Space Battleship Yamato 2205 Report 22

Yamato world held steady for another month with a new Yamaket fan gathering, another round of Hyuga parts, two live concerts, unexpected media blips and the next issue of the Premium Fan Club magazine with some fresh 3199 news. Let’s take it from the top…

April 2: Yamaket 21

Any time we wonder what’s happening with our Japanese brothers and sisters in Yamato fandom, another bi-annual Yamaket creeps up to show us they’re still alive and well and bursting with creativity. For the 21st time, they gathered for this one-day mini-con (an offshoot of a larger fan event called Torilozi) to sell their latest art, crafts, and fanzines.

Plus, manga artist Michio Murakawa usually turns up to live-draw on the spot (see a video clip here).

See a Yamaket 21 photo gallery here.

April 5: Akiba Souken poll

In other fan news, another poll closed on this day at the fan-run Akiba Souken website. To mark the 40th anniversary of Final Yamato, the question this time (answered by 110 voters) was, “What’s your favorite mecha from Final Yamato?”

The rankings were as follows (with several tie votes)…

1. Robot horse
2. Yamato
3. Cosmo Tiger II/Dessler’s ship
5. Cosmo Zero
6. EDF Battleship
7. Hyper radiation missile
8. EDF Destroyer
9. Dengil torpedo boat/City Satellite Uruk
11. Gamilas battleship/Cosmo Hound/Tritium Planet/Pre-Noah/Dengil rock ship
16. Analyzer/Yamato‘s anti-radiation missile beam gun/EDF Cruiser/EDF lifeboat/Dengil torpedo carrier/Dengil mobile fortress

See the original post here.

April 5: 1/350 Diecast Gimmick Model Vol. 211

Hachette’s first volume for April gave modelers a subassembly to work on, the leading edge of Hyuga‘s flight deck.

See Hachette’s instruction video here

See an unboxing video here

See a modeler’s blog here

April 6: The Comics Journal article

As the impact of Leiji Matsumoto’s February passing continues to ripple and rebound, fans and scholars alike get a greater sense of his massive contributions to global culture. This now includes The Comics Journal, a long-lived observer of pop culture with a focus on comics and manga. On April 6, they published a translated essay from a book titled Manga and War by Natsume Fusanosuke.

Read it here.

April 9: Hochi Shimbun article

Once in a while, we hear from the original Yamato superfan himself, Ryosuke Hikawa, and his words are always worth listening to. On this day, the Hochi Shimbun (newspaper) sat down with him on the occasion of his latest book debut, and here’s what they discussed…

Yamato and Gundam are the Newtypes of Japanese Anime

By Kazuki Ota. See the original article here.

Ryosuke Hikawa, 65, is a researcher of anime and tokusatsu (special effects). In his book, The innovation of Japanese anime: a structural analysis of the changes that marked a turning point in history (Kadokawa), he thoroughly discusses the anime innovations he has studied. He says that the greatest innovations occurred during the production of Space Battleship Yamato in 1974 and Mobile Suit Gundam in 1979, and that “both of these works had a great impact on later works.”

Order your copy of Hikawa’s book at here

Space Battleship Yamato started when I was in high school,” Hikawa says. “Before that, I liked anime and tokusatsu and used to watch them a lot.” But what he was most interested in was, “How is anime made?”

“I could understand that cel images are shot one by one, but the concept of how they were made was a bit fuzzy. I thought it was the cartoonist’s assistant working hard to draw the cels.”

Hikawa became interested in the production of anime and visited the actual studio. What he saw there inspired him to do research on anime.

He said, “It is not a case of just drawing on the spur of the moment, but creating a kind of design document for dozens or hundreds of people to draw in a unified way. I learned that there are good reasons to draw great works. But what made me like it? I wanted to know why I was moved.”

It is no exaggeration to say that Japanese anime is now at the top of the world. Japan’s first full-length anime, Hakubenden, was produced by Toei in color in 1958. There is a variety of works in this world. Among them, the most innovative periods centered on Yamato and Gundam.

“In 1974, Yamato was the sole production, but in 1979, Yoshiyuki Tomino created Gundam, Director Rintaro made the Galaxy Express 999 movie, and Hayao Miyazaki made Cagliostro Castle. All of the people I just mentioned were born in 1941. Their works all came together like a frenzy in 1979, and have had a great influence on later works.”

There is a reason for this.

“People born in 1941 would enter the workforce 22 years later, in 1963. That was the year Mighty Atom made its debut and TV anime began. People who started working on Mighty Atom reached their late 30s in 1979. Noboru Ishiguro, who directed Yamato, recognized that people do their best work in their late 30s, and Hideaki Anno, who directed Evangelion, said the same thing. He made Eva at 35.”

There have been some revolutionary events in the history of anime. In the same book, Hikawa fears that the essence of anime has been hollowed out.

“Many people seem to think that they should make anime because anime characters sell, but the opposite is true. Why do characters sell? Why do we keep characters close to us? I haven’t noticed anyone asking this.”

Although the economy is currently revolving around the sale of goods, he says, “I believe the anime industry will taper off. For example, when I watch a movie, all I remember is the characters and the story. I forget the emotions I got from the work. A miraculous moment in the movie is stored away somewhere as a memory. The essence of the character business is to commercialize the characters so that we can remember those moments. However, these days, we often create anime in order to sell characters. I think the means and the end are reversed.”

He expects that anime is based on calculation.

“They are produced based on engineering and technical calculations. It costs a lot of money to make anime, so it has to reach more people than manga or novels, by one or two orders of magnitude. In that sense, when it comes to popularity and the masses, it’s not enough to just rely on sensibility. You have to have technical logic, or you won’t get anywhere. Makoto Shinkai (who made Your Name) is all about calculation, isn’t he?”

Before studying anime and tokusatsu, Hikawa worked as an engineer at Fujitsu, where he was in charge of digital phone development. He says that his work as a researcher made him realize that anime is an “industrial product.”

“Anime is considered to be a world of art, but it is basically an industrial product. As it proceeds through the process, if it’s animated an animation director will check it, and things are decided in detail, such as how the direction is locked down. In the 1990s, standards were established for industrial products, and I thought, ‘That’s exactly what it looks like’.”

The telephone evolved into a digital phone, which evolved into a cell phone. Anime production is evolving from analog to digital in the same way. He believes that AI will be the key to the future of anime.

“Maybe they’ll also incorporate AI to meet the public’s desires, or arouse a bit of material desire. AI is evolving at a very fast pace. I think that the unknown nature of AI will make it useful for anime, or at least help it to evolve.”

Ryosuke Hikawa Profile

Born on February 15, 1958 in Himeji City, Hyogo Prefecture. He is 65 years old. He started writing for an anime magazine while still a student at Tokyo Institute of Technology, and joined Fujitsu after graduation where he worked on digital phone development. He became an independent writer in 2001. He has served as a member of the judging committee for the Agency for Cultural Affairs’ Media Arts Festival and the Mainichi Film Contest.

Read a 2017 interview with Hikawa here.

Read a series of Yamato essays by Hikawa here.

April 12: 1/350 Diecast Gimmick Model Vol. 212

This week, two segments were added to Hyuga‘s hull: a section on the starboard side and the “lid” for the stern, which made it possible to cap and plug another round of fiber optics.

Photo posted on Twitter by MABO

As you can see, there’s still a lot of space to fill up beneath the flight deck, and Mecha Designer Junichiro Tamamori was called upon to decide what to fill it with. He described the process in an interview that can be read here.

See Hachette’s instruction video here

See an unboxing video here

See a modeler’s blog here

April 14: Official Tweet

At last, we got our first fully-sanctioned look at design development from the forthcoming Yamato Be Forever, REBEL 3199. The Yamato Production Committee released these work-in-progress images of Earth’s automated battleships, the Dark Nebula tripod tank, and what can only be Asteroid Icarus.

The caption read as follows:

“These are some of the latest production materials that were included in the 3199 special video released at the last screening event. More production materials from the special video will be released soon!”

See the original Tweet here and get a better look at these in our first REBEL 3199 report here.

April 18: Astrokings collaboration announced

On this day, we got the news of another game collaboration, this timing pairing Yamato 2205 with a mobile SF space battle game called Astrokings. Friend-of-the-website Warren Swanson investigated and brings us the data…

On April 18th, AN Games, developers of Astrokings announced a collaboration with Yamato 2205 and hosted a preliminary event where you could submit suggestions for how Yamato itself plays in the game.

“To our respected commanders, we are pleased to announce that the collaboration you have eagerly anticipated has arrived in the Astrokings universe! Embark on a journey to the Astrokings galaxy with the heroes of Space Battleship Yamato 2205, The New Voyage, riding the legendary flagship Yamato of the 65th Escort Squadron. Lead your victory in the fierce battle against the mighty Dezarium! The flagship and heroes of this brand-new collaboration are ready for deployment. We have made every effort to provide a variety of content to meet your expectations and interest.”

The preliminary event closed on April 29th and the full collaboration began on May 3rd. It features a special story campaign, Yamato as a buildable flagship, and some characters as obtainable heroes and profile portraits.

Astrokings is a Sci-Fi strategy game that allows you to develop planets and form interplanetary relations with both player and nonplayer characters, and explore the universe by using warp gates. In the context of the game, the whole of Defense Fleet 65 appears after a temporal shift, but they’re not alone since Dezarium followed close behind. You must team up with Kodai and the crew to fight off the Dezarium forces and send them back to their dimension.

(The game also implies that this actually happened during the events of 2205. When you finish the story event, Kodai and the gang all have their memories wiped upon leaving the Astrokings dimension!)

To begin the event you must be at least level 10 (as per the tutorial) and you can simply begin by initiating your warp gate!

The game is available on both the Apple store and Google Play WORLDWIDE, meaning that you can also enjoy this content outside Japan! The event is limited and will conclude on May 30th, so log on while you can!!!

Visit the Astrokings Twitter page here

Visit the Astrokings website here

Get the game from the Apple Store or Google Play

Click here for a gallery of promotional art and game stills

April 19: 1/350 Diecast Gimmick Model Vol. 213

Hyuga‘s 43rd volume moved up to the midship area, adding a large section of fairing to the starboard side and reinforcing the hull with two new crossbars.

See Hachette’s instruction video here

See an unboxing video here

See a modeler’s blog here

April 20: Shizuoka Shimbun article

You just never know when Yamato content is going to jump out of your newspaper and hit you square in the face. Watch out, here’s one now!

Shiro Sanada of Space Battleship Yamato: Reflecting the social situation of “Science is the Enemy”

Anime critic Ryota Fujitsu introduces some of the important supporting characters from older anime works.

Supporting characters also have their own lives. In the anime industry, the times when a spotlight falls on such characters is called “The time of duty.” In Episode 18 of Space Battleship Yamato (“Floating Fortress Island: Two Men Brave Death”), Yamato‘s chief engineer, Shiro Sanada, is on duty.

Yamato began airing in October 1974. To save Earth from destruction by an alien attack, Yamato and its crew take on an unprecedented adventure, a voyage of 148,000 light-years. The enemy aliens, Gamilas, attack Yamato in various ways.

In Episode 18, a computer-controlled unmanned space fortress appears. Sanada and the main character, Susumu Kodai, attempt to destroy this fortress from within. In the course of this mission, Sanada’s past is revealed. When Sanada was in elementary school, he lost his older sister in a rocket car accident at an amusement park. He himself had to take on prosthetic limbs.

Sanada says, “I don’t want machines to kill people.” His path in science was based on the belief that science is for the happiness of human beings, and that human beings are above science. “For me,” he says, “science is an enemy to be subdued.”

In the 1960s, many parts of Japan were suffering from pollution. In the 1970s, “reflection” was provided in Progress and Harmony of Mankind at the Osaka World’s Fair. The “apocalypse boom” represented by the bestseller The Great Prophecy of Nostradamus also appeared in the 1970s.

If we just innocently celebrate scientific civilization, might we end up destroying ourselves? This is the reason why Sanada, who is portrayed as a brilliant scientist and engineer, calls science the enemy.
Ryota Fujitsu Profile

Born in Fujieda City. He has been writing articles on anime for magazines and the web since 2000. His main publications include Anime and War (Nippon Hyoron Co.) and Declarations of an Anime Critic (Chikuma Bunko), among others.

April 21: Official Tweet

The Production Committee wasn’t kidding when they said more 3199 materials would be released soon. Just a week later, we were treated to our first look at three of Nobuteru Yuuki’s character designs. From left to right, we have Takeshi Ageha (first seen in Yamato III), most likely Kitano’s older brother (never seen before) and Lieutenant Alphon himself.

See the original Tweet here.

April 25: Isao Sasaki on TV

Isao Sasaki is now 80 years old, which means he’s been singing the Yamato theme for more than half his lifetime (coming up on 49 years as of now). He did it again with as much strength and conviction as ever on the NHK song program Uta-Con, where he also shared some of his memories of Leiji Matsumoto. (Vocalist Chris Hart was also on hand to sing a song from Galaxy Express 999.)

Watch the performance here.

April 26: 1/350 Diecast Gimmick Model Vol. 214

The last Hyuga volume for April seemed like a bundle of unsexy internal parts until it was realized that installing them finally allowed modelers to attach the forward gundeck to the hull. A very sexy moment indeed. Just 36 volumes to go!

See an unboxing video here

April 26: Leiji Matsumoto farewell party announced

When Leiji Matsumoto’s passing was officially announced in February, it was stated that a public event would be held at some point in the future. As of this writing, that point is known: Saturday June 3 at the Tokyo International Forum.

The official Leijisha website made the announcement (see it here) and gave instructions to attendees. If your travel plans include Tokyo on June 3, don’t miss this chance to pay your respects!

April 28: NOTE article

Cover your face! More unexpected Yamato content incoming!

Music Review: Space Battleship Yamato Grand Symphony by Kentaro Haneda

By Kenjiro, posted on the NOTE website. See the original article here.

Today, I would like to introduce something a little different. The late Kentaro Haneda compiled the famous Space Battleship Yamato into a symphony, and it has been almost 40 years since the first performance. I remember how excited I was when I found and listened to this album, and I still listen to it often. I don’t think there are many people who have heard of it, so I would like you to listen to it first here.

First Laserdisc release (1985), second LD release (1993), DVD release (2005)

In 1984, the music of this anime was rearranged into new compositions by Kentaro Haneda. It was performed by the NHK Symphony Orchestra, which can be said to represent Japan, which was quite a miracle.

This is a musical review of the piece, and I hope you will enjoy listening to the Yamato sound performed by the splendid members of this orchestra. I don’t want to say too much, and I don’t think there’s any need to do so. I’m sure there are others with a lot say, but let’s not be frivolous with this gorgeous piece, which seems to be a collaboration between Hiroshi Miyagawa and Kentaro Haneda.

However, since I am going give some comments and introductions, I have to write my opinion, knowing that it is not definitive. I describe this as “a masterpiece that returns adults to their childhood.” I have great respect for the anime of a generation ago. One of the ways I respect them is that they knew how to write a proper theme song.

2009 Resurrection edition, 2014 Sound Almanac reissue

I’m sure there are some modern anime that have good theme songs, if you look for them. The Yamato theme was shown on TV for a minute and a half at most. In this short time, the mission of Yamato is described, and hats off to this splendid rendition in which a strong hymn to Yamato is sung. I borrowed a CD and recorded it on tape and listened to it over and over on my Walkman (we did not have iPods yet).

During that time, I listened to many classics and became familiar with a wide range of music. Then I came across the Yamato Grand Symphony, which allows you to enjoy the beautiful and heroic music of Yamato in another way. Moreover, the fourth movement is an unusual form of double concerto in which Kentaro Haneda plays the piano and adds violin. While returning to your childhood, you can also enjoy the music as an adult. It is truly music for those of us who grew up with Yamato.

Rerecorded 2018 edition

Nowadays, we often see anime songs being made into orchestral arrangements, which is fun. I especially like the music of the Final Fantasy game. I went to hear many orchestras and talked with Nobuo Uematsu. But long before that, adults took anime seriously. I am very happy that they left us such a wonderful symphony.

Incidentally, the same piece was performed again in 2018, also with Naoto Otomo conducting. If you can find the CDs, please buy them and keep them on hand.

Read much more about the Grand Symphony here.

April 30: Star Blazers/Yamato Premium Fan Club magazine Vol. 16

There’s no better way to end a month of Yamato activity than sitting down with the newest issue of the fan club magazine, and this one had a lot to deliver.

The highlights included an overview of the REBEL 3199 video shown at the March screening, more design drawings, an interview with writers Harutoshi Fukui and Takeshi Oka, an introduction to the Voyage to the Future online game, and a memoir of Leiji Matsumoto.

Of course, you can look forward to translations of this content over the coming months as Cosmo DNA’s eternal mission continues.

Also spotted in April

Twin concerts

If you had an itch to hear the Yamato theme performed live, April gave you two opportunities to scratch it. On the 8th, you could attend Movie Music XIV at Muza Symphony Hall in Kawasaki. The playlist put Space Battleship Yamato in such worthy company as 2001, Close Encounters, and Star Wars.

On the 23rd, Akira Miyagawa raised the baton to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Koriyama Brass Band at the Kenshin Cultural Center in the city of Koriyama. This was a bigger deal with suites from the original Yamato, 219, and 2202. If we’re lucky, there will be a CD in our future.

Fan models

Fan art slowed down in April for whatever reason, but will return for sure in our next report. But Japan’s modelbuilders did their part to fill the gap. See their latest amazing creations here.

A sign of the future

Consider something for a moment: if this was the world of Space Battleship Yamato, the ancestors of the crew would be among us right now. This photo, posted on Twitter by Androw Umeda, suggests that very thing. And they even got the colors right.

Androw’s caption: “What a lovely name. And gorgeous coloring. There seems to be a department where this kind of thing happens.”

The actual translation of the name is Sanada Manufacturing Co. and their website can be found here. As you’ll see, it’s entirely appropriate to its namesake.

Fan Artist Profile

Time to meet another of the talented and dedicated Yamato fans who delivers some of the amazing artwork we see here in the character galleries month after month. (Hot tip: enter the words “character fan art” or “mecha fan art” in the search bar to bring all the galleries to the top.)


1. What was your first Yamato experience?

When I was in elementary school, it was a rerun on TV.

2. What is your favorite aspect of Yamato?

The part where it stands on the edge of despair as just one ship to face it.

3. Are you a Yamato collector?

I can’t call myself a collector, but I am slowly collecting things that can be used as reference materials for drawing.

4. What is your most treasured Yamato item?

Space Battleship Yamato Chronicles (Take Shobo, 2001), a book which contains the mecha and settings from 1974 to 2001.

5. What are your favorite drawing tools?

I mainly use CLIP STUDIO PAINT PRO for digital work.

6. Where can your work be seen?

You can see it on Twitter and Pixiv!

7. Does your family share your hobby?

They know about my hobbies, but we don’t share them.

8. Please tell us something about your life outside your art.

I am currently a student attending a technical school. Before that I was a crew member on a ship for 3 years.

9. Are you involved in Yamato activities with other fans?

I go to modeling events and movies.

10. What do you hope to see in a future Yamato anime?

I will be happy if the remake series continues to its conclusion. I would also like to see spin-offs and prequels.

11. What is your favorite anime after Yamato?

Legend of the Galactic Heroes and Cowboy Bebop!

12. What would you like to say to Yamato fans around the world?

The voyage of Yamato will continue. I hope you will always love both the old and the new.

13. What should everyone know about Japan and its people?

Japan is also a shipbuilding country. If you are coming to Japan as a tourist, you might want to visit a prominent shipbuilding town.

Yamatunes for April

Yamato theme, piano solo
Click here
Yamato theme on Electone organ (with sound effects)
Click here

Yamato theme performed on soprano sax
Click here
Yamato theme, music box version
Click here

What’s next

A brand new radio suite launched the month of May in style, followed by all the usual stuff that makes life worth living for Yamato fans. Especially the surprises. Head on back here June 15 for the next report to see what went down! Until then, follow our Facebook page for daily posts and breaking news!

Next, power up your time machine and immerse yourself in Vintage Report 12, covering the explosive premiere of Farewell to Yamato in 1978. A boom so loud you can still hear it today!

Cosmo DNA writer/editor Tim Eldred here, inviting you to a party that’s just one click away. If you’ve enjoyed this website and my various Star Blazers comics, it’s my duty to tell you that they represent only a fraction of a career that spans more than 40 years. ARTVALT is where I open my archives and roll out all sorts of weird and cool things ranging from unknown to world famous! New updates happen on the first of every month! Click here to join the fun!

One thought on “Space Battleship Yamato 2205 Report 22

  1. Always a pleasure to read these while eating breakfast. Especially the fan artist profiles! They are an amazing addition to these reports!

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