I want to feel your warmth.
- Episodes : 12
- Genre : Adventure, Fantasy, Josei, Romance
- Airing Date : Oct. 2017 - Dec. 2017
- Studios : M.S.C.
Code: Realize: Sousei no Himegimi Introduction and Story (Spoilers)
Code: Realize: Sousei no Himegimi was originally an otome game developed by Otomate and was published by Aksys Games for the PlayStation Vita. It revolves around Cardia Beckford, who secludes herself in a mansion because of her unique condition. The show starts with Cardia being captured by the British Army. Along the way, she is rescued by Arséne Lupin and his companion Impey Barbicane. The two men take Cardia to their hideout, where she meets Victor Frankenstein and Saint-Germain. It is revealed to her that the heart that keeps her alive is the “Horologium”. It is the reason why she has poison in her body, thus melting everything that she touches.
As she stays with Lupin and company, she faces the organization, Twilight, and even meets Abraham Van Helsing and Delacroix II, who have their own motives for staying with Lupin’s group. Lupin learns some information about twilight’s leader, Finis, and prepares to come up with a strategy to catch him. They manage to infiltrate the train thanks to their well-planned strategy. However, it is all a trap to capture Cardia. All of our heroes manage to escape, but Cardia is haunted by the fact that Finis is her brother.
After the incident, Lupin’s gang are made into criminals, being accused as terrorist bombers. Victor feels guilty about this and heads out to talk to the Queen and ask for a pardon. Victor reveals to Cardia that he was formerly the head royal alchemist that aimed to create the Philosopher's Stone. He failed to make the famous stone but he accidentally made the Zicterium that killed off the whole vampire clan. Because of his dangerous invention, he decided to leave the royal palace; so Cardia’s father, Isaac Beckford, takes over the project and makes the Horologium. They are attacked by Twilight while talking, but are saved by Lupin and company. They manage to reach the Queen and all charges against Lupin’s gang are revoked, thanks to Victor’s negotiation skills.
The gang then decides to win the airship race to get ahold of Isaac’s writings about his experiments. They manage to win and go to Isaac’s laboratory which is revealed in the his writings. Once they reach the laboratory, Cardia finds out that she is a Homunculus. Worrying about her wellbeing, the gang heads back to the mansion. While everyone is resting, Cardia decides to go back to her old home to obtain more answers about herself. Along the way, she begins to remember her past regarding Elaine and Etty. When she finally reaches her old home, she finds a letter addressed to her from Isaac. The villagers find out that Cardia is back in their village and decide to attack her. She is saved by Lupin and her issue with Etty is resolved.
They find out that Isaac’s terrorist plan is called Code: Realize and that the headquarters are located in the basement of St. Paul's Cathedral. Lupin and Cardia rush to go to the Cathedral while Finis wreaks havoc in the city of London to start the terrorist plan. Upon reaching London, Lupin and Cardia save the Queen but face Finis when they reach the London Bridge. Lupin is badly injured after defending Cardia, but everyone escapes in the nick of time thanks to Impey and company. Amidst the chaos, Saint-Germain is revealed to be a member of IDEA, which aims to eliminate things that will threaten history, and his current mission is to eliminate Cardia, who is the primary key to Code: Realize. But he can’t proceed with his mission since he already feels close to Cardia. Everyone decides to make preparations while waiting for Lupin to recover to stop Finis’ terrorist attack.
On the day of the attack, everyone manages to reach the basement of St. Paul's Cathedral and meets Finis once again, and everything about Code: Realize’s true purpose is revealed to the whole gang. It is also revealed that the glowing globe behind Finis is Isaac. Aiming to destroy the globe, Cardia is kidnapped by Finis and goes to the Nautilus to finalize the plan. Wanting to have Cardia back, Lupin decides to go to Nautilus with the help of his friends.
In the Nautilus, the gang successfully destroys the globe, which holds Isaac, while Lupin manages to save his beloved from it. Unfortunately for Cardia, she didn’t manage to save Finis. While escaping, Cardia loses all of the remaining poison in her body with a touch of Lupin’s hand. They confess their love to one another and make a promise to be with each other forever. Lupin and Cardia escape the Nautilus and get married in the company of close friends, sharing a sweet kiss for the final shot in the anime.
What We Liked About Code: Realize: Sousei no Himegimi
Code: Realize is easy to follow and very entertaining, especially if you are a fan of this type of genre. Unlike other otome games that are adapted into anime, Code: Realize has more substance to it than meets the eye. The story is certainly intriguing, as it delves deeper and deeper into the plot. The world building itself is fascinating giving the show its own artistic style and unique vibe.
One thing to love about Code: Realize is the ever-beautiful heroine of the show, Cardia. While Cardia starts off as a bland and dull character, like many otome heroines out there, she begins to blossom wonderfully as the show progresses. Cardia has the initiative to learn new things around her and she can even kick ass if she is allowed to. Although she sometimes appears to be confused and lost in her current situation, it doesn’t really take time for her to realize the problem and can act immediately without someone helping her. Cardia may not be badass enough to some, but the people who know what a staple otome heroine is will immediately know that Cardia somewhat breaks away from the norm.
Another thing that we like about the show is the voice acting; particularly, Saori Hayami and Yuki Kaji. Saori Hayami is the voice of Cardia. She did a fantastic job of voicing our heroine, as she depicts Cardia’s personality and character amazingly. You can definitely see the change in Cardia from being a cold and emotionless girl to a girl with her own identity. Yuki Kaji, on the other hand, is simply phenomenal! Finis isn’t really a likable character to begin with since he’s creepy and crazy in the head, but Yuki Kaji undoubtedly captured that perfectly! You will surely get goosebumps, like how the characters of Code: Realize felt during Finis’ insane monologues during the show.
Other than that, the show also has its own sweet and hilarious moments to look out for. The anime follows a single route, so to those fans who love the mysterious thief, you’re in for a treat!
As stated earlier, Code: Realize was originally a game full of engaging plot-lines and an awesome heroine. It explores the secrets that surround Cardia as she begins to learn how warm human interactions are through her trusty companions. Cardia is somewhat different from the other otome heroines out there; however, we cannot deny the fact that the anime only showed a shallow interpretation of her. This also applies to the other characters of Code: Realize, as they are equally interesting as Cardia but were kind of left out most of the time through the whole show.
The good thing about the anime is that they followed a single route, particularly Arsène Lupin’s route, which is a good choice since his route explains a lot of Cardia’s whole purpose and existence. From the first episode alone, one can immediately figure out that Cardia will end up with him. This is a good decision to make because, with this, we can definitely focus on one potential love interest and can have an ending to the show without scratching our heads wondering why she didn’t choose anyone. It’s a nice strategy because, in this way, Code: Realize can draw a bunch of new fans to the franchise without spoiling anything big about the other remaining love interests. While it is a great idea to adapt Code: Realize into an anime, there is also a lot of downsides to this. The obvious one is that the other remaining love interests are not fully developed and explored in the anime. They remain as decorations in the show and will only show up if they are needed.
If you think that Code: Realize will change people’s perception about otome games being adapted into anime in a positive way, unfortunately, this isn’t it. It’s true that Code: Realize has a good story to tell with nice looking characters, but the adaptation also has its flaws, which we will be discussing down below.
1. Interesting premise
We’ve all seen countless otome heroines have dark pasts and a unique power of their own. However, what captures its viewers is Cardia’s story. Unlike other otome games that were adapted into an anime, Code: Realize tells a much darker tale. It’s not always rainbows and butterflies and it does show some dark themes compared to shoujo otome titles. Another thing to take note of is the unique worldbuilding of the show. While it isn’t elaborated enough in the anime, the steampunk setting is quite new in regards to this type of genre. It’s a perfect setting that matches Cardia’s and her potential love interests’ stories. Speaking of potential love interests, most characters are based on famous literary characters. It’s quite obvious from their names alone, which is funny, since most of them don’t really act like the characters that they were based on; with the exception of Lupin, Van, and Herlock Sholmès.
2. Large cast of good-looking characters
Since Code: Realize is based on a famous otome game, viewers are to expect that almost every character in the show is gorgeous and attractive. This also includes the villains, of course. The characters retain their excellent designs from the game, and honestly speaking, it’s so good to see them being animated! Cardia’s looks and designs are on point and even Lupin’s dashing thief costume makes him look fabulous. Van, Saint-Germain, and Herlock Sholmès give off the mysterious vibe to the viewers. We also have Sisi and Delacroix II for those fans who love cute and adorable character designs. We believe that you will enjoy watching Code: Realize if you love and appreciate beautiful characters overall.
1. Poor pacing and execution
First, let’s start with the pacing. The pacing during the earlier episodes was just right, albeit with the extreme info dumping here and there. But after two or three episodes, things start to get a little bit slow. Nothing is really happening and we are only given some hints and glimpses of the overall problem in the story. The episodes are simply fillers to get to know some side characters. Then suddenly, somewhere in the middle, things start to go way too fast. There’s really no build-up in the revelation, and everything is straight to the point, making the show less striking to the viewers.
Now about the execution, we’ve said that the anime follows a single route which is Arsène Lupin’s route. Although the drawbacks of adapting his route are the character development of Cardia’s other potential love interests, it’s a good move. Unfortunately, they didn’t execute his story all too well. Remember the fillers that we’ve have been talking about? They could have used those episodes to tell Cardia and Lupin’s story in an interesting manner instead of focusing on Van, Delacroix II, and Frankenstein’s story. Code: Realize even tried to put Impey and Saint-Germain’s story somewhere near the end of the anime, but since it was late in the show, we didn’t feel anything for them at all; unless, of course, you know them already from the game.
We’re are not saying that the show shouldn’t have told the backstories of said characters, but they could have at least introduced them very briefly and focused more on Cardia and Lupin’s development. Trying to adapt Lupin’s route to a twelve-episode anime is hard enough, even more so when they decided to include other characters’ stories. This is why Lupin’s story in the anime is only shown to us halfheartedly, and even Cardia’s big revelation of who and what she really is felt very stale and not surprising anymore. They didn’t even show how truly badass Cardia is and kind of made her a regular damsel-in-distress throughout the show. Overall, Code: Realize has tons of interesting things that it can offer to its viewers, but it didn't really manage to do that since the show tried to put a lot of things in the anime instead of focusing on the most important parts.
2. We’ve all seen it before
Code: Realize doesn’t really offer something new to its viewers. Everyone loves Cardia even though they don’t fully know her yet. Every male character near Cardia has their own cheesy lines to say and their personalities are pretty generic. One thing that is both funny and kind of ridiculous that we’ve seen on the show, is the endless deus ex machina and the plot conveniences. Everything happens too conveniently at the right time to be called just a coincidence; and although our protagonists can’t find a way out from their current predicament, suddenly everything is solved because of the power of love, friendship, and teamwork. Code: Realize is a nice adventure fantasy game even though it has tons of clichès here and there. Sadly, the anime only captured the clichès part and didn’t really deliver the adventure fantasy that the viewers were expecting.
Another thing that we have noticed is the animation. During the early episodes of Code: Realize, the animation and graphics were excellently well done. While it isn’t the most fluidly animated show out there, it is still pleasant to look at. But starting from the third episode up until the end, everything goes downhill. The art is inconsistent; it’s like the animators gave up halfway and just decided to give a better animation to Cardia’s and Lupin’s important scenes.
Also, if you pay close attention to some scenes, there is some copy-pasting going on. Some were obviously reused from the other episodes without bothering to at least change them a bit. Reusing some scenes is understandable if they are using them as flashbacks or maybe to show that the characters are remembering something, but recycling the scenes again and again in an entirely different situation isn’t really lovely to look at. And those filters! The filters were a nice touch, giving certain scenes that dreamy look and vibe. But they were a bit too much... Maybe they could have lessened those a little bit so that it wouldn’t be too hard on the eyes.
The anime pales in comparison to the game; however, if you want a brief introduction to Code: Realize, then starting the anime is a good thing for you. Like other series that weren’t great but were recognized by other viewers, Code: Realize still manages to give enjoyable entertainment to its fans. We can’t really say that it’s good, since it has a lot of flaws, but we really can’t say that it’s bad either, since it is fascinating and interesting as well. It’s a decent show with a fairly sweet ending.
What are your thoughts about Code: Realize? Have you already watched it? or are you planning to? Always stay tuned to Honey’s Anime! We hope to see you in the next article! Now signing off~