RWBY: Official Manga Anthology Review


It’s time to look at RWBY’s recent manga anthology. This one got 4 volumes, one for each of team RWBY. It’s definitely nice to see more RWBY material even if so far it hasn’t taken advantage of the manga format as well as it could have. The current ongoing RWBY manga has a lot of potential, but the original one was basically an anthology as well as it retold each character short. I’m not a huge fan of anthologies and part of the issue is how not much of a story can happen in those. This one has that issue as well along with some stories having good art while some do not. Ah well, I’ll still take what I can get.

Of course, I usually start off by talking about the plot, but that won’t work here. I’ll start with the artwork. As I mentioned, it really varies depending on the story. Some of them look quite good with nice character designs and details while others aren’t really all that solid. It makes for an up and down reading experience. Each volume is a good size though so there is space for quite a lot of content.

On the other hand, this is still RWBY. As a result the characters can hold their own story with ease. It’s just nice to see them around in more stories. Due to the limited length per episode it’s not as if the writers can show us a whole lot of bonus material in the show. That’s sort of the point of the current RWBY manga as it will allow us to see more of the characters than the show could. For example in Yang’s volume there is a story where she beats up on a bunch of fake Neo dolls to exact her revenge. Then Neo sees this and is quite disturbed.

If anything, I’d say that the series plays out like a RWBY Chibi episode. Think of all those shorts and then packing them into a manga. So there’s certainly nothing bad about the series. I definitely enjoyed reading all 4 volumes. They’re fun and make for solid reads. It’s also a decent way to get someone to check out the RWBY series if they haven’t seen the show yet. The volumes are all about character interactions after all.

As each character gets her own volume they each get a lot of screen time. Yang’s definitely still the best member but each of the 4 bring something to the table. With Weiss’ glyphs she could probably give Yang a good fight if she was trying. Meanwhile Blake and Ruby are also quite skilled so it’s not like they would lose very easily. I suppose if we had gotten another volume it would have finally been time for Jaune and his team to show their stuff. They show up in these volumes of course, but it’s different being a side character versus a lead.

On a side note, I definitely do like the artwork for the volume covers. They really stand out and have a lot of detail. If that’s how the art looked inside then this series would have been even better. The actual volumes are quite high quality and as I mentioned they are bigger than the average volume. As a result they feel a bit like an omnibus. It’s a style that I wouldn’t mind becoming the norm. It’s not big enough where the volume would be awkward to read, but big enough where it feels special.

Overall, The RWBY Anthology is good. It’s hard to really discuss it much due to the style of the manga though. The current ongoing will likely end up being the definitive RWBY series though since it has an ongoing story. It’s a shame that the ongoing’s art is also a little below average though. Maybe RWBY characters are just really hard to draw or something. It could be a while before those stories come out in America though so now it’s back to the waiting game. I don’t know when the RWBY comics are coming out, but maybe those will be close. I’m wondering if those will also adapt the show or if they go for something totally different. I’m hoping the latter as we don’t need two adaptions. Maybe have the comic writer take their own spin on the franchise. That’d be pretty cool.

Overall 7/10

Advertisements

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.

RWBY Volume 6 Review


It’s time to take a look at RWBY Volume 6. This show is still the greatest of all time and volume 6 is a real return to form in many ways. We get to see some old characters, questions from way back in volume 1 are finally answered and even the fight scenes are back to their prime. While Volume 3 is still the best, Volume 6 easily climbs its way up to being the second best volume. It’s just a great time to be a RWBY fan as we also have the current manga going and other projects lined up. It’s all most impressive I must admit.

Volume 5 ended with the team finally managing to secure one of the 4 relics. They now plan to go to Atlas in order to have Ironwood secure the relic while also getting a lead on the next one. Unfortunately getting there won’t be very easy as Salem’s group, Cinder’s Group, and other enemies all plan to stand in their way. Fortunately, team RWBY is finally united once more and together they can stand up against any force. Physical threats may not be what they should fear though as certain truths come out which force them to re-think their entire mission.

As always the soundtrack for this volume is quite amazing. RWBY has never had a weak volume, but that just makes this all the more impressive as it’s tough to just keep on churning quality tunes like this. The best themes are the Neo theme, Adam theme, and Miracle. Then we have other high quality songs like the volume 6 intro and the emotional theme for Pyrrha. The only theme that I’m not crazy about is the one for when the team fought the robot, but of course it was just a small sample so we’ll see what the full theme sounds like. It’s hard to say how the soundtrack stands up to previous volumes, but it’s definitely 5/5 star material.

Then we have the animation which is great. As I mentioned in the intro, the fight scenes have been vastly improved. We’ve already seen the potential that this post volume 3 animation style brings through dynamite fights like Qrow vs Tyrian and Raven vs Cinder, but Rooster Teeth seemed to be having some trouble really getting the heroes to fight the way they used to. Well, whatever they did between volumes worked as we get a dynamite action scene in the premiere and then we get other battles like Cinder vs Neo and Adam vs Yang which are top notch. As fight scenes are one of the reasons why the series got so big in the first place it’s great to see them return. It’s no small reason as to why the volume was so good.

Of course, then we also have the excellent writing to thank as well. The series has always been able to grab your attention with ease and this one is no exception. I’m definitely enjoying the plot and the character interactions are always on point as well. We’re finally getting most of the questions in the series answered to the point where it feels like we could reach the end game soon. As each volume is about as long as a movie I think we could reasonably end the whole saga by volume 9, but there are also enough supporting characters and sub-plots going on that it could last til way after that as well. Either way I’m cool with that. If any part of the writing can be a little weak it’s in the humor. The characters from Atlas seem a little too extreme at times. Calavera and her rival aren’t particularly amusing. Nor are the two bodyguards. Still, it could be way worse of course. I’ll take a little forced humor over crude humor gags which the show has always avoided.

A big character in volume 6 is certainly Adam. He got his own short before the volume aired and the writers hyped him up quite a bit. After 5 volumes of appearing once in a while, his character arc was finally going to end here. His character has had a very mixed history over the years. While he was well liked in the first two volumes, people started to lose faith in him by 3. Volume 5 wrecked him for most fans to the point where it was too late by volume 6. He’s still my favorite character in the series, but you can definitely see why he isn’t for everyone. I’ll probably write some kind of article on him soon so I won’t go too into detail here. He gave us some great fights in 6 and has solid dialogue throughout. He may not be a fan favorite, but he definitely works well as the big boss of the season.

Another character who got a lot of attention here was Salem and through her development we saw more of Ozpin as well. This was the longest episode in the season which makes sense because it finally told us the true origin of this end boss and why she turned to the dark side. It’s a very interesting episode and you ultimately have to decide who was right, Ozpin or Salem. Personally I was on Salem’s side. While the power did start to go to her head, she still stayed very sane and reasonable during that stretch. Ozpin is the one who decided to pretend that he was on her side only to try running away with their kids. If he had actually tried to talk to Salem face to face then I think they would have been okay. He’s the one who was very unreasonable here.

Ozpin is pretty content to work with the gods even though they’re the ones who messed up Salem in the first place and appear to be rather malicious. They did come close to ending the human race after all. You now have to question Ozpin’s decision to gather all of the relics as doing so will just bring the gods back to murder them all. Meanwhile it’s hard to say why Salem wants them. I’m hoping she is planning on attacking the gods or something which would be pretty cool. It’s too early to guess at the exact goals right now, but I’m definitely rooting for Salem to take down her rival once and for all.

Meanwhile this may be Ruby’s best volume yet. She’s really gotten used to her leadership role and this is the first time where we actually see her giving out orders. She’s stepped out from Qrow’s shadow and her character arc appears to be complete. She’s close to mastering her silver eyes as well which is good. Weiss gets the least development from the 4 in this volume but she already had a lot in 4/5 and it looks like 7 will be another big one for her so that makes sense. Blake and Yang get their closure with the Adam plot so that was important. Yang is effectively over her trauma now and Blake’s resolve to never run away again is confirmed. She’s definitely come a long way. While Blake is still my least favorite of the main 4, she could possibly pass Ruby for 3rd at some point. It was just her bad luck that this would also be such a great volume for the group’s leader.

For characters who didn’t look so good, we’ve got Oscar and Qrow. Qrow spends most of the volume whining and really not looking like the reliable guy you can count on. His abilities also don’t seem nearly as impressive as they once were. He feels like he would be on an even playing field with the main 4 rather than being a large step above. After the Grim Reaper said that Yang has surpassed her as well, it really shows that the grown ups just can’t keep up. Meanwhile Oscar is annoying as he takes things super personally and then vanishes in the middle of the night to do some shopping. There still doesn’t feel like there is much point to his character. Take Oscar away and the series really wouldn’t change to be honest.

Back to the Grim Reaper for a second. While I’m not a big fan of her, I did really like the flashback sequence we got where she fights off a group of bandits. Her fighting style is a lot of fun and it’s certainly nice to finally see another silver eyed warrior. She did get a little outshined by the shark tooth girl but that made the whole thing even better. While brief, the two can definitely be considered to be some of the stronger characters in the series.

Salem’s main minions don’t get a lot to do here, but we do have some scenes to explore what Mercury and Emerald think about the whole situation. It’ll be interesting to see what they do from here. Mercury’s days of hype do seem to be gone now though so his next fight will probably be his last. I could see Emerald having more to do, but I wouldn’t be surprised if Salem or Cinder ends her. Either way I don’t see her escaping alive. Tyrian, Watts, and Hazel don’t do much of anything, but we should at least get to see the first two fight in the next volume.

There’s not too much to say about Team Jaune. Nora and Ren still feel extremely weak and desperately need some kind of power up to make them relevant again. Jaune is basically holding the team together at this point and hopefully he has something up his sleeve for when the team fights their next opponent. If he can use his aura amplification to do something with his sword then he has got a lot of potential there.

I do think this volume felt a little too short though. While the episodes started out rather long like with the Salem adventure, the final episodes were all extremely short. Perhaps not more so than previous volumes, but with the increased budget and mainstream attention I’d like it if we could get more full length adventures. I’m assuming Gen-Lock took a lot of time out from RWBY, but hopefully for next season we’ll get more footage. After all, we lost a whole episode here to limbo. (Gen-Lock looks fun of course, but not in the same league as RWBY so I still want Rooster Teeth to give this title the bulk of its attention) Also, the big Kaiju didn’t make for a great final boss. He ultimately went down in a single hit after he was frozen which doesn’t make for the most intense final boss. I think shifting it so that the Adam scene was the final part of the climax would have worked a little better. I don’t see Adam returning, but with the way the scene went it’s definitely possible as a shock value twist.

Finally, we got the big return of Neo here. It’s been a very long time since she last appeared so I’m glad to see her return. The scene was handled perfectly as her theme music is one of the best in the series. It amplifies the hype a lot more than if the scene had no music. Her fight with Cinder also reminds you just how good she is. Without Cinder’s Maiden abilities she certainly would have lost so it’s fair to say that Neo is high tier and can probably take on just about any non-maiden. We’ll see if she ends up being a little nerfed or something, but otherwise her partnership with Cinder is probably enough to take down team RWBY+Qrow+Team Jaune+Oscar I’d say. Of course with a large scale battle like that it is possible that teamwork will make all the difference. Also it’s unlikely that such a fight will happen since we have so many other parties running around like Salem’s group and the Atlas fighters.

As for the after credits scene, it’s pretty weak to be honest. Salem is making more Grimm…that doesn’t seem like a threat though. By definition Silver Eyes eradicate Grimm with no exceptions. We found out that the ability is straight from the light god so I don’t think Salem could override that. Most likely they will serve as a diversion or something to keep the military busy or Ruby’s friends. Still, I feel like if they go up against any named character they would just be fodder. It makes sense to have a Grim invasion for pure numbers of course, but it shouldn’t have been the big cliffhanger scene.

Overall, RWBY is in great hands as always. I have high hopes for volume 7 as expected and it’ll still be tough to beat this volume. Still, with all of the characters in motion there is definitely a real chance that it could be the best volume yet. We should be getting a ton of action scenes there so I’m glad that the crew has confirmed that they are already working on the next volume. The more development time on that the better and you can never start too soon. If you haven’t started RWBY yet then I recommend binge watching the whole series and fixing that ASAP. It’s no exaggeration to say that this is the greatest TV show of all time.

Overall 10/10

RWBY The Official Manga


I forgot to add this one a few days ago. So, RWBY finally has a manga that is going to re-adapt the show while adding a few twists and turns which is an awesome concept. We’re pretty early on in Volume 1 right now, but I’m interested to see how this is going to go. An ongoing RWBY manga is something we have always needed. I’ll have a review up when the series finishes, but I don’t see that happening anytime soon.

Overall 8/10

RWBY: Amity Arena Stats and Records

Stats time!

Level 3
Trophies 56
Wins 2
Towers Destroyed 1
Cards 14/41

Cards

Jaune Level 5
White Fang Thugs Level 4
White Fang Gunners Level 2
Ursa Major Level 2
AK-200 Level 4
Lancers Level 2
Yatsuhashi Level 3
Ribbon Blake Level 3
Scythe Ruby Level 2
Ice Weiss Level 1
Baby Death Stalkers Level 3
Nolan Level 2
Biker Yang Level 2
Boarbatusk Level 2

RWBY: Amity Arena Review


It’s time to take a look at the recent RWBY game that came out. No, not the super awesome Chinese one that arrived this year, but the watered down Tower Defense game that America got. I had pretty low hopes for this one from the start because Tower Defense just isn’t my cup of tea, but I figured I would give it a shot just in case it was good. Well, unfortunately it is not and the game is incredibly bare bones. There is little to no content to be had here so if the gameplay isn’t particularly fun then it’s dead on arrival. Lets look at the missed opportunity that is Amity Arena.

So what is a tower defense game? Well, you start off my assembling a team of 8 characters based on the cards you have. A typical starter pack is Ruby, Jaune, Yasuhashi, and a bunch of Grimm and Atlas soldiers. The game then loads you onto a small map. There are two mini generators and one big one on your side of the field and the same is on the opponent’s. You can your cards into battle to watch them run over to the opponent’s side while they do the same to you. You win as soon as the main generator is defeated, but if the time runs out then whoever destroyed more of the mini ones wins. If it’s a tie then nobody gets any rewards. That’s the whole game in a nutshell there. The matches don’t have a lot of variety since you’ll be using the same cards over and over for a very long time until you can buy others. Unfortunately you don’t get a whole lot of money per win either. This is definitely more of a P2W title than the other mobile games that I’ve played as of late.

There’s nothing wrong with a P2W title, I just want to put that out there. However, it can still be a little rough to see how small the rewards are. There’s not too much reason to keep playing if you’re F2P. Of course, I’d argue that there isn’t much reason to keep on playing regardless since there’s just not much to the game. Lets get away from the PVP mode for a second. What else is there to do? Well….nothing. There are no other modes aside from a practice mode where you just play against the A.I. to test out strategies. That’s the entire game. This is a game that is made for PVP. You can go to the shop and buy stuff, but that’s also it. There’s no story mode or galleries or anything like that. This game seems to have been made with no real budget which is a shame.

There’s only one good thing about this game and that’s how great the technicals are. First is the soundtrack. There are remixed themes for many of the songs from the first 4 volumes and maybe even some from volume 5. You at least get to hear a lot of cool tunes while playing. Still, if I wanted some music I would just boot up Youtube. Then we’ve also got the fact that the game looks really nice. There’s a lot of cool artwork here and the character models are on point. The aesthetic of the game makes it easy to look at and the colors are very vibrant. I feel like most of the effort went into making sure that the game looked veyr fancy and appealing. That’s certainly nice and I’m glad that the game doesn’t look ugly. Still, there isn’t a good reason to keep on playing this game if we’re talking about the gameplay. That’s what I’d say the disappointing part of this is. Even if you’re a tower defense game, couldn’t the developers have added a story mode? I’d keep playing if there was a story, but without one the game is sunk. Not all app games need a story of course, but if not then you have to have a lot of other modes to keep you busy. Say what you will about Pokemon Go, but there is enough content to keep you busy there for years. Not so for Amity Arena.

It doesn’t help that Amity Arena was completely glitched out for the day of release. Not a particularly good look although I’ll give the developers props for fixing it up with a patch by day 2. I’m sure they were all super stressed at that point. I’m sure the game will still make a reasonable amount of cash given how many micro transactions are in the game. People tend to eat that stuff up. I also do like that Pyrrha and Penny are currently the two top tier characters in the game. It’s a nice way for the fans to be able to remember those two at their best.

Overall, Amity Arena did not impress me. I dare say that it may be the weakest app game I’ve played since the Domino’s one and at least that one gave me real points so I could order a pizza pie. Amity Arena is just one of those games that seems to be made to earn a quick buck and doesn’t strive for much beyond that. You always want to make money as an app developer of course, but at least put in the effort to make this a complete title. Who knows, maybe they’ll improve the game and I’ll find myself back here one day, but as of right now the app is getting uninstalled as soon as I’ve finished uploading my stats page. Hopefully we can get the other RWBY game to show up soon since that one looks a lot more fun. It’s a fighting game for starters and does have an actual story. That’s two checks for that one. It may not have full voice acting and such like this one had, but there’s not all that much point to it with no story. There is a mysterious mode that is labeled as “Coming Soon” so lets keep our fingers crossed there.

Overall 4/10

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!

Blazblue Cross Tag Battle Stats and Records

Stats Time!

PS4 Trophies 12/43
Survival Mode Record 5 Wins
Illustrations Unlocked 12/17
Movies Unlocked 1/2
Stories
Episode P4A 100%
Episode RWBY 100%
Episode Under Night In-Birth 100%
Episode Blazblue 69%

Blazblue Cross Tag Battle Review


It’s time to take a look at one of the most eagerly awaited games of 2018! The instant that the first teaser trailer came out I knew that this was going to be an all star title. RWBY characters were finally getting a chance in the spotlight and I was also finally able to experience the Blazblue fighting style. Needless to say the game is a blast. Unfortunately while the game was expected to be relatively low budget, I still did expect a little more than what the game had to offer. It’s a great title, but perhaps one that I cannot call masterful.

The premise of the game’s story is that every character from 4 different worlds have been kidnapped. Each world gets 4-8 different fighters who compete in a big tournament to decide all of their fates. The champion must grab all 4 of the Keystones and make it to the end. Sounds simple enough, but will this mysterious cosmic being really let them go so easily? You typically can’t trust these mysterious characters. Most of the characters here just want to fight so don’t expect most confrontations to end calmly.

There are 4 stories, one for each of the various series in the game. The stories have 8 battles within them and a general story in the background. Blazblue is the only story with multiple endings though. The stories are fairly quick at around 70 minutes each and only around 10 if you skip cutscenes. The cutscenes are pretty long and have voice acting which is great but each character only has 1 stock pose. This means that characters look like they’re about to fight in every scene even when it’s a peaceful discussion. The most obvious example of this is the Persona character whose illustration shows her throwing out a kick. You see this same kick for every single scene she is in. Most games come with at least 3 illustrations for exactly this reason and it’s actually a little crazy that this game only uses one. I’ve seen mobile games with what looks like a higher budget.

Also, the story doesn’t even make much sense at all. The high above being needs energy from the combatants in order to take over their worlds. She even has a rule in place that prevents them from fighting unless it’s a tag battle so as not to waste her time. Yet, she loses control of the characters randomly at times. Sometimes she is eavesdropping on the heroes to know their plans and sometimes she just doesn’t. She does such a glorious job of messing everything up that it makes it tough for you to take the game seriously. Her power level is just very inconsistent and most of the characters act completely out of character as well. I just think the story could have been way better and honestly it is the weakest part of the game. I wouldn’t even call the game low budget at all if not for the story. The story is what makes it appear that way with the writers just phoning in the plot and not really doing much with it. If we ever do get a sequel or a full fledged RWBY game, I hope they put ore thought into it.

The gameplay is your standard 2D fighter. You attack other players with long combos and finals smashes as you attempt to get their life bars down to 0. The battles are all 2 on 2 so tagging in and out adds to the strategy of it all. There are easy auto combos that you can use while you start the game, but eventually you want to move onto more advanced techniques or you will be doomed against the stronger foes. I have no complaints with the gameplay as it flows very well and is just very well done.

There are quite a few different modes to play here aside from the story. Naturally there is the training mode which is pretty handy as well as Tactics mode. There you learn combos and complete tutorials about the game. The vast majority of the game’s replay value is through it’s online and local multiplayer mode of course. Knowing this, most of the trophies in the game are obtained through these features. You can even obtain the Platinum in around 3 hours if you are truly rushing. If you don’t have online then you want to play a lot of multiplayer matches locally. If you are just playing for single player content then you will be done very quickly.

The game got a lot of controversy for locking half of the characters behind a paywall and rightfully so. The developers are basically just reusing the characters from previous games so it hardly costs them anything. I do appreciate the price of the game being reduced to help justify this, but it’s still not a good look. As a result you fight some characters in the game that you can’t even play as. We’ll see how much each character is, but I don’t think I will be purchasing any of them. I just don’t play the game enough to make it worth it as opposed to something like Smash 4.

One of the big positives of the game is its rich soundtrack. Blazblue has always had a bunch of great themes and now we get to hear the RWBY ones alongside it. Persona and Under Night’s themes aren’t bad either so it’s just a very complete soundtrack. It’s nice to have voice acting for all of the characters as well since it makes the game look more polished. The graphics are certainly top of the line so the game’s developers spared no expense in this arena. The Astral Finish move that each of the characters have looks great and the gameplay is very bright and dynamic. Even if some aspects of the game were rushed, these certainly weren’t.

Overall, Cross Tag Battle is a great game. You just have to decide on if you want to look at it in a glass half full view where you’re just glad that the game actually got made and licensed or in a half empty view where there is so much more that could have been done with it. It’s not perfect, but it’s still a game that I had a blast playing even if it was a rather brief experience. I’ll at least go back to unlock some more trophies and if I ever buy a month of PS+ to get some online trophies maybe I’ll even go for the Platinum. Surely getting to Silver Rank online won’t be that tough right? I’d recommend checking this game out if you’re a big fan of fighters or just want to be able to play as Team RWBY. That alone makes the purchase worth it.

Overall 8/10

Top 10 RWBY Characters

All right, it’s time to head back into the world of RWBY as I look at the top 10 characters in the series. There are a lot of quality characters and I’m sure that the list will continue to change and evolve as more volumes come out. 5 volumes is a good amount of content to make such a list though so here is how it is right now.

1. Mercury

I liked this character as soon as he showed up. His hairstyle and personality is very similar to Sasuke from Naruto. At this point we had already had quite a few villains, but none with the smug and confident nature of Mercury. His fight with Yang also showed just how skilled he was and solidified him as a true threat to any hunter or huntress. Unfortunately he hasn’t gotten a whole lot to do as of late but he is a villain that just hits all of the right notes. At most he just doesn’t make for a very convincing hero but that is probably low on his list of priorities.

2. Adam

This guy was pretty cool as soon as he showed up in the Black trailer. He was an experienced veteran whose abilities were even higher than those of the main characters. He’s also a villain who is fighting for a good cause. It doesn’t justify his actions but at least I can understand his motivation and why he feels like he had to succeed. Volume 5 didn’t really seem to understand this all that well as Blake became more of a priority for him. Still, at his core he is just a man trying to fight for equality by destroying everyone who stands in his way. Taking down Yang in a single hit was an insane feat and he is a character who just seems untouchable. Next to the 4 Maidens he is very likely the strongest character in the series. He is definitely a divisive one in the series but I dare say that he might have the strongest drive. Whenever he shows up you know that it’s bad news for the heroes.

3. Yang

At 3rd we have the best hero, Yang. As early as the Yellow trailer is was clear that she was going to be the best of the main 4. She is very confident and always eager for a fight. Her hand to hand combat skills is a nice way to make her unique from the others. Yang did lose her fighting spirit for a while during volume 4 which threatened to hurt the character a bit but she recovered for volume 5 and quickly got back to acting like her usual self. It is a shame that she lost her arm as the robotic one just isn’t as fun but I am eager to see Yang get a proper rematch with Mercury. She didn’t seem to be doing too well in the recent bout but it was hardly a fair 1 vs 1 fight.

4. Raven

Out of all the characters in the series Raven likely has the best debut of them all. Saving Yang just in the nick of time from Neo was pretty hype. Still, it wasn’t until volume 5 that Raven really came into her own as a great character. We got to see her as a master strategist and as a wild card who was dangerous to both sides. Obtaining the Maiden’s power and then keeping it quiet was genius. Honestly her plan would have been flawless if she has attacked Cinder right away in the vault as she would have gotten away with Vernal scot free. I am looking forward to what I feel is an inevitable confrontation with Salem although admittedly her odds don’t look great for winning such a fight. Raven has a lot of experience with her abilities though so if any maiden can beat her it would be Raven.

5. Torchwick

Torchwick isn’t one of the strongest villains at this point as he has long since been surpassed but his charisma is certainly one of a kind. He delivers a lot of clever dialogue whenever he is on screen and the fact that he can fight so well without aura is also really impressive. He was able to defeat Blake and Ruby while also proving to be an even match for Sun. It’s a shame that he didn’t stick around a little longer because maybe he could still hold his own with some of the heavy hitters. RWBY originally started out with a lot of humor to complement the action and Torchwick is a large part of why it worked so well.

6. Cinder

Cinder has really been the main villain of the RWBY series. Until volume 3 she seemed to be the leader of the villains. While we eventually found out that she had a leader, it didn’t change the fact that Cinder got the most screen time. As with Yang she took volume 4 to recover and came back better than ever in volume 5. Her vendetta against Cinder has caused her to be a little more aggressive and unhinged as of late but having half of your face burned off will do that. Cinder is probably the smartest character in the series and even before her Maiden abilities she was a considerable threat. Her presence will be missed in the future but at the same time I do think that her character arc had a perfect ending. Naturally if they decide to bring her back which is fairly likely I would have no qualms with that.

7. Neo

Neo is a relatively minor villain who instantly became a fan favorite during her fight with Yang. Her character is pretty unique as she can’t speak so her fighting style and facial expressions have to be used to decipher her character. She goes into action only on special occasions when she is trying to prevent the heroes from reaching an objective. Given how she effortlessly defeated Yang it’s clear that her abilities are at a very high level. As she is still alive I am hoping that she finally gets a big fight in volume 6.

8. Qrow

Qrow is definitely a fun character to have around who is a big contrast to the rest of the heroes. He is often very sarcastic to everyone and openly critical of any hero who isn’t Ozpin. There was a time where he was my favorite RWBY character but the days of him being a great solo act appear to be over. He’s turned into a bit of a yes man for Oz and has also been severely nerfed in the process. Nevertheless I won’t forget his great volume 3 debut where he fought Winter. Seeing a competent huntsman is also nice since half the time you wonder how useful the grownups really are.

9. Pyrrha

Pyrrha is a genius fighter and a true prodigy. Despite this, she surprisingly wasn’t cocky or super aggressive the way you would expect her to be. Instead she is one of the nicest characters in the series and has a great character arc. Pyrrha is definitely the most interesting character of team JNPR and made their plot a lot more interesting. While her odds of returning to the main cast get slimmer with every season, there is certainly always the chance that she will return. Her magnetic abilities served her well and I believe she would still be a threat to many of the current villains. Her abilities were ahead of their time.

10. Weiss

Finally we have Weiss. She started out as a very antagonistic character who was really critical of Ruby but gradually became one of her most loyal supporters. She’s had a lot of character development throughout the series and may be the most mature member of the group at this point. Even when she was out of practice Weiss was able to put up a bit of a fight against Vernal. Honestly I think she should have been able to win that fight but depending on what metrics you look at it may have been over 6 months since she had last fought a real opponent and Weiss had no time to train during that gap either. That really didn’t put her in top form for the fight. With her special rapier, Weiss always has the potential to become the strongest member of Team RWBY.

So that’s my list of the Top 10 RWBY characters. There are quite a lot of villains on that list but the balance between light and dark isn’t too skewed. (6-4 is pretty equal) The series does a great job of developing both sides and many characters in this list aren’t separated by all that much which is why the placements in the list tend to swap a lot. For example the gap between 4 and 7 is very small and that’s a big chunk of the list. At least now when someone asks who my favorite RWBY hero and villain is I will be able to quickly respond or take a peak at this list.