Treasure Hunter is back after a month long hiatus. (Unlike previous gaps in this column, I’ll be covering the previous month or months as well. Instead of full summaries of special editions, I’ll simply provide a round-up with links.) It wouldn’t be a stretch to call January cold and barren when it comes to releases of special editions, pre-order bonuses, and first print-run editions. The list of video games being release is extremely small, and not a single one made my list for the month. Instead, Aniplex of America is dominating Treasure Hunter with a slew of releases. Enjoy, anime fans!
The Eccentric Family | Release: January 6 | Price: $51.99 | Publisher: NIS America
The Eccentric Family is an adaptation of the manga sharing the same name. This strange tale takes place in modern day Kyoto. Humans live their lives in the city, tanuki roam the earth and tengu take to the skies. The Shimogamo family is special. It is filled with tankui that have the power to transform into anything or anyone. Yasaburo Shimogamo wishes to live a carefree life, but he has way too many responsibilities. He has to take care of his aging tengu master, his twin cousins are constantly getting into trouble, and a dangerous human woman is trying to seduce him. Worse yet, he has to avoid becoming a hot pot at the year-end banquet. The Eccentric Family includes all 13 episodes on blu-ray, a 64-page hardcover art book, rubber key covers (exclusive to the NIS store), and a hardcover slipcase to house everything.
Gurren Lagann Blu-Ray 3 | Release: January 6 | Price: $49.98 | Publisher: Aniplex of America
There isn’t much I can say about Gurren Lagann, given these blu-ray box sets will continue to release for a while. If you’re a fan of Gurren Lagann (and you don’t have the Bandai DVDs), this is an easier way to obtain the series on blu-ray. By that I mean you’ll be paying for GL in chunks instead of putting out hundreds of dollars all at once. This latest set contains episodes 11 through 16, a double-sided poster, and a 16-page art booklet.
Valvrave the Liberator Season 2 | Release: January 20 | Price: $119.98 | Publisher: Aniplex of America
If you’re a longtime reader of Damage Control, you know Alex and I have talked quite a bit about Valvrave the Liberator. The second season on blu-ray is finally here, and like the first set it is a bit pricey. (Personally, I’ll be crossing my fingers for a cheaper DVD release in a year or so.) This set contains the last half of the series (subtitle only), collectable postcards, and a poster illustrated by Katsura Hoshino, the series’ character designer.
Nisekoi: False Love Blu-ray 2 | Release: January 27 | Price: $49.98 | Publisher: Aniplex of America
Nisekoi: False Love is an interesting manga adaptation, I saw it last year and came away slightly unimpressed. It can be best described as a weird take on the concept of Romeo & Juliet. Instead of two teenagers falling in love despite their warring families, we have two teens being forced to date to keep their families from going to war. Raku is the air to a Yakuza family, and Chitoge is the daughter of American gangsters living in Japan. The fathers of both crime families decide their children should date in order to keep an uneasy peace. The problem is Raku and Chitoge don’t like each other and must fake being in love. Worse yet, Chitoge’s overprotective guardians are becoming suspicious of their fake relationship. The second part of Nisekoi contains episodes 6 though 10, ending card pinups, a poster and a box with special illustrations from Nobuhiro Sugiyama to house everything in.
December was a pretty light month in terms of game releases, thanks to the November rush. Considering how empty the month was, I’m surprised more publishers didn’t release titles a few weeks before Christmas. However, there was plenty of anime released in December. There were so many titles were released that buying all of them would cost you a pretty penny. As usual, you can thank (or blame) Aniplex and their premium sets.
I only found two notable limited edition releases for the month. Guilty Gear is still in stock, despite some shipping delays. Kingdom Hearts HD 2.5 sold out pretty quickly, but isn’t hard to find in the second-hand market.
Kingdom Hearts HD 2.5 ReMIX Limited Edition | Release: December 2 | Price: $69.99 – Varies | Publisher: Square Enix
Guilty Gear Xrd -SIGN- Limted Edition | Release: December 16 | Price: $69.99 – 79.99 | Publisher: Aksys
Aniplex of America dominated the month with no less than four releases. Viz managed to squeeze in a title, and FUNimation had a big month with two limited edition releases. That said, both editions of Cowboy Bebop were sold out before the start of December, thanks to limited print runs. If you didn’t grab a copy by late October you were out of luck. If you’re desperate and have some extra cash, Amazon’s Marketplace and eBay has you covered.
Gurren Lagann Blu-ray 2 | Release: December 9 | Price: $49.98 | Publisher: Aniplex of America
Ranma 1/2 Blu-ray 4 | Release: December 9 | Price: $39.99 | Publisher: VIZ Media
Cowboy Bebop FUNimation Exclusive Edition | Release: December 16 | Price: Varies | Publisher: FUNimation
Cowboy Bebop Amazon Exclusive Edition | Release: December 16 | Price: $159 and Up | Publisher: FUNimation
Sword Art Online –Extra Edition- | Release: December 23 | Price: $49.98 | Publisher: Aniplex of America
Kill la Kill Blu-ray 3 | Release: December 23 | Price: $39.98 | Publisher: Aniplex of America
Onimonogatari: Shinobu Time | Release: December 30 | Price: $49.98 | Publisher: Aniplex of America