Aoki Hagane no Arpeggio: Ars Nova – Episode 1 Review / First Impressions

Aoki Hagane no Arpeggio: Ars Nova – Episode 1 Review / First Impressions

First Impressions:

Futuristic Sci-Fi style anime with humanoid alien computers who talk and pilot battleships to control the oceans and keep humans from communicating or using the sea with a mystery element, who are these aliens? people? and Why?
Basic Story Line:

In the year 2039, a fleet of Fog loaded with super weapons suddenly appear all over the world. Without the ability to withstand this fleet, humanity was defeated and could no longer travel the seas or even communicate.

17 years after the devastating naval war, Chihaya Gunzou and his friends manage to take command of a Fleet of Fog submarine and rename it I-401. Together with Iona, they take on the Fleet of Fog.


The series takes a few minutes to get started, then this pretty young lady Iona comes and finds our mail hero Gunzou.
Iona is actually the ships computer in humanized form which is an interesting part of this series…

Arpeggio of Blue Steel Ep 1 -

It seems Iona doesn’t remember anything, she has been reprogrammed or similar, she knows how to run the ship and that she must meet with Gunzou who becomes her captain but how this fog ship became to know Gunzou’s name or become humanity’s only hope against the fog is completely unknown.

Arpeggio of Blue Steel Ep 1 -

As this ship, Gunzou  and Iona take the ship out of the secret human base/port and escape the navy attack not understanding that the ship and its current crew of 2 are actually not the enemy.

Arpeggio of Blue Steel Ep 1 -

The episode skips around, you don’t know when or how the rest of the crew end up on board but you may recognise some of them as they are the same people he used to hang around with at school.

In this first episode we also get to see some action though its over quick! A little torpedo dodging and shield use and an attack on a Fog ship with a surprisingly interesting torpedo.

Arpeggio of Blue Steel Ep 1 -

It seems the crew are treated as run always or criminals by some of humanity however they are attempting to help humanity against the Fog and this mission was to help launch a communication satellite which was a success simply due to their work.Arpeggio of Blue Steel Ep 1 -


The introduction of the characters was kind of short and sweet, so in the first episode we get a nice balance of story line, history of how they got to the point they are at and a little bit of action.

At this point you don’t really know enough about any of the characters to start rooting for them, though the crew look quite entertaining and full of character which I hope they expand on in the future episodes.

The enemy’s of the series are also introduced right at the end, below Takao is the anthropomorphic/computer avatar of the Takao Class Heavy Cruiser, a Fog Ship and seems keen to take on Iona who is dubbed as a traitor. We also get to see two others a blond Fog ship’s Avatar who highlights they are only their to follow orders, but at this point we don’t know who’s and a odd brown haired girl who happens to be playing a piano? Which gives the impression we have at least 3 big battles to get through in this 12 episode series.

Arpeggio of Blue Steel Ep 1 -

The animation of the series is quite smooth though the general overtone of the series are dark except within the shots of the crew on the ship or in school which seems to brighten up. I quite liked the animation of the action part when it came to some of the ships weapons and shields these parts were alight with colour which stood out on the darker background and looked really good.

Character development of the first episode could have been better, we know next to nothing about the main crew and very little about our main character.

Arpeggio of Blue Steel Ep 1 -

Personally I think this series has a lot of potential and I’m looking forward to watching more of this series.


7/10 (good)

What do you think?