A few years back, I did a basic summary of Touhou and Vocaloid to the newer audiences for the site. One can never too late to hop aboard and get introduced to two of the largest multi-media projects the two represent so other than my bad writing from years ago, I still consider it an informative post to newcomers.
So judging from the title, one can expect me to clarify another rising multi-media fad: What exactly is Kantai Collection? Since I’m an image board lurker who happens to see a lot of pretty images every day, I encountered a humongous increase in these characters who appear in this strange media rookie that is Kantai Collection.
If you want the extremely shortened version, the entire thing can be summarized in two words: Moe Battleships
Those who wish to know more, look no further.
Following the success of adding girls/turning inanimate objects into girls, Japan has decided to turn yet another sort of mechnical war machine into cute anime girls. As I’ve minimally addressed above, the game features girls based off Japan’s fleet of ships. Essentially it’s Strike Witches only with characters who wear some clothes.
To my limited knowledge Kantai Collection is a free online card game that was made by Kadokawa Games. They’re more famous for their manga and magazine publishing but of course, they work on games as well. The key word being Card-game (or free, for some of you). Because I haven’t played the game yet (will probably try to sooner or later), I really can’t go into too much depth. With cards involved however, I can imagine some actual tactical gameplay style or just facerolling once you get extremely overpowered cards. Of course, finding said overpowered cards is a hassle all on its own. But the other main draw for this game is basically what made Touhou popular: Lots of girls
However unlike Touhou, the ingame art is pretty decent compared to how the beer connoisseur ZUN started off his solo project. The game starts of with you becoming the new “Admiral” of this literal fleet of girl. You have many options to consider and you must choose wisely to wage war and earn victory. Classes like Carriers, Battleships, Destroyers, Cruisers, Submarines, and the likes provide basic firepower to much more complicated strategies. Alluding to a particular class’s attributes, characters have their own “traits”. Heavy ships are usually bustier than their lighter counterparts. Similar ships have usually the same style of clothing and to put it simply: You can probably find out which ships are related through their apparel. A multitude of artists took part in the official art and there’s around 150 girls in the game’s files. Voice acting is present within the game with a voice actor representing a class of ships.
Other than combat, there’s customization and upgrading involved. Ranking up cards more or less “evolve” and gain new equipment. Since the girls are supposed to be ships, repairing and building new stuff is required to “upgrade” since you know ships can’t get new guns out of thin air. Like traditional/micromanagement type RPG’s, you go into maps/sectors to fight enemies, gain experience and to maintain ships and strengthening others. Much like TF2, new weapons or even girls can be either be recieved as a drop or crafted through items. When you think about it, it’s essentially a web-browser RPG game, only with tons and tons of resources backing it up.
This F2P game currently has a quickly expanding fan/playerbase and is sure to gain more with the planned releases of light novels, mangas, and even an anime series. While I have no idea what the hell it’s going to cover and which characters it’s going to star, I can only imagine it will draw an even larger audiences.
EDIT: This post turned out a bit more popular than I thought it would. Looking back at this at the moment, I forgot to mention about accessing the game. Since the server only recognizes Japanese IP, one must proxy to actually play it. Coupled with the fact that the playerbase has swelled since launch and it works like a lottery so good luck getting an account in the first place.