The charm of semi-canon mechs

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False Prophet
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The charm of semi-canon mechs

Post by False Prophet » Fri Mar 17, 2017 12:23 pm

Why is the mecha fandom is in love with semi-canon - a.k.a originated from spin-offs - machine? Is it because the artists are free to express their original ideas (such as with Getter Robo mangas)? Or is it because there is always little screen time for those machines and as such they become more mysterious and attractive?

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MythSearcher
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Re: The charm of semi-canon mechs

Post by MythSearcher » Sat Mar 18, 2017 6:04 am

My view is that the liked ones are better designed ones.
Simply put, not all of these machines are loved by the fandom, actually, only a small portion of it are well known and discussed and will get votes in "favourite" polls.
Those loved by the fandom are the ones that get good designs, with decent plots or at least nice and cool shots.
They will likely be successful on their own, and will do better when standing on the shoulders of giants.
Usually, they also fill some of the gap people felt in the main story, some type of "completing the series", "what could have been", "how it came to be".

With the emptiness/loneness people feel after a series is completed, filling in that particular feeling with related ,similar and elaborated story/characters works really well.

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Arsarcana
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Re: The charm of semi-canon mechs

Post by Arsarcana » Sat Mar 18, 2017 7:46 pm

Yeah. For example, Code Geass teased us with the prospect of up to a dozen Arthurian-themed Knightmares operated by the Rounds but between unseen members and ones that didn't get to show off their machines we got less than half that number, until side material filled a gap or two in for us. Plus more generally, side designs can just be plain fun and people can like them for that reason alone even if they don't have any kind of gap-filling purpose. There's no one reason for it.

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Kuruni
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Re: The charm of semi-canon mechs

Post by Kuruni » Sat Mar 18, 2017 11:35 pm

I like mech because it's cool. canon status has nothing to does with it.

If anything, it's likely that non-animate mech sometime has more detail (since the designer doesn't has to consider the cost of animating or toy producing) or gimmick that simply won't "sell" on screen.

Well, I'll admit that there's also somewhat childish reason about it too. Semi-canon source is more obscure, and it seem cool when people ask you what the hell are you talking about. Better if someone tell you "I never aware that this exist, thank you". Even better if soemone call it BS and you can back it up (yeah, I sound like a jerk here).
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False Prophet
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Re: The charm of semi-canon mechs

Post by False Prophet » Mon Mar 20, 2017 11:05 am

Hmm... So the "gap-filling" effect does play some role in this matter. So, in that logic, can I ask this: Do you like a semi-official design with fleshed-out story better, or something that does not?

I do think that thanks to Ark Performance, the semi-cannon designs in Gundam are gaining traction, so the former may be the case.

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YokozunaBulldozer
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Re: The charm of semi-canon mechs

Post by YokozunaBulldozer » Mon Mar 20, 2017 5:19 pm

If it manages to have a deep background story that is cool too but doesn't have to necessarily.
Mostly I like them from a design standpoint because I feel like I am getting a snapshot of the designer's creative process and also they show what could have been if they wanted to such as Full Armor something something, etc.
Also I am a sucker for prototype designs no matter how ugly or beautiful they may be.
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MythSearcher
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Re: The charm of semi-canon mechs

Post by MythSearcher » Thu Mar 23, 2017 11:25 am

False Prophet wrote:
Mon Mar 20, 2017 11:05 am
Hmm... So the "gap-filling" effect does play some role in this matter. So, in that logic, can I ask this: Do you like a semi-official design with fleshed-out story better, or something that does not?

I do think that thanks to Ark Performance, the semi-cannon designs in Gundam are gaining traction, so the former may be the case.
The problem here is that Ark Performance's art is just that good in mecha.
They draw most designs really well, actually, their "Gihren Assassination Attempt" series basically showed anime mechas (My take is all official material is canon, doesn't matter if it is anime or not, and Galbaldi Alpha is the only non-anime mecha I can remember) and they just look much better.
Similar to Katoki's redesigns, it is not really about other things, but just simply good presentation and art.
Comparatively, hand drawn anime has that very limit to it. Even with Katoki's designs, novel Unicorn is simply better looking than anime Unicorn, you simiply can't have the level of details in an anime which you need frames after frames drawn by a dozen of animators that work like factory workers(and earn less) compared to Katoki's still frame one-off designer/illustrator artwork.
Manga is similar, you don't need a lot of frames, one single picture tells of a lot more than it does in anime.
Another good example will be Five Star Story. Nagano Mamoru's designs are nigh impossible to animate without a great loss of details, Tomino actually asked if Nagano wanted to kill the animators (by overwhelming them with detail work) with those designs.

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