I’ve been wanting to play Kantai Collection for some time but for some reason I have not played it until a few days ago.
I guess it’s because one has to win a ‘lottery’ and stuff in order to be able to play this popular free-to-play web browser game and I failed the lottery three times, but yeah, I succeeded on my fourth time, this time reading various sources on the web to prepare for it.
Now that I’m playing it, I gotta say this game has its charms. The game is similar to the smartphone card games I’ve played but it’s somewhat deeper and more complex.
Actually, rather than the game itself, what I want to talk about now is the manga Kantai Collection Itsuka Shizukana Umi De (Combined Fleet Girls Who Long For Peaceful Sea):
It’s up to volume 2 now, and the latest chapter can be read at ComicWalker.
I reviewed the volume 1 of this manga a while back, but I never understood the concept until now.
Basically, Kantai Collection is (mostly) about Japanese World War 2 ships, which all of them have been sunk. But after World War 2, Japanese Maritime Self Defense Force is formed and they build ships that still exist in present day. Unlike World War 2 ships, these JMSDF ships are more for maintaining peace. What’s interesting is that they name some of these ships after the Japanese World War 2 ships, even though they may not be of the same type. This is where the concept of the manga comes from.
So yes, the manga chapters try to make connection between the Japanese World War 2 ships and their ‘future reincarnation’ of JMSDF ships (with some liberties). Like how Souryuu, an Aircraft Carrier was rescued by submarines in her chapter and then she became submarine herself; the JMSDF Souryuu is a submarine. Also how Chiyoda rescued a submarine, therefore she changed from Seaplane Tender to Submarine Rescue Tender. And how Hibiki is sensitive to sound, therefore she changed from Destroyer to Ocean Surveillance Ship).
If you want to guess which ships are upcoming in the next chapters, you can take a look at this Wikipedia link:
The next featured characters should be among these ships.
So far this manga has featured Hyuuga (from Aviation Battleship to Helicopter Destroyer), Hibiki (from Destroyer to Ocean Surveillance Ship), Kongou (from Battleship to Guided Missile Destroyer), Souryuu (from Aircraft Carrier to Attack Submarine), Chiyoda (from Seaplane Tender to Submarine Rescue Tender), Jintsuu (from Light Cruiser to Destroyer Escort), Akizuki (still Destroyer), Ashigara (from Heavy Cruiser to Guided Missile Destroyer).
Looking at the list, I’ve got a feeling that this manga tops at 3 volumes. There are Shimakaze, Tenryuu, Asashio, Atago, and more, but I think coming up with the stories that don’t feel the same and not superfluous are hard. The list is also missing the famous ones such as Fubuki (closest is Shirayuki), Akagi, Kaga, Nagato, Yamato etc.
Also Tenryuu is technically already featured in the first chapter. The JMSDF Tenryuu is a Training Support Ship, and in the first chapter, Tenryuu is depicted of training other destroyers.