Great action and beautiful art direction help get this anime off to a good start.
Hoping to drum up interest for their upcoming RPG Final Fantasy XV, developer Square Enix has partnered with animation studio *A-1 Pictures (Sword Art Online, Your Lie in April) to create Brotherhood: Final Fantasy XV, a five part episodic anime (six if you get a special Collector's Edition) that explains how protagonist Noctis came to be friends with his three traveling companions. The first episode, called Before the Storm, premiered this week (you can view it below). After watching it, I can honestly say this anime is off to a promising start.
Before the Storm opens on a surprisingly violent note. Seeing a flashback of Noctis as a little boy lying in a pool of blood and about to be iced by a monster is disturbing stuff, especially since we haven't seen much blood in Final Fantasy XV thus far. Rattled though I was, I appreciated the way this unnerving opening grabbed my attention. *From there, the episode morphs into a 2D preview of all the activities you can do in the game, which works well for the most part
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