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Devil Survivor 2: The Animation (anime review)

review by Luther

Title: Devil Survivor 2: The Animation

Devil Survivor 2: The AnimationDirectors: Seiji Kishi

Writer: Makoto Uezu

Studio: Bridge

U. S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks / Section 23

U. S. Release Date: July, 1, 2014

Format: DVD /13 Episodes/ 325 minutes

Genre: Urban Fantasy

Age Rating: TV MA

 

Overall Personal Rating: B+

Synopsis:

When Japan is driven to the brink of despair by mysterious invaders called Septentriones, humanity fights back using Devil Summoners, 13 people of great distinction who have made pacts with daemons and been given the power to fight! This is the story where comrades’ death can be foretold, where mankind has been placed in the harshest of situations, a story of conflict and choices. Will they be able to survive the countdown to Armageddon?! Their choices will decide the future in Devil Survivor 2 THE ANIMATION!

Commentary:

The first thing to note about Devil Survivor 2 is that there is no Devil Survivor 1 anime. Devil Survivor 2 is based off the Nintendo DS game Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor 2, and is a self-contained story that is not a continuation of the first Devil Survivor game. That said, when I started watching Devil Survivor 2: The Animation I wanted to compare it to the game, however games and anime are two very different mediums. In the game, as the player, you have different dialogue choices and gameplay options that affect how the story progresses, compared to the anime which is a set story. So at first my opinion of the anime wasn’t quite as good as it could have been because I preferred game, but when I got adjusted to the anime, I did enjoy it.
Another reason I didn’t like Devil Survivor 2 at first is the main protagonist, Hibiki. Shortly after the anime started, Hibiki became your typical whiny anime protagonist, which is one of my least favorite character archetypes. Fortunately as the anime progressed, Hibiki’s personality evened out, and he became a much more likable character.

In general, I thought that Devil Survivor 2 was a well put together anime. Thirteen episode series can often feel rushed or incomplete, but I think all the time in Devil Survivor 2 was well used and very little of it was wasted. As a result, the story was deep and interesting and despite the fact that there are 13 main characters, most of them felt whole and rounded.

There is one little thing to note about Devil Survivor 2, and that is its packaging. Although packaging isn’t typically noteworthy, I quite like the box art for this anime. The box has a holofoil cover, thus is very shiny, and with its spiral pattern, it’s almost hypnotic. I will admit that due to its shiny nature, reading the words on the box is not easy, but ultimately I found the box to be really cool, and eye-catching.

Overall Grade: B+

Devil Survivor 2: The Animation is a quick and enjoyable watch, with interesting characters and a compelling story. If you have played the Devil Survivor 2 game, then you may not like anime as much, but if you’re unfamiliar with both then I would recommend watching the anime first.

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