It seems that most of the anime that I really enjoy and connect with are the ones that I initially don’t plan to watch. I watched KonoSuba 3 episodes in and I had very low expectations of Non Non Biyori before it started and I ended up really liking them both.
At the time when I looked at the New Game! promo posters I did think that the girls looked cute but will I find the story entertaining if it’s based on real life? I added it to my watch list because I wasn’t satisfied on just watching Food Wars and Hybrid x Heart so I decided give the first episode a go.
I can tell you that it was one of the best decisions I have ever made. I was completely captivated with both the story and the characters since episode one. I honestly couldn’t tell you the amount of times that I re-watched each episode on a weekly basis and it does a great job on lifting my spirits and relaxes my mind at the same time.
The story is just so simple and light-hearted and really it’s actually my kind of story. You have a bunch of only girl characters working on a game in an office. Yep, you heard right, not set in a school, but in an office! I think that’s definitely a nice change of pace.
Whilst New Game! doesn’t really have a plot like Non Non Biyori it does have an end goal, at least in this series. That end goal involves all the girls working really hard on their respective job roles to complete the Third Instalment of Aoba’s favourite childhood game, Fairies Story.
When I watch this anime I find that I really connect with the characters. Despite their funny-but-cute facial expressions, this anime feels very realistic and reflects how people feel in real life. All the girls that work in the office are nice but some of them are socially awkward, some more so than others. I can be socially awkward myself, especially in unfamiliar circumstances, so it’s probably the reason why I appreciate them as characters and why I can relate to them so strongly. Haha.
I did sense or detect minor sad elements regarding Yagami’s past but the comedy and light-hearted nature of the show completely overs-shadowed it. Whilst she did have a sour past involving her previous co-workers she persevered and grew as an artist and as a person.
There are elements of character growth, most notably Aoba and Hifumi. Aoba’s growth came with confidence and skill as an artist and with Hifumi is her social confidence. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that she started to come out of her shell since Aoba joined Eagle Jump. Yagami clearly had a lot of character growth too but they all happened before the anime began so she probably doesn’t count. XD
As well as the humour, good story and characters my favourite thing about this show is the camaraderie and affection that the girls show to each other. It’s not often that you see regular staff like Aoba mingle with management like Yagami and Hazuki. I think it’s really nice how they support each other as co-workers and as friends. The best part of it is that their relationships as co-workers and friendship are equally balanced which is why I think they’re very successful with their game making.
Speaking of making games, I feel that I got a good insight on how games are made. I knew that a lot of work went into games by many people but I didn’t necessarily know what teams worked on what. I didn’t realise that the roles were delegated to certain areas to that extent. If I were to work at Eagle Jump with Aoba now I would specialise in creating characters but I would probably fall short with debugging and programming.
I’ve learned a lot about game making in this anime. It may not be set in a school but I’m still learning new things from every episode. =D
This might be impulsive on my part but at this moment I feel that this enters into my top five all-time favourite anime, possibly coming to a close second behind Non Non Biyori. For now, let’s say that this is my favourite new and current anime. =D I’m now waiting for the day when Seven Seas announce that they’ve licensed the New Game! manga. I don’t see any signs at this moment that they’re going to license it but for now I will dream. =)