This week, we are talking about Favorite Science Fiction & Fantasy in Other Media.
It’s the second day of Spring and it’s pouring rain here in Southern California. All I want to do is stay at home and veg. I have a pile of Gunpla that needs to be assembled, a stack of books waiting to be read, a backlog of anime to watch, and Aidios knows what else to do. But hey, gotta make the money, right? 😉
I’ve been reading a good chunk of NA Contemporary lately but Sci-fi/Fantasy still remains one of my favorite genres. Yes, they’re harder and more intimidating to read than fluffy contemporaries but they’re so much fun. It’s the same with my consumption of other media. I love me some fantasy games. While I love the slice of life genre, anime is where fantasy and science fiction are made possible. For someone who grew up on Yuyu Hakusho and Mobile Suit Gundam Wing, can you blame me for being conditioned to love SFF? I’d do the same to my future children, to be honest. Western animated shows be damned lol.
The list that I drafted definitely was over 5… hell, it was over 10! Majority of the anime that I watch may be slice of life but has fantasy elements in it. Take Orange for example. It’s about the day to day lives of six friends then they receive letters from their future selves. Girls und Panzer looks like a cutesy moe show about a tankery school but come on, I just wish a tankery school would exist! Even something as confusing as Glasslip has fantasy elements.
Maybe I’ll do 5 games and 5 anime? Or at least separate them in this list? Let’s see.
VIDEO GAMES (with all of these, I suggest playing them in publication order)
Legend of Heroes franchise.
Specifically Trails of Cold Steel. Before I found about about this wonderful game, Final Fantasy VIII ruled my gaming heart. This took over so fast. I love EVERYTHING about it – the story, the attack system, music… the VOICE ACTORS. It’s both character and story driven. Every single character – playable or not – has a rich backstory. All the other games – Sky, Azure, Cold Steel, etc. – are all connected. It has elements of magic as well as science fiction in Gundam-like machinery and other technologies. The world-building is like no other. It’s such an engaging game series.
The Tales of… series.
Graces f, Symphonia, Xillia, Zesteria, Berseria… don’t ask what they mean because I’m pretty sure it doesn’t really mean anything. But the games, goodness me. Tales of Zesteria even has an anime adaptation that I actually prefer over the game. I love all the characters across all games. Again, as with a lot of RPGs, there is a big element of magic and lore. It’s whimsical, magical, and all around amazing.
Specifically this game. I like P5 as well but I enjoyed every version of P4 from the fighting game to the rhythm game so damn much. I loved the voice acting as well as the sometimes freaky art style. But really, the music… come on. It also deals with rather complicated matters of the self and other people. You go into the “Midnight TV” and there, you encounter your alternate self, your “shadow”. Then you fight your shadow to discover the real you. It’s awesome.
Final Fantasy VIII.
I can’t help it. I still love it. I hope they remaster it so you can skip long ass cut scenes and have much better graphics. And maybe voice acting too? Squall is still one of my fictional boyfriends. This game has my favorite magic systems (and card games) of all time. And the music… I’m still in love with all the songs on every soundtrack CD.
(I could also put Kingdom Hearts but my main pull to that game franchise is the crossover with Final Fantasy VII and VIII. I do like it too but it’s in no way a favorite.)
Mobile Suit Gundam franchise.
I think the above photo is explanation enough. I grew up watching Gundam Wing. I assembled Gunpla in high school. I picked it up again not too long ago when I discovered Iron-blooded Orphans and Build Fighters. I’m obsessed with Bear’gguys. Now, I’m working my way through Gundam 00. It’s your classic mecha anime. I think under this item also comes classic favorites such as Voltes V and Daimos. My parents watched those shows around me therefore, I grew up loving them too.
Technically, it’s also a game. A visual novel. But my introduction to Steins;Gate was through the anime adaptation. It’s more science fiction than fantasy because it deals heavily with time travel. I love it so much that I cosplay Mayuri every Anime Expo. It starts off as a comedy then it gets darker and darker as the series goes on. The 2nd game will also have an anime adaptation and I can’t wait!
Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood.
This won’t be a list of fantasy anime without FMA. Despite the “metal” in the name, this is definitely more fantasy than sci-fi. And while I do mention Brotherhood specifically, do watch the first series before this one. I know it’s long and you’d think it’s repetitive but you’ll definitely thank me later.
Well, I couldn’t do five each but I tried. Of course, there are still more titles but if I mention everything here, we’ll be here forever. Let me know if you want more recommendations – or if you have some for me – and we can talk in the comments!