Movie: Steins;Gate – Fuka Ryouiki no Déjà vu

Steins;Gate – The Burdened Domain of Déjà vu

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AlexDeja Vu, the name of the film, is an anomaly caused by the overlapping of short term memory and long term memory, or in other words, a phenomenon created by a temporal discrepancy of memories.  It’s something which was touched upon in the OVA, and how memories of world lines past visited were in people who shouldn’t have them. However, isn’t this movie just White Fox trying to milk an incredibly popular and well selling franchise some more? After all, there’s no loose ends left, and aside from getting a few extra episodes out of the scenes and routes which it didn’t touch upon, the original story is completed. Going into a movie with this mindset, I was pretty much expecting something terrible.

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Steins;Gate OVA Episode 25

Egoistic Poriomania

After all this time, it’s nice to see the first part of the Steins;Gate epilogue, with the movie finishing things off for good (assuming). But what really surprised me was that for anime original material (i’ve read the novel and there was nothing like this in there), they’ve kept the atmosphere of Steins;Gate. You can’t even tell that it’s anime original. I mean…

USA Official: (In English) What’s the purpose of your visit?
Okarin: (In Japanese)Well. I guess I have no choice but to reveal it.Ahem. (In English)I am mad scientist.United States. Chaos! and invade!
USA Official: (laughs)
Okarin: (does mad scientist laugh)
<clear to shot of Okarin in handcuffs>

It may be playing off the best gag in anime for a long time, but it worked. And, well…I was smiling and laughing the whole way through. I really really missed Hououin Kyouma and his tsundere assistant, al0ng with his wacky companions. But the best part was by far the way they picked up the relationship between Christina and Okarin, after that amazing episode (relativity theory is still so romantic n.n). I mean, obviously, Christina doesn’t remember being there, but like everyone else, Reading Steiner rubbed off on her, and she faintly remembers what happened to her in those endless three weeks.

All that I really need to say is that it’s Steins;Gate. More Steins;Gate. And more of the best anime of 2011 is never a bad thing. Bring on the movie~:3

Gaming Review: STEINS;GATE

Obviously, the moment I found a translation to the novel format of Steins;Gate, the best anime to air in 2011 and currently my #1 favourite, it was downloaded and played faster than you could blink. I was expecting a tale of epic proportions, with mad scientists, tsunderes, moe lolitas and a supah h4x0r…and I wasn’t actually disappointed with it.

For those who aren’t aware of the story, Steins;Gate is about a group of people in Akihabara who manage to transform their microwave into a time machine through tinkering and hacking and attaching their mobile phones to it. Even though at first the premise seems slightly dubious, it wins you over with all the science. It tells you very accurately how it all works and how it could all work, and it even manages to tie a super conspiracy theory including John Titor and CERN. In doing so, they accidently change the world in ways that they never even imaged were possible, and this results in them getting stuck in a dead end loop of destiny, and the meat of the story is them struggling to escape.

It may not actually sound like very much, but the whole dead end loop thing is done really well, showing how everyone involved struggles to fight destiny in their own unique ways; even those who aren’t aware that they’re fighting destiny. The story is actually really dynamic, filled with a constantly revolving plot, and featuring those little tweaks for everyone. All the members of the cast have been given a proper story, and they all reach their respective conclusions. In reading through the story, you come across several times when you can use your mobile phone, the device responsible for activating and charging the Phone Microwave(Name Subject to Change) and travelling through time itself, for reasons which may not tie directly into the story, but are those small touches which makes a story complete; like calling people to find out what they’re doing, replying to their texts and well..that’s all that a phone can do. But you get the picture.

The phone’s version of replying to texts and calling people replaces the choice system which has become a staple of Visual Novels in the game, so that the game will automatically chose the route for you to go down based on who you rang up and what you replied to their text messages. Sound confusing? It kind of is at first, and you often struggle to figure out just how and where to change routes. This…does result in a lot of skipping, and if you’re like me and want to get all 6 endings, it’s a huge hassle and a huge pain. Such a huge hassle that I’d actually recommend some form of a guide or a walkthrough if you’re going through it the first time, or looking for a particular route.

The visuals are really well done. They’re not crude, but they’re not over the top. They’ve got their own little flair to them which make them appear relatively sci-fi, but the little touches are discreet and well designed. The music? Well, it tends to stick to the background on almost all occasions, with only a few tracks being noteworthy or epic enough to stand out when compared to other visual novels, but the tracks which do stand out are done really well. Gate of Steiner; the main theme, and Sky Clad Observer, the opening tune, are the ones which instantly leap to mind.

No, the voice acting is where the presentation aspect of Steins;Gate shines. Every piece of spoken dialogue is spoken, and they manage to fit in the little things, like the distortion you’d get from phoning someone, to the echo a microphone gives your voice. The voice actors behind this really manage to vary their emotions in their voices, and this results in some very strong voice acting during the big moments.

Steins;Gate is fun. The characters are quirky, charming and have a great chemistry together. Steins;Gate is serious. The plot, the theme and the mood throughout all flow together, and it all bundles up to create a package that’s almost unrivalled in how well researched and thought out the plot is.
But. Steins;Gate isn’t better than it’s anime edition. Apart from one of the routes, by watching the anime, you don’t actually miss out on anything…none of the important moments, none of the spoken dialogue, and none of the quirks and charms of the character, and you get the same quality of visuals and graphics that reside in the novel. Hardcore fans of Steins;Gate should play the novel to get the extra endings and just to see how Okabe thinks, but if you’re a casual fan who’s reading this, to fully enjoy Steins;Gate, you’d be better off with the anime. The anime was just THAT good.

If only all novel adaptations could be that good. D:

Review: Steins;Gate

Steins;Gate

Alex: 2011 is a good year for anime. And for me, actually…This is the second epic masterpiece that this year has thrown on us whilst we were unaware, the other one being Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica, of course. But…well. Steins;Gate outdoes Madoka in every aspect. Steins;Gate is just so good it’s not funny.And this review is so scary to write it’s not funny, either.  Well, Steins;Gate knocked its way up my favorites as it went, eventually perching at a comfortable Number 1, outdoing things such as Clannad After and Towards The Terra. It even beat my all time favorite anime, Kino No Tabi. And over the course of this review, I want to show you why. Why the plot, the characters and the sheer amount of genius that went into writing this show should send the competition running in fear. This is the choice of the Steins Gate! (bad Okarin joke n.n)

So, where do I begin? Let’s start at the beginning. Steins;Gate focuses around a group of friends as they accidentally stumble across a machine that can change the past. In other words, a time machine. But this is where the brilliance of it comes into play. The time machine itself is merely a microwave that’s hooked up to a phone. I won’t lie and say that I understand the science behind it all, but it’s done in a manner that’s both convincing and realistic, so there really aren’t any problems there. As they do more and more with the past, they slowly start to realise that they’re changing something way beyond their power, and well. It all goes sour at the halfway point, as they discover that they’ve done a terrible mistake and have gotten themselves stuck in a time loop of misery and misfortune.

This plot just won’t work without the characters. So it’s good that the characters here work. Enter Okarin, AKA Hourin Kyouma, the self proclaimed mad scientist. Being the only real lead of this anime is a lot to ask of any character, but this is where the actual troubles come into play. Okabe’s development is not the normal way to develop people. So much of it is heavily implied and not actually shown on the screen that the average user might have some serious problems  seeing him as anything more than a two-dimensional character. If that kind of person is you, then go back to your harems and your moe/tsundere animes, this is for those who want a mature story that doesn’t spell every little thing out for you.The same style of development is used for Makise Kurisu, AKA Christina/American Virgin/Assistant/@Channer/The Zombie and whatever crazy names she got given by Okabe. She’s a great character, and a lot of fun to watch on the screen. Mayushii is what many would consider to be the last “starring” character, and she’s the one who you’ll either love or hate. She isn’t the best character, but she’s a good one, and she serves her purpose…which is more than the majority of anime characters have to say about themselves.

The rest of the characters are pretty much relagated to supporting roles, but they serve a very strong point in going from Point A to Point B, and they even have some very powerful scenes. Daru, the Supah H4x0r, Feryis Nyan Nyan, Suzuha the Part-Time-Warrior, Ruka the transgender and Moeka, better known as Shining Finger. Like I said, they aren’t the best of characters but they’re strong, powerful characters when they need to be.

Then again, I might have gotten along better with the characters because of a stronger personal connection. On a very personal level, I relate my character to Okabe very strongly. We both act like some free, crazy idiot who’s enjoying life to it’s fullest, for a reason that we feel unable to tell anyone and to talk to anyone about it. Accompanying me on a personal level is this blog’s co-writer, Mimi. Mimi is very much like Christina, both in our unique bond of friendship we share and in the way that she acts. It’s really unusual for a pair of oddballs such as ourselves to manage to relate and connect with an anime character, so this was a more than welcome treat and something which boosted the connection with the characters – I managed to understand them before their development.

The plot is…well. To use one of my favourite phrases, Steins;Gate turns the chessboard around. Using a clever mix of scriptwriting, scifi jargon and characters acting, the plot itself turns on it’s head so many times that you lose the ability to predict what utterly amazing plot twist it’s going to throw at you next. Because to be honest, all of the plot twists are utterly amazing…and they throw the viewer for a ride. They keep you on the edge of your seat, and they manage to make you chuckle to yourself whilst being kept in suspense. Like I said, it’s got the best thought-out plot i’ve seen in my lifetime, and it’s coupled with the best light-hearted comedy i’ve experienced, working together to create an amazing atmosphere. Result!

The story has clearly been thought out really well. I would love nothing more than to talk about it here, but since it’s so chock-full of spoilers, there are bound to be people who havn’t seen the entirity of the anime, and this would jst completly spoil it for them.Just…take my word that the plot is something which can only be described as a sheer stroke of genius, which is turning into a dying fashion as we go through the moe boom.It’s even so good that it’s worth watching it again, just to pick up on all the clever little hints you’ve missed first time-around.

To conclude…Steins;Gate is what i’d consider to be the best anime i’ve ever seen. Not just because it appeals more to my personal taste, but because it’s the best. It’s not a stupidly long anime, at 24 episodes, so you don’t really have an excuse  not to watch this anime. Do it for yourself, because if you’ve stumbled onto this review you deserve brilliance.

Alex’s Score: 10 Meeps out of 10 (Masterpiece)

Mimi’s Score: 10 Meeps out of 10 (Masterpiece)

Liam’s Score: 10 Meeps out of 10 (Masterpiece)

Dusk’s Score: 10 Meeps out of 10 (Masterpiece)

^Woah, how often are we gonna see that?!

Doofus’ Score: 9 Meeps out of 10 (Great)

Steins;Gate Episode 24

Achievement Point

“Do my godlike powers terrify you?”

Alex: Heh. What an ending.Everything came together well. Perfectly. And it was brilliant. So go watch it.

The movie which got announced kinda shocked me, since I figured that there won’t be any material. Since the DVD Special will probably be Steins;Gate: Hiyoku Renri no Darling, the Xbox bonus, then does that mean that the Movie will be Boukan No Rebellion?

It’s something i’ll look forward to, anyway. Since my Tuesdays are now bland and boring.

Steins;Gate Episode 23

Open The Steins Gate

So, beyond the Alpha Worldline, there’s a Steins Gate worldline? o.o I’m kinda confused here, but I expected it. The divergence meter was wrong.the subtle changes in the OP felt really fitting. Of course, this means it’s time to use Suzuha in warrior kit’s time machine to go and stop Christina dying.

I won’t spoil anything.But it’s a wonderful penultimate episode.Christina and Okarin’s development throughout the series really payed off here, and created what can only be called one amazing episode. And the mystery around Christina’s death was well…perfect.The way Makise Kurisu turns into a villian is painted wonderfully, and the buildup around controlling time and starting World War III..it’s just damn perfect.Hell, even Mayushii was perfect, even though I don’t like her much. I’m going off on a tangent. It was brilliant. Watch it.

And then of course, that ending comes along and explains everything about the Steins Gate. It’s called that…because it means nothing. Brilliant, Kyouma!

Steins;Gate Episode 22

Being Meltdown

Life means no do-overs. Right, Kurisu?

Alex: This…was such a powerful episode. Christina is one of the strongest characters i’ve seen in anime, and this episode just pushed Steins;Gate to my top 3 in favorites. With the 18 year old pervert genius girl having no way out of this dead end fate that she found herself trapped into, she saw only one solution: remove herself from the equation.

But, this doesn’t save Okabe. I was right, Christina does have a weaker version of the reading steiner, as she confesses that she remembers everything to Okabe…and confesses her love.

If you weren’t touched at this episode, then you probably havn’t let yourself get into the power of this anime. The relationship between Okabe and Christina is beyond explaining, something which has gone across many, many worldlines and defied fate itself. The amazing chemistry the two of them share, and the amazing voice acting and writing of the anime only helps to get the point that this is a very special couple across even further.

But, at the end. Hasn’t Okabe gone too far..? He’s gone to the 1.1% worldline. He’s opened the gate of Steins, and let the chaos within flow out, as Suzuha arrives yet again to request Okabe’s assistance in stopping World War III. I have no idea what to expect.