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Home > NEWSThere is very little preaching and plenty of living in Blade and Soul

There is very little preaching and plenty of living in Blade and Soul

Blade & Soul is an action-adventure series based on the popular video game of the same name. The show is set in a world of swords, sorcery, and high-powered assault rifles. Yes, assault rifles. Logic be damned, this world has firearms. Anyway, the series focuses on Alka, an assassin for the Clan of the Sword. The Clan of the Sword is a gifted and feared guild, whose skills with the blade are talked about in hushed whispers. Those who encounter their ranks rarely live to tell the tale, while those who do make it out alive are too afraid to speak of their experiences.

Blade & Soul has a fairly generic plot, seen numerous times in films and other anime. The master or leader is killed and a top student vows revenge. So what makes Blade & Soul different? It really comes down to the characters, the relationships, and a reflection on life and what it means to be human and to deal with pain and struggle. Being an assassin, Alka has murdered many people throughout her life, and never really stopped to ask why she was killing these people. Like many of us, it isn't until later down he road when we can sit and reflect, or when we learn new things we didn't know at the time, that we realize mistakes we made and how our actions affected the lives of so many others.

Dropping a small pebble into a still lake causes ripples far and wide. We also learn that, people tend to want the best for us, and it isn't until later on, as we experience life, that we're able to reflect and see that others had good intentions for us even if we didn't believe it at the time. Blade & Soul provides an opportunity for the viewer to reflect on their own lives in the midst of a revenge storyline. Blade and Soul does not support the use of game pad unlike the Phantasy Star Online 2. Maybe the reason behind this is that the key combinations needed to launch a particular attack won't fit in the game pad.

The story itself is a rather straight forward tale of duty and regret, Friendship and the bitter taste of revenge. I loved how they managed to paint a tragic figure out of Alka and then allow her to help not just herself, but the ones that were hurt the most by her action find redemption in living for humanities sake. I know it is a little preachy and there are plenty of average anime that preach way too much. In Blade and Souls case there is very little preaching and plenty of living through the tough time that ends up being the teacher. Unfortunately there are plenty of innocents that find tragic ends on Alka's path to humanity and all too many sad stories haunt her.

One look around forums and comment fields on other sites shows that the average player over here isn't interested in PvP. Quite the opposite, as Western MMO players and gamers in general sans the FPS and MOBA crowds tend to avoid PvP like the plague. There is a reason Blade & Soul is treated like an eSport in some countries, and that reason is not because of its difficult dungeons and enthralling story. It's because of the game's heavy emphasis on world and arena PvP, both of which are the focus of daily quests among other things. Beating on other players (or avoiding them while doing the PvE aspects of PvP dailies) is an integral part of the Blade & Soul experience.

Thus, while Blood & Soul can be enjoyed on the surface as a dance between scantily clad, beautiful women fighting for their lives, it is also the struggle of one person dealing with the past and how to continue on with her guilt. Mistakes cannot be completely forgiven, but they can be endured and tempered into something stronger which will forge the way into a new tomorrow. If you have the resolve to stoke the fire and then quench what you have wrought, you will emerge with a keener edge which can cleave any misgivings you may now have and guard your future. Alka found that out the hard way, but in the end, she became a better person and an even truer friend.

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