Saturday, May 31, 2014

Triage X Volume 6 Review



Yes, readers, I am alive. Since my last review got a good response, so here's my review of Triage X Volume 6.

First I want to take the time to commend Yen Press for bringing such an excellent product to English-speaking manga readers around the world. Their books have been getting better and better, and in my opinion the quality of their releases has far surpassed most other publishers and most scanlations and is at least on the same level as the best. This volume is no exception.

You can see all of the great manga Yen Press has to offer on Amazon.


First off, we get a lovely pullout color spread of Mikoto, holding a...er...mushroom. The reverse side of this is a bath scene illustration that's a couple years old now.


This volume begins right in the middle of the action, during the NEO TV terrorist crisis that started in Volume 5. Oriha is trying to deal with the terrorists from within while Mikoto and Arashi are on their way to help. The last volume was mostly slow-paced, giving the setup story for future chapters. This one, on the other hand, is all action from start to finish.


If you got into this series for the pure nonstop action, then you will enjoy this volume much more than the last one. I liked the plot progression we got in Volume 5, but this one is a return to Shouji Sato's developing style of giving plot amidst the action, in a manner somewhat reminiscent of the highly-acclaimed Akira. I think Shouji is improving as a storyteller, and we are finally going to see a richer story as a result, one that doesn't rely on meaningless violence and doesn't lull into half-baked back story.

In other words, there's plenty of action, but this is not just a mindless action manga anymore.


Of course this is Inazuma-sensei we're dealing with here, so there's no shortage of mindless fanservice. But even this ecchi-heavy scene has a purpose (unlike the famous HOTD bath scene) as it helps characterize one of the major antagonists going forward.

In fact, despite the high level of action I've mentioned, this volume does take time to move the plot and introduce this arc's major antagonists. It seems the new drug we got a glimpse of in the last arc is making a return, and this time the people controlling it may be more than our favorite assassins can handle. This volume ends on an uncertain note, so we'll have to wait a few months to find out just how dire the situation is. (If you kept up with my raws, you may already know how it goes, at least for another volume or two).

Some of you may still be asking, "Should I buy this volume?" Well...


I mentioned in my review of Volume 5 that there was an unusual lack of nudity. I think they made up for it with this bath scene. There is more to it that I'm not showing here.

Overall, I really enjoyed this volume. It's my favorite so far and seems to indicate that the series is going to keep getting better. I strongly recommend fans of the series buy Triage X Volume 6 at Amazon.



It seems a joke about televised media and its typical audience translates quite well into English, particularly for Americans (though I'm sure the message is quite universal among developed nations).


Sunday, January 26, 2014

Triage X Volume 5 Review



So I just got my copy of Triage X Volume 5 from Amazon, and I figured I'd give anyone still keeping up with this site a review. By the way, if you want to read new chapters of Triage X you should buy this volume; I don't think there will ever be a scanlation now.

First off, I'd like to talk about the Yen Press edition itself. This is the first Yen Press item I've purchased since HOTD Volume 3, and I have to say I'm impressed by the amount of improvement here. One thing I really like is that the color page is a pullout just like the Japanese version.


The quality is still cheaper than Japanese manga (most noticeable in the rough paper and lack of a dust jacket), but it's vastly better than the first HOTD volume. I also think the black and white levels can improve a little. As you can see below, the greys are pretty well intact, but I think a little bit of detail is still being lost (again, though, not nearly as bad as early HOTD volumes).


Overall I'm very happy with the work Yen press is doing. The translations were great, and I love the way they do SFX. This was a pleasurable reading experience.

Now onto Volume 5 itself.

I (like many of my readers) spoiled the story for myself a bit by looking at the raws when they originally came out in Japan. Maybe that was why I didn't feel like a lot happened in this volume. Then again I do remember the NEO TV crisis dragging out for quite a while.

These chapters are largely centered around setting up the new arc and introducing a new adversary for the Black Label group. The Hunting Party is an organization bent on exposing humans for the animals they are--namely those in the Black Label--and are led by Wild Hunt.


Even if it is all exposition, this chapter has everything you love in this series: action, comedy, and plenty of fanservice. And of course it has that certain grittiness Shouji Sato is so keen to weave into his series. Innocent people die and gloom hangs over each panel. One characteristic of Sato-sensei's work that is notably absent is nudity. There's only one nipple in the entire book.


Unfortunately, this lonely milk missile leads into a painfully absurd and somewhat contrived scene where all of the captive females fight over who gets to become the personal love toy of the bad guy. It's ridiculous in terms of the story, but I guess it's great if you're a big H fan.

Other than that little hitch in the story's flow, this was a decent volume. It's definitely far from my favorite, but I do look forward to what it sets up.



I noticed this otaku who looks suspiciously like Kohta from HOTD from behind. If you look closely, you'll notice that the figure on the left of his desk seems to be Saya.






Monday, September 23, 2013

A Certain Around 30's Delusions c1-2



Here's two chapters (or a two-part oneshot? I'm not really sure if there will be more or not) of an ecchi series by Kuon Makoto that were in Dragon Age over the summer. It was so refreshing seeing something in the magazine that didn't involve teenage girls accidentally showing their boobs and panties that I had to scanlate it.

Warning: Both chapters contain adult material (including borderline bestiality, sort of). I think the picture should speak for itself. Nothing too 18+, but I wouldn't read it with your mom/significant other in the room. Just picture if one of the girls in tentacle-rape hentai (oh come on, you know what I'm talking about) really liked the tentacles... Enjoy!

Chapter 1
DDL
Batoto

Chapter 2
DDL
Batoto

A special thanks to DEUS, the translator who was so kind as to lend me his skills for these. He will be helping me out now, so hopefully I'll be able to get releases out just a bit more frequently than before.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

October Raws and Announcement


Big-boob Glasses-san got the food and is all ready to serve her boss-chan. Too bad M-sama needs a new toy.

Triage X c39 raw

It really doesn't look like this series will be picked up, so to continue reading I would suggest you go buy Volume 5 on Amazon. It may or may not ship early (official release is Jan. 2014).



Remember that time back in high school when you slept over at your young, hot teacher's apartment for private lessons and you accidentally saw her panties a lot and accidentally made her rather large breasts pop out? Me neither. Takeru, you lucky bastard...

Maken-Ki! c63 raw


I've been anticipating this for a while and have thus been hinting at it, but it's time to make the official announcement: I will no longer be getting Monthly Dragon Age each month. This means I will no longer be posting raws of Maken-Ki! and Triage X. I hope you will all understand. I'll still try to keep up with any relevant news and post it here, but it won't be quite the same when I don't have the original source. This was a necessary move for me, so please don't hold it against me.

Necro;Chronicle will hopefully be done soon.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Monthly Dragon Age - October (9/9/2013)


No HOTD news. Nope. Nothing. Not this time. (I'm running out of ways to say this.)

So straight on to other things: A staggering three different series ended this month. The first one, Full Metal Panic! Sigma isn't a big surprise since it has been rather sporadic lately. It ends it's long run (for a DA series) on its 88th chapter with color pages. Dakara Boku wa, H ga Dekinai (So, I can't be H) also ended, which is also not too surprising considering series that rely heavily on ecchi and fanservice don't usually last too long.

A little more surprising is the third series to meet its end, Omamori Himari. The series got the honor of the front cover and the opening spot with color pages for its farewell to the manga world. I didn't expect this, but then again 75 chapters is a pretty good run for a monthly DA series. I actually stopped reading around c50, but it was a fun series with a nice balance of ecchi and action. The scanlation (by Vortex) is still about 10 chapters behind, so readers will have to wait a bit to see who Yuuto ends up with.

Vito asked me to scan this:


I'm not sure what series it's from, but there you go.

Necro;Chronicle c4 is coming, though I'm not sure when. I have everything done, just waiting on the translations. Chapter 5 was out this month, but the series is taking a one-month break; so c6 will be out in November. It'll probably be tomorrow before I get the monthly raws up.


Surprisingly enough, this issue was quite clean by Dragon Age standards. For your smut of the month, I just chose the picture with the most nude girls. I guess this also works as a farewell salute to Omamori Himari.


How all harem manga should end.



Sunday, August 25, 2013

HOTD and Triage X: Answering Questions


Over the last year or so I've been getting a lot of questions that have increased in frequency of late as to when/if I will continue the Triage X (and HOTD to an increasingly lesser extent) scanlations. I think my answers have been a little vague, but the truth is I wasn't really sure what I was going to do until recently. It's time to bring you some clarity.

First off, I've been saying this more or less for a while, but I guess I can make it official: I will no longer be involved in scanlating HOTD or providing related raw scans--that is, aside from illustrations and stuff that appear in Dragon Age. Now that Yen Press will be releasing chapters right away and even selling their versions of other material like the art book, there is no reason for me to continue. I'll continue to give you links to new chapters and of course updates on any news out of Japan, but I will not allow any link to free pirated versions of Yen Press' published material on this site.

That was an easy decision; Triage X, on the other hand, gave me a lot more trouble. As some of you know, I've been struggling to find a translator for the series for some time now with no luck. All the while Yen Press has been slowly catching up on their releases. Since YP releases a volume every 3 months or so and a new Japanese volume comes out every 5 months roughly, I think it's safe to assume the official translations will catch up to the Japanese at some point and simultaneous monthly chapters are a logical step after that. Because of this, my inability to find interested translators, and my general desire to move away from licensed series I have decided to officially drop Triage X. I will still give you monthly raws (for a while at least), but scanlation will not continue as far as I'm concerned.

So to make it clear: I will no longer be involved in scanlating HOTD or Triage X. I have officially dropped both series. I will continue to bring you news and announcements about both series, though.

I'm not closing shop just yet. I still have Necro;Chronicle and Maken-Ki! Kai!! and I have a few things that I may get to in the future (even one for HOTD fans). And of course, monthly Dragon Age updates will continue as long as I can afford it or enough donations come in. Really not much has changed except that I took a few links down and I can now give a definite answer to the questions I'm getting.

For good measure I've decided to start helping English-speaking fans find official material and support the series, so I'll be providing links to the products. Here are the latest releases for each series on Amazon:

Triage X Volume 3 (latest release)
Triage X Volume 5 (pre-order)

HOTD Act.30
HOTD Color Omnibus 2 (pre-order)

I know some of you will be disappointed, but please try to keep comments civil. I am a human being living in the real world, and I'm doing my best to balance this hobby from my college days with real life.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Monthly Raws - September


The astute Star Wars fan will notice that Mikoto is wearing the famous Slave Leia outfit (sans loincloth). That must mean the tentacle monster she's being raped by is the Sarlacc?

Triage X c38 raw





Ouken's grandchildren are back, and they brought reinforcements. It's not exactly clear if this is the beginning of a new arc or a continuation of the last one. We'll see.

Maken-Ki! c62 raw