From a strictly presentation-focused standpoint, The Night is Short, Walk On Girl every bit as impressive of a film as its name is long. But the thing is, as much as NiSWOG blew me away with its animation, I’m still not quite sure how much I like it as a film on the whole.
As an up-front qualifier to the rest of what I'm about to say, I absolutely adore the Kingdom Hearts series and (most of) its associated games. But here's the rub: I have serious doubts that I would start playing the Kingdom Hearts series if I heard about it for the first time today.
Madoka Magica’s place in the current anime production landscape is a bit tricky to pin down, to be sure. But despite some contradictions in the series’ image, Madoka Magica itself is an outstandingly solid show, owing largely to keeping a strong hold on its core ideals.
Nostalgia is such a weird idea. Parts of it are clearly tied to good memories of your own past, sure - it's the whole reason why people have comfort foods and hold onto familiar objects from their childhood like stuffed animals. Then there's a huge aspect of it that's not even tied to anything specific - even something similar to what we know can draw out that craved feeling of comfort. And, if you hit a sweet spot, you can get the same impression off something that's by all means outside of your own experience.
"Body swap" stories have made the rounds dozens times. Its ilk of well-worn and seemingly-predictable contrivances are what can make subversions so very very fun.
One of those elements that instantly makes a setting feel fleshed-out and well-realized to me is the presence of conlang, or constructed languages. It's dead impressive that the invented "chaos language" in NieR: Automata is custom-made just to deepen the series' often-haunting and sometimes-thrilling soundtrack.
By any objective measure, Robot Alchemic Drive is a garbage game. Yet I love this rough little clunker so very very much.