I finished watching Arslan Senki and am wondering:
- How much of the manga did it cover?
- Are there any differences between the manga and the anime?
I finished watching Arslan Senki and am wondering:
I’m a great fan of Arslan Senki and read the novels in Japanese twice. Sorry it’s been almost 2 years since you posted your question, but I will answer all your doubts.
The anime took the art style from the second manga adaptation when telling the story of the novels. The anime character designs belong to Shingo Ogiso as well. The story itself was quickly taken directly from the novels as the only source as the anime caught up with the manga.
There were 19 chapters published when the anime started running (5th April) and also when it ended (27th September).
The first link corresponds to volume 3, which includes chapters 11-19 and was published in Japan on February 9, 2015.
The second link corresponds to volume 4, which includes chapters 20-27 and was released in Japan on October 9, 2015. It is important to note that the anime had already ended before this date though.
Just so that you know, episode 9 from the anime covers up to chapter 19 from the manga, and episode 10 covers up to chapter 23. So it would be something like that more or less.
After that point, episodes 10-25 from season 1 as well as all episodes from season 2 could not take the manga’s adaptation into account while adapting the novels as there was no manga to begin with. The manga’s pace is incredibly slow. Even now, 2018, it still hasn’t started dealing with what season 2 covered (the latest manga Chapter 57 is adapting the last part from novel 3, whereas the anime’s season 1 covers novels 1- 4).
I’ll explain this later in more detail, but the manga’s adaptation is faithful and respectful to the novel source material. The anime’s adaptation not so much.
The difference between the manga and the novels is minimal. The manga adapts the novels in a consistent and faithful way. The anime, however, is less faithful. Yet again, I’ll explain this later.
Now, these are the 2 issues that the OP has. I’ll explain all of them:
How much of the manga did it cover?
Are there any differences between the manga and the anime?
Those questions are answered in these points. I'm adding a few more details for context as well.
Arslan Senki is a Japanese novel series written by Yoshiki Tanaka. There are sixteen novels written between 1986 and 2017. A manga adaptation by Chisato Nakamura started running in 1990 and finished running in 1996. It had an original ending as it caught up with the novels. Because of its popularity, a second manga adaptation illustrated by Hiromu Arakawa debuted in 2013. An anime adaptation was made in 2015.
The novels are praised as a masterpiece in Japan, which is the reason they received adaptations in the first place and people kept up with them for 31 years. I would very strongly advise you to read the novels over every Arslan Senki adaptation. However, there is no official translation as of now, and not much content has been fan-translated for the past 31 years. So… if you don’t know Japanese, I recommend you read the second manga. It is the most faithful adaptation you’ll find, and it’s in English.
Depends on what you want to do and your situation.
-If you’ve just watched the anime and you want to read the novels (as I said, they’re regarded as a masterpiece) I would advise you to start from the very beginning. The novels are very long and complicated, so starting from the very first volume is the best option.
-If you can’t read the novels for language reasons and want to read the manga instead, I would advise you to start from chapter 19. The differences between manga and anime increase after chapter 19-20 (end of episode 9) and keep increasing ever since (for example, chapter 29 doesn’t exist in the anime).
-If you’ve read the manga and want to delve into the novels, you can start where you left off on the manga. Unlike the anime, the manga follows the original material quite faithfully. To further help you understand the overall situation, I’m also going to tell you what the current situation is. 2.2 Current situation The very first season of the anime covers novels 1-4. The anime caught up with the manga when only 3 manga volumes had been published. Those 3 manga volumes cover the first novel. The second anime season covers the last part of novel 4 (as in the novel, Andragoras's escape from the dungeon is written before the funeral in St. Emmanuel) as well as novels 5 and 6.
The manga currently has 57 chapters and is now in the middle of novel 3’s last chapter where Sam reunited with Kubard and convinced him to fight for Hilmes and it is just before Arslan circulated the manifesto all around Pars. As you can see, the manga has already covered (as of March 2018) half the novels seasons 1 and 2 from anime did. It took almost 5 years though.
You would most certainly do. The anime starts making more changes from the original novel source material after episode 10 from season 1, so I would suggest you start reading from chapter 19 or 20 (start of episode 10). This is obvious, but when the anime makes changes while adapting the novels, it also deviates from the manga’s faithful adaptation.
Anime: It has added quite a few scenes. Some of them seem to be very important, but don’t exist in the novels. For example:
And lack, among others, the following events from the novels:
("*" refers to scenes from parts of the story that have yet to be reached in the manga as it’s still behind the anime)
Whereas in the manga, all the events I remember that were added are just (Note: this list should be quite decent. Unlike the previous 2 ones, here I made a big effort to gather all the differences I remember having noticed when I read the manga):
And not much content from the novels has been cut down. Obviously, the novels will have more details, but the important events are told faithfully, and the stuff that gets removed is the kind that is unnecessary and overdetailed for a manga (the manga format is quite different from that of a novel). To name a few examples of the events that the manga didn’t include while adapting the novels:
** Refers to an event that Tanaka has stated to have happened, but it doesn’t appear in his novels. He tends to do this sometimes, and his words/messages add new canon material not mentioned in the novels themselves (sometimes these new details/facts said by Tanaka are actually included in the second manga’s adaptation). This time it was mentioned on 18th January 2018, where we get to know that situation I explained before and exactly how it happens. If you google 31年目のヤシャスィーン you can see it on nico video website, but you need to have an official account and it’s raw Japanese as no English subtitles exist. In that conference he also mentions unimportant stuff like the fact that he had already decided the ending even before the second half of the novels had started, that while writing dialogues he says them out loud to make sure it doesn’t sound weird, that Daryun is dressed in black because he was reading the historical and psychological novel The red and the Black…
Also, the manga has more violent scenes that are in the novels but the anime skipped, like:
Conclusions: The anime changes and skips events a lot, whereas the manga sometimes adds an element/detail to the story rather than change it. The manga adds very little, and when it does it is unimportant stuff, it doesn’t remove much content and it doesn’t change things, making the manga a good adaptation of the novels. The scenes and even dialogues have been following Tanaka’s original work.