Today’s topic is “Playing Games in Manga.” It’s a popular and frequent topic in manga. Not only that, it is also a popular hobby for many manga readers.
I grew up playing games. And though, I wouldn’t call myself a gamer, I still end up playing games with friends and family on an almost weekly basis. As for video games, I think my first experience was when my father bought me my own game for the Atari 2600. Which game? Only the Best game ever!!
Okay, so maybe this is a good example of when games are better left inside the pages of comic books… [I still like it though]
Here are my recommendations for game-centric manga! Continue reading
Platinum End, Vol. 1
by Tsugumi Ohba & Takeshi Obata
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
A depressed youth is saved by a morally ambiguous angel who gives him supernatural gifts that he must use as a candidate to become the next “god”.
Platinum End has a pretty epic start but I’m not entirely confident in it’s future. At this point it may decide to go straight into battle fantasy manga, rather than really focus on the story, and that would be a shame. But, we won’t know for at least 2 volumes.
There was quite a bit of explanation on how this fantasy system works and what the rules of the competition are, so it doesn’t have as much impact or flow as smoothly as you’d hope from a first volume.
It feels a little bit like a re-imagining of death note. [A comparison that they can’t escape.] What if Light didn’t go on a killing spree? What kind of world would he create then? I think it’s an intelligent re-working of a fan favourite. And will create a different enough story from Death Note.
The concept bases itself in an idea that there are several candidates to become the next “god” and they must battle each other to find out who will be chosen. It is a pretty usual one that you’d see in shonen (fantasy battle) series like Shaman King, Hoshin Engi, Gestalt, and many others. So, if you liked any of these series, this might be for you.
However, as far as mood it might be a little darker than death note in terms of imagery, and it does deal with abuse, depression and suicide so if those are things that bother you, you might want to avoid this title.
Overall I enjoyed it! And, I’m crossing my fingers for the rest of the series.
School Judgment, Vol. 1: Gakkyu Hotei
by Nobuaki Enoki and Takeshi Obata
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
I am incredibly disappointed with the lolita element to this title. I get that there’s a whole genre,and some people “like” it, but it is completely out of place here. It was absolutely unnecessary and frankly very offensive. To use nudity and sexual attraction to young children (even in its minutest form) as comedic titillation (in a comic for children, no less), there is something wrong here! For that alone, I don’t recommend this title.
I thought that the story struggled to establish itself. It was a bit too extreme and obnoxious too quickly, and the main character too unlikeable. It didn’t help that his introduction to the series (as a genius arguer) was done through a barrage of nonsensical and poorly established argument. It was the argument of a whiny child… Which I guess he is. But, I believe he’s supposed to exhibit greater mental faculty which was just failed to be established from the first chapter.
However, after the pacing and scenario were fleshed out, I did begin to enjoy the title. But, I’m just not sure if I am willing to read more.
Obata’s art is the star of this title. His style is versatile; moving from the incredibly cute to the horrifyingly grotesque. But never too much of either, and always the right amount at the right time!