Well, this isn’t a formal review (in that I’ll avoid spoilers if possible so it can be used to judge whether the movie is worth watching). The latest addition to the .hack franchise…with a completely new set of characters. For those unfamiliar with the franchise, it focuses on a fictional MMORPG called The World. If any of you have seen .hack//Quantum, the first thing I noticed different about the movie is that it went back to the more stationary style for The World. In Quantum, you would enter the game and see things depending on your current location in the physical world…the movie goes back to the more traditional form of The World.
The story for the movie is what you would expect from .hack. The lines between the real world and the online world blur and the online world starts to negatively affect the real world. The main character, Yuuki Sora, has to save both worlds despite being a complete amateur when it comes to video games.
Like you would expect from a movie, a lot of the story feels kinda undeveloped and there isn’t much room for actual fighting or in-depth gameplay. Much of the story revolves around people and social interactions. A lot of the story is rather predictable, unfortunately. The ending disappointed me. Usually .hack games feature a more “overcome the evil” sort of ending whereas this one just felt like “get person X to location Y to win.” There wasn’t even a mention of Data Drain (although, I think the security bot used it).
3D graphics in this movie were rather disorienting for me. I didn’t hate them (although the Kite character was kinda pushing it)…I’d say I’m fine with it, but it was definitely a strange way to watch the show. Although it goes better with the .hack games…maybe that was what they were going for with it. In all, I’d say that if you’re interested in this franchise because of the idea of The World, you might be disappointed with the movie…the games are probably your best bet. I’d say the movie is more of a coming-of-age sort of thing with the game as a medium. Personally, I’ve always been a fan of the franchise, so I have no qualms watching it…still waiting for The World to become an actual MMORPG…