The main draw for Anime Saimoe 2012 is out. More below the cut
The Main Draw
The main draw its out and after two prelims these are the participants that booked the spot for this year’s AST 2012. Unlike in ISML, Saki is doing consistently great in AST with a record breaking 43 characters in for them into the main draw. However numbers does not mean champion for them as proven in AST 2009 and AST 2010. Nevertheless they are the group/series to beat this time. I wouldn’t say there are as invincible as PMMM was last year though.
Moving on, let’s take a look in the 8 groups and some predictions of the block finals from me now.
Miyanaga Saki, Hasegawa Kobato, Kataoka Yuki and Amae Koromo is the four contestants to beat in this group. Perhaps Tomoka Minato too but I think Amae will win her for their side of the bracket. Amae should be able to win her group final setting up a block final match up with either Saki or Kobato. Kobato should be able to edge out Saki as the resistance for this block and I wouldn’t be surprised if she wins the block too. Amae may be one of Saki ace but I think she does not have enough to reach the Top 8 again if she faces Kobato.
Prediction: Kobato VS Amae , Kobato Wins.
This is indeed an epic draw as Onjouji Toki, arguably one of Saki’s ace now will most probably face Yuru Yuri’s Akari Akaza. Both posted monster stats during Prelims and for Toki her side of the bracket provide almost no resistance save for perhaps Isumi. There is no Mikoto this time to stop her time manipulating powers and she should sail to the block finals. Akari will face some resistance from Azusa facing their recent revival due to the movie and also perhaps Mei Misaki or Yozora Mikazuki too. She should be able to fend off the resurgent Azusa to book a final spot with Toki. Toki should be able to edge out Akari but it will be a close fight so it would swing either way.
Prediction: Toki VS Akari, Toki Wins.
This is quite a weak group in my opinion with little aces/heavyweights in this group except strong second place finisher Kyouko in the Prelims. Astarotte and Erica are last year’s Quarterfinalist and may be strong contenders to take this block. One of them should face Toshino Kyouko of Yuru Yuri. Kyouko should be able to prevail given her strong Prelim performance making into the Top 8.
Prediction: Kyouko VS Erica, Kyouko Wins.
For D1 Mihoko should win her bracket outright since I think no girls on her side would be able to stop her. D2 is interesting though as a possible D2 Final between Louise and Nagi could happen. KugiRie fans would be forced to choose one as their representative against Kyapten. I think Nagi will edge out Louise and face Mihoko. Mihoko should be able to win her and enter Top 8 once again.
Prediction: Mihoko VS Nagi, Mihoko Wins.
Hinagiku should have no problem booking her Block Final spot but that cannot be say for E2. Prelim winner Matsumi Yuu will face strong challenge from Aisaka Taiga 2009 winner herself and also 2009 runner up Hirasawa Yui too. Yui may have fallen abit but she pose a challenge nevertheless. There should be a three way fight for the spot against Hinagiku and I think Yuu will prevail on the Saki wave. Charlotte will be another problem for Yuu but since Infinite has fallen abit Yuu should be able to win her setting up a Hayate vs Saki clash.
Prediction: Hinagiku vs Yuu, Hinagiku Wins.
This is this year’s group of death with 6 First Prelim first place finishers in the same group. SUBARA (Kirame Hanada) is indeed SUBARA as she is lucky enough to avoid the remaining 5 until her block finals which she should make it. Kuro, Ryuuka, Nyaruko, Chitanda and Ririchiyo will have to fight it out in this epic set up to face Kirame. Chitanda will most probably fall to Rirchiyo since she is weaker stats wise but do not forget her’s was the first prelim group and voters may not have started voting or get into the groove so early on while Ririchiyo’s was the 15th group. Nonetheless I would think they will fall to the winner from the 3 sided fight of Kuro-Nyaruko-Ryuuka. Saki faces a possible vote split and could give the strongest non Saki contender of this group an advantage to book her spot in the block finals. However I would think Kuro or Ryuuka could overcome that vote split and win narrowly in the 3 way fight. Who overcomes that is however any one guess as it is too close to call. In the end I would predict Saki take this Group of Death since even if Nyaruko wins (Beating two Saki strong contenders while doing so) Saki supporters will support Kirame to take her out eventually. However since its the Group of Death every thing is possible and I would be interested to see how it plays out.
Prediction: Kirame VS Kuro/Ryuuka, Kuro/Ryuuka Wins. OR Kirame vs Nyaruko, Kirame Wins.
Another Saki group of death with Ako and Nodoka being possible contenders to take this group. Momoko one of Sak’s weaker Ace also is in this group. Saki really screwed themselves hard even with all these draws pitting their Aces against each other even before QF. Nevertheless this could mean more Top 8 finishes for Saki. Nodoka should cruise her way to the block finals and so should Ako. Ika Musume may be the party wrecker for an all Saki block finals but Ako should be able to clear her way into the finals. Nodoka will prevail as always and enter Top 8 yet again for all 3 times in her appearance in Saimoe.
Prediction: Nodoka vs Ako, Nodoka Wins.
The last group see Shana attempting one last time on Saimoe glory after being kicked out in the first round last year by Yuuko of A Channel. There is no Yuuko this year to stop her and with Shana III Final it may be her best chance yet. Blockages exist in the form of Kuroyukihime (With the literal translation of Snow Black lol) and Poplar. Kuroyukihime should not be much of a problem since Accel World seem to be doing badly with Poplar a major problem. Shana should come out narrowly to face Kashiwazaki Sena of Haganai. Mio is not strong enough to stop Sena and neither is Kana too. Debutants always seem to have a advantage over veterans in Saimoe anyway. Hence I would think Shana will fail yet again to reach the finals thanks to Sena and bid her path to AST glory forever. She is indeed a consistent Saimoe heavyweight but it seems veterans are being swept aside by newcomers in the saimoe trend.
Prediction: Shana VS Sena, Sena Wins.
EVENTUAL TOP 8 PREDICTION
Hasegawa Kobato – Haganai
Onjouji Toki – Saki
Toshino Kyouko – Yuru Yuri
Fukuji Mihoko – Saki
Kastura Hinagiku – Hayate No Gotoku
Kirame Hanada – Saki
Haramura Nodoka – Saki
Kashiwazaki Sena – Haganai
If my predictions are correct we will see a repeat of last year’s QF where 4 contestants are from the same series. I would think 1 slot is more or less booked (Nodoka) with Hayate’s Nagi, Yuru Yuri’s Akari and Nyaruko possibly taking the privilege away from Mihoko, Toki and Kirame respectively. Saki will be the series to beat as stated but compared to PMMM they are much easier to defeat. Depending on the eventual Top 8 my prediction for this year champion will change. Yes predicting the champion may seem early now but since the Main draw is out there is no harm trying anyway.
PREDICTION FOR SAIMOE GLORY:
Hasegawa Kobato of Haganai
AST always seem to have a penchant for loli contestants anyway. Kobato not a bad prediction based on this haha. Well it’s early so it may change afterall so stay tune as AST 2012 finally rolls on 14th August after the London Olympics (12th August).