Shikigami no Shiro II

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Shikigami no Shiro II is a vertically scrolling shooter released in the arcades, using the Sega NAOMI arcade system board. It was subsequently ported in Japan to the Nintendo GameCube, and then later to Sega Dreamcast, PlayStation 2, Xbox and Windows PCs. The game was also released in the U.S. on the PlayStation 2 by XS Games as Castle Shikigami 2, and in Europe as Castle Shikigami 2: War of the Worlds. XS Games released its prequel as well, under the name of Mobile Light Force 2.

A number of tie-in novels and manga volumes were produced, expanding the story of the game.




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Shadow Hearts

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Shadow Hearts is a console role-playing game developed by Sacnoth and published by Aruze Corp in Japan and in the United States and Europe by Midway in 2001. It is the first official game in the Shadow Hearts series and Koudelka is its prequel. Shadow Hearts follows the adventures of Yuri Hyuga, a Harmonixer guided by a mysterious voice in his head. He finds himself thrown into the conflicts prior to World War I where he must save the girl and the world from destruction.

Released in North America only one week before Square Enix's Final Fantasy X, and unhelped by Midway's nominal marketing campaign, Shadow Hearts initially struggled to gain the attention of gamers. The use of 2D pre-rendered backgrounds rather than a full 3D environment drew criticism as well. The game was praised for its original battle system. Shadow Hearts gained a cult following for its quirky use and misuse of historical facts and situations in a form of secret history.

Shadow Hearts




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Real Bout High School

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Real Bout High School is a six-volume manga written by Reiji Saiga with art by Sora Inoue and adapted into a 13-episode anime series. It is set in a school called Daimon High, where disagreements among the student body are settled by matches called K-Fights. (The "K" stands for kenka, meaning "street fight".)

This is a manga about a school that doesn't break up fights, but rather, they grade them. The manga introduces Ryoko Mitsurugi, Daimon High's Current reigning K-Fight Champion and self described Samurai Girl. It also introduces Shizuma Kusunagi, a traveling Street Fighter with mysterious powers. The Manga while comedic in the beginning becomes more serious as Ryoko and Shizuma find themselves caught up in the machinations of several student councils and a criminal organization with Ryoko teaming up with a band of female fighters named after the historical Shinsengumi.

The events in the anime series take place after those in the manga. (With several events moved.) Ryoko Mitsurugi is the current K-Fight champion, whose skill at Kendo and her love for samurai dramas has led her to be known as the "Samurai Girl". One day, Ryoko finds a strange pendant which transports her to another dimension called Solvania, where she is expected to fight monsters. Which is part of a bigger plot to revive Solvania.

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Serial Experiments Lain

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By sabrebIade
Serial Experiments Lain is an anime series directed by Ryutaro Nakamura, original character design by Yoshitoshi ABe, screenplay written by Chiaki J. Konaka, and produced by Yasuyuki Ueda (credited as production 2nd) for Triangle Staff. It was broadcast on TV Tokyo from July to September 1998. A PlayStation game with the same title was released in November 1998 by Pioneer LDC.

Lain is influenced by philosophical subjects such as reality, identity, and communication. The series focuses on Lain Iwakura, an adolescent girl living in suburban Japan, and her introduction to the Wired, a global communications network similar to the Internet. Lain lives with her middle class family, which consists of her inexpressive older sister Mika, her cold mother, and her computer-obsessed father. The first ripple on the pond of Lain's lonely life appears when she learns that girls from her school have received an e-mail from Chisa Yomoda, a schoolmate who committed suicide. When Lain receives the message at home, Chisa tells her (in real time) that she is not dead, but has just "abandoned the flesh", and has found God in the Wired. From then on, Lain is bound to a quest which will take her ever deeper into both the network and her own thoughts.

The anime series is licensed in North America by Geneon (previously Pioneer Entertainment) on DVD, VHS and LaserDisc. It was also released in Singapore by Odex. The video game, which shares only the themes and protagonist with the series, was never released outside Japan.

The series shows influences from topics such as philosophy, computer history, cyberpunk literature and conspiracy theory, and it was made the subject of several academic articles. English language anime reviewers found it to be "weird" and unusual, but reviews were still generally positive. Producer Ueda said he intended Japanese and American audiences to form conflicting views on the series, but was disappointed in this regard, as the impressions turned out to be similar.



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D.Gray-man

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D.Gray-man is a manga series by Katsura Hoshino. It is a Gothic-fiction manga first serialized in 2004 in Weekly Shōnen Jump (published by Shueisha under their Jump Comics imprint). It is an ongoing series and is currently up to 139 chapters. There is also a novel series called Reverse, authored by Kaya Kizaki, that tells the characters' backgrounds. As of November 6, 2007, VIZ has released the first seven volumes in the United States. The anime began airing on October 3, 2006 in Japan and is still ongoing.

Many characters and their designs were adapted from some of Katsura Hoshino's previous works and drafts, such as Zone, Book-man, and Continue, and her assistants. Earlier titles considered for the manga were Dolls, Chronoa, and Zone.

The story of D.Gray-man takes place on a fictional Earth at the end of the 19th century. The plot centers around Allen Walker, a young British boy who is a member of The Black Order; a secretive organization whose members are known as Exorcists. The Order's primary mission is to stop The Millennium Earl, an ancient demonic sorcerer who intends to 'cleanse' the world by destroying all life on it.

Exorcists are specially chosen humans who are gifted with the ability to control and use Innocence, a divine substance created in ages past to combat the Earl. According to the Order's history, at the end of The Great Flood, 109 fragments of Innocence were scattered around the world. Once an Innocence fragment is matched to its compatible user, it can become a weapon or tool for the user to wield in the battle against the Earl.

Throughout the story, Allen is introduced to more Exorcists, including Yu Kanda, Lenalee Lee, Lavi, Miranda Lotto, and Arystar Krory. Assisting Allen and the Exorcists are a team of scientists and handlers led by Komui Lee, a Supervisor of the Black Order and Lenalee's older brother. Allen's master and mentor is the enigmatic Cross Marian, one of the five Exorcist Generals of the Black Order, who at the beginning of the story has mysteriously disappeared. In the course of completing their missions, Allen and his fellow Exorcists are introduced to the other Generals: Kevin Yeegar, Froi Tiedoll, Cloud Nine, and Winter Sokaro.

The Millennium Earl is aided in his plans by The Noah Clan, humans who are direct descendants of Noah himself. Each member of this clan is gifted with great power and each represent a different 'aspect' of Noah. They are identified by their gray skin and line of cross-shaped markings on their foreheads. As the story progresses, the members of the clan are revealed: Road Kamelot (the Dreams of Noah), Tyki Mikk (the Pleasures of Noah), Jasdero and Debitto - Jasdebi (the Bonds of Noah), Skin Boric (the Wrath of Noah), and Lulubell (the Lust of Noah).

The Earl also utilizes an army of demonic creatures called Akuma to do his bidding. Akuma are created by taking advantage of someone's grief over the death of a loved one. The Earl tricks individuals into bringing their loved one back to life through a skeletal 'doll', only to have that doll kill them and turn them into an Akuma with the soul of the dead loved one trapped inside. Akuma are able to evolve and with each new level grow more intelligent, powerful, and sadistic. Since Akuma can impersonate humans to blend in, Exorcists are routinely assigned to track down and eliminate them.

D. Gray-Man: Season One, Part One


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Countdown

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Ikki Tousen / Battle Vixens, part 2



Seven schools in the district of Kantō are constantly at war with each other, and the students within — both male and female — have become skilled fighters and constantly battle with rival schools. Their lives and fates are guided by strange jewels, called magatama, that contain the spirits and destinies of warriors from the Three Kingdoms period of China, and also change colour according to the ranking of its bearer. The ultimate purpose of each of these high-school fighters, known as tōshi ("fighter"), is to become stronger than all others and ascend to become the eponymous Ikki Tōsen — a relatively obscure yojijukugo. Literally translated, it means "one knight who is the match for a thousand (other knights)" (the character ki, for "knight" does not translate directly, as knights in the Western mold were unknown in Japan, but the sense is the same). The destinies of those who wear the magatama, though, have repeated time and time again for the past eighteen centuries — without fail — and the carnage is immense each time around.

One girl, Hakufu Sonsaku, recently moved to Tokyo and is apparently destined to unite the schools, just as her counterpart united seven countries long ago. It is hard to believe for the other characters just as much as the reader/viewer, as she consistently shows a lack of common sense and intelligence. However, the magatama that her mother Goei passes on (which belonged to Hakufu's late father Sonken; a play on the name of Sun Jian) is rumoured to be infused with the spirit of the legendary warrior Sun Ce.

Hakufu herself knows naught of this, and explanations of what is going on are largely meant for those watching or reading. All she cares about is fighting whomever happens to be up for a rumble. In fact, fighting even excites her—especially scraps where she is heavily outnumbered. This causes incredible embarrassment and frustration to her cousin, a Toushi by the name of Shuyu Koukin with whom she is staying; he always ends up entangled in the situations in which Hakufu finds herself (to the point of being impaled once), and is driven to distraction by the conflicting facts that (a) the two of them are related, (b) she is incredibly attractive, and (c) her clothing inevitably ends up shredded.

Just like all heroes, there are darker facets to Hakufu's ultimate destiny, and as always there is perpetual conflict in those around her to break the chains of their own seemingly predetermined fates, and to make their own lives. The other main characters include the honourable (Taishiji Shigi, Kanu Uncho, Kakoton Genjo), tragic (Ryofu Hosen, Chinkyu Koudai), manipulative and power-crazed (Toutaku Chuei), enigmatic (Saji Genpo), perverted and unhinged (Kannei Koha), and borderline schizophrenic (Ryomo Shimei—her fighting and non-fighting sides are poles apart).



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Ikki Tousen / Battle Vixens

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Ikki Tousen ( literally "a lone rider with the strength to withstand a thousand") or "Bakunyū" Hyper-Battle Ikki Tōsen is a 13 episode anime series loosely based on the manga by Yuji Shiozaki, which is in turn based on the classic Chinese novel Romance of the Three Kingdoms. The series is known for being full of fan service, featuring a very large cast of attractive young girls, who fight in short skirts and dresses, in addition to numerous other ecchi situations.

The TV series ran on AT-X from July 30, 2003 to October 22, 2003, and its license is held by Enoki Films. The whole series has been licensed by Geneon Entertainment (USA) Inc. for the North America market, and is available on four separate DVDs. The manga is released in English by TOKYOPOP under the title Battle Vixens. The official German title is Dragon Girls, while in France it is called Ikkitousen.

As with numerous other Geneon series, the anime is distributed in United Kingdom by MVM Films. But unlike Geneon, MVM seem to have some ties with TOKYOPOP, as their releases use both "Ikki Tousen" and "Battle Vixens" as titles, using the title graphic from TOKYOPOP's manga for the latter of these. The DVD covers are reversible, for those who prefer the original title, and a limited edition of the first DVD came in a box set with the first volume of the manga.

A second season of Ikki Tousen was picked up, titled Ikki Tousen: Dragon Destiny, which began airing in February 2007. An accompanying radio series named Ikki Tousen Dragon Destiny Radio was hosted on Media Factory. A DVD for chapter 0 was released on Comic Market 71 for 1000 yen, featuring an unedited Dragon Destiny promotional video, voice actor interviews, and DVD for Ikki Tousen Dragon Destiny Radio, recently Ikki Tousen: Destiny was licensed by Media Blasters.
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Ikki Tousen: The Complete Series Box Set



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All Purpose Cultural Cat Girl Nuku Nuku

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All Purpose Cultural Cat Girl Nuku Nuku

All Purpose Cultural Cat Girl Nuku Nuku is a six-episode anime OVA created in 1992. It spawned a 14-episode anime TV series remake (of the same name) in 1998, as well as a 12-episode second OVA series All Purpose Cultural Cat Girl Nuku Nuku Dash in that year. They are based on an original short manga by Yuzo Takada. The series also has a manga adaptation.

In the show, genius inventor Kyusaku Natsume transplants the brain of a cat found by his son Ryunosuke on Christmas Eve, into a schoolgirl android that he created and subsequently stole from his former employer, Mishima Heavy Industries (owned by his estranged wife and Ryunosuke's mother, Akiko Natsume). The result, Nuku Nuku (also known as Atsuko Natsume), is a nekomusume.

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