Masamune Shirow's Ghost in the Shell Universe is one that stretches across many media, including (but not exclusively) Anime, Manga, written Novels, and Video games, as well as much merchandise.
Mamuro Oshii's 1995 anime adaption of Shirow's concept received both criticism and acclaim on its release, as many saw it as a high quality anime film that did Ghost in the Shell proud, whereas others thought it deviated too much from Shirow's original framework.
The remake of the original film.
Oshii's 2004 follow up to his original Ghost in the Shell film, Innocence is a visually stunning work of animation that blends both traditional and CG elements together. It is thought provoking, with many philosophical ideas being expressed by the characters, but this has lead to some considering the film to be 'unnecessarily heavy' and slow.
In 2006, a follow up to the Stand Alone Complex TV series was released on film, with the impressive budget of 360 million yen (equivalent to US$3.2 million). Created by Kenji Kamiyama, director of the two Stand Alone Complex series', the story takes place two years after the events of 2nd GIG.
In 2008, DreamWorks and Steven Spielberg acquired the rights to produce a live-action film adaptation of the original manga. The film is set to be released in 2011.
Kenji Kamiyama 2002, 26 episode Television series, is set in a sub-universe of the Ghost in the Shell story. It follows all the major protagonists and places of Shirow's manga, but deviates from the manga's storyline in that the braoder narrative occurs as if the Major had never met the puppetmaster of the film version.
In 2004, Kenji Kamiyama followed up his TV franchise with a second series; 2nd GIG, which is set a year after the events of the original Stand Alone Complex story.
Original video animationEdit
Masamune Shirow's original manga from the early 1990's was the first major material in the Ghost in the Shell Universe and introduced the all major characters and philosophical ideas.
Human Error Processor is a collection of four chapters;"Fat Cat", "Drive Slave", "Mines of Mind" and "Lost Past", that Shirow left out of the original Ghost in the Shell manga.
The 1997 sequel to Shirow's original Ghost in the Shell manga, Man/Machine Interface explores the philosophical subjects of the boundaries of human consciousness, and the nature of human identity itself.
THQ's 1997 GITS video game for the Playstation follows an unnamed Section 9 Rookie and their Fuchikoma tank in a number of first and third person situations in the Ghost in the Shell Universe.
In 2004, Bandai published a pair of video games based on the anime of the same name. A third person Action game was released for the PlayStation 2, and a first-person shooter game was released for the PlayStation Portable. The game takes place in-between the stories of Stand Alone Complex and 2nd GIG.
The novel by Masaki Yamada published in 2005, is a prequel to Oshii's Ghost in the Shell 2: Innocence.
The trilogy by Junichi Fujisaku is set in the Stand Alone Complex sub-universe