This is another show that came from a video game, and elements within the show make it feel like a game. “Atelier Escha & Logy: Alchemists of the Dusk Sky” (and that’s a mouthful of a title), tells the story of, nicely enough, the alchemists (left to right), Escha Mailer and Logix “Logy” Fiscario. They have been sent by Central to the city of Colset, to not only render help to the locals, but to try and investigate this floating city of ruins that hovers high above them.
This town is right on the edge of a wasteland, but somehow, it has managed to scratch out a living with apple trees, which are coveted around the lands. Still, it is a harsh and unforgiving land and the people are always looking for ways to improve their lot in life.
Ah, the video-game aspect. First, everyone is introduced with that banner that gives us their name and (if it were a real game) any vital statistics we need to understand their characters and what they do. Plus, when the alchemists render their help, it feels like a video game. In order for you to forge the sword and magic helmet, you need to mine the ore from the forbidden valley, so you need to contract with a protective spirit, which means you need to obtain the Crystal of Obedience, requiring a visit to the local tradesman who will sell you a map to get to the Dinkytown Grove, where you can gather the Purple Flowers of Hope and…
OK, it’s not that complicated, but that’s the feeling that you get. Like many shows of this type, we spend the first four episodes running them through their paces, so we can see what they are made of. The next four shows offer a kind of backstory, so we know the history of many of the participants. Lastly, the final four episodes are when the plot decides to show up and we finally get to the story, the real story.
It’s not a bad series, and one that I would recommend for people who are getting started with anime. The plot is simple, the characters easy to understand and the story-telling is done well. Plus, there are enough little clues for you to be aware that thing are not as they seem. The conclusion was a bit of a let-down, what I am going to refer to as the Ruby Slippers Syndrome: you always had it within you to learn or discover the truth, but you just didn’t know what to do or, (in this case) uncover the proper question to ask. That got a bit irritating for me.
It did keep my interest for the full run, so if you want a rest stop from the usual fare of vampires or giant fighting robots, this could be it.
On a scale of 1 to 10:
Artwork 7 (Standard, but good)
Plot 7 (Needed more direction)
Pacing 7 (Moves along consistently)
Effectiveness 7 (A bit too game-like)
Conclusion 7 (It does end, but there could be future tales)
Fan Service 2 (A similar show would be “Okamisan”)
Overall 7 (Needed something more)
And remember, it’s first run until you’ve seen it. What does Central want now?