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Star Ocean EX: V1 The Inception (ep.1-5)
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Claude and his father are on their mission to investigate the unexplored planet, Mirokinia. When they arrive at the planet, Claude mysteriously gets transported to another planet called Expel. Wandering around in the woods trying to find a way back home, he saves a girl named Rena from a monster with his phase gun. Rescued by him, she tells him that he is the Legendary Warrior of Light whom she's been looking for. In search of Sorcery Globe which is believed to be the source of evils, Claude and Rena set off on their journey that will determine the world's fate
The sword-and-sorcery comedy-adventure Star Ocean Ex is based on the Playstation 2 game, Star Ocean the Second Story. On his first mission in space, Claude explores a mysterious power source on an unknown planet. He disobeys his heroic father's orders and is transported to another world. When Claude rescues the elfin Rena from a monster, she hails him as the prophesied warrior who will save her planet from a dire threat. And they've had to contend with monsters, earthquakes, and other disasters since the mysterious Sorcery Globe appeared. A hero in spite of himself, Claude realizes the Sorcery Globe looks suspiciously like the structure that transported him across dimensions. He and Rena set out to solve the mystery, and encounter a number of standard-issue characters along the way. This lightweight series will appeal primarily to fans of the original game. (Rated 13 and older: violence, minor risqué humor) --Charles Solomon
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Star Ocean EX chronicles Claude and Rena's journey to save the planet. Like most RPGs, these two travel to different towns and dungeons, recruit party members, gain information, and level up in terms of skills and abilities. Eventually, Claude and Rena form one big party to troop to the final boss' lair and attack. Having played the game prior to watching the anime is a double-edged sword. On one hand, I was very happy to see familiar characters and places -- so happy that I got the uncontrollable urge to pick up the game once more and play all the way through it for the fifth time. But on the other hand, this series is so closely based on the game that the story is basically the same. That about killed any sense of suspense or thrill for me because I already knew who Claude and Rena were going to meet, what was going to happen, and so forth.
The art and animation are nicely done. Character designs are beautiful and quite faithful to those you'd find in the game. Alas, Star Ocean EX's ending leaves something else to be desired. It's a big cliffhanger -- Claude realizes his self-worth, and everybody discovers that they still need to defeat some more baddies. The end. What the hell is up with that? I don't know if this is one way of telling me there's going to be a sequel but I was mighty pissed after sitting through all 26
eps and then being given THAT. On a more positive note, I really enjoyed how the characters were portrayed because their individual personalities really shone through in spite of everything. It was fun watching them relate to each other and handle various situations in their own ways.
Star Ocean EX is altogether an above average anime, but to be honest it's really better off as a game. Those who've played Star Ocean: 2nd Story can't help but know what's going to happen next, while those who've never played may find the whole drill of going to towns, recruiting people, etc. a tad tedious. If you like playing through RPGs (like I do) I suggest you play the game instead... I'd only recommend this anime if you like RPGs but don't want to play them.
P.S. Anybody that finds the game should buy it too. It was the 2nd best RPG (next to Final Fantasy 7) released on PlayStation with like 86 (no joke) endings and maybe 60 hrs gameplay.
This show is older than the remake of course, so you have to expect there to be differences in translation (Heraldry instead of Symbolism, town names, ect.)
Character voices are good; if you didn't like Spike Spencer's Claude voice then you should be at ease with this more "surfer dude" sound in the anime. Rena looks so much better here than in the games, and Claude sports his Blue Sphere (the gba sequel) costume.
Two gripes I have with the series that I've seen thus far is the pronunciation of names and animation (or lack of). First, Claude is pronounced "Clewd" and Recis is pronounced "Preh-seas". Second, the animation is pretty amateur in some spots, like when Ronyx talks and his beard gets a little deformed. I'm kinda nitpicky I guess ;P
Overall, it's a fun series; though I've only seen up to volume 2. At episode 4 it really picks up when Celine comes in. The little love triangle between Claude and the two girls is hilarious, and my girlfriend who's not really into anime actually got into it. SO yeha, pick it up (it's cheap too lol)