30 Day Anime Challenge – Day 26: Best Anime Fight

This post is part of The 30 Day Anime Challenge Series alongside the Cosmic Anvil Kickstarter campaign. Click here to read the introduction, and click here to check out and support the campaign to help us fund the printing and distribution of our first collected volume of our manga-inspired comic series, Age of Revolution.


[SPOILER ALERT: The results of battles/finales will be discussed in this post!]

Jess Hardcastle Marketing Whizz Kid

My favourite anime fight is without a doubt between Titan Eren and the Female Titan in Attack On Titan. It’s absolutely epic and intense:

Honorable mentions: Edward vs. Father (Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood) Kaneki vs. Jason (Tokyo Ghoul)


Hannah Collins Co-Founder and Artist

I’ve mentioned before that I’m not massively into shonen fighter anime like Dragon Ball and Naruto that specialise in big OTT fights that go on for ages, so my picks for this one are largely motivated by emotional intensity. And in that vein, I find myself really stuck between two particular fight scenes that come right at the end of two of my favourite anime series’, and both happen to be the brainchild of the great Shinichirō Watanabe.

The first scene I have to talk about as my top honourable mention is the finale of Samurai Champloo, in which wandering samurai Jin and Mugen square off against Shogun Kariya who has come to kill them for aiding Fuu in finding her father – a declared traitor by the Japanese Government. Mugen’s flashy breakdance-inspired moves are no match for Kariya’s minimal but effective swings, and soon it comes down to a classic one-on-one show-down between the two most-measured and skilled warriors: Jin and Kariya.

Samurai Champloo Jin vs Kariya

Jin goes up against Kariya.

You know this set-up so well it’s probably a cliche by now, but it’s none-the-less intense when replicated here. It has all the pacing and tension of a cinematic Western quick-on-the-draw fight, climaxing so quickly, you literally have no idea who the victor is at first:

But as brilliant as this fight is, I have to give my actual pick to the finale of Watanabe’s 1990s intergalactic adventure series’ Cowboy Bebop. Just like Samurai Champloo‘s ingenious blend of hip-hop with samurai cinema (‘chanbara‘), Watanabe feeds influences as diverse as film-noir, John Woo, jazz, sci-fi, and cyberpunk into Cowboy Bebop, making it one of the most original, stylish, and influential anime series of all time.

The final fight – as though a precursor to Samurai Champloo – is also a classic stand-off between our rogue hero Spike Spiegel and his friend-turned-enemy Vicious. At the top of the Red Dragon Syndicate skyscraper, the pair slug it out in a quick flurry of swords and guns, dancing in and out of the shadows. Both are furious, desperate, and resolved to end their feud once and for all – you can see it in their screwed-up expressions and hear it in their grunts of exertion. Spike is eventually victorious – but at a great cost.

Cowboy Bebop Spike and Vicious confront each other for the final time

Spike and Vicious confront each other for the final time.

As he slowly limps out of the building, the shadows are dispelled by a bath of golden light pouring over him, and as his body crumples to the ground, the camera slowly zooms out until his body is almost too small to see, lifting up out of the city to the sky. This sudden contrast in light and tone somehow lifts the tension of the brutal fight into a peaceful ambiguity, and Yoko Kanno’s ‘Blue’ playing over the credits just completes it perfectly. We’re not completely sure if Spike is dead, but either way – his psychological turmoil that he has wrestles with throughout the series seems to have been resolved. I still haven’t gotten over the goosebumps it gave me years after first watching it!

 Honourable mentions: Kanda Yuu vs. Skin Bolic (D.Gray-Man), Edward Elric vs. Greed (Full Metal Alchemist & Brotherhood), Roy Mustang vs. Lust (Full Metal Alchemist & Brotherhood) Levi vs. Female Titan (Attack on Titan), Kirito & Asuna vs. Level Boss (first team-up) (Sword Art Online), Sebsatian Michaelis vs. Grell Sutcliffe (Black Butler), Ichigo vs. Grimmjow (Bleach), Cloud vs. Septhorith (Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children)


Huw Williams CO-Founder and Writer

I’ve talked a lot about Dragon Ball and One Piece already over this blog series, so I want to talk about an epic fight that isn’t apart of the gallery of epic DBZ and OP fights for this one.

The fight I want to talk about is Cloud vs. Sephiroth in Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children. Advent Children might not be a traditional anime, but I still regard it as an anime none-the-less.

Slice and Dice.

Slice and Dice.

This fight scene has everything you want from an epic anime battle: Huge swords, high jumps, crashing buildings, and glorious hair. The action is fast and fluid, and almost a little too fast for the eye providing a god-like quality to the combatants. My favourite part of the fight is when Sephiroth and Cloud are falling with the debris of a crumbling building that Sephiroth cut up, slicing chunks of the building to either dodge or attack and colliding mid-air, sword against sword, all happening while Sephiroth’s theme plays. Cloud’s final move is awesome as well, ripping Sephiroth to shreds. So cool.

Here is the full fight:


Written by The Cosmic Anvil Team.

Check out our own Welsh-manga (or ‘Wanga’) series, AGE OF REVOLUTION on our official site and Comixology! And if you want to join the fight to get the AGE OF REVOLUTION Volume printed check out our Kickstarter page

Kickstarter age of revolution volume one cosmic anvil new reward tiers added

Kickstarter new reward tier £15 pledge cosmic anvil

kickstarter age of revolution cosmic anvil new reward tiers pledge comic book comic strip art commission

30 Day Anime Challenge – Day 23: Favourite Attack Someone Used in an Anime

This post is part of The 30 Day Anime Challenge Series alongside the Cosmic Anvil Kickstarter campaign. Click here to read the introduction, and click here to check out and support the campaign to help us fund the printing and distribution of our first collected volume of our manga-inspired comic series, Age of Revolution.


[SPOILER ALERT: There will be spoilers about the outcomes of certain battles in this post!]

Jess Hardcastle Marketing Whizz Kid

Some of these topics are really tough to name just one particular anime for! This was another one of those topics for me. So much too choose from, but I’m going to go with the attack Kaneki uses to defeat Jason at the end of Tokyo Ghoul. After being completely broken, Kaneki turns the fight around and Jason gets a taste of his own brutality. I’ve also chosen this one because all of the Kagune attacks are brilliant, beautiful, and terrifying all at the same time.

[Warning: The video below is the uncensored version!]


Hannah Collins Co-Founder and Artist

There are some big gaps in my fighting anime knowledge, so as much as I know that iconic attacks from Gurren Lagan, Beserk, and Fist of the North Star should probably be mentioned here, I unfortunately have yet to watch them! Massive, OTT displays of power and prowess can be impressive, but my choice for this post is an attack that is neither big, bloody, or even physical. It is instead one that I think is one of the most creative and ingenious I’ve ever seen in anime: Writing a name in the Death Note from Death Note.

30 day anime challenge cosmic anvil death note

The Death Note

Dropped by a Death God named Ryuk, the Death Note has the power to kill simply by the writer describing a person’s name, the cause of death, it’s consequences, and picturing their victim in their head as they write. How can any other attack even compare to the nightmarish, omnipotent power of that? No wonder it turns it’s user – the conniving and sociopathic Light Yagami – from a bored, straight-A school boy into a supreme megalomaniac. (And a supreme dick.)

But, the one thing it certainly does have in common with most other anime attacks is ridiculous melodrama:

Honourable mentions: Titan transformation (Attack on Titan), Miranda Lotto’s ‘Time Record’ (D.Gray-Man), Maka Albarn’s “Witch Hunter” (Soul Eater), Allen Walker’s “Crown Clown” (D.Gray-Man), Captain Byakuya Kuchiki’s “Senbonzakura Kageyoshi” (Bleach)


Huw Williams CO-Founder and Writer

First you have to ask yourself, what do I want my attack to do? You want it to destroy your enemies, and you want it done fast. Normally in these situations I would go for a Dragon Ball move, but they take up so much time to power up!

One of the fastest and hardest-hitting heroes that I know in anime, is Monkey D. Luffy from One Piece. I remember watching One Piece for the first time (unfortunately it was the awful 4Kids dub), and being amazed at how strong Luffy was, but also how fast and agile he was. I was also impressed how imaginative Oda is with Luffy’s powers. He might just be made of rubber, but damn he can utilise it. My favourite attack by Luffy is one that I feel truly utilises all of his ‘Rubber Man’ powers.

Luffy can inflate his body by puncturing his bones and blowing into them, this is called Gear 3rd. His over-sized limbs possess huge strength, mostly used to smash bad guys, breaking their bones into a million pieces.

Luffy busting out a fortress with Gear 3rd.

Luffy busting out a fortress with Gear 3rd.

Luffy also learns how to control Haki. Haki, literally meaning ‘Will,’ is a power that anyone can control as long as they have strong enough willpower at their disposal. One of the abilities you can master with your Haki is called, Adamant Haki. This gives you the ability to strengthen any part of your body, or any weapon you hold with potentially limitless strength and durability.

Luffy using his Adamant Haki.

Luffy using his Adamant Haki.

Now I have explained the two elements of my favourite attack, I will now show and tell. My favourite attack is the Gommu Gommu no Elephant Gatling Gun. To pull this move off, Luffy inflates his bones to provide him with humongous fists, then using his Adamant Haki to harden them, he essentially turns his fists into ‘Battleship Sized Cannon Balls’. Finally with his elastic band speed he launches his fists into a flurry of punches. This move is fast and powerful, it can destroy buildings in seconds.

To watch the destruction, check out this clip (it takes him to warm up, as it’s his first time using the move):


 

Written by The Cosmic Anvil Team.

Check out our own Welsh-manga (or ‘Wanga’) series, AGE OF REVOLUTION on our official site and Comixology! And if you want to join the fight to get the AGE OF REVOLUTION Volume printed check out our Kickstarter page

Kickstarter age of revolution volume one cosmic anvil new reward tiers added

Kickstarter new reward tier £15 pledge cosmic anvil

kickstarter age of revolution cosmic anvil new reward tiers pledge comic book comic strip art commission

30 Day Anime Challenge – Day 17: Favourite Supporting Male Anime Character

This post is part of The 30 Day Anime Challenge Series alongside the Cosmic Anvil Kickstarter campaign. Click here to read the introduction, and click here to check out and support the campaign to help us fund the printing and distribution of our first collected volume of our manga-inspired comic series, Age of Revolution.


Jess Hardcastle Marketing Whizz Kid

My favourite supporting male anime character is without a doubt Captain Levi Ackerman from Attack On Titan. You only have to watch this clip to see how awesome he is:

Honorable mentions: Shogo Makishima (Psycho Pass), Roy Mustang (Full Metal Alchemist & Brotherhood) and Daru (Steins Gate)


Hannah Collins Co-Founder and Artist

I had a real tough time with this one as I often love the supporting characters even more than the main characters in some anime. I’ve noticed as well that a lot of the supporting characters I love are kiiiiiiind of either psychopaths or douchebags. Hmm.

So with this in mind, my favourite supporting character pick is unsurprisingly my favourite loveable douchebag of all anime: Kanda Yuu from D.Gray-Man.

Kanda Yuu D.gray-Man

Kanda Yuu, D.Gray-Man

The online D.Gray-Man Encyclopaedia describes Kanda as “a handsome young Japanese man usually found in a foul mood,” and I think this summary is pretty much nails Kanda. Raised by the European branch of the ‘Black Order’ (Exorcist soldiers) to fight against The Earl (aka the Devil), Kanda is a ‘Second Exorcist’ who wields a supernatural blade named ‘Mugen’ and also possesses enhanced artificial regeneration abilities that enable him to take massive amounts of damage in battle and recover fairly quickly.

Personality-wise, Kanda is grumpy, uncooperative, and snappy – your typical ‘lone-wolf’ stereotype. Imagine a prettier, taller, and less hairy version of Wolverine and you’re pretty much there, as this clip demonstrates:

However, main character Allen Walker’s unrelenting positivity and determination to befriend Kanda result in some pretty funny squabbles between the mismatched pair, with Kanda bestowing him with the nickname ‘beansprout’ due to Allen’s weediness at the start of the story.

Kanda Yuu and Allen Walker

Kanda gets wound up by Allen a lot.

However, as Allen goes from strength to strength through the show, Kanda’s respect also grows for him, and he proves himself again and again to be fiercely loyal and honourable – even at the risk of his own life. The more recent chapters of the on-again, off-again manga have also revealed the tragic truth of Kanda’s origins – which only made my love for him as a character even stronger.

Kanda Yuu secret past

Kanda’s secret past is revealed.

Plus, just like Wolverine, he’s ridiculously unstoppable in battle:

Honourable mentions: Lavi (D.Gray-Man), Calcifer (Howl’s Moving Castle), Grell Sutcliffe (Black Butler), Dr. Stein (Soul Eater), Bakura (Yu-Gi-Oh!), Shuu Tsukiyama (Tokyo Ghoul), Levi Ackerman (Attack on Titan).


Huw Williams CO-Founder and Writer

For my favourite supporting male character, I have to return to Dragon Ball.

Now, I know what you’re thinking, and no -I’m not talking about Vegeta. I’m going to talk about someone with an even more interesting story arc, and that’s my man Piccolo.

My Namekian.

Piccolo, Dragon Ball

Piccolo is a champ with an odd origin story. Long ago, a Namekian landed on Earth. This Namekian would one day visit the Gaurdian of Earth and wish to take his place. However, the Gaurdian of Earth at the time told this Namekian that he had too much evil within his heart to protect the world. So, this Namekian split his mind, body, and soul in two parts and became two different Namekians: one being Kami the Guardian of Earth in Dragon Ball and Dragon Ball Z; the other becoming The Demon King Piccolo.

King Piccolo

King Piccolo

Now, King Piccolo is our Piccolo’s father. King Piccolo terrorised the world for years until a martial arts master sealed him away in a jar like a Genie. Decades later, this Piccolo is set free and is on the hunt for the Dragon Balls to restore his youth. Unfortunately he does so, and it’s up to Goku and the gang to stop him. Goku does so by punching a hole right through his chest (so bad ass), but with his last breath King Piccolo spawns an offspring, and sends him to a forest to hatch and grow.

Piccolo Vs. Goku

Piccolo Vs. Goku

Piccolo is born with his fathers’ hatred and evil, and dedicates his life to killing Goku and taking over the world. Piccolo faces Goku in the final of the World Martial Arts Tournament and it’s this fight that brings Goku’s story in Dragon Ball to an end, to be concluded in Dragon Ball Z. However, Dragon Ball Z is also where Piccolo’s story continues, and this is where it gets really interesting.

Piccolo training Gohan.

Piccolo training Gohan.

In Dragon Ball Z, Goku dies, but don’t worry – he doesn’t stay that way for long. In the meantime however, Piccolo takes Goku’s son, Gohan, away to train him for the Saiyan’s arrival. It is at this point that Piccolo’s character changes for the better. Piccolo and Gohan become close friends as Gohan becomes older, and it’s this friendship that starts to turn Piccolo into one of the greatest fighters for good.

Piccolo and Kami fuse.

Piccolo and Kami fuse.

Piccolo is a funny character is great as well as he’s such a grumpy guy. In Dragon Ball you have a lot of happy characters and a few angsty characters, but Piccolo I feel is the only grumpy character there, which makes him stand out, and that’s why this image of him hiding at a dinner party is amazing:

lol

Lol

He is the most powerful Namekian, and for a short time was one of the most powerful fighters in the world, being even more powerful that Super Saiyan Goku at one point. His fight with Android 17 is something that everyone should watch, as it truly shows what he can do. Later he kicks back and becomes more of a teacher, and teaches Trunks and Goten how to fuse to become Gotenks.

But for me, it’s his relationships that make him a great character. His friendship with Gohan will always be the best thing ever in anything, but Piccolo and Goku become close friends and sort of colleagues in martial arts. He gets pushed around by Chi Chi and Bulma (just like everyone else); him and Vegeta have a silent understanding; and Piccolo also forms tight friendships with the other Z Fighters – friendships you would think to be impossible after watching the original Dragon Ball.

He still tries to be the big scary guy though, which makes these GIFs that much more hilarious:

Yes, there is an episode when Piccolo and Goku learn to drive.

Yes, there is an episode when Piccolo and Goku learn to drive.

IN DUH CLUB!

IN DA CLUB.

He’s also named after a type of Flute:

Is she, crying?

Is she… crying?


Written by The Cosmic Anvil Team.

Check out our own Welsh-manga (or ‘Wanga’) series, AGE OF REVOLUTION on our official site and Comixology! And if you want to join the fight to get the AGE OF REVOLUTION Volume printed check out our Kickstarter page!

Kickstarter age of revolution volume one cosmic anvil new reward tiers added

Kickstarter new reward tier £15 pledge cosmic anvil

kickstarter age of revolution cosmic anvil new reward tiers pledge comic book comic strip art commission

 

30 Day Anime Challenge – Day 10: Favourite Fighter Anime

This post is part of The 30 Day Anime Challenge Series alongside the Cosmic Anvil Kickstarter campaign. Click here to read the introduction, and click here to check out and support the campaign to help us fund the printing and distribution of our first collected volume of our manga-inspired comic series, Age of Revolution.


Jess Hardcastle Marketing Whizz Kid

Okay, so I’m sure this isn’t technically classed as a fighter anime but it does have some really epic fight scenes in it. Plus, I’ve not really seen many fighter anime – I’ve still only watched a couple of episodes of One Piece (such a N00b!) My pick for my favourite fighter anime is Deadman Wonderland.

maxresdefault

Deadman Wonderland

In Deadman Wonderland, not only are the Deadmen using their own blood to fight with they also are made to fight each other and the loser is dissected for body parts to experiment on… Ugh.

This means the fights are pretty NSFW, such as this epic one between Ganta and Senji:


Hannah Collins Co-Founder and Artist

I’m more into magical and supernatural fighting in anime and I’m not sure those would qualify as ‘fighter’ anime in the traditional sense. However, I also love anime involving old-school Samurai action, and therefore my pick for my favourite fighter anime is Samurai Champloo.

Samurai Champloo jin mugen manga anime 30 day anime challenge cosmic anvil

Mugen and Jin, Samurai Champloo

Set in Edo-era Japan, the story follows Mugen – a rebellious, wandering swordsman, Jin – a stoic, honourable ronin – and Fuu – a plucky young waitress who enlists the pair of them to accompany on her quest to find “the samurai who smells of sunflowers.”

This rag-tag team journey their way through the Japanese countryside and villages, getting into trouble in brothels, pissing off the local government, and having some pretty amazingly animated fights:

As creator Shinichirō Watanabe‘s first series following Cowboy Bebop, it is certainly of the same high standard and similarly critically acclaimed, and I would highly recommend it to anyone who is a fan of sword fighting or martial arts. I’m always more impressed by skill by power when it comes to fight scenes – quick and masterful swings of the sword or fist are more satisfying to watch than massive explosions of power/energy for me like in most Shonen shows. Samurai Champloo has plenty of this on display, and moreover, cleverly inflects it’s hip-hop flavoured soundtrack into the action by throwing breakdancing moves into Mugen’s fighting style.

Samurai Champloo Megun showing off his breakdancing skills

Mugen showing off his breakdancing skills.

The contrast between Mugen and Jin’s personalities is also echoed through their preferred fighting styles. Whereas Mugen dances round and shows off, Jin is quick, precise, and respectful of his opponents. I won’t spoil what happens in the final fight, but let’s just say it’s a classic Samurai stand-off.

Jin Hair down final episode Samurai Champloo

Jin finally let’s his hair down.

Honourable mentions: Bleach, Soul Eater, Sword Art Online, D.Gray-Man, Claymore.


Huw Williams CO-Founder and Writer

Obviously, I’m going to talk about Dragon Ball with this one. Firstly, I would like to clarify that I am talking about Dragon Ball not Dragon Ball Z. The franchise is amazing, and DBZ does take it to the next level, but I feel Dragon Ball is better when it comes to martial arts and fighting as it revolves more around Goku training for the martial arts tournament, rather than space adventures, serial killer androids, and mindless demonic creatures made of chewing gum.

Dragon Ball.

Dragon Ball.

Hands down, the Dragon Ball franchise is one of the most, if not the most, successful manga/anime franchises of all time. So I’m sure as hell making it my number one fighting anime. For starters, it’s literally all about fighting as the whole story revolves around Goku, who from an early age, falls in love with training and martial arts and begens his journey to becoming the world’s greatest fighter.

Bros

Goku & Krillin: Bros.

What makes Dragon Ball the best fighter is not just it’s commercial success, but at it’s core it’s a pure martial arts story. Very early on, Goku leans that he is not the most powerful in the world as at his first Martial Arts Tournament Goku is defeated in the finals by his then master, Master Roshi who is under the guise of Jackie Chung. Roshi then confesses that he entered the Martial Arts tournament to teach Goku and Krillin this lesson, because if they live their lives believing that they are already at the top, they will either become sloppy or arrogant. This lesson is probably the most important lesson in Dragon Ball, as it creates one of the most definable character traits in Goku – the need and the want to train to be the best, but it also secures Dragon Ball as a fighting anime by definition.

Training.

Goku training.

Not only does it have the spirit of a good fighter, but it looks amazing. The fights in Dragon Ball are some the best in anime. Incredibly fast and insanely strong, these fights are always a thrill to watch. I know DBZ takes it to the level of God standard, but I feel like in doing this it loses it’s martial arts roots. Dragon Ball manages to provide heart-pounding action without blowing the world up every season. Dragon Ball is also the anime that has the most iconic fighting move of all time: The Kamehameha.

KAMEHAMEHA!

KAMEHAMEHA!

The moves used in Dragon Ball are crazy. Not only are there energy blasts, but martial artists have trained their bodies to do everything from multiply, grow extra limbs, regenerate, fly, read minds, hypnotise, trap demons (or Namekians) in jars… the list goes on. Also, the humor used in Dragon Ball is amazing; preventing it from becoming too serious or reduced down to tough guys just beating each other up. It also has some of the best cast of characters who are all completely lovable – even the bad guys…Who aren’t always that bad, in the end.


Written by The Cosmic Anvil Team.

Check out our own Welsh-manga (or ‘Wanga’) series, AGE OF REVOLUTION on our official site and Comixology! And if you want to join the fight to get the AGE OF REVOLUTION Volume printed check out our Kickstarter page

Kickstarter age of revolution volume one cosmic anvil new reward tiers added

Kickstarter new reward tier £15 pledge cosmic anvil

kickstarter age of revolution cosmic anvil new reward tiers pledge comic book comic strip art commission