YMMV / Fate/Apocrypha

  • Alternate Character Interpretation:
    • While certainly possessing affection for her Master, it's unknown how exactly Fran viewed her relationship with Caules. It's either she viewed him as the love interest she was denied in life, or the father figure Victor Frankenstein never was to her.
    • Artoria during Mordred's flashback. Did the former really not hate Mordred for who she was or did Artoria simply lie about how she felt as part of her Perfect King persona? Apocrypha fans who have never seen Fate/stay night or Fate/Zero before would likely be unable to tell.
    • There has been debate about Jeanne's growing feelings for Sieg. While the final episode makes it clear any romantic feelings come from Jeanne herself, there's debate on how much Laeticia had to do with bringing them out in the open.
  • Americans Hate Tingle: Sieg was received okay in Japan, where he won a spot in a Top 10 Anime Characters poll in a Japanese magazine, and in general is looked at in a more positive light. However, Chinese fans absolutely loathe him, considering him a Canon Sue with disproportionate screentime and considered a 'cardboard'. American viewers also aren't really as fond of him as Japan is, the most lenient opinion about him is that he's overall boring, otherwise they share similar loathing with the Chinese.
  • Ass Pull:
    • Sieg gaining access to Fran's two Noble Phantasm's, Blasted Tree and Bridal Crest during the final battle against Shirou. The story tries to justify this by saying that when Fran sacrificed herself to try and kill Mordred using Blasted Tree, she willed a piece of herself to become a part of him after Mordred killed him meaning that he gained the power to use her abilities when he was revived, and this is a result of her "will" actually being contained in the lightning that originally gave her life and runs through her body. While this is already pretty bad since her lightning reviving Sieg to begin with is questionable writing, the bigger issue is with how this fact isn't revealed until the fighting starts between Sieg and Shirou, meaning the ability literally comes out of nowhere to justify Sieg beating Shirou. Adding to the issue is that Sieg already got a power-up when he was given Siegfried's heart and could thus use his powers temporarily and with great cost to himself. It would of made more sense for Sieg to turn into Siegfried to win, but given he used all his Command Seals to beat Karna, Fran's abilities end up feeling like a last minute twist.
  • Awesome Ego: Shakespeare. Some of his actions throughout the story have left this impression on some fans.
  • Awesome Music: The second ED, "Koe" by ASCA.
  • Base-Breaking Character:
    • Sieg is this for Western and Chinese fans. Some like him and consider him an interesting take on Nasuverse protagonists with a good arc that fleshes him out into a hero, but others think of him as a bland, badly-written Canon Sue character whose presence in the story is barely felt and takes time away from other, more interesting characters (most prominently, Siegfried himself), and keeps getting undeserved power ups from characters that don't even know him (most blatantly, Fran's sacrifice that somehow empowered him). Comparisons to the worst traits of Shirou Emiya are common. His pairing with Jeanne is also controversial—either it's enjoyable and similar to Shirou and Artoria's relationship, or it's forced and cringey. It's to the point that his voice actor Natsuki Hanae has promised to try and make Sieg as likeable as possible. On the other hand the Japanese like him well enough, to the point that he managed to score 6th place in a popularity poll held by the Newtype magazine.note 
    • Jeanne got hit with this as well. To some, she's a great character with moments to show for it such as her exorcism of Jack the Ripper. To others, they find her underdeveloped and somewhat bland when compared to Mordred. However, it's when she starts developing feelings for Sieg that some fans started to really have a problem with her character. The most common criticism being that her feelings for him feels contrived/forced due to a lack of chemistry and proper build up, with some also feeling that Jeanne shouldn't even be in a relationship considering her history. This is only made worse with how controversial Sieg is in the first place. It's telling that it's her appearances in Fate/Grand Order and Fate/Extella, both of which lack the presence of Sieg, that fans have little to no problems about her.
    • Astolfo. One side of fans (especially the people on certain Image Boards) has had a soft spot for Astolfo since day one, most likely because of him looking exactly like a cute, pink-haired little girl, and his earnest personality and relationship with Sieg won him other fans. Over time Hype Backlash ensued and there are a lot of other fans who consider him shallow Pandering to the Base otaku bait with an irritating and bratty personality.
    • Frankenstein, who went from The Scrappy to this. She first gained and still has a lot of hate for being a cute female, when Frankenstein's monster's hideous appearance was central to its story. Outside of her design, she's also disliked for how little she factors into the story, as she gets only a few skirmishes and two notable fight scenes with Shirou Kotomine and Mordred to showcase her ability, and then is one of the first Servants to die with very little elaboration on her personality (which is what saved Chiron and Achilles) and serves no greater purpose in the narrative aside from saving Sieg's life and giving him some extra power. The anime attempted to rectify this by giving her relationship with Caules more focus, and the reveal that she suffered just as much as the original Frankenstein's Monster and her Dying Moment of Awesome against Mordred managed to win her several fans.
    • Atalanta temporarily became this during the anime's run starting from the end of Jack the Ripper's arc. Since the anime cut out a lot of her POV of the event, which solidified why she took the stance against Jeanne, it made a part of the audience consider her an annoying, wasted character who wouldn't shut up about protecting children and dismissing their crimes just because they're children, with another camp claiming that they still could make sense about Atalanta's stance and blamed the anime for cutting her POV contents, mostly because they already read the light novel. However, after she turned berserk and then had a tearful death scene with Achilles, both bases reunite, re-appreciated her and she's once again averting the trope.
  • Better on DVD: Due to the serialized nature of the story and just how much the entire anime feels more like an extended movie, watching multiple episodes at once might feel more immersive than taking in each episode individually as standalones.
  • Complete Monster: Celenike Icecolle Yggdmillenia, amongst the morally ambiguous Yggdmillenia family, is the only one who absolutely has no moral compass. Celenike practices blood magic, sacrificing innocents, including children, which she takes great pleasure in. A sadistic dominatrix, Celenike keeps a dungeon in her spare time where she tortures those who cross her, or just those who catch her fancy for the fun of it. In between missions, Celenike will very regularly torture, rape and murder attractive young men, especially homunculi she deems "useless". Celenike also become fixated on her Servant Astolfo. After becoming jealous that he is forming a bond with Sieg, a homunculus who has formed an identity, Celenike snaps and uses her Command Seals to force Astolfo to gruesomely murder Sieg just to break Astolfo. Unlike her other family members and many other antagonists from the franchise, Celenike is motivated by nothing more than cruel lust and unrestrained sadism.
  • Critical Dissonance: Episode 22. The battle scenes (especially for Karna vs. Sieg) had praise heaped on them by many industry heavyweights (including the character designer of Mob Psycho 100, Masaaki Yuasa, and Kinoko Nasu himself) as an amazing work of art by a team of newbie animators that would go down in anime history as a legendary accomplishment. Viewers have been significantly more vicious and divided towards it, with some saying the constant Art Shift make it look ridiculous, while others state that the fluidity of the animation either makes up for it or actually makes the Art Shift work. There's also the fact that readers of the light novel either still think it's complete nonsense that Sieg was able to defeat Karna and cite the explanation given as a total Ass Pull, or don't mind because Astolfo jumped in to provide the save with Achilles's shield and thus prevented Sieg from coming off as a completely overpowered Canon Sue. It's rather like the similar outrage that erupted in Fate/stay night [Unlimited Blade Works] when Shirou defeated Gilgamesh.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse:
    • Mordred and Kairi. If there's one thing that can be agreed among many fans about what's good in Apocrypha is that it introduced the two into the franchise. Both are considered great characters with well defined motivations and backstories, many even agree that both should have been the main protagonists instead.
    • Karna has been popular from very early in development due to his interesting legend, awesome design, and incredible abilities. His Canon Immigrant appearance in Fate/Extra CCC (and Extella) made his popularity absolutely skyrocket even before his on-screen debut in Apocrypha anime.
    • Atalanta. Like Karna, she was popular from very early on, and her role in the novel proper just elevated this.
    • Achilles. While at first he was hated for replacing Saint George, his rebellious personality and Blood Knight tendencies started to grow on the fans, moreover his Big Damn Heroes moment, defeating both Chiron and later Atalanta, at the cost of his life but freeing her from Jack's Ghosts' control, and giving Astolfo the means to survive Vasavi Shakti, thus being the only reason as to why the heroes managed to win in the end, won him more than a few fans
    • Semiramis. Besides the obvious, Semiramis gained a lot of popularity because Assassins were considered something of Memetic Loser (with the exception of Fate EXTRA). She was also a very unconventional Servant and quite the Magnificent Bastard within the story, many fans also liked her romance with Shirou, giving her further depth.
    • Toole, the female homunculus that Sieg saves on the battlefield, started to gain traction in the community particularly once she goes out her way to help Sieg rescue the other Yggdmillenia homunuculi. Her slight resemblance to Maiya Hisau might have something to do with it, as well as surviving a battle with Achilles.
  • Evil Is Sexy: Among the ladies, Celenike, Reika, and Semiramis fit this. All three women are quite attractive and at the same time are the most morally ambiguous among the cast with former two being straight-up Ax-Crazy.
  • Fan-Preferred Couple:
    • Sieg/Astolfo is way more liked than the canonical Sieg/Jeanne, especially in anime, where Sieg and she for a long time interact Like Brother and Sister before Jeanne's feelings for him blossom while Astolfo's interactions with Sieg from nearly their first interaction practically reek of romance due to Astolfo's bubbly nature. And then there are the people who cut out the middleman and just make it a threesome.
    • And on Jeanne's side, Mordred's a fair bit more well-liked as a paramour, with their stronger chemistry and overall similarities and contrasts as characters.
    • Fran/Caules is one of the most popular pairings amongst the Servant/Master pairs and even went so far as to help redeem Frankenstein in some viewers' eyes.
    • Achilles/Atalanta more or less exploded in popularity with Episode 22 ending in their tearful battle and deaths.
  • Fetish Retardant: Jack the Ripper's original design can be this to some people as she has the upper body of a child yet has lower body more fitting for a grown woman. Luckily her new and improved artwork from Volume 2 have fixed the worst of this by giving her a normal physique.
  • Franchise Original Sin:
    • As good of a premise the Holy Grail War is (a battle royale among seven Master-Servant pairs), it also bears the risk of having too many major characters for effective storytelling. The visual novel Fate/stay night takes 3 mutually-exclusive routes to fully explore all of its characters through the protagonist's perspective; Fate/Zero manages to keep a balance on all participants with more focus placed on Kiritsugu and Kirei but not before a 45-minute Infodump first episode. The cast of Fate/Apocrypha is overblown with two teams, fourteen Servants and fourteen Masters on both sides plus Ruler plus Sieg. As a consequence, five Masters of Red are just extras, many Servants have as much background story as the Servant you draw from Fate/Grand Order gacha, and the lack of focus on characters is constantly brought up as a criticism on the show.
    • For Fate spin-offs, this is the point when Fanservice in character design becomes egregious. The larger set of Servants makes room for two Saberfacesnote , two (debatably three) Gender Flip charactersnote  and one androgynous man. Female characters are also noticeably bustier and/or more Stripperific than in Fate/Zero and Fate/stay night [Unlimited Blade Works].
    • The majority of the criticisms towards Sieg are an extension of criticisms that other Fate main protagonists are criticized for as well.note  However, this is more prominent with Sieg because of the fact that his character development is simply lacking in comparison to other Fate protagonists such as Shirou Emiya and Hakuno Kishinami. The latter two of whom actually outgrow their initial blandness to varying degrees in each of their respective stories or are given some manner of justification that is expanded after it is revealed, such as Shirou's Survivor's Guilt. To put it one way; while all three are basic examples of bland characters for their medium that do develop over the course of their story, Sieg suffers from having the least amount of Hidden Depths and development and thus comes across as lacking.
  • Fridge Brilliance:
    • Amakusa Shirou being summoned makes some amount of sense, as he was a native to the country where the third Holy Grail War was taking place.
    • Waver Velvet still went on to become Lord El-Melloi II even though the Fourth Grail War didn't happen. The Fridge Brilliance kicks in when you remember the paper he wrote (that was ridiculed by Kayneth, the first Lord El-Melloi) asserted that hard work and dedication could allow a magus to overcome the disadvantage of a limited lineage. From the look of it, he was right. Similarly, because the Fourth Grail War didn't happen, Kayneth presumably died in a way that left his Crest intact for transplantation in the next Lord El-Melloi. And seeing as Waver controls a Volumen Hydragyrum...
  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff: Both Mordred and Kairi Shishigou were already well-received in Japan, but had to compete with other characters (namely Jeanne, Astolfo and even Sieg). In the American fanbase, they were MUCH more well-loved to the point that they believe they deserve the main protagonist spot as opposed to Sieg, who was instead despised there (story-related reasons already listed above). Values Dissonance is in play for great effects here: Mordred being the tomboyish daredevil and Shishigou being a manly man with Cool Shades and both of them being anti-heroic to a degree fit well with the Western tastes as opposed to Sieg's frail shape, rather androgynous look and being a straight-up heroic character which the Japanese couldn't get enough of, but it's not as well-received in the West.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: Seeing Mordred of the past and present showing many of her more likable traits would hit you in the feels when if you watch the very end of Fate/Zero, you realized that Mordred is among those bodies Saber is standing on.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: Yuusuke Kobayashi is forced to interact with an Emotionless Girl, who has a powerful mace and who is inclined to fall into berserker mode. Hmm, have we already seen this somewhere?
  • Ho Yay:
    • Plenty of Sieg's moments with Astolfo, while either ranging from hilarious to incredibly touching, absolutely reek of this. Made more apparent in the light novel when Astolfo gently comforts Sieg while the other is suffering an intense panic attack from all his near-death experiences. There's also a moment where after an insensitive remark by Sieg results in Astolfo harshly slapping him they're very quick to reconcile with Astolfo claiming Sieg is his everything when Sieg says he can easily be replaced by another Master in the event he dies so that Astolfo doesn't have to die after him, and they actually end up sleeping and cuddling in the same bed together. More than once. And there's so much more where that came from...
    • There's a bit between Mordred and Semiramis though mostly on Semiramis's end and of the violent kind. After Semiramis poisons Mordred with her Noble Phantasm during their final battle and leaves her struggling to survive, she offers Mordred a chance to live and even get her wish if she kills her Master Kairi and "becomes [Semiramis's] knight". What pushes it into suggestive territory is that she says this while getting very close to Mordred before cupping her chin with one hand and smiling into her face. Even before that, the two repeatedly trade insults and physical blows more viciously than nearly any other Servants.
  • Internet Backdraft: The announcement that the anime adaptation would only be streamed on Japanese Netflix was not taken lightly by anyone in the anime community, who collectively called out Netflix for effectively killing any hype or good will the anime might have gained during its broadcast season. The fact that Western Netflix won't receive it until almost four months later did not make it any better.
    • Both Japanese & Western audiences have expressed some serious online hate for the episode 22 fights, to the point that 2channers were actively trash-talking Kinoko Nasu as a blind man who wouldn't know what good animation was if it slapped him in the face. See Critical Dissonance above.
  • Iron Woobie: Caules is dragged into the war against his will, spends most of the time worrying for Berserker's well-being and believes he is not good enough to be her Master. And yet he takes it all in stride and still tries to find ways to be useful to his faction.
  • Jerkass Woobie:
    • Jack the Ripper and Reika. Sure, they have some horrific backstories, but they are also really into killing criminals, or people they perceive as such.
    • Also applies to Mordred. While she is violent and abrasive, she was rejected by her "father" and had her dreams of being a perfect knight dashed. Not to mention being the pawn of her mother, Morgan le Fay.
  • Just Here for Godzilla: Long-time Fate fans mostly watch this series for their favorite Servants such as Karna, Mordred, Astolfo, Jeanne, Semiramis, or Achilles, not the plot.
  • Launcher of a Thousand Ships:
    • Sieg, who in addition to his canon love interest Jeanne also gets shipped with Astolfo for their friendship (and the fact Astolfo's bisexual) and with Mordred for their Foe Yay and eventual rivalry.
    • Astolfo, who gets shipped with Sieg, Jeanne, Mordred, Siegfried...
  • LGBT Fanbase: Not surprisingly, given the presence in the work of characters such as Astolfo, who has an androgynous appearance and identifies himself as a bisexual, and Mordred, who can be perceived as a genderqueer because of her manliness and refusal to consider herself a girl yet still having little to no problem wearing Stripperific clothing.
  • Magnificent Bastard: Shirou Kotomine and Semiramis are definitely a bastard duo for their devious schemes, especially when they hypnotized the other Red Masters so they can have control over the Red Servants in their own bidding.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • Being Lancer Is Wonderful Explanation 
    • Who can Karna defeat? Explanation 
    • Fiore wants the horse D Explanation 
    • Fiore is Doc Ock Explanation (spoilers) 
    • Mordred is a Decepticon Explanation 
    • Then why does Berserker go berserk?Explanation 
    • Spartacus used Sparta Kick!Explanation 
    • Spartacus and DOWN WITH OPPRESSION!!! Explanation 
    • Cardboard-kun Explanation 
  • Moe:
    • Fiore, Astolfo, Frankenstein and Roche being the prime examples.
    • Mordred's Fan Nickname is Moedred.
    • Despite how disturbing she is, Jack the Ripper is an example as well, having the appearance & personality of an adorable little girl.
    • Jeanne becomes even cuter, thanks to her growing feelings towards Sieg.
  • Moral Event Horizon:
    • Darnic crosses it when he forces Vlad by Command Seal to transform into Dracula and then forcibly possess him after Vlad kills him in retaliation. What pushes this over I Did What I Had to Do (since Darnic did it with the express purpose of getting the Greater Grail back and there was no other way they could force their way through to get it and Vlad would have preferred death to transforming) is how much pleasure Darnic takes in reveling in the power of Dracula and mocking Vlad for trying to get in the way of his ambition.
    • Celenike crosses it as well. While in the midst of a Villainous Breakdown, she uses her Command Spells to force Astolfo, her Servant, into killing Sieg. Her reason? Astolfo was getting too attached to the homunculus he saved, and she intended to make him drown in despair him by making him break his code of honor by forcing him to murder an innocent person. She only saw Astolfo as her familiar, meaning in her mind, she owned him and can do what she wants with him, even break him mentally. For that matter, having a master like Celenike is any good natured and honorable Servant's worst nightmare.
    • In the very next episode, Avicebron/Caster of Black crossed it by sacrificing his own Master Roche to complete his Golem, despite his screams of anguish of being betrayed by his own Servant/professor, which subverts his reasoning to the Red Faction about defecting to them as long as his Master is unharmed, because he'll be the one who does the 'harming' personally, for his own goal of recreating Paradise since he dislikes mankind, and in his own words, it has nothing to do with the Holy Grail at all so all along, he's on neither side. He seals it with his own words, "You have every right to hate me.", and now you see why the normally affable professor is amongst the more amoral characters in both factions.
    • As of episode 23, Shakespeare using his Noble Phantasm First Folio to Mind Rape Jeanne. First, he uses his illusions to create scenarios, like her mother begging her not to go to war, or making her see the dead soldiers blame her for their deaths, but these have no effect on her. That is until the third scenario, where it is pictured almost exactly like the time she was burned at the stake, except, he makes it so its Sieg who gets burned. This effects Jeanne visibly, but she doesn't break. The final scenario, where her old friend and comrade in arms, Gilles de Rais shows up, with Seig's severed head, and gives her a massive Breaking Speech about how she really loves the poor lad, when she is supposed to a love everyone equally as Saint, while slowly transforming into his murderously insane self in the process. By the look of satisfaction on his face, Shakespeare probably knew the first two scenarios wouldn't work on Jeanne, but it did anyway simply to test her, before moving on to acts three & four to really break her spirit.
  • Most Annoying Sound: The sound effect for explosion in the anime can be really grating on some people's ears.
  • Narm: The anime adaptation has several unintentionally funny moments, whether it was because of the source-material, or the bad animations itself.
    • Celenike's out of nowhere Lecherous Licking on Astolfo, at least in the anime. There is literally no explanation for the two times it happens, and Astolfo's bored expression left many confused as to what even the scene was trying to do. Bonus point for fans who think it is gratuitous Yuri fanservice and later find out it is not.
    • Rider of Red's, Achilles, armor looks oddly too big for him in the anime, making him look absolutely scrawny and causing many to laugh at how silly he looks since it makes him look Off-Model. Thankfully this has been fixed, and his armor is now consistently fitting.
    • Fran's Freak Out! in the anime is suitably Tear Jerker and Nightmare Fuel material... at least until one gets a good look at her animation during the climax of the breakdown when she's beating the copy of Victor Frankenstein to death and it looks like her limbs and mouth suddenly became longer and stretchier, like a Tom and Jerry episode. Given who she is it might have been intentional, but it can still draw an inappropriate giggle out of the scene.
    • Vlad's Legend of Dracula is terrifying in how it transforms him and his Demonic Possession by Darnic is chilling, but get past that and one can't help but notice how he's like a Scooby-Doo villain with hammy dialogue (from Darnic), complete with scrawny arms, red pupils, and awkward bat wings. It doesn't help that the animation really doesn't convey how terrorizing this is supposed to be, such as how Vlad's mouth effectively stops moving save for a small twitching, as if him talking was not possible for some kind of effects reason.
    • For native french speakers, the frequent inability of any character in the dub to correctly pronounce french names, such as "Jeanne d'Arc" or "Orléans," can make certain conversations difficult to take seriously, especially when it is Ruler herself who makes these mistakes.
  • Narm Charm: Mind Screw is the story of the birth of Mordred, which was conceived between a Saber who turned into a man and her half-sister, who later turned a child into a clone of "father", can be quite amusing for some. The fact that the original Mordred was also a child of Surprise Incest does not help much.
  • One True Threesome: Sieg/Astolfo/Jeanne is very frequently used as an alternative to shipping one or the other with Sieg. It helps that they all really care for each other by the end of the series. Siegfried and/or Mordred are also added in as extra members.
  • Rescued from the Scrappy Heap:
    • Chiron's personality has saved him from a lot of his previous hate. Achilles's personality also bailed him out in the eyes of his previous hate-dom.
    • Shirou. He is remembered by most as a bad villain from a base-breaking series, with questionable motivation. But his memorable appearances and most importantly, better writing in Fate/Grand Order rescued him. Now, the readers of the original novel are looking ahead to The Reveal about him.
    • Frankenstein didn't completely escape the hate, but her Dying Moment of Awesome and relationship with Caules won over many of her previous haters.
  • Rooting for the Empire: There's just as much as people who believed that the Red Faction deserve to win, namely for having a bunch of likable ensemble: Shirou Amakusa is a Well-Intentioned Extremist whose end goal could be said to be admirable, Karna being an overpowered yet honorable Servant, Achilles being a sociable bro and also overpowered Servant, Atalanta for her very pure wish (and the tragedy that comes with it) and tough attitude and adorable cat ears and tails, Shakespeare for his ham in just about everything leading to hilarity even when he's the antagonist, and Semiramis for being a classy, sexy dominating queen with oddly adorable elven ears. Even their deserter, Mordred, gets a LOT of love due to her overall badass daredevil attitude and accomplishment that fans may also want her and Shishigou to snatch the Grail. While Spartacus might not get very high levels of love due to being eliminated early and unfortunately being considered 'wasted potential', his craziness and meme factor in his short run was also welcomed. The protagonistic Black Faction, on the other hand, had several Base-Breaking Character that got them to lose more rooting, not to mention in the second half, they became more-or-less the de facto good guy faction.
  • Self-Fanservice: While it's fairly obvious Astolfo is supposed to look androgynous leaning towards cute girl, he still has some masculine features as seen in the manga adaptation and in the anime to some extent. You wouldn't be able to tell from fanart though, since it does away with those to give him a more overtly feminine appearance.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character:
    • There are many who feel this way about Siegfried. Siegfried quickly drew interest due to being one of the Black factions most powerful Servants, as well as having a fantastic design, being one of the first Sabers in the franchise to not be another Saberface. Fans also noted that his backstory and motivations drew more than a few parallels to Shirou and Archer, leading to many being interested in what his role in the story would be. Unfortunately, he willingly gives his heart to save the homunculus who would take the name Sieg in his honor by the end of the first novel before his character is fleshed out. The fact that he sacrifices himself for the sake of giving Sieg a power-up caused quite a bit of grumbling amongst fans.
    • Waver Velvet Lord El- Melloi is arguably this given he has no role in the War despite being a veteran Master from a fake Grail War, as well as possibly still having Iskandarís relic.
    • Downplayed with Mordred and Kairi, as while they are main characters, their dynamic and personalities left quite a few fans wishing they were the true protagonists of the series rather than simply the Tritagonists.
    • Both Achilles and Atalanta at times got this about their characterizations. Achilles is usually accused of getting too much of a Historical Hero Upgrade, since a lot of his historical douchebag moments were not mentioned at all and he came off as a friendly bro-style character similar to Cu Chulainn, it was mostly accepted as awesome, but felt detached from Achilles' legend. In case of Atalanta, some feels like that her motivation about being children protector stemming from her being abandoned as a baby was something minor that got exaggerated, instead of her motivation being based from some of her other famous moments like joining the Argonauts or murdering her would-be suitors that lost against her in a footrace, distracted by the golden apple, and then getting turned into a lion. They instead went to her written backstories.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot:
    • The premise of the story is basically "what if the Grail War was teams", and the start of the story focuses on that aspect of it. Yet despite the set up and premise of a team deathmatch story for the Grail, the story shifts to Sieg and focuses on only him, leaving almost all the other Servants and Masters aside from Kairi and Shirou as throwaway characters. And they really became throwaways come the final part of the story.
    • Given that the setting is an alternate universe that changes from the Third Grail War, you would expect the Founding Families of the Grail Wars, the Einzberns, Tohsaka, and Matou, to have a stake in the War or even have some significant usage. It would have been a good way to bring in old favorites like Kariya Matou and Rin Tohsaka. However, the events of the story make it so that the Founding Families can't get involved due to time constraints (the Association only has two months to prepare for the course of the War, too little time to get the red tape involving the Founding Families completed, which includes transportation costs and giving them time to prepare successors to their Family Crests in the event of potential death), so instead they need to hire on mercenaries they can afford to lose. This results in the Red faction being filled with five unnamed Masters who have no role what so ever, and two brand new Masters while the Black faction is also new characters. The anime adaption addresses this slightly by showing the outcome of the Third Holy Grail war in a flashback, revealing that Zouken is possibly dead, while Shirou Kotomine interacted with an Einzbern homunculus who looks nigh-identical to Irisviel and was most likely her predecessor as both the Einzbern Master/Grail vessel when he was summoned into the Grail War.
    • Somehow, the author managed to land a concept of a war which included Vlad the Impaler susceptible to being overwritten by the Legend of Dracula, Frankenstein's Monster, and Shakespeare, and not once have them chat about the nature of fictional creations. (Funnily enough, it's Fate/Grand Order, especially its Epic of Remnant expansion, that picks up on this concept.)
    • After taking over the Red Faction and gaining all the Servants of the Red Faction minus Mordred and a dead Spartacus, Shirou is confronted by Atalanta and Achilles who both question his motives and goals. While Atalanta accepts fighting for him out of necessity, Achilles shows disgust with Shirou and makes it clear he does not want to work with him. Given that his teacher Chiron is a member of the Black Faction, and that Avicebron defected to the Red Faction, thus leaving the Black Faction extremely underpowered, it would of made sense in character for Achilles to defect, or try to at least, and fight alongside his friend. Instead Achilles stays fighting for Shirou in-story out of a sense of honor and being at least partially impressed by Shirou's convictions and desire to see his wish come true. On a meta level, however, the reason for this seems more likely to prevent Karna from having anyone but Sieg to remotely be capable of fighting him, and to make the Black Faction the "underdog" of the two.
    • Given that Sieg and Caules are in the same position, it would have been interesting to see them interact. Instead, they hardly share a scene or have a conversation. The revelation of Sieg inheriting Berserker's powers only makes this an even bigger missed opportunity.
  • Tough Act to Follow: Taking aside the fact that it's being made by A-1 Pictures, the Apocrypha anime gets hit with this hard when compared to the ufotable anime adaptations of Fate/Zero and Fate/stay night. Heck, it's even compared to the 2006 FSN anime by Studio DEEN which some consider to be still better than the Apocrypha anime. It doesn't help that the story and characters of Apocrypha are considered lacking in comparison to FSN and Zero. It reached the point that several people were bashing Nasu himself for giving praise to the fight scenes in Episode 22, despite the fact that if anyone would be qualified to judge the series, it would be him.
  • Viewer Gender Confusion: Many of the fansub groups portrayed Astolfo as a girl, incorrectly identifying his gender because of his feminine nature and very girlish voice. Though this is probably the intended reaction, it doesn't help some characters; namely Jeanne, are also confused and end up using female pronouns (which also caused translation errors, namely writing the subs for his correct gender!) The English dub attempts to avert this by having Faye Mata give him a more masculine, if still effeminate, voice.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome: The fist-fight between Achilles and Chiron in Episode 21 and Karna's release of Vasavi Shakti in Episode 22 are visual orgasms.
  • The Woobie:
    • Jack the Ripper. Reading her backstory is absolutely heartbreaking, especially if you knew about what life was like in Victorian London beyond what's given there.
    • Astolfo becomes this when his master, Celenike, uses her Command Spells to force him to kill his friend Sieg in an attempt break his spirit and sully his honor. Mordred killing Celenike is the only thing that saves Astolfo from this trauma.
    • After her Dark and Troubled Past, Frankenstein certainly counts as this. Literally the only good thing that happens to her is that she got Caules as a Master, he is the only one that treats her as a human being.
    • Atalanta's original life wasn't a walk in the park already (abandoned as a child in the forest, rejected by her peers because she's a woman, being forced to marry someone and setting up deadly footraces, losing due to being cheated by other Gods, then 'almost' turned into a lion), so she only had one simple wish: A world where children were loved... which turned out to be a Tragic Dream that was realistically unattainable, her mind gets wrecked by Jack the Ripper by playing onto her love for children, she fell into a mad rage and hate, especially towards Jeanne who could only give out blunt truths against her, and the only way out of that is death, which her friend, Achilles, delivered. In the last sane moments of her life, she was crying in regret of not knowing what should be done about the unattainable dream that deep down she knew, but couldn't let go. The hug Achilles gave her was damn needed.


http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/YMMV/FateApocrypha