Editorial

10 Things that need to happen in RWBY Volume 7


All right, it’s time to take a look at some things that need to happen in RWBY Volume 7. It is quickly approaching and I feel like we need to be ready for it. As a result I have outlined the 10 things that absolutely must happen in order to solidify Volume 7 as one of the greats. I mean…it’s RWBY so it’ll be great either way but I want to see it reach the level of volume 3. Volume 6 set up a lot of hype plot lines which could and should have a big payoff here. While they won’t wrap everything up here since we’ll probably be stuck in Atlas for a while, a lot of big events should happen.

1. Cinder and Neo need to meet up with Team RWBY

No, we don’t want this whole volume to be a set up for their confrontation in Volume 8 as I’ve heard some discuss. I want Cinder and Neo to arrive in Atlas and fight the team in this volume. It’s fine if it takes half the season to get there, but I want a serious fight with Team RWBY and these two. At this point Cinder’s abilities are so great that she could probably take on the main 4 by herself while Neo deals with Qrow and Jaune’s team. They could even switch. It’s hard to say how formidable Neo would be against the heroes on her own since we haven’t seen much of her since volume 3 and the heroes have also gotten way stronger since the old days. That actually connects to another point later on. Regardless, this is a big fight that needs to happen. Whether they pick off some of the heroes one at a time or go for the full combo at once this will be the highlight of volume 7.

2. Winter’s Return

This is Atlas and Winter has been teased at for a very long time. What better way to make her return than in Volume 7? It already seems like this volume is going to have a ton of character development for Weiss and that makes sense. The last volume got a lot of closure for Blake and Yang as they dealt with Adam and Ruby always gets a lot of development about the Silver Eyes. This is Weiss’ time to shine and I also wouldn’t mind an upgrade to her current dust abilities. Atlas is her home turf and that need to be taken advantage of. I don’t mind if Winter and the father don’t show up but I’m sure they will.

3. Full Team RWBY fight

This could happen at the same time as the first option. I want a real fight with the complete RWBY team all at once. Can you believe that the only time we’ve seen them fight as a team against a capable foe was with Torchwick back in Volume 2? That’s absolutely crazy and we gotta change that. Fighting Grimm and random giant robots just doesn’t work for me. They can fight against Cinder or Salem, or someone else. The important factor is that this opponent needs to actually be a threat so we can see the team unleash some cool combo attacks on him as they go in for the win. I’d also expect this fight to get the full budget that it deserves because it’s such a big deal. In general Volume 6 brought the budget back way up so I’m not really concerned about that.

4. Ruby needs to learn to control her Silver Eyes

A lot of people point out and rightfully so that Ruby should have been learning how to control her Silver Eyes by now. They are an incredible asset against the Grimm and other enemies. Qrow at least knows about them so giving Ruby a heads up years ago would have been nice. Now that we have the Grimm Reaper there is no reason why we can’t have Ruby just unleash on all her foes. I feel like she has gotten a lot closer to mastering these abilities so completing that character arc in volume 7 would be ideal. It does mean that the Grimm may not be a threat anymore, but perhaps Salem will have a way to power them up.

5. Update on the White Fang

Adam is gone, but that doesn’t mean that the White Fang is no more. He was already split from them early on in volume 6 after murdering a few members and going rogue. I assume that someone else is now at the helm of this organization. While it will likely go to Blake in the long run I want some closure for them. Having the White Fang as an ally would be interesting or even better as a wild card that still messes with both sides. They don’t need a lot of screen time or anything. I’d be satisfied with even a quick mention or a small role where they are acknowledged.

6. I want to see some Atlas huntsmen/huntresses

It’s time to see what other regions have for defense. Beyond the cadets we don’t really know very many Huntsmen. Salem did murder most of them by now, but I imagine that Atlas would have a reasonable supply of them since they are so closed off from the rest of the world. I’m not talking about expendables like the guys who showed up in Volume 6, but real ones. As a last resort I could settle for the in training ones that we saw in the tournament but I’d like to see more. One theory from the trailer that came out is Atlas will have their military take down the team. I’d rather RWBY does not lose to guys with guns, it should be a full squad of Huntsmen and even then it should be a close fight. Ironwood is portrayed as a smart commander so I like to think that he has a good army ready to fight Salem with.

7. Beringels need to appear

Quite a few of the post credit scenes from previous RWBY volumes either did not happen, may have happened but we don’t know since no aftermath showed up, or had to re-happen in volume. I want the post credits scene from 6 to matter so these guy should appear. They are the new kind of Grimm we saw Salem make at the very end which have wings. They seem like they should end up being a very big threat so I look forward to seeing them give the heroes a tough time. They may even be Salem’s escort since Hazel hinted that she would be stepping up to the plate. So long as they appear then we’re good.

8. Raven needs to return

Volume 5 ended with Raven seemingly returning home to talk with Yang’s Dad. We haven’t seen any of this yet so I want them to either appear in the flashback or in the present to help out the team. Raven may not be a hero yet, but she is learning that Salem’s route won’t end well for her. Raven does still have incredible powers of her own so striking now makes sense. I doubt there is any member of Salem’s team who can handle her one on one. She needs to show up in Atlas and cause chaos or make a move on the villains. It’s the best way to protect her tribe and we really shouldn’t go 2 full volumes without seeing her.

9. Power Levels explained

The show isn’t big on explaining power levels, but it’s time we get something. Right now there are too many variables because of how much time has elapsed. We have no idea just how much stronger Ruby and friends are than they were in the first volume. Part of the problem here is that they were all extremely overpowered in the first 3 volumes and then got nerfed straight down for volumes 4 and 5. Volume 6 seems to have bumped them up again, but with all of the back and forth we’re more confused than ever. One example is Yang vs Mercury. Mercury was way above her level in volume 3 to the point where he was able to control the fight, but now Yang is hinted to be even stronger than the Grimm Reaper. Yang also assisted in beating Adam when she lost in one hit last time. Could Yang beat Mercury now? That’s just one question out of many. I think Qrow could give some exposition on where the team stands right now since he is the most experienced and would be the right person to offer some guidance and a proper assessment.

10. Salem needs to fight

This is the final but most important one. Salem’s been the big bad threat over the horizon since Volume 3. The problem is that she hasn’t done anything in the present since then. Personally I feel like Cinder or Raven could beat her at the moment. Salem’s advantage seems to be her regeneration since destroying her causes Salem to reconstitute like a sludge monster. It’s likely an instant rebirth so putting her down will be difficult. I want to see her in action. Part of me thinks her first victim would be either Raven or Cinder as she decides to just absorb a Maiden. While I’d be sad to see either one go, it would be the perfect way to show Salem’s strength. It would solidify her as a threat and I believe this shouldn’t wait until Volume 8. We need to see her power this season.

So those are the 10 things that I believe needs to happen in Volume 7. Let me know what you would like to see in this upcoming volume. It’s only around 2 weeks away now so it’ll be upon us before you know it. I’ve definitely got high hopes for it even if Adam won’t be showing up this time.

Editorial

3 Characters who are stuck in bad titles

I think it’s time we look at a rather tragic situation for a character. One of the saddest things is when you’ve got an amazing character who is stuck in a bad anime, manga, or film. It’s like having a player who is stuck on a bad sports team or a great video game locked behind a console nobody bought. There are likely many times this has happened, but in general there aren’t too many that would immediately come to mind. For the definition of “bad” in this context I’m talking about series that I’ve given a 4 or lower.

1. Gray Fullbuster

Who better to start this off than a character from Fairy Tail? Fairy Tail is one of those series that should have been nothing short of amazing. The art is absolutely top notch and the fights are great. It has some of the most epic scenes out there and the franchise has really done a good job of spreading out over the years with various spinoffs and prequels. Alas, a character cannot hold an entire franchise up on his own. Gray is awesome, but you can’t fully appreciate how many great scenes he has because then you’d have to watch Fairy Tail.

He’s got a very tragic backstory involving an ice demon and has done a great job of trying to get past that. He’s always grown up being a noble main character and is willing to throw his life away multiple times in the series to stop the threat on his own. He’s got an ice spell that sacrifices his life in order to stop an enemy. This attack may have even stopped Zeref if Natsu hadn’t stepped in. Even his comic relief subplot of always losing his shirt may be a subconscious method of trying to remember the good ole days with Lyon and his master.

Gray functions as the rival in Fairy Tail as well as a secondary main character of sorts. He’s managed to keep up with Natsu throughout the series to the point where they are at similar levels of power even by the end. He saved Natsu when up against Mad Geer as well in what was probably his most impressive scene. I would also rank that as one of the all time best “Someone steps in to save the main character” scenes in a series. The one liner about reminding Natsu to keep track of his scarf made the whole thing even more epic.

Aside from being an excellent fighter Gray is also a smart character. He’s the first one to figure out that something is up during Fairy Tail Gaiden’s mystery story with Gajeel and in general he simply doesn’t fall for tricks. He doesn’t have the weakness of being motion sick like the Dragon Slayers and this makes him a well rounded fighter. Even his romance plot is better than 90% of other romance plots. I’m still not a fan of most romance in general and I’ll probably do an editorial someday about what makes for a good romance, but his is actually pretty sound.

In short, Gray’s just an incredible character and it’s a shame that he couldn’t have been in a better series. This guy should be spoken about in the same sentence as Sasuke or Vegeta but he’ll always be relegated to B status at best simply because he’s stuck here. At least he’s a great silver lining for if you ever check out Fairy Tail, but it’s not like I could actually recommend the series just because of Gray.

2. Eren Jeager

Attack on Titan is a very popular series, but one that I ultimately had to give a thumbs down. It goes too far in being ultra violent and making everyone out to be so unlikable and evil that there is nobody to root for by the end. Still, that doesn’t stop one character from making a name for himself and ultimately overcoming all of this. That would be Eren, the main character. He’s an excellent lead who really hits the right balance of being impulsive and calculating. His whole life was turned upside down when his town was attacked by titans and he’s sworn to take revenge against them his whole life. Once he becomes old enough Eren gains the abilities of a Titan Shifter and begins his revenge. He starts out as a pure hearted hero who eventually goes down a gray road to the point where he isn’t much better than some of the villains. Eren’s always been about revenge so it’s not like things have really changed all that much for him, but revenge seems to be his only motivation now.

Part of what makes Eren great is his quick actions. He doesn’t buy into the various justifications that the villains give even when the others characters begin to crack. One good example of this is when the Colossal and Armored Titans begin to explain why they are going around murdering everyone. Eren doesn’t believe a word of it and calls them out for just being mass murderers. Eren says it how it is and doesn’t worry about appearances.

In combat Eren is quick to adapt and learns how to fight the Armored Titan mid-fight. He also did well against the Female Titan. He makes up for his lack of experience with pure fighting technique. He didn’t start out as an ace fighter or anything like that, but didn’t stop until this became the case. That’s why he’s such a great character. We actually see Eren training with the others and his gradual improvement over the series. It’s really something to see how far he has gone from the original days. The character is almost unrecognizable upon first glance, but on closer inspection you can see the same fire in his eyes.

He’s easily the highlight of the series and whenever he appears you know something cool is going to happen. I think part of what makes him work so well is that he actually has the power to back up his plans. He’s not going to just go along with the corrupt government any longer than he has to. Once the time skip happens then all bets are off and we see Eren truly unchained.

3. Kirito

Let’s be honest here, Kirito is one of the main reasons why I made this editorial. He’s one of the greatest characters of all time and yet he is stuck in Sword Art Online. SAO has a cool premise and the first arc of the anime is one of the most complete sagas out there. Alas, after that things went downhill a bit with almost every arc having something wrong with it. Kirito shines as a beacon of hope in even the worst of arcs, but imagine what he could really do in a better series?

Kirito started out as your average teen who just loved video games a lot. Once he gets stuck in the world of Sword Art he does his best to get back while keeping as many people alive as possible. Kirito prefers being a solo act and that’s how he is for the first two arcs of the series. Eventually he becomes more of a team player in Gun Gale and that leads up to Alicization where he has a tremendous amount of character development. In that series he is now portrayed as the mature adult who has been through a thing or two. He teaches Eugeo how to be a good fighter as well as how to be a good person. He instills a lot of great life lessons like fighting for your goal and not letting it turn into hate or a vendetta against the villains.

Kirito is a master swordsman in all combat styles, but he’s also a super genius and picks up on things very quickly. What never wavers is his unshakable confidence. He’ll jump in to help anyone at any time while always keeping a cool head. Kirito is the kind of guy that you always want to have in your corner. He’ll figure out a way to win and if it doesn’t exist yet then he’ll invent a way for it to work. He’s always been a very outside the box kind of fellow at it is. There’s no shortage of amazing Kirito scenes in the Sword Art Online series. You always know that no matter what happens he will be around to help. One such scene is when he takes on an entire platoon by himself. I can’t really picture anyone else in the series being able to do something like that.

Kirito really embodies what it is to be a perfect character. He’s a really nice guy who will always do his best to help his friends get through a tough spot. He’s got an awesome uniform and is always up for a fight. As long as you try your best you should always be able to get through a situation and Kirito shows how dedication really does make a difference.

So, those are 3 characters who are quite awesome, but just so happen to be stuck in titles that will never really be able to hit the big time for me. It’s too bad, but at least those titles do have a cool character to help them. It’s way better to even just have one good character then to be a title with no solid characters to back it up. These 3 are all stars who would be top 5 in any title and that’s definitely an impressive feat.

Editorial

6 Reasons why Adam is the best RWBY character


It’s time to take a look at a very controversial character in RWBY. This editorial covers events from the first 6 volumes so if you have not finished 6 yet you’ll want to hold off on this one. There are a lot of feelings on this character in part due to how his personality drastically shifted from his initial appearances to the later ones. There are a ton of theory videos out there with in and out of universe reasons for it. What I’m hear to say is that Adam is actually still the best RWBY character of them all. The series has a ton of really standout characters like Yang, Neo, Cinder, Mercury, and Torchwick but Adam stands above them all. Why is that? Well, I’ve got a few reasons below.

1. Adam was the first real threat of the series

From his first appearance in the Black trailer Adam was solidified as a very powerful fighter. Not only was he able to take down the spider robot in a single blow, but the strike was at a level that we didn’t see any other character come close to matching within the first 2 volumes of the series. Even to this day it’s probably one of the more impressive strikes in the series. He had a very skillful showing in the trailer when he took out the guards and was also a capable leader. You could easily see how this guy was going to be heavily involved in what was to come. Strength isn’t the only factor in how good a character is of course, but it was a tremendous first impression.

2. Adam was a third party thrown into the mix

The series is mainly about the battle between the Huntsmen/Huntresses and the Grimm led by Salem. This is the main plot which is still going on to this day. Adam and his White Fang do not belong to either side. He’s fighting to free the Faunus from oppression. Adam can’t have the Grimm win because they would destroy all of the Faunus, but if the Hunters win then they will keep enslaving and oppressing the Faunus. His only recourse is to claim dominion over the world and to scare those in power into backing off. The White Fang led a peaceful approach for a while with no results so eventually Sienna Kahn took over and got some reasonable results. Between her and Adam the White Fang actually did gain a lot of ground for the Faunus. True, they were seen as a terrorist organization, but the Faunus could no longer be bullied away. Adam kept on with this approach to the point where his actions got too extreme even for Sienna though.

A third party character like this is always amazing and few stories are able to keep it up for long which is a shame. It’s a tough plotline to do because you have to be keeping track of 3 different groups for a while, but the payoff is massive when it works. That’s why it’s a shame that Adam was destroyed at the end of the volume by Yang and Blake. It’s a fitting way to go out so I won’t deny that it was executed very well, but I feel like this should have happened in volume 8 or 9. Writing him out this soon was a missed opportunity. I would have liked to have seen him take down one of Salem’s generals first and a major player on the hero team as well. (Sun or Neptune perhaps) Ultimately Adam didn’t leave as much of an impact on the group as I would have liked.

3. Adam’s ideology is tragically sound but clouded by his own thirst for revenge

Adam is a villain. Lets not lose sight of that. No matter how well intended your goals might be or how sad your origin story is, once you turn to a life of crime you can’t claim to be a hero nor should others represent you as such. That being said, Adam’s fundamental goal on a large scale is a good one. He wants to free the Faunus from discrimination and oppression. Just take that goal to mind and it’s a sound one. It goes without saying that he will have to break laws and disrupt the peace to do so because currently it is 100% legal in the world of Remnant. If he lobbies to stop it then political corruption will put a stop to that. However, where Adam goes too far is when he decides to take a more direct “eye for an eye” approach. By volume 3 he is openly murdering civilians in the city and by volume 5 he no longer seems to care about his goal as he is also willing to murder other Faunus just for honor. In volume 6 he murders them for no real reason. He really went off the deep end although I would argue that’s a writing decision that never made sense.

Nonetheless, you can see how Adam is in the wrong. It was always a lose-lose situation for him though. It was inevitable that he would have to murder some heroes once he decided to stick up for the Faunus. Best case scenario would be if he could pull off a Magneto stalemate where he claims some land or a private island for the Faunus and then blocks anyone from entering. He would only engage if they bring the fight to him. It’s a noble sentiment and if you can pull it off then that’s great. It’s very hard though and since you’re on the defensive it is very likely that the “heroes” will storm your base one day and massacre everyone. If you’re not the one leading the attack then you’ve given away the initiative.

So what should Adam have done? Well, to give the Faunus a fighting chance he does need land and the real question is how could he get it? The world of Remnant is already fairly packed so one way is to free all currently trapped Faunus by breaking into jails and destroying them. This would lead to the government sending hunters out who would have to be eliminated as well. Ideally by this point the government would give them a new island and while there would be skirmishes that would end things. It’s still a bit of a dream scenario though. Realistically nothing short of a civil war would really change things and I do think that’s what it would come down to. Make no mistake, tons of people would die here, but it would be in the context of war and Adam would do his best not to go after others needlessly.

Adam is a great leader and I think he would be able to pull this off. He is powerful enough to get the job done. It would have been interesting to see Adam do something like this. He wouldn’t be played off as a hero from the other characters’ point of view, but he wouldn’t be downright despicable or evil either. Just think about Star Wars, Bleach, or even Robin Hood. From the context of the group in power, the one attacking is the evil villain even if they’re just doing this to stop the corruption. As the saying goes, “Everyone is the main character of their story” Adam would absolutely be viewed as a murderous villain from the eyes of the government even if his cause is just. Remnant’s government is inherently evil and discriminates against the Faunus. This is shown clearly in volume 1 as Velvet is getting bullied in the lunch room and none of the heroes in training stand up to defend her. Even Blake stands down as she doesn’t want to stick out which shows a big difference from Adam who would have jumped across the table and murdered the bullies. Again, he is quite extreme so that’s not the right way to break things up either, but at least he would have helped her. This means that the heroes wouldn’t listen to his side of the story. Ruby probably would, but ultimately her bosses would force the issue and Adam would have to be terminated. Make no mistake, Adam would definitely be destroyed if he was caught.

4. Adam is determined

One trait I always like in a character is determination. I like a character who doesn’t get distracted and has a very fixed mind on their objective to the point of obsession. All Adam wants is freedom for the Faunus and he trains diligently to that goal. The Adam character short was amazing here as we see his progression through the ranks. Initially he does try to clear his missions without hurting anyone and gradually the incidents pile up until he no longer values human life. He’s just seen too much and that’s what begins to completely turn him. Even when he’s offered a shortcut to his goal like when Cinder offered an alliance, he refused since it would mean that Faunus would be hurt. He was later forced to submit when Cinder got maiden level abilities because the alternative is that a lot of his allies would have died. Contrary to popular belief I don’t think he gave up because he thinks he would have lost there. I think it’s because the collateral damage would have destroyed a lot of his allies and his goal had always been about taking on the risks himself rather than putting others in danger. A battle of that level would be hard to win without this happening. While Adam was severely nerfed later on I would argue that he was around Maiden level here. Being able to take down Yang in a single hit with no effort is incredibly impressive. Yang was the strongest of the students and Ruby was holding her own against base Cinder so this would put Adam at the very least on teacher level (Crow, Winter) and while we don’t know how much farther up Maiden level is, it puts Adam in the conversation.

5. Adam’s got style

While this is the least important reason, it is worth pointing out that Adam’s just a very “cool” character. His design is fantastic and the voice actor does a great job. While I only see mockery of his performance and the character online, I think he nails every scene he is in. Every time Adam appears I lean forward in my seat because he’s about to do something cool. His ability to absorb hits and re-direct them is very handy. The guy’s a leader, he’s very intelligent, and he can fight well. Adam’s the real deal and the complete package. In a one on one fight I would bet on him every time. I’m still hoping for the off chance that he will appear in volume 7 since we didn’t actually see the body. There’s almost no chance he will be coming back, but I can certainly hope.

6. Adam’s inconsistent final appearances don’t negate the intro ones

This is a point that many may not agree with, but I’ve always felt this way. If a character is great and always has been great until a moment later on when they act completely out of character then I question the writing more than the character. I’m going to give you some examples here. This first one is basically clickbait.

There’s obviously more to this context than Superman simply selling Lois out to get away. He’s got a plan and a scene like this can actually be clever if handled well. It’s a case of a character seemingly being written out of character, but not necessarily.

Then you’ve got this Captain America example shown above which is an example of absolutely terrible writing with a character doing a full 180. There are reality warping/mind tricks at play here, but this is actually happening. It’s not a dream nor is it a fantasy and this is something the character would never do. I’m against mind control completely since I don’t think any character should be able to fall for it. Maybe it’s because hypnosis is so fake in real life most of the time with hacks discrediting the whole thing, but if a character has strong will power then this won’t work so easily.

The final example with Sonic coming up is the worst kind of out of character moment.

No, this isn’t a parody image. It’s an actual scene that happened with an infamous writer who really didn’t like Tails. Sonic is edgy and likes to take shots at characters, but he wouldn’t go that far with Tails. This is simply a character who has been not handled well in this issue. You can point to decades of other Sonic issues to see why this doesn’t make sense. That’s the case I make for Adam. Now there are a few reasonable counterpoints to this such as Adam not appearing in nearly as many past scenes compared to Sonic so there’s less to pull from. There have also been less writing changed since the creator Monty wasn’t as hands on with the writing even when he was around. This is quite possibly a direction that Adam would have gone in either way.

What I’m saying here is that the writers just missed the point of Adam’s character. They ultimately decided that we shouldn’t take his actions earlier seriously and he was always using that as a front. He doesn’t care for the Faunus rights 100% since Blake ended up taking over his thoughts. Whether it was a gradual decline or not, by the end of the series he is fighting for himself now. He just follows Blake everywhere but regardless it would mean his resolve early on wasn’t as strong as he thought it was. I think it’s too steep of a change for him. In the final volumes (Mainly 5 and 6) he has now become obsessed with Blake. Interestingly this is also when he became considerably weaker to the point where Blake was able to down him with a single punch. That is still the worst moment of RWBY history by the way and I doubt it’ll ever be surpassed. Volume 6 tried to make him more of a serious threat again but even then he lost a bit too easily. There’s still no way Blake and Yang would be enough to stop him at their present level. It would take all of Team RWBY to stop him or at least 3/4 of the members. I am glad that they retracted part of the nerf though.

Before Adam’s character missed the boat with how the personality shifted, look at his actions early on. Blake left him a while back and in the first 3 volumes you wouldn’t think that he cared much. There’s no mention about this on his part and he’s still continuing with his plans as normal. Even when he invaded Beacon in volume 3 he doesn’t go after her and it’s just coincidence that she finds him. This makes sense because his first priority is saving the Faunus. Yeah, he definitely took the Blake situation pretty personally which makes sense and I’m sure eventually he would try to find her, but he has priorities. She no longer agreed with him and he accepted that as best he could. From the flashbacks of the two he did seem to care for her but his mission took precedence and since she didn’t like his extreme methods they parted. I don’t know where the notion of Adam being obsessed with Blake or manipulating her came into being because it really did not seem like that was the case. Even when she talks about him early on or when they meet you never get that impression. If anything he seemed like a stand up guy who’s on the wrong side. This may be gone later on, but at his core this is why Adam really succeeded as a character to me.


There’s some overlap here with qualities that I look for in a villain. I’ll be posting an editorial about that someday because it’s a fun topic to tackle. There are definitely aspects of a character that are important to me and if you have enough of them then you’re going to be a great character. Character rankings also tend to change as you watch a show. Piccolo used to be my favorite DBZ character and now he doesn’t rank at all. Gaara was my favorite Naruto character and now it’s Sasuke. Typically my first impression character doesn’t last, but once I finish the show then it sticks. Mercury was my favorite character in RWBY for a little while, but now that Adam is on top I don’t see him changing. Salem does have some similarities in the sense that her goals were also pretty sound, but that’s an editorial for another day. This is my case for why Adam is the best. Case Closed.

Editorial

Why Shadow’s introduction is still the greatest cutscene of all time


I’ve played over 900 games in my lifetime and I’ve cleared over 750 of them. There are a ton of great titles with amazing cutscenes so how can you ever go about picking the best one? Well, this actually wasn’t as tough as you might have expected it to be. Some true highlights over the years have been cutscenes like Sonic saving Nintendo from Tabuu, Custom Robo’s legendary opening cutscene, Sonic Riders had an awesome intro, etc. There have been a lot of amazing cutscenes, but none have quite hit home the way that Shadow’s intro did. I’ve seen this cutscene countless times over the years and it only gets better and better with each additional watch. Here’s 5 reasons why made such an impact. I’ve also linked the cutscene below.

Click here to see the cutscene on Youtube.

1. This moment changed the Sonic series forever.

Adventure 2 Battle is widely known as the greatest Sonic game of all time and it’s hard to dispute that. I would even consider it to be a top 5 game although it does depend on if we roll the Super Smash Bros titles into one. Sonic DX started what is now known as the golden era of Sonic which basically ended with Sonic 2006 leading the series to a bright conclusion. Then we got the reboot era where the plots took 100 steps back and the series has never really gone back to the heights it used to be in. Sonic Forces was an admirable attempt and one of the best Sonic games in a very long time, but we need a proper all star like this game.

Shadow’s mere appearance brought in a lot of drama and excitement. Finally Sonic would need to fight someone who was just as fast, if not faster than himself. Shadow had a lot of amazing abilities at his disposal like Chaos Control and also had a lot of mystery in his origin. The characters even mistook him for Sonic so it’s even possible that he’s the same color and the cutscenes just made him black so we could distinguish the characters when they met up. The stakes had never been this real before.

2. The Music

Shadow’s theme “Throw It All Away” perfectly fits the tone here and makes the cutscene 100x more epic. Seeing Sonic piece together what just happened while Shadow makes a grand speech about the chaos emeralds is excellent. The music also feels like something out of DBZ or a futuristic type game and that worked well due to Adventure 2 Battle still being the fanciest Sonic game to date. I still say that this game has the best look and feel to it in the whole franchise. I could go on and on about how great the game is, but I suppose we should focus on the cutscene.

3. Shadow outspeeds Sonic here

This is a big one because Sonic is used to being the fastest guy alive. Unlike the Flash who gets outsped in every season of his own show, Sonic never really has that issue. If you count toon force and gameplay mechanics Eggman gets away at times but there’s never been a character who was truly faster than him until now with the exception of Metal Sonic who effectively is a robotic version of the character. This cemented Shadow as quite the threat and this also took Sonic out of the driver’s seat. For the first time he was facing an enemy that he possibly couldn’t defeat on his own.

4. The return of the Chaos Emeralds

After Sonic DX I’m sure that people weren’t expecting these emeralds to appear so soon. They were really a big deal back in the day as you can tell from Sonic’s reaction. These things have a lot of destructive power and in the hands of a villain like Shadow it could spell doom for the entire city and even the world. It’s Sonic’s version of the Dragon Balls and they have always helped escalate the game to new heights. Their mere appearance also hinted that we would see Super Sonic again which is always a treat.

5. Sonic rushes in

This one is very important because it’s one of the reasons why I’m a huge Sonic fan. He is shocked at first, but quickly gathers his bearings and approaches Shadow. At this point a lot of main characters would have just been too shocked to do anything or they would have wasted a lot of time talking. Sonic knows that Shadow is a criminal who is basically holding a nuke and runs in. He’s also able to react to Shadow’s Chaos Control which is super impressive since such a teleport is basically instant. I dare say that this scene already shows that Sonic was FTL by this point. Then of course the army shows up and while Sonic could escape he basically just lets them take him by this point so as not to cause further damage. Sonic’s just one of the ultimate heroes and still one of the best video game characters of all time. His character is really shown quite well throughout this era as well as in the Wii storybook games.

There you have it, this cutscene is just amazing. It may only be around 1 minute, but it manages to fit in so much content here. This was the breakout moment for the Sonic series. As I mentioned, DX did start this path but this exact moment is when Sonic jumped from being a great franchise to being one of the all time best. If you don’t count crossover series like Super Smash, then I definitely do put it as my favorite video game franchise of all time. Of course I may still prefer some individual games from other series like DBZ and Madden, but for the whole package Sonic definitely wins here. It manages to keep a great line of hype and excitement along with great gameplay and a solid story. It started out as a title like Mario, Crash, or Kirby, or Spyro but then it took a more serious turn here and became a title that you could talk about in the same breath as something like Street Fighter or Final Fantasy. Adventure 2 Battle’s overall plot still holds up to this day with spectacular writing and a lot of twists. The entire gaming industry would not be the same without this game and that’s why when they finally announce the real Adventure 3 (So not Unleashed) then I’ll be ready!

Editorial

8 necessary traits to being a good Hero?

It’s time to take a look at what it means to be a good main character. There are a lot of qualities that you need to have to be a quality lead and it’s a very broad subject. There’s no way I can tackle literally every part of this equation, but I will at least get to the important parts. A hero stops the villains. That’s the basic definition of it at least, but there’s a whole lot more to it than that. You’ve got to have a strong fortitude, the will to defend others and fighting battles that are not winnable. You gotta protect your family and friends even if it means going against the law. The characters I use as examples below aren’t necessarily great heroes, but they have shown at least that one of the 8 major traits that all big heroes need. So without further adieu lets talk about this.

Disclaimer: The images/gifs below include scenes from Naruto (The flashback saga between the classic series/Shippuden), RWBY (The volume 6 Adam short), Yu Yu Hakusho (The second showdown with Sensui), Sword Art Online (The Sleeping Knights arc), Super Smash Bros Brawl (Final cutscene), Fairy Tail (The Sabretooth arc), Seraph of the End (The first meetup with the leads), Bleach (Soul Society climax), My Hero Academy (The introduction to the Mafia arc), and Dragon Ball Z (The Buu Arc). So if you haven’t read/watched those series and are concerned for spoilers then you may want to look away. Mainly the scenes here are bits without context and I wouldn’t consider them all that spoilery, but I know what a spoiler is depends on the individual. Some prefer to be 100% surprised so even seeing 2 characters together is a bit of a spoiler since now you know that they cross paths. For others it has to be something bigger, but nonetheless you at least know the various series involved now.

1 A Hero can’t be bound to the law.

You can’t always follow the protocols. Follow your heart, not the law. Of course this is in the context that the heroes will still follow the just ones of course. You have to keep in mind that half of the time the villains are the ones running these worlds. If you blindly follow the laws then you’ll end up allowing villains to get away with everything. If you’re a hero who is a part of a larger organization then you have to watch out as the group will often try to stifle you. They need to wait for proof and such, which as an organizational policy isn’t necessarily a bad thing. However, this means that innocents will still be suffering during the wait. That’s when a real hero steps up.

A good example of a hero moving in on his own is Natsu from Fairy Tail. Here’s the context behind the clip here. There’s a guild known as Sabertooth which is a group that carries out missions. The group has a very strict policy where if you lose you’re publicly shamed and then thrown out of the guild. Natsu finds out about this and decides to break in and take out the leader. Attacking another guild isn’t something you’re supposed to do and especially attacking on your own is typically a suicide mission. The Fairy Tail group is a lot more reasonable than other guilds so I actually think they may have supported Natsu here, but at the same time I’m glad Natsu didn’t wait to go check with everyone. He went right to the group and if he wasn’t interrupted I really think he would have taken down the whole group there. Natsu wasn’t playing around.

2. Heroes can’t worry about villainous mind games.

There are a lot of villains who start talking about their grand ambitions, how they’re actually the good guys and all of that nonsense. It tends to work on some characters who start weakening in their resolve against the villains. Some heroes go all the way in turning to the dark side while others simply become paralyzed with fear. True heroes really don’t care though and that’s part of what makes them a good hero. A good hero doesn’t need to worry about if what they’re doing is the best course of action or not. They’ve already thought through their plan earlier so at this point they just need to go in and get stuff done. In Yu Yu Hakusho a big part of the Sensui arc was the villain trying to convince the heroes that humans are even worse than demons. It works on some of the characters, but Yusuke never buys into this from the start. It’s not that he’s disregarding Sensui’s points, but at the end of the day the villain’s trying to destroy the planet so no justification will save him from Yusuke’s beat down. A hero can’t waver in their convictions.

3. Heroes save their family and friends no matter what


This one seems to be really hard for a lot of heroes. They become bound by their own feelings and the law rather than standing by their allies. Kakashi’s line in the image shown above perfectly describes the true heroes from the ones who neglect their title. Time and time again we see a hero get framed and his or her supposed best friends and comrades are quick to turn. One of the worst examples of this was in the 6th Naruto movie where almost the whole leaf village decided to take him down as well as allowing Kakashi to sacrifice himself. None of those are real heroes. Even if nobody else believes in your friends you’ve got to save them. Even if it’s against the law or you’re outnumbered you’ve gotta at least try to save those closest to you. Mikaela’s whole character is built around how he’s sworn to always protect Yu. It hasn’t been easy, but in the clip below he finally locates him and gains a surge of strength to save him. Not everyone here may be enemies, but they’re all pawns so Mikaela has to save Yu on his own.

4. Heroes don’t back down


This is a big one because depending on the circumstances it’s easy to lose all respect for a character. An infamous example of this is Deku from one of the latest arcs as he allows a girl to be kidnapped and tortured in part because he was scared of the villain, but also because he was told to let it happen. That’s falling for 2 taboos in a row there. It’s very hard if not impossible to ever recover from that. As a hero you can’t back down. If something bad is happening in front of you then you’ve got to act. This includes a scenario where you don’t have a chance of winning and have to try anyway. Even if you lose at least you’ll have bought some time or at least weakened the villain. Even if you’ll ultimately be defeated without dealing damage, it’s better to stand and fight than flee. The villains win automatically when you don’t even try. Kirito is one of those fighters who is always quick to jump into a fight even if it may not be a winnable one. He certainly won’t back down and in this clip Asuna and the others showed similar resolve. You’ve just got to stand your ground.

5. Heroes don’t make sacrifices

One of the worst things a hero can do is allow someone to be sacrificed. I don’t care if it’s the other character’s plan, if the character begs the hero to let him die, etc. If the hero allows this then that’s a problem. There’s always another way and in the cases where there isn’t, well I guess everyone’s gonna have to die then. Better to go down as a team than to let someone make the sacrifice. Endgame did a good job with that with the Black Widow and Hawkeye dynamic since both of them did their best to stop the other. You have to do everything you can to stop the other person even if it means taking the plunge yourself. I’m not against the hero doing a self sacrifice move, but you can’t let anyone else do it. The point of being a hero is taking the shots so someone else doesn’t have to. Is it selfish? Yes, but sometimes being a hero is about being selfish. That may be a topic for another day. Here Ichigo just prevented Rukia from dying even though at this point she didn’t want to get anyone in trouble. He just decided to save her anyway and that’s always the right call.

6. Heroes act rather than wait

This is a big one. You can have the loftiest ideals in the world, but if you’re not acting upon them then you’re doing more harm than good. I’ve seen a lot of villains created in part because the heroes are ineffective. Take a look at this clip. The White Fang is at this moment a fairly peaceful group, but they are being stopped by bandits (or countrymen as the world of Remnant definitely did not like the Faunus) and the leader just halfheartedly tells them to stop. Of course they continue to shoot because it’s a very passive attempt at best. You have to actually stop them. In this case, Adam was right to neutralize the bunch. He didn’t murder any until the end, but he made sure that they wouldn’t hurt anyone else. Now, for the last person? I don’t see anything wrong in that instance as he had to make a snap decision to save his comrades. Could he have just sliced the gun? Sure, but that’s way easier said than done and he only had an instant. Again, a hero can’t hesitate as more lives would be lost. You just have to act and live with the consequences there.

7. Heroes can’t be pawns

There’s a little overlap here with the bullet about not always following the law. Sometimes heroes allow themselves to be pawns by either acting in a situation where they’re just going off of someone’s word or they’re doing something they know is wrong because their boss told them to do so. One instance of this was when Captain Adam chose to help Cadmus rather than the League. He stood by as they tortured a League member and were planning to murder several others. You just can’t call yourself a hero at that point. At least if you don’t realize that you’re a pawn you can use that as a defense but if you willingly jump into the role then it’s all over. Vegeta allowed himself to be mind controlled in order to access his next form and fight Goku, but he never let Babidi give him any real orders. At the end of the day Vegeta still does whatever he wants and that’s exactly the kind of hero you want. If the orders you’re given don’t make sense then you shouldn’t follow them.

8. Heroes inspire confidence

This last one is a bit obvious, but worth mentioning. A Hero should inspire confidence. His or her mere presence should turn a situation around and bring some hope into a situation that was filled with despair. Originally I chose a Justice League clip with Superman here, but the gif website was having some issues and I couldn’t load the video so I quickly had to go with another option. Sonic’s another hero who inspires confidence and the scene of him saving everyone in Super Smash Bros Brawl was perfect. Not only did it finally solidify him as the strongest character in the game, but it was just the perfect entrance. Sonic’s appearance automatically changes the whole situation and a good hero should have that kind of impact. A hero doesn’t have to be massively powerful like Sonic or Superman, but a hero should have enough experience and tools in his kit to always be able to give the good guys some valuable help. If a hero shows up and everyone stays gloomy or throws some insults around then you’ve done something wrong.

So, these are my 8 bullet points on what makes a good hero. There are more things of course, but I feel like these are the main 8 without starting to repeat myself. Eventually a lot of the other points would overlap. Look, if you’ve got a brave hero who fights to save everyone then that’s a great character. A hero should always strive to save everyone even if it isn’t practical. The more cynical heroes who think you have to let everyone die are the ones who are really missing out on the big picture here. At that point you may be doing the right thing, but you don’t have the right hero mentality. So, what kind of hero do you get when you merge all of these aspects? Well, you get one of the ultimate anime characters of legend, a hero through and through.

Editorial

All MCU Intro Scenes From Worst To Best


It’s been a long time since this post has been in the works. I first got the idea for it 11 months ago but then just kept putting it off as I was busy with other stuff. Well, Endgame is only about a week away so it’s time to finally go through with this ranking list. I’ll be ranking all of the intro scenes for the numerous MCU films which lead up to Endgame. Choosing what exactly is the intro scene gets tricky as some have multiple scenes before the opening credits, others have none. Other scenes are extremely short while others are pretty long. In the end the criteria I used here was a “scene” is described as whatever happens when the film first opens without a noticeable shift in location. If it’s a continuous scene that goes across locations that’s different like the Avengers car chase scene with Loki. It’s a continuous shot. In contrast, Guardians 2 has a scene shift before the opening credits, but there is a time skip plus there’s no way to connect the two scenes. I can see some of the scenes selected being a bit debatable, but after watching all the film intros again this seemed like the best way to go about it.

I guess one thing you may wonder is what should an opening scene be like? As you read through the rankings you’ll get a pretty clear visual on what I like to see. Basically, an intro should immediately get you hyped for what you’re about to watch. It should be something that’s either fun or exciting. You can also have a bit of a dark opening setting up the villains. If handled right there are many ways you can go about it. What you don’t want to do is start the film off with a boring scene, an emotional one (No time to care about the characters yet) or any kind of animal violence. There are many more things to consider of course, but that’s a basic guide. Now it’s time for the rankings!

Guardians of the Galaxy: This is definitely the worst of the MCU intros. The scene basically covers the death of Starlord’s Mom and then ends with him abruptly getting kidnapped by aliens. There’s a lot wrong with using this scene to start off the film. It doesn’t get you engaged in the story. The Mom has only been introduced for seconds so she has had no development and while tragic, it doesn’t set the proper tone for the film. There’s nothing particularly entertaining about this scene and is one that you’ll never feel a need to re-watch. It does succinctly cover his origin story, but there should have been a scene before this one. Maybe flip scene 2 (Star Lord in a cave) with 1 and you’ve got a better transition.

Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 2: Wow, two Guardians in a row? It’s pretty close between this one and the first to be honest. This one goes for a romance intro as we see when Starlord’s parents first meet up and Starlord starts to be created. The film does set up his whole growing into the earth gimmick early on, but there’s really nothing to this scene. It ages even worse once you know the twist about the Dad. This is another intro scene that really doesn’t hype you up at all. Of course, we do get one more scene in the film before the credits hit so the director probably realized that as well, but I can only judge the first scene. It’s just very weak and was a red flag for the film we were about to experience.

Iron-Man 3: This scene takes place back when Tony was antagonistic so it can be more tragic than entertaining. One guy named Killmonger really needs to talk to someone about his research so Stark tricks him into going to the roof. The poor guy waits alone there while Tony gets his game on. Tony then runs off and in the blink of an eye he managed to make several enemies and threaten the world. This one’s a bit over the top with how obnoxious all of the characters are. While parts of the intro are entertaining, it’s really more mean spirited than anything else. None of the characters are all that pleasant. Even Happy is in a rebellious mood here.

Captain America: Civil War: This one’s surprisingly low on the list right? It’s not a terrible intro, we’re re-introduced to how Bucky was brainwashed. We see the group use their book of codes on him and he is then sent on the mission where he murders Iron-Man’s parents. It’s pretty quick and to the point, but of course it’s a very one sided affair from the start. I do think a genius like Howard should have had some kind of security in his vehicle considering what he was carrying. It’s definitely one of the darker starts to an MCU film. I’m still no Winter Soldier fan though. We’re slowly getting to the better MCU openings as this is a step up from Guardians.

Iron Man: Now we’re at the original MCU film that started them all. The film starts off with Tony at the dessert being escorted somewhere by the military. Unfortunately terrorists show up and blow the cars away. He is then captured and that’s how the scene ends. There’s definitely a very sudden contrast between his happy banter with the driver and crew before they’re attacked. It shows how quickly a good time can suddenly turn into something pretty nefarious. It’s an effective scene that does quickly let you know that things are gonna be rough for Tony. It’s a very realistic scene with effects that hold up quite well. If anything’s weak about the scene it’s just that none of the characters are particularly likable at this point.

Captain America: This film starts off near the arctic as some scavengers are looking for something. It’s dark out, but they are determined and see Captain America’s shield. At long last they have uncovered the super soldier. The scene ends at that point as we cut to the past. It’s a pretty direct intro that builds up some hype for uncovering Cap. Yeah, it can be a bit annoying to know that we won’t be back to the present until the end but I suppose that’s unavoidable. It’s a pretty low-key intro, but one that holds up.

Thor: In this film we start off with Jane and her father following a tornado. It’s really going to help Jane’s data project, but unfortunately they run over someone. Turns out that it’s Thor and now they’re worried that he might be hurt. That’s where the scene ends before we get a flashback to explain what happened. It’s a decent scene as the tornado does add some tension. Tornado watching definitely isn’t for me though. Definitely seems way too dangerous and risky if you ask me. For a film opening it does deliver on some hype but I do think it would have been more fun to have started with the big fight against the ice beings.

Black Panther: This film starts off with an introduction as to what Wakanda is. It then transitions into a scene of T’Challa’s father destroying a traitor and flying back to Wakanda. It helps us get the villain’s motivation as well as a very quick introduction on Wakanda. This is one of those films where it’s a little debatable on if it’s the same scene, but as the narration really isn’t a scene and there isn’t really a big transition I thought it was fair to meld the two. It was a nice twist to have an informant on the inside and the scene does show why you don’t want to mess with Wakanda. It also did produce one of the MCU’s better villains so that’s always good.

The Incredible Hulk: While I’m still not this film’s biggest fan, I will admit that the intro was pretty ambitious and certainly was handled very well. It basically recaps the Hulk origin without having us go through the whole thing yet again. The music is intense and it sets the tone pretty well. We do get a surprisingly violent visual when Hulk breaks into the base the first time, but for the most part the whole thing moves very quickly. It’s got a very Jason Bourne type feel to it that works very well. I’d like this futuristic angle to show up in more MCU titles.

Antman and The Wasp: This one starts off with an early mission of Wasp and Ant-Man trying to stop a rocket. Unfortunately Pym’s belt stops working so she has to be the one to make the sacrifice play. She was long thought to be dead, but now Pym thinks there is a way to save her. It’s a pretty solid intro and continues off of the premise from the first one. Now that Pym knows it’s possible to return from that micro dimension, he’s ready with a plan. It was also cool seeing Janet in costume as a hero. The suits really looked good and you get a nostalgic feeling from seeing the old team in action.

Iron Man 2: This one’s pretty solid in a similar way to the Hulk intro. It starts out by showing us Ironman’s big speech at the end of the first film. This time we’re seeing it from the eyes of Whiplash and his father though. The father ends up dying and Whiplash blames Tony so he starts planning on how he can get revenge. The intro is basically a long montage scene of him preparing his armaments and getting ready to attack. I always like these kind of villain montage credits like how Black Manta had a good one in Aquaman. It shows a level of determination on the villain’s part and one that will certainly serve him well going forward.

Captain America: Winter Soldier: This intro is pretty low key, but fun nonetheless. It starts out with Captain America running around on the track and mocking Falcon. They have some banter in good fun, but at the end of the day Cap is a super soldier so a race between these two is hardly fair. Falcon gives him some media suggestions and then Cap rides off with Black Widow to get ready for a mission. It’s not an opening that is trying to be “hype” so the alternative is to be fun. I think it does a good job. The “On your left” moment definitely became a quality meme and he’s just a fun character. This also introduces the friendly rivalry between Falcon and Cap pretty well.

Captain Marvel: This is another interesting case as there is technically a scene shift here. It starts out with Marvel waking up on a planet with an injury and then she’s back in the present getting ready to spar. I consider the scene to be over after the sparring session as I don’t think the scene is even a minute long otherwise. The sparring session is pretty fun and the intro does throw in some suspense. It’s a good way to start off the movie and the music for the fight was solid as well. It’s nothing spectacular, but I think it’s a fundamentally good opening. There’s really nothing wrong with it and I always do love a good fight.

Spider-Man Homecoming: This one starts off with Vulture getting his guys ready for one of the biggest cleanup jobs they’ve ever had. It takes place almost right after the Avengers and naturally there’s a lot of debris everywhere. Unfortunately in the interest of public safety Ironman has hired his own crew to clean up so Vulture and his guys are kicked out. Most of them were already desperate for cash so now they’re either doomed or will have to go for a life of crime. It sets Vulture up as a pretty sympathetic villain and I do think he did a good job in punching one of the contractors out. He’s a villain that you like almost right away and when an intro does that within 1-2 minutes you know you’ve got a solid one.

Antman: This scene ranks pretty high as it gives us what may be the best portrayal of Hank Pym since United They Stand. The fact that he immediately slammed the guy who brought up Janet was pretty solid. The scene itself doesn’t sound too dynamic on paper as it’s basically just Pym finding out that Stark stole his formula and telling them not to try anything like that again. The slam is just what pushed the scene over since it showed Pym’s resolve. There are times where it’s not good to just sit there and listen to the villains. Pym definitely wasn’t putting up with any of that.

Thor: The Dark World: This one opens up with a pretty big war scene with Asgard and the armies of Malekith. War scenes tend to bore me, but this one spiced things up by adding a lot of fun energy effects for both sides. I think that was the difference here and made it stand out more than normal. It follows the intro scene guidelines to the letter. Starting off with an action scene like this is the perfect way to strap everyone into their seats and prepare you for a fun time.

The Avengers: Now we’ve got the classic Avengers film. This one starts with the tesseract finally appearing to be active and Loki uses it as a portal to enter Earth. From there he quickly takes down SHIELD and escapes as Fury prepares to assemble the team. It’s a great way to start up the film. We are introduced to the big villain right away and it also makes the whole thing feel even more like a crossover from the get go. It’s just hard to top this one and that’s why only a few have. It’s not a big over the top fight or anything like that, but the scene has a lot of energy. It’s filmed well and the music also helps.

Avengers Age of Ultron: This one starts off with the Avengers raiding an enemy base and obtaining the cosmic scepter. They also have a quick skirmish with Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver which was fun. It’s currently the only time we’ve ever gotten to see the full team on a normal mission in the film continuity. It’ll likely be the last time as well so that’s why it was a lot of fun. It’s not a fight that they ever had a chance of losing, but it was certainly entertaining nonetheless. I’d certainly be down with a prequel that takes place around this time so we could have more moments with the whole team. The 3 Avenger titles so far have all certainly had great openings.

Dr. Strange: This one starts off with a villain group infiltrating a monastery and murdering some monks before getting some kind of book. That’s when the Ancient One shows up and we get our first big fight scene. It’s a pretty fun fight since she’s using magic to manipulate the environment and as a result everyone has to fight while jumping around and everything. This is always a great way to start off a film and it also introduced the Ancient One well. It makes sense to show us an action scene with her since the rest of the film is mainly with Dr. Strange.

Avengers: Infinity War: This is definitely an opening that I’ve seen numerous times and certainly ages well. Not only does it kick off immediately where Ragnarok ended (Which was a great idea) but it really shows how fierce Thanos is. The opening is basically the entire scene of Thanos showing up and then ending when he blows up the ship. It gave us a lot of memorable lines and seeing Hulk take the full Mcnuggets combo from Thanos was great. There are some logic questions you’ll have from that scene since it doesn’t make quite as much sense when you think about it, but it doesn’t take away from the fact that it’s a very powerful scene. This is a villain introduction scene handled to perfection. Really, Infinity War as a whole is basically perfect and really hard to top. There’s almost no way Endgame even stands a chance, but if it can match this then the MCU saga really will be complete.

Thor: Ragnarok: It was a close call between this one and Infinity War, but I have to give Ragnarok the slight edge. It begins with Thor seemingly being captured by Surtur and then he fights his way out as he stops Ragnarok before the event can even begin. The fight is great here and it’s probably the best Thor had looked up to this point. He got to show strategy, speed, and strength. It’s his ideal moment and Surtur’s homeland made for a pretty cool backdrop. Then you’ve got the music that plays during the scene and you’ve really got a masterpiece. It’ll be tough for any opening to beat this one’s.

So, that’s my MCU intro scenes list! Marvel’s definitely got a lot of films here and with the MCU going as strong as ever I’m sure there’ll be enough new scenes for another list in the distant future. While I don’t have any other lists in my immediate plans, future editorials will talk about what it means to be a good hero and likewise, what makes a good villain. Editorials are fun to write although they do take more time than the normal posts for sure. If you’ve seen all the MCU films, would you agree with the list or is yours completely different? Sound off in the comments and remember that intros are one of the most important parts of the film. Arguably the only parts that are anywhere near as important are the ending and the general climax of a title.

Editorial

Ranking all of the RWBY lyrical songs


All right guys, it’s time to look at one of my most ambitious articles yet! In this one I rank all of the lyrical RWBY songs from worst to best. It took quite a long time to listen to them all and start the ranks but it was certainly worth it. Some songs were higher than I thought and others were lower. For example, I usually thought of Weiss’ volume 4 song to be her best one, but it actually ended up losing to two of her others. It’s always nice to listen to the classic tunes again to really appreciate where they go. Over 90% of the RWBY songs are excellent so even low scoring ones can be quite great. Naturally the volume 6 tunes are incomplete so we’ll have to work with what we have. That’s enough of an intro though, lets get to it!


47. Smile –
46. Boop –
45. All Our Days
44. BMBLB –
43. Wings –
42. Home –
41. Shine –
One thing you can see from this collection of songs is that most of them are quite emotional. Nothing wrong with a good emotional song of course. Most of these have fairly catchy beats and all, but they aren’t as blood pumping as the ones that are higher on the list. I love the more adrenaline based songs of RWBY so naturally these would be fairly low. Still, they are well written.

40. Cold –
39. Gold
38. Ignite –
37. Big Metal Shoe –
Ignite is one of the few songs where I thought it sounded a lot better before the full version was released. The rap section wasn’t all that great and some extra instruments were added which takes away from the impact of the song. Big Metal Show is just a bit too loud to fully enjoy which definitely ends up holding it back quite a bit.

36. Caffeine –
35. Neon –
34. Dream Come True –
33. All That Matters –
While Caffeine is a very action heavy song, it’s just not as soothing to listen to as most of the other tunes. Neon has a fairly catchy theme but the lyrics don’t really work for me. All That Matters was a nice emotional song. I think it succeeded more than some of the other similar style tunes we got.

32. Not Fall in Love With You –
31. Like Morning Follows Night –
30. Mirror Mirror Part 2 –
29. Forever Fall –
28. Red Like Roses –
27. I’m The One –
26. Rising –
25. I May Fall
24. Let’s Just Live –
Red Like Roses is definitely a classic song. As the first RWBY song to ever come out it is certainly pretty nostalgic. There aren’t a whole lot of lyrics here, but the beat is solid and really works well with the action scene. We got a good remix in volume 6 and I wouldn’t be surprised if we get another one towards the end of the series. It’s definitely a good example of a song being carried by a great beat. Rising was a good theme song. It may not have the same energy as some of the other openings, but it’s good. I May Fall for example did a good job of showing that the series was about to escalate the stakes quite a bit.

23. When It Falls –
22. Lusus Naturae
21. Nevermore –
20. Bad Luck Charm –
19. Indomitable-
18. This Time –
I was not all that impressed with Lusus Naturae at first. The song’s beginning is rather rocky, but from there it has one of the best beats in the series. Likewise, Nevermore is a really nice song, but just a bit rough around the edges compared to some of the other songs like Miracle. Bad Luck Charm makes for an epic song even if Qrow is whining for most of it. It worked really well for his fight scene. Indomitable is one of those songs we haven’t heard much from yet, but what we got was very nice. I think this song could certainly rise up the charts once we get the first version.

17. The Triumph –
16. I Burn –
15. Sacrifice –
14. The Path to Isolation –
13. This Life is Mine –
12. From Shadows Part 1
The Triumph was a nice return to form for RWBY as things finally started looking up for the heroes in volume 5. It’s a solid intro theme that is pretty uplifting. I Burn (clean version of course) was a great theme ofr Yang as it really highlights her fighting spirit and the brutal nature of her fighting style. Weiss has two songs in a row here with both of them being quite good. Her ongoing plot with the mirror in the songs is always fun and trying to resist her family lineage makes for great lyrics. Then From Shadows does a great job of effectively having two different songs merged into one. The beats go up and down but with rhyme and reason that keeps it on the higher end of the RWBY songs.

11. Red Like Roses Part 2
10. It’s My Turn –
9. Miracle –
8. Time to Say Goodbye –
7. All Things Must Die –
6. Die –
5. Lionized –

We’re getting close to the top now. Part 2 of Red Like Roses is a great sequel to the original. It’s very fast paced and fits any action scene. Miracle was a very impressive song from Volume 6 that helped start the volume on a high note. It’s really well written and the song just pops out at you. All Things Must Die is a great song for Raven/Cinder. It feels like a nice semi sequel to Die even if they might not be in direct connection. Die will always be an excellent song and Lionized really shows you Adam’s original goals. He may not have gone down the right path, but he did help the Faunus get a lot of respect through fear thanks to his actions.

4. Armed and Ready –
This is definitely a great song. It has a perfect blend of action themes while also being fairly emotional. It’s a shame that this wasn’t able to play during the recent Yang vs Adam fight as it would have been awesome to see even if maybe a little too obvious. Still, it’s an excellent song and it’s going to be tough to top that one for the Yang themes.

3. One Thing –
As Neo is one of the best characters in the show it makes sense that she would have an awesome theme to go along with that. We’ve only seen a glimpse of the song so far, but it’s already shaping up to be one of the all time greats. It does a good job of telling Neo’s story as she doesn’t talk in the series.

2. Divide –
This is a fairly close second place. Divide makes for a perfect villain theme with Salem basically gloating the whole time. It was perfectly timed for the credits and would work really well as a battle theme as well.

1. This Will Be The Day –
It probably comes as no surprise that this is the best RWBY song of them all. It’s basically perfect and really helped start the series on a high note by having this as the theme song. I do hope we get this for the final fight in the series because that would be awesome. I’ve heard this song hundreds of times and will certainly keep hearing it as it’s quite timeless.

Well, those are my RWBY song rankings. The series has definitely delivered with a ton of awesome songs. I don’t see any dethroning the number 1 song here, but anything’s possible. Now the wait for Volume 7 continues.

Editorial

Best of 2018


All right guys it’s time to look at the Best of 2018 in various areas! WordPress used to give us a detailed stat sheet as well which I certainly miss, but I’ll improvise and throw in a bunch of stats as well. I was having some trouble deciding which categories, whether it should be top 3, 5, or 10, and a bunch of other things. Listed below are what I ultimately ended up choosing. 2018’s been a pretty power packed year. It was the first year I ever got under 100 games in my backlog. It also saw the return of Super Smash Bros with the most recent installment that is guaranteed to make waves. Wrapping up the video game news is the fact that it revitalized the Switch, it went from collecting dust to getting over 600 hours in it between Fortnite and Super Smash Bros. It’s automatically become one of the most played consoles in the blink of an eye. There are definitely quite a bit of categories so without further adieu lets jump into the stats and categories.

In 2018 I got 153,292 views. This is a bit of an increase from 2017 which is cool. I’ll aim for 2018 to have a more consistent posting schedule. I tend to be on and off with the posts, but getting at least one post up per day would be cool. I’ll probably start that in February though as I’m still busy catching up in games for this month. I published 1275 new posts including close to 350 reviews and over 800 battles. Finally the blog has now reached 5 million views which is awesome!

Top 10 Most Viewed Posts in 2018

Naruto Ultimate Ninja Storm
One Above All vs Goku
I am accepting Requests
Goku vs Beyonder
Allosaurus vs Raptor
Thor vs Galactus
Giant Octopus vs Bones
Mephisto vs Thanos
Naruto Ultimate Ninja Storm Stats and Records
Why Sonic Forces is going to be better than Mario Odyssey

Some of these posts are a little surprising like the Naruto Ultimate Ninja Storm ones. They didn’t get any comments recently or anything like that so I’m guessing that the images got a lot of clicks. That’s definitely pretty cool.

I’ll quickly give a shout out to some of my more frequent commenters (I don’t think I’m spelling that word right but it doesn’t seem to work well with either variation but you know what I mean) : iKnowledge, riagabriella, riaastuff, jhg195, and Kratos god of war. For the following commenters who have their own sites I have linked them into the names. You should check them out, their sites are definitely a blast!: Krystallina, Livid Lightning, Paul Bowler, The Otaku Judge, and Anime Girls NYC

Top 5 Theatrical Films

1. Avengers Infinity War
2. Mission Impossible: Fallout
3. Spider-Man Into The Spiderverse
4. Black Panther
5. Aquaman

This was definitely a pretty tricky one. There were quite a few solid movies of 2018 which is definitely a good thing. Infinity War and Fallout were easily the top 2, but after that it gets pretty tricky. You’ve got a slew of titles thrown in there. Some just barely didn’t make it but deserve a quick mention like Creed II, Bumblebee, and Ant Man and the Wasp. I would give Venom a shoutout but honestly it couldn’t quite keep up. CBMs definitely dominated the year as expected with only Mission Impossible keeping up. Naturally this is only counting big mainstream theatrical films or My Hero Academia would certainly be up there.

Top 5 Video Games of 2018

1. Super Smash Bros Ultimate
2. Dragon Ball Fighterz
3. Blazblue Cross Tag Battle
4. Seven Deadly Sins: Knights of Brittania
5. Sword Art Online Fatal Bullet

As with the films the top 2 are extremely easy here. Super Smash Bros Ultimate is essentially the perfect fighting game and FighterZ has more care into it than I would have thought possible. Then we have Cross Tag Battle which is also excellent and ArcSYS always delivers with the combat. After that the next two are pretty tricky. Seven Deadly Sins actually managed to bump off Black Clover along with SAO. Sins just has a solid story and a good amount of bonus content while Fatal Bullet had a long campaign and a terrific combat system. I’ll give shoutouts to Black Clover, Secret of Mana, Sonic Mania, Crash, and Spyro for putting up a valiant effort though. These games will not be forgotten.

Top 5 animated films I saw in 2018

1. Cardfight Vanguard Neon Messiah
2. My Hero Academia: The Two Heroes
3. Digimon Adventure Tri: Confession
4. The Death of Superman
5. The Iron Giant

Cardfight and My Hero naturally take center stage here. These films really brought on a ton of action and excitement all the way through. Confession is definitely one of the best Digimon films out there and really did a great job of furthering the plot. The Death of Superman is another adaption of the classic Doomsday story and you really can’t go wrong there. Finally, the Iron Giant really exceeded expectations with how well made it was. I have to throw the various Equestria Girl films a shout out as they were quite solid. Naturally the same goes for the rest of the Digimon Tri films and the Scooby Doo/Brave and the Bold team up. There are quite a few good films here.

Top 5 live action films I saw in 2018

1. Sherlock Holmes Pursuit to Algiers
2. The Taking of Pelham One Two Three
3. Murder on the Orient Express
4. Sherlock Holmes and the Secret Weapon
5. Sherlock Holmes Terror by Night

This is probably the toughest section because I’ve seen over 150 films this year. The Sherlock Holmes titles I certainly don’t have memorized, but I remember liking the 3 I listed above quite a lot. I could even make a case for all 5 selections being different Sherlock Holmes titles. Pelham One Two Three and Murder on the Orient Express were both terrific films as well though. They had a nice blend of suspense and humor. (Humor more for the former, the second one is an intense mystery thriller) I also have to give Scrooged a shout out for being a lot better than even I had remembered it to be.

Top 5 Video Games I completed in 2018

1. Fortnite Battle Royale
2. Pokemon Y
3. Pokemon Sun
4. Driver: You Are The Wheelman
5. .Hack Part 3 Outbreak

Naturally in this list I’m not counting the video games that came out in 2018 so there won’t be any overlap here. This list was pretty stacked considering that even an exceptional game like Professor Layton & The Miracle Mask barely didn’t make the cut. There were also a lot of fun app games like Dragon Ball Legends and Dragalia from this year. The Pokemon games are always elite though and Fortnite has completely changed the shooting genre for the better. Driver still lives on as the best Open World game and .Hack’s plot is as intriguing as ever. I look forward to finally getting the 4th game and finishing up the saga once and for all.

Top 5 TV shows I finished in 2018

1. RWBY Volume 5
2. Yugioh Arc V
3. Future Card Buddyfight X
4. Cardfight Vanguard G: Z
5. My Hero Academia Season 3

Definitely a very strong year for shows. Naturally RWBY dominated the competition and after that the Cardgames took over. It’s always great to have all 3 major titles churn out a new addition. That probably won’t happen for a while since the next Yugioh title won’t be finished in the dub so soon so I’m glad I got to experience it at least once. Then MHA managed to surpass both Phi Brain and Sonic Boom to claim the 5th spot. Other solid titles include .Hack, Dinosaur King, and Monster Hunter. All 3 of those are solid shows in their own right as well.

Top 5 Manga I finished in 2018

1. Super Dragon Ball Heroes Dark Demon Realm
2. Spiral: Alive
3. Beyblade
4. RWBY
5. Kingdom Hearts II

Super Dragon Ball Heroes was definitely an awesome title. It’s essentially an official Dragon Ball AF with a lot of crazy things happening constantly. Spiral: Alive made for a very compelling story with an awesome plot. Beyblade’s got the action down to an art and RWBY is always exciting. I’m glad that now we have an ongoing story, that’s definitely going to be very awesome! Kingdom Hearts II felt like it went on for years before the online translations finally caught up so it feels good to finish it. Now I’m really all set for Kingdom Hearts III.

So, can 2019 have a better selection in any of these categories? Next year I’ll do a comparison section in the post so we’ll see how it stacks up. I can say with utmost confidence that 2019’s video games will not beat 2018’s. I think it’ll also lose in shows, but maybe there will be a reasonable shot with the films. I dunno….honestly it’s looking like 2019 might get stomped for the most part. It’s going to have to depend on the upcoming Godzilla film to tip the scales! Well, that’s it for my 2018 wrap up. I’ll see you all next year!

Editorial

The film industry has forgotten why Godzilla films are so great


I’ve been a huge Godzilla fan for quite a while now. At this point it’s safe to say that I talk about him almost every day. It’s hard to say just how many years it’s been, but one of the first Godzilla films I ever saw was the Megaguirus one. It’s one of my least favorite titles so it didn’t start me off on the right foot, but it got me thinking how hype the G series could be. Eventually I went on to watch the rest of the Godzilla films and even bought 3 of the games. Naturally it’s been a great time to be a G fan lately with all of the new films and comics coming out. Unfortunately though, some of them seem to miss the point of what a Godzilla film is all about. Mainly I’m referring to the recent Netflix films, but others are guilty as well. So, I’m going to talk about why Godzilla films are a blast and the popular misconceptions around them.

1. Godzilla films have quality Kaiju fight scenes

At the very least this is why I love the Godzilla films. I always enjoy a good monster battle. See, the average monster film has to walk a fine line here since if the fight is too graphic it can fall into the animal violence camp. Likewise if the monster acts too much like a creature. It’s for that reason that I believe the films should stick away from having kid monsters in it like Minilla. Ultimately he serves as more of a liability to Godzilla than anything else. The Godzilla films have always been pretty careful about this. Occasionally you’ll get a fight that isn’t too fun like Megaguirus, Vs Gigan, and Kumonga, but for the most part they are rock solid. The Ghidorah fights are a blast, I like seeing Godzilla go up against Space G, etc. Whether Godzilla gets up close to dish out some hand to hand action on the villains or falls back on his atomic breath, the stakes are quite high from start to finish. These fights were a blast. I always have a hard time deciding which era was better for Godzilla, Showa or Millennium. Both are fantastic but for mainly different reasons. Showa had more close combat fights while Millennium went for the beam wars. Both approaches are fun and the important thing is that they had Kaiju battles. This is where some of the films start to mess up.

Take the recent Netflix film. Godzilla doesn’t actually fight against any real opponents. It’s just the army bombarding Godzilla for about an hour until they realize that this approach isn’t working and quickly fall back to plan B. That’s not entertaining. It’s like watching a human try to hit a robot with a sling shot for the whole film. We know that it’s futile from the start and that doesn’t change as the film goes on. It works as a great backdrop to solidify what a threat the Kaiju is of course, but that’s not supposed to be the payoff. Take Godzilla Against Mecha Godzila for example. It’s great to see the army give it their best of course, not because they have a chance, but because it shows how impressive the robot is to damage Godzilla when the full armaments could not. Take away Mecha Godzilla and you have to wonder why they are wasting so much ammo. You need a Kaiju opponent. For that reason, I consider some fan favorite Godzilla films to be among the weaker ones. The original Godzilla film, Godzilla Returns, the 1998 Godzilla film, both Netflix Godzilla films, and Shin Godzilla. Most of those are still quality films in their own right, but compared to the other Godzilla films I can’t really say that they rank. You end up sorely missing the fights that got you into the series.

Final Wars is still the best Godzilla film because it took the modern day effects of the Millennium era and mixed them together with the close quarters combat of the Showa films. It had nonstop action and easily the best soundtrack in the series. It was just a masterpiece and the human plot was actually really good as well. Usually I end up forgetting the human plot as soon as it pops up because I’m just ready for the Godzilla action to commence. Even if it takes 40 minutes for the Big G to appear I know that the payoff will be worth it. It’s why I’ve seen Final Wars 3 times already.

2. Godzilla can be a humorous series and that’s not a bad thing

Usually when someone says that the Godzilla series is pretty cheesy or that they were laughing the entire time that can be seen as negative when it’s really a positive. Yeah, the old Godzilla films have some dated effects, but that doesn’t mean they were bad. The English dubs of the films had fun turning the films into full comedies at times and it worked quite well. Seeing the monsters rolling on the ground and wrestling makes for great entertainment. It’s part of why I love the era so much. I may not take it all that seriously, but I’ll still be enjoying it quite a lot. The Godzilla series doesn’t need to be super somber or take itself seriously to be good. Some films choose to look at the situation really realistically with how the world would handle the Kaiju, while others do not. The former can work, but there are only so many ways you can portray this. Sometimes it’s best to skip that and get right to the action. In general my favorite Godzilla films are the ones that don’t bog themselves down in the drama and just get right to the action. The characters have a very New York attitude of “Lets get this done” regardless of how absurd the whole situation is. They’ll have time to think about it after the job is done. Again, I have to point to the recent Netflix film. They spend the whole movie talking about how scary Godzilla is without actually showing it. That just doesn’t work well in a visual medium like a film. Show us how powerful Godzilla is and it’ll be obvious that he’s a threat. Words aren’t necessary at that point. Show Godzilla flying by blasting the ground and that’ll be a funny scene, but also one that shows how much velocity is in his Atomic Breath. It just works. The recent films have tried to be extremely serious lately and don’t seem to understand that having a giant monster running through the streets can make for a bunch of funny scenes as well. At least Shin Godzilla had a little fun with it to be fair, but the recent American one and the Netflix movies didn’t even try.

3. Modeling the films after the original Godzilla is a mistake

There is a sect of Godzilla fans who really only liked the first film or have just enjoyed a small handful. I’ve met at least 2 people who felt this way and have heard from many others on Reddit. If the first film is indeed the only one that you like can you really call yourself a Godzilla fan? You’re a fan of the Godzilla film or even the creature, but not the series. On Reddit there’s a user who said that he always goes to watch the films in theaters, but has never liked any besides the original since they’re not as deep and moving. That’s fine (Although we’ve had many other G films with big messages like Shin Godzilla) but then it’s really just an outlier that you liked the original film. It’s like how I could like a James Bond film and not like the series. After you’ve churned out 20+ films, odds are that at least one of them will be good right? The first Godzilla film is actually one of my least favorite since the action isn’t quite there compared to most of the sequels, but it’s still a good film. It’s a little different from the average G flick though and shouldn’t really be used to compare to the other films for the most part. If you expect every G film to be like that one then you may be in for a surprise. However, that seems to be an aspect that the recent films have focused on. It is pretty similar to point 2, but I don’t watch a Godzilla film to see him being compared to a Hurricane or to just watch Humanity roll over and accept that he’s the strongest. I came to see aliens take over the planet and send their monsters after Godzilla. I came to see humanity awaken a powerful monster and for Godzilla to fight it. Without big conflicts like that, it’s just not much of a film. One of the most annoying things about horror films is that often times the humans have no shot. The Mothman, Paranormal Activity, Nightmare on Elm Street, etc. The villains are effectively all powerful so the humans are going to lose, it’s just a matter of when. If Godzilla is the only Kaiju in the film then the humans are doomed and the whole film feels pointless. Even if they do win it will just seem cheesy and not very earned.

However there is hope!

The new Godzilla film coming up sounds like it’s going to be a blast. Honestly I wasn’t really impressed with the trailer, but it was a teaser so I couldn’t expect to see too much of the monsters. The happy music seemed a little off and once again everyone appears to be super in awe of the monsters. Hopefully the film isn’t ultra dramatic there. At the same time, we are going to have at least 4 Kaiju, potentially a 5th. We should get a ton of action and the Godzilla introduction was already taken care of so maybe the action will occur right away. So long as the film was given a reasonable budget this time there should be nothing to worry about. The 3rd Netflix Godzilla film also sounds like it may finally give us some true Kaiju fights as well which would be a huge deal. I think both of these films are going to be excellent and will be a true resurgence for the series. The recent films have been solid though so don’t get me wrong there, but I feel like we are finally getting back to the heart of the Godzilla franchise. At its core it’s an epic movie series about a bunch of monster fights and aliens taking over the planet. The deep messages about nuclear war and fighting nature are nice backdrops of course, but the core premise will always be about the monsters. It’s what separates this series from all others and is why the franchise is iconic. Godzilla films will always be around for us so we need to be around for them. Hopefully more people will realize that Orga is the most underrated Kaiju out there someday though.

Editorial

Top 10 RWBY Fights

All right, it’s time for another RWBY list. The series has had a lot of quality action scenes throughout and that’s what has gotten the series so popular in the first place. It’s also pretty well balanced as every volume has been able to deliver a fight worthy of this list. This list isn’t quite as hard to create as picking the best characters but it’s still not easy either. Here are a few quick shoutouts to some of the fights that nearly made the list. The Food fight back in volume 2 was definitely a lot of fun. It was a friendly exhibition between team RWBY and JNPR but both teams really gave it their all and the choreography was on point. We have never gotten to see the 2 teams fight before and at this point it is unlikely that we ever will so this was the closest thing to such a team fight.

Another pair of shoutouts have to go to the 2 train fights that didn’t make it on the list. Blake vs Torchwick and Weiss vs the White Fang lieutenant. While the former fight was quite solid it was short and naturally less impressive than the season 1 fight. The Weiss fight was great and certainly delivered with a lot of quality visuals but it was just edged out by a few more fights. This one would fight with the Vernal fight as a close runner up. I also liked Yang’s battle against the two dancers in her trailer, but the fight was super short. All right, let’s launch into the list!

10. Ruby vs Torchwick and Neo

After seeing Neo completely wreck Yang back in season 2 I think it’s safe to say that everyone was looking forward to Neo’s next big fight. Well it finally happened here and as expected she had the upper hand. It is a little hard to say how well Ruby would really do against her since the fight was 1 vs 2, but Neo seemed to have the lead regardless. It’s a really solid fight that shows off the villains teamwork. The intense music in the background serves to amp it up even more.

9. Pyrrha vs Cinder

How could the final fight of Season 3 not make it? Pyrrha put up a really good fight considering that Cinder had ascended to be one of the 4 Maidens by this point. Her magnetic abilities are put to good use here and the fight has a lot of shockwave effects to emphasize how much power both of these fighters have. Even once you think Pyrrha is down for the count she manages to get one last hit in. A shame that her opponent was simply on another level.

8. RWBY vs Torchwick

We’ve seen teamwork from the villains so it’s time to look at the reverse. Team RWBY utilizes a flurry of combo moves in this match and it’s nice to see since during the timeskip between seasons 1 and 2 it’s expected that they would have had a lot of time to train. Each member is a lot more experienced now than they were before. We also got Yang’s cool “Die” song along with the best showing of her semblance in the whole series. Torchwick himself doesn’t get to fight much here, but his mech suit was certainly impressive. In general this is still the only real time we’ve gotten to see team RWBY fight a powerful opponent. Hopefully we get to see a fight like that in volume 6.

7. Torchwick vs Blake and Sun

This season 1 climax fight was great. For starters we actually got to see Torchwick fight hand to hand and it proved that he wasn’t simply a thug who hides behind his men. We knew that his cane was good from episode 1, but here he was easily crushing Blake and gave Sun an even fight. I don’t think he would have beaten Sun, but the fact that it is a possibility is certainly impressive. The fight is well choreographed and very fast paced.

6. Penny vs Pyrrha

This fight is probably a little underrated since it occurred amidst the plot really starting for the show so you were busy thinking about everything else. Penny’s manipulation with her swords is very similar to Pyrrha’s magnetism and makes for a fun match up. The music for this fight is really good and it’s just very fast. Both opponents are very skilled, but at the end of the day there is never any doubt as to who would emerge victorious.

5. Mercury and Emerald vs Coco and Yatsuhashi

The Tag Team matches in the tournament were definitely a blast. While the Weiss and Yang match didn’t quite make the list it was also pretty solid. This was the first time we got to see Mercury and Emerald fight for real and they lived up to the hype. The fact that they won this round so easily shows what a threat they are and it’s why to this day it’s hard to say whether any tag team of RWBY could hold their own against them. Mercury did most of the work in the opening stages and probably could have won in the 1 v 2, but Emerald’s illusions are just as handy. These guys are definitely a force to be reckoned with.

4. Tyrian vs Qrow

This fight is incredibly impressive and shows what a battle of professionals is like. Qrow and Tyrian are clearly fighting at a very high level here. Surprisingly Tyrian seems to have the edge for most of the fight which shows what a threat he is. The scene of Tyrian punching him was awesome since we rarely see a fighter attack without their weapon. The group fight prior to this one was a lot of fun too and this was easily the highlight of season 4. I’m definitely eager to see Tyrian reappear in the next volume. Also hopefully Qrow gets back to this level of power.

3. Yang vs Neo

This fight doesn’t have anything fancy. Neither fighter is using any kind of special energy blast and they aren’t in a volcano or anything. It’s simply a very basic hand to hand fight where both combatant is doing their best to bring the opponent down. That’s part of what makes the fight so impressive as it’s just a really serious battle of skill. Neo is clearly a few steps ahead here and even takes the time to make fun of Yang in the process. Definitely a great way to debut (Not counting cameos) and Raven’s appearance at the end was also pretty hype.
2. Yang vs Mercury

For a while this had been my favorite fight and it still holds up incredibly well. The battle music really sets the stage here. As soon as the first punch is thrown the tempo never slows down. Both fighters are absolutely relentless using every attack in their arsenal until the opponent is down. Their fighting styles of hand to hand vs kicks is also a nice contrast. It also helps that I’m a huge fan of both characters!

1. Raven vs Cinder

For all the heat the last volume has gotten in terms of avoiding fights, it definitely delivered with this one. While it’s hard to say if it was worth spending almost the entire budget in a single fight, it’s hard to deny the results. We got to see two of the strongest characters in the series duke it out and they weren’t pulling their punches. The strength and speed they exhibited is what you would expect from a Maiden. It was a great way to wrap up volume 5 and it’s also a high bar for all future Maiden fights. I will accept nothing less after seeing how great this fight was.

So that’s my Top 10! I look forward to seeing how many fights volume 6 will add to this. RWBY lists never get old, but my next ones/editorials will likely venture out into other franchises so be on the lookout for those!