Log Horizon is an anime series based on a series of novels written by Mamare Touno and illustrated by Kazuhiro Hara. The anime series is twenty-five episodes long and aired between October 5th 2013 and March 22nd 2014.
The plot of Log Horizon follows Shiroe who is pulled into a MMORPG (massively multiplayer online role playing game) Elder Tale after an update. He and his allies have to learn to cope with the new world.
There are many characters within Log Horizon. The main group are Shiroe, Naotsugu and Akatsuki. The main cast of characters grows as the anime progresses however.
As a strategist, Shiroe possesses incredible intelligence. Naotsugu serves as the muscle of the group, his class one suited for attracting enemy attention and taking hits.
Akatsuki is an assassin. After Shiroe helps her out, she devotes herself to him.
There are many other characters; both adventurers and people of the land. The adventurers are the players, whereas the people of the land are NPCs. It turns out they have their own lives and feel emotions; they are much more complex than your standard MMORPG NPC.
At the beginning of the earlier episodes, there is some exposition to explain the mechanics of Elder Tale. These really help to build the world. There can be quite a bit of exposition during an episode too as the characters explain how a new mechanic works; some might find themselves bored by these. Regardless, it shows that there has been real dedication in the creation of Log Horizon.
There is action throughout the series, but don’t expect to see it every episode. While it is a treat to watch the characters fight together, there are many other problems that Shiroe and his companions have to deal with whilst settling into the world of Elder Tale.
The divide between adventurers and people of the land and dealing with nobility are a couple of obstacles the characters have to overcome. It just shows that not everything has to be resolved with fighting, and makes for quite an enjoyable plot.
One notable moment is the way that an in-game event is handled. Due to all the adventurers being pulled into the world of Elder Tale, a threat goes unchecked. This leads to Shiroe working with the people of the land’s nobility and adventurer’s guilds in order to respond to the threat.
Whilst watching Shiroe put his plans into motion is great, there are other characters who seem to be just as devious. Crusty from the D.D.D. is able to get into Princess Lenessia’s head, which is always enjoyable to watch.
Whilst the older players of Elder Tale are shown to be capable of holding their own, the anime also covers newer players. Siblings Minori and Tohya are first seen as part of a guild that they had been forced to join, but they grow as the series progresses. The same goes for the rest of their group during the training camp.
One notable thing about the characters of Log Horizon is that if a character wears glasses, they probably fit the ‘Scary Shiny Glasses’ trope. Shiroe, Henrietta from the Crescent Moon Alliance and Crusty from D.D.D. all invoke it multiple times throughout the series. It generally means that they have come up with a scheme.
Log Horizon successfully builds a world and has brilliant characters that overcome the challenges of their new lives. Action scenes are fun to watch, and watching the characters play out their schemes is great as well.
The exposition may not suit everyone’s tastes, and those seeking nothing but pure action should look elsewhere. Still, highly recommended.
After the anime concluded, it was revealed that a second season will begin airing in autumn 2014.