|Title screen of Muv-Luv Alternative|
Table of Contents
Muv-Luv (マブラヴ Mabu Ravu?) is a Japanese visual novel developed by Âge, which was originally released as an adult game for the PC in 2003. Consisting of two parts, Muv-Luv Extra (マブラヴ エクストラ) andMuv-Luv Unlimited (マブラヴ アンリミテッド), the first being in a peaceful setting of a classic high school romantic comedy while the second part (Unlimited) drags the protagonist into a post-apocalyptic parallel world where mankind fights for survival. A continuation called Muv-Luv Alternative (マブラヴ オルタネイティヴ) was released in 2006, which concludes Takeru’s storyline and was originally planned to be the “third part” of the game. All ages versions (with the adult content removed) were released for both games in 2006. Muv-Luv Alternative is one of the best-selling Visual Novels in Japan and this fame lead to the creation of many side stories, turning Muv-Luv into a mecha franchise with considerable size. Muv-Luv also has a number of manga adaptations and, as of 2012, an anime series Muv-Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse was made. The latter is an adaptation of the newest visual novel with the same name.
[To be continued...]
Being grown into a whole franchise, Muv-Luv has much available material in various forms of media. The situation is further complicated by the series’ usage of parallel universes. So there are 3 different worlds to note (and practically even more):
- Extra: A peaceful high school setting. While there are a few differences it’s very much like our modern world.
- Unlmited: Same date, a whole different world. Earth is invaded by the alien race called BETA and humans constantly fight for survival. Even before the aliens’ arrival the “Unlimited” world had a number of divergences from our own. Most of them are listed here.
- Alternative: When Takeru got back in time and decided to change the future, a new world with events different from Unlimited came into existence.
The actual list is longer and more confusing but I think this would be enough. So let’s list the available Muv-Luv media, already!
- Muv-Luv (Visual Novel consists of Extra and Unlimited, 2003, all-ages version in 2006, re-release in 2011)
- Muv-Luv Alternative (Visual Novel, the conclusion of the main series with the Alternative route, 2006, re-release in 2011)
- Muv-Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse (Visual Novel, 2013, side-story set in the Alternative world)
- Muv-Luv Alternative Chronicles (Visual Novels, 2008, collection of side stories set in the Alternative world)
- Muv-Luv Alternative: Atonement
- Muv Luv Alternative: Succession
- Muv Luv Alternative Chronicles 01 (Visual Novels, 2010, collection of various side-stories)
- Muv-Luv Unlimited: The Day After Episode 00 (set after the ending of the Unlimited route)
- Muv-Luv Alternative: Chicken Divers (set during the Objective 21 battle from Alternative)
- Muv-Luv Alternative: Rain Dancers (side-story about the European front)
- Muv-Luv Alternative Chronicles 02
- Muv-Luv Unlimited: The Day After Episode 01 (a whole new saga set after the events of Unlimited)
- Muv-Luv Alternative: Adoration (comedic side-story from the European front)
- Muv-Luv Alternative Chronicles 03
- Muv-Luv Unlimited: The Day After Episode 02 (continuation of Episode 01)
- Muv-Luv Alternative: Resurrection
- Muv-Luv Alternative: Schwartzesmarken (Light Novels, 2011-ongoing, tells the story of the East Germany’s 666th TSF Squadron during 1983)
- Muv-Luv Supplement (Visual Novel, 2004, fan disc which also contains a short after-story for Sumika’s route from Extra)
- Owarinaki Natsu, Towa Naru Shirabe (Visual Novel, 2009, comedic story implied to be set in the Alternative world)
- Haruko Maniax (Visual Novel, 2010, comedic side story with bits from Extra and Alternative)
- Tactical Surface Fighters in Action (series of short stories published in Hobby Japan, mostly they take place in the Alternative world)
- Muv-Luv Alternative (Manga, 2008-2012, some extra scenes and informations might be regarded canon)
- Muv-Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse (Light Novels, 2007-2009, continued in 2012-ongoing, most likely becoming non-canon with the release of the VN)
- Kimi ga Ita Kisetsu (Visual Novel, 1999 (re-released in 2011), earlier work which was implied to take place in the Extra world)
- Kimi ga Nozomu Eien (Visual Novel, 2001 (re-released in 2008), earlier work which was implied to take place in the Extra world)
- Akane Maniax (Visual Novel, 2002, could be considered the direct prequel of the Extra route)
- Artbooks, databooks, etc…
- Muv-Luv (Light Novels, 2006-2009, adaptation of the 3 original routes of the games)
- Muv-Luv (Manga, 2003-2004, adaptation of Sumika’s route from Extra)
- Muv-Luv: Unlimited (Manga, 2005-2007, adaptation of Meiya’s route from Unlimited)
- Ayu Mayu Gekijou (Anime OVA, 2008, comedy shorts occasionally parodying Muv-Luv)
- Ayu Mayu Alternative (Visual Novel, 2008, kind of a parody of Alternative)
- Muv-Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse (Visual Novel, 2007, promotional demo of the light novels)
- Muv-Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse (Anime series, 2012, adaptation of the light novels)
- Muv-Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse (Manga, 2010-2011, a more closer adaptation of the light novels)
- Many more
… What’s up with these canon levels?
Standing in the Battledome
Muv-Luv is a relatively powerful Mecha fiction. Humans in this verse are roughly comparable to their counterparts in Gundam. Their mechs (TSF) can fly at supersonic speed (with skilled pilots reacting/fighting at hypersonic+ speeds) with weapons being at multi city block level firepower. They lack energy weapons (for now... told to be using them in 5 years) but can resist heats up to town level (until the anti-laser coating burns off). They are also often equipped with self-destruction devices (S-11) with city level destructive capacity which can bring change to the battlefield. Soviets also developed Espers with capabilities similar to Newtype pilots from UC Gundam. Unlike with most other fictions in the mecha genre, common vessels like tanks and battleships also benefit from the same technology. Artillery in general has multi city block to town level level concentrated firepower each and almost any important vessel is protected by better armor/anti-laser coating superior to TSFs. Muv-Luv also has a space fleet albeit they only exist to deliver orbital strikes and other kinds of support. Muv-Luv humanity also has a near-obsession with weapons of mass destruction (even surpassing Gundam here). The above mentioned S-11 devices are only comparable to their "tactical nukes" while actual strategic warheads are in the low island level. They also have an even more destructive weapon called the G-Bomb with at least island level DC or above. In an alternate reality the massed use of G-Bombs ruined the Earth and blew a good portion of the atmosphere and seas into space. Lastly, there's the XG-70 Susanoo, a mecha/flying fortress with its main weapon many times more powerful than G-Bombs and a forcefield that can withstand the same level of punishment.
BETA are of course no pushovers, either. Most BETA strains are about as large as TSFs and capable of physically competing with them. They also come in massive quantities, with a Phase 4 Hive holding few million creatures already (God save you inside a Phase 6 Hive or above, where you meet this amount of BETA in every corner). Speaking of Hives, these underground structures are ridiculously sturdy, with walls capable of tanking S-11 explosions point-blank. Anything but G-Bomb or massed use of strategic nukes are useless to destroy these. Aside from the numbers the BETA also has their dreaded anti-air defense called Laser Class. These can track hypersonic targets with ease and the Heavy Laser class outputting as much as 5.1 kilotons in a split-second (while its beams actually last for 12 seconds). There's also the new Laser Fort Class with energy output comparable to a G-Bomb. They are terribly dangerous and the only reason humans can fight back because the BETA even fails to recognize them as an enemy.
Worse, the BETA on Earth is just a really tiny splinter of the whole race. As it's been revealed there are 1037 number of Hives throughout the entire universe. Even by minimalistic calculations that means the combined weight of BETA exceeds the mass of the observable universe. How could they manage it is unknown. Same could be said for the true extend of capabilities of BETA. This later fact occasionally makes people put the entire BETA race against other classic Sci-Fi empires with varying results.
- And others...
- 00 Unit
- Alfred Walken
- Cryska Barchenowa
- Mana Tsukuyomi
- Meiya Mitsurugi
- Sagiri Naoya
- Sandek Jerzy
- Takeru Shirogane
- Yui Takamura
- Yuuya Bridges
- Carrier Class
- Destroyer Class
- Fort Class
- Grappler Class
- Heavy Laser Class
- Laser Class
- Laser Fort Class
- Soldier Class
- Tank Class
- Warrior Class
- A-6 Intruder
- A-10 Thunderbolt II
- F-4 Phantom
- F-15 Eagle
- F-22 Raptor
- SU-47 Berkut
- Type-00 Takemikazuchi
- XG-70 Susanoo
- Leopard 2A7I
- Yamato-class Battleship
- 1200mm Over-the-Horizon Cannon
- EML-99X Electromagnetic Induction Launcher
- S-11 SD-SYSTEM
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