The .hack series (Now that the .hack//GNU remake is out)



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maryadavies

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I admit to being a newbie with this series. :) So much so, I am delaying buying the remake so I can play teh originals. (I think I said earlier that my brother has the first series of .hack games? And I can borrow them? Good.)

Anyway I decided to start from the beginning, since I own a working PS2 and my brother owns the first triad. I borrowed .hack//Infection from bro, I have the remake wishlisted. We'll see how it goes..Just played the first anime since his copies still have the anime disks.

Anyway! Anyone bought the remake, or such? Enjoying it? Or did you decide to do what I did, and start from the beginning?
 
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Sephiroth0812

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The first series actually is a quartet, lol, not a triad. ;)

//Infection
//Mutation
//Outbreak
//Quarantine

are the first four.
The accompanying anime (actually the story which lays the groundwork for the games) is //sign though, the anime episodes that come with these old games themselves (//Liminality) take place at the exact same time as the games in the outside world, one episode for each game.

I tried to get the remake of G.U. on Friday (EU release was given as the 3rd November) but the store didn't have it at all. Gotta try again on Monday.

One thing about the .hack-series itself though:
While its story is overaching throughout all the games, animes and even some Mangas and novels one may enjoy a single part of it easier than i.e. with KH as each "chapter" can also stand on its own.

Puzzling together the background lore and getting a whole picture by cruising through the different parts of the .hack Multimedia universe is a nice-to-have thingy, not entirely a must-have like KH often has.
 

maryadavies

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My bad on that, I guess I got trilogy on the brain! But I know my brother has the first series, and I mean to play 'em first. I may never get another chance. Those first four games are rare now a days, and really really hard to get your paws on legally. And I understand it's even RARER for people to find copies with the anime disks with them. (people are silly and often sell that anime separately, or threw it out or something)

Anyway I've also been watching the first animu since that's on CR (I'm not sure what regions they have that are licensed to stream these. I know a lot of their new back catalog of stuff they're adding lately has been from Funimation so the EU might be screwed there.) IF they do have the rights for your region, here's .hack//SIGN, here's .hack//Quantum, here's .hack//Roots, and here's .hack//Legend of the Twilight. So I basically got all the anime for it at my fingertips pretty much, since I do have access to a paid CR account.

Anyway I thought it was a good idea to start with the first series before I pounce on the remake. ^^ Maybe watch some of the anime along the way since I do have access to it. ^^
 
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Veevee

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Nice to see you getting into the .hack series. It's a fun ride.
I got into the .hack series through the manga, started with .hack//xxxx. Got the four games afterwards and I don't want to shittalk them but they are rather mediocre. Not exactly bad - but they're old and it shows. Couldn't push myself past the second, so I read the Light Novels instead. The writing style is pretty simple, but they are really good, especially the AI Buster story. I highly recommend Another Birth and AI Buster. For manga, read the Legend of twilight manga, the anime is ... weird and non-canon, the manga is canon afaik. G.U.+ is also worth looking at.
For the anime ... the most important one for background infos is probably Sign but sadly it's just painful to watch because it's incredibly slow-paced. I still recommend watching it for the info though :/ maybe also liminality, never watched that till the end.

So, summarized, I'd recommend:
Light novels AI Buster and Another Birth
Manga: Legend of the twilight and G.U.+
Anime: Sign and maybe Liminality (Roots if you want to dig in G.U. territory, despite that, I found roots terribly boring)

The rest of the series is rather ... mediocre. I don't want to say that for example the xxxx-Manga doesn't have its charm, but it's rather rushed and deviates from the game a lot. There are also a few more manga, like 4koma or something else with a yellow cover of which I forgot the name but it was not worth reading anyway. .hack//Quantum and Sekai no Mukou weren't exactly original either, so I'd advise you to start with the raisins of the series and get to the muddy milky waters later if you are still hungry.
 

maryadavies

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I'll keep that in mind Veevee. Been having a blast with Infection btw, we'll see how I feel about them as I go though the series. It's kinda a blessing that we have so much of the .hack anime available on CR, at least for streaming in the US. (Again, not sure what regions Crunchy has for those series.) They prolly did it to promote the GU remake, at least that's my theory.

It's also a blessing that 'Neko went nuts and got all the games when you could still buy them new. 'Neko's thing about collecting games tho; none of his were left in the shrink wrap. He's all "If you don't play it, then why did you buy it, you dweeb!" so all of his games have been played at least once. He keeps them in excellent shape though for all that. ^^
 

Oracle Spockanort

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The AI Buster novel is actually the origin of my online name "lycorismoon" on like everything. Used to be my name here, in fact. Only some of you old people will remember. xD I always disliked what happened to Lycoris in the novel and preferred her over Aura in .hack//sign (but love Aura in IMOQ)

I started the series with .hack//sign as a wee kid, then found out about IMOQ from my .hack//sign DVDs and a Cinematech episode on G4TechTV and fell in love. Liminalty haunted me forever because of how interesting it was.

.hack//G.U. was really where I felt I could understand the series since I was older.

All I can hope for now is a remaster of IMOQ with a ton of QOL updates because that series didn't age well, sadly.

I'm really happy you are enjoying the series, Eli! <3

My favorite order of the series is:

.hack//sign
IMOQ & Liminality & Gift (lol)
AI Buster (maybe AI Buster 2) & Another Birth (like Veevee said)
Legend of the Twilight
The Terminal Disk that accompanies G.U.
.hack//G.U. series
.hack//Roots (boring but informative. also the voices really take you out of it)
.hack//G.U. novels (they follow the original script of the game series and not the actual games)
.hack//G.U. Trilogy (the movie is not necessarily canon but features some good and bad changes to the plot of the games)
.hack//G.U. Returner (not necessarily canon but it is an enjoyable watch)

Anything beyond that really up to you because I really dislike most of everything else they released...

But they seem to be developing a new game (and I'm praying it ignores everything that came after G.U.)
 

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I've never played the games, but I'm very interested in getting the remake.
 

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I've never played the games, but I'm very interested in getting the remake.
Well, I've seen the manga and watched the series for G.U. and I'm pretty convinced to say that you can play the games without having any prior knowledge of the series. G.U. is part of the big thing but features different characters who are loosely linked to the rest of the franchise by the online world (which is also quite different to the original one featured in prior entries). As far as I know there are a few interactions that hint on previous occurings but it's not a must-know, more like a "oh, they're still together, nice" kind of moment. So, go and have a good time with the game! :)
 
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