Good luck deciding, you bastard.
I wasn’t planning on watching this series. I had planned to introduce it and be done, as much because I was sure we’d once again get half of the story and never see the rest. Yet I kept watching it, because there’s something comforting in the familiar story, and for whatever its failings, Undefeated Bahamut Chronicle is one step above. One step above average, granted, but that’s something.
Make no mistake, this is still a magical-fantasy-action-harem anime through and through. It does not elevate the form; that I watched it at all is a signifier that I’m fond of these kinds of stories, and that I’ve seen so many of them that I can comfortably watch one without paying much attention, making it a relaxing, low-effort pastime. Which is probably why I bothered to finish it at all, if I’m being honest; it took little effort and it let me relax, while better shows demand more from their viewers (to the viewer’s benefit, but that’s not always what we want).
If I had to give another reason why I kept watching, it’s because Undefeated Bahamut Chronicle was always one step above average when my interest started to falter. Krulcifer was like the return of Kampfer’s Shizuku—Krulcifer isn’t that sexual, but she is aggressive, and a cool beauty to the core. You can’t help but root for her. Ditto to Celes-sempai, who is at first painted as a manhater, but surprise, that was a lie! Maybe not a great one, but I appreciated that the tiresome trope was averted, and Celes-sempai was much more likable for it.
Lisha was fine—a standard tsundere who turns dere pretty quick, nothing special. Philuffy is every boy’s dream osana najimi, but not all that compelling of a character otherwise. She’s more obviously wish-fulfillment. Ditto to Airi as the kuudere imouto, though she only occasionally goes overtly brocon, which is nice. As for Yoruka, she’s got the sexual aggression going, so that’s fun, but it’s really too soon to tell for her. I actually liked the three Triad members a lot, especially Noct (“Yes.”), for no other reason than they’re fun, lively, and they don’t fall for Lux (a few comments aside). It’s nice to have some girls who just want to be friends with the male lead.
As for Lux himself, he’s a mixed bag. He’s a likable enough guy, but he suffers from standard magical-fantasy-action-harem main character syndrome, where he’s too powerful and too “chivalrous” for his own damn good. I put chivalrous in air quotes because would it really kill him to let his friends help him for once, instead of treating them like fragile children who must be protected? The answer is no, it wouldn’t kill him, and it might keep him alive; though to his credit, he does properly fight alongside Lisha in the finale. Either way, that’s a mainstay of the genre that I really do not enjoy.
As for the plot, not much to say. Some arcs were better than others. The whole Drag-Ride/Abyss thing was serviceable enough, but it never compelled me. I still don’t know or care what the Ruins were all about. It’s all a vehicle for the harem action to me. I don’t know if that’s due to adaptation decay or not, but the action never pulled me in, so I’ve already begun forgetting what happened.
“One step above average” isn’t the most effusive of praise, but it’s the best I can give. It’s around about the level of Blade Dance, which I liked better; I don’t know whether that’s due to preference, bad taste, or a year and a half less of experience with the genre. It’s not a bad little magical-fantasy-action-harem anime, though I probably would have enjoyed it more had it indulged in more harem antics rather than blazing through the plot. But I suppose what’s done is done. Feel free to add your thoughts in the comments below.
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