There are very few good Harem Anime's out there; most of the time it gets dull and boring because the situation is repeated constantly, or the jokes just stop being funny. Infinite Stratos is one Harem series that I can say without a doubt is one of the best I've seen, and in terms of hilarity it rivals that of Baka and Test. Except there's more plot to it than Baka and Test.
Our story begins in the future with the hero of the series, Ichika Orimura, finding out that he can pilot an armored suit called an I.S. (Infinite Stratos), so he goes to this academy that teaches people how to use the I.S. And thus events start to unfold as the series goes on. Oh, did I forget to mention that the only people that can pilot an I.S are females, and Ichika is the only man in the entire world that can pilot it. The only thing this series now needs is they're equivalent of the FFF Inquisition, from Baka and Test, to chase Ichika around the academy to make this even funnier than it already is.
Anyway, I actually have no problems with the plot. Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying that the plot is perfect. It's just that some of the anime cliches in this series makes sense. For example; how many people have found a series where the main character doesn't instantly become the stud of it all for no reason, apart from the fact that he/she is the main character. Just look at Kirito from Sword Art Online; he's surrounded by girls that are interested in him. So, what makes this any different? Ichika is the only guy in the academy. The only one...at all...there is no one else. And that makes sense as to why he'll at some point be surrounded by girls.
So, as far as I can remember there aren't really any bad points in the plot, because it all makes sense with what we learn as the series progresses. There are some things that are a bit ridiculous, but they're so small that you can easily look past it and enjoy the series. Especially since, like Baka and Test, you cant take everything seriously. There are some other small things that aren't explained yet, but since this is based on a series of light novels I can expect that what isn't explained in this season will be explained in future seasons.
I'll skip Ichika since I've already explained enough about him above; the only thing I haven't mentioned is that he is a kind, safe, understanding person. Which also explains why the girls like him. Anyway, we also have Houki Shinonono who is Ichika's childhood best friend, as well as martial arts instructor and helps him learn how to use an I.S. Her character doesn't develop that much until the end of this season, but there is plenty of development between her and Ichika. But I will say now that I do not see her as the main love interest in the series. Don't get me wrong; I like her character, but I think that we've seen enough of the childhood best friend story. That and there's more between Ichika and the other female characters than her.
Next we have Cecilia Alcott who is a British transfer student and thinks very highly of herself. Then we have Huang Lingyin who is the second childhood best friend of Ichika, as well as being a Chinese transfer student. Then there's Chifuyu Orimura who Ichika hasn't seen in a long time, and is his classroom teacher. There are other characters that are worth mentioning, but if I do it'll, kind of, go into the realm of spoilers. So, I might as well not mention them and keep more surprises for people who haven't seen this.
As far as animation goes it doesn't look very special. I'm just going to say that it looks like any other anime with a decent budget. The only other things that stand out is the well done artwork in background, and the brilliant fights with the I.S's. Some people might not like to see CGI in an anime that much. I personally agree with people on that, but I do think that if the CGI doesn't stand out like a swore thumb then that's fine. Take a look at the new Berserk movies; the CGI stands out very much to the point that it is kind of terrible. The CGI in the Evangelion movies doesn't stand out that much, which is good. With this you can tell that some of I.S. scenes are CGI, but it's not that bad. In fact they're well done. You can tell that some parts are CGI, but it doesn't completely stand out and distract you from everything else.
First off the music was pretty good. It serves as decent background noise and does a decent job, but it isn't Bleach or Evangelion music where that definitely does stand out on it's own. Some tracks in this series do stand out, but they're very far and few between.
Now onto the dub. The dub was done by Sentai Filmworks who have provided many other dubs for Anime's, but I can only name a few at this point in time. They provided the dubs for Persona 4 the Animation (I think), as well as providing future dubs for the Familiar of Zero season 2 and 3 (possibly 4), and WataMote. If that's not enough to sway you for the English dub then I'll mention that the ADR Director is none other than Matt Greenfield, the man behind the dub for Neon Genesis Evangelion, or had something to do with the original Evangelion series. I can't quite remember. Anyway, moving on.
We have Josh Grelle (Akihisa in Baka and Test, and Armin in Attack on Titan) who plays the lead character Ichika. Then we have Monica Rial (May in Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood, and the new voice of Bulma in Dragon Ball Z Kai and the new movie Battle of Gods) who plays Houki. Brittney Karbowski (Mikasa in A Certain Magical Index, and Black Star in Soul Eater) is Cecilia Alcott, and puts on a decent English accent that suits the character. And finally the legendary voice actress, Tiffany Grant (Asuka in the Evangelion franchise), is Laura Bodewig and she puts on the best German accent I have ever heard. I know Tiffany Grant can speak German, but the accent is very spot-on.
This is a show that portrays a dream that any guy has had at least once in their lives, and that's being the only guy in a school full of girls. The show could have turned out to be crap, but it turned out to be a pretty good show. There's a lot to love with this series, and it is worth looking at.
I give this a recommendation to stream, or rent, either the first few episodes or the whole thing before thinking about buying it, but if you like what you've heard so far and if you like Mech Anime's then I can also recommend a buy. Though I still recommend that people look into it before buying it if they haven't seen it.