Mania Grade: B
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- Audio Rating: A
- Video Rating: B
- Packaging Rating: A
- Menus Rating: C
- Extras Rating: N/A
- Age Rating: 12 & Up
- Region: 1 - North America
- Released By: Geneon Entertainment (USA), Inc.
- MSRP: 29.98
- Running time: 75
- Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
- Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
- Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
- Series: Battle Athletes
Battle Athletes OVA Vol. #1
By Sean Connolly
February 06, 2002
Release Date: December 29, 1998
"Sixteen year old Akari Kanzaki whose mother attained the legendary title 'Cosmic Beauty,' finally accomplished her biggest dream: Attending the famous 'University Satellite.'
Although other competitors intimidated her, Akari's natural charm and bravery led her to overcome all her troubles. She meets friends she can trust, and with them she beats persistent bullies in the university. Facing anxiety and her aspirations, her lifetime of battles has just begun!"
Weird, according to this, Akari has already beaten those mean bullies and as already overcome her troubles! So...how can her lifetime of battles have just begun? Ah well. For a quick note, fans of the Battle Athletes Victory TV series should watch episode one again. See that blonde haired girl? Guess who that is. Jessie! Just a fun little fact, but don't be confused. The OAV and TV series are separate universes. My review for Battle Athletes: On your mark... in on the starting blocks!
Just to trip people up who always read my reviews, I'll start with the sound! HA! Of course, the sound is Dolby Digital 2.0 for both tracks and, as usual. It's pretty darn good. It sounds so good, it'll make you wish you never heard the horrid dubbed version on this title. More on that later though. The picture, of course is Pioneer quality. Do you expect anything less out of them? HA!
Now, to the packaging. The cover sports a nice, albeit weird picture of Akari on the cover with a super deformed version of her racing across her body. Pretty cute. The menu on the other hand is not so cute. The menu sports the same picture of Akari on it with little super deformed versions of her being used for the menu cursor. However, there's a little lag from the time you push the button on the controller to move the cursor to the time it actually moves. Like about 1-2 seconds. Ugh. The first time you move it, you'll be saying to yourself "Why won't it move?!" You then proceed to chuck the controller across the room and fling the disc 100+ yards out of your sight. Or maybe not, but it is annoying.
The story of this series is an interesting one. I haven't really seen any anime released here in the U.S. that deal with sports. Besides Ping Pong Club ( like that really deals with sports ). I know this type of show is more common out there in Japan with shows like Slam Dunk, so it's nice to see this type of show here. The character designs are nice with Tanya being the cutest by far. She's a babe. However, the designs can be a draw back. For example, Akari's eyes can sometimes be WAY too big. Even for my tastes, and I thought Sasami from Tenchi Muyo! had big eyes! One thing that bugs me is that the characters themselves are predictable. You can see from a mile away what type of characters they are. But the story is good none-the-less.