Vampire subclass. Click the spoiler for more:
      Show Spoiler ▼

  • February 2, 2015 at 3:16 amboingman

    That Serara spoon animation. Wow, that looked bad. Animationwise possibly the worst episode yet?
    This episode was a bit better, but I really didn’t care about the slice of life food and love talk. Took too much time away from the more interesting part.

  • February 2, 2015 at 3:22 amewok40k

    Well, the world of Log Horizon is actually close to “ideal capitalism” – people earn based on own work and invention, not on “owning” and “inheriting” things… nor lending money for percent. all millionaires are actually self-made, but look no further than the earlier blues with exp potion extorting guilds to see things wont be so rosy forever…
    still, there would be giant advantage in making more population active in both crafting and hunting/gathering, even if it meant some kind of organised wealth re-distribution – but it need to be careful to avoid pitfall of creating underclass dependent on welfare…

    meanwhile, we can wonder who exactly is controlling Roe2? And BTW what happened to all alt characters out there?

    and Nureha in disguise joining young adventurers… oh boy this can mean trouble…
    especially when certain someone is so enchanted by her…

    also, loved all the girls love delusions!

    • February 2, 2015 at 4:54 amTori_no_uta

      If you consider the apocalypse the starting point for all the adventurers its actually pretty unfair. Just compare someone like Krusty to a new player. Krusty on day one of the apocalypse had so many advantages compared to a new player be it in level, items, gold, professions or even his guild or the sheer amount of knowledge of the world he is in that you could truly say he was born with a silver spoon.

    • February 2, 2015 at 7:34 amAzsurance

      You mentioned something interesting – alts.

      I think this is something that’s fairly common in the MMO world, making multiple characters on the same account for various reasons, be it farming, getting the same quest rewards, etc…

      But now that in this universe, everyone is stuck in the virtual world, makes you wonder what happened to those alts.

      • February 3, 2015 at 4:35 pmnyanlol

        some weird gut feeling tells me roe2 was a shiroe alt. roe2 feels like an alt-name someone created on the fly, like those times when your username choice is rejected so you just add a number to the end out of laziness or attachment to the name

      • February 5, 2015 at 3:38 pmVagrant

        What strikes me as even more than alts coming alive is that it also implies that characters not logged in during the apocalypse could come alive.

        The bots I’d understand as they were logged in at the time.

        But if an alt come come to life then that means those not logged in could also come alive, albeit with PoTL mindset? in the sense that they don’t have memories of the real world?? o_o???

  • February 2, 2015 at 4:57 amDude

    No such thing as income gap in a world where resources are infinite. Respawning monsters and unlimited gold.

    • February 2, 2015 at 8:09 amFL

      Not really, starvation and malnutrition are problems in our world even though we have the capability to produce over 10 times the amount of food necessary for all people in the world. It ultimately comes down to how income is distributed in the system and what means people have to collect income.

      Since the establishment of the round table, there has been a technological boom in Akiba that has driven inflation, as a cycle of people earning more to buy goods and people charging more as people get richer increases the cost of living in the country. While this was what Shiroe hoped for, as the inflation in the economy gave people reason to work and not mope around, not everyone had the means to survive in this environment.

      A person working on his own to make furniture doesn’t make things fast enough or quickly enough compared to someone working in an assembly line. Similarly a single person hunting can’t compete against a large group whom can hunt for larger more profitable game. Smaller groups find it difficult to compete with larger groups economies of scale.

      Added to this the limitations that people have compared to others, not everyone is able to tell what sort of product people will need and want to buy or may not have the skill sets necessary to perform tasks that are in high demand in the economy (Remember besides game skill you need IRL skill any given task to do something in the game e.g. terrible chief will make terrible food even with a lvl 90 cooking skill). clearly defined classes and sub-classes still existing also doesn’t help as it makes it difficult for people to use and thrive in niche positions.

      Considering all this it is honestly surprising that income inequality exists or that the round table is having a hard time dealing with this, Guild leaders are not economists and politicians and are inexperienced with macro issues of this kind. Even existing 1st world countries suffer from problems like his all the time

      • February 2, 2015 at 11:15 amSMinstrel

        Wow, this is surprisingly deep…Even though I already know LH can be very ‘deep’, it never fails to amaze me.

      • February 2, 2015 at 1:43 pmStilts

        Nicely laid out, FL. Thank you

      • February 2, 2015 at 4:01 pmSolaris

        FL wrote a nice piece, but even thought Round Table is trying to create an economical system similar to real life, Elder Tale is this is still a MMORPG. Major income comes from monster hunting and raid and that indeed ignites a simplified economical model economy.

        This part regarding Honesty clan issue is unresolved matters from the very first arc when people was too scared to go hunting and earn their share after the Apocalypse. The Goblin King incident also had the same root. Now the problem of yet another infamous mmorpg stereotype has been introduced and linked to the problem: The leecher.

        It’s as simple as that.

      • February 5, 2015 at 6:33 amVagrant

        FL wrote a nice piece, but even thought Round Table is trying to create an economical system similar to real life, Elder Tale is this is still a MMORPG. Major income comes from monster hunting and raid and that indeed ignites a simplified economical model economy.

        This part regarding Honesty clan issue is unresolved matters from the very first arc when people was too scared to go hunting and earn their share after the Apocalypse. The Goblin King incident also had the same root. Now the problem of yet another infamous mmorpg stereotype has been introduced and linked to the problem: The leecher.

        It’s as simple as that.

        @Solaris
        Although you are correct that the problem is rooted in inability of some players adapting to the post apocalypse world you are viewing things over simplisticly.

        You probably forgot to take into account certain things.

        First, as Log Horizon has been trying to point out since last season is that this isn’t an MMORPG anymore.

        Nothing functions according to script alone anymore. Though monsters might retain some of their drops, their tactics and spawn have the possibility to evolve, therefore the means to engage them.

        NPC’s are now sentient and mortal, that entails quests could change, reards may no longer be proportional to the risks. They can refuse to give quests, they can die.

        You no longer have an infinite, stable source for resources as a traditional MMORPG.

        Second, not everyone stuck in the game are experienced “Elitist Jerks” like those within the round table elite.

        Their experience ranges from basic understanding of the UI/controls maybe to some generic levelling and grinding. I doubt many are equipped and knowledgable enough in MMORPG’s to adapt to the post apocalypse situation.

        The people are demotivated, and depressed not only because of the “dead economy” as laid out in season 1. These players aren’t equipped with the skills, knowhow, to adapt to the changing world.

        This is where the round table should come in. They need to provide these players with the tools (the confidence, skills, knowhow, etc.) to adapt and live within the post apoc world.

        They need mentorship and leadership. Not much different in a govt. investing in an education, livelihood, housing, and medical program.

        Third, as any veteran MMORPG player will tell you, grinding on raids and farming on monsters won’t generate wealth. Sure you get loot, but it’s almost always a zero sum game. The loot you get is funneled into repairs, and gear to progress.

        The old system is based on that, you get enough loot to progress game wise. But now that you have to take into account living expenses, and amassing wealth, farming raiding alone will not be enough.

        In all my MMO’s my wealth always, came from playing the market. Flipping trade goods, crafting whats needed per expansion, and a bloody competition with other traders undercutting and such. Knowledge and experience you don’t just comeby from playing the game alone. You accumulate this from other websites and discussions with other players outside the game.

        If farming were enough, there wouldn’t be need for 10′s to 100′s of bots needed just to amass wealth for someone to sell gold for real money.

        Also raids are usually limited, and you cannot simply toss a player in a raid and expect them to function like an actual raid team. And with the penalties of death now, the new logistic challenges, you can’t expect “casual players” to raid and farm in a world they’ve barely adapted to.

        I’m not learned in economics, but I’ve noticed enough that certain real world economics apply also in MMO. And with merchant/raiding/PvPguilds as big and powerful as those in round table, I can understand why smaller guilds and solo players can’t compete and therefore can posibly cause problems for just basic living expenses.

        It’s not a game anymore.

        The Round Table needs to do what Shiroe did for Minori and Touhya’s party. Educate them, teach them, mentor and nurture them , and to a certain extent provide for them (at least at the start) to be indipendent so they can adapt and thrive in the present world.

        tldr
        That the problem indeed stems from the demotivation of certain players (I won’t call all of them leechers, although some might be), what FL posted is a good analytical look of the symptoms, complications and future problems caused by that demotivation. And the means to bring about a solution rests within the Round Table, and the economy plays a big part in it.

      • February 5, 2015 at 6:41 amVagrant

        On a different note, I just thought it interesting that Honesty’s guildmasters proposal for a fix was an apt reflection as to the experience, and mind set of those he represents.

        They’re lost, not knowledgable enough in MMORPG’s/Elder Tale enough beyond the basics (midgame?) that they don’t know how progress endgame and onwards. To develop overskills, logistic setups to match the economic powerhouses of the merchant/pvp/raid centric guilds.

        I think Honesty’s real contribution to the round table won’t just be their numbers but the fact they have a bead on the pulse and represent your average casual/newbie MMORPG players guild.

        While Crescent Moon represents the small family/friend circle casual MMO guilds, Honesty represents those large public, invite anyone type guilds.

      • February 5, 2015 at 12:00 pmKrono

        @Vagrant

        The problem is the Round Table did make some attempt to offer education/training for the lower level characters. That was what the whole “training camp” from the first season was about. They got maybe a few dozen taker, out of hundreds of low level players. We don’t know if they tried such efforts again, but they’ll quickly hit a point of diminishing returns as all the people interested in leveling up do so. The remainder would be people flat out uninterested in going out and fighting things.

        That’s just the low levels. Once you get up into the mid levels, you’ll have people that damn well should have all the tools they need to hit level 90, but simply aren’t using them. Getting them to get up off their butts and go out will be rather more difficult as it’s no longer a matter of education, but a matter of motivation.

      • February 5, 2015 at 3:14 pmVagrant

        @Krono
        Hmm.. yeah I see your point. I honestly haven’t considered the diminishing returns that much.

        Although true that mid-levels should have the tools and knowledge they need to progress that isn’t always the case. I actually wonder just how much of the information the Round Table has gathered is actually available to the public.

        For example the memory trade off on death was spread only as rumor, I’m assuming the same goes for flavor text. By keeping it a rumor (although I understand the why behind it) isn’t it in a way denying the larger population the knowledge they need to understand and come to grips with part of the tools they need to progress/thrive.

        Take WoW for example. Simply grinding your way to mid level even max level doesn’t instantly make you an end content player. God knows how many people fail at even 5-man dungeons, hence Blizzard keeps toning down difficulties to the least common denominator.

        You actually have to invest time outside the game to learn about raiding from other sources. Does Akiba have this for the post-apoc world.

        Also, even if you do have mid levels equipped with the knowledge and skills, a solo or small group of these players can’t compete with the large guilds production output. And that’s kinda demotivating.

        They’ll be dwarfed and displaced in no time.

        The way I see it, despite the diminishing returns the Round Table will probably need to enact incentives, policy after policy to help solve the various demotivation problems until they’ve weeded out the true leechers.

        Right now they’re just a big massive blob of players stuck in the middle without the means to figure out how to get out of their rut.

  • February 2, 2015 at 5:54 amtoti

    The first season wasn´t the most beatiful series, but thanks to Deen, the second one look awfull, just look at Nureha´s hand in the first picture, and the animation (or the lack of it) is, well bad.
    Now is oficial, i hate Studio Deen.

    Anyway even if this arc is too slow, there are enough things to keep me interested…

    • February 2, 2015 at 6:14 amfrez

      Blame NHK and their crappy budget for season 2. There is a good chance that this was the reason they changed the studio. Maybe Satelight simply said nope, so they asked Studio Deen. They are not among the best, but they could do much better than this with more money.

      • February 5, 2015 at 11:50 amthatone

        I think the change to DEEN is instead because of a mobile game that’s coming out at the end of the month. Considering that GREE is making it, and has made several games off of series that DEEN had adapted in the past, it’s possible that there was some usage of connections to get an LH game.

        Also, as an aside, the pacing of the story wouldn’t be DEEN’s fault. DEEN is purely in charge of animation, the story is controlled and directed by the same people as last season. And if you think that last season had amazing animation, you’re putting on nostalgia goggles.

  • February 2, 2015 at 8:24 ams_w

    A lot of people are romanticizing the art in season 1 as if it was some sort of Ghibli thing, but the art in season 1 and the animation as well were pretty spotty in places and in others downright terrible. (Rudy, where’s your nose???) Deen isn’t any better, but honestly, if you’re worried about the art and animation in this series, I think you’re obsessing over the wrong thing. This has always been a story- and character-driven series done with a small budget for art.

    Now if this were an empty-headed harem anime (or a 4th-wall-busting teardown of the genre), a KyoAni moeblob-fest, or an idol anime airing late at night and aimed squarely at otaku, then I’d agree– the art should be pretty, and the animation should be smooth. (Or at least it shouldn’t suck.)

    But this is a 5PM Saturday NHK anime aimed at little kids, and not a calculated bid to sell BDs to otaku. So the budget is going to suck, and so is the art/animation. After 40-odd episodes, you should know this by now.

    • February 2, 2015 at 1:46 pmStilts

      Have to agree. The animation slipped multiple times during the first season. Yes, it hasn’t been as good this season, but neither of them have had good animation. They just don’t have the budget for it. DEEN is probably even more handicapped in this than Satelight was, since Log Horizon didn’t get lucky and sell like gangbusters.

      • February 2, 2015 at 2:42 pmLyfe

        I actually hope DEEN stick around for a third season, and perhaps give the budget an increase. It’s clearly a budget show, but even then, this is better than nothing. If DEEN don’t want to do it, A-1 pictures would be a good shout, they do the new Fairy Tail anime and despite it not having a big budget, its passable.

      • February 2, 2015 at 9:01 pmSMinstrel

        The eternal problem of ‘good show flopped, while crappy show sells like hotcakes’. Duh..

      • February 3, 2015 at 1:06 pmLonghaul

        Neither season has been well animated as a whole, which makes the handful of well animated scenes a treat for those that care about that sort of thing.

      • February 4, 2015 at 9:41 amLyfe

        Pretty much this. Though Satelight put more effort into the character designs. Would any of the 3 people who downvoted me for wanting DEEN back for a Season 3 care to suggest another studio who could do better for 25 episodes for a series that was averaging 2k sales first week per BD volume in Japan? There are quite a lot of studios that wouldn’t even think of doing a sequel to anything selling below 5k. At this point, as long as we get a third season of Log Horizon I genuinely don’t care who does it.

      • February 4, 2015 at 9:55 amLyfe

        Opps meant to say around 3k per volume.

    • February 2, 2015 at 4:07 pmSolaris

      The problem is this season is even worse than the former. DEEN is infamous for ruining a lot of potentially marvellous titles. That is known and sad fact.

      The series being for kids is no excuse for a crappy job.

    • February 2, 2015 at 6:57 pmErimaki

      I believe that part of the reason for all the complaints is that it’s DEEN doing the art & animation.
      I honestly doubt we would hear about the art as often if it was any other studio, even if the actual people working on it and their result was exactly the same.

    • February 3, 2015 at 3:59 pmVoyager

      This episode may be the worst animated one up until now.
      Yet, we are entering the middle part of this season, that’s where the budget is spared in favor of the later episodes, expecially the final ones that people would remember better as representative of the series. And in a low-budget series, the lowest-budget episodes just look like this one. We have to deal with it.
      But looking at the bright side, quality is probably going to improve soon enough :)

      To say the truth, it still hurts to see such a good anime treated so badly … I wish there were more people supporting it (said the one that didn’t buy the BDs), I wonder if Log Horizon would have sold better if it was aimed to adults instead of kids. It surely could have been, it’s far deeper than most of the other ones.

  • February 2, 2015 at 9:47 amRedRocket

    I wonder if Minori should be worrying about a Roe2 x Shiro development. After all Roe2 shares a lot in common with Shiro it looks like and many people are attracted to others with similar characteristics. ;)

    • February 2, 2015 at 1:46 pmStilts

      Roe2 isn’t headed to Akiba, so probably don’t have to worry about that one.

    • February 2, 2015 at 6:47 pmDuzz

      Show Spoiler ▼

      Stilts edit: Use spoiler tags, please

  • February 2, 2015 at 11:18 amDuzz

    Their problem is that they have lazy casual gamers who expects to be carry and don’t want to work in a guild and get snippy when they can’t get all the best equipment. Those are entitled people. I don’t think they even have to Eat in Log Horizon and adventuring is still available, monster farming is also available and if they really want to, they can apply for any top teir guild and work their way up from it.

    It all depends on their dedication. Sitting on your ass and waiting for a carry is their issue.

    • February 4, 2015 at 12:45 amWorldwideDepp

      Probably this “Lame asses” Chars was Mules for the Main chars. That was logged in on a 2nd Pc at that time. Then how you explain the “Cleric” China Farmer bot of the other Team? So, this “lame asses” could be alts or bots that works for Mains. You could also say, they are Servants that forgotten their Master

  • February 2, 2015 at 12:26 pmlaaa

    Last 3 episodes been very lame and weak
    I hope they improve quality soon
    I cannot bare to watch children playing around

  • February 2, 2015 at 3:45 pmAex

    IDK, this is still better than the kids’ first dungeon back in S1. Those three episodes were just boring, these are at least funny.

    On to that disturbing mobile shrine… that thing even looks wrong. Was that the original magic someone in Minami cooked up some time after Shiroe revived Rudy? If so, they need to learn the value of aesthetics. That thing looks like when you die it slurps down your essence then barfs you up.

    (Note, I have no evidence on anything that follows, just a bad feeling) So I’m going to guess the drawback to this thing and why The Odyssey Knights look like junkies is more than being able to die a million times in one spot. I get the feeling that it doesn’t so much link into the revival system of the Cathedrals, but instead bypasses it. No slightly morbid dreams of life and some time on the moon to think about where you went wrong, just “wham, bam, thank you vacuum-ma’am for cramming me back together with no time to get my head around anything before you spit me out.” Maybe I’m over thinking it, but Akatsuki and Shiroe made it seem like the revival system gave them time that they needed to just… be dead before they pushed the “revive” button (anyone else know that feeling from MMO’s?). That mobile monstrosity… I feel like it’s going to be like forced revival with hurricane-wind suction that leaves you with a slight high to get back in the fight, then one hell of a kick in the head.

    • February 3, 2015 at 7:16 amRedRocket

      Plus the people using it have died in losing all there memories maybe along with their self will. Crazy Cultists system to the maximum.

  • February 3, 2015 at 1:24 pmdfp396

    Season 2 is going down, down, down, down…

    • February 3, 2015 at 3:46 pmRedRocket

      I am enjoying it, I like the mix of serious world issues and fun slice of life stuff. But your asking that they skip a lot of source material as this all canon. Not saying you have to enjoy it but removing it would prompt screams of deviating from the source like with the China Arc, and with China they might have been doing a teaser and will make it good later.

  • February 3, 2015 at 9:47 pmrandom viewer

    http://randomc.net/image/Log%20Horizon/Log%20Horizon%202%20-%2017%20-%20Large%2004.jpg
    I thought Shiroe loved curry and meat was the impression.

  • February 4, 2015 at 12:00 amFL

    The biggest problems that seem to be faced by Akiba right now are that a portion of society don’t have the level, skill set or motivation to work hard in this world. If I were the RTC, I think I would do the following

    1. Enforce a small income or corporate tax to firms proportional to the amount they make. By doing this, you increase government revenue and allow for more government based projects without hurting lower income groups too much

    2. Offer tax levees to firms that provide training to the workers. This should allow lesser skilled workers to be employed and trained, thus allowing for higher employment and more people with skill sets that allow them to earn more in this economy

    3. Try and establish trade relations with Susukino. This one is a bit of an interesting decision but I think it should help out; currently Susukino is being run by Silver sword and William Massachusetts whom have close ties with Shiroe, thus trade relations would have a much higher likelyhood of being successful than if organised with antagonistic adventurer cities like Minami and Nakasu. Increased business opportunity from both sides may allow for firms on both sides to expand and take in more labor, furthermore government projects to improve trade routes between Susukino and Akiba will allow for greater employment as well.

  • February 4, 2015 at 12:31 amWorldwideDepp

    Mm, i read some speculation about Roe2 and Shiroe

    Sure the appearance is nearly the same. Perhaps a Fan-boy/girl at the creation time. But for Shiroe secretly playing Roe2. Well there are many hints, that is against it

    “Call me One-sama!” She insist called that from the “kids”. I do not think Shiroe would cross-change the gender that fast :) Even if he is Role playing the Gender :)

    To guide a “Alt” Char, you need to logout your Main, do not you? But Log Out is impossible right now. So Shiroe is forced to stay on his Main. No one can Log out. So if someone is guiding Roe2, then he or she must do it since the Apocalypse. I do not saw any hints, that someone was able to Log-in since then or Log-Out. I think even Rusty-sama got a Random Teleportation of this Scythe. Perhaps a Secret Teleport like Fairy Ring to a Super Duper Dungeon. There should be a “Research” Team ongoing, to get behind the roots of this Weapon. Perhaps then you get a Gist where he is forced teleporting. But until now, the Story line forced him out, and no one is really do the effort to find him

    So, as someones here want Roe2 to be Shiroe in Alt-char Disguise, i must say reality is against it. And btw, he should recognize this “Yellow NPC” Disguise Girl from the start, and i think also that she will use the Boys pheromone (in short Addiction to Girls instincts) to manipulate him, to get closer to Shiroe. Let it be Hostage or turn him into a Friend Destroyer/Berserker

    • February 4, 2015 at 12:34 amWorldwideDepp

      the only hint she left for us, was that she cam from the Moon.. So she could used some kind of Swapping to get to this Server. So the Moon server is not that Isolated on the Moon (if it is really on the Moon)

    • February 4, 2015 at 12:39 amWorldwideDepp

      mm is 2 write in Nippon Shi?

      the her name is Shiroe just backwards. She must be a Fan-boy/girl since the creation of this Char.

      • February 4, 2015 at 3:38 amRandom Comment

        Her name in Nihongo is written as ロエ2. Even when pronounced it’s Ro-Ei-Tsu, not Ro-Ei-Shi.

        FYI =3

    • February 5, 2015 at 3:32 pmVagrant

      I think the implications of Roe2 being a Shiroe alt isn’t that players can jump/control their other characters or that Shiroe is secretly babysitting his kids.

      If bots like Copellia (no player behind them, AI) and NPC’s (AI) can become sentient and come to life, the possibility of an alt character stored in the game database can also come to life is interesting.

      The though of alts coming to life. Mid players having stronger alts than the one they had logged in during the apoc, alts fighting or allied with their originals, etc.

  • February 4, 2015 at 7:57 amweasl

    This episode finally makes me understand this random scene from episode 9.

    http://randomc.net/image/Log%20Horizon/Log%20Horizon%202%20-%2009%20-%20Large%2029.jpg

  • February 4, 2015 at 12:31 pmWorldwideDepp

    I have a felling, if Log Horizon would finally be able to have an Log-out and all these Chars would see them in Real Life, some Dreams would get destryoed. Well until now we know of 3 Real Life faces.

    Aktsuki (in the resurrection Episode)
    Shiroe (some glimpse here and there and resurrection Episode)
    how was the name of his Guardian again?…
    I fear the Dream around this Person, will be gone
    http://randomc.net/image/Log%20Horizon/Log%20Horizon%202%20-%2017%20-%20Large%2012.jpg
    or this “old men” is Gentlemen enough to not crush hard, but with empathy, her Dream. As i said, i still get an “Schoolgirl admire his handsome Teacher” vibes

  • February 4, 2015 at 6:47 pmRob

    I’m not quite clear on Mobile Temple of Boreas…is that just for members of the Odyssey Knights, or would any adventurer be resurrected there if it was the closest temple? Could they enslave people by killing them and not letting them out unless they joined the guild?

    They sure look messed up.

    I wonder if the resurrection process is different somehow? I don’t think it would be enough just for them to die a lot…raiders do too.

    • February 5, 2015 at 12:32 pmWorldwideDepp

      Imagine, these Odyssey Knights would do a Raid.

      The End Boss would be to strong for them. But what you think they have this mobile Resurrection Temple?

      They go in, slash the Boss for 10HPs or so, die and repeat until they worn down the HPs of the Boss.. Thats Exploit the Temple…

      Yes, these kind of Players was also there. but mostly they where drunk when doing it