Fate is a series of collective media created by the Japanese visual novel company Type-Moon. The series centers around a fictional event known as The Holy Grail War, where participants known as Masters would engage each other in a battle royale with the help of the spirits of fallen heroes that are called Servants. Since the series began in 2004, Fate has gathered a large following online both on the Japanese and the international web, spawning various memes.
Most of the Fate series takes place in the fictional city of Fuyuki in Japan. The story follows an event known as The Holy Grail War, an age old event where 7 mages participate in a battle royale in order to obtain the Holy Grail which will grant the victor one wish. In order to participate, mages must summon the spirit of a fallen hero and form a contract with them. These heroes are referred to as servants while the mage they serve under is referred as a Master. The seven servants that are summoned are categorized by seven classes which are Saber, Lancer, Caster, Archer, Rider, Assassin, and Berserker. Servants are usually referred to by their class names instead of their real names in order to hide their identities and subsequently their abilities and weaknesses.
A common theme in the Fate series is the emphasis on The Chinese Whispers or Telephone effect. Heroes that are summoned for The Holy Grail War tend to bare little resemblance compared to the legends that surround them. This is due to the stories surrounding their lives being retold from person to person over the years since their deaths with different interpretations and errors occurring as the tale gets passed down. This results in differences between the characters appearance, personality, traits, and even gender compared to their legends and historical records.
The first installment in the series was a visual novel titled Fate/Stay Night which was released on January 30th, 2004, in Japan. The game was Type-Moon's first commercial work since its transition from a Doujin group into a company. The story follows Shirou Emiya as he gets involved in the fifth Holy Grail War. Fate/Stay Night has been adapted into an anime series by studio Deen in 2006 and by studio Ufotable from 2014 to 2015. Fate/Stay Night has also been adapted into a movie by studio Deen in 2010 and is going to have another theatrical adaptation by studio Ufotable which has no current release date. A sequel to Fate/Stay Night, titled Fate/Hollow Ataraxia, was released in 2005. The story takes place half a year after the events of the first game and follows Shirou as he discovers he is trapped in a four day loop.
A prequel to Fate/Stay Night titled Fate/Zero was published as a light novel series in collaboration with Nitro+ from 2006 to 2007. The story takes place 10 years before the events of Fate/Stay Night and follows Shirou's adoptive father, Kiritsugu Emiya, during the Fourth Holy Grail War. Fate/Zero was adapted into an anime series by studio Ufotable from 2011 to 2012.
Outside of the three main titles, the Fate series has several spin-offs that takes place outside of the main canon of the storyline. These spin-offs are Fate/kaleid liner PRISMA☆ILLYA (2007), Fate/Tiger Colosseum (2008), Fate/unlimited codes (2008), Fate/strange fake (2008), Fate/kaleid liner PRISMA☆ILLYA 2wei! (2009), Fate/Extra (2010), Fate/Prototype (2011), Fate/Apocrypha (2012), Fate/kaleid liner PRISMA☆ILLYA 3rei!! (2012), Fate/Extra CCC (2013), Fate/kaleid liner PRISMA☆ILLYA 2wei! Herz (2015), and Fate/Grand Order (2015).
Additionally, the series is known to cross over in other Type Moon Media both in and out of it's canon, with it's most notable example being the comedy sketch series Carnival Phantasm (2011) where they interact with characters from Tsukihime, and Fate/Extra where they interact with characters from Kara no Kyoukai.
Fate/kaleid liner PRISMA ILLYA
Fate has went to become one of the most popular series created by Type-Moon. Fate/stay night became the top selling visual novels of 2004 at game retailer Getchu.com. Fate/hollow ataraxia subsequently became the second top selling visual novel of 2005.
As of 2015, the 2006 animated adaptation of Fate/stay night holds a user score of 7.6, the 2011 adaptation of Fate/zero holds a user score of 8.5, and the 2014 adaptation of Fate/stay night holds a user score of 8.5 on MyAnimeList.
On May 27th, 2014, the Fate/stay night subreddit was launched and has gathered over 6.300 readers in a year. Several oher subreddits related to the Fate series also exist such as r/grandorder and r/FatePrismaIllya. Several Facebook pages dedicated to the Fate series were created which have each gathered over 20.000 likes as of October, 2015.
On the art sharing site DeviantArt, typing the keyword "Fate/stay night" would yield more than 24.000 results worth of fanart and cosplays.
People Die If They Are Killed
"People Die If They Are Killed" is a memorable quote uttered by Shirou that was subtitled in the 2006 studio Deen animated adaptation of Fate/stay night. The phrase has since became infamous among the western anime fans community, being a primary example of redundant statements, Failsubs and japanese terms that are lost in translation.
Jam It In!
"Jam It In" is an exploitable phrase (Along with VagOOO and POnOS) originating from an awkwardly-translated hentai doujin in which Saber asks Shirou to restore her magic by telling him to "please put your… that! y…your pOnOs! to my… my… here! my vagOOO!!! and j… j… JAM IT IN!" Shriou's reply of, "You lost me…" has also reached memetic status, due to the situations in which it can be used to respond to a sexual innuendo.
Sakurafish / Every Day Until You Like It refer to a recurring image that features the heroine Sakura forcefully biting a fish. The image is mainly posted on 4chan's /a/ (anime & manga) and /jp/ (otaku culture) boards, with the idea being that posting it on a regular basis will lead to even those that initially hate it to grow used to it and like it. Due to this, threads featuring Sakurafish became commonly accompanied with the text "I'm going to post this every day until you like it." Although initially seen as widespread trolling in 2007 and 2008, through 2009 and later opinions about Sakurafish became more positive, resulting in the image seeing frequent usage in photoshops.
GAR is an anime-related term that is associated with "manly" and "badass" characters. The term is more or less inspired by the character Archer. It originated from an anonymous user on 4chan's /a/ board meant to post "I am Gay for Archer" accidentally posted "I am Gar for Archer". The typo quickly caught on in popularity and was widely used on /a/ and other anime-related internet forums. The term also became popular on the /m/ (Mecha) board due to the popularity of the series GaoGaiGar.
Unlimited Blade Works
Unlimited Blade Works is the incantation used by character Archer during the "Unlimited Blade Works" route in the first game to summon a Reality Marble, a space of altered reality where he is granted unlimited access to copies of legendary swords. The incantation has since been parodied in a series of copypastas, with variations being created and posted on 4chan's /a/ board and on Fate related sites.
Gate of Babylon
Gate of Babylon refers to a golden key that connects to the treasury of series antagonist Gilgamesh which contains every known noble phantasm from across the world. When activated, Gilgamesh is able to summon these weapons from his treasury through a dimensional gate which he then use as projectiles during battle. This ability has become the subject of fanart by fans with variations that replaces Gilgamesh and his weapons with characters and objects from various other media.
Mou Ikkai (meaning One More Time) is the title of a youtube video which features a song playing on a loop while chibi versions of the character Saber, Rin Tohsaka, and Sakura Matou from Fate/stay night perform a dance. Since it was uploaded by youtuber KindAnonymous on May 15th, 2007, the video has gathered over 700.000 views in 8 years.
Being Lancer is suffering
Being Lancer is Suffering is a derivative of Being Meguka is Suffering which pokes fun at the Lancers and their masters in Fate/stay night and Fate/Zero due to the characters having tragic deaths. The joke is more apparent in Fate/stay night as Lancer will die in all three of the game's story routes. The joke has since became acknowledge by TYPE-MOON during the release of Take Moon and Carnival Phantasm where a running gag in the series is Lancer dying from absurd circumstances.
KFC (Kayneth's Fried Circuits)
Kayneth's Fried Circuits refers to a series of photoshops using a particular face impression of the character Kayneth from Fate/Zero. The master of Lancer, he became crippled after being tricked into frying his own magic circuits. The character later became associated with Kentucky Fried Chicken after an image circulated online of a Japanese KFC employee posing as Lancer.