Hagane Orchestra – Review

Hagane Orchestra:

Original Air Dates: October 9th, 2016 – December 25th, 2016

Reviewed by: Tom

This would work better if you had the cute girls doing it.

Synopsis: Hagane Orchestra is the newest in a long line of mobile phone games. Kureha and other members of the Defense Squad, characters within the games’ Irodori Settlement, are having a sit down to figure out how to make their game more popular. Watch as this group of fools try and come up with ways to ensure their game’s success, ranging from cross-media promotion to free tissues!

Review (Warning: Some Spoilers to Follow):

Hagane Orchestra is the latest in a long line of video game advertisement short-form (and long form) anime. The entire purpose of its existence is to get the word out about a new mobile game of the same name. However, unlike other such short-form anime, Hagane Orchestra is quite honest in its attempts to solicit your interest.

From episode 1 the anime admits that it’s an advertisement, and near every episode features gags, jokes, and attempts to find new ways to advertise the game and garner appeal. It’s actually refreshing in how unashamed and honest it is concerning it’s true purpose.

Aha! I knew it!

The jokes themselves aren’t amazing, in fact, much of the humor is tried and true, or at least predictable. All the same, it’s still amusing, and perhaps surprisingly, there’s a few highlights in the series, such as episode ten where Hagane abandons its attempts to advertise the game in favor of parodying Sound Euphonium and other school band drama anime. It’s actually quite cute and pretty funny.

But outside of its humor, honest and self-deprecating otherwise, Hagane is a mash of tropes. The characters are all standard, predictable stereotypes you’ve undoubtedly seen before. It’s unsurprising seeing as they’re all characters/units from the mobile game, which seems to be fairly generic and predictable as mobile games go.

The animation itself isn’t much to write home about either. The show does feature vibrant art thanks to an eye-catching color palette, and competent character designs, but lacks motion. In order to keep its fidelity, the show employs limited animation for its characters, ensuring that much of the time our heroes are seated at a table, or framed tight enough to limit how much animation is need in every frame. Casual viewers might not notice, but animation buffs are bound to clue into just how static the series can be in order to keep its visuals as good as they are.

A battle he can’t possibly hope to win.

Overall Hagane isn’t mind-blowing, but I appreciate its honesty. The humor is amusing, if not laugh out loud funny at times. It’s worth a look in if you’re in the mood for a quick burst of advertising comedy, and at 3-5 minutes a pop per episode you could binge the entire thing within an hour.

“Recommended: Hagane Orchestra’s honesty in its purpose goes a long way towards making it feel like a fun and silly use of your time, likely to crack a smile or two.”

 

Hagane Orchestra is available for streaming via Crunchyroll.com

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