Hayate no Gotoku!’s Sanzen’in Nagi put an end to Seitokai no Ichizon’s Shiina Mafuyu’s impressive run with a dominating win to open the Quarterfinals of Anime Saimoe Tournament 2010. The win was a milestone for Nagi as it was her fifteenth all-time win, as well as the 51st all-time for Hayate no Gotoku!, putting both in solo second in the Saimoe record books. This also marks the second semifinal appearance for Nagi, who led from the get-go in the highly-anticipated match as Mafuyu never got her rhythm.
The next match features 2009 quarterfinalist Amae Koromo (Saki) against Saten Ruiko (To Aru Kagaku no Railgun) and the winner will play Nagi in the Semifinals.
1st | 721 votes | Sanzen’in Nagi @ Hayate no Gotoku!!
2nd | 531 votes | Shiina Mafuyu @ Seitokai no Ichizon
And there we have it. Frankly I was disappointed with the quality of the match since it didn’t live up to Quarterfinal standards. Seitokai no Ichizon faction, did you even try? :< Oh well, after inspiring victories by Mafuyu, clock finally struck twelve for her Cinderella story. Actually I expected Nagi to win this match, but I didn’t expect it to be so much of a styling for Nagi. Low vote totals, and she just made it look easy. This should’ve been much closer, but well, just as planned with Nagi. Can’t be disappointed with her moving closer to “Redemption End” can’t I?
Next match, here we go.
Quarterfinal Preview: Saten v Koromo
How Saten got here:
- Posted the second most impressive performance in the preliminaries in terms of vote percentage (behind Mikoto) to easily win her prelim group
- Delivered the most savage beating of the tournament so far – a 452 vote rout in R1.
- Survived a close call against Mugi, had to gut it out in the end despite comboing with Mikoto in that voting day
- Rallied to defeat one of the winningest Saimoe characters and former finalist Fate Testarossa
Doing it the easy way was Koromo:
- Posted the third most impressive performance in the prelims (again with regard to vote %) to win her group
- Survived an early scare against Nozomi but pulled away eventually – mind you, this was her closest match so far
- Crushed Kuroko mainly because of combo help from Kataoka Yuuki in round two
- Got the lowest votes received in round three among winners, but had the biggest vote% in the same round by coasting to an easy win over Kurimu and Nanako
So just like last year (with the exception of that epic match against HnG’s Izumi), Koromo is in cruise control again – until she ran into the eventual finalist Yui in the quarters. Saten and Koromo both had great prelim run. Saten though has faced tougher opponents in Rounds Two and Three, as compared to Koromo’s accomplishments.
How Koromo will win – numbers say that Saki is the stronger faction, in fact Saki has scored two major victories over Railgun this tourney – the one-vote nailbiter by Hisa over Uiharu, and the Koromo rout of Kuroko. But I doubt it will really matter now. Koromo also has the more “natural” moe (okay, this shit is hard to explain, but those who are following moe tournaments long enough should get what i mean) – loli appearance and those numerous hnggg-inducing moments in her appearances in Saki should get her a lot of following, so that’s how she will be getting her votes. Also, back to back top eights for this girl, (together with Nodoka) – a feat only achieved previously by Naegino Sora and Hiiragi Tsukasa [curiously, like Tsukasa she is voiced by Fukuhara Kaori] is quite a feat (note: back to back) – so you have an idea that she has the strength – but the strength to defeat a surging level zero? I’m skeptical…
And this is my segueway to go to how Saten will win – faction power is quite there on par with Saki, that’s what I like to believe. Being VA’d by Itou Kanae helps her a bit. And of course what got me cheering for her in the early stages of the tournament was this – she’s the underdog of her own show, how could you not root for a level zero trying so hard to take it to the next level? So it’s in a way in contrast to Koromo (a prodigy). So there are quite a lot of angles to apporach this match.
Combining all what’s said and done I still can’t be sure of who to predict, but ultimately sided with Saten to win it – underdog story (ironically she’s the favorite in all her matches, except maybe the Fate one – how about that); better resume than Koromo in terms of “tournament kills” and I think she’s riding the momentum with her string of solid wins. Also she’s the fresher face in this tournament.
But really, it’s hard to tell how strong Koromo really is. Maybe stronger than what I give her credit for (after all she lost only to Yui). But I just don’t buy it at this point.
While I’m fine with either character winning – how convenient, eh, it helps that my good ends are stacked, I’m gonna be supporting Koromo in this one in her toughest match yet. She has always been high in my list since she entered the fray last year, and while I appreciate Saten’s role in Railgun, I just can’t get eough of Koromo’s moe. And mind you she has a story too (admittedly Saten’s is better, but eh this is SaiMOE) Anyway, enough rant on that. If she wins, all cool, if Saten gets it as expected, It’s also fine.
Feels good man.
Lastly, match poster: “Over (the Sky) and Under (the Sea)” “Heaven or Hell”, etc.