I couldn't believe myself when I found out but it's real! Thanks to Nanami's World I discovered that, since 2009, a manga series for Suikoden I as well as another manga series for Suikoden II are being releashed!
Suikoden ( 幻想水滸伝 Gensō Suikoden) is a classic series of RPG videogames. Fuck Final Fantasy, especially talking about Suikoden II most RPG fans can tell you this is one of the best RPGs ever created and even now it surpases most modern RPGs in graphics, plot, enternaiment, and playing system.
There were mangas for the other games but never for the first two! The first game is from 1995 and the second from 1998, why would they releashe the manga version in 2009? Japan is crazy but I don't mind because the first two Suikoden games are some of my very favourite videogames ever! (actually, I know pretty well why they are releashing these mangas now, I'll talk about that later)
So, let's get started with the review! I bought three tomes from YesAsia, the ones releashed so far:
-Suikoden / Tome 1
-Suikoden / Tome 2
-Suikoden II / Tome 1
Both the Suikoden I manga and the Suikoden II manga are by the artist Yu Hijikata and are being releashed slowly, at the same time. I wanted to put a link to the artists but didn't find his website or any other info, but it's the same artist from the Valkyrie Profile manga (another classic RPG) . The tomes are 160 pages long, more or less, and come with a map of the Suikoden world, a tablet with the 108 starts of Destiny and other stuff.
COVERT ART, THE FIRST TOME OF EACH MANGA
As you can see, the cover art is very beautiful: good anatomy, cool poses, great colouring, good layout design for the covers... the first pages of each manga have a couple of coloured pages too, that are equally beautiful and reminiscent of the artwork seen in the games. I'll let you some examples here before getting to the black and white pages:
Now with the actual story and black and white pages. The anatomy is not bad, on the contrary is pretty decent most of the time and the fighting scenes have really cool effects and movements. Sometimes, especially when it comes to bulky guys faces, the faces look a bit too strange XD And some of the young, teen guys in this manga (like Luc, Ted, Tir McDohl, Ryou etc.) look really girly, I was kind of a bit disappointed with Tir at first because not only he looks girly, he actually acts very girly and childish too... then I realized it's just because it's the begining and he rapidly started to man-up and mature by the end of the tomes, ha ha ha. As said, most of the drawings are really cute, maybe too cute for a manga in which thousands of people are going to die XD
Let's see some examples of the first tome of the Suikoden I manga!
On the left, Black the dragon and the heroes. On the right, Luc (told you he looked girly XD)
Leknaat on the right; on the left, McDohl, Ted and Gremio arriving at her place. As you can see, not only the characters look beautiful but also the backgrounds and illumination!
Let's go now with examples of the Suikoden II manga, the author is the same as I said so the style is pretty much the same, so let's show some "awesomeness" from two of the most charismatic heroes in all the saga... of course, I am talking about Viktor and Flik!
They are cool, they are strong... and they are adorable. Look at Viktor at that last panel XD
Let's not forget about the others! Luckily for Joey, he managed to look manlier than Ryou and Tir XD Look at those backgrounds, they are cool, so loyal to the source material!
Well, Luca Blight looks as mad as usual, doesn't him X_D He's and awesome bastard, and he looked damm sexy in the illustrations of the novels and in Suikogaiden... let's see if we get some sexyness in these mangas too XD
I tried not to spoil too much with the pics... If you are interested, I found scanlations (scans with English translation) of the first tome of Suikoden II here as for the Suikoden I manga, Nanami's World said they are scanlating both tomes too. As for "yaoi fangirls" who won't fucking read a thing unless there are some hot guys they can pair up, there is more than plenty of bromance in the Suikoden series and a consecrated yaoi fandom. Like, seriously XD
It hasn't been too long since I discovered there is a Breath of Fire IV manga, and now these Suikoden I and Suikoden II mangas... Japan is releashing lots of new stuff based on classic, popular videogames lately, and it's probably because of the japanese videogame market crisis. On one hand I am happy because I always wanted material based on my favourite retro games (I wish someone would make a Vandal Hearts manga lol) but on the other hand it's such a pity no one would releashe new stuff beyond Devil May Cry or new RPGs beyond the Final Fantasy shit... though it seems lately the Atelier series is regaining fans and sales with the lastest Atelier Totori for Playstation 3, as well as other sagas, but they still are already popular series...
So yeah, this is long enough and I wasted much more time than I should have X_D See you guys!