10 Swordsmen That are a Cut Above the Rest

Good afternoon everyone! Today’s MCM features my Top 10 Swordsmen. Granted,  I’m pretty sure I’m missing a ton of really good swordsmen that are ultimate classics, but you’ll have to forgive me as I have yet to have seen them! (Ex: Ruroni Kenshin, Bleach). So let’s start the countdown to my ultimate swordsmen!

10. King Bradley (Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood)

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King Bradley’s speed with the blade is incredible, but his overall characterization wasn’t my absolute favorite when it comes to swordsman.

Continue reading “10 Swordsmen That are a Cut Above the Rest”

Thrymheim Dungeon, Jotunheimer

Finally, I’m trying to breathe back some life into my Architectural posts.

This is the last post concluding my SAO themed week. This week I’m looking at Season 2’s Excalibur Arc for it’s architectural aspects. You might have seen my analysis of ALO’s City of Arun in a previous post. ALO is specifically named after one of the races in Norse Mythology, Alfheim, the race of the light fairies.  Other races found in ALO are not as specific to Norse Mythology.

Thrymheimr

After doing some research, I think it’s really interesting how ALO over all is based on Norse Mythology.  I also, like how well it’s been depicted. In the ALO verison of Thrymheim, it is a floating inverted pyramid that is located underneath the base of the world tree, in another world called,Jotunheimer, the land of giants.

Thrymheim_FloorsThrymheim is divided into 4 levels. Each riddled with an array of varying passages and rooms carved out of the ice pyramid. The fourth floor is mostly the boss dungeon.

 

 

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The forming of Thrymheim

 

The mythology of Thrymheim according to ALO:

Once upon a time, the king of the frost giants in Niflheimr, named Thrym, transformed into a wolf and infiltrated Jötunheimr. He then stole the Holy Sword Excalibur, forged by the blacksmith god Völundr, and threw it into Urðr’s Spring at the center of Jötunheimr. The sword severed the thick roots of the World Tree in the spring and, at that moment, Jötunheimr lost the blessings of the World Tree, becoming a desolate world of frost. The water of the Urðr’s Spring froze, as it was pulled up by the shrinking roots, thus forming a bottomless pit, the Great Void, where Urðr’s Spring once was, while the frozen water became a huge mass of ice, with Excalibur stuck at the bottom-most part of the ice mass, and half pierced into the crust of ALfheim.

Thrymheim translates to “Thunder-home,” a castle that was located in the highest mountain peaks of Jotunheim where the snow never melted; it was considered to be one of the few strongholds of the world, and owned by a giant by the name of Thiazi. The castle is the only building in the kingdom of Thrymheim that is made solely out of ice, which is probably why in ALO it’s a crystal pyramid.

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artistic rendering of Thrymheim

From what I’ve read, the entire excalibur arc is based on a particular story found in Norse Mythology. However, SAO has jumbled two stories together and I think this was done purposely in order for the viewers to be able to relate to the content a little more. The story goes as follows:

Story 1:

Thiazi once abducted the goddess Idun, and in Thrymheim, he held her captive, causing the gods to age until her rescue, in turn resulting in the death of Thiazi.

Story 2:

Thrym was king of the jotnar. In one legend, he stole Mjolnir, Thor’s hammer to extort the gods into giving him Freyja as his wife.

Thrym was foiled in his scheme by the gracefulness of Heimdall, the cunning of Loki, and the sheer violence of Thor, who later killed Thrym, his sister, and all of the jotnar kin that had been present at the wedding reception.

In the excalibur arc, we saw that the final boss was Thrym, who was holding Freya captive (like Thiazi to Idun), while also being in possession of Mjolnir. But when Freyja touches Mjolnir, she turns into Thor to kill Thrym. This all happens in Thrymheim, which is not Thrym’s home at all. It’s a bit confusing, but thats the how mixed up the mythologies became!

That about does it. This was relatively short; but don’t worry I’ll be back with even better content! I kind of wanted to just use images for this one.


That concludes unofficial SAO week here at Archi-Anime! As always, thanks for reading! Did you like what you saw? Have any other comments or questions? Also, if you have any think you’d like to me to look into architecturally in an anime I’m more than willing to take suggestions! I’d love to hear from you in the comments below!

[REVIEW] SWORD ART ONLINE: ORDINAL SCALE

Alright guys, I promised I’d write about Ordinal Scale, also this is probably one of my last SAO posts for awhile. As I type this, I literally just came out of the theaters 20 minutes ago. The theater was PACKED FULL. Also, this review probably seems off the cuff because  I wanted to capture everything I was feeling and the thoughts I had of the film as soon as possible without overthinking it too much. I wanted my thoughts to be fresh as possible.

I’m quite pleased with the film, and it was incredibly enjoyable to say the least. I was surprised at how enjoyable this film was. I expected it to be “just okay”, but I was very surprised. Now, I’m going to try my hardest to not fangirl over the film. I don’t find myself to be a huge fangirl of the SAO franchise, but I couldn’t help but love the film. I realize that this isn’t exactly a popular show to a lot of ani-bloggers; and while I don’t think SAO is a perfect masterpiece, I still enjoyed the show and I really enjoyed the movie despite it’s flaws. I’m also the type of person that can laugh at these flaws and not dwell on how horrible it is, because this is all for entertainment and fun!

Bottom line: If you are the slightest bit of an SAO fan, you’ll like it; but if you’ve hated SAO from the beginning then you’d probably hate it; and I’d question your motives for wanting to see the film and further anger yourself.

Also, I’m not sure if any of the below is considered SPOILERY, so proceed with caution! I heavily discuss our character’s and their roles; but I don’t talk about events in exact detail. I may mention one scene but I still don’t talk in full detail about it.

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Continue reading “[REVIEW] SWORD ART ONLINE: ORDINAL SCALE”

Catch the Moment || Sword Art Online: Ordinal Scale

Good evening everyone! I finally got some strength to write some blog posts.

My weekend was a tad rough. I had migraines the entire weekend. And today’s was especially bad. I hadn’t gotten one of these in a long time. *sigh*

Anyways, this week I’m going to be catching Sword Art Online: Ordinal Scale on the only day it’s airing, March 9. I’m dragging my Dad to see it with me. lol. He says he doesn’t mind as long as there’s actions. I’ve dragged him to the Attack on Titan live action films and the Psycho-Pass film. So I’m hoping this will be more action packed than those.

With that being said I’m featuring a song from the film this week. I know I said I would be featuring KnB songs till the Japanese release of that film but I couldn’t pass up this song.

Title:Catch the Moment| Artist: LiSA | Movie: Sword Art Online: Ordinal Scale

That just about does it for this weeks op/ed! Thoughts on the song? On SAO?

How was your guys’ week/weekend? I haven’t gotten a chance to check in and catch up with everyone’s blogs but I’m hoping all of your are doing great!

The City of Arun

Architecture is a rather broad umbrella (it’s a topic I’m probably going to address in another post). Looking at buildings is one step while looking at the context of the building is another. In looking at the context we look at the city, and the urban landscape and how the building interacts with those things. For example, a city skyline, and the way people move around that area of the city are a few things to consider. So with that said, since I looked at a building last week, this week I wanted to look at a city.

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This week, I’m looking at one of Sword Art Online’s various world’s. Specifically ALFheim Online’s (ALO) City of Arun(Alne). Arun is located in the center of ALO at the base of the world tree and is considered to be the captial. It’s the main area for advanced dungeons in the area and acts as the main marketplace in which all races can visit. Arun is so large that it’s divided into 5 parts: North, East, South, West and Central. The World Tree Dome is in the center, while there are dungeons located in the other 4 locations. There are many references to Norse Mythology in ALO, so I started to look into related topics, for example: Norse Architecture, which led me to dig up information about Viking Urban Planning. Aside from your regular towns, Vikings created ring-shaped fortresses known as “trelleborgs”. These circular citadels consisted of outer circular walls that with ditches in front, and four gates at the 4 compass points and 2 axial roads that divided it and linked the gates to one another. Those quadrants were then filled with long-houses that were arranged in a rectangular pattern.

I thought it was interesting to compare the old fortress plan to that to that of Arun. Arun is at the center of the ALO world, and as shown in the photo its enclosed by a mountain range. Although, Arun is supposed to be neutral ground for all the races within the world, I thought it was interesting that it was so well protected from the rest of the nations; but it makes sense, this is the core of the world and it must be protected. Although there are no definitive streets that divide up Arun, it had been divided into the quadrants, and instead of the gates at the each compass point, it was replaced with some of the most dangerous dungeons in the area. It’s quite a contrast for the purposes of these 4 points, in one way it serves as an exit out, wheres in ALO’s world they serve as entrances.

Alne.png The overall composition of Arun reminds me of a chapel that was recently built in Japan. The Ribbon Chapel (by Hiroshi Nakamura & NAP Architects) is a part of a resort in Onimichi, Hiroshima. The wedding chapels’ design intent was to create two sprial staircases that intertwined creating a free-standing structure that symbolized what marriage is: two people that starting on two different paths ultimately converging in on one point in which they unite. The curvature of the building reminds me of the large pieces that come up from the landscape of Arun. The cruves in Arun then slowly twist from a vertical position to a horizontal surface as it merges into the ground. The chapel doesn’t do it as fluidly as Arun does, but the cruving pathway in the back creates the illusion of unfolding into the ground. I feel that the pathway to a destination should reflect some kind of element of the architecture; it could be similar or completely different. Not only does it allow for a cohesive design; but allows for better integration into the surrounding context, which in this case is the landscape.

Overall I think the city of Arun is beautiful as I’m in love with the use of lines and curves, much like a mobius strip. Not to mention it’s pretty whimsical just looking at it. I thought it was pretty cool I was able to find a connection of the Norse mythology used in the world of ALO to that of Viking Urban Planning that was actually used in reality. Research is fun!  That about does it for this Fantasy Friday! I hope you enjoyed this post and look forward to any comments you guys may have!