「Robots & Fantasy」
Edward Elric said it right. One can dislike milk, but still love cake! In a similar vein, I’m not so much a fan of mecha, but the isekai premise had me completely entranced from the get go. Let it be known far and wide, that Zaiden is Random Curiosity’s “Iseguy”, the person you rely upon for matters pertaining to this recent trend of other-worldly adventures. May I proudly introduce Knight’s & Magic, an anime adaptation of a light novel I’d read some parts of about a year ago. I’m happy to say that it was among the ones I particularly liked, although the translations eventually stalled, much to my chagrin.
Zaiden’s Practical Advice
A hardcore mecha otaku by the name of Kurata (Sakaguchi Daisuke) dies a dog’s death. He is subsequently reincarnated as Ernesti Eccheveria (Takahashi Rie) into a medieval fantasy world where the skies are ruled by mechas called Silhouette Knights. If you were wondering why everything was going at such a breakneck speed, they fit the whole first volume into a single episode. Yup, you just read that correctly. I’m wondering if they were skipping to the crux of the matter in order to draw in more viewers, bypassing segments devoted to character development and world-building. It’s a shame, but I can see how it possibly works out for the better, simply because there a lot of righteous self-insert moments that were a pleasure to read, but admittedly overly simplistic in execution. For those interested, I recommend reading the rest of the ‘School Entry Arc’ here. It may seriously boost what you’re already enjoying to new levels, provided you don’t get too greedy and read ahead. Tempting, I know! Still, try to hold on.
Explaining the Magic System
Let me briefly fill you in on how the isekai concept remains relevant to Knight’s & Magic, despite the fact it seems to be immediately ditched after a silly and lacklustre death. Ernesti’s genius level programming skills actually correlate with the magic system used in this medieval fantasy world. The light novel goes into much further detail in this regard, which I shall proceed to explain. The spells he used to fly and increase his physical abilities, that the twins use too, are a result of the improvements Ernesti made to the current world’s magic using his contemporary knowledge of programming.
As for the magic system itself, the novel describes it as being parallel to computer programming language. Ernesti initially doesn’t possess knowledge of the magic language, since it didn’t originally exist on Earth. But after keenly studying it from a very young age, he quickly starts spotting how he can make adjustments for the sake of maximum efficiency, and begins to approach problems with the skill of a genius, veteran programmer.
I actually really enjoy this approach to isekai, though I’m still impartial to the more conventional stuff. Ernesti is not just cheating with knowledge of modern advancements to gain a completely cheap footing in this new fantasy world he finds himself in. He’s actively bringing a totally different mindset and method from our world, generating innovation and driving progress in scientific fields that don’t even exist in our world. By embarking down a path that uniquely incorporates the most advanced thinking from both worlds, while developing entirely new technologies as he goes along, it really feels like Ernesti’s achievements are gained through his own efforts and hard work.
Other Random Thoughts
Things of note include when Ernesti starts off from the beginning of elementary school, and skips straight to middle school level. Pretty impressive if you ask me, and the reaction faces of the professor and his new classmates are priceless. Anyway, onto the mechas. Don’t you agree that they look super cool? Much better than what I was expecting, coming in off of 8bit’s more recent anime adaptations. The actual animation itself wasn’t very smooth, but it all looked good flowing together pretty well and that’s what ultimately matters at the end of the day.
Shinpachi (Gintama) turning into Megumin (Konosuba) had to be one of the most bizarre transitions I’ve heard, but I’ll take it. Instead of pastiche explosions, we’ll be treated to gushing mecha-gasms. I have no doubt that Takahashi Rie will do a fine job in this department.
Given the next episode preview, it’s quite clear that we won’t get a flashback covering the earlier events in the light novel, where a vast majority of the character development took place. From here on out, we’re gonna be treated to pure mecha fanservice, complete with the glitz of battle and the excitement of tinkering about for upgrades. If you love action, mecha and isekai, be sure to stick around! And also look forwards to another post about Knight’s & Magic coming later this week!
ED: 「Hello! My World!!」by fhána