In a massive online world, people act only as well as their conscience demands. When one player's punishment is to be trapped in this world, a disparate group of people seek the answers why. Their motives are varied; their methods even more so. What stands between when we tear down the walls of reality? Where does our soul end and we begin?
Touru Souma was a hacker in Steppen Wolf, a rogue group of four who caused mischief in the wired world. But during their final hacking session, they attacked the government agency known as FLAK and Touru’s friend Yuuya died in the process. Haunted by his memories, Touru vows to find the ones responsible for murdering Yuuya, even if it means he must join the enemy to do so. Further complicating the matter is the emergence of the terrorist organization Fei Dao; but the largest challenge Touru must now face is his forgotten memories – especially one involving a girl who continuously reappears in reality...
I actually bought Baldr Forces DVD because it looked like dot hack from the cover since it looked all virtual and stuff. Baldr force has A.I.s, a boundary between real and virtual that definately has been crossed. It also has a character trapped between the virtual world and the real world, much like .hack//signs main character, Tsukasa. These two series are very similar, but also have their own appeal that wont make them seem exactly the same. If you like one of these, do yourself a favor and check the other out.
Having failed to earn admission to a university, Hideki Motosuwa has moved to the big city, determined to study his hardest for next year's exams. However, an unusual distraction presents itself one unsuspecting day in the form of Chii, a robotic young girl that has been discarded in the trash. In a world where an increasing number of people turn to these 'persocoms' for company, the bonds and limits of human relationships are tested as flesh manages to fall in love with the machine itself...
Oh how technology controls us, we like to pretend it is our slave when really, it is our master. The artwork is simply stunning, the littlest details done to the tee. The soundtracks fit each scene so well that it drags you into the story. You feel like you have become one with it, that your sitting on the sidelines watching it all unfold. Simply not to be missed. I recomend highly though that both be watched in their native language of Japanese with the subtitltes of your language choice. So many little details were lost in the translation. Details that just make it that much more amazing.
Ellis is a young girl who possesses a strange ability to manipulate particles, and has an unfortunate case of amnesia. After accidentally killing a professor in the middle of an experiment, Ellis fled to Mexico and lived under the care of an old lady for many years, but her past has finally caught up with her; there's a price on her head, and men trying to capture her, dead or alive. She meets the bounty hunter Nadie, who befriends her and helps her escape; and together, they decide to travel south to Winay Marka, “The Land of Eternity”, to find clues about Ellis’ past. What’s the origin of Ellis’ powers, and what does “Project Leviathan” have to do with it?
Note: I am making this recommendation after seeing only 8 episodes of El Cazador.
Both series, while the settings are quite different, share a slow pace and a quiet mood. El Cazador has splendid Mexican(?) landscapes, while .hack//Sign has fantasy-game backgrounds. Even though there are action scenes in both series, the focus is on characters instead of combat.
Ever been mistaken for a member of the opposite sex? For Makoto, this embarassing situation becomes reality when he and two classmates are inadvertently transported to a magical world full of castles, royalty, and giant armored bugs. There, he is mistaken for Fatora, a missing princess, and quickly becomes entangled in a seven day quest to find her, all the while fending off female advances and trying to clear his name!
Like .hack//SIGN, El-Hazard is another great series where the main character(s) gets trapped in an alternate "world", whether it be in a computer or an alternative world. In both, the main character must figure out the mysteries of the world to escape it.
Hitomi was just a normal high school girl, until she was taken by the mysterious Van Fanel and dropped into a world of romance, magic and giant sword-wielding armor suits! Now Van, pilot of the famed armor suit Escaflowne; and Hitomi, whose hobby of predicting the future just became a frightening reality, must work together and fight the advanced technology of Zaibach: a force who want to shape Gaea to their visions of "peace". Follow Hitomi in her struggles against both these forces who seek to conquer this world, and her own confused heart.
Like .hack//SIGN, Escaflowne is another great series where one of the main characters gets trapped in an alternate "world", whether it be in a computer or an alternate dimension. Plus, they both have a semi-medieval theme. If you liked one of these series, I'm sure you would like the other.