Summer’s anime season is at its end, which means a few things. It means Winnipeg now has to brace for snow. It means that game releases are about to start hitting fast and furious. But most importantly, it means it’s time to start reviewing anime!
New Game is a slice of life anime about a young woman who decides to apply for a character design job at the company who made one of her favourite games. We start the show with Suzukaze Aoba showing up for her first day at work and having to come to terms with the odd-ball personalities of Eagle Jump Software’s eccentric design team.
New Game focuses on the Character Design team’s 5 members, as well as a few related people in the overall development team. This is a positive, as it allows you to really get to know these adorable characters. I’m not going to try to claim these characters are entirely unique, but even though they have some stereotypical characteristics, the interplay between the various characters creates a interesting and enjoyable atmosphere.
There were two relationships in particular that made the show special for me. The first was between Aoba and Ko Yagami. Yagami is Eagle Jump’s lead character designer – and the inspiration behind Aoba applying at the company in the first place. As Aoba’s ‘hero worship’ is gradually tarnished, respect and friendship gradually take its place. They’re fantastic characters, and the whole relationship is adorable. The other relationship I wanted to mention was between Aoba and another member of the design team, Hifumi Takimoto. Hifumi is the longest tenured junior member of the team, but suffers from severe shyness. So much so that she doesn’t interact with people in person – but is extremely nice and friendly via the company’s interoffice chat program. The interactions she has with Aoba are hilarious – and adorable.
Hifumi is actually the prime example of my next point of discussion… the show features somewhat believable character development. The characters don’t just magically change, but they do gradually grow. Hifumi is a great example. She never stops being extremely shy… but she begins to come out of her shell a bit and begins to make steps forward as the show progresses. Several of the show’s cast of characters show this type of subtle, gradual character development.
The show’s presentation is consistent, but not particularly special. The opening and closing songs are cute and fun, the background music is fitting. None of the music is offensive or out of place, but there’s nothing particularly notable about any of it. The character design is all along the same vein, with heavily cute character design. It felt a little odd to see a show about adults who were drawn this cute… but in a strange way, it fit for this show. The other thing that was a little weird was that there’s this gorgeous moment in the opening, yet the show itself is all very mundane in terms of visuals.
It’s hard to really say too much about the show, since it’s overall fairly simple. That being said, I did have a lot of fun watching this show. The characters are solid, the show ends at a good spot, and it has an interesting premise. In the end, it’s just a good slice of life show.