Anime Seasonals 2018 — The Winter Games: Week 3

The games are well underway!

Welcome back to Week 3 (!!) of the 2018 Anime Seasonals – The Winter Games; again featuring me, AstralGemini, Irina, and The Pantless Anime Blogger !

Things are starting to heat up as we each now have points on the board, coming off of last week’s run of predictions! The official tally (of points and our predictions) is over at Irina’s blog so do hop on over there to see how each blogger is doing not only for this week but for the succeeding weeks of the game’s duration as well. But, to give you guys a quick survey of the lay of the land as it is currently:

Leading the pack is myself and AstralGemini with 2 points a piece, with Irina and TPAB not that far behind at 1 point each. Slow start for us all, admittedly, but I have a feeling we’re gonna start picking up the pace now that we’ve gotten our feet wet.

An important thing that I forgot to mention last week is that predictions do indeed stack — meaning if we didn’t get something right the first go around, the prediction sticks until either it happens or it doesn’t by the end of the series. This is crucial in a way if we decide to play the long game and try to predict things that are more likely to happen down the line as opposed to taking shots in the dark for things that could happen in the very next episode.

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BUT, while we have framed this little collab of ours as a competition, we run the risk of losing out on the fun of making wild predictions that turn out to be true down the line. As I said in Week 1-2, we’re doing this in good fun, and the “batsu game” we’ve setup was only meant as an incentive (it’s not even that bad, lol). In line with that, and in keeping with the spirit of “fun”, let’s try being a bit more adventurous with our run this week shall we?

Laid-Back Camp
(Yuru Camp)
Episode 3
tl;dr:Nadeshiko is not a total ditz — and that makes me happy.
Her sister, on the other hand, is waaaay too OP.

I split my predictions last time which is just swell (I’m on the board!). I would’ve gotten two predictions down right out of the gate but yeah “they make hotpot” was such a gimme that I couldn’t bring myself to go through with it — I mean, it would’ve been more surprising if they didn’t end up making hotpot because something came up, but Yuru Camp’s direction isn’t that complex. In line with that I might’ve expected a tad bit too much from our Shimarin in that my prediction of “Nadeshiko inviting Chiaki and Aoi over” may have been too much too soon. My thought process behind that was (1) you usually see hotpot being served among a grop of people and (2) episode 3 is usually where a lot of major developments occur. It seems my handle on moeblobs is still shaky in that regard.

But (!!) we did have Nadeshiko chopping up vegetables, even taking over most of the cooking in this episode, which was pretty neat. I didn’t want Nadeshiko to be too much of a hopeless case, so more than getting it right, I’m mostly just glad she’s not a total ditz and is actually pretty good with her hands (’cause otherwise she would’ve been very insufferable down the road). Boy did that hotpot look good though. I wonder if it’s the last we’ll see of it? When Saitou and Rin (yes, I realize I’m using Saitou’s family name and Rin’s first name whenever I refer to ’em, lol) were talking about camping in the winter, Rin brings up hotpot as being one of the positives for doing so — so maybe Nadeshiko hotpot is gonna be a thing? We’ll see.

Since we brought up Saitou, our other blobs make brief appearances too; with the aforementioned Saitou getting the shortest end of the stick in appearing not more than maybe a couple of minutes towards the end (shame); Aoi and Chiaki we see getting part-time jobs (wow they’re more responsible than when I was their age) to fund their outdoor club activities. In hindsight, Rin thus appears to be very loaded in that respect, being able to afford (what we can assume to be) quality camping gear on a high schooler’s allowance. I guess we could find out later on that she actually works part-time too, but Rin being rich kinda.. first her character more, I feel like.

But alas, the best appearance of any character this episode has to go to Nadeshiko’s older sister. I mean really: drives her little sister up to some camping grounds; pays for the camping fee; goes back to said camping grounds after leaving earlier just so Nadeshiko has a place to sleep; sets an alarm to wake Nadeshiko up because she wanted to see the sunrise; and even goes for a breakfast run — Nee-san, you’re the real MVP :3 Well, I guess everything I listed is pretty much par for the course of what an older sibling would do in that situation, but it was still nice to see. I hope she still gets some appearances even after our main group of five gets set in stone.

>> Predictions
~ Somebody accidentally hits the walls of the clubroom (action)
^ Because it’s so small xD The next “arc” is about the outdoor activities club after all so it’s safe to say we get a couple of scenes there (plus we’re probably about to lose this room anyway). They made that joke before (in the first episode) so there’s precedent of this happening, lol.
~ Rin doesn’t join the Outdoor Activities Club just yet (plot)
Now, I’m actually torn about this. I mean, it’s completely possible that she’s made a complete turnaround after having spent the night camping with Nadeshiko (and it’s already the fourth episode coming up next so our main cast should have formed up by now) — but I’m sticking with this in the hopes that maaaaybe she joins in episode 5 instead

Record of Grancrest War
(Grancrest Senki)
Episode 3
tl;dr:They don’t mess around with these battle scenes.

My baseline for military skirmishes is Arslan Senki for the most part and Grancrest, barring all the magic-y stuff, is actually doing pretty well in that department. I suppose that’s A-1 for ya. Still, credit where credit is due. Episode 3 is more or less every viewers’ benchmark for whether or not they should drop a certain title and while Grancrest did up the ante here with not one but two showings of combat, I gotta admit I expected we’d get a bit more meat to chew on plotwise. We do, however, get a taste of the more political aspects of the story and I liked that a lot — Theo taking on the name of a legendary hero to rally his people feels very Game of Thrones which has now made me view this show under a gentler light.

Not that I don’t still see this as “Fire Emblem: The Animation”, I mean, they added a priestess to their party in the opening minutes! All they’re missing now is a flying cavalry unit and they’re good to go conquer the realm as they see fit. Too bad the OP animation has nothing like that — next to join are what appear to be twins related to or of the same race as Rogue-kun (I coud do a better a job at remembering names, I know, but lol I like calling them by their warrior class) Wish they could’ve done a better job introducing our new character here though. I assume we’ll get her backstory in the next episode (or maybe not at all), but yeah no, she just knocked on the door and said she was gonna join and Theo.. just let her join. Again, things happening as a matter of consequence.

Speaking of our boy Theo, he doesn’t pull through for us in this week for our predictions, which is fine since he does make up for it by being interesting now finally He’s still a little too dry as character for my liking (which the show does comically allude to) but eyyy if he’s the slightest bit predictable then that just means we’ll all have an easier time, jk. In all seriousness his no-nonsense and charismatic nature is growing on me in that I appreciate that he’s not all “Siluca! You’re the reason why I fight!” just yet. Yet. Please. And Siluca, girl, you’re literally in the middle of a war (while also planning to start a new one mind you) and you’re straight-up falling for this guy, I can’t xD Seriously, while I do actually appreciate tacked-on romances, let’s save it till a bit later on in the story shall we?

Bar none my favorite revelation in this episode was one that came off some very misplaced exposition right at the start, with Priestess saying that Mages tap into Chaos for their magic, and while that was an odd time to bring it up I did find that little piece of information very interesting. It basically confirms my earlier assumption that Chaos is pretty much a chaotic (duh) neutral existence. I mean, we do find out in the first episode that Crests come from Chaos too, so I do wonder about the whole Grand Hall Tragedy, and whether or not it was an orchestrated thing (probs is) — because so far we have seen a fair bit of what people are capable of when wielding Chaos: they can cast spells (the Mages); enhance physical capabilities (like I assume is the case with Aishela and all the other tattooed warriors); and they are the source of Crests (the Lords).

>> Predictions
~ Siluca summons a creature from Chaos (action)
She summoned a twin-headed dog in the first episode, and a Cait Sith in the second, so I think we’re due one since she skipped out on doing so this past episode.
~ Theo and the gang will be granted an audience with Marrine Kreische, but Villar’s mage will ambush/attack them en route (plot)
^ Potentially sabotaging Theo’s aligning with the Factory Federation (‘Cause Marrine doesn’t look like a nice person at all) Otherwise why setup the whole thing with Villar as early as the second episode? xD

Sanrio Boys
(Sanrio Danshi)
Episode 3
tl;dr:That arc resolved fast o_O.”

I thought for sure this was going to be a two-episode arc. I was even prepared to go theorizing about why Yuri “hates” her brother so much — I mean geez talk about having a sharp tongue (oh wow she’s voiced by Akane Fujita, haha! now I’m even more stoked to translate that interview of hers). I would’ve gotten it wrong though because before this episode I was fully convinced that Yuu and Yuri’s beef was going to revolve around Sanrio, when it’s actually an add-on at best (actually, if you strip away the Sanrio motif their arc still holds perfectly well, lol) That should be something to keep in mind in the coming episodes.

But let’s talk about this episode first before we move on to what’s to come. Biggest surprise this time around was Yuu lashing out at Yuri (to the point of hitting her almost) I was expecting a full-on verbal beat down from Yuri but Yuu turned the tables on her on that one quick. I don’t really blame him for exploding the way he did (the attempted smack may’ve been a bit too much though). Kouta butting it, although probably played to be more of a “Oh wow he really does think of this guy as his friend” kind of gesture, instead came across as completely random to comedic effect. I like how he straight up ditched his old friends too, jk xD

The way this arc resolved also kinda left me a bit puzzled. The underlying source of Yuri’s angst appears to stem from the fact Yuu started acting different towards her — now assuming a more parental role rather that of being simply her older brother; which I found… weird. Yuu being the way he is perfectly sound given the situation they’ve found themselves in; with their parents being away and all. Yuri’s disdain towards Yuu thus comes across as fairly baseless if not plain irrational. In hindsight, they might’ve meant for her actions to portray “childishness” instead.

At any rate, I got my close up shot of Kouta’s eyes. The show really does like its close ups so I’ll refrain from cheese-ing that specific prediction for the next episode. Although I did predict that Yuri was a fan of Sanrio too (at least in her childhood) it was barely a factor in the plot, so that was a no-go. We still nabbed a point at least. Next episode is looking to be a Shunsuke-centric based on the post-credits scene so that should be… something.

>> Predictions
~ Kouta says kira kira (“sparkling”, or any other derivative) (action)
I really want him to go back to this because he kinda got away from it from the first episode. Characters wanting to “shine” have always interested me to some degree (more so because of its thematic use in depicting the “springtime of youth” in Japanese fiction), and I wanna see how they’ll play with the trope.
~ Shunsuke is bullied by his soccer club senpais because of his ace status (plot)
^ Out of envy for his skills; possibly even beaten up. This is just me trying to draw from my well of sports anime knowledge (which doesn’t really run deep) and in my experience the talented freshman ace is almost always the target of ill-will by upperclassmen.

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That’s my run for this week! I got some points last week but let’s not forget that this isn’t a race but it’s a marathon — an early lead won’t mean much when everyone starts finding their groove. And speaking of everyone, don’t forget to check out the other seasonalists'(?) posts as well!

AstralGeminiWeek 3

IrinaLaid-Back Camp (3), Record of Grancrest War (3), Sanrio Boys (3)

TPABWeek 3

Did you get some of your predictions right this week?
Let us know in the comments below!

7 thoughts on “Anime Seasonals 2018 — The Winter Games: Week 3

  1. Pingback: The Winter Games 2018: Week 3 – The Pantless Anime Blogger

  2. I would have also liked a bit more from Grancrest this week. While I still enjoyed it (standard fantasy with gaming elements so very little not to like), I kept thinking how much better it could be if… And there’s just so many things that could be better.
    Thanks for sharing your thoughts and good luck with your predictions this week.

    • Grancrest really does seem to have a good world at its disposal but we’ve yet to see the show actually use it — yet. I’m hopeful a bit now that it was announced that it’s going to be a two-cour, so a lot of room to grow still.
      Thanks~! And likewise, thanks for dropping by Karandi 🙂

  3. Pingback: Winter Games 2018: Episode 3 – The Zodiac Room

  4. After watching this episode I have a bit of a theory regarding yuu and yuri’s parents. I wonder if maybe one of them was abusive. It has been my belief that physical violence is something more often learned from a parent when it comes out in a situation like this and this I believe it is possible Yuu’s parents hit him and his sister when they were children. This could also explain why Yuri might resent her brother for taking a more parental role, because she automatically associates that with abuse and abandonment. She wants him to just be her brother. unfortunately I do not think this will be expanded upon.

    • That’s a very interesting theory you have there — and you’re right (or, well, I agree that), more often than not this type of behavior stems from having seen it first-hand during ages when children are most impressionable. Yuu moving to strike Yuri would support this if he too had been subject to physical abuse. I do share your dismay in that they probably won’t delve deeper into this narrative (which is why I was a little bit disappointed that the resolution to this “arc” came in the same episode it was introduced)

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