Guilty Crown episode 2 answers one of my questions from last week: The pilots do receive feedback from their mech’s damage.
You might wonder, “what’s the point? They’ll get hurt (and possibly die) all the same.” This fresh concept sits well with me (remote-controlled mechs with dangers for the controllers), because it kinda makes sense. A cockpit would take up space, weight, and valuable electronics. If there’s an emergency ejection mechanism (as all good real robots should have), it would mean more problems. A lot could go wrong, even after one has safely ejected from their mech. What about retrieving the cockpit? For a rebel force like Gai’s Funeral Parlor, losing capable pilots would be a headache. There’s a reason why Tsugumi was closely monitoring Ayase while she was fighting.
On the other hand, if the pilots don’t receive feedback from their mechs, then there wouldn’t be that big of a thrill in the action. Being humans, we do crave for that human element in our fighting, anyway.
The other important thing in this episode is the pilot in the wheelchair, Ayase Shinomiya. Aside from being a fanservice magnet, I’m pretty intrigued with her role in the show. Obviously she has the hots for rebel leader Gai, and it seems that she’s one of the few pilots of the organization, if not the only one. I find it poetic that she’s piloting mechs despite her condition, as if controlling a robot is the only way she could feel the use of her legs, if only by proxy. That, combined with her infatuation with Gai (who looks untrustworthy to me, through and through), gives me the feeling that it’s all going to end in tragedy for her.
Did I mention that she’s voiced by Kana Hanazawa, who’s deviating from her usual shtick? At least Ayase’s much more competent than the last HanaKana pilot I know (Cleo from Broken Blade).
I’ll stay tuned.