Hey all you weebs, and today I’m reviewing Fate/Stay Night. A 2004 visual novel developed by Type-Moon. The series has gained quite acclaim overtime, but how does the original VN stand out?
Also I played the Réalta Nua version, so my scores will be based on that. Though, I have played a bit of the original version.
“Shirou Emiya lost his parents in a fire when he was young and was later adopted by a sorceror by the name of Kiritsugu Emiya. Although he was full of admiration for his adopted father and yearns to become an ally of justice, Shirou has limited powers and was unable to become a strong sorceror like his father. That is until one fateful day, he was drawn into the Holy Grail War and had to summon a female “Servant” known as Saber in order to protect himself. It turns out that the Holy Grail War involves a series of battles among powerful sorcerors to fight for the possession of a relic that will grant one’s wishes, the Holy Grail. There are altogether seven “Masters” who can summon their respective “Servants” from different classes known as Saber, Archer, Rider, Berserker, Lancer, Caster and Assasin. These “Servants” have to hide their names in order not to reveal their weaknesses to the enemies. The story revolves around Shirou and his entanglement in the Holy Grail War.”
-Synopsis from ANN
FSN is split into 3 routes, Fate, Unlimited Blade Works, and Heavens Feel. The structure of the game is also different from something like Clannad, where you go through a medium sized common route and than branches into a heroin route. FSN has a very shot common route, and you MUST play the routes in order. Each route is compelling, well-written, and entertaining.
When it comes down to it the characters are what FSN is all about. They’re all so complex and interesting that they are what pull the story.
Shirou Emiya is the protagonist, and a great one at that. He is selfless to a fault. I can honestly get behind what he does because of his past. I’ve heard anime-only fans complain about him, but the way he acts isn’t as bad in the VN and makes much more scene. Though I did get EXCEEDINGLY annoyed when he was being sexist to Saber. I think it’s just really a mix of me being a women and loving Saber myself. Speaking of….
So people may give me flack for this, but Saber is my favorite female character in the series. Many think that she’s overrated, but I don’t see it at all. She’s a very quiet and cold young women, but she does have a more childish side to her. For example, she loves food and stuffed animals, specifically lions.
So, at first, I hated Toosaka. However, after thinking about it for a bit, I eventually warmed up to her. She’s a HUGE tsundere, but unlike most tsunderes now, Toosaka is cunning, funny, and has a reason to act the way she does. I also didn’t get annoyed by her, which is rare for a character like her.
Sakura is Shirou’s kouhai and the main heroin of Heaven’s Feel. Sakura’s also one of my favorite female characters. Her backstory is outright painful, with her being one of the most tragic characters out there. She’s shy most of the time, but can get VERY angry if someone hurts Shirou. I hear many hate her, but I don’t understand. While I still like Saber more, Sakura’s still my 3rd favorite female character.
Archer is the servant of Toosaka. He’s smug, cold, and badass. In all honesty, he’s what got me through UBW. However, he’s really hard to talk about to avoid spoilers
I A M T H E B O N E O F M Y S W O R D .
Illyasviel von Einzbern
Illyasviel, or Illya for short, sadly, doesn’t have a route. But despite this, she’s still a very interesting character. She almost has two sides to her, a kind a cheerful girl, and a cold and brutal magician. Her bad endings are also straight up disturbing.
Kotomine is my favorite character in Fate, and one of my favorite characters ever. He’s cool, elegant, and interesting. He is the priest overlooking the Holy Grail War, and plays a pivotal role in the Heaven’s Feel route. He’s another character I can’t go into due to spoilers, but I love him.
Also this is the best scene in Fate.
The side characters are also very nice. My personal favorites are Rider, Gilgamesh, and Taiga.
There’s no denying it, this game is beautiful. The character sprites, CGs, and backgrounds are all eye candy. Takeshi Takeuchi is a personal favorite artist and all the designs are so complex and detailed (much like the characters). I think Kotomine looks the best, just due to how he looks so elegant and threatening. There are two versions available, there’s the original and Realta Nua. I recommend you play Realta Nua since it has updated graphics.
There are also H-Scenes, but… there’s a huge problem with them. Namely, the art is really good, but the dialogue is HORRIBLE!!! I read the first few and than turned them off, since I can’t stand them.
The ost is great, but, only when it wants to be. The best songs, Lorlei, Emiya, and Church on a Hill, are all rarely play. This makes it better when they do play, but the other songs are meh. Not awful, but not the type to listen to in the same way Ever17′s or Rewrite’s osts are.
However I can praise the voice actors. Almost every single line is voiced, besides the H-Scenes, and every character has a voice.
I loved Fate/Stay Night. While it has it’s faults, it still is a great game. It definitely deserves it’s hype.