Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Full Metal Panic! Sigma Reissue Update

Various Full Metal Panic! Light Novel And Manga Volumes

The Full Metal Panic! Sigma reissue is a Manga ... and yet a light novel. It's complicated.

So it's definitly a Manga reissue of Full Metal Panic! Sigma, that Kadokawa is publishing, not a light novel retelling of the story, which would make even less sense. Yet, they gave it their best shot to cause as much confusion as possible, listing the reissue as a light novel everywhere. And they didn't just stop there, also resizing Sigma to the smaller light novel shape and giving the volumes the respectable names of existing Full Metal Panic! books.

Manga And Light Novel Size Comparison

What's more, they are also numbering the books by the light novel system. For that system, if a "1" is in front, it's a main story volume, "2" indicates a short story collection, "3" a side story collection and "4" is used on Full Metal Panic! Another volumes. Or in other words:

1-1 ... 1-12 Full Metal Panic!  Main Story Volumes
2-1 ... 2-9 Full Metal Panic?  Short Story Collections
3-1 ... 3-2 Full Metal Panic!  Side Story Collections
4-1 ... 4-5 Full Metal Panic! Another  (series still ongoing)

So, what did  they do? Yeah..

Sigma Reissue Volume Numbers

They put a "9" in front, which gives them enough space to fill the numbers 5-8 with other Full Metal Panic! spin off series like Another. Why is this important? Because it's generating a lot negative response from fans, who somehow expected to buy a light novel instead of a Manga. Why would they do that? Maybe, because the Full Metal Panic! light novels are selling well, while the Manga falls a bit short. Do we know that for sure? Of course not. This is merely a guess.

In conclusion, the Full Metal Panic! Sigma reissue is a Manga, disguised as a light novel. It includes all the previously released chapters, downscaled to light novel size. Nothing more, nothing less.

To finish this post, here are the chapter lists for the first two reissue volumes:

Full Metal Panic! Sigma Reissue Volume 1 Chapter List

Full Metal Panic! Sigma Reissue Volume 2 Chapter List


In his latest Blog post Shoji Gatoh, author of Full Metal Panic!, is refering to the Sigma reissue as pocket comics. And so will we from now on.


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