Blu-Ray Review: Granblue Fantasy: The Animation – Part 2

Our journey on the sky islands comes to its conclusion in this second release of Granblue Fantasy: The Animation; but what can one expect from MVM Entertainment’s Blu-Ray release of Granblue Fantasy: The Animation – Part 2? Let’s take a look and find out.

Synopsis:

Gran and the crew land in the beautiful Auguste Isles. But they are immediately greeted by foul-smelling slime on the shore and a disquieting mood in town. They meet Eugen, an agent and old acquaintance of Rackam, who explains that the Erste Empire is responsible for Auguste’s current state. That’s when Lyria begins to hear the faint call of a primal beast…

Our View:

The journey continues in this second instalment of the animated Granblue Fantasy series but while the story comes to an end the journey of Gran’s adventure sadly does not. Featuring five episodes, and two bonus OVA episodes, this second instalment opts to provide an ending of sorts to Lyria’s unfortunate circumstances rather than the ‘bigger picture’ of Gran’s own quest. As a result of this the series leaves itself open to a second season and invites viewers to try out the mobile game it is based on instead.

Starting afresh, although in a continuing fashion, the first episode of this second instalment sees our group of skyfarers explorer some ruins in order to secure items for a client of Sierokarte. Unbeknownst to them however a group of treasure hunters are also exploring the island and are looking for the same items. Confrontations aside it’s all fair game for the respective client; but when push comes to shove team-work is needed in order to overcome the obstacles that they find themselves within. It may seem like a stand-a-lone episode but it further expands the world of Granblue Fantasy and the characters that inhabit it; but alas this is just the prelude to the end.

This beginning to the end starts with the relationship between Lyria and Gran growing during a supply run when Gran gives lyria a hairpin. Infatuated with this hairpin Lyria’s emotions run wild and deep in thought but when Gran leaves Lyria’s side momentarily the empire swoop in an abduct Lyria. This abduction, fuelled on by key words from her captor, causes Lyria’s emotions and doubts of bringing destruction to the world to run rampant and thus looses consciousness upon summoning a Leviathan to aid her needs. Gran and the group manage to rescue Lyria from the empire, especially as a result of the Leviathan  causing disruption amongst the empire, but alas even after this successful rescue Lyria remains unwilling to wake up and the Leviathan runs amok within the city of water.

This turning point sees Gran and his crew travel to a new location in order to locate Yggdrasil who is capable of restoring Lyria to her once former self. Personal revelations aside Gran, Lyria and the crew once again defeat the empire and return back to the city of water in order to return the Leviathan to where it belongs; and in doing so notable characters from the Granblue Fantasy game – as well as characters from past episodes – arrive to lend a helping hand in returning balance to the island.  Disregarding Gran’s journey of becoming a skyfarer and locating his father the story within Granblue Fantasy comes full circle for Lyria within this second instalment. That story being one of self-discovery and control over her own emotions and the power she holds within; but alas the overall story of Gran – and the crew he has formed – has yet to be told its completion.

Although this story of Lyria does come to an end the world of Granblue Fantasy is expanded upon with two included OVA episodes – each of which offering a different type of Granblue Fantasy experience. The first OVA episode, told through the perspective of Lyria, is a recap episode that highlights her past adventures with Gran and the crew. The second episode meanwhile is inspired by ‘themed events’ within the game. In this case the theme is Halloween and the crew enjoy themselves during a festival.

The main difference between these OVA episodes and the main series is that Gran is a female character and follows a slightly alternate timeline (or story) to that of the main series. In one perspective the main series is one storyline (or timeline) where Gran is a man while the OVA episodes are another storyline (timeline) where Gran is a female. Regardless these OVA episodes offer a similar experience to that of the main series but in a more streamlined singular story.

Extras:

Unlike the first part of Granblue Fantasy, which featured both textless opening and closing animation, this second instalment does not feature any supplementary content other than the two OVA episodes. These OVA episodes, of which take inspiration from themed events in the Granblue Fantasy mobile game, see a female version of Gran with characters from the main anime series.

The first OVA episode acts a recap of the main series, with the obvious difference of Gran being female, with Lyria remembering past adventures while the second OVA episode takes place during Halloween. Each episode offers the same animation and presentation to that of the main series and sees a stand-a-lone story being told.

Specs:

Media:  BD 50
Region: B
Running Time: 2:45:09
Video: MPEG-4 AVC
Audio: LPCM 2.0 (English & Japanese)
Subtitles: English (White)
Resolution: 1920×1080 (1080p)
Aspect Ratio: 16:9
Frame Rate: 23.976 fps

Overall:

Based upon the Granblue Fantasy mobile game developed by CyGames, Granblue Fantasy: The Animation, is an anime series animated by A-1 Pictures that tells the story of Lyria and her attempt at understanding who she is while travelling from friends and fleeing from the empire that once controlled her.

In the frist part Lyria, and her guardian Katalina, met Gran and Vryn during their escape of the empire and they soon formed a partnership to run from the empire and start their own journey. This second instalment continues this story and sees Lyria and Gran becoming closer to one another. Whether this is romance remains to be seen; but it does see Lyria overcome her doubts to become the person she wants to be – a skyfarer travelling with Gran and being able to summon beasts on command.

Generally release second instalment release of Granblue Fantasy: The Animation wraps up this story of Lyria’s journey quite nicely but at the same time it leaves many questions unanswered – such as Gran’s own journey, Io’s training and what Katalina plans to do with her own desires. Sadly these go unexplored; but we do see each character grow slightly in their own way and begin to trust each other. It would have been great to see these characters explored more but alas that’s not meant to be but it’s still a good story – just not fully conclusive.

This Blu-Ray release of Granblue Fantasy – Part 2 delivers the experience one would expect from a Blu-Ray product and retains the quality found from the first part; with a solid visual experience presented with a consistent English and Japanese audio track. The only disappointment would be the lack of supplementary content, but we do get two bonus OVA episodes, as well as subtitles that occasionally appear at the top of the screen – but this is most likely an Animplex choice. Overall it is a decent release – and I wish we had more; but naturally the first half is required in order to understand this entertaining journey of discovery.

Score: review-stars-4

Granblue Fantasy: The Animation – Part 2 is available on Blu-Ray and DVD within the UK via MVM Entertainment.

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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