Saturday, 26 January 2013

Robotics;Notes - Episode 14

Chaos has suddenly descended on the world of Robotics;Notes come the end of last week's episode, with a blackout and robots rampaging in Tokyo, and Kona attempting suicide as her emotions run away with her back in Tanegashima.

Clearly, the pressure is on for Furugoori, as she appears to have been framed for the currently occurring rise of the robots (hey, someone should make a video game based around that title) - with a little more digging, it seems as if the culprit is also closer to home than she might like, as whoever has hacked into the systems used to operate all of the domestic robots currently going berserk on the streets has also hooked control of their hack into Kill-Ballad.  Fortuitously, they've also set up a CPU player as the key to controlling the system; defeat it, and you can shut the system down.

Needless to say, there's only one person who can possibly defeat the computer at Kill-Ballad and win the day, and that's Kai - but can he really beat a CPU player who cheats whenever his health gets too low?  The only thing for it seems to be for Kai to make use of his "slow-motion mode", but given that he has no direct control over it activating that mode is a case of easier said than done.  As Kai works his socks off to win this all-important game with lives in Tokyo at stake, we delve a little deeper still into Kona's psyche and what drives her.

I joked last week about the number of false starts this series has had in terms of putting the pedal to the proverbial medal, and after finally feeling hyped up about things from the previous episode I was once again left feeling disappointed by what was served up to us this week.  Having built in so many mechanisms to generate tension by virtue of what was going on in Tokyo, this week's Robotics;Notes somehow managed to squander all of that possible tension entirely, feeling rather leisurely until the closing minutes when it finally got to down to business, however briefly.  The focus on Kona's state of mind and line of thought was a valuable addition to the show thus far, certainly, but it all came at the expense of a feeling that the robot revolution and solar flare that were crippling Tokyo were really of little to no import at all - the episode itself seemed more interested in Kill-Ballad than the dance of destruction going on in the capital, which lent a weirdly disconnected feeling between two scenarios that were intrinsically linked together.  The longer this goes on, the more I begin to suspect that this series is going to be closer in overall quality to Chaos;Head than Steins;Gate...

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