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Anime / Ginga Hyouryuu Vifam

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Wipe away
All your tears
Together we will
Conquer fear

Galactic Drifter Vifam or Round Vernian Vifam or Space Castaway Vifam (Ginga Hyōryū Vifam) is a Sunrise mecha anime that first aired in 1983, conceived by Yoshiyuki Tomino and directed by Takeyuki Kanda. It included mechanical designs by artists Kunio Okawara and Mamoru Nagano, as well as character designs by Toyoo Ashida. A remake, Galactic Drifter Vifam 13 was created 15 years later.

During the year A.D. 2058, hostile forces (collectively known as the "Astrogaters") attack the human colony at Clayad, the third planet of the Ypserlon system, which is located 43 light years away from Earth. Because of this, the colonists on Clayad are evacuated from the planet by the human military. During the confusion, some of the human children become stranded from their parents and escape in the training combat space ship, the Janous. With the help of the ship's defense systems, they manage to arrive at Belwick, the fourth planet of the system, where other humans supposedly live. However, upon arriving they discover that the colony at Belwick had already been destroyed by the enemies too. Learning to pilot the VIFAMs, the 13 children decide to escape to Earth by themselves.


This series contains examples of:

  • Ace Pilot: Roddy proves to be pretty skilled as a Vifam pilot.
  • Adults Are Useless: In the first arc we have a bunch of children holed up in an abandoned military installation with some weapons, and elsewhere on the same planet we have the Terran military in a state-of-the-art underground facility. The children manage to beat back several enemy attacks, while the military base gets wiped out along with all personnel after just one. On the other hands, the attacks against children installation were just scouting by small groups, which weren't exactly even sure that there are anyone here, while attack on military base was full-scale strike with large force involved.
  • A Mech by Any Other Name: Round Vernians. While Earthlings use the term to classify all mechs, the aliens actually refer to them as "machines".
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  • Child Soldiers: Type 1.
  • Dwindling Party: In episode two, the crew of the Janous plus passengers numbers somewhere around 50-100 people. By the end of episode 12 this number has been cut down to fourteen.
  • Foreign Language Theme: "Hello, Vifam," the opening theme, is in English.
  • Manly Man and Sensitive Guy: Roddy and Fred.
  • Military Brat: Kents.
  • Real Robot
  • Sergeant Rock: Bart at times, although he insists that he is a Nice Guy. Kents also tries to be one (towards the kids younger than him, at least), but tends to come off more as a Drill Sergeant Nasty and Butt-Monkey.
  • Tagalong Kid: All of the children on the Janous technically start as these, until the majority of the ship's crew and civilians gets wiped out by the Astrogaters. Marlo and Luchina both fit this role afterwards, while Jimmy turns out to be pretty skilled in his own right.
  • 13 Is Unlucky: The children on the Janous, after Katue, Jimmy and Bart join them.
  • Whole Plot Reference: To Jules Verne's Two Years' Vacation/Adrift in the Pacific.