OP: 「legendary future」by fripSide
「月夜に蠢く魔物たち」 (Tsukiyo ni ugomeku mamono-tachi)
“Demons Moving on the Moonlit Night”
Isekai may be all the rage, yet fantasy hasn’t been forgotten—at least if King’s Raid is anything to go by. While nothing really new as RC Preview is wont to discuss (particularly that mobile game origin), this one is determined to possess a bit of staying power, and if first episode impressions are anything to go by, it might just accomplish its goal.
Right off the bat King’s Raid betrays its origins: it’s a pure fantasy, warts and all. Besides the dime a dozen walled city starting location and swords and shields foundation, we have the usual array of characters and classes everyone and their grandmother has seen before. Case in point is our knight Kasel (Ishikawa Kaito), who besides oozing the ubiquitous knightly concepts of valour and chivalry, retains the ever-present naivety and inexperience which colour damn near every character in a similar position. Add on top the noble sacrifice Clause and childhood friend and future party member (for obvious reasons) Frey (Kakuma Ai) and you can easily guess where this one is going structure-wise. Lord of the Rings and Record of Lodoss War continue their traditions apace.
Where King’s Raid secures some room for maneuver though is in the story itself. Besides the typical demonic invasion seen plenty times before (itself also featured in fellow season mate Dragon Quest), King’s Raid throws up some dust with the presence of dark elves and what definitely looks to be a tale of revenge against decadent villains lying behind the visage. Again, nothing really new if we’re being completely honest (Shingeki no Bahamut’s second season is a good example of the concept), but it is interesting to see the mashup of ideas at play here, especially considering our dark elf duo is likely to join with Kasel and friends once the main plot gets going. While I don’t expect any major shenanigans here outside of the real enemy lying somewhere in Kasel’s immediate orbit (who brought about the latest demon incursion? Your guess is as good as mine), there’s always room for surprise, especially considering it’s been a long while since seeing a good old-fashioned high fantasy romp.
Although we’re unlikely to see any serious anime magic out of King’s Raid, I’d certainly keep this one in mind if in need of some proper fantasy to break the isekai monotony—particularly given King’s Raid just happens to be 26 episodes in length. This one may be generic, it might be overly vanilla, but even the most common of stories, when properly told, can yield a good deal of fun.
ED: 「”SticK Out」by KOTOKO