After this episode, I am THOROUGHLY CONVINCED that No Game No Life is the best of the best of the spring season. This anime is reaffirming my lost faith in the game anime genre and it’s the first time in a long time where there was so much suspense and so much action that I lost track of the minutes of the episode until the credits cut me out of the game world. I am just DYING to see the next episode now.
Episode 3 begins with Kurami Zell’s coronation. Sora, Shiro and Stephanie crash the coronation and raise suspicions about Kurami’s political allegiances with the Elven race. LOVE the objection scene as an homage to the Phoenix Wright objection animation. Shiro figures out where the Elf is hiding in the crowd and Kurami states that she will choose a game where cheating isn’t possible. Stephanie Dola, as cute as she is, is just really dense and naïve. But her airheaded questions help fill in some of the blanks for the audience because Shiro and Sora are almost always thinking and deducing the same thing. Sora explains the problems with Imanity’s King selection process. Kurami approaches the group to tell them that she is working with the elves in order to assure Imanity’s safety. WOW, as if they anyone would fall for Kurami’s act…. Well, Steph did. Sora and Shiro absolutely refuse to withdraw from the game. After all, BLANK NEVER LOSES.
“Chess is no different from tic-tac-toe…” – Shiro
Sora and Shiro, as one player, face off against Kurami in a game of giant three dimensional chess. However, these chess pieces have wills of their own. The game of chess begins rather normally, Shiro’s pieces move accordingly t the rules, however, the pieces of the game reflect the player’s charisma, leadership and abilities as King. Although Shiro is an absolute genius, because the game’s pieces have their own will, they’ll refuse to move into a place where they know they’ll be killed. Therefore, Shiro can’t possible sacrifice her own pieces and it’s because of these strange rules that Shiro cracks because she can foresee her own loss. However, Sora hugs her sister and swaps in for her…. I wondered how Sora could possibly do better than Shiro, but Sora calls out to his soldiers on the game board and he raises their morale and inspire them to fight. The pieces literally hop off their game piece and it becomes a strategy game rather than a chess game. NOW THAT’S THINKING OUT OF THE BOX.
Kurami’s shocked that she doesn’t even get a turn but Sora call her out on the art of war. What fool king waits for his enemy to “take a turn?” HAHAHA. SOoa presents Shiro as her Queen, FIGHT FOR CUTENESS!!! CUTE MAKES RIGHT! Sora even reveals that Kurami has been using magic to control her pieces but no king has ever found victory through oppression. DAMN THIS GAME GETS INTENSE.
On Kurami’s end, she’s still convinced that there’s another race helping Sora and Shiro. Kurami plays her trump card. By coming into contact with an enemy piece, Sora and Shiro’s pieces will become brainwashed. Kurami’s forces advance and the Black Queen is about to take the White King’s head. Sora’s last attempt to save his king is to throw himself onto the game board and declare his love for the Queen in order to move her to change sides. She becomes another white queen and it looks like even Sora’s experience in romance simulation games comes in handy. Kurami commands her knight to slay the traitor queen but the knight cannot possibly turn on his Queen. He defaults and becomes white as well. Sora assigns his sister to command the army and Sora claims that they can win WITHOUT FIGHTING.
I really like how the games function and work in this world. The light novelist really broke ALL THE RULES when it comes to this game world and the animation makes it all the more epic. I love seeing Sora and Shiro kick ass as Blank. Because they were pros in the regular world, the game world has really pushed and challenged their gaming abilities to the max. Naturally in the previews we do see Sora and Shiro take the crown but I’m more interested in how the final showdown is going to take place. It’s pretty innovative and amazing to see how one game of chess could draw on so many different types of games. To win in this game world you really need to have a well-rounded and creative mind when it comes to gaming. Absolutely fantastic episode, pacing was great, animation was on par, dialogue was amazing. NEED EPISODE 4 NOW!!!
What are you pondering today?