Well, after months of waiting for the complete release, and after finally watching the original Gunbuster, I finally got through all 6 episodes of the fantastically epic Gunbuster 2 / Aim for the Top 2 / Diebuster (title varies depending on who you ask). And man was this show ever sweet.
AFTT2 is fulfilling in just about every respect. It has great art, animation, characters, and story. The settings have a cool, bright, colorful sci-fi feel to them. And the characters each have an original and distinguishable design. The mech designs are simple and dynamic and just cool to watch. The Gunbuster mech themselves actually remind me a lot of the mech in Gad Guard: simple, cartoonish design, but unlike Gad Guard these mech follow through with some wild weaponry that make for intense, frantic, fast-paced, action sequences that are fun to watch.
The soundtrack plays a big part in upping the dramatic feel to the show, especially during the battle sequences. The opening intro is like a happy j-pop kind of thing. It's catchy and has a good beat (though that didn't stop me from skipping over it for some episodes).
Another thing that I love about both this show and it's predicessor is that they both start out deceivingly slow and simple, but then build up to an enourmous scope and intensity leading up to a god-like climax and end with a perfect final scene. But unlike a lot of other anime that try to do the same, this show has a lot of substance to back it all up. The characters, technical concepts, and plot all drive the thing home to a resounding conclusion. I'm still trying to figure out how they pack it all into just 6 episodes!
I think fans of the original Gunbuster will love this one. Of course it's not as good as the original, but it's still just so much fun to watch, and contains a lot of the visual and story elements that I always want to see in anime but can never seem to find in one place. And the ending is exactly what I was hoping it would be.
As a final extra little tidbit of info, Gainax announced a while ago that they are going to be showing a theatrical Gunbuster vs. Diebuster movie October 1. There won't be any new animation as far as I can tell. It's just going to compile all the anime from the two series into two movies that will be shown as a double feature. I'd love to see that! Check out the sweet poster and the Gainax website.