Random Curiosity

Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha ViVid – 07 »« Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha ViVid – 05

Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha ViVid – 06

「マッチアップ・デュエル」 (Matchi Appu De~yueru)
“Matchup Duel”

It’s explosion-fueled Nanoha battle time. And the victor is … cliffhanger, DAMN!

One on One

I like a good group battle, but for the first part of this episode, it felt more like a series of contiguous duels than a team battle. And I understand why—as an author of magical action myself (link, etc), I can tell you from first hand experience that it’s a lot harder to write a multi-character fight than it is a bunch of one-on-ones. A LOT harder. All the extra variables compound quickly until it’s hard even for the author to keep track of it all—and that’s not even counting having to draw multiple characters in the frame in the source manga. The problem is that a lot of the one-on-ones were kind of boring (Subaru vs Nove, Nanoha vs Teana just shoting at each other), so I think the extra headache is worth the result.

Einhart Is Strong, Vivio Is … Weak?

In the first few episodes, it was nice to see that Einhart was stronger than Vivio, but Vivio could still get in a solid shot or two, because it meant Vivio had a rival she could strive to surmount. After this episode though, Vivio just looks weak. She’s childish in battle where Einhart, Rio, and Corona are not, and she’s so totally outclassed by Einhart, who manages to surprise Nanoha, that it doesn’t even feel like a contest! I feel like Vivio hasn’t really gotten to strut her stuff properly, so this is still “seems weak” rather than “is weak”. I’d like her to start strutting soon, though.

On the other hand, I kind of didn’t like it when Einhart broke free of Nanoha’s binds. I wanted Nanoha to so totally outclass Einhart and show her that she had a lot of room to grow, not have this little kid be nearly on par with the White Devil at her finest. Sure, the Nanoha series has a history of super powerful little girls, but since Nanoha was one of them, I wanted her to wipe the floor with Einhart. She still got blasted, sure, but after embarrassing Vivio, redirecting her blasts, blocking multiple shots from Nanoha, and then breaking her bind, Einhart is starting to look really overpowered. Nerf!

Healing Breaks Everything

Did I miss what the win condition in this battle is? No matter, because my point remains valid—healing breaks everything. Well, not always, but it certainly complicates magical battles like this. It’s frustrating from a storytelling point of view, because it feels like all the progress our characters make—Einhart nearly knocking out Vivio, Nanoha defeating Einhart—can just be washed away, and we’re back where we started. That’s not a problem in video games because they’re specifically balanced for it, but stories are only as balanced as the plot demands, and healing can swiftly break everything.

Now, this isn’t a problem when the plot is serious, because then we don’t care if things are balanced—it’s more exciting if the protagonists are barely pulling out the win. But in a contest setting like this episde, it feels like we got a full episode where not as much happened as it should have. The same is true with Corona’s Goliath coming back, by the way. Other than Vivio getting a bit banged up and Einhart being temporarily out of the contest, we’re pretty much back where we started.

Corona vs Rio

Probably my favorite fight of the episode was Corona vs Rio. I thought it was a mismatch going in, in Rio’s favor, and it turns out I was right. The neat thing was getting to see Corona’s Golem Create magic, as well as getting to see Rio be badass again. I did end up thinking the same things I usually do in this kind of situation: “Don’t let her summon the golem!” “Knock out the summoner!” “She’s the weak link, punch Corona in the face!!”

What can I say? I don’t fight fair.

Looking Ahead – Starlight Breaker Collision

I chuckled a bit when Teana was talking about using the ambient mana to end the battle. Good idea Tea, but Nanoha taught you that spell! The good thing is that not only have they abandoned the pure one on one and moved to multi-fighter engagements, but, for all my comments and concerns, this team battle is doing the most important thing well—I have no idea who is going to win. (Marker and tag any spoilers, please. I don’t want to know yet.) That’s vital in a contest setting. Looks like we’ll find out next time.

tl;dr: @StiltsOutLoud – The team battle starts out w/ a series of 1v1s, but after Vivio gets knocked out & Nanoha owns Einhart, things shake up #nanohavivid 06

Random thoughts:

  • Crossing kicks doesn’t work like crossing swords, girls. Stop it.
  • I feel like Teana’s Crossfire Full Burst hit a lot of scenery. I guess she was trying to spread ambient mana, but couldn’t she have aimed them at people? Plus I thought Tea’s thing was always that she didn’t have the mana tank of Nanoha, so she needed to be clever and use the Starlight Breaker to finish people off. Here she seemed just as powerful. Maybe that changed in the last few years too, I guess.

My first novel, Wage Slave Rebellion, is available now. (More info—now available in paperback!) Sign up for my email list for a FREE sequel short story. Over at stephenwgee.com, the last four posts: Practical Freedom, Old to them, Stop sending me job ideas, and Schrödinger’s Skill.

Full-length images: 05.

 

Preview

May 10, 2015 at 2:00 pm
42 comments »
  • May 10, 2015 at 2:12 pmMasterDragonKnight

    I wanted Nanoha to so totally outclass Einhart and show her that she had a lot of room to grow, not have this little kid be nearly on par with the White Devil at her finest.

    Well, she immediately did that afterward. One direct blast and Einhart lost almost all her HP.

    http://randomc.net/image/Mahou%20Shoujo%20Lyrical%20Nanoha%20ViVid/Mahou%20Shoujo%20Lyrical%20Nanoha%20ViVid%20-%2006%20-%20Large%2034.jpg

    It was mentioned that Nanoha and Fate both were wearing limiters to decrease their power to that of the kids, so it’s not surprising that Einhart was able to break free of a weaker bind. You can also tell that Nanoha and Fate were not really fighting seriously. Fate, in particular, was holding back a lot.

    http://randomc.net/image/Mahou%20Shoujo%20Lyrical%20Nanoha%20ViVid/Mahou%20Shoujo%20Lyrical%20Nanoha%20ViVid%20-%2006%20-%20Large%2016.jpg

    She may say that she is fighting earnestly, but she definitely still has a soft-spot to her family and friends. She never fired more than three small projectiles at once, never loaded a single cartridge, and never transformed Bardiche into anything other than its base form. Had she immediately went Sonic Drive with Riot Zamber, she would have ended the fight in mere seconds.

    This is more of a teaching opportunity for the kids, so true comparisons would be inaccurate.

    • May 10, 2015 at 2:17 pmStilts

      Hmmm, good point on the limiters. Even limited she did trounce Einhart pretty good, it just didn’t feel like such the overwhelming lesson I was looking for.

      • May 10, 2015 at 2:26 pmMasterDragonKnight

        Well, then I would say to keep that thought in mind, because the “overwhelming lesson” will come later at the hands of another character. It will truly show just how vast the world is, and how Vivio and Einhart are still just novices.

        Same thing with this comment.

        “Don’t let her summon the golem!” “Knock out the summoner!” “She’s the weak link, punch Corona in the face!!”

        This series has a tendency to address exactly what you think and pleasantly surprise you.

      • May 10, 2015 at 3:28 pmWanderer

        Well, then I would say to keep that thought in mind, because the “overwhelming lesson” will come later at the hands of another character.

        Hehe. Best character. I can’t wait to see her. :)

    • May 10, 2015 at 2:46 pmLonghaul

      This is also a training exercise, it would be kind of pointless for Nanoha and Fate to just stomp everyone right off the bat.

      • May 11, 2015 at 11:41 amErimaki

        Less fun too.
        For the kids, not Stilts =p

      • May 11, 2015 at 12:18 pmStilts

        I wanna see moar ‘splosions! >:D

  • May 10, 2015 at 2:54 pmSphaela

    The anime skipped over the bit that explains how each position has a set amount of HP, where if you hit 0 hp you’re out and cannot participate. Makes more sense when paired with the fact that pretty much all the stronger characters have Limiters on so they won’t instantly knock people to 0 hp with a single bullet.

    They also skipped the fact that this team composition was created intentionally to create a series of 1v1′s.

  • May 10, 2015 at 2:58 pmErimaki

    The limiter thing was addressed above already so I won’t go into that.

    As for Nanoha vs. Teana, I interpreted it as both shooting at enemy team members and intercepting each other’s attacks rather than “shooting at each other”. Of course the end result is still a 1-on-1 between nukers, but there’s a tactical difference. A difference that makes the difference between cool and silly for me =3

    Can’t say anything on Subaru vs Nove though, that was unimpressive in comparison to everything else.

    • May 10, 2015 at 3:14 pmStilts

      True on Nanoha vs Teana. I guess the lack of any indication that their shots were even almost doing anything (hitting anyone else, each other, etc) made it seem like they were just being sidelined because the author didn’t want to focus on them that much. Which is likely the meta reason, but tha doesn’t mean you’re not right, lol

      • May 11, 2015 at 11:47 amErimaki

        Fair point on the meta reason.

        Nanoha teling her team is an indication of her intercepting Teana, but just as you say, not seeing Tea’s shots do anything even then kind of kills that.

  • May 10, 2015 at 3:04 pmLonghaul

    I did like how there were so many different fighting styles, depending on how you counted there were at least 5 distinct ones.

  • May 10, 2015 at 3:17 pmMasterDragonKnight

    As for Nanoha vs. Teana, I interpreted it as both shooting at enemy team members and intercepting each other’s attacks rather than “shooting at each other”.

    I agree with you. It seemed more like suppression fire than actually trying to hit each other. Several times you see one of the shots being deflected by another.

    When Nanoha engaged Einhart, she told the rest of her team that she will be stopping her bombardment and to look out for Teana’s attacks. This implies that they were not only sniping at the other team members, but also sniping the other’s “bullets” to protect the team.

    And without Nanoha to suppress Teana, this happened.

    http://randomc.net/image/Mahou%20Shoujo%20Lyrical%20Nanoha%20ViVid/Mahou%20Shoujo%20Lyrical%20Nanoha%20ViVid%20-%2006%20-%20Large%2035.jpg

    • May 10, 2015 at 3:19 pmMasterDragonKnight

      Oops, meant to be a reply to Erimaki above.

  • May 10, 2015 at 3:26 pmWanderer

    Did I miss what the win condition in this battle is? No matter, because my point remains valid—healing breaks everything. Well, not always, but it certainly complicates magical battles like this. It’s frustrating from a storytelling point of view, because it feels like all the progress our characters make—Einhart nearly knocking out Vivio, Nanoha defeating Einhart—can just be washed away, and we’re back where we started. That’s not a problem in video games because they’re specifically balanced for it, but stories are only as balanced as the plot demands, and healing can swiftly break everything.

    It wouldn’t have hurt for them to have made it clearer: when you run out of HP you’re out. The anime kind of made this hard to understand, because it makes it look like Einhart is out of HP after Nanoha hit her, when instead she’s just almost out (when HP drops below… 100 I think it was, you’re immobilized until it raises above that limit again). The hit point system is part of the same rule system that will be used in the tournament: it’s an official scoring system for magical combatants to use when they want to have fun fighting without actually trying to hurt each other.

    I feel like Teana’s Crossfire Full Burst hit a lot of scenery. I guess she was trying to spread ambient mana, but couldn’t she have aimed them at people? Plus I thought Tea’s thing was always that she didn’t have the mana tank of Nanoha, so she needed to be clever and use the Starlight Breaker to finish people off. Here she seemed just as powerful. Maybe that changed in the last few years too, I guess.

    Last I heard Tea had reached AA mage rank. It’s true that Tea’s weakness is that she doesn’t tend to have a lot of magic power of her own, but continued use seems to allow people to slowly increase their inherent power, so she’s not as weak as she used to be. Still, she can’t pull out things like that Crossfire Full Burst she used there at anywhere near the speed that Nanoha could, nor could she do it repeatedly.

    Still, Tea is Center Guard. There was a training episode in StrikerS where Nanoha had Tea standing in the center of a swarm of magic bullets, requiring Teana to stand still and shoot them down as they came at her. The Center Guard’s job is to bombard the enemy, to neutralize the enemy’s attempt to bombard her teammates, and to quickly and effectively analyze the correct magic to most efficiently allow her to do those two things. Tea’s speciality as a shooter allows her to do those things even with limited power, and her training has taught her how to use the power she has most effectively.

    • May 10, 2015 at 6:00 pmAndmeuths

      Teena has achieved S rank. Look carefully when she showed her TSAB ID several episodes ago, when she introduced herself.

    • May 10, 2015 at 6:31 pmStilts

      @ Wanderer

      Good to know, both on the win condition and Teana’s power growth.

      • May 10, 2015 at 6:59 pmWanderer

        Oh, I forgot to mention another win/lose condition: if someone is rendered unconscious they are also out. In the tournament there’s a 10-count for that, but it would be impractical in this battle. The tournament also has rules for ring-out and running out of time in a match.

  • May 10, 2015 at 3:47 pmMelissa

    Miyazaki was right if you want people to love your work you have to focus on reality from either other cultures or your own life. Why do you think cardcaptor sakura, cowboy bebop, and spirited away so well received even today? Because clamp, shinchiro watanabe, and hayao miyazaki observed how real people act instead of taking characters types from other shows and passing them off as their own. This is why I get frustrated with Otaku type show (which this is) this could be so much more if masaki Tsuzuki actually delved into the characters and what makes them who they are instead of doing a dull dragon Ball z thing.

    • May 10, 2015 at 4:12 pmKuro

      I wonder if you have even watched the previous seasons. The main cast had already been fully developed in the previous seasons. This is about the new generation, and they have barely even begun their development. Not to mention, this is supposed to be a lighthearted spin-off sequel. Again, you are trying to force the standards of other genres onto a different one.

      You have already made your dislike of yuri abundantly clear in both previous episodes and even other series. If you don’t like it, there is no one forcing you to watch it. Since you have stated that yuri is the only reason guys watch anime.

      Lastly, what exactly is your definition of “otaku” type shows? You keep bringing up the same older series for comparison. Are you not an “otaku” for those very shows?

  • May 10, 2015 at 4:33 pmTenchi

    I have a little concern about the speed of the adaptation. They really will can put 70 chapters in 24~26 episodes in this pace? They only adapt 14 chapters in 6 episodes

    • May 10, 2015 at 5:04 pmWanderer

      I expect we’re more likely to reach up to the 50s somewhere.

    • May 10, 2015 at 5:13 pmMasterDragonKnight

      I think chapter 62 would be a good place for the anime to stop. It resolves most of the issue with Vivio and Einhart, ending on a note similar to Nanoha and Fate at the end of the first season.

      This episode covered three chapters, so the chapters that have battles should go pretty quickly. Hopefully they pace themselves well enough to continue.

      That being said, I do wish they would adapt chapters 63-66, maybe even as OVA, for pure cuteness.

      Show Spoiler ▼

    • May 11, 2015 at 12:30 pmErimaki

      Is the series going to be 1 or 2 cours?
      If it’s just 1, I would rather them
      Show Spoiler ▼

      than go into an arc they wouldn’t be able finish without rush.

      • May 11, 2015 at 5:35 pmMasterDragonKnight

        I hope it is two-cour. Otherwise, it would end at a very weird place.

        Show Spoiler ▼

  • May 10, 2015 at 4:46 pmGinobi47

    This episode is filled with so much FRIENDSHIP!

    FYI: For those who are not manga readers, Nanoha and Fate sealed their own power in order to match the others. If those 2 fought using full power, the others would have been immidietly sidelined due to sheer amount of FRIENDSHIP!! Turning the city into a creater would be effortless for a full powered Nanoha and Fate

    • May 11, 2015 at 8:45 amFruit

      Not just Nanoha and Fate. I don’t get where this misconception stems from, but obviously all the ex-Riot6 forwards, and likely Nove and Lutecia (she used to have a fulltime limiter too due to being on the offending side on StrikerS) have limited power in this match too.

      Look at where Corona says “adults will have limiters” – but it doesn’t mean 18+, it means the real trained mages serving in the military and similar as opposed top the four schoolgirls from Vivid, who are more or less novices/hobbyists at this point. You really thought they have what it takes to face Erio/Caro/Tia/Subaru?

  • May 10, 2015 at 4:56 pmRava

    Limiters? Nanoha? Pffff. More cartridges to compensate. Nanoha’s MUST BEFRIEND reaction on getting countered made me laugh.

  • May 10, 2015 at 5:52 pmMelissa

    Kuro@ let’s look at fma for example Arakawa sensei in order to make a compelling story researched alchemy and it’s teachings. That’s why it’s so interesting as a story she didn’t look to other shows for inspiration she drew from what she had from researching about alchemy. When in my above comment did I say anything about yuri? I meant some Otaku shows in general.

    • May 10, 2015 at 6:31 pmKuro

      instead of taking characters types from other shows and passing them off as their own

      So any show that has elements even remotely similar to others are automatically plagiarizing? From what you stated above, you are implying that any series with beams and punching is stealing from Dragonball? Also, I suppose every show out their is stealing the tsundere character type from some other show.

      she didn’t look to other shows for inspiration she drew from what she had from researching about alchemy

      Hiromu Arakawa has stated that she drew inspiration from the manga authors Suiho Tagawa and Hiroyuki Eto.

      Even Hayao Miyazaki himself has had inspiration from others for his work. Everyone has to have been influenced by some other person for their work. Your definition of originality is far too inplausable, and you have chosen this series, which I again reiterate is a lighthearted spin-off sequel, to bash for reason I cannot understand.

      Lastly, you have yet to answer my question about what defines “otaku” shows in your eyes, and how your shows are not that.

    • May 10, 2015 at 6:42 pmStilts

      @ Melissa

      Please don’t come here to insult a show others are enjoying. That doesn’t increase anyone’s enjoyment, and that’s not why we’re here. Not everything is going to be a masterpiece, and that’s fine—seeking to tell a story that will entertain is a worthy endeavor. Your comments struck me—and clearly struck Kuro—as those of someone who isn’t trying to understand the story, and is instead trying to marginalize and dismiss it because it’s an “otaku” show that doesn’t live up to some of the best works the medium. That may not have been your intention, but that’s how it sounds.

      If that wasn’t your intent, please bear that in mind in the future so you don’t come across as judgmental when you don’t intend to be. Thank you.

      P.S. There’s nothing new under the sun. When someone thinks something is original, they usually just don’t know the influences. That’s true of all your examples, and it does not diminish them—it’s how an artist uses the elements they’ve stolen that shows their worth.

    • May 15, 2015 at 10:41 pmVagrant

      In line with what Stilts said you should watch “Everything is a Remix” http://everythingisaremix.info/.

      There are very, very few things that are “original”, and even those original things are just well executed or fresh mixes of other existing, established tropes/characters/stories/etc.

      A lot of people have already said this in one way or form…

      Just because a story doesn’t fall in line with ones personal expectations, “shipping”, or personal tastes doesn’t always mean the creator is pandering. It is very possible the creator themselves are attracted to the same themes, tropes, genres, which would explain why they’d attract similarly interested people to their works.

      And even if they are, it’s silly to keep coming back to something you already dislike only to keep bashing it, which will also come off as bashing the fan base.

      Also, the lens you’re using in which to view and critique Nanoha is a bit overkill for what Nanoha is. It’s like you’re holding up Fast & the Furious (or heck, the Avengers) to the standards of Schindler’s List. Which is partly why your comments come off as condescending.

  • May 10, 2015 at 6:35 pmVision_m

    We’ve got to remember that both Nanoha and Fate have limiters on their powers. So Einhart seeming almost on par with Nanoha could be due to this cause if I am correct when she fought Vivio in StrikerS her limiter was released.

  • May 10, 2015 at 7:42 pmMelissa

    Didn’t mean to come off as condescending or judgemental all I was trying to say was characters in fictional stories have feel like real people that the audience can relate to; real people have flaws and make mistakes sometimes anime focuses too much on wish fufilememt rather than making you feel for the characters and their situations. Maybe I was a little too passionate in my above comments and I apologize.

    • May 10, 2015 at 9:29 pmStilts

      No worries. And I don’t disagree with that statement. It’s just that some stories work better for different people, and some don’t even focus on that too much. Either way, if a comment is delivered too harshly no dialogue will take place, so I think I’d let you know : ) <3

      By the way, you can click where it says REPLY on an existing comment to reply to that one in a single thread. Hope that helps you in your commenting here : )

      • May 10, 2015 at 11:45 pmelior1

        they actually explained all the HP points near the end of the episode so they made it a little clear

  • May 10, 2015 at 11:42 pmSteven Den Beste

    Teanna was actually pretty disappointing in this battle. She fired off a lot of shots, but she didn’t actually hit many people or hit them very hard. And the anime didn’t let us know about all of them. In the manga when she fired off that massive barrage, she damaged Eriol and Subaru, but it was only minor damage. When she hit Nanoha just after Nanoha took out Einhard, that one did a lot of damage.

    But she’ll make it good next episode. Just wait!

  • May 12, 2015 at 1:31 amSammy

    I sort of want team hayate to appear next episode and join in this mock battle. 6v6v6, now that would be a fun mess to watch.