Berserk (2016) Season 2 PV

I’d like to say that it looks a little better than what I saw in the first season of the series but…I somehow doubt that it’s anything more than the staff picking the best 20 seconds of animation to show from the first episode. I can’t wait to see how they’ll butcher the Millenium Falcon arc in this season.

In much more exciting news, the Berserk manga returns from it’s latest hiatus with a new chapter on March 24th.

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2D Champions Episode 62: Berserk 2016 (Last Impressions)

In their greatest struggle yet, the Champions fight their way through episodes 2-12 of the 2016 Berserk anime to bring you a review of the most divisive manga adaptation of the year. Is it the worst thing ever? Can we actually find something good to say about it? Whether you love it or hate it, if you’re a fan of Berserk, you’re going to want to listen. Do not avert your gaze!

You can listen to our previous episode on Berserk 2016 by following this link:
2dimensionalchampions – Episode-47-berserk-2016-first-impressions

You can watch all of Berserk on Crunchyroll! Check it out here:
www.crunchyroll.com/berserk

And, most importantly, support the official release of Kentaro Miura’s epic manga masterpiece through purchasing the original books:
www.amazon.com/Berserk-Vol-1-Ken…ura/dp/1593070209

2-Dimensional Champions Episode 47: Berserk 2016 (First Impressions)

In this special ‘bonus’ episode, the Champions critique and discuss the first episode of the 2016 Berserk television series. Directed by Shin Itagaki with animation done by Liden Films/GEMBA/Millepensee; this adaptation of Kentaro Miura’s legendary Dark Fantasy manga is the first to focus solely on Guts as the Black Swordsman. Is this the adaptation the one the fans have been waiting for? Or are the Champions lost in a dark abyss of poor animation and infuriating writing? Listen and find out if you dare!

You can watch all of Berserk 2016 on Crunchyroll through the following link:
www.crunchyroll.com/berserk

Berserk Musou PV and Screenshots

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The official website for the upcoming PS4/PS3/PS Vita Berserk video not only put up a new promotional video but also some screenshots that give us our best look at the game yet. The game is set to be released in Japan on September 21st. It’s been generally assumed that an international and North American release is also being prepared for early 2017.

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Based on some recent interviews and the screenshots on the official site, the new game will be covering material from the Golden Age arc to the Millenium Falcon Arc. So far we haven’t seen anything past what was covered in the 2004 PS2 game but it would be really cool to be able to fight Ganishka as Griffith/Femto or the Sea God as Guts. I’m also really looking forward to cutting through countless more trolls as they are by far my favorite type of cannon fodder for Guts to decimate.

Griffith is an obvious choice for another playable character besides Guts but it also seems that Schierke and Caska will be playable as well. It would be fun to see a Puck mini-game or the option to play as Zodd in some way.

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There is also a variety of retailer exclusives based on where one can buy the game in Japan. There are a bunch of different things you can get but the primary incentives seem to be based around variant outfits for either Caska or Schierke.

You can visit the official site by clicking here and through the power of Google translate you can get a good idea of the different bonus items are. Since there hasn’t been any clear details on what the North American release will be like I have no idea what will ultimately get into that version of the game. I’m sure there will be some way to get the different character skins at least.

I really hope the game turns out well but so far it looks quite promising!

The Great 2016 Berserk Summer Festival

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Over the past several weeks there has been a literal deluge of Berserk news; so I’ve decided to just catch up with it all in one handy post. Before I jump into all of this though a few points: It is really, REALLY strange to be so inundated with Berserk announcements, trailers, and whatever else that it’s actually hard for me to keep up with all the new click-bait. I’ve been a fan of the series for just long enough to have been looking forward to the PS2 game back in 2004. Back then we only had one sub-par anime adaptation to complain about as some of us would wistfully dream of some sort of divine project that would not only beautifully animate the ‘No.1 Dark Fantasy Comic’ but also properly show non-manga readers just how much of the story they were missing out on.

Fast forward to June 2016 and take a look at the newest trailer for the upcoming TV series:

It’s a CG wonderland, isn’t it? and based on the new key visual at the top of this article, it’s confirmed that the new TV series will be making a brave attempt at adapting the ‘Binding Chain’ and ‘Birth Ceremony’ chapters of the Conviction arc. One of the broadcasters for the new series also revealed the episode titles for the first five episodes. What did we learn? Despite whatever meager traces of story that may be shown in the first episode, this new TV adaptation will be entirely skipping over the ‘Black Swordsman’ arc as well as the ‘Lost Children’ chapter of the Conviction arc. This should make anyone familiar with the original story go blind with rage. I do admit that I am morbidly curious to see how they will have Guts captured by Farnese and her forces if Guts wasn’t previously beaten to a pulp by Rosine. I’m also interested in seeing how they will get some of the more interesting elements of the Birth Ceremony chapter on TV.

I’ll be ranting much more about all of this after the series starts airing on a future episode of the 2D Champions Podcast.

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Meanwhile, and most importantly, it was announced that Kentaro Miura will be coming back from hiatus with a new episode of Berserk in the June 24th issue of Hakusensha’s Young Animal magazine. Subsequent episodes will also be published monthly for the time being. This is similar to when the series came back from hiatus last year and ran monthly for about 6 episodes. Volume 38 of the manga will also be released next week on June 24th. This new volume will have a new cover design which will be included on all future re-publications of older volumes of the series. Volume 1 is even being re-published with a brand-new cover image by Miura.

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And finally, a new Berserk video game has been announced at E3 this year. ‘Berserk Musou’ will begin with the Golden Age arc but will also include characters and stories from later in the series; although it has not been made clear how much of the whole story the new game will be covering. It also seems that it will be getting a North American release on both the PS4 and Steam. I think a Dynasty Warriors-style Berserk game could be really badass and it’s been way too long since the franchise has had video game tie-in. There is a teaser video for the new game but I actually found it to be really distasteful so you can check it out on your own. More information on the new game is coming soon, I’m sure.

It’s a really interesting time to be a Berserk fan and I’m still very excited to see so much buzz around the series. The new anime really doesn’t look very promising right now but I’m still hoping it will have it’s good points. Most importantly, the manga is coming back for at least a few months, and with Guts and company finally on Elf Island, I cannot wait to see what happens next.

Sources: Crunchyroll (1,2, 3), MoCa

New Berserk 2016 PV and Simulcast News

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There has been a bunch of Berserk news over the past few days. Let’s catch you up:

A German news site reported that the new TV series has been licensed by Universal Pictures in Germany and will run for 24 episodes. Here’s the link to the German article. Now this hasn’t been confirmed and this wouldn’t be the first time a German site has gotten Berserk news wrong. I still think that it will be a 12 or 13 episode series based on it airing in July and the time slot it’s in…but that doesn’t rule out the possibility that 24 episodes have been green lighted and that they will just split them up as Polygon Pictures did with Knights of Sidonia. So I’ll make another post when this the episode count gets confirmed in the months ahead.

Crunchyroll has acquired the rights to stream the new Berserk TV series this summer. The launch date and time as well as what territories it will be available in will be announced later. This is awesome news and it means we’ll be able to see new episodes very shortly after they air in Japan.

The official website for the series has updated with the new visual that I’ve posted above as well as comments from some of the staff on the new series such as Susumu Hirasawa, Director Shin Itagaki, and Guts’ voice actor Hiroaki Iwanaga. A new, interesting, addition to the staff is Kentaro Miura (the original creator of Berserk) as ‘story supervisor’. This is very interesting as I think it speaks to his unhappiness with the Golden Age films as well as his excitement to see the Black Swordsman version of Guts finally animated.

The opening for the new TV series will be performed by a band called ‘9mm Parabellum Bullet.’ I don’t have much of an opinion on this other than I hope that it’s a new cover of ‘Tell Me Why’ by the PenPals.

And, finally, the most exciting bit of news: A brand-new promotional video!

So, a couple of thoughts: This looks a whole lot better than the first PV from back in December. I expect that it’ll probably look even better than this as production continues (as it still doesn’t air until July) but, for the most part, this is a CG/2D animation style that I can live with. All that being said, it’s a whopping 38-second PV so it’s hard to say much of anything about how it’ll look and what the series will ultimately adapt from the comics.

The most badass part of the PV though? That new Susumu Hirasawa song. I can’t wait to hear the rest of it but what we do hear is legendary and directly in line with his earlier work for the series. It’s also of interest to note that whereas his two previous Berserk songs (Aria and Sign) had him singing in a made-up language, the new song ‘Ash’ has Japanese lyrics. This hasn’t happened since 1999’s Forces II and Indra so I’m really interested in finding out what Hirasawa has written…

Staff and Cast Listed for 2016 Berserk TV Series

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Leaked images of the upcoming April 8th issue of Young Animal have revealed the names behind the new Berserk TV anime that is set to begin airing this July. Here’s the list:

Director: Shin Itagaki
Series configuration: Makoto Fukami
Series configuration assistant: Takashi Yamashita
Main Character Design: Hisashi Abe
Music: Shirō Sagisu
Insert song: Susumu Hirasawa
Production: LIDEN FILMS
Animation production: GEMBA / millepensee
Cast:

Guts: Hiroaki Iwanaga
Puck: Kaoru Mizuhara
Farnese: Yōko Hikasa
Serpico: Kazuyuki Okitsu
Isidro: Hiro Shimono
Azan: Hiroki Yasumoto
Casca: Toa Yukinari
Griffith: Takahiro Sakurai
Skull Knight: Akio Ōtsuka
Narration: Unshou Ishizuka

The director Itagaki has previously been at the helm of shows such as Teekyu, Ben-to, and Basquash! but he has also worked on a number of much cooler productions such as Diebuster, Gurren Lagann, and Dead Leaves. With such a background, I can’t even guess as to how well Itagaki will do with adapting Berserk for television. Although Liden Films was involved with last year’s The Heroic Legend of Arslan television series, GEMBA and millepensee are handling the actual animation production. Again, I will really have to wait and see what this weekend’s new promotional video looks like before I can make a call about what the animation quality will be like. millepensee previously worked with Itagaki on Teekyu…and that show seems to just be about cute girls playing tennis. I have no idea what this could mean for the Berserk television series as OLM (the studio behind the 1997 Berserk TV anime) had been known for its work on the Pokemon TV series and it came out okay for a lower-budget 90’s anime. The Golden Age arc films were of course done by Studio 4°C, who have a fantastic history of interesting animation projects and we ended up with a trilogy of films with 2D and 3D animation that was amazingly inconsistent for such a well-renowned studio.

Although Studio 4°C is no longer involved in this new adaptation of Berserk, all of the principle leads from the Golden Age films are reprising their roles as Guts, Casca, Griffith, and Skull Knight. What’s really exciting is to see is a VA listed for Puck. He was sorely missed in the 1997 television series and it was especially painful to see him teased in the Golden Age films but not given a speaking role. It’s also interesting to note that Farnese, Serpico, Azan and Isidro are listed on that cast list. I half-expected to see Schierke on that list as well. I still think the series will be 12-13 episodes but based on this cast list I really have no idea what they will be adapting in that time. I initially thought this new television series would just adapt the first three volumes of Miura’s original manga and perhaps the Lost Children chapter of the Conviction arc. With the inclusion of Isidro, we are getting into material I really didn’t expect to see adapted anytime soon.

Shiro Sagisu (Neon Genesis Evangelion composer) is back on the soundtrack after having previously done the music for the Golden Age arc trilogy. Susumu Hirasawa is being credited with one insert song which will be titled “Ash” (Hai yo). No matter how the project turns out, it’s always nice to get a new Berserk-inspired Susumu Hirasawa song.

Along with all the news about the upcoming television anime, that upcoming issue of Young Animal also announces a new Blu-Ray box collection of the Golden Age trilogy that will be released on June 22nd.

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Even more exciting is the news that the long-awaited volume 38 of Kentaro Miura’s manga will be released in Japan on June 24th. As you can see from the image above, starting with volume 38, Berserk covers will now have a new cover style. The previous 37 volumes are going to be re-published with the new cover design as well. There will be more information about the new volume with this year’s Young Animal number 8.

A new promotional video for the 2016 Berserk television series is expected at this weekend’s Anime Japan event.

Sources: Crunchyroll, AnimeSlovenija