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Fate Series – My Perspective

Fate Stay Night is not my first visual novel that I read. I initially follow the story from the very first adaption of anime Fate Stay Night. The premise of Fate Stay Night is a battle royale between mage, who can use magic obviously and summon a heroic spirit in favor of the Holy Grail. The Grail itself is an ultimate prize that will fulfill the champion’s wishes, whether it is for the benefit of people or the selfish act. The basic of the visual novel is the direction of the story could be change based on player choice as the main character, so the story itself divided into three main routes. The player’s favor to one of the main heroine will determine the paths of the story. 


Putting aside inherent unnecessary elements in the story, like sexual innuendo and complicated magic mechanism that most of the time contradicts itself, I see Fate Series as Emiya Shirou (the main character) journey to realize his ideals as Hero of Justice. In practical explanation, he wants to protect as many people as the hero that Emiya Kiritsugu, his stepfather, portrayed in his childhood.

3645d9bfae154d2d935e7464ba939f2a.jpgFate Stay Night is the first route. As a player, you can walk this path if you put favor to Saber, Shirou’s servant. Saber is the heroic spirit of Arthur (in girl version for the sake of marketing, I guess), who had a dream to reclaim her kingdom from failing with Holy Grail later on. In the finale, Shirou fulfills his idealistic way to save everyone in the city by making Saber yield for her false dream and destroying the Holy Grail because it was revealed that the Grail is a source of chaos and destruction. The battle royale consequently ended, and the heroic spirit, including Saber, disappear. If you can endure your main character being a boy scout all the time, perhaps you will like this part of Shirou’s journey.

MV5BOTg5ZjI5ZTAtOWE2OS00MjY4LWI4ZDQtMzEzMDY4MTgzYWJlXkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyNjc3OTE4Nzk@._V1_SY1000_CR0,0,701,1000_AL_.jpgThe second route is Fate Unlimited Blade Works. You can choose this alternative story if you pick Tohsaka Rin as a love interest. Rin is a successor of the Tohsaka mage family, who has the excellent capability as magician and master to win the Holy Grail. Her servant is Archers class, which had a mischievous personality toward Shirou, but helpful when a threat comes to Rin. From Shirou’s perspective, Rin is someone who not only he admires as a woman but also he needed for support in every battle royale for Holy Grail. Shirou in this route challenged by Archer, who is the heroic spirit that created by Shirou idealism that corrupted by pessimism and harsh reality. Storywise, Archer, lost by Shirou, and his virtue gets corrected by Shirou. The battle royale ended with the death of Gilgamesh by Shirou and the destruction of the Grail by Rin. Shirou maybe becomes that Hero of Justice like the previous route, but his interaction with Archer could be entertaining if you take it as Shirou, who faces his dark side of his principle. There’s also Shirou’s relationship with Rin, which could be exciting to see because they had opposite mindsets but completing each other.

12182992-4134681247102607.jpgFate: Heavens Feel is the final route that unlocked after the player finished Fate: Stay Night and Fate: Unlimited Blade Works. There’s no significant change in the world-building, magic system, and battle royale rule. The notable thing that differs this route from others is the darkness from The Holy Grail takes the initiative lurking to eat innocent people, even the Servants. The darkness itself chooses Sakura, which would be the woman that Shirou pick as a love interest in this route, as their host. If Saber and Rin introduced as strong, independent, confident, and brilliant women in the previous route, Sakura is the opposite of all of it. Sakura was a victim of the evil of the Matou family. She constantly hurt and raped to increase her magical circuit, which becomes too large, so the Darkness of Holy Grail want her. Despite her suffering, she fights for her own freedom even she know her hope is crumbling before her eyes. Shirou is her hope. She moves without any thinking to know of Shirou, even though her approach at first seems forceful, awkward, and strange. Later on, Shirou fall in love with Sakura, which becomes the root of the conflict in Fate: Heaven Feels route because that means Shirou falls to the primary source of evil that becomes a threat to every city and his virtue. If he insists on protecting Sakura, the town, even he and Sakura itself, could be destroyed because of The Darkness of The Grail. While in the previous route you can see the interaction between Shirou and Saber or Shirou and Rin looks exciting, in this route, Shirou and Sakura feel more grounded. Shirou indeed takes all the risk for the sake of the city because of his idealism of Hero of The Justice at first, but things get complicated when he wants Sakura alive. In this route, you can see Shirou throw away his virtue for the sake of Sakura, and that’s, at least for me, is a more realistic way to portray Shirou as human. The final battle became more interesting because Shirou fights Saber, Kirei, and Sakura, who get corrupted by the darkness of the Grail. It is obvious that Shirou will win in the end eventually. Still, at least I appreciate the execution, for the example, the way Shirou to decide fights his ideals to save Sakura, Shirou realization that he is only an ordinary human that can not and should not protect everyone over his limited power. Sakura also presented as a mere woman who wants to normalize her cruel life with Shirou without being vengeful over her traumatic past. Shirou and Sakura forced to face their past so they can move to their grounded and realistic future, which may entirely not for the good of all people, but primarily suitable for facing their darkness.


Tales From Earthsea

Watched 75% of the movie and I still confused what the story is all about. First there’s two dragon killing each other, then some ‘unbalance’ nature in the land happens (being told not shown), then Arren, the edgy prince, kill his father to steal Kings sword for no reason, then he meet Archmage, then he help Therru randomly, then they work a mundane life as farmer, then suddenly come the main villain screw things up and explained her evil plan, which is relatively had little connection with a very beginning the movie because all I get is the story is just about two rivalry wizard. The pacing is all over the place and a lot of magic things happen randomly so the boring plot can progress.

The finale is slightly interesting, even it’s still didn’t explain why Arren can split his shadow? why Arren want his father sword so badly that he must kill his own father? why Ged want to take Arren? what purpose of the True Name of Arren and Therru? why they suddenly know their True Name? why Therru suddenly can transform into freaking dragon out of nowhere? It seems the story only want to convey the message that life is matter and giving life to others is the most important things rather than fear of death so anything, even it’s confusing and super convenient, will happen as long as it’s follow the message.

Whisper of the heart

First half of story kinda dragged too long. The story need ‘that convenient cat’ so Shizuku can meet Seiji properly, which it gets interesting from there. The pinnacle of this story for me is when Shizuku make her own story to understand Seiji attempt to achieve his dream job in Italy. They’re both supporting and respect each other to realize their own dream, even so, I understand that is just some story flavouring because the main point is Shizuku and Seiji confess their love each other. Most drama romance movies I watched is about two potential lover stretching their own unnecessary conflict just to confess each other.

Note : The ‘KOONTRI ROODO’ song in this movie really good.

Princess Mononoke

It begins with the gods curse in Ashitaka, which is the very first reason why the plot progress because it give him the superhuman strength and compassion about the suffer of animals that die in forest because the unending war between human, led by Eboshi, and animals in deer god forest, led by Moro, San, and Okkoto. The curse may seems convenient for Ashitaka to solve his conflict but I think its somewhat ‘balanced’ because the curse itself not only challenge Ashitaka morals to make him became hateful and destructive but also weakening his body. There’s gory scene here and there, which fit the themes because war is ugly. The main plot is about Human greed-animals attack-revenge and the evil circle goes on until final battle between human and the deer god. It’s simple and became more interesting because the faction itself is kinda divided to solve their own war, which give Ashitaka opening to stop the evil circle with his belief that human and animals in forest can coexist together.

The funny thing is, the deer god, atleast to me, seems doesnt care about the war and start giving shit after he lose his head with his omnipower, which is the final conflict in this story. It have the same pattern with Nausicaa of the Valley of the wind story.

I love Ashitaka as character, even though he too idealistic and seems have no flaws, but its acceptable because he sometimes failed. His feeling toward San kinda come too fast, maybe he just a simple guy who easily love a ‘wild’ girl riding big wolf that passes him by, jokes aside, maybe because her kindness to him in forest before.

The message of this story kinda have same vibe with Nausicaa : Hatred and revenge won’t solve anything, which is kinda too naive and cliche for me, but it’s acceptable in some degree because mother nature will ‘clear things up’ if that hatred thingy messes them up. I may look complaint and nitpicking too much in this long-ass-kind-of-review, but for me, this story is very good and give me a great inspiration.

The Wind Rises

The story mainly focus to Jiro attempt to achieve his dream to build airplane, who previously dream to become a pilot but kinda adjusted because he is nearsighted. At first glance, it seems flat, but it’s presented beautifully with imaginative exposition from Jiro perspective so you can understand his way to see world. Despite his geniuses, Jiro mostly failed to build his airplane, disappointing most of every his relative and country expectation. In his crumbling morale, he meets Nahoko at second time, which will be his wife later on because she somewhat elevated his spirit to build plane again. In finale part, Jiro succeed made his first airplane with his team that at that point he regain every hope that his company and his country longing from him. There’s some kind of dramatization in finale when Nahoko, who actually dying because her sickness, decide to leave her medication just to stay side by side to Jiro untill her husband finish his big project. From there, I somewhat already know the tragic ending for Jiro. Despite of mostly realistic things that happen from beginning toward end, Nahoko last action somewhat too romantic, just like an angel who came passes by to Jiro, give him all her love and life so his husband can fulfill his dream again, which to me kinda break the immersion. Lot of technical stuff in air crafting and blend with Japan setting before world war II so you will enjoy it more if you love these kind of things.

The Secret World of Arrietty

About first half in the movie explains the life of Arrietty and her family as borrower, basically a very small sized human, to ‘borrow’ every resource they need to live, like sugar, tissue, biscuit and other things in normal human home, which is a place of Sho, the other main character. I like this part because it focus on Arrietty perspective as small human in a very giant house to them that give me a sense of adventure when she go through it.

The interaction between Arrietty and Sho is very interesting. The very main reason Arrietty and her family to survive give Sho reason to strive and fight his heart disease.

On the second half however, the ‘villain’ come, which is basically want mess Arrietty family because she thinks they thieves, which is true in some degree. I understand the story need some dramatization so Arrietty and Sho belief kinda challenged in some way, but I feel it kinda forced because in the end, even Arrietty family get caught, Sho or his aunt will protect the borrower so the ‘evil woman’ step back. Why? because Sho grandfather already know the borrower existence and create special house for them. They obviously will fight because they believe what their grandfather want to protect.
The story kinda ‘trapped’ to concept that ‘borrower must remain unknown from humans beans’ so every Sho and Arrietty attempt to break that concept is useless because at the end of the story, it remains the status quo. Despite all of that, I still enjoy and like the story.

On the second thought, I think the story can be optimize the fully potential if Sho attempt to open dialogue with Arrietty parents. The ‘dramatization’ will come between the distrust of Arrietty parents towards human generally, which itself give Sho understanding of parents protection towards their son/daughter because Sho kinda hate their parents who leave him because of their work. Soon, the ‘evil woman’ come to catch the Arrietty families but Sho save and protect them, which give them mutual belief and agreement each other so the status quo itself broke….but, hey, it’s just my opinion.

Final Fantasy IX


Final Fantasy IX
Developer : Square
Director : Hiroyuki Ito
Producer : Hironobu Sakaguchi and Shinji Hashimoto

Final fantasy IX is my very first Role Playing Game I played back there. I remembered played it blindly, without knowing anything about strategy or tactics that commonly used in playing RPG, ended up dead many times and stuck when facing Gizamaluke’s Grotto, which I later on use Gameshark to cheat and beat the game shamelessly.

As the story, it begin with Garland, a man from Terra Planet who become the very last hope to save Terra planet and it’s people soul from destruction. By saving means that he want to find new planet, which is Gaia, so souls of Terra people who dying can find life in there. The consequence of this plan of course he must destroy the Gaia, or eliminate the people of Gaia to be precise. Unfortunately it wasn’t easy for him because Gaia had Eidolon, the summoning monster, to defend the planet.

In order to do his ‘Godly’ mission, Garland send his two ‘angel of death’ to make chaos in Gaia, which is Kuja, the main antagonist, and Zidane, the main protagonist in the game. They both are Genome, the races that contain soul of people Terra but lack of emotion and limited age. Kuja created earlier before Zidane, so he somewhat became ‘lesser’ version of Genome than Zidane which Garland acclaim as the perfect version of Genome.

At the beginning, Kuja succeed destroyed summoner village so Gaia can’t fight back with their Eidolon. But later on, he feel insecure about his imperfection due to his flawed body. He became more agitated because he know Garland want replace him with Zidane, who had more perfect body than him. He still insist to rebel his fate to dying as ‘defect’ Genome by fight Garland even he know Zidane is failed to fulfill Garland expectation because Zidane had amnesia when arrive in Gaia. That’s why he start scheming, manipulate Brahne, the queen of Alexandria by became her Arm Dealer so the Queen had an enormous Black Mage troops that created by mist and Dark Matter to summon the Eidolon.

Knowing Brahne plan to start the war, her step-daughter, Garnet til Alexandros XVI escape from the castle to investigate the key person that make Brahne sudden heart changes. Garnet helped by Zidane, Steiner, Vivi, Eiko, Freya, Quina, and Amarant to stop Brahne main plan to attack Burmecia, Cleyra, and Lindbum. They succeed to know that Kuja is the main reason of Brahne became ambitious. They also managed to destroy Iifa tree, which is the ‘Black Mage Main Factory’ that Kuja used to create Black Mage. Unfortunately, they failed to stop the queen.

Brahne use Kuja Arms with greedy heart. She summon Atomos to crushed Lindbum, emerge Black Mage troops to destroy Burmecia, and summon Odin to annihilate Cleyra completely. She make Alexandria the only kingdom that conquer Mist Continent by Kuja arms. She also start to emerge war to Kuja, by summoning Bahamut, to fight Kuja. But Kuja counter it by using Invincible, Terra Ship that can control Bahamut so instead firing him, the King Dragon fire the queen, made her madness stop.

The death of Brahne made Garnet become Queen of Alexandria. But in the night of Garnet coronation, Kuja order Bahamut attack Alexandria, enforce Garnet and Eiko to summon Alexander, the Eidolon that had enormous wing to protect Alexandria from King Dragon’s flare. Alexander managed to stop Bahamut by countering it’s flare, but alas, Invincible strike again to ‘drain’ Alexander. The different is, Invincible not moved because Kuja, but Garland, who initiate the movement because he didn’t want Kuja rebellious become stronger. Garnet shocked because the destruction of her hometown. Her heart heavily crushed because he failed to protect her people as queen, which made her can’t speak in a mean time.

The presence of Garland in Alexandria make Kuja mad. He emerge his troops to outer continent to chase Garland, which guide Zidane and the party to know that outer continent, Shimmering Island to be precise, is the ‘bridge’ between Terra and Gaia. Kuja, Zidane, and the party arrive in Terra and slowly understand Garland plan to ‘replacing’ Terra people’s soul with Gaia people’s soul by secure the use of Gaia Eidolon. It also explained that The mist in Gaia basically came from Terra which channeled from Iifa tree.

Zidane also remember his origin as Genome, one of Garland’s Angel of Death, which made him mental breakdown because of his existencial crisis. Gladly, his friends save him to empower his confidence. Zidane and the party succeed defeat Garland. But at the same time, Kuja becomes enraged (the game use ‘Trance” as it’s term) and go to the depths of Memoria to find the Crystal, the source of Life. His only mission is to ‘reset’ his dying fate as defect creatures by conquer the Crystal. After defeating Kuja in Memoria, Zidane and the party will face the last boss, Necron, which is embodiment of the Death that Kuja afraid of.

After defeating Necron, Zidane and the party back to Terra where the mist starting engulf and uncontrollable. The party, along with Tartarus, Alexandrian troops, Lindbum Soldier, and Burmecian Dragon Knight start to run from Terra along with the remaining Genomes in there. But Zidane stay still to help Kuja who dying in there. One year later, after the restoration of many destruction that happen in mist Continent in Gaia, Zidane come back safely to Alexandria to meet his lover, Garnet, and his friend. Happy ending as always.

The setting and the music in Final Fantasy IX is very atmospheric with it’s ‘fantasy’, of course, which make you easily immerse with the world that presented in the game. Many races, and it’s each own quirky, made the setting interesting in someway. The basic story is solid, however, there’s some of my nitpicking in this series :

  1. I don’t understand why Garland seems to be hold himself even his mission to conquer Gaia is very important. He know Kuja rebel to him and Zidane fail to fulfill his mission but he seems not care about it. I mean, he had fully control of Invincible who can conquer Eidolon easily from it’s summoner (example : Kuja used it to control Bahamut when Brahne want kill him by using Bahamut). It feels so weird to me when he used the Invincible only to control Alexander. Invincible is overpowered device that can flip every protagonist hope to fight back, which is strange if Garland must send his two ‘Angel of Death’ because Invincible can do all the work. Even Kuja can’t fight back when Garland take over Invincible. It was unfortunate that Garland, who I presume the main antagonist, become weaker, and nicer, forcefully by the plot without redeeming execution so Zidane and Kuja can get their own stage in the story later on.
  2. The story oftentimes tell about how people had value to survive despite their’s limitation. Kuja and Vivi is the primary character who moved by this premises. They both feel insecure about their existence who destined to destroyed or controlled by their ‘master’ in their lifetime. Kuja is the one who resist about it an try to achieve the perfection in himself, while Vivi accept his destiny and try to made value in his short life. Very interesting to take, even I consider Vivi is more interesting main protagonist rather than Zidane, which had me disconnected when Zidane lead the journey because he didn’t had same problem like Vivi. I feel he just there as the charming guy who can solve it all the problem that Kuja make and give Vivi nice pat to get rid his friend’s sorrow. Yes, Zidane had mental breakdown when he realize that he created by Garland to destroy Gaia, but why though? He had amnesia about it and feel nothing before Garland told him about it. I guess it’s happen just for the sake of the drama, to show that Zidane is vulnerable.
  3. There’s a sub-plot in each character when the main plot goes on (self choice themes by Garnet and Steiner when they escaped castle is one of the example) which I considered is pretty good to make character develops or at least introspect with their choice. Too bad this sub-plot somehow drifted away by when the main plot strikes. When Garland strikes, most of character, except Zidane, is just a merely Kuja’s victim of war with a very little emotional relationship between them, which made our investment to each character is irrelevant.
  4. From first to third part, the story feel so atmospheric with it’s fantasy, like races quirk, Zidane’s flirt behaviour to Garnet, Quina desire for only food in his/her live and often times feels comedic (Cid become ogloph and frog is the example). Of course there’s big scene happen when Eidolon start destroy the city which made the tension feel real, but then it somehow passed by because it’s directing to fantasy atmospheric and comedic again later on, except when Garland appears.
  5. In the last part of the story, Genome who still live in Terra migrated to Gaia before Terra itself destroyed after Garland defeated. Later on, it explained that most Genome try to live together with people in Terra. If that can be happen, why Garland bother to destroy Gaia then? The main problem that Garland had to save his own people is his people soul cannot be lived if there’s still people in Gaia. But after Zidane migrated the Terra people to Gaia, that problem seems disappear without any reason.

Despite of my own nitpicking, Final Fantasy IX still enjoyable and playable. In story perspective, most of the time it tries to solid to it’s themes, which sometimes missed but it tends blinded by player. In game play perspective, I enjoy the unique of each character skill and ability binding, but the Trance system too rigid that you can’t depend on it when boss battle (I still prefer Limit break system from FF VII and FF VIII). The character design is cute and funny which appeal to mainstream player, even to the kids, but the side effect of this is made the story feels too childish and tend not to take it seriously.

Capitalism and Inequality

Foreign Affairs Volume 92 Number 2
Capitalism and Inequality : What the Right and Left get Wrong

Journal by : Jerry Z. Muller


I may not an expert in this topic because all I know is general things about capitalism and socialism in surface level, which could be wrong interpretation, but I kinda want make this writing for the sake of it because this Journal give adequate and interesting explanation about capitalism, atleast for me.

In the very first part, the Author explain the effect of capitalism in America, which considered to be an economical inequality to it’s people. The people in the ‘left’ said Government must act to, atleast, reduce the inequality by taxing and spending a lot. The people in the ‘right’ said it was not necessary because the ‘market’ will correct the inequality itself later on so they must reduce Government taxing and spending. The author think’s they both wrong because inequality is ‘inherent’ problem as Capitalism implied.

Before the reasoning, the Author marked capitalism as private property use, goods and services distribution and selling based on free individual decision and market system. In capitalism system, only people who can ‘serve’ the market need, in more effective and efficient way, who can be succeed and the others who can’t will fail. That’s why capitalism, somehow, define the equality based on their people capability to answer the market need. The normative of this system pushed people spending their lifetime, creating new, innovative, even strange sometimes, ideas for market purpose so everyone get the benefit.

In advance capitalism countries, as Author explain, lot of barrier reduced so everyone, including woman, minorities, and the poor can participate in capitalism system, work for ‘market need’. The very easy example is role of woman shifting from household to corporate or company, which in this era of technology is allowing they made their own idea or work like other man basically do. The marriage which considered as union of woman and man in their base role (Man work to get money, woman work to take care the children and houses) somehow shifted to ‘partner’ who work together in capitalism system because they can get what they want to consume easily by the money they had in this kind of market.

The author explain in pre-capitalism era, the ‘market need’ marked by special organization or institution who had the right to do so, which may dictate the people live at some point, but at the same time, it can teach what really people need, because they may had capability to detect unnecessary need that people try to make or sell.

There’s always constant dynamism and innovation in capitalism to emerge the most benefit to all people at certain point, which at the same time, create a lot of insecurity to people who participate it because they must role their new idea before other people who had better idea kick them from the market. The left party in american, as the Author explain, mostly push the government to facilitate this insecurity, which may kind of social insurance or securities form.

Back to inequality, the author state that the problem about inequality in this capitalism system is not the lack of opportunity to participate, but because some of people incapable to knowing how to participate. There’s some explanation that Government  enforce children to participate education so they had skill to do so but, as the statistic Author use, there’s only 75% of U.S. high school graduation rate and roughly 40% of young adults are enrolled in college in twentieth century. The argument continued that there’s people, who may didn’t finish high school or college, had higher living standard than the people who graduate from it, which made the education questionable to function as the Government want.

In the end chapter, the Author ‘offers’ some probability thing’s to do for Government to solve the inequality because the capitalism, which is :

  1. Emerge redistribution income, by taxes, to reduce the rising of insecurity and inequality to come, which may had drawbacks because the Taxation must ‘flexible’ at some point to pay the insecurity that comes in period. Even that didn’t solve the underlying problem.

  2. Increasing the facilitation that enable the knowledge, Internet is the big example, so people can learn how to participate in capitalism system.

  3. Push the under-performed people by Government, as Author stated, is worse than cure the diseases because it promoting the under-performed which contradict as capitalism create and promote.

I admit capitalism emerge self-cultivation, self-responsibility and unlimited development which make people in general get the benefit of it. A lot of idea and creative product created by this system. But at the same time, the so called ‘self-cultivation’ tend to produce what market want, which may weird, strange or unnecessary at some point. Yes, they may argue as long as the idea sold then it works, but it not always direct towards good things. In the age of internet, I enjoy my time browsing and searching stuff I need for educational, tips, or entertainment purpose, but at the same time, I feel there’s too many information, or even shitty jokes and stupid debate in there, which made false alleged that as long as it’s popular/viral in media or internet then it’s right to do, even when you think about it just a moment, you know that most popular thingy kinda dumb and unnecessary  at certain degree.

The ‘responsibility’ to control that strange influence shifting from the authorized institutional to ourselves because Capitalism system enforce to reduce that kind of institute, blamed because it barriers the ‘work of free market’. I agree we should be responsible to each own life, but then again, how about people who still not adult and not wise enough to make decision? They can learn anything in Internet lately because the Capitalism open this channel, but they may not know it is unwise thing to do. This is why the role of parenthood in this capitalism is mostly needed, not only to educate their children as ‘capitalism participator’ later on, but also to teach them some virtue in living which may not valued by money or benefit as capitalism forced us to search.

Final Fantasy VII

Final Fantasy VII


Director : Yoshinori Kitanase
Producer : Hironobu Sakaguchi

Final Fantasy VII is the second RPG I’ve played and I barely remember the story beside meteor fall, Shinra goes nuts and Cloud must save the day after his mental breakdown. After rewatching it, I now understand why so many fans tend to hype this series.

The setting of the story take hold in Planet, may called Gaia at some point and kinda like earth, which just get ‘industrialized’ by the biggest company in the Planet, Shinra is it’s name, by exploiting the Planet Energy called Mako. The civilization in the Planet shifting to modern life, most of it, because of the using Mako as new source of energy, even there’s some part of the Planet who still live with it’s traditional pace.

Shinra created Shinra’s Reactor all over the planet to exploit all Mako in every side of the planet, which is dangerous for the planet itself, but Shinra didn’t care. They dare to fight back, even kill, anyone who won’t obey. There’s history that Shinra killed or take as experiment every Ancient, a kind of human who can ‘speak’ with ‘Planet’ to find Promised Land, some Land that they believe full of Mako energy so they can rule the world. One of the Ancient experiment is Sephiroth, the best elite soldier of Shinra.

Sephiroth ‘born’ from human, which is Hojo, and Ancients, which is Jenova. But as the story goes on, it was explained that Jenova is not Ancient. ‘She’ is a somewhat same as Ancient, but had destructive instinct to engulf the Planet. This evil Ancient trying to destroy the planet in the past by wounding it badly but get halt by Ancient and human who work together. That’s why there’s Weapon, a monstrously fiend who created by Planet to protect from the same threat.

Back to Sephiroth, he had vague memories about his past and his origin. But then when he goes to Nibleheim on mission, where people experimented by Jenova cell in there, he realizes his origin, which make him driving insane and choose to fight Shinra and the Planet by saving Jenova to restore his mother pride and his race (evil Ancient). In that mission, Sephiroth fight with Zack, the first elite soldier, and Cloud, the normal soldier. Sephiroth still win the fight with mortal wound after the fight. Zack and Cloud didn’t survive but later on took and get experimented by Hojo. Both of them injected by Jenova and Sephiroth cell and, somehow, back to life and escaped from there. Zack killed when chased by Shinra, but Cloud survive, with his broken memories that always exchanged by Zack memories.

Go to present time, Cloud. as mercenaries, joined Avalanche, a rebel group who fight Shinra, lead by Barret and Tifa. They managed to destroy one of Shinra’s reactor but Cloud getting separated in middle of mission, which lead him to Aerith, the young woman who are the last Ancient who still survive and also Zack’s girlfriend. Shinra who still believe that Ancient will lead them to Promises Land kidnap Aerith so Cloud, together with Tifa and Barret, infiltrate Shinra Headquarter to save her. Cloud failed and jailed by Shinra, but then supprisingly Sephiroth come and murder lot of Shinra soldier, including the president itself. Fortunately, by that chance, Cloud and others managed take Aerith to safety. From there, they realized the Sephiroth ambition to destroy the Planet so they want to stop him, which is initial move to find Sephiroth.

Sephiroth objective is shifting from revenge to become a god-like by creating big meteor fall to Planet using Black Materia, which is not destroying but give a deadly wound to the planet which will force the planet to make an large amount of Mako to restore it. When that happen, Sephiroth will take that Mako to made him and Jenova become new god in the planet. Black Materia is taken in last Ancient Temple, which initially taken by Cloud but by Sephiroth mind hypnosis, Cloud forced to give the Black materia to him.

Cloud who still guilt and feel lost because Sephirot Mind Hypnosis made Aerith to stop Sephiroth by herself in ruined city of Cetra. She praying to the planet to using holy materia, which is somewhat anti-weapon of black materia. Cloud get hypnotized again by Sephiroth to kill Aerith but he resist, so Sephiroth kill Aerith by his own hand. Sephiroth succeed.

Still confused about his mind and memory, Cloud force himself goes with the party to Northen Crater, a place where Sephiroth real body and Jenova in there. Shinra, who lead by Rufus, the President Son’s, go to the same place because they also hunt Sephiroth. Lots of revealing in there, about Planet, Ancients, Jenova, Evil Ancients, and many other things, which lead to Cloud who get controlled again to give black materia by Sephiroth because he is the Sephiroth clone after Hojo experiment. Sephiroth and Jenova resurrected because of black materia, which at the same time make Weapons awoke to eliminate everything that they ‘think’ made threat to the Planet, including Shinra, Cloud party and other innocent human.

After that chaos, Cloud get broken because flooded by Mako poison. Tifa stay with Cloud, help him to restore his memories which kinda mess because Hojo experiment. They both succeed and reveal the truth abouth Cloud’s real identitiy and his reason to ‘lie’ as Zack so he can get his confidence to fight Sephiroth again without getting hypnotized. Realized the Planet in ultimate danger between Sephiroth awake, meteor falling, and arise of Weapons, Cloud, Tifa, and the party start the battle again to save the planet.

Shinra also want ‘save’ the Planet with their own way. They use canon, even rocket, fueled by special materia to ram the big meteor but failed. There’s also big battle between Shinra and Weapons who attack Midgard and other city. They both get destroyed because Hojo making mess between their war. Why? Because Hojo want protect Sephiroth, his ‘son’. Thankfully, Cloud and the party managed to stop that crazy scientist.

After that, Cloud and the party getting back Holy Materia from Centra Ruins and go to Northen Crater to rematch with Sephiroth and Jenova, which is basically the final battle from there. They succeed defeat both of Sephiroth and Jenova and activate Holy materia to hold the meteor that come falling. It seems failed at first because Holy Materia can’t hold the huge destructive power of the meteor, but, conveniently, the Planet comes with it’s Mako energy to help Holy Materia so they can fully destroyed the meteor.  The Planet saved once again by our heroes and Shinra ‘industrialization’ somehow replaced by the nature power of the Planet after their destruction.

I found this series is engaging in some way because the creator, atleast to me, seems care to enrich this story, make each character had their own arc and related with main plot and solid world building (mostly they all get their live fucked by Shinra at first). Cloud may ‘odd’ to me as main character when I see it in first half, but as story goes on, I can understand the mess he had, which somewhat convoluted in certain degree. As ‘evil’ as Shinra looks, I don’t know why I can’t hate them as villain when they try to protect the Planet from Weapons and Meteor with their own way. There’s some part of my thinking that Shinra will get ‘tolerated’ when the bigger threat (Sephiroth and Jenova) comes, but I guess the creator seems take favor to Cloud and the party, obviously. Can’t blame it because Shinra is taking every consequences they make because their villainous way. The theme may seems ‘traditional’ to me, which is nature versus industrialized, but the execution remains consistent and somehow predictable because the nature always ‘right’ and win at the end.

The Subtle Art Of Not Giving Fuck


The Subtle Art Of Not Giving Fuck : A Counterintuitive Approach To Living a Good Life

Author : Mark Manson

The title of the book is provocative enough to impress that the content is teachs you how to not give fuck (care) about everything, which is somewhat may lead you into psychopath, but in fact it doesn’t. The book explain how to give fuck (care) about something important in our life in order to reach happiness, which is hugely different in every people perspective based one their experience, and ditch everything that irrelevant beside that. Kinda had same vibe with ‘goodbye, things’ by Fumio Sasaki, but it explained in different perspective. The book divided into nine chapter.

In first chapter, the Author tell you about the book’s objective, which I explained in first paragraph. In second chapter, the author explains that Happinness is not problem-free condition that most people always tell us, instead ‘True’ Happiness comes from problem. The author elaborated more further that life is suffering to every human, even they born from rich or stable family, life always find some ‘way’ to made us miserable or suffer.

Escape from the problem by getting drunk, partying, or doing crazy fun stuff may shift the anxiety from the problem we had, but it didn’t make the problem solved, instead, it can add more problem that we should attained. We had, or create, every reason to escape our own problem. Emotion is the mostly reason as the author stated, but the emotion itself oftentimes manipulative and trick your weak mind. That’s why, the Author believe that we, at the very least, choose our own problem to fuck (care) and pick how to struggle untill it get solved so the happiness we longing for achieved.

In Third Chapter, the author explain the dangerous of ‘identity falsehood’. He explained that most people oftentimes stick to their imagination about the identity they want based on their social circle, workplace, or family, even if they must lie in order to constantly made their ‘identity imaginaton’ real. The danger of this behaviour is come from the ‘identity’ that too different or too blend from mainstream social.

In case of the identity that too far different from social mainstream, people tend to make excuse to made them ‘exceptional’ because they identified, by themselves, too ‘different’ from the others, which oftentimes made they lazy to solve their own problem, hiding in their ‘exceptional’ reason. In the other hand, people who use that ‘identity card’ to follow the mainstream social will constantly anxious of what people thinking about him/her because the dynamic of people perceive about value’s in social term, even the values changes into creepy and toxic. This kind of people will follow it because they are shallow in their heart. That’s why the author told the reader not to be unique. We are not special. We had problem as any other and we had same responsibility to solve it with our own way so don’t blame your shitty situation to others. That decision will help people to more focuses to face the problem without confused about ‘identity falsehood’.

In fourth chapter, the author explained about the value of suffering, which is very tricky if you take a deep thought of it. It is explained by the Author that suffering, basically, happens because our dreams/target/expectation not fulfilled in reality. The thing is, we rarely ask ourself : is our dreams/target/expectation really can make us happy if it’s really happened? The Author give some example big artist who expelled from the band without any decent reason. Some can’t accept the rejection and take his life to revenge the band by making new band and spent most of his life to make great song to beat his enemy, which is succeed in some degree but not become too big if compared by his ‘arc nemesis’ (The man is Dave Mustaine – Megadeth Band). While in other example, there’s the one just kinda accept the rejection and started new life, which lead him to meet woman who will become his wife later. He may not become bigger ‘success’ as the band who expel him, but later he had stable marriage with his wife and participate as drummer in mostly international festival with fairly adequate payment (The man is Pete Beast, The Beatles). The Author conclude that ‘tragedy’ or shitty things that happen, which oftentimes comes unexpectedly, must be faced with precautionary and patient mind, as cliche as it sounds, you will never know the other way to ‘happiness’ that may lead to. It will be a needles suffering if you pick your own struggle just to prove you are worthed to someone who may didn’t care enough about you. Keeping the values of course is the key, which is the baseline toward ‘happiness’, but sometimes the values itself can be deceptive and irrelevant with your real condition, so you must had open-minded to admit the flaw that may come in your values.

In fifth chapter, the author elaborated more about choosing your own struggle. In life, there’s time we think that we didn’t choose the optional course that may lead our life into, but the reality is, the decision not to choose is decision itself, which in Life perspective, may lead you into other way that maybe you want to avoid. The Author tell that we oftentimes didn’t want take responsibilty of the problem that come, or tragedy to take it extremely, because they didn’t choose the problem. Unfortunately, life is problem, so even we didn’t want it, there’s always problem that will come. The only way to make it ‘meaningful’ is to take it, even we didn’t want to. Face it, pick your own struggle, and don’t give fuck (care) everything beside that.

Chapter sixth, seventh, and eighth mostly explained about failures that, always, happen in our life. We, as author stated, always see failures as bad things that should not exist in very first place, which is true at some point, but Life didn’t think that way. Failure is sign that challenge our values that we keeps inside in our heart. As we hate it, or as we prepared not to get this nightmare of failure, Life had their own way to shoving it into our throat. What the author want to told is, we should take the risk of failure even we hate or afraid or we try so hard until become depressed or anxious to face it, because there’s always possibly of it. Take the failure as step to improve and questioning our values that may irrelevant with our own current struggle.

The final chapter tells about death, the ultimate thing that made mostly human come numb and fear to accept it. In this chapter, the author told that if we fear of the death, then we fear of living too. Same as failure in life, if we accept that death will come to us or someone that hold dear to us, in whatever or whenever condition that seems to be, prepared or not, we will ‘free’ from the manipulative of ‘safe’ living. The moment we accept this reality then we started ‘real’ living with whatever expectation that will come, which relatively make we more ease to face every problem that always happens in uncertain way in life.

There’s many things that Author cover beside that I pointed before. Some content that stuck in my mind is the danger of shitty values which indicated by trying to get : (1) Pleasures, (2) material success, (3) always being right, and (4) staying positive, which is suprisingly ‘harsh’ and honest in my opinion because it somehow negate the ‘mainstream success’ that always told to us in every media. Mostly every part in this book tells you that ‘Life is suffering so choose your suffering to fuck (care) wisely’, which sounds too pragmatic and kinda egoistic in some degree, but somehow it ended true anyway. For anyone who had optimistic, bright, yes-man personality and ambitious, this book may shock you in some way, but it give pretty interesting insight because life is indeed suffering to each of us.