No Game, No Life Episode 1 Notes

April 9th, 2014.

 A Shiny World, Arbitrary Rules.

This show is animated by Madhouse. The preview was very colourful. I expect this to be a light and fun romp, nothing serious. I expect cool and even “Too cool for school” moments where our main protagonist pulls a fast one over his enemies, and situations of a pseudo intellectual stand-off.

In other words, I’m here for light fun. Let’s hope it delivers :)

Thoughts and Notes:

1) “Reality is Boring! I want home!”:

No Game, No Life episode 1 anime notes - The old world sucks

1) “Urban legends are a kind of a wish, because in reality it’s usually the least interesting answer that is the correct one.” Hm, that’s actually a neat idea.

2) The fight in the beginning, including in terms of colours reminded me of the Accel World OVA. The “Queen” immediately transforming into a fan of the Blanks and then the boob-service reminded us we’re definitely in shounen-land ;-) “Someone is powerful, so we must challenge and/or worship them!” is a common theme, and then how might makes friends.

3) Those horrible energy bars people use to replace actually eating meals? That’s a very gamer/young adult who just moved out thing to eat. From anime, with all the small stores and solo-apartments, it feels it’s also a very Japanese thing as well. Of course, it’d be silly to base my opinion on anime alone, but that’s the impression anime often gives. Ready-made lunches, which only ostensibly contain what your food requires.

4) Man, those eyes. He reminds me somewhat of Hachiman from OreGairu. Just like in that show, while he may rule his own little world, the show clearly doesn’t paint his position as enviable.

5) Ah, I kept wondering where the other two people controlling the blanks are. I see, each controls two.

6) “The World is chaotic, unreasonable, and unfair.” – That’s why people shut themselves out of it. Regardless of whether that sentiment is true or not, when you think it is true, you shut yourself out, and try to create a world that is fair, and has reason and rhythm, such as within games. This bit is also very Hachiman.

“The world has no meaning… it is the wish of those who realize it, that’d it’d be a little more interesting.” – No, no, no. If the world is interesting, it’s often because of that “chaos”. When everything is fair, and everything is reasonable, that’s exactly the world that gives birth to urban legends, because that world isnot chaotic. Silly narrator, stop contradicting yourself.

7) “Chess is no different than tic-tac-toe,” while the sentiment holds, and it’s all an issue of complexity….yeah. I guess this is to show us what a game badass little sister is, who also plays with her feet rather than her hands.

Almost thought they lost here.

8) “What do you think of your world?” – Yes! Not only is the world a “game” without rules or known goal, but this question is one without a perfect answer they can game either. Do they know how to even begin to answer it? They must be forced to change their thought patterns, or retreat even deeper into them to deal with it. The question, not the world.

2) A Shiny New World:

No Game, No Life episode 1 anime notes - The new world sucks

1) Getting the ten rules feels kind of ridiculous, but that is the whole point. They wanted a world where all the rules are known and agreed upon by all, and now they’re here, so it’s important for them to know the rules. Especially if they’ll often win by rules-lawyering or blindsiding people with the rules, which is sure to happen.

2) In the final moment, Sora would shield Shiro from death. Though it was a meaningless gesture, it was still an interesting one.

3) A new game is like a shiny new world opened before you.

4) I actually liked the origin story of the world. It had a nice vibe, Kugimiya Rie’s voice as a god fit, and the blurry art was a nice touch as well. A world where the One True God is the one who was wise or cowardly enough to just not participate in the war the other deities had waged in order to become the supreme god, and won by default. A nice parable-fable.

5) Yup, as I suspected, when Shiro played the chess game. Shiro plays where planning and foresight is concerned. Sora, who was going to tell her when her opponent was trying to lure her is there for figuring out what the other side is thinking. Gambling should involve them both, for Shiro’s statistical approach, and his approach to reading the opponents. A division of labour.

6) “A single hand of poker.” Ok, this is somewhat ridiculous, seeing as most poker professionals don’t track gains over a single hand, but across a series of hands, just in order to eliminate said luck.

7) I did wonder how she’ll charge her phone. Solar charger, got it.

8) An offer you can’t refuse: A maiden only wearing a thin sheet knocking on your door in the middle of the night with tears in her eyes. Considering the preview, our “master of negotiation” is going to get swindled into helping someone else. Then again, if you’re in it for the game, then playing is its own victory.

Music – It played at the end of the episode, but I suspect it’s the OP – Very vibrant colours. Looks pretty. Forgettable music. Shows us there’d be fan-service.

Post Episode Thoughts:

No Game, No Life episode 1 anime notes - Sora needs sleep

Well, this was more or less what I expect. Trashy fun. It sure is trashy, but it’s also a solid amount of unsophisticated fun. Let’s see how many layers they can add on top, how much they can complicate it and add elements of subterfuge. “I cheat and they cheat” isn’t any fun, unless you actually try to outsmart them or are pushed into a corner.

Even with the chess, they’d been pushed hard, but we hadn’t actually been shown that. Come on show, show us what you’ve got, and no, I’m not talking about boobies and panties ;-)

Return to the No Game, No Life Episodic Notes page.

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