Anime Review

Anime Hajime Review: Full Dive – This Ultimate Next-Gen Full Dive RPG Is Even Sh-ttier than Real Life

Original Run: April 7, 2021 - 23, 2021
Number of Episodes: 12
Genre: Action, Comedy, Fantasy, Isekai
Based on the Series Created By: Light Tuchihi

***Warning, the following may contain spoilers for Full Dive: This Ultimate Next-Gen Full Dive RPG Is Even Sh-tier than Real Life!. Reader discretion is advised.***

Series Synopsis

Ten years ago, the world’s first – and only – ultra-realistic VR game, “Kiwame Quest,” released. Unfortunately, it was so close to real-life that no one wanted to play it. Nowadays, the “Kiwame Quest” community is practically dead, with only a handful of still active players.

Such is the state Hiroshi Yuuki (voiced by Daiki Yamashita) finds it in after a local game shop owner, Reona Kisaragi (voiced by Ayana Taketatsu), tricks him into buying a copy.

When Hiroshi logs in, “Kiwame Quest’s” attention to detail and realism is astonishing – at first. Soon, though, Hiroshi realizes that there is no such thing as “gamer logic” in this world. Instead, “Kiwame Quest” is like actual reality, but, like, way worse.

Full Dive

Series Positives

One deep breath in; one long breath out.

And one deep breath in; one long breath out.

Not yet. Not. Yet.

Full Dive: This Ultimate Next-Gen Full Dive RPG Is Even Sh-tier than Real Life! (Full Dive) was a show. It happened; I watched it, and, for some reason, I’m here to review it so that I may move on with my time.

To say something positive about Full Dive, well, its animation wasn’t terrible. Usually, this is where I would concede something to the effect of, “despite everything, the art style was impressive eye candy.” Now, at the time of this review going live (September 2021), it is hard to know if this show’s visual quality was a fluke or something we should expect from Studio ENGI. Up to this point, Anime Hajime has only highlighted one other anime from this company, Uzaki-chan Wants to Hang Out!.

For the record, Uzaki-chan Wants to Hang Out was fine, but its animation certainly wasn’t the thing to remember about it. Granted, I say this knowing full well that the two ridiculous, impossible-to-miss mounds which hung from the titular Uzaki-chan’s chest make such a statement seem contradictory.

Regardless, in the case of Full Dive, this show had moments when it looked alright.

Then again, I used the word “usually” because otherwise, it might imply I gave a crap. Believe me, this series could have been a next-level masterpiece of artistry, and I still would have thought of plenty of bathroom visits more satisfying than it.

It’s starting to leak out. Just hold it in for a bit longer, Odyssey.

Right…um…Oh!

There was one idea in Full Dive I thought was quite clever.

Within the ultra-realistic game world of “Kiwame Quest,” PC death was something of an inevitability. However, even in this series, the idea of a video game that could kill off its player-base would have been too much. And yet, there needed to be a punishment severe enough to fall in line with the gameplay.

What this show did was rather clever, or, at least, I haven’t seen any other series implement it. As you may have well guessed, “Kiwame Quest” had a perma-death feature. But to have it serve as a punishment, not only would a save file become corrupted, a player’s VR system (which cost close to a thousand USD) would also break beyond repair.

Is such a consequence beyond harsh? You better believe it was. But for the sort of game “Kiwame Quest” sold itself as, it was a deterrent for people who wanted to cheese the mechanics.

Sure enough, this made “Kiwame Quest” a terrible game that no rational person would ever want to play, hence the premise of this show.

But that was the thing. Why the hell would anyone play such a game? Sure, you had the long-time veterans who had made “Kiwame Quest” a part of their lives. Except, how do you explain someone like protagonist Hiroshi Yuuki?

Okay, he played once because that’s what you do with a new game. But upon realizing what he was getting into, why did he keep coming back? Why did he subject himself to this torment over and over again? No one was twisting his arm; no one forced him to turn on his machine? Nevertheless, Hiroshi soldiered on, bitching and whining the whole way about how awful the game he was choosing to play was.

Yeah, he got s@at on throughout this show and was a perpetual punching bag, but do you think I felt sorry for him? No, one hundred percent no. Hiroshi was an irritating dillweed that constantly let everyone walk over him because he was also a gullible little prat.

AND I AM F@#$ING DONE BEING NICE. LET’S GET INTO WHY FULL DIVE WAS UTTER TRASH!

Series Negatives

I don’t remember the last time I watched an anime that was this mean-spirited.

Typically, I do like it when a cast is awful to each other; I enjoy the back and forth, the trickery, the sarcasm, and the pettiness. The thing is, though, when a series has this, there needs to be balance. One person cannot just be a doormat; everyone needs to be able to fend for themselves and come out ahead occasionally.

Take KonoSuba, for example. Kazuma was often the butt of many jokes, and he was a bit of a loser. However, we can say the same thing for the rest of his friends, Aqua, Megumin, and Darkness. These four were on a level playing field, which allowed them to work well together. And even though they bumbled and broke their way through every obstacle, sometimes they did win; there was something to cheer for in the end.

What did Hiroshi do in Full Dive? Nothing! Not a damn thing. He was always at the bottom, he never got a victory, and he never – EVER – became a protagonist anyone would want to support.

I get what some of you might be thinking:

Shouldn’t this pile of nothingness have some sympathy at least?

NO! Absolutely not. I mean, sure, the first time Hiroshi logged into “Kiwame Quest” was one thing; he didn’t know what was about to come. Except, what leniency that offered him did not last long. Maybe it’s just me, but I would have instantly tried turning off a game that caused actual physical pain.

Hell, the freaking title of this series should have been a massive red flag. “This Ultimate Next-Gen Full Dive RPG Is Even Sh-ttier Real Life,” ah, you meant that literally, didn’t you show?

“But Odyssey,” you might be saying, “Wasn’t that why ‘Kiwame Quest’ was practically dead? No one wanted to play a game that was too real.”

Exactly, no one except Hiroshi, who kept returning day after day even though he was nearly murdered, almost tortured, brutally bullied, and made to look like the biggest asshat every time he opened his mouth. And why did he go through this? All because a random game shop owner with big boobs and an I-only-care-about-myself personality asked him to.

Despite Reona Kisaragi conning Hiroshi out of 10,000 yen (about 80 USD) – which is not a small chunk of change to give up on – there is a limit.

Holy hell, Reona nearly caused me to give up on this show. I am not exaggerating; her attitude and general horribleness had me sick to my stomach. I’m not sure if an anime has ever done that to me. She was a disgusting character. Reona always got her way, she had no sense of decency, and her presence was the most significant contributing factor that made Full Dive nearly unwatchable.

There was not a single moment in this series that was either fun, enjoyable, funny, charming, enduring, or worth a second of my time.

Keep in mind, 2021 was the year that gave us Ex-Arm, which was just an utter trainwreck. But that series didn’t even come close to pissing me off as this one did.

Since this review came out in September 2021, that means there are still the summer and fall seasons for me to watch. Be that as it may, if you want to know what I think might be a contender for one of the worst anime of the year, you’re looking at it.

Full Dive was f@%&ing awful.

Final Thoughts

You won’t gain a damn thing if you watch this show; you will only lose

From one of the least likable casts of characters ever to a premise that broke apart the second you put an ounce of thought to it, this series was trash.

And do you want to know something? I only chose to watch this show because the title grabbed my attention. Boy, do I regret my choices.

I won’t ask you to skip Full Dive: This Ultimate Next-Gen Full Dive RPG Is Even Sh-tier than Real Life!. No, instead, try to forget you ever came across it.

But these were just my thoughts. What are yours? Have you seen this series? How would you advise Full Dive: This Ultimate Next-Gen Full Dive RPG Is Even Sh-tier than Real Life!? Leave a comment down below because I would love to hear what you have to say.

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For Anime Hajime, I’m Odyssey, and I’ll see you next time.

1 comment

  1. I am with you. This anime wasn’t funny and yet ultimately had nothing to say or anything to gain from wading through the pain with these unlikable characters.

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