These are the honorable mentions of this season's anime-to-watch collaboration. There are four in all.
Written by Exile, Protonstorm, & Dexomega
Genre: Action, Mecha, Science Fiction
Spoiler-free Synopsis: During the initial moon landings, the Apollo 17 mission discovered a gateway to Mars on the moon. After years of conflicts, tension, and disagreement, Mars and Earth once again begin a conflict that will engulf both worlds. Mars is dead-set on conquering Earth with their superior mechanoid forces, while Earth will be lucky enough just to survive.
Why You Should be Watching: Aldnoah.Zero attempts to do things differently: the enemies are the ones with the overpowered technology, the main protagonist Inaho, far from being hotblooded or whiny, rarely emotes at all (though he is not emotionless) and wins fights through observation, analysis and pragmatism, as much attention is given to the politics of the show as the combat and some obvious consideration has gone in to how the science behind the Space Magic might function (not all of which is made apparent). The animation quality, coupled with a fantastic soundtrack, also aids in the enjoyment factor of the show. While it sometimes fails to realize its full potential, it manages to effectively use impressive action with moderately reasonable character development to craft something that is entertaining to watch.
Why You Shouldn't be Watching: Conversely, in its attempt to do things differently, it ends up becoming a grey ball of wibbly wobbly hand waves stacked on top of a perplexing lack of direction. Aldnoah.Zero is a mech show that doesn't like mechs. It's an ensemble show without the writing chops to have an ensemble cast. It's a war show that doesn't understand that random people dying leaves no impact. It tries hard to be a good show, but its lack of direction leaves it in a grey area between an ensemble show, a mech show, and a war show that is impossible to describe. Without the commitment to do any of these genres, it lacks a structure that it seems to be incapable of building itself.
Written by Aestevalis & Rockmandash12
Genre: Action, Comedy, Fantasy, Magical Girl
Spoiler-free Synopsis: One day, a magical rod named Ruby comes crashing into our main character Illya's bathroom. Ruby was running away from Rin Tohsaka, a magus, and makes Illya into a magical girl. When Rin finds out, she gives Illya the task of obtaining 7 class cards, which contain the spirits from heroes of legend. Illya has to fight a series of battles with the respective hero. However, a girl named Kuroe (who looks extremely similar to Illya) appears before her, and throws Illya's everyday life upside down.
Why You Should be Watching: Taking right up where the first season left off, the story takes a turn in the very first episode of the series, introducing an element that changes the tone of the series (in a good way), which creates a better mix of comedic and serious scenes. Miyu (one of the more interesting characters) is more open about her feelings for Illya, and thanks to Illya's obliviousness, this results in some of the best jokes in the show. Also, the show adds more characters from the Fate/ universe and the way they're portrayed living as normal persons in an everydaylife while still retaining some of their personalities makes for a very good comedic effort.
Why You Shouldn't be Watching: If you aren't currently watching this show, it doesn't really give you any incentive to do so. Fate/Illya is a spin-off of Fate/stay night, and already has a season one, and unless you've seen season one and like Fate/stay night, you don't have a reason to watch this. This show is made for the fans of the nasuverse, with references from all over the place, which limits it's audience quite a bit. Also, this show is a magical girl show, so it's much lighter in tone and more girly than Fate/stay night & Fate/Zero.
Written by EvenSteven02
Genre: Sports, Slice of Life, Comedy
Spoiler-free Synopsis: Haru and his fellow Iwatobi Swim Club members are back! However, since Haru, Makoto, and Rin are now high school seniors, they have to decide what to do with their lives once the school year is over. And, there are new rivals and competitions that the swim club has to face.
Why You Should be Watching: As in the first season, Kyoto Animation pulled out all the stops for the animation and sound design. The characters are still funny and lovable. The new characters also play well off the existing cast and offer new aspects on their personalities. Also, there are more muscles. Gou-approved!
Why You Shouldn't be Watching: It's more of the same. The same running gags from season one are here. There is barely a plot and it is quickly put aside in favor of well-animated swimming scenes and manservice. If you watched the first season and liked it, you will like this new one, too. If you weren't won over, then this season has nothing substantial to offer that will change your mind.
Written by Dexomega
Genre: Historical, Action, Drama, Romance
Spoiler-free Synopsis: This story revolves around Saburou, another high school student in Japan. One day he is thrown back into the Sengoku Era of Japan, where an escaping Oda Nobunaga, whom looks just like him, passes him on the road. Mistaken for Nobunaga, Saburou decides to become the famed Nobunaga and use his knowledge of the future to become the leader with aspirations of uniting Japan for the first time in history.
Why You Should be Watching: Nobunaga Concerto is heavily historical in nature. Unlike shows like The Ambition of Oda Nobuna, it isn't a comedy or a play on history, it is history in many ways. While there are fish-out-of-water comedic elements, it leans distinctly toward the drama side of the equation. While slow, it is very much exploring the calm reality that Saburou now finds himself in. In addition, the show is backed by a very nice soundtrack and fantastic ending theme. It's an all-around excellent show for people interested in the Sengoku era and calm, introspective shows.
Why You Shouldn't be Watching: The most jarring problem with Nobunaga Concerto is the 2.5-D animation style. It's very odd and off-putting. More importantly is how uneven the pacing for the show is. Sometimes the show moves through some elements so quickly that it is difficult to understand how much of a time gap there was between the scenes. It has issues keeping the casual viewer grounded in the show because of hand waves and rapid story progression in some cases.
This article was a collaboration by several people of the Ani-TAY community on Talk Amongst Yourselves. You can join the fun on our Sunday Cafes or by posting your own articles on Kinja with the Ani-TAY tag.