Fate/Zero Review

Hello there. This is the Pant-less anime blogger. This is review number eight and I’m reviewing a pretty awesome anime. I’m about to review Fate Zero, which is the sequel to Fate Stay Night. It’s a thirteen episode anime about the events that happened when Shirou’s dad participated in the Holy Grail war.

I’ll get to see Saber again so that’s enough reason for me to pick up this anime. I really love Fate Stay Night so I can’t wait to see King Arthur kick some heavy duty ass. It’s going to be awesome.

Story

Two hundred years ago, the families known as the first three: the Einzbern, Makiri and Tohsaka, worked together to summon the Holy Grail. It is said to have the power to grant any wish. But the Holy Grail would answer only one prayer. The families’ cooperation turned to merciless warfare. That was the beginning of the Holy Grail wars.

Ever since then, once every sixty years, the Holy Grail appears in the town of Fuyuki. It selects seven magi, carefully chosen, and grants them the power to summon the powerful heroic spirits known as servants. Archer, Saber, Lancer, Rider, Assassin, Caster and Berserker. Divided into these seven classes, Servants fights to the death, to determine who is worthy to win the Grail.

The story of Fate Zero takes place 10 years prior to the events of Fate/stay night, detailing the events of the 4th Holy Grail War in Fuyuki City.

Taking the Pants Off

Now this is an amazing anime. I have some complaints about its predecessor about how the anime only revolved around Shirou and Saber. In fate zero, the format is completely renewed. It’s true that the anime focuses on the Shirou’s dad and the Holy Grail war he participated in but the anime has a completely different feel to it. The Holy Grail war is given more importance. It no longer revolves around a single participant, the anime focuses on all seven participants. The anime gives more importance to the masters and their slaves.

In fate stay night, it was more about Shirou trying to win the Holy Grail and the enemies are just fed to Saber one after the other. This time, the approach is different. It starts out with the participants being chosen. Each participant comes from a family that practices magic. Every participant has their own reason for obtaining the Grail. It’s clearly established that you are not just going to see Shirou’s dad beat up the other participants. The story is more developed. There is a high stake feel in the anime. The desire to win is present among each participant and that really make me smile from ear to ear.

This anime clearly surpasses Fate Stay Night in more ways than one. I am very appreciative though in the way the anime introduces each character. The strength of the anime is in the characters. Every participant is likeable and their relationship with their servants is nicely developed. The characters are well rounded and their position in the war is heavily focused. I was very excited to meet Shirou’s dad, Emiya Kiritsugu, and was taken aback when he was introduced. He is not like Shirou who has a sense of heroism in him. Shirou fights to end the war and stop people’s suffering. It’s an ideal he got from his father so I was hoping the same thing from Kiritsugu. He isn’t like Shirou and his role isn’t like that of a hero. Kiritsugu is more like a man whose purpose in the war is something he keeps to himself. He is good with firearms, ambushes and military tactics. It was a great surprise to see how completely opposite he is from Shirou.

I was expecting seeing the same servants again. I was very excited to see familiar faces like Archer but alas, he wasn’t here. Instead, with the rules of the Holy Grail war explained more deeply, we get to see new summons in the war. These servants are past heroes and villains who have some notoriety in history. These servants are very nicely developed. They do not just blindly follow their master. They have their own ideals to uphold. It makes for some interesting interactions too. The servants do not just fight all the time. They also talk and exchange ideals. It’s a nice surprise from what you used to expect. I was expecting them to just beat each other senseless but it was really nice to see them talk about why they fight in the Holy Grail war.

There are also some old characters here though. I was very happy to at least see Gilgamesh and his arrogant smug. Some familiar characters are also here like Rin, Sakura, Illya and, of course, Saber. You won’t really miss the past characters like Rider or Archer because the new characters make up for it. The pairings are very fun to watch. It feels odd not to cheer for Saber but you really will cheer for other characters too. These characters are strong and aren’t just a stepping stone for Saber. Some characters are fiercely powerful and it just gets exciting knowing that Saber will lock horns with them later on.

Saber’s relationship with her master is a little bit distant though. Kiritsugu is a very cold person who wants nothing to do with Saber. It’s completely different from the relationship she had with Shirou. It’s kinda odd because Kiritsugu prefer to work in the shadows and slowly smoke out his enemies. I was expecting a little cheesy romance but it’s nice knowing the anime completely abandon that crap and just focus on the action. There are other blossoming pairings though. I’m trying my best not to spoil it because it serves as the juicy center of the anime. Some pairings are really good and their attitudes blend well with each other. The viewers get to easily connect with the rest of the characters and I can only suspect it’s for the purpose of an emotional attachment when these characters die. They will die. It’s the whole point of the Holy Grail war.

While Saber’s relationship with her masters isn’t fully uncovered, the action scenes very much revolve around her. The fight scenes are the best part of the anime. You can just tell how much work they put into it. The fights are intelligently worked through and the pacing is smart. Each servant has something new to offer to the table. There is no sign of one character easily dying. These characters are really powerful in their own right and it’ll be really amazing to see them fight to the end.

That fight to the death will happen on the second season though. This season is more of a set up to the high octane fight you’ll expect in season too. This season is more about knowing the characters and being attached to them. I cannot wait for season two.

Sight and Sound

The anime really went all out to make the animation amazing. The fight scenes are really smooth. The camera angles are free flowing and it just really looks like something the animators worked hard on. The anime also uses CGI in most parts. The CGI on Berserker’s armor is nicely done. CGI usually looks out of place in anime but works really good here.

The anime looks really high def. The scenes are visually appealing. The anime shines compared to the animation quality of fate stay night. The animation in Fate zero is better and more amazing.

The sound is familiar. The OP and ED are amazing and the opening/ending sequences provide a better insight on the characters. Just like a fast paced anime, the sound greatly enhances the action.

Overall

9/10 “It far exceeds Fate Stay Night in almost everything. Story, character and action.”

I have yet to see the season two but I can tell it’ll be amazing. If you’re a fan of great action anime then Fate zero will not disappoint. If you’re picking this up because of Fate Stay Night then prepare to get your mind blown.

Thoughts~

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