YMMV: Kantai Collection

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    Tropes Present in the Browser Game 

  • Adaptation Displacement: Initially, although not anymore. The franchise (especially Shimakaze) spawned so many doujinshi and other derivative works that people were surprised to find out that it's a browser game.
  • Americans Hate Tingle: As with any Japanese media franchise focusing on World War II, many Koreans do not like Kantai Collection. In particular, there was editorial written in the South Korean newspaper, Hankook Ilbo, criticizing Kantai Collection for thCe conservative political shift among young people in Japan following the long-term economic recession and political instability and glorify Imperial Japan's militarism. Japan Times wrote a counter response to such criticism stating that Space Battleship Yamato had faced similar criticism when it first aired, but had little impact in Japan's domestic politics. note 
    • It is also not well-liked in certain parts of United States (particularly Hawaii and among many WWII veterans or family members of WWII veterains), since nearly all the protagonists are personified Japanese warships from World War II; while the antagonists are demonic in nature, and though not outright said to be American military, are strongly implied to be.
  • Audience-Alienating Premise: The fact that the protagonists are on the side of Imperial Japan has made some of the more historically-minded western gamers uncomfortable, given the war crimes the Japanese committed in WWII.
  • Base Breaker: The January 29, 2014, update turned into this for non-Japanese players, as it made the game progressively harder to play continuously by introducing a periodic reset for the game's API link. Half of the foreign players declared it the end of the world and abandoned ship, while the other half just took it as something to get used to and a minor inconvenience at best (as grabbing a new API link every 90 minutes takes less than five minutes). However, with the periodic need to get a new API forcing countless players to log in simultaneously, the DMM log-in servers got overloaded, making the game inaccessible to almost everyone for hours at a time. The API reset was subsequently quietly removed in the emergency update that followed, much to the relief of many, and shows no sign of being reinstated.
  • Breather Level:
    • The Arpeggio event in 2013-14, being a newbie-friendly event, was this compared to the events sandwiching it (the infamously nightmarish Fall 2013 event and the Anniversary Spring 2014 event). It was the first event which consisted of only three maps, no boss health regeneration (all other events had this feature after the first two maps) and it contained only the second map in the history of the game with a 100% chance to reach the boss regardless of fleet (the May 2013 E-4 map being the first, but it was also a lot harder to clear).
    • The Fall 2014 event, which consists of again three main maps plus an "extra operations" map. Much like the Arpeggio event, this came in the wake of the Fake Difficulty-filled Summer 2014 event, and is much easier by comparison, again allowing for chip damage and no Boss HP regeneration.
  • Broken Base: There's a minority of Western fans, especially in the United States, that find the ability to marry Destroyers and other ship-girls that look to be little more than children to be extremely discomforting. This unfortunately extends to people who have never played the game or know anything about it calling everyone that does like the game a Lolicon.
  • Complacent Gaming Syndrome:
    • The varied fleet composition requirements native to some maps were actually put into place to avert this. Because really, it would be just so easy to make a default fleet made up of a pair of Battleships, Carriers, and Torpedo Cruisers, and steamroll nodes otherwise.
    • The PVP section is mainly this, though. A fleet of one torpedo cruiser (a high-level submarine works too, though not as effective as a torpedo cruiser), four battleships with good AA coverage, and any lead ship (the one you want to grind for Experience Points) wins against almost all other formations (even carrier-heavy ones). An exception occurs when the opponent fields an all-submarine PVP fleet, but in that case you should break out your destroyers, light aircraft carriers, and light cruisers which wins handily against them.
  • Crack Is Cheaper:
    • While Bribing Your Way to Victory is possible, it takes a lot of money to give yourself a significant advantage over the other players. Following the introduction of Large Ship Construction, trying to buy resources in real money to do LSC will turn this trope Up to Eleven. The game even warns players not to buy resources just to attempt LSC because of that. And under the marriage system, buying enough rings (700 yen each) to marry all the girls (151 as of 10 April 2015) would cost over 105,000 yen (not counting the free ring of course).
    • Averted for the game in general however, as it has been voted by Japanese browser gamers as the most fun-to-play and the cheapest browser game, which is one of the reasons for its popularity.
  • Crossover Ship:
    • There is a lesser known fan crossover between Kancolle and Axis Powers Hetalia, see Friendly Fandoms below.
    • From the Touken Ranbu/Kancolle front, there are several:
      • Mikazuki Munechika/Mikazuki in a grandfatherly relationship. This is to be expected since the shipgirl is ostensibly named after the sword (aside from the fact that it is also a month name, thus still confirming to the class' theme naming). In fact, shipping artworks featuring shipgirls and swordguys sharing a common kanji in their names is quite popular (i.e. Yamato-no-kami Yasusada/Yamato, Tsurumaru Kuninaga/Shoukaku).
      • Shokudaikiri Mitsutada/Tenryuu is also quite popular, because of their resemblance to each other and the fact that both has a predilection for caring others.
  • Demonic Spiders: Ru-class fits this bill: surprisingly powerful, pops up a lot, can hit very hard and usually included in many of the later formations. To say nothing of the Re-class (which is thankfully still only found in 5-5 so far), who can literally participate in every combat phase, and can dish out a lot of damage with every attack.
  • Evil Is Sexy: The more human-looking Abyssal ships have gotten this reaction from fans, to the point where some have wished for the option to play as the Abyssal Fleet, or at least have them come over to your side.
  • Face of the Band: Shimakaze is usually the first kanmusu that comes to mind for non-players whenever Kantai Collection is discussed, due to her memorable outfit.
  • Fandom Rivalry:
    • With Touhou, partially due to how various Pixiv artists appeared to have stopped doing Touhou fanart in favour of this game, and partially due to how the Touhou Popularity Poll made a simple question asking whether the person heard of the game. NOT helped by the fact that, during the most recent Reiteisai (an annual Touhou fan gathering), several Kancolle cosplayers "invaded" the proceedings. While this resulted in more than a little ruffled feathers, ZUN himself didn't seem to mind, and went on record to say that the two series actually work well together. Then again, Touhou and Kan Colle have quite a bit of overlap and while many artist jumped off Touhou and onto the Kan Colle bandwagon, many tend to draw both - also, many doujin circles still arrange both Kan Colle and Touhou, sometimes even on the same album. One could say that Touhou's and Kan Colle's Fandom are more FriendlyRivals than bitter enemies.
    • Some World Of Warships players, particularly those who do not play KanColle, get irritated with the influx of KanColle fans who play the game, especially those who spam memes in the text chat, most notably Yuudachi's "poi" Verbal Tic. Irritated players refer to those who do such as "Shipfuckers".
  • Foe Yay: Whenever a kanmusu is shipped with someone/something from the Abyssal Fleet. The fact that the one of the Abyssal girls, Wo-Class, has tentacles does not help.
  • Fountain of Memes: Just about anything that Kongou shouts in Gratuitous English sticks with the fandom.
  • Friendly Fandoms:
    • With Axis Powers Hetalia. It probably helps that Japan's default outfit is the uniform worn by IJN officers, the fact that both series are themed around World War II, and the focus of both of the series isn't about the Japanese politics in World War II.
    • Also with Touken Ranbu, mostly because said game is Kan Colle's Spear Counterpart and also hosted on the same website.
    • Kantai Collection players also often play World Of Warships at the same time, and it's not uncommon to find gameplay sessions of the latter with the ship girls' voiceovers slapped into them. However, not every WoWs player is amused by this; see Fandom Rivalry above.
  • Game Breaker:
    • This is the reason why Shinden Kai is to date still unavailable other than from the Spring 2013 event; fighter power is one of the very few mechanics unaffected by RNG, and Shinden Kai gives a lot more fighter power than the normal Reppuu. The next best, Reppuu Kai (from Spring 2014) is this to a smaller extent, as it only gives a bit more, but still enough to make a difference.
    • The Fog ships from Arpeggio of Blue Steel, who were usable for the duration of the December 2013 event. Despite starting at level 1, Iona, Takao, and Haruna all had high base stats that rival or outright beat fully-upgraded kanmusu, and what's more the latter two had a Graviton Cannon attack that can hit all ships in an opposing fleet. Iona herself was an egregious example, as she had 70 Health, which was ridiculously high for a sub, never mind her high Attack, high Evasion rate, high Speed, and long Range. Within a day of the start of the event, there were anecdotes of players clearing whole (non-event) maps with them, and their presence in a PvP team caused a lot of headaches.
    • Submarines in general are this. It is well-known that almost any map can be "subcheesed" (submarine cheesing), saving tons of resources that would otherwise have been spent clearing a map the conventional way. (To prevent this, late word maps have insanely high enemy ASW capacity and/or a high probability to encounter a dead end if you attempt subcheesing. Sometimes subcheesing outright fails fleet composition requirements) This also meant that Iona was on two levels of game breaking. At least she didn't have the Graviton Cannon, unlike in the anime.
    • Torpedo cruisers have been overpowered as well, with an extremely strong pre-emptive torpedo strike for little cost. The nerf to Kitakami and Ooi by increasing their ammo consumption has not helped much.
  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff: Surprisingly popular in China, to the point of having its own doujinshi convention there, considering that it's a Japanese game based on World War II. It probably helped that the IJN was nowhere as involved in China as the IJA was. note 
  • Good Bad Bugs:
    • Enemy carriers, be it in sorties or in PvP, used to be able to launch planes at orange or even red HP due to a bug. This created jokes on how Ryuujou should be the only carrier to be able to do that. This bug has since been fixed.
    • Taihou and Akitsu Maru used to have swapped repair times (giving Taihou the repair time of a destroyer). This used to be attributed to damage done to armored flight decks being much easier to deal with than that to standard flight decks until this was fixed about a month after LSC started.
    • Due to a quirk of the game's programming, the same bonuses and penalties are applied to your fleet and the opposing fleet. This leads to ridiculous situations where getting, for example, a T-Cross Advantage (which is supposed to increase attack damage for your ships and decrease it for the opponent's, actually increases it for both sides. Similarly, getting a T-cross disadvantage decreases the attack damage for both sides.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: As soon as Kantai Collection got extremely popular, fanvids started popping up crossing the Armored Core series with it, due to how completely nerdy the fanbase is when it comes to mecha (that is, everybody; it eventually got it own tag called "Kan-CORE" and people have parodied the commercials for AC with Kancolle characters). Several months later, in early-mid 2014, Kadokawa announced they acquired 80% of From Software (developer of AC; it should be noted Kadokawa has had a stake in From long before this), and this made the crossovers even more popular online. Time will tell if From ends up developing a Kancolle game for Kadokawa.
  • I Am Not Shazam: Parodied; Fubuki's obscurity has led some fans to call her "Kantai" as a joke.
  • Intercontinuity Crossover: With Arpeggio of Blue Steel, another series with anthropomorphized IJN warships, care of the anime's endcards:
  • Launcher of a Thousand Ships: The Admiral.
  • Les Yay: Unavoidable, given the huge female cast. The fact that they're based on historical IJN ships gives leave for the fandom to justify their favored pairings (much like Axis Powers Hetalia, oddly enough) — see Tenryu and Tatsuta, or Kitakami and Ooi. Canonically, in the 4koma there's also that thing with Akagi and Kaga, though this was mostly due to Aoba misunderstanding their sisterly hug.
  • Memetic Molester: Tatsuta is infamous for being this, a Troll, or both at the same time, especially to Tenryuu. Danbooru has an entire pool devoted to these tendencies, called "God Damn It, Tatsuta!"
  • Memetic Mutation: Like the Shipping, rampant. Akagi's appetite, Ryuujou's extra flight deck, etc.
    • Hirako Shock/ヒラコーショックnote 
    • 2-4-11.note 
      • Has been an Ascended Meme for a while: back in 2013, the developers collaborated with an Akibahara cafe to do a KanColle novelty cafe event, and one of the desserts on offer was the "Naka-chan Set": 2 little dishes of lime jelly, 4 slices of peach and 11 bite-sized bits of cheesecake (?).
    • Isuzu Farms.note 
    • Levels don't matter!note 
    • !すでのなnote 
    • Myoukou's and Sendai's excessively expressive mid-damaged portraits and Akigumo's arguably weird head proportion became the subjects - or victims - for many collage works by many Japanese communities, usually for humor effects.
    • Wo!note 
    • In the aftermath of the November 2013 event, by which time most of the game mechanics had been deduced, inaccurate information (such as ships sinking at orange) started to be attributed to the Wo-class aircraft carrier. Occasionally, even accurate information gets this treatment, if only to confuse those still unfamiliar with the game mechanics.

      Became Hilarious in Hindsight when a bunch of common claims that were believed to be false and thus attributed to Wo all turned out to be true (It's safe to depart on orangenote , Are you scared? There's no proofnote , Midway is months awaynote , 50k resources is enoughnote , levels don't matternote , you are too paranoidnote ), making players question whether Wo really should be doubted.
      "I will never doubt Wo ever again."
    • "Hey, admiral! It's OK to touch, but there's a time and place for everything!"note 
    • Unicorn, from the Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn OST, has become associated with close-call event clears, after several Japanese players streaming their playthroughs of the Spring 2014 Event chose to use it as BGM, especially when things started too close to maintenance time. See this, for example, where the Admiral literally cleared the final map with mere seconds to spare before Maintenance Time. Makes the crescendo of Unicorn especially cathartic.

      This meme was actually spawned during the Arpeggio of Blue Steel crossover event, where one Japanese streamer was using that track as he was trying to hammer that last bit health from the final boss node. He succeeds, only to get a connection error during the results screen, and upon re-connecting, he discovered in horror that the game auto-resolved the battle as a LOSS and that his ship girls' efforts were for naught.
    • By the way, Gundam and Armored Core is so frequently crossed over with Kantai Collection in fanworks, KanColle could otherwise be called ''Gundam with Ship Girls! .
    • Prinz Chiyonote 
    • Plasma-chan. note 
    • 70万 or 70W (both meaning 700 thousand)note 
    • Kagerou Collection The presence of 14 ships of the Kagerou class, out of the 19 that existed in real life, had led players to call the game this. Not helped by the fact that many of the newly-introduced Kagerous are either a) rare, or b) event-exclusive.
  • Moe: All the ship girls' designs definitely lean in this direction.
  • Never Live It Down: Despite なのです (nanodesu) appearing in only one line (or two, depending on technicality) for Inazuma in the game(initially, at least; she was later given two new lines with nanodesu in it, which is still not that frequent), fanon has it as her Verbal Tic and/or Catch Phrase.
  • No Yay: People who don't like shipping the kanmusu with Wo-class often cite that the latter has tentacles, which somehow makes the yuri no longer 'pure'.
  • The Scrappy:
    • For normal ship construction (which has since spread to map drops as well), Light Cruiser Naka. This is due to her high-than-normal chance of appearing in any crafting recipe where a light cruiser is a possibility, particularly in battleship or recipes used for rare ships. Disgruntled admirals, annoyed at how their hard-earned resources went to waste, just scrap her on sight as a result. She gained a second remodel (who actually has good stats, particularly against submarines), but this generally just means people just keep one, and still scrap the clones.
    • For Large Ship Construction, Light Carrier Jun'you if one is trying for Armored Carrier Taihou. Disappointed admirals joke (like on Twitter) that their "Taihous" are always drunk as a result. Same goes for Mutsu if one is trying for Bismarck or a Yamato-class, to the point where fans have decided her main armament is the "MNB" (Mutsu ni Naru Beam, a.k.a. "Turn Into Mutsu Beam").
  • Shipping (heh heh): With over a hundred female characters, yuri shipping is inevitable. Touhou girls beware, they have a real contender this time. There are also pairings between the fleet girls and the Admiral (regardless of said admiral's sex), but this ultimately falls under the Admiral-Artist's personal preference. Just look at the sheer variety of Admiral-Ship pairings available in Pixiv, for example.
  • Tear Jerker:
    • Considering these characters are modelled after Japanese World War II ships, You can find many fanarts, or even videos, that depict their fates during or after the war. If you're attached to these characters, you'd be best to prepare some tissues. For some, their sinking lines alone would be more than enough.
    • Alternatively, any carelessness that results in the sinking of your ships will cause their souls to turn into demons due to their grudge (Though there is no official mention of this and mainly depicted in fanworks, the grudge itself is mentioned in the official 4-koma, and is the main objective and reason why these ship girls are trained and, in some extent, deployed in the first place). So if they die, you're responsible in sending these girls to be your enemies in the future.
  • That One Boss:
    • The Fall 2013 event's Ironbottom Sound boss, Airfield Princess (飛行場姫, Hikoujyo Hime, aka Evil Henderson Field to Western players) is the prime offender of this trope. She has 500HP, can't be attacked by torpedoes, is accompanied by other strong mooks, and is capable of dealing significant damage to your girls enough to bring them down to low HP. Not only that, without Sanshikidan (三式弾, an anti aircraft ammo), any damage dealt to her is considered insignificant and bringing her down is going to be a lot harder than it already is. To make things worse, the stage leading up to the boss itself is entirely night based. Which means all stats, including yours and the enemy's, are severely raised to critical levels where, if you're unlucky, you're most likely going to retreat halfway for repairs, making reaching the boss itself even more of a challenge.
    • To a lesser degree, the second stage of the above mentioned event is a lite version of Ironbottom Sound. Not hard, but extremely frustrating. The only difference is that Airfield Princess actually regenerates if you don't clear the stage as quick as possible, while the boss of the second stage at least can be cleared at your own pace.
  • That One Level:
    • Okino Island Waters, better known as 2-4. It has been known to be notoriously hard, with as much as five battles in a row (which means, if you had triggered night warfare even once, you'd run out of fuel and ammo.) as well as Battleships and Air Carriers plaguing almost every node. So much that the recommended fleet composition for this stage is 4 Battleships and 2 Aircraft Carriers. note 
    • Kiss Island Shores, also known as 3-2, is only clearable with a fleet consisting of only Destroyers (anything else will redirect you north immediately, where reaching the boss is literally impossible), and you will encounter at least one enemy Elite Battleship along the way, which may or may not instantly send one of your ships into heavy damage, usually forcing Admirals to retreat to avoid their ships being sunk for good.
    • Counter Attack to AL/MI Operation, the final stage of the Summer 2014 event, became this for players who dared to challenge it due to its ridiculous combination of game mechanics (Air Power and Line-of-Sight played a huge role once again) and difficult enemies (with even destroyers that have been shown to be capable of reducing Yamato-class to less than 25% health in one hit) made it a battle of sheer attrition to even get to the boss. The boss itself was the Battleship Princess again, but to add insult to injury if the player's HQ level is lv 100 or greater, the final battle pits the player against two copies of her.
    • Sav Island, aka 5-3, has extremely strict fleet composition rules if you want to reach the boss, with any more than 2 battleships or even a single carrier or light carrier sending you to incredibly dangerous dead ends. In addition, it forces your fleet to go through at least two night battle only nodes filled with enemy heavy cruisers, battleships and submarines. And the boss itself has the Southern War Princess as back up.
  • That One Sidequest: There are a number of quests that require you to clear maps using only destroyers, cruisers or light carriers. They are as much of a pain as you might expect, since you usually end up fighting stronger and tougher battleships and standard carriers. Even worse if the quest calls for a S-rank, as not having a battleship means you lose out on a second shelling phase, which can easily make the difference between getting it and letting even one Abyssal survive.
    • Additionally, any quest that requires a Rare Random Drop ship. Examples include getting all four Kongou class battleships to unlock your fourth fleet, having Akashi as your flagship, getting Akagi, Kaga, Soryuu and Hiryuu, and clearing Expedition 39, which requires FOUR submarines and Taigei.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks:
    • Kongou Kai 2. While the Japanese fanbase reaction so far has been positive, a lot of western fans don't think that way, and they actually prefer the old Kongou design more. Considering how Konishi's art style has been evolving, it wouldn't be farfetched to say that Kongou after her second remodernization looked far different than the old one. The change of her voice (same CV, but somewhat different tone) also provoked a (relatively) low degree of negative response.
    • When her sisters got second remodels, their new art got the same reaction from the fans, albeit to a lesser extent as compared to Kongou herself since everybody already knew what to expect. This still didn't stop grumbling at the varying quality however — for example, Haruna's 2nd remodel art is considered far far superior to Kirishima's.
    • There was an outbreak of remarkably racist commentary in the Japanese fandom when the slightly tanned Hiryu Kai 2 dropped, with a vocal minority of Japanese players calling her a "Philippine/Indonesia Whore" just because she had a light tan. Where these people were when the actually dark-skinned Musashi happened is anyone's guess.
    • Murakumo's Kai 2 didn't even come out for a day before receiving a torrent of derision from Western fans. It was received quite a bit more positively among Japanese fans, as the amount of fanart of her new design shows.
  • Tier-Induced Scrappy: Submarines in practice matches are a nuisance for many admirals. Only Light Cruisers, Destroyers and (although unreliable) Light Aircraft Carriers can attack submarines (and even then they cannot attack anything else if there's an enemy submarine), but the majority of admirals overlook their use in preference over hard-hitting, tanky Battleships and Standard Carriers. The introduction of two additional submarines in the Fall 2013 event didn't help. A subsequent update allowing the change of fleet formation during practice matches mitigates this somewhat, but even then don't expect your destroyers or cruisers to do much damage to the subs with the Line Ahead formation (the offensive formation which is preferred if the opponent's fleet is composed of mixed ship types instead of all subs), unless you have good anti-submarine equipment and no more than two submarines are present in the opponent's fleet. (On the other hand, if you did have said equipment and/or used Line Abreast (the best offensive formation against submarines, and submarines only), an all-submarine fleet meant easy experience points for destroyers and light cruisers.)

    To add to that, ASW equipment is dirt-cheap as recipes go, although the drop rate on depth charges is admittedly on the low side. All a player needs to put together a credible anti-sub squadron is to spend about 15 minutes or so in the factory, since most players have tons of light cruisers and destroyers sitting around.
  • Unintentionally Sympathetic: Some fans can't help but view the Abyssal Fleet sympathetically; after all, in-game they exist only to be sunk by the players' fleets. Of particular note is that the Abyssals that got the most attention from fans were the Wo-class aircraft carriers, of all things. Said vessels were also the frequent subjects of various Heel-Face Turn situations in fan depictions (the reverse is also true especially when you let your ship girls sink, at least according to popular fan assumptions anyway), not to mention being the numero uno fan favorite for couples either involving the Admirals themselves or other ship girls. It's got to the point even the official anthologies feature sympathetic Wo-class.
  • Vanilla Protagonist: Fubuki is essentially made to be this, which probably explains why she's so low on everyone's radar.

     Tropes Present for the Anime 
  • Alternate Character Interpretation:
    • Both the Admiral and Nagato are subject to this after episode 3. Are they commanders forced to make tough decisions that might result in having to sacrifice some of the girls? Or are they completely incompetent commanders that get their girls sunk for no real reason? Take note that, historically, Destroyers were the most numerous ship type fielded by the Imperial Japanese Navy, and were constantly in harms way...
    • Episode Seven notes that the Abyssal Fleet may be tapping into radio communication, which may explain some of the unforeseen surprise attacks.
    • The accusations of incompetence mostly come from players viewing details in the anime through the lens of the game's mechanics. For example, the so-called shortage of instant-repair buckets mentioned in the series is something that no self-respecting player would allow to happen (especially during build-ups to seasonal events). In the real world though, things aren't so simple, and historically the Imperial Japanese Navy's supply lines were stretched thin, especially after the Allies started interdicting their merchant shipping. Another example comes in the infamous "sink at full health" complaint.
    • Kongou, particularly when we get glimpses of a much more mature and sensitive side of her. Is she really that ditzy yet competent? Or is the goofball all a facade? Or is she loopy because of being a Shell-Shocked Veteran?
  • Americans Hate Tingle: English-speaking watchers (or those who bother to post on it) have a rather dim view on the adaptation (see both the Himeuta.net and World of Warships threads on it), to say the least.
  • Asspull: Episode 12 is highly guilty of this.
    • First, Zuikaku and Shoukaku, who could not participate in Operation MI due to previous battle damage, suddenly appear as reinforcements by explaining that instant repair buckets suddenly appeared for them to use.
    • Second, Taihou's introduction is sudden and appears out of nowhere, and she only shows up to provide some extra air support without further development.
    • Third, the Admiral suddenly returns to the Naval District, with absolutely no word on how exactly he got back or what he was doing the entire time he was absent.
  • Awesome Music:
    • "Miiro" by Akino from bless4. Double points for sounding remarkably similar to the theme song of the Arpeggio of Blue Steel Ars Nova adaptation. If the English translation of the song is to be believed at the link, it has quite a tear-jerking theme. Even if you somehow disregard the vocals, the off-vocal version still has epic riffs. It's also used as the music for the boss nodes in the winter 2015 event in the game.
    • Fubuki, the ED.
  • Broken Base: Boy, is it ever. Vocal Minority is well and truly in effect, especially for English-speaking critics.
    • Kisaragi's sinking in episode 3 split the fanbase into several factions. Some fans don't like the direction the series is going, while others are looking forward to it. Others feel the event in question was incredibly contrived and done merely to stir up drama.
    • The fact that the bulk of the episode 3 was a Cliché Storm of generic anime death flags and it all happened nearly identically to Mami's death in episode 3 of Madoka Magica left quite a few people rather annoyed.
    • Episode 4. Showing Mutsuki in denial, and the morale of all the Destroyers at an all-time low? Expected. Dropping the wacky antics of the Kongou sisters into the middle of all this gloominess? Not so much.
    • An example from before the anime begin airing: The fandom is divided on whether they want to see the Admiral's character appear in the anime, or not. Despite an excerpt of an interview mentioning the Admiral's existence won't be shown on-screen, some fans who wanted to see his character have blasted the series for it after it began airing. Unfortunately, events late in the show wind up not helping the matters, as the events make the Admiral, an offscreen character, suddenly important by having the Abyss seemingly kidnap him and by having some intrigue as to why he elected Fubuki of all people to be a Flagship. Some of the discontent the fans felt regarding this was also caused by the fact that in the metagame, the Admiral is an entity similar to the Producer character in The iDOLM@STER series. Within the same season the anime is airing, THE iDOLM@STER: Cinderella Girls also aired, and it featured a Producer character who exploded into popularity just within hours after its first episode aired and topped the popularity poll multiple times. As a result, some fans also wished that the anime did the same.
    Q: What's the current take on the released key visuals for the anime (referring to Kaga, Fubuki and Akagi)?
    A: The basic story is on the main character, Fubuki's growth, her yearning to be like Akagi, and Kaga as Akagi's partner. Other appearing characters are still secret for now. The admiral exists but he will not be shown on-screen.note 
    • Fubuki herself is a point of contention among watchers, due to her somewhat bland nature compared to her co-members of the fleet. This, despite the fact that in staff interviews prior to the airing of the anime repeatedly mentioning that the anime was a vehicle to increase her appeal. Granted, this perception was not helped in the eyes of some players by the fact that Tanaka, the lead producer for the game, is a big fan of hers.
      • In addition, the fact that the anime shows the Admiral dreaming of marrying Fubuki has further polarized Fubuki fans from non-Fubuki fans.
    • People are split over whether or not the show should follow its historical routes or stick with Slice of Life. It doesn't help that the anime teeters on both, occasionally dipping into one extreme one episode and diving into another extreme almost immediately.
    • The announcement of a second season has one set of fans happy that the series will be continued, while another set are angry because they feel Diomedea dropped the ball on the series and they would rather have the series stay dead or see a different studio take the reins.
    • The Reveal in the final episode that heavily implied Kisaragi was turned into an Abyssal had her fans up in arms.
  • Creator's Pet: As Tanaka intended, the anime is mostly Fubuki's story, chronicling her growth. This doesn't stop some watchers from grumbling about the fact anyway, given the many, many colorful characters she shares the setting with. The nonsensical in-universe reason for her even being at the (front-line) base rubbed people the wrong way too: the Admiral had a dream about her. Really.
  • Critical Dissonance: The series is, by all measures, a best-seller, forecasted to sell more than twenty-thousand units in total. Among some English-speaking watchers however, the series was panned particularly badly, especially the final two episodes.
  • Ending Aversion: According to opinion polls, episode 12 is generally considered the worst episode of the series due to the rushed conclusion and further decline in the animation quality.
  • He's Just Hiding: A good chunk of people spoke up about Kisaragi's sinking, saying that she'll either come back or that she can be savable, the latter often getting pointed out that sinking in the game is essentially game over. It repeats again during Episode 7, as some people are mixed on whether Shouhou sank or not. Half say yes due to the historical accuracy and the other half say no due to, among other reasons, the person not saying her sink line.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: Yamato's Big Damn Heroes intercept on an abyssal's dive bomb for Akagi. Someone went ahead and superimposed the Freedom Gundam in the scene, just to drive the point home.Explanation 
  • Hype Backlash: The anime suffered from this greatly. When the first PV aired, fans were eager to see their favorite game animated while newcomers were interested in the concept. However, once the anime aired, it failed to live up to the existing fans' expectations and newcomers either dropped the series early or avoided it altogether.
  • Les Yay: To a ridiculous degree. Episode 3 alone has more "I love you"s than some franchises manage in an entire series, while Fubuki's entire conversation with Yamato in episode 8 could be easily re-interpreted as someone inviting an inexperienced girl to a night of "fun".
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • Water Skating!note 
    • WANKERnote 
    • WHO LIVES IN A PINEAPPLE UNDER THE SEA? KI SA RA GInote 
    • MORPHBALL note 
    • WEEKLY LESBIAN note 
    • Poi~Explanaton 
  • Nightmare Fuel: In episode 11, seeing Operation MI going wrong, with the girls growing increasingly desperate and haggard under the Abyssals' onslaught. Twice.
  • Pandering to the Base:
    • The first episode is pretty much twenty-four minutes of fanservice to players of the game.
    • On the other side, there are some fans of the game that feel that the anime is deviating too much from the source material (Heavy emphasis on yuri despite being very subdued in game, simplification of characters like Hibiki and Ooi, implementing references to game mechanics only when its convenient for drama, etc).
  • The Scrappy: Most people are quick to blame Nagato, as she was the one in command during the mission that wound up killing Kisaragi and the Admiral, while mentioned, does not have actually have any onscreen presence.
  • Shocking Swerve: In episode 3, Kisaragi is sunk in the aftermath of the battle for W Island, which is a huge departure from the first two very lighthearted episodes. It doesn't help that Kisaragi barely qualified as a Mauve Shirt.
  • Tear Jerker: Kisaragi's rather untimely sinking at the end of Episode 3, especially given Mutsuki had earlier promised to tell her her true feelings and never got the chance. The episode ends with Mutsuki obliviously waiting at the cape for Kisaragi to return. Made even worse when you consider that W Island referenced Wake Island, where the real-life Kisaragi sank.
  • They Just Didn't Care: The refusal to show the Admiral despite him being an extremely important character, the almost satirical levels of random Ship Tease, the utter lack of meaningful character development for everyone besides Fubuki, to the entire story just being a retelling of the Pacific War, many accusations of the anime being a cheap, Fanservice cash grab have arisen, especially compared to some of the other official spin-off material.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character:
    • The Abyssals in general, especially the humanoid ones. It's established that they are intelligent since they have the capability to intercept radio messages and use the intelligence to plan counterattacks and sacrifice themselves to protect other Abyssals, but otherwise never speak (with the exception of a single line of dialogue) nor show any signs of characterization or self awareness. Their only role is to act as Monsters of the Week.
    • There are questions as to who thought it would be a good idea to introduce Taihou in the very last episode of the first season with only a cursory introduction.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: The destruction of the main anchorage and the disappearance of the Admiral in episode 9, in any other show, could have been used to fuel all sorts of drama and even a few deaths. Here? It's immediately brushed aside because Nagato happened to have the ledger where the operations instructions were written. It says a lot when the disappearance of the commander doesn't even merit panic or a drop in morale, eh?
  • Unfortunate Implications: Some viewers found themselves very uncomfortable with the historical revisionism present in the anime, where it not so subtly portrays the IJN "winning" the Battle of Midway.
    • Also, this forum post highlights the conflicting feelings in regards to episode 3, since the Battle of Wake Island also led to numerous atrocities on the civilian contractors and the native Chamorros.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome: The Arming and Launching sequence for the ship girls.