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After dying in a tragic traffic accident, 20 year old Haruto Amakawa finds himself opening his eyes in a new world very different than Japan. Now in the body of a young homeless child named Rio, Haruto must learn of this new world and use his previous life’s knowledge to survive in this odd fantasy landscape. Despite saving a princess and showing an aptitude in magical arts, Rio is looked at with disdain which causes his life to be quite challenging. Nevertheless, Rio begins to master swordsman ship, magical abilities and soon rises up to become a powerful young man. Haruto still lingers inside his mind but in this world, Rio has a new goal, new aspirations and new battles to be fought.
Spirit Chronicles had us quite excited here at Honey’s Anime as we always look forward to seeing if a new isekai series can change up the formula a bit. After 12 episodes, we have some thoughts on Spirit Chronicles and would love to share those with you fellow otaku! Does Spirit Chronicles deserve a view or should you pass on this typical isekai tale? Let’s find out in our review of Spirit Chronicles!
Hello Kirito! Er... Rio!
Okay, let’s not beat around the bush, Rio is basically Kirito from Sword Art Online. Aside from having the same look, attitude, OP abilities and voice actor—yes, Yoshitsugu Matsuoka does Rio’s voice—Rio is a carbon copy of our favorite isekai black swordsman. Despite the copy and paste job done on Spirit Chronicles MC, we still like Rio and his attitude works well in this series. Rio gets the attention of many female leads—no shocker there—but you can’t deny his OP abilities make him a truly cool character. We just wish Haruto would have been different in terms of mindset to occasionally make Rio and Haruto clash internally. In our minds, that would have made Rio a completely different person but unfortunately, Spirit Chronicles misses out on a relatively cool idea.
This Isekai is Like the Other Isekai and the Isekai Before That
A major problem with Spirit Chronicles is that it really doesn’t try to be different from the set isekai ideology. MC dies and is reborn in a new world with OP skills and now must explore this new world…it’s an idea that has been done to death in the anime world. Even the few “surprises” Spirit Chronicles tries to show like Haruto’s past “lover” being in this new world too aren’t fleshed out enough and only appear near the final episode. If Spirit Chronicles season 2 airs one day—which we wouldn’t mind seeing—then we feel the story could enter some unique territory. For now, though, don’t expect this isekai to be different than the millions of others before it.
Solid Art and Animation
One element that keeps Spirit Chronicles from being mediocre entirely is the nice fantasy art/animation. While most of the characters—like the tiny professor Celia Claire and the young sister-like Foxkin Latifa—don’t change the game in anime tropes, we still love their design and how well they were animated throughout the show. Rio’s various fights—like the finale with him facing off against soldiers and wyverns—wowed us and utilized some impressive animation feats like stellar lightning effects and solid fighting choreography. Spirit Chronicles looks good and that is always a plus in the world of anime.
A Fun Journey
Spirit Chronicles isn’t an original story, has very unoriginal ideas and isn’t something that warrants a lot of attention. Despite those issues, Spirit Chronicles is a fun anime to just binge. Nothing in Spirit Chronicles is done poorly and that is why it isn’t a bad 12-episode series. Maybe Rio’s goal to find his home is done way too fast and maybe he’s a bit too much like Kirito but we still enjoyed our time seeing Rio rise from young homeless child to a teenager with skills and confidence. We really believe Spirit Chronicles held back some of its best elements—like the final shocking revelation of several Japanese being summoned straight into Rio’s world—but a second season could release and really push Spirit Chronicles to a further level.
Honestly, not every anime that releases will be “anime of the year” material and believing that is just silly. Spirit Chronicles proves that by being a fun series despite the clichéd plot and weak character growth. Despite that, we liked watching Spirit Chronicles weekly and think many isekai fans will love the series for what it is, a fun new story to just sit down and enjoy.
Do you readers have differing opinions on Spirit Chronicles? or do you feel we hit the mark? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below! For even more summer anime reviews, be sure to keep stuck to our Kirito level hive here at Honey’s Anime!