DVD Review: Chrome Shelled Regios – Part 2

 

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The final instalment into the apocalyptic world of Chrome Shelled Regios is here, but what did we think of this second instalment and the events that transpired? Find out in our DVD Review of Chrome Shelled Regios – Part 2

Synopsis:

The world of tomorrow is an arid wasteland; a forsaken place where nomadic communities take shelter within mobile, domed cities. Massive, mutant Contaminoid monsters swarm the planet’s desolate surface, and the lack of resources fuels constant conflict between cities.

In this bleak future, mysterious young Layfon struggles to escape his violent past. Unfortunately, his former life might be impossible to hide after he’s forced to enroll at the military academy – his special powers are clearly stronger than those of his comrades. As he joins his fellow student soldiers in the desperate battle against the Contaminoid scourge, Layfon must fight to keep the origins of his enhanced abilities a secret, because the truth could tear his team apart.

Our View:

With the first half of Chrome Shelled Regios leaving me entertained, but confused, on where the story was heading it was left up to this second half to decide what the end result will be, and unexpectedly I find myself still confused at what exactly transpired. Filler and harem styled episodes have been left out and replaced with a deeper storyline and progressive action, but at the same time it feels like I’ve missed something completely important, even when I haven’t, but this aside it’s still a fun series to watch.

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Featuring 12 episodes across two DVD discs, Chrome Shelled Regios – Part 2 resumes the story where the first half left off, with Haia asking Gorneo if he knows anything about the fallen ones. A clear cut explanation into what a ‘fallen’ isn’t exactly provided until later on, but from my understanding the fallen are artificial spirits with enormous power, a power which is desired by people who want to become stronger. What’s interesting is that these ‘fallen’ were previously the artificial spirits which controlled the regios cities, such as the spirit of Zuellni, but after a city is destroyed the spirit leaves its confines and wanders around looking for a new host. This is what happened to Gandoweria, the city which was destroyed by contamonoids, and the spirit which previously resided in it is now looking for a new host.

This new host eventually turns out to be Dinn, the captain of the 10th Platoon and during a training battle Layfon uncovers this fact, but when Dinn is defeated by Layfon the fallen spirit moves onto find a new host – this time the spirit of Zuellni itself. With two spirits attempting for control the city becomes defenceless and when contamonoids start attacking the problem only gets worse and as such the whole military arts school is put on stand-by from a mass confrontation with Contamonoids. This is only a prelude of things to come, as when Zuellni, Nina and the fallen disappear from within the city a full-scale search goes off and with the city unable to move it’s a fight for survival until Zuellni and Nina, but Nina now has her own problems as the fallen has chosen her as its new host.

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While it may not be obvious the fallen is the topic of the series, and as such this is what the previous instalment was building up to – subconsciously at least. Because of this shift in perspective this second half is slightly different to the previous instalment, for instance in this second half it’s more about uncovering the truth surrounding the fallen and defending the city.

Extras:

Just like the first half of Chrome Shelled Regios only a handful of additional content is included, namely the inclusion of a text less opening in addition to a of text less closing and trailers.

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The trend of having the Japanese voice actors singing the ending song continues on this second instalment, as while both the original text less opening and closing songs are included there is also two versions of the ending song which features the Japanese voices actors for Leerin and Mayshen singing the song. The ending song may not be ‘spectacular’ but it is interesting to see voice actors being used to sing the song, as this doesn’t happen that often.

The final selection of extra content is trailers for three other anime releases, each of which are normal-movie-styled trailers as opposed to just the opening song. The trailers include FLCL, Shangri-La and Rahxephon with both FLCL & Shangri-La currently available on DVD by MVM Entertainment, with RahXephon also available by 101 Films.

Specs:

Media: DVD 9 x2
Region: 2
Running Time: 2:16:12 (Disc 1), 2:16:21 (Disc 2)
Video: MPEG-2
Audio: Dolby Digital 5.1 448kbps (English), Dolby Digital 2.0 224kbps (Japanese)
Subtitles: English (Yellow)
Resolution: 720 x 576 (576i)
Aspect Ratio: 16:9 Widescreen
Frame Rate: 25 fps

Overall:

Chrome Shelled Regios is different what to I was initially expecting, my initial impression was that it was going to be a series that sees a inhabitants of a city defend against constant alien monsters (contamonoids). Instead what we get is an over-complicated story of a man (Layfon) saving his friends from a rampant spirit, while at the same time defeating other users who want to use the power for their own selfish desires. The progression of the story isn’t difficult to understand, as each episode moves along quite swiftly informatively, it’s just the inclusion of flashback characters and the real motives of the heaven’s blade that I find weren’t explained effectively, as even after watching all of the episodes I still don’t know the events with Saya were shown.

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Despite its ‘entertaining’ action and steady progression of the story I found myself overly disappointed with the series and that’s mostly because it felt unfinished and rushed. The first half of the series had a nice mixture of genres, although not an obvious destination meanwhile this second half focuses heavily on the Fallen and throws in some self-ish battles along the way. These battles are great, some of my personal highlights of the series, but they are over too quickly and don’t seem to add any real value to the story that’s being told – the same can be said for these ‘flashbacks’ – It features characters with insane abilities, Saya for instance, and then at the end of the series Saya appears in the ‘current world’ with no real explanation. It’s just confusing and disappointing as after sitting through 8 hours of anime you’d expect some clarification of what transpired.

The same can be said for the additional content, as the only extras are text less songs and a few trailers for other MVM Entertainment releases. The text less songs do offer something different, as certain songs have added vocals by the Japanese voice actors from the show, but what’s disappointing is that their isn’t a text less ending for the final episode, an episode which doesn’t use an ending animation but instead new sequences that continue the storyline (i.e. what happened after the battle). Although nothing much happens it would have been nice to view it without the credits listed. Obviously this is not MVM (or Madman Entertainments) fault, but its still a disappointment. In terms of visual and audio quality everything remains consistent with the previous instalment, and a nice 5.1 English audio track provides some nice explosive moments for those with home cinema kits.

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Basically my experience from the episodes contained within Chrome Shelled Regios – Part 2 is that it was an entertaining and action packed experience, but an explanation into some aspects of the storyline (Flashbacks, Saya, Heaven’s Blade) would have greatly helped. Those who like a mixture of action, sword style battles and complex developing plot will easily enjoy what Chrome Shelled Regios – Part 2 has to offer, but if you’re looking for a relatively easy-to-follow storyline then I’d recommend looking elsewhere.

Score: review-stars-3

Chrome Shelled Regios – Part 2 will be available on DVD from the 19 May 2014.

About Scott Emsen
Scott is the Founder and Executive Editor of AnimeBlurayUK but in the past he has worked at ZOMGPlay, Rice Digital and Funstock and was once a Community Moderator for the Nokia N-Gage forums. Based in the UK, he loves anything related to Games & Anime and in In his spare time you'll mostly find him playing on one of his many gaming consoles; namely the PS Vita, PS4 or Xbox One.

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