The Winter Games 2018 has come to a close. For the final part of this gigantic and unnecessarily ambitious collaboration project, the participants will share their thoughts on the experience. Let’s read on.
First of all, congrats to Irina for winning the very first Winter Games. She creamed us all with her on-point predictions and the win is well deserved. I guess she wasn’t kidding when she predicted she’d win the games before it even started. None of us came close to her as she keeps widening the gap during the latter half of the games. Her prize would be a guest post from the loser of the games. Who lost?
Ok, f*ck it. I lost! I suck!
A Brief History
The Winter Games is honestly just a cute excuse for me to do episodic blogging. I really do not want to do it, because I don’t watch shows on a weekly basis. A lot of people miss great shows because they limit their choices in a given season. I don’t do that. I watch everything, and while my method is unhealthy, I really prefer it over a weekly venture. But, yknow what, five years blogging is a good excuse to change. I opened myself up to a brand new experience, but I didn’t want to do it alone.
Originally, I pitched this idea to our collab discord server, and it was promptly shut down. I guess some people just can’t commit to weekly viewings too. When a bunch of people declined, I grabbed Leap and AstralGemini, fresh from our healthy Hyping Up collab and I asked them “wanna join me in a weekly viewing thing?” and they said yes. I have my team, and it’s going to be awesome. Later on, Irina read my pitch on the collab server, and she agreed to join as well. The end result is a group of vastly different people collabing for a very long time. We chose our anime last minute, and there were some complications with our original choices. At the very end, a week into the Winter 2018, we decided on our shows. Leap chose Grancrest, AG chose Yuru Camp, Irina chose Sanrio Boys. I opted not to choose one, since a collaboration is a group effort and I wanted the project to be something we all own. Eleven glorious weeks later, and I’d say the collab was a success.
There were a lot more details to be ironed out, but it was expected for a first venture. You don’t get things perfect on your first try, so I welcomed all the problems. I was honestly expecting the collab to fall apart born out of our competitiveness, but it didn’t really happen. I’m not sure if we just didn’t voice our complaints or we were just really cool with everything. Eventually, Leap came up with a system for scoring the predictions and we just chime in whether the point is warranted or not. We also went from a 1 point system to a 2 point system, and I gotta say, the race was intense. I started out hot as I lead the pack and Irina actually fell behind in the first few weeks. Just when you thought Irina is losing, and she did once kinda accepted her fate, she suddenly shot up from just a week’s worth of predictions. It was insane, and it was Leap and AG on the rear for the most of the games. Leap even accepted his fate as well, until they both shot up the points ladder as well. I fell to last week upon the closing weeks and I never recovered. Leap got a two point lead ahead of me, and it was insane. The games is so unpredictable that it did end up becoming an exciting thing to look forward to each week. Of course, it also became a tedious thing because you do it on a weekly basis, but the Winter Games did made the experience more fun.
Congrats to AG on a strong comeback placing second place. Congrats to Leap as well for not losing, because even he was surprise of my unbelievable dry spell when it came to Yuru Camp I could not predict anything out of the show, and I’m not sure if it’s a good or bad thing. The shows we chose actually had a big impact on the games as well. You’ll run out of predictions for Yuru Camp, since the show has no story. You’ll lose points with Grancrest because plot progression happens randomly there, and you can hope Sanrio Rangers will bail you out since the show is ridiculously easy to predict. Scoring points is never a sure thing though, and I think that’s really what made the Winter Games a fun experience.
For the Loser….
It was very late into the planning stage that I suggest a “penalty” for the loser. I didn’t expect it to be me, but we agreed that the loser will review a show of the others choosing. Had I not lost, I would’ve given these bastards something awful, like Diabolik Lovers or something. Sadly, I lost. The group agreed that I will review Humanity has Declined. I also reviewed it, but I know I can make a better one, so expect a redux review of Jinrui wa Suitaishimashita for this month.
Irina also suggested a guest post, and I said sure, why not. I agreed on doing one of my unnecessarily long reviews on her blog. It’ll be a look at Time of Eve, a solid tear jerker of a show about a bunch of really sad people….and robots. I’d be re-watching a lot of things for April, and it’s funny because I also don’t re-watch shows. Weekly viewing and re-watching is something I don’t do, but I guess I’m breaking that habit.
To make our closing ceremony posts uniform, we all agreed on answering a list of questions. Two questions from each blogger. For Irina, she asks:
Has the experience taught you anything?
Yeah. When it comes to predictions, my five years as an anime reviewer means sh*t. The Winter Games truly made us all equals, and I love that aspect of it. I can drag a one year WP blogger into the games, and my experience with this Winter Games won’t help me beat them. The unpredictably of the games truly made it fun.
How did you train to prepare for the games?
I didn’t. This was, first and foremost, a fun collaboration for me. I won’t lie, as the weeks progress, we all did play to win. Despite that, it was still a fun way for me to do episodic blogging.
AstralGemini asks: Do you believe that the prediction games helped or hindered your viewing experience?
No, not for me. Well, I was excitedly waiting for Pine Cone-chan to make her return, but I enjoyed the episodes whether I got points for it or not. Upon reviewing the predictions, I was often genuinely surprised at how on-point the others got. It came to a point where I did enjoy episodic viewing, and I would write lengthy posts about my thoughts on the episode. Sh*tting on Sanrio Rangers, trying to make sense of Grancrest and genuinely feeling happy when Nadeshiko eats all became a wonderful thing to write about, whether I was winning or not. To be honest, I didn’t even keep track of the scores since I just really wanted to try episodic viewing, first and foremost.
Which was your favorite/least favorite/most surprising of our picks?
I think he meant the predictions, so I’d say my favorite prediction is my off handed “coffin will appear” one that I shared once for Yuru Camp. It wasn’t official, but it suddenly happened. Of course, Irina did the same when she kept joking about aliens and one did appear.
My least favorite predictions would be the general ones. It’s a personal non-fave of mine since “character appears” is a given, but I lost so I have no right to complain. To be honest, I did go for general ones as well since I ran out of predictions for most weeks.
The most surprising pick would be AG’s ‘the drunk teacher will be their club advisor”. Given Yuru Camp’s love of food and zen, I never thought they’d alter the status quo in any form.
Now, Leap asks: Did the thought of having to make predictions influence your watching of the show?
Nope. Again, I was in it for the episodic blogging. I did start hating Grancrest since I can’t land a decent prediction in that show, and I hate Yuru Camp since I often ran out of decent predictions given how empty the episodes are. At some point, I just kept going for “character will eat” predictions. Sanrio is different. I hate that show in general, but I lose respect for it when the most clichéd of predictions happened in it. I believe it was the beach episode where AG and Leap did a massive comeback as they just write some of the dumbest predictions you can see in a beach episode, like beach volley and watermelon bashing.
How did you come up with your predictions?
You cannot create a decent method of predictions for the shows. I just go on a week by week basis, and it still didn’t really work out for me. Grancrest is unpredictable. One episode ends with “preparing to attack” a castle and the next episode will not feature the attack but just gloss over it entirely. So whatever prediction you make in the previous episode will most likely not happen in the next. For Yuru Camp, there was nothing there. At first, I didn’t want to do easy predictions like “characters will cook” until I ran out of good predictions and just went with “characters will cook”. Marshmallow shows are hard to predict, I learn from this venture.
TPAB, the loser, sucky mc-suck face, asks: Who was your favorite character during the winter games?
I ask this because you all know who my fave is.
What moment completely caught you off guard – Good or Bad?
For Yuru Camp, it was the appearance of all the random things in the OP making it to the show. The alien, the moustache and the hovering tent all appeared. It’s a shame I never caught on to the pattern early on.
For Grancrest, it was the sex scene. Random as hell.
For Sanrio Boys, it was Kouta getting his first period. Boy, that was a glorious fun time.
What Lies Ahead
We’re doing it again. Sure, it was exhausting and we all felt burned out by the end, but we’re coming back for more. Irina, Leap and TPAB are participating for the Fall Games 2018!!!!
Nothing concrete is planned yet, since it’s a long ways off. I think we agreed on two shows, and Irina, the winner of the previous games, will pick them.
Again, we plan on making this bigger and more fun, so if you’re interested in joining and if you’re already doing episodic reviews already, then sound off below.
Keiko is already on board, and I think Karandi is a maybe. Either way, we have four, maybe five, players and we can make it bigger!! More unnecessarily ambitious!!! Join us!!!!
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For the last time as well, check out my collab with KEIKO as we discuss the final episode of KOI WA AMEAGARI NO YOU NI HERE.