Gunslinger Stratos – the Animation

What’s it about ?

Adaptation of an… arcade third-person-shooter videogame ? Admittedly, based on a idea written on a napkin by Gen Urobuchi and developed by his pals at Nitroplus, so there’s at least an actual high-concept to adapt.


Tohru, our teenage main character, is the archetype of the “don’t rock the boat” philosophy. He knows this futuristic Japan is even more rigged towards the powerful than the current-day, and loves to hammer the nail that sticks out ; so he purposely avoids being at the top of the class so as not to stick out.

Kyouka, his classmate and obvious love-interest, has the opposite viewpoint, and no qualms about excelling. But then, she comes from a powerful family. Anyway, she’s acting very sweet in her attempts to woo him (foiling his attempts to avoid the most popular girl in class), and much more forceful against whoever gets in her path.

Kyouma, her brother, is top among them. How dare this low-class, orphan scum dally with his precious sister ? (Nevermind that she’s the one actually coming onto Tohru.) He’s also pissed off that the guy purposely lost to him in gym class. (Which involves paint-guns and energy swords, because 3PS.) He’s accompanied by a groupie who alternates between supporting him blindly and realizing that hey, wouldn’t it be better for Kyouka to be out of the way ?

By the way, the teacher (what are you wearing, m’am ?) has totally noticed what Tohru is doing. She’s clearly got an agenda, here.

The plot kicks off when Tohru witnesses a computer mirage of crows attacking his little sister (something he’s also been dreaming of)… despite him not having a sister ! The chase scenes leads to Tohru and a following Kyouka to fall into a whole underground city neither of them had a clue was there.

Here, some people are having bloody and spectacular gunfight/parkour battles (which I presume is the meat of the game). Our heroes are stuck in the crossfire with only their harmless PE guns and blades, as well the one gun from a nearby corpse (which thus can’t have been that effective)… Yup, they’re screwed.

… Or they would be, if the guy closing in on them didn’t have an obvious reason to keep them alive. (At least, I assume so ; the cliffhanger ending is WTF-worthy on its own.)

Production Values

Gorgeous. The action sequences are well-animated and a lot of fun, and the characters know how to act even when the focus isn’t on them.

Overall Impression

Well, that was fun. This is the first show this season to have a well-designed killer cliffhanger that makes me actively want to know what the heck happens next, and enough going on in the background to keep me awake even when Tohru’s narration is droning on exposition. It helps that Kyouka’s shtick is quite funny indeed. Actually, I kinda like all the characters in this.

I enjoyed this quite a lot. It’s on a good track to keep me onboard.

via [In Which I Review] New anime, Spring 2015.

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I've been kinda blogging about anime for years... but mostly on forums (such as's Tangency) and other sites. This site is an archive for all that stuff, just in case.

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