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EP. REVIEW: Deca-Dence


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meiam



Joined: 23 Jun 2013
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2020 1:13 pm Reply with quote
So they're pulling a star ocean 3...

On one side I'd rather they do it early rather than later, on the other side it really make everything feel redundant/pointless. Although it could be cool if eventually everyone learn about it and try their hardest to make sure the world stay interesting because otherwise the dev will pull the plug.
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Engineering Nerd



Joined: 24 Apr 2008
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2020 1:22 pm Reply with quote
meiam wrote:
So they're pulling a star ocean 3...

On one side I'd rather they do it early rather than later, on the other side it really make everything feel redundant/pointless. Although it could be cool if eventually everyone learn about it and try their hardest to make sure the world stay interesting because otherwise the dev will pull the plug.


Or you can look at the brighter side, given the tendency of this series’ main writer, if he is revealing the twist this early, then it would be pretty much a given that there are bigger bombshells awaiting us in the future. Either way, we are in a hell of a wild ride.

The beauty of watching an original anime is the lack of certainty of plot progression, which seem like a gamble, but that also makes the weekly viewing experience much more enjoyable Cool
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7777ale7777



Joined: 13 Nov 2017
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2020 1:54 pm Reply with quote
meiam wrote:
So they're pulling a star ocean 3...

Or a CrossCode also.
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Sisyphusson66



Joined: 04 Dec 2018
Posts: 58
PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2020 3:00 pm Reply with quote
While initially jarring because of the revelations and art design in the second episode, it works for me because there is a clear distinction between the avatar characters and humans, with the former treating this as a game and the latter being unaware that their lives are surveilled and micromanaged. It feels a bit similar to James Cameron's Avatar in some ways.

I have a feeling now that the Gadolls were possibly placed in Eurasia by the corporation, in order to have a sort of breeding ground for their fuel source(?).
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Key
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2020 3:10 pm Reply with quote
I was most reminded of School-Live!, though the foreshadowing in that one was more substantial.

But yeah, despite not being near the "anime Twittersphere" yesterday, I had a similar reaction to episode 2 to what Chris described. I was wavering on whether or not to continue with this title, but I think I have to now.
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Yuvelir



Joined: 06 Jan 2015
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2020 3:35 pm Reply with quote
You know, that whole explanation about Deca-Dence being an amusement park for the aliens (do they even have a physical body?) to enjoy... falls completely apart before the end of the episode. It's not so "amusing" when you have to follow certain directives and perform your role or else. Then again many companies do use gamification as an excuse to try to make their exploitative work conditions as... well, an amusement park.
My final take with Natsume's existence and Kaburagi's resolution is "fight corporate oppression".
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Gina Szanboti



Joined: 03 Aug 2008
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2020 4:56 pm Reply with quote
Yeah, I still have no idea what's going on.

We see a view of the fortress in its force field on a desert - who is watching that? Who's listening to the announcer? It makes no sense for the whole thing to be for the Gears. That would be like setting up a gladiator tournament solely for the gladiators. Now if gladiators were so devoted to gladiating that they pooled their own resources to create Fight Club for themselves, ok, but that's clearly not what's going on here.

I'm also not clear on whether the insects are real now (I guess they'd have to be if they're feeding them to the humans). If the cartoon versions are the "real" Gears, are they digital? If their human avatars are just constructs, how do they fight insects or interact with physical humans? Someone mentioned Avatar - is it like that?

So have these humans been enslaved for generation(s) to run the Deca-Dence by telling them a lie about the outside world? I.e., it's not been wrecked by the insects? Again, who is the audience for this simulation? Is it a simulation? Like I said, I'm lost. I think I'm gonna need a lot of hand-holding for this one... :/
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2020 5:05 pm Reply with quote
^
Honestly, Gina, I've already wondered about many of those same points, and that nothing is clear yet is the point. Should be interesting finding out what level of duplicity we're dealing with here; my guess is that the Gears are not seeing the big picture, either.
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lossthief



Joined: 14 Dec 2012
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2020 5:11 pm Reply with quote
Gina Szanboti wrote:
Yeah, I still have no idea what's going on.

We see a view of the fortress in its force field on a desert - who is watching that? Who's listening to the announcer? It makes no sense for the whole thing to be for the Gears. That would be like setting up a gladiator tournament solely for the gladiators. Now if gladiators were so devoted to gladiating that they pooled their own resources to create Fight Club for themselves, ok, but that's clearly not what's going on here.


While we don't know everything about their culture yet, it seems evident that just from the large population of them that not ALL of the Gears on the ship are players. The whole thing about Top Rankers being celebrities and the like suggests that it's just a big, central part of life on the ship they're on.

Quote:

I'm also not clear on whether the insects are real now (I guess they'd have to be if they're feeding them to the humans). If the cartoon versions are the "real" Gears, are they digital? If their human avatars are just constructs, how do they fight insects or interact with physical humans?


They mention in the cold open that the bodies they use on Earth are physical, yeah, so if you die while playing you essentially have to start over with a new character, like perma-death in a video game.

Quote:

So have these humans been enslaved for generation(s) to run the Deca-Dence by telling them a lie about the outside world? I.e., it's not been wrecked by the insects? Again, who is the audience for this simulation? Is it a simulation? Like I said, I'm lost. I think I'm gonna need a lot of hand-holding for this one... :/


It's not a simulation, no. The humans are physically there and do seem to have been enslaved as a working/supporting class for the Gears. They describe humans as "endangered species" so it would appear there's SOME kind of apocalypse that happened on earth, though it's up in the air if the company behind all this was responsible or just opportunists.
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Tenebrae



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2020 5:23 pm Reply with quote
So far the show hasn't given us any reason to suspect everything is just a simulation on every level. The world is real, the humans inhabiting the Deca-Dence are real. Hence the avatars the Gears use to play their game are flesh-and-blood, probably manufactured to order and controlled remotely. The gears themselves are also physical, since they use that oxy-something that is sourced from outside their living space.

What isn't entirely clear yet is the seeming capitalist dystopia the Gears live in. Too little information so far. Are they some sort of gladiator show intended to keep the rest of population distracted and entertained? What is their origin and what are the goals of the corporation running the whole thing? Answers no doubt will be forthcoming.
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Covnam



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2020 7:41 pm Reply with quote
Great start to a new series. I'm glad I saved the first two eps to watch together to take it all in at once. After the tease at the end of the first episode I never would have guessed we'd see so much laid out on the table (while still leaving a lot to wonder about of course). I was expecting the deeper meaning of these aliens to just be hinted at for several episodes, so it was a nice change to get some much up front.

I hope we find out more about the chips. If removing it kills someone (or at least that's implied, but I guess it could have other affects), you'd think that sudden deaths would be noticed in such a small community.

Really curious to see how involved these aliens are with this monsters. Were they involved from the beginning or later on? Is this going on on other alien planets? etc etc.

Looking forward to finding out more about this world =D
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ThrowMeOut



Joined: 10 Oct 2018
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2020 8:09 pm Reply with quote
I didn't find it confusing at all. Pretty straight forwards for me so far. It's like an inverted Westworld combined with League of Legend competitions.
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Agent355



Joined: 12 Dec 2008
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Location: Crackberry in hand, thumbs at the ready...
PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2020 11:04 pm Reply with quote
My initial knee jerk reaction to Ep 2: “NO!!! I DON’T WANT THIS TO TURN INTO SWORD ART ONLINE!!!” But...to be honest, I’m still too confused to make heads or tails of the whole premise.
So the Heybot-looking characters *are* the aliens (or robots, or alien-robots) that can become players and get human avatars that fight the giant bugs? But there are also actual humans living in the alien built Deca-Dence unaware of their alien overlords? But some humans have chips that can get buggy and they get eliminated? So...are the aliens controlling actual humans via chips, and killing them when they become aware? Didn’t Kaburagi’s evil boss say “humans are the bugs”?
And Natsume is neither a non-playable “real” human or a chipped, alien controlled avatar because they think she died. Her father was investigating the truth about the world right before his accident, maybe he or one of his buddies knew enough to register Natsume as dead to protect her from being chipped? I’m totally speculating here, and I’m not sure how “real” or virtual any layer of reality depicted in Deca-Dence will turn out to be. But...”the avatars are real” “bugs must be eliminated” “humans are the bugs”...I suspect a really nefarious anti-human conspiracy here. The only thing that bothers me is how little it seems to bother Kaburagi —does his Heybot people not see humans as anything but tools to be gamed with? Or is it less of a nefarious usage than I suspect?

In any case, I’m in!
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dm



Joined: 24 Sep 2010
Posts: 558
PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2020 11:11 pm Reply with quote
Shades of School live! and Scrapped Princess.

Maybe a little Terminator, too --- only the machines aren't driven by a hatred of humanity as much as a really aggressive business plan (there's a Charles Stross novel in which humanity's first contact is with a matroshka brain consisting of a solar-system-sized cloud of nanoprocessors running virulent business plans in a competitive marketplace for the star's energy resources).

I'm glad I have no connection to the anime twitterverse, and I'm glad I stopped reading after the review summary on the front page. That twist was a sheer delight.


Last edited by dm on Thu Jul 16, 2020 11:37 pm; edited 1 time in total
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meiam



Joined: 23 Jun 2013
Posts: 2753
PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2020 11:25 pm Reply with quote
Agent355 wrote:
My initial knee jerk reaction to Ep 2: “NO!!! I DON’T WANT THIS TO TURN INTO SWORD ART ONLINE!!!” But...to be honest, I’m still too confused to make heads or tails of the whole premise.
So the Heybot-looking characters *are* the aliens (or robots, or alien-robots) that can become players and get human avatars that fight the giant bugs? But there are also actual humans living in the alien built Deca-Dence unaware of their alien overlords? But some humans have chips that can get buggy and they get eliminated? So...are the aliens controlling actual humans via chips, and killing them when they become aware? Didn’t Kaburagi’s evil boss say “humans are the bugs”?
And Natsume is neither a non-playable “real” human or a chipped, alien controlled avatar because they think she died. Her father was investigating the truth about the world right before his accident, maybe he or one of his buddies knew enough to register Natsume as dead to protect her from being chipped? I’m totally speculating here, and I’m not sure how “real” or virtual any layer of reality depicted in Deca-Dence will turn out to be. But...”the avatars are real” “bugs must be eliminated” “humans are the bugs”...I suspect a really nefarious anti-human conspiracy here. The only thing that bothers me is how little it seems to bother Kaburagi —does his Heybot people not see humans as anything but tools to be gamed with? Or is it less of a nefarious usage than I suspect?

In any case, I’m in!


It seems like there's 3 layers: the alien, the bot and the human (+the avatar). The bot seems to be made by the game creator for entertainment apparently, but there's also alien who can join the game for real (not sure if they make a bot and then an avatar or if they just go straight to avatar). I think it's a bit overcomplicated for little return and the bot middle man portion could have been removed.

I don't think there's any conspiracy against human, the alien probably just showed up on earth once, wipe most people and dropped all the monster (maybe that was like an earlier version of the game). The chip seems to be registered human, and maybe they can buggy.

As far Kaburagi is concern, human are probably just NPC, which he kinda is one too.
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