Tales of the Abyss Anime

I watched the Tales of the Abyss anime the other day.
Omg. wow! :3

Not only was it pretty, but the action was fantastic. People had fingernails and detailed eyes and it wasn’t just because it was a bunch of still shots with someone’s mouth moving as the only action, it was because they paid attention to the detail in EVERY frame.

For those who don’t know, Tales of the Abyss was originally a PS2 game by Namco/Bandai, in which a whiny boy has to save the world and grows into a man in the process. In fact, if you’ve played Tales of Vesperia, you’ve pretty much played Tales of the Abyss, except the characters are different. Now, I think this is a good and bad thing that the plot was so similar. It’s good because, obviously, the plot is working. It’s bad, because … never mind. I enjoyed both games! :D There’s nothing bad at all about reusing the plot!

Anyway. Back to TotA anime.

Essentially, the anime followed the game by each plot point with a few minor variations. Mostly it was condensing some stuff and relocating certain scenes, but it didn’t matter really because it still successfully told the story in 26 episodes without Luke getting TOO whiny. Although they did keep my favorite line of “But there’s MUD! I might get my shoes dirty!” Ohhh Luke. So special. And the line “Its the arrival of The Amazing Guy!” Ohh Guy. You’re special too. And I wanted to Yaoi Slash you and Luke so bad because you were asking for it.

My only complaints were that in a truncated form (of 26 episodes as opposed to 100+ hrs of game play) some of the reasoning behind things got kinda flimsy. Luke and Asch’s battle, while by the time it came about in the game, I was all like “YEAH! That boy needs a whoopin!” in the anime, it was like… “why are they fighting? Because Asch is being pissy. oh. Okay.” But I think that may have been due to the animators leaving some of Luke’s lines out and them adding a few scenes that extended the interaction between Luke and Asch. Thus negating LUKE’s need to fight Asch by the time they got to that scene, even though Asch obviously hadn’t gotten the closure he wanted between the two of them. However, they did succeed in explaining a few things better that had been unclear in the game. Such as why Asch was sick/dying. Something along the lines of “Two exact copies of living things can’t exist in the same world so one of you is going to spontaneously combust, and it’s usually the original.” D:

Also, the truncated version of the game made the various plot twists of the various characters seem more like a soap opera instead of exciting. And that made me sad, because everyone had an awesome tragic past and they deserved to have awesome tragic pasts because they were otherwise functional DESPITE their awesome tragic pasts (Except Guy and his gynophobia, but that was a character quirk rather than a flaw). I could tell that the animator’s favorite party consisted of Luke, Tear, and Jade, with an alternating 4th who was usually NOT Anise. And they skimmed on the battles, some, but if you’d played the game, you already knew “OH GOD NOT LARGO! Ugh I hated his battle!” and so they made it mercifully short, with a couple of action shots of the characters getting kicked around and doing some of their named attacks. Now I can’t tell if the subtitle people put this in, or if the animators put it in, but when one of the characters did a named attack, their attack+portrait would appear at the top of the screen, just like in the game, and I thought that was fracking AWESOME! Whoever did it, seriously got me to LOL and applaud. I’m thinking the animators did it though, since the subtitles didn’t always match what the attack name was (and this is only available in fansub, sorry English speakers who hate reading). So, added bonus to those who’ve played the game before.

Overall, I think they did a really good job of making an anime that referenced a game and made it GOOD ENOUGH that people who haven’t played the game can watch it and understand what’s going on. I’d still recommend playing the game too, because it’s an awesome game and there’s a WHOLE like 100+ card skits that the anime left out that even I haven’t found all of. But if PS2 isn’t your cup of tea, watch the anime. :3