I want to be both nice to Record of Lodoss War, along with being not-so-nice to it.
So, nice. First off, it is very pretty. This is the kind of cel animation that really pops when there’s some skill and budget behind it. It was definitely enjoyable to look at, and is really the main reason to watch this anime.
Related to that is that this is one of the only choices out there for Tolkienesque, Dungeons and Dragons-style high fantasy anime. Sometimes you can find low fantasy, sometimes you can find high fantasy that leads more comedically, and so on, but you’ll be hard-pressed to get them all together.
Now, not very nice. This series is about as cliched as you can get. I mean, there’s even an episode about how they need to fight the fire dragon of Fire Dragon Mountain. Yes, despite being basically anime versions of the D&D sessions of a bunch of sci-fi authors, that’s the best that they could come up with. There’s nothing I haven’t seen here a million times before, which leads me to wonder why I shouldn’t just go pick up a Tor novel or something. If you just HAVE to have your high fantasy in anime form, well I guess. At the very least, there is that great art. Just don’t expect anything creative.
Oh actually, there is also Wakamoto voicing a character named “Woodchuck.” So it’s got that going for it too.