New Game! Episode 1 Review

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The latest anime about cute girls doing cute things features Suzukaze Aoba, a high school graduate who begins working at Eagle Jump, a video game company.

The show begins with our protagonist, Suzukaze Aoba, commuting to work and then standing in front of her new work place, psyching herself up.

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Dangerous words there, Aoba.

However, an Eagle Jump employee then walks by and assumes Aoba is just a kid student, much to Aoba’s chagrin.

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It turns out said employee’s name is Toyama Rin and she works as an AD at Eagle Jump. Apparently Rin’s title stands for art director, not assistant director. Said misunderstanding happens which leads to Aoba feeling compelled to grovel on the floor and beg for forgiveness. You’re too serious, Aoba!

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Then the OP plays. Here’s a GIF from the OP starring Nene, Aoba’s friend.

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After showing Aoba to her workstation, Rin demonstrates her strong caretaking instincts by asking if Aoba wants anything to drink. In an attempt to demonstrate that she’s an adult, Aoba forsakes orange juice and demands black coffee!

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Can you drink it, Aoba-chan?!

While trying to get used to her assigned desk, Aoba suddenly hears tired moans and then spots a pair of bare feet underneath a desk, causing her to freak out. Is it a ghost? No, it’s a sloppy woman who fell asleep without wearing any pants! The encounter is kind of treated like a fated meeting between lovers, which is then hilariously followed by the Pantless Lady asking if Aoba is in middle school.

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Ouch.

Rin then returns with two cups of coffee. Mixed up drinks and indirect kissing hijinks ensue. Aoba, you’re so young yet you’re going straight for the bitterness of coffee and life. Please cherish your youth more!

Small talk and age guessing then occur. Sloppy Lady claims Aoba doesn’t even look like she’s started high school yet, which is fair. Aoba is then put in the rough spot of guessing a lady’s age. That’s a question that should be handled with care in real life…

Then introductions happen. Turns out Panties Lady is Yagami Ko, the character design for Fairies Story. Said game was Aoba’s favorite game as a kid and causes Aoba to start looking at Yagami with eyes of admiration. And then she bites her tongue. Aoba, you’re way cute.

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Calm down, Aoba!

Aoba is then introduced to the rest of her coworkers. The ones situated near her, at first glance, are peculiar. One girl has a lot of skull imagery and teddy bears on her desk while the other one keeps oni masks and swords and lightsabers near hers. The last girl, Takimoto Hifumi, arrives late and seems to be shy and bad at person-to-person communication. Unfortunately, Aoba mistakenly believes Hifumi to be asocial and is bummed out.

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Faito, Hifumi!
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Ganbare, Aoba!

Aoba then spots a cat and starts playing with it. Said kitty belongs to the director, Hazuki Shizuku, who appears out of nowhere and calls Aoba cute (preach it, Sister).

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Aoba playing with Shizuku’s pussy.
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Shizuku playing with Aoba’s heart.

Dark-skinned gun otaku Umiko then enters the scene, telling the director that she’s late to the meeting. Shizuku, while waving at Aoba, follows Umiko out the door after Umiko fires a few BB gun pellets at Shizuku’s feet. Seems like you’ve already won over the director, Aoba.

 

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Umiko!

Aoba returns to her desk and then receives an instant message from Hifumi, who is apologizing for her previous behavior and offering to help Aoba if she ever has any questions. I wonder about the app they’re using.

Yagami then calls Aoba over and assigns her chapter one of a textbook in order for Aoba to learn the basics of 3-d modeling. Then she goes back to own work, leaving Aoba on her own. Yagami is really laissez faire, it seems.

Yagami then watches Aoba and Hifumi attempt to awkwardly communicate in-person. After laughing, Yagami messages Aoba and tells her to ask Hifumi via instant messaging if she has any questions, not in-person. While messaging each other, Hifumi tells Aoba that she shouldn’t be so formal.

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However, Hifumi’s suggestion then causes Aoba to mistakenly be too casual while reporting back to her superior, Yagami.

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S-she’s trying her best.
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It was Senpai Sabotage!
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Know your place, Aoba ;_;

The clock then strikes 12 PM, meaning it’s lunch time. Now we get to find out the names of Aoba’s nearby coworkers. Skull Girl is Ijima Yuna while Lightsaber Girl is Shinoda Hajime. After a quick back-and-forth messaging between herself and Yun, Hajime works up the courage to ask Aoba out to lunch as her senpai.

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Smug Yun taming the Hajime.

Aoba then asks Hifumi if she wants to join. The poor girl says no and then takes too long to change her mind. As a result, she’s left all alone!

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“I hope you’ll join us for lunch next time.”
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Hifumi’s defenseless against Aoba’s smooth talk.
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THINKING
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Change of heart!
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…but now they’re gone!

Yun, Hajime, and Aoba then have a nice lunch together while Hifumi is by herself. Turns out Aoba is the first kouhai both Yun and Hajime has ever had (at work, I assume). Perhaps Yun and Hajime entered the company at the same time? I can already hear this ship leaving the harbor.

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Smug Yun used Tease on Hajime. It’s super effective!

The group returns to work, but Aoba suddenly needs to the restroom. However, the closest one is outside of the building. This leads to Aoba locking herself out because she lacks an official ID, which is required to reenter Eagle Jump. Yagami needing to use the restroom is what saves Aoba.

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Those are some cute slippers.

However, it turns out that Aoba’s misery was caused by Yagami, who had forgotten to take Aoba’s picture to make an ID. Silly Yagami, that was supposed to have been done earlier in the morning.

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I forgot!

Once Aoba is up against the wall, ready for Yagami to take her take her photo, Yagami wonders why Aoba is wearing a school uniform. Aoba replies that she’s actually wearing a suit, which causes Yagami to adjust Aoba’s clothing. Ship tease already, huh?

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However, there isn’t enough light, so taking a photo for Aoba’s ID is not going so well. Fortunately, Yagami finds a solution and asks for Hajime’s help.

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The force is strong with this one.

Yun, Hajime, Aoba, and Hifumi then decide to have tea time and snacks. While they’re on the clock. The anime world is pretty nice, isn’t it? At least they touched upon how hard Yagami works. I think Japanese office workers do stay overnight like she does, so there’s that.

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Hifumi came prepared to goof off!

Yagami swings by, checks in on Aoba, then says she’ll be giving Aoba work to do soon. Afterwards Yagami tells Rin that Aoba looks to be a reliable quick learner. As she heads outside to the use the restroom, however, Yagami finds out that Aoba is locked out again because she accidentally left her ID card at her desk.

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Real talk, I locked myself out tons of times as a college freshman.

The work day’s now over! It looks like the game everyone at Eagle Jump is currently working on is the third installment of Fairies Story. Since the original game was what got Aoba interested in being a video game character designer in the first place, she’s really excited and fired up!

Aoba goes home, rolls around in bed because she’s so pumped to be working on Fairies Story 3, and then starts talking to her friend Nenecchi on the phone.

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Moe.

The episode ends there. The next one is entitled, “So This is an Adult Drinking Party…” Looks like Aoba is going to a bar with her coworkers.


So far so good for NEW GAME!. The animation doesn’t look cheap (far from it, actually), the funny scenes are actually funny, and the pace is well done. The original source material was a 4koma, but that isn’t readily apparently (unlike other anime that was adapted from 4koma, such as Seitokai Yakuindomo…).

Tune in next time!

 

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