Screenshot from the main menu of Fate/stay night video game.
|Genre||Action, Romance, Supernatural, Thriller|
Kadokawa Shoten (PS2)
|Genre||Eroge, Visual novel|
|Rating||18+ (PC), 15+ (PS2)|
|Platform||PC - KiriKiri engine|
|Released||January 30, 2004 (PC CD)
March 29, 2006 (PC DVD)
April 19, 2007 (PS2)
|Original run||December 26, 2005 – ongoing|
|Original run||January 6, 2006 – June 16, 2006|
|Released||January 23, 2010|
Fate/stay night (フェイト/ステイナイト Feito/sutei naito ) is a Japanese adult visual novel game created by Type-Moon, which was originally released on January 30, 2004, for the PC. It has been adapted into an anime television series, which was animated by Studio Deen and aired between January 6, 2006, through June 16, 2006.
The official announcement and teaser trailer of the anime were first shown at the Rondo Robe 2005 "-Gate to Date-" event in Japan on June 26, 2005, and a curtain-raiser DVD was released in Japan during November 2005. An all-ages version of Fate/stay night, titled Fate/stay night Réalta Nua, was released for the PlayStation 2 on April 19, 2007, and features the seiyū from the anime series. The series has been adapted into a manga series, which began serialization in the monthly Shōnen Ace magazine.
Fate/stay night chronicles a two-week period in the life of Shirō Emiya, an amateur mechanic who attends a school named Homurabara Gakuen in Fuyuki City. Ten years ago, Shirō was caught in a massive fire that incinerated his parents and consumed a large portion of the city; as he was dying, an enigmatic man discovers and treats him. This man, Kiritsugu Emiya, decides to adopt him, though the two maintain a distant relationship because of Kiritsugu's frequent departures from Fuyuki City. One moonlit night, Kiritsugu and Shirō had a discussion outside of their home, and Shirō discovers a fact about his father that Kiritsugu was actually a mage.
Through their conversation, Shirō learns of his foster father's failed life ambition to become a "Hero of Justice" (正義の味方 Seigi no Mikata ), a guardian of mankind who could protect the weak and innocent. Touched by Kiritsugu's conviction, Shirō affirms to his foster father that he intends to devote his life to achieving that distant ideal, much to Kiritsugu's chagrin. To do this, Shirō pleads with a begrudging Kiritsugu to teach him sorcery (魔術 Majutsu ); but being born without the capabilities of a magus, Shirō proves to be talentless in almost all the fundamental sorcerous disciplines.
Kiritsugu warns his son that the life of a sorcerer is one that leads to destruction, but if he is truly set on benefiting people, he should apply his knowledge in secret and hone his craft in private. After Kiritsugu dies, Shirō becomes frustrated with his progress, feeling inadequate about his good deeds through sorcery and is unsure of how to orient his future to contribute more.
Unknown to Shirō, Fuyuki City is the setting for a secret and violent war among competing magi. For the past two centuries, seven sorcerers have gathered and engage in a Battle Royale, each gambling his or her own life to obtain the Holy Grail, a legendary chalice capable of granting wishes. The past four Holy Grail Wars have typically occurred every sixty years, with the most recent concluding a decade ago, but the fifth war has started prematurely.
Each of the sorcerers, better known as Masters, is aided by one of the seven summoned spiritual familiars known as Servants, who are the reincarnations of legendary souls from all across time. These resurrected Epic Spirits (英霊 Eirei ), possess superhuman characteristics and wield powerful artifacts or abilities called Noble Phantasms (宝具 Hōgu ). A Noble Phantasm's hidden abilities may be released by invoking its true name, but casual brandishing of a Noble Phantasm is best avoided, for symbolic Noble Phantasms usually belie a Servant's identity, diminishing that Servant's competitive advantage. Specific legends may be summoned with the aid of catalysts, which are artifacts, ideas, or experiences similar or of value to the desired Servant. Only one Servant can be summoned in each war from one of seven classes: Saber, Archer, Lancer, Berserker, Rider, Assassin, and Caster.
As only astral entities (i.e. Servants) are physically capable of retrieving the Holy Grail, Master and Servant are forced to cooperate. Masters control Servants with three Command Mantra (令呪 Reiju ), which are crystallized miracles issued by the Holy Grail that manifest on a Master's body. When activated, Command Mantra permit a Servant to accomplish an incredible feat, or alternatively provide Masters with the authority to issue an irrevocable and absolute order to a Servant. When all three Command Mantras are used up, Servants are no longer obliged to serve their Masters, and as such, may freely choose to turn upon their ex-partner. In the event of a Master's demise, a Servant may choose to bind him or herself to another Master; if a Servant is slain, a Master may ally with a wayward Servant or pursue sanctuary with the Holy Grail War's impartial supervisor, who is traditionally a delegate of the Roman Catholic Church.
The Holy Grail materializes fully only when there is one Servant left standing; therefore, it is not necessary to vanquish Masters in order to win the war. However, as many Servants possess powerful Noble Phantasms and are grueling to defeat, many participants have chosen instead to eradicate Masters, who are responsible for maintaining a Servant's presence through the supplication of Mana.
After cleaning his school's kyūdō (archery) dojo late one night, Shirō stumbles upon two Servants, Archer and Lancer, battling in the school courtyard. To avoid compromising the war's secrecy, Lancer hunts down and pierces Shirō's heart with a spear. For an unknown reason, Shirō's classmate, Rin Tōsaka, uses an heirloom filled with concentrated magic, Mana (魔力 Maryoku ), to resuscitate him. Shaken and dazed, Shirō returns home only to be assaulted a second time by Lancer. Shirō weakly defends himself against Lancer, but is soon overwhelmed by the powerful Servant's attack, and is sent flying into his shed's storage room. Cornered, Shirō prepares for the worst; but before Lancer can inflict another fatal blow, a young woman outfitted in alabaster armor blocks Lancer's spear. After driving Lancer away from Shiro, she introduces herself as Saber.
As with Tsukihime, the character base in Fate/stay night is extremely comprehensive and expansive, with characters possessing varied and extraordinary abilities.
The popularity of the Fate/stay night visual novel has launched a media franchise consisting of a sequel, spin-offs, an anime adaptation, a light novel, and a manga series. A film adaptation is currently in production. In addition, various forms of dōjinshi dedicated to characters or themes in Fate/stay night have been created by fans, including fanart, amateur manga, and fan-developed video games.
The Fate/stay night franchise began as a visual novel video game created by Type-Moon which premiered in Japan on January 30, 2004. It was Type-Moon's first commercial work, following their transition from a dōjin soft visual novel group. An all-ages version of Fate/stay night, entitled Fate/stay night Réalta Nua, was released for the PlayStation 2 on April 19, 2007. Fate, Unlimited Blade Works, and Heaven's Feel are the three branching storylines found within the game. Each diverge at certain points, and, depending upon player interaction, will end in one of several possible ways. The Fate scenario features Saber as the main heroine. In Unlimited Blade Works, Rin Tōsaka is the main female lead but the storyline focuses around her Servant, Archer. Heaven's Feel expands on the dark history of Sakura Matō. The plot of the anime series is an amalgam of the three game scenarios, though it heavily favors the events of Fate over the other two.
On October 28, 2005, Type-Moon released a sequel to Fate/stay night, entitled Fate/hollow ataraxia. Regarded more as a fan disc and a side-story rather than a serious sequel, its plot is set half a year after the events of Fate/stay night and features new characters such as Avenger, Bazett Fraga McRemitz, and Caren Ortensia, alongside returning characters such as Shirō Emiya and Rin Tōsaka.
At the 2008 AOU show in Japan, Capcom in conjunction with Cavia and Eighting debuted a fighting game based on the franchise called Fate/Unlimited Codes. The game was released in the arcades and had an exclusive PlayStation 2 release on December 18, 2008. A pre-order version was also available which includes a limited edition Saber Lily figure. Capcom will also release a PlayStation Portable version titled Fate/unlimited codes Portable on June 18, 2009. A North American version (digital download only, not UMD) of this game was released on September 3, 2009.
A dungeon RPG adaptation of the series was announced in Famitsu and is produced by Image Epoch and Marvelous Entertainment titled Fate/Extra. The game is an alternate remake of Fate/stay night, but has an updated plot, different gameplay features and different character designs, especially for Saber and Caster. Players take on the role of an unnamed male or female character that the player chooses to be one of seven chosen masters and control servants Saber, Archer or Caster. The staff involved are dōjin artist Huke of Supercell, Takashi Takeuchi from Type-Moon for the character design supervision, Kazuya Niinō (7th Dragon) as the producer, while Shuetsu Kadowaki (Luminous Arc 2) is the director. The game will be released on March 18, 2010 for the PlayStation Portable in both regular and limited editions. The limited, pre-order edition includes a Saber Figma figure from the game itself and a visual book.
On November 22, 2006, Type-Moon announced a new installment in the Fate/stay night franchise, entitled Fate/Zero. Fate/Zero is a prequel to Fate/stay night, stressing the events of the 4th Holy Grail War and how its consequences affected the 5th Holy Grail War. In contrast to Fate/stay night, Fate/Zero is a series of light novels instead of a visual novel, and will be told in a third person narrative that follows the actions of multiple characters. The first volume was released on December 12, 2006, and is a collaboration between Type-Moon and fellow developer Nitroplus. The second volume was released on March 31, 2007. The third volume was released on July 27, 2007. The fourth and final volume was released on December 29, 2007, along with the Fate/Zero Original Image Soundtrack "Return to Zero".
The Fate/stay night manga, illustrated by Nishiwaki Datto, began serialization in the manga magazine Shōnen Ace, published by Kadokawa Shoten, on December 26, 2005. It is an adaption of the Fate/stay night visual novel, rather than the anime. In contrast to the anime, the manga focuses solely on the Unlimited Blade Works scenario of the game (albeit with slight deviations), and has refrained from pooling story elements from the sister scenarios, Fate or Heaven's Feel. Ten bound volumes have been released in Japan.
The Fate/stay night anime series aired between January 6, 2006, and June 16, 2006, containing 24 episodes; the storyline follows mainly the Fate scenario but shows parts of other scenarios as well. It was animated by Studio Deen and produced by the Fate Project, which included Geneon Entertainment, TBS, CREi, Type-Moon, and Frontier Works Inc. The series later received its international television premieres on the anime television network Animax in 2007, its English-language television premiere occurring on Animax's English networks in Southeast Asia in June as well as its other networks in South Korea, Hong Kong and other regions. Geneon also licensed the series for distribution across North America. On July 3, 2008, Geneon Entertainment and Funimation Entertainment announced an agreement to distribute select titles in North America. While Geneon Entertainment still retains the license, Funimation Entertainment assumes exclusive rights to the manufacturing, marketing, sales and distribution of select titles. Fate/stay night was one of several titles involved in the deal.
The anime is an adaptation of the Fate/stay night visual novel, featuring content from all of the available scenarios in the original game's release. The general direction of the anime borrows heavily from the Fate scenario, with select segments from Unlimited Blade Works included as filler while only a couple nods are given toward the Heaven's Feel option. Elements from Fate/hollow ataraxia not directly impacting the plot were included, but sparingly. Kenji Kawai composed the original music for the series and also remixed four symphonic themes from the Fate/stay night visual novel for use in the anime: "Hizashi No Naka De" (not featured on the original anime soundtrack, but on the out tracks album "LA SOLA"), "Yakusoku Sareta Shouri No Tsurugi", "Emiya", and "This Illusion", the latter of which was retitled "disillusion".
An animated film based on the storyline of the Unlimited Blade Works route from the visual novel is in production by Studio Deen, and is slated for release throughout Japanese theaters on January 23, 2010. The staff from the anime television series, including director Yuji Yamaguchi, return to work on the film, and most of the voice cast reprise their roles.
There is a soundtrack to the game, called Fate/Stay Night Original Sound Track. There is also an arranged soundtrack of the game music, entitled Avalon - Fate/Stay Night. It is arranged by WAVE and K. JUNO and features two English arranged versions of "This Illusion" titled "Illusion/Vision" and "Illusion/Fate". The anime original soundtrack was arranged and composed by Kenji Kawai. In addition, there are image albums Wish and WHITE AVALON as well as various remix albums Fate another score, Fate/extended play, and Emiya #0. There are also numerous fanmade arrangements: Exodus: Fake/ever since, Iriya 51, Broken Phantasm, fragments, and 17 Division.
Aside from Fate/stay night, the other games in the series have their own soundtracks. There is a Fate/tiger coliseum OST and an imaged sound track for Fate/zero entitled Return to Zero.
|Title||Composition and Arrangement||Lyrics||Performance||Type|
|"THIS ILLUSION"||NUMBER201||Keita Haga||M.H.||Opening theme|
|"days"||NUMBER201||Keita Haga||CHINO||Ending theme|
|"Ougon no Kagayaki"||NUMBER201||Keita Haga||MAKI||Opening theme (Réalta Nua)|
|Title||Composition||Arrangement||Lyrics||Performance||Single Release Date||Type|
|NUMBER201||Kenji Kawai||Keita Haga||Sachi Tainaka||February 22, 2006||Opening theme|
|"Kirameku Namida wa Hoshi
lit. Glittering Tears Change To Stars)(episodes 15-23)
|KATE||Sogawa Tomoji, NUMBER201||Keita Haga||Sachi Tainaka||May 31, 2006||Opening theme|
ga Ita Mori" (あなたがいた森,
lit. The Forest In Which You Were)(episodes 1-13,15-23)
|Jyukai||March 15, 2006||Ending theme|
|"Hikari" (ヒカリ, lit. Light)
|"Kimi to no Ashita" (君との明日, lit. Tomorrow with
|Sachi Tainaka||Kaneko Takahiro||Sachi Tainaka||Sachi Tainaka||February 7, 2007||Ending theme|
When released on January 30, 2004, Fate/stay night rapidly became one of the most popular visual novels in history, securing the title of "highest selling visual novel" in 2004. A "fan disk" sequel, Fate/hollow ataraxia, was released on October 28, 2005, which became one of the top selling visual novels of 2005. The popularity of the visual novel lead to the formation of the "Fate Project", which in cooperation with Geneon Japan and Studio Deen produced a twenty-four episode anime series based on the original story in 2006. During that same year, a PS2 port for Fate/stay night entitled Fate/stay night[Réalta Nua] was scheduled for a Fall/Winter release, but was pushed back to 2007. A prequel known as Fate/Zero was produced through a collaboration with fellow visual novel company Nitroplus, which could be obtained prior to the official release date at Comiket 2006. In early 2007, the popularity of Fate/stay night and the anime seiyū lead to the launch of the Fate/stay tune internet radio drama, featuring the voice talent of Kana Ueda and Ayako Kawasumi. Another project elaborating on Fate/stay night canon has been planned, but as is the case with Fate/Zero, Type-Moon itself will have little, if any, direct involvement.