「カオスダイバー」 (Kaosudaibaa)
“Chaos Driver”

If I had one way to sum up Drifters’ latest episode it would be this: wow. Fighting from start to end, we got everything from flaming swords to extreme acrobatics, mindset differences and tactical displays. What a difference a lack of comedy makes.

Without a doubt the highlight rests with the twin fights of Joan d’Arc/Toyohisa and Gilles de Rais/Yoichi. Besides the sheer fun of it all, both fights also showcased the strength of the Ends, particularly their magic. We knew all about Joan’s love of fire, but Gilles de Rais is the literal killing machine, seemingly invulnerable to death until shredded by Gatling fire. Magic definitely appears to be the “physical” factor separating Ends and Drifters, as no Drifter (except newly revealed Abe no Seimei) has yet shown magic potential. I’m finding this dichotomy quite interesting, as it nicely illustrates how the Ends are effectively inhuman. For the Ends magic is the manifestation of their rage, a permanent reminder of why they detest the world. The Drifters on the other hand lack magic because they have not lost their societal ties, there is no grudge to nurture, no revenge to seek. Olminu’s statement about Drifters and Ends having the same mindset is thus only half true, both may employ the same “barbarism”, but do so for different reasons. While the Ends seek simple destruction, the Drifters emphasize construction (i.e. Nobunaga’s state building or Toyohisa’s fatherly approval). It’s basically a two sided coin.

Another striking bit for me this week was the differences between Drifters. One question largely unanswered in Drifters is how Drifters/Ends from different eras interact with one another. We have explored this a bit with Nobunaga, Toyohisa, and Yoichi already, but all had the benefit of coming from a relatively unchanging society. Joan was probably Toyohisa’s first encounter with a European—and a woman at that—so it was quite interesting (and amusing) seeing both flinging insults and Toyohisa questioning her reason for fighting. Particularly intriguing was how Toyohisa picked up on Joan’s lack of combat experience through her actions (especially her use of magic). This highlights a key difference between medieval Western and Japanese warfare: knights often recklessly ran off ahead (and alone) into the enemy, while samurai waited (typically) for the daimyo’s command. Joan ironically represented the worst excesses of knightly honour, flinging herself at Toyohisa in the belief her power would give her victory (as it very nearly did), while Toyohisa carefully planned out his strategy to ensure his success. It’s fascinating seeing this type of fight play out here considering the rarity of such battles in history, especially how well both Joan and Toyohisa showcased their respective society’s approach to war. Given Joan survived the fight, I’m eagerly anticipating the second round encounter.

Next Time: The Gang is all here

With the End meeting out of the way, it looks like we finally have the Drifters come together as Butch Cassidy/Kid and crew make their appearance. How the introductions will go is anyone’s guess, but I’m expecting lots of fireworks, bickering, and plenty Olminu name calling. After all, if Scipio and Hannibal tagged along too, Nobunaga just acquired some serious competition.

Random Tidbits

Really surprised the Octobrists are headed by Abe no Seimei. It does explain his supposed magic prowess though, given that Seimei was an exorcist in real life.

Gilles de Rais might be the only End who is not actually crazy. His back story implies he chose his fate rather than succumbing to tragic circumstance. Hilariously ironic, given his actual history.

Might be me seeing things, but it appears Joan’s fire is restricted to paths drawn by her sword/daggers. Potential limitation to her power maybe.


  1. Toyo to Joan: GO make me a sandwich! XD

    The Anime makes Gilles more easier to understand, in the manga half of the time you can’t understand what he was babbling about. (made him look crazier too)

      1. Oh, no problem. Gilles’ figure has been rather thoroughly ruined by his foes; most people who have heard of Gilles wouldn’t doubt his debauchery. If anything, this goes to show how much of history has been written by the victors.

        …as a funny tidbit, such a fate wasn’t even uncommon in that age. Quite a few figures – such as Elizabeth Bathory – were permanently etched into history as monsters, simply because they got into the crossfire. With that said, the most famous case was the end of the Knights Templar; their last grandmasters were accused of heresy and idolism and were burned at the stake. Their actual crime was the french king owing a lot of money to them.

        History is way more interesting than people give it credit for!

      2. Exactly! And the most mind-boggling part of it all is that the juiciest bits are committed by the most preposterous homo sapiens who in present times can simply be deemed as downright retarded at times. What a most peculiar and strange species we are.

        Anyways, the fact that the rest of the gang has arrived has me anxiously waiting for the next episode to come. I simply can’t get enough of this narrative at all! Oh, what a tease!

        Nishizawa Mihashi
  2. Liked the episode. Personally, the relative dearth of YMMV comedy helped, but wasn’t the only reason. One thing I liked was how Joan wavered a bit after she got thrown into the well. Not a lot, but just enough to be noticeable which gives her a bit more depth beyond “BURN, BURN, BURN! Muhahahahaha”. Same goes for Gilles de Rais’ revelation at the end. Perhaps a bit tacked on/last minute, but added a little something IMO. I agree that the Ends are presented as more “monster-like” (or “inhuman”) than the Drifters, but that doesn’t mean they have to be one-dimensional either.

    Speaking of Gilles de Rais, another thing I liked was that he did ultimately die. There was a moment where I thought he’d be rescued and live on despite being shredded. A lot. So far it seems the Ends are more powerful than Drifters (have super powers/magic and such) = the Drifters need to be smarter and use some tactics. That works just fine for the story (protagonist as a bit of an underdog, and thus need to do some thinking). Still, Ends should not be too hax either – there’s a proper balance between foes IMO, and that’s were Gilles de Rais dying comes in.

    So much for the Gatling gun since it was expressly stated to be the last magazine. Munitions supply IS something I wonder about for the two cowboy outlaws. Nobunaga has settled in as tactician/strategist/commander vs. a combat role, but even if not entirely, seems there’s enough basic tech in this world to manufacture rudimentary matchlock muskets and corresponding ammunition. For Butch & Sundance though… They died in 1908 so you’re looking at early smokeless powder & metallic center-fire cartridges. MUCH different. Point here is that OK, no more Gatling gun but what about their pistols which potentially has the same ammo supply issue? Can’t see how they resupply those either even if they collected spent brass. If those two run out of even pistol ammo, then what? Would they be able to do much? Not sure if the anime will go into such detail though. This is pretty over-the-top like Hellsing (which was never one to worry about details like magazine capacity).

    1. It would be technically possible to manufacture smokeless powder rounds in this world, it would just require knowledge of the powder and the capability of pressing empty rounds. Both are possible here, but incredibly unlikely. The knowledge for pressing rounds in particular would need an engineering-trained Drifter, and likely would delve too much into technical details for this type of show.

      I think we are probably sticking with muskets for the duration, it’s just easier having front loading firearms and shooting things up than recreating industrial warfare, plus this helps retain the focus on sword fights.

      1. @Pancakes: I suppose if you have a Drifter chemist/chemical engineer you might be able to invent smokeless powder, but not sure what tech might be needed for that as well. You’ll also need need percussion caps, etc. (and save casings (“brass”). The fact that manufacturing just matchlock muskets requires the “skill of the dwarves” isn’t encouraging on that front. I’ll assume there’s enough tech to manufacture some lead ammunition. So yes, very unlikely if at all.

        Reason I bring it up is that, I’d think without modern(ish) firearms, Butch and Sundance are quite nerfed as combat characters. LOT of difference between them using say a Colt “Peacemaker” or “Frontier” revolver and a matchlock musket pistol (or rifle). If you retain focus on sword fights, what are those guys going to do? Hang out? This is why I asked the question. It’s a character issue for those two IMO, not just the typical type of battles in the show.

        Lastly, speaking of modern firearms, Hiryuu has to be a gold mine for that. Might be able to remove the ship’s 25mm AA guns, though those would still be heavy. Didn’t see any 12.7mm MGs listed as armament for the ship, but you could pull 7.7mm Type 92 machine gun and Type 97 machine guns from any Aichi D3A (“Val”) dive bombers Nakajima B5N (“Kate”) torpedo bombers. Probably some small arms around as well (pistols, rifles, etc.). That and thousands of rounds of ammunition. Hiryuu’s a treasure trope of weaponry even if you can’t get one plane into the air (and who needs planes when you have giant eagles! They solve everything! (sorry, I like that joke). Curious to see what happens with Hiryuu & Yamaguchi Tamon

      2. @daikama

        The chemistry and manufacture of smokeless powder is about as easy as basic gunpowder, it just takes knowledge/production of the right materials (i.e. nitrocellulose) and 19th Century chemistry techniques. Like you mention the gun/ammunition manufacturing is the challenging bit because that requires precision machinery and medieval-era smithing definitely cannot handle the task.

        Also I actually wouldn’t be surprised if Hiryuu does function as the deus ex machina for the modern Drifters, that would solve damn near every “lack of weapon” problem while keeping their spread limited to a few in order to “conserve ammo”. Butch and Kid keep being relevant and Toyohisa can continue happily lopping of heads.

        Maybe, but I don’t think so. Most gun owners/users (at least those who just buy rather than make their own ammo) aren’t that familiar with both the type and proportions of material which go into their propellants. Hell some combinations are even trade secrets.

      3. @Pancakes & @john: I knew a guy who was into reloading his own ammo. You buy pieces (bullets, powder & percussion caps. Usally they reuse the brass casings), and then assemble using precision measuring & assembly equipment. They’re not making all the components from scratch by any means (To use an analogy, you buy parts when you build your own PC. You don’t make your own SSD, CPU, etc.). People reload their own ammo because if you shoot a lot it saves you some money over time. Also, you can really customize rounds (even do some “wildcat” rounds with higher than normal pressures though must be careful on that). So it’s extremely unlikely that Butch, Sundance, the IJN pilot, etc. would know how to create smokeless powder.

        @Nishizawa Mihashi: True, but I wonder how useful ballistas and scorpios would be. Could be useful in some battles, but not nearly as flexible as other weapons. Probably better off with Nobunaga’s plan to produce matchlock rifles if that can be done properly and sufficiently supplied.

      4. True that, considering the crazy numbers of their enemies in addition to magical Ends, those things are basically artillery pieces in comparison to what an individual can do. Modern warfare’s all about speed, volume, precision and flexibility anyway 😀

        Nishizawa Mihashi
    2. If anything though, the fact that Scipio and Hannibal are around might mean that they could be making some ballistas and scorpios. Just a thought of mine. Though in Hannibal’s case he might just go on and conduct some form of guerrilla warfare against the Orteo.

      Nishizawa Mihashi
    3. apart from Hiryu being treasure trove of small arms and ammo, it also has a number of 127mm guns which would be pretty devastating to any medieval castle out there… I can already see Hannibal musing “if i had those at the walls of Rome…”

      1. @ewok40k: FWIW, I didn’t mention the 12.7cm guns because those things are big & heavy. Maybe they could removed them from Hiryuu, but how useful would they be? Have to create a field artillery platform for those (can use horses to move them). JMO, but dwarves or not, have some doubts on that. 12.7cm HE shells could be used for materials though I guess.

      2. Rudimentary horse-drawn carriage would be enough for hitting targets size of a castle, and 5 inch guns were not THAT heavy, WW1 era had horse-drawen fied guns up to 6 inches…
        Dwarves are interesting point since they can provide high quality manufacturing for firearms Nobunaga wants… maybe not repeaetrs and gatling guns, but Minie-shot rifled muskets (Cassidy and Sundance must have ran into some in their career) are definitely possibility!
        This show reminds me of 1632 now… just with multi-era time travellers landing in fantasy medieval world!

      3. @ewok40k: I realize horses can work for pulling field artillery (mentioned it in my post). The 12.7 cm/40 Type 89 naval gun weigh 3,100 kilograms (6,834 lb) per gun (just the gun and these are twin mounts). That’s not light (and about 3x the weight of the 25 mm Type 96 AA guns AA guns). Think about the undertaking. Hiryuu is a BIG ship = need some sort of dock where you can install a crane to even attempt to remove those. AFAIK, Hiryuu doesn’t have a crane they could use themselves to lift such heavy guns (e.g. maybe use the crane a BB/CA/AV would have to recover seaplanes). Frankly, just getting the 25mm guns out would be tough, but those I think are reasonably viable.

        Then you have to manufacture a field artillery mount for this. No pneumatic tires doesn’t help, but it’s possible to work around that. Personally, this strikes me as an earlier setting than 1632 and only pure medieval stuff (gun powder isn’t in this world outside of Drifters/Ends. It’s all sword/bow stuff). Only the dwarves (cliche’/trope fantasy smiths) could possibly manufacture rudimentary matchlock rifles. A mount for 3 ton WWII era guns is a big step up from that. For perspective, the WWII 122 mm gun M1931/37 (A-19) with mount weighed over 7000kg. For medieval tech, that’s a serious undertaking. But yeah, dwarves + fantasy land so can’t utterly dismiss it. However, IMO I think it’s far from a forgone conclusion they could get it done.

      4. 16-17 century siege guns were sometimes over 2 tons heavy
        so after stripping the 5 incher down to barrel and lock I assume a fitting carriage could be made.
        anyway I presume between Nobunaga and the gunslingers they will find a middle-tech ground for Dwarves to manufacture – possibly something around the Napoleonic era? Now if we could get Bonaparte himself as Drifter…

  3. I appreciate the lack of SJWs here and the complaint about how Toyohisa shouldn’t have looked down on Joan as a woman and tell her to return home compared to other sites. He’s from feudal japan, that’s simply how his culture and society viewed women, so it’s completely justifiable behavior. It doesn’t make him less of a character for having such beliefs.

    Also, really cool episode with a distinct lack of humor, which honestly makes things a lot more tense and badass. Watching Yoichi and the drifter/elves fight Gilles was a treat, he reminded me of Berserker from Fate Stay Night in how he doesn’t seemingly die…I was about to think he also had nine lives. I hope to see Joan make a reappearance, but next time with maybe a renewed sense of purpose or some new perspective on everything, her backstory is pretty tragic.

    1. Disagree with this but wouldn’t have brought it up until you did.

      Japan does not put sexism in their shows in order to be historically accurate, they put sexism in their shows because they’re sexist. That’s STILL how most Japanese men (and women, culture’s a mighty thing) would view the situation.

      That said, if you watch anime (which I’d say it’s a safe bet we all do) you just learn to deal with Japanese sexism however you choose to deal with it. Acting like it’s only there because the writer cared about historical accuracy is silly.

      Also, saying it about Joan of Arc of all people is a bit tone-deaf given her significance in pop culture and why.

  4. I didn’t really care for this episode. Can’t quite put my finger on why… too much action? Jeanne being defeated by a well and PTSD? Nobunaga’s role being reduced to ‘its okay guys, cavalry can’t climb trees’ and ‘fire! fire! fire!’? I dunno.

    I just found myself liking the elf action and Toyohisa/Nobunaga/Yoichi sitting around a fire bullshitting a lot more than this 25 minute slugfest.

  5. I liked this episode.Though I didn’t like the anti Christian content.
    I like to compare it with the riverworld series by Philip Jose Farmer where different
    historical figure had discusions like Jesus Hitler Richard Burton.
    These people never die just get relocated.
    The movie was crap.

    As for gunpowder there are a series by a guy on youtube search google gunpowder from urine.
    Remember don’t try this at home. Otherwise youll win the Darwin award.

    Japanese and Korean at this time were experts. Think of Oda Nobunaga.and General Lee Sin Shin.A naval guy who beat the Japanese 4 centuries ago.

    Thinking of an anime based on princess Kagiya with a gunpowder theme. Rockets to the moon.

    One of my fave animes.About 26 episodes forgot its name. Great Music came out about 10 years ago.

  6. To make Gunpowder is easy go to Codys Lab you can see how its done.
    Its a low tech all you need lots of straw horses and urine and allow to cure over 1 or 2 years.

    Read a few sci fi books this will tell you how its done.
    David drake. David stirling
    The Ring of fire series.
    The emberverse series.
    It takes a village to destroy a civilization.

    I like Oda because of the original KOEI games not the later ones.
    Watch a couple of taiga dramas about Oda Nobunaga. Good at land warfare
    His successor was hopeless at naval.
    And Korean drama about Lee Sin Shin where the Japanaese navy was destroyed by the turtle ships
    Playing Civ6 and total war 2 Japan. Its fun to fantasise what would happen.

    There is a time travel series Jin about a time travelling doctor from the present.
    Live drama based on a manga . There was a cause and effect problem. He was altering history as in steins gate

    Love oppai boobs as well. Like the humour.

  7. Still not really sure why Toyohisa let Joan go. At first I thought that was just the historical Japanese viewpoint on women in combat, but then, after some research, I learned that Japan does have a history of female samurai. While they were not as common as their male counterparts, onna-bugeisha were still used even during Toyohisa’s time.


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