After Monty Oum (Haloid, Dead Fantasy) was hired by Rooster Teeth to do some pretty kick ass CG work on Red vs. Blue, he also got to work on his own project called RWBY. RWBY can best be described; if anime fans wanted to make an anime with a sprinkle of Monty Oum. I decided to dedicate an afternoon watching through the whole first season since it’s all available on Youtube.
Initially I was very much repulsed by the style of animation. It’s not that great, and the art style makes everything look flat. The animation is serviceable in RvB as it’s mainly fight scenes but there are some areas that just seem unfinished or rushed. The voice work has improved from the trailers and was fairly consistent throughout. I have to keep on reminding myself that RWBY was made by a small team. When I watch RWBY I hold my expectations on par with other anime or at the very least RvB. So when something is wrong it really does stand out to me.
RWBY is a short series. Each episode is two parts of a whole, with each episode being around 5 minutes each. Having to wait for each episode to air once a week must have been difficult due to half of them ending on a cliff hanger. Considering the release schedule this was a good idea. The series felt engaging and you would always be excited for the next week to roll round.
Being 16 episodes long, it does seem a bit too short to consider a DVD and Blu-Ray (or Black Ray) release. I thought the first season ended rather abruptly. I was enjoying the flow, the characters, the world and then it ends. It felt more like a mid-season finale more than an actual finale making the whole season feel a bit truncated.
The whole anime feels like a sister series to Soul Eater which is also based in a high school and focusses on weapon combat. The first season introduces an element called Dust but this goes largely unexplored so I assume its like Materia from Final Fantasy VII.
Summing up RWBY in a sentence I would say it was Soul Eater headed by Monty Oum with the Dust taken from His Dark Materials.