Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS Lead Actor, Story, Staff Announced

March 24, 2017 at 4:00 pm | Posted in Japanese, VRAINS, Yu-Gi-Oh! | 5 Comments

Shouya Ishige and a Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS key visual image

Japanese producers of Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS returned today to reveal more juicy details about the upcoming anime, including the protagonist’s voice actor, an overview of the story, and the staff helming the series.

Yusaku Fujiki’s Voice Actor

Lead character Yusaku Fujiki and his alter ego “Playmaker” will be voiced by 26-year-old Shouya Ishige. With his selection, the producers have continued the trend of choosing a relative newcomer to the anime voice acting industry to play the protagonist. Up until now, Ishige has predominantly been a stage actor. Between 2009 and 2015, he was a member of Japan’s Shiki Theatre Company where his roles included Rolf Gruber in The Sound of Music and Simba in The Lion King.

Story

Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS takes place in Den City, a futuristic world where people duel in a virtual reality space called LINK VRAINS. This system was developed by a large corporation named SOL Technology. All is not well in this world, however. The Knights of Hanoi, a mysterious group of dueling hackers, has infiltrated LINK VRAINS and is seeking to destroy the AI World “Cyberse” within the network. But one duelist is standing in their way: “Playmaker,” who has become well-known for demolishing the Knights of Hanoi without uttering a single word. Little does anyone know that Playmaker is mild-mannered high schooler Yusaku Fujiki, who pursues the hackers to uncover the truth about a certain event that occurred in the past.

Staff

Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS’s production crew includes plenty of notable and familiar names from past Yu-Gi-Oh! series, including:

  • Director: Masahiro Hosoda, an episode director and storyboarder in numerous anime, including Dragon Ball Z, One Piece, and the 1998 Yu-Gi-Oh! series from Toei
  • Series Layout: Shin Yoshida, a prominent and long-time Yu-Gi-Oh! anime and manga writer
  • Duel Layout: Masahiro Hikokubo, the long-time writer of duels in Yu-Gi-Oh! anime and manga
  • Character Design: Kenichi Hara, an animation director and key animator, and the Chief Animation Director of Yu-Gi-Oh! ARC-V
  • Audio Director: Hiroki Matsuoka from Yu-Gi-Oh! ZEXAL, ARC-V, and The Dark Side of Dimensions
  • Music: Shinkichi Mitsumune, a composer in many anime series, including Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters, Revolutionary Girl Utena, FLCL, and Rozen Maiden

(News and images from animate Times, h/t @yugioh_anime.)

Crunchyroll Adds Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D’s, GX English Dub for U.S. [Updated]

March 21, 2017 at 9:00 pm | Posted in 5D's, English dubbed, GX, Yu-Gi-Oh!, ZEXAL | 5 Comments
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Yuma promising to fight for all of the friends he has ever known in Yu-Gi-Oh! ZEXAL episode 140

English-dubbed episodes of Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D’s and Yu-Gi-Oh! GX are at last available on Crunchyroll to viewers in the United States, announced the anime streaming platform today. (Note: See update below.) Both series had long been available worldwide on CR except to the U.S., Italian-speaking Europe, and most of Asia.

With this announcement, Crunchyroll also added season 3 of Yu-Gi-Oh! ZEXAL (episodes 99 through 146), completing the series. ZEXAL is still not available to the U.S., Italian-speaking Europe, and most of Asia.

(News from Crunchyroll.)

Update (March 26): Crunchyroll edited its news post. Originally, it announced that Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D’s and ZEXAL were available to U.S. viewers. However, ZEXAL has now been replaced by GX. Yu-Gi-Oh! ZEXAL, including the newly added third season, is not available to the U.S. I’ve updated this post to include the correct information.

Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS Introduces Rival, Classmate Characters

March 21, 2017 at 6:00 am | Posted in Japanese, VRAINS, Yu-Gi-Oh! | 1 Comment

Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS characters Go Onizuka and Aoi Zaizen

Today, producers of the upcoming Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS anime unveiled the designs of two new characters: Go Onizuka (left) and Aoi Zaizen.

Go Onizuka (鬼塚豪) is described as a rival of protagonist Yusaku Fujiki’s VR alter ego “Playmaker.” When Go Onizuka enters VR space, he uses the moniker “Go Onizuka” (Go鬼塚 — the English word “Go” takes the place of the kanji 豪, which is also pronounced “Go”).

Aoi Zaizen is Yusaku’s classmate. When she enters VR space, she is called “Blue Angel” and is a well-known charismatic duelist.

Yu-Gi-Oh! Labo characters and logo

Yu-Gi-Oh! ARC-V’s final episode will air on Sunday, March 26. Of special note, Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS will not premiere in April as was previously announced. Instead, it will begin on an as yet unnamed date in May. In the meantime, beginning April 5, TV Tokyo will broadcast a special series titled “Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS Fully Dissected! Yu-Gi-Oh! Laboratory.” Each week, Japanese celebrities and personalities will discuss the appeal of the world of Yu-Gi-Oh! and the new rules of the card game. The show is intended to be a beginner’s introduction to the anime and game.

(News and images from Mynavi News 1, 2.)

Previously:
TV Tokyo’s Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS Website Now Live

Last Chance to Buy Yu-Gi-Oh! Transcend Game in VIZ’s Digital Weekly Shonen Jump

March 19, 2017 at 7:00 am | Posted in Duel Monsters, The Dark Side of Dimensions, Yu-Gi-Oh! | 2 Comments
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The December 19, 2016 cover of VIZ Media's Weekly Shonen Jump magazine

If you’ve been holding off on buying Kazuki Takahashi’s Yu-Gi-Oh! Transcend Game manga, don’t wait any longer. The sales period for the Weekly Shonen Jump issues that ran that story is about to end. VIZ Media’s WSJ back issues are only available for purchase for about three months. Since one-shot stories like Transcend Game don’t normally get reprinted outside the magazine where they initially ran, this is likely your final chance to own the issues.

The WSJ issues containing Transcend Game will no longer be available for sale after 1 pm ET/10 am PT on the following dates:

Yu-Gi-Oh! Transcend Game, Part 1: Monday, March 20. Buy it now on VIZ.com, Amazon, comiXology, and Google Play Books for $0.99.

Yu-Gi-Oh! Transcend Game, Part 2: Monday, April 3. Buy it now on VIZ.com, Amazon, comiXology, and Google Play Books for $0.99.

If you live in the United States, you can also find Transcend Game, Part 1, printed in VIZ’s Spring 2017 Jump Pack, a WSJ magazine currently on sale at Scholastic book fairs.

Yu-Gi-Oh! Monster Figure Keychains

March 18, 2017 at 6:00 am | Posted in Duel Monsters, Konami, Yu-Gi-Oh! | Leave a comment
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Grin Studio's Yu-Gi-Oh! figural keychains series 1

Grin Studios is back with even more Yu-Gi-Oh! merchandise. 4K Media (Konami) is highlighting the Illinois-based toy maker’s new Yu-Gi-Oh! figural keychains, which feature the designs of Yugi, Kaiba, and Joey’s monsters. Series 1 includes Blue-Eyes White Dragon, Exodia the Forbidden One, Kuriboh, Red-Eyes B. Dragon, and Summoned Skull. The size of each figure varies but they stand up to three inches tall.

You can find these and other Grin Studio products at select Kmart, Target, ToysRUs, and Walmart stores.

More Grin Studio Yu-Gi-Oh! goods:
Dog tags
Enamel pins

Yu-Gi-Oh! ARC-V Subbed – Episodes 50-99 Complete

March 15, 2017 at 6:00 am | Posted in ARC-V, Japanese, Konami, Yu-Gi-Oh! | Leave a comment
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Screenshot of the Yu-Gi-Oh! ARC-V anime videos page on Crunchyroll

Crunchyroll has hit another milestone in its Yu-Gi-Oh! ARC-V anime releases. Episodes 50 through 99 were added to the platform yesterday in Japanese with English subs. This wraps up the Friendship Cup story line in the Synchro Dimension — the equivalent of season 2 of 4K Media’s English dub.

Next, Crunchyroll is entering new territory. Episodes 100 and onward have yet to be played in any Western country, not even the ones that have already finished airing the season 2 English dub. Exciting! Don’t forget to add the show to your CR queue to always be alerted of new episodes.

My Yu-Gi-Oh! ARC-V – SUBBED Episodes page now has links to all of CR’s latest episodes.

Previously:
Yu-Gi-Oh! ARC-V Subbed – Episodes 1-49 Complete

Yu-Gi-Oh! The Dark Side of Dimensions Japanese Blu-ray Ranks No. 1 in Sales

March 14, 2017 at 2:00 pm | Posted in Japanese, The Dark Side of Dimensions, Yu-Gi-Oh! | 4 Comments
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Limited edition Blu-ray box sets of Yu-Gi-Oh! The Dark Side of Dimensions on display at Tower Records in Shinjuku
Photo by @TOWER_Shinjuku

Yu-Gi-Oh! The Dark Side of Dimensions debuted on home video in Japan on March 8 and is a huge hit. Oricon’s animation Blu-ray rankings for the week of March 6 to 12 reveal that the limited edition BD from Marvelous sold 11,800 copies, making it the number 1 product of the week. Additionally, the standard edition BD sold 5,720 copies, coming in at number 3.

The standard edition DVD wasn’t far behind with 4,208 copies, which placed it at number 2 on Oricon’s animation DVD rankings.

The Yu-Gi-Oh! The Dark Side of Dimensions limited edition Blu-ray includes a print copy of Kazuki Takahashi’s Transcend Game manga, a booklet with key animation, a T-shirt, and more.

Yu-Gi-Oh! Transcend Game (Part 1) Printed in Spring 2017 WSJ Jump Pack

March 12, 2017 at 12:00 pm | Posted in Duel Monsters, The Dark Side of Dimensions, Yu-Gi-Oh! | 4 Comments
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Yu-Gi-Oh! Transcend Game panels in the Weekly Shonen Jump Spring 2017 Jump Pack and an Obelisk the Tormentor promo card

Fans of Yu-Gi-Oh! The Dark Side of Dimensions definitely won’t want to miss the latest Weekly Shonen Jump print magazine. VIZ Media’s Spring 2017 edition of its WSJ Jump Pack includes the first part of Kazuki Takahashi’s Yu-Gi-Oh! Transcend Game manga — a two-part story that bridges the gap between the end of his Yu-Gi-Oh! manga and the events in DSoD — plus a synopsis of the movie. One-shots like Transcend Game rarely ever get reprinted outside the magazine they originally appear in, even in Japan, so needless to say this is an extra special release from VIZ.

VIZ’s Jump Pack is a semiannual magazine that samples popular Jump manga. It’s printed in a larger trim size (7 by 10 inches) and on better quality paper than a graphic novel, and has a glossy cover. The Spring 2017 issue is available now for $10.99 at Scholastic book fairs being held in numerous schools throughout the U.S. This issue includes:

  • Yu-Gi-Oh! Transcend Game, part 1
  • Boruto: Naruto Next Generation, chapter 1
  • My Hero Academia, chapter 3
  • Haikyu!!, chapter 3

And as usual, there are also plenty of extras:

  • An Ultra Rare Obelisk the Tormentor Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG card (JMPS-EN004), illustrated and signed by Kazuki Takahashi. This is a reprint of the card included in the January 2010 print issue of SJ.
  • A Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG fold-out paper game mat and beginner’s guide.
  • A 20-card Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG demo deck that accompanies the guide.
  • A coupon for one free Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG Starter Deck, redeemable at your local Official Tournament Store (OTS).
  • A promo code for $5 off a one-year subscription of Weekly Shonen Jump. (The regular price is $25.99.)

VIZ originally ran Yu-Gi-Oh! Transcend Game in its December 19, 2016, and January 2, 2017 Weekly Shonen Jump digital issues. The company then added both chapters to the free Shonen Jump manga section on its website, where the they were available until March 8.

Previously:
Yu-Gi-Oh! ARC-V in VIZ’s Fall 2016 WSJ Jump Pack

Cover of VIZ Media's Weekly Shonen Jump Spring 2017 Jump Pack

Table of Contents of the Weekly Shonen Jump Spring 2017 Jump Pack

Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG cards and extras included with the Weekly Shonen Jump Spring 2017 Jump Pack

Close-up of the Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG Obelisk the Tormentor card included with the Weekly Shonen Jump Spring 2017 Jump Pack

Crunchyroll Expands Yu-Gi-Oh! Streaming to More Countries

March 8, 2017 at 7:00 am | Posted in Duel Monsters, English dubbed, Konami, Yu-Gi-Oh! | 2 Comments
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Seto Kaiba laughing at Noah's backstory in episode 114

Crunchyroll announced yesterday evening that it has expanded the availability of the English dub of Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters to even more countries. Now, viewers in Canada, Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and Ireland can watch all 236 episodes of the anime on CR. The series is now available globally on CR except for the United States, Italy, San Marino, Vatican City, and most of Asia.

Yu-Gi-Oh! fans in the U.S. can still watch the dub for free on yugioh.com and other Hulu partner sites like Yahoo! View. The show is also available to subscribers of Hulu (all episodes) and Netflix (episodes 1-97).

(News from Crunchyroll.)

Yu-Gi-Oh! ARC-V Season 1 Blu-Ray, DVD Box Sets Available Now

March 7, 2017 at 6:00 pm | Posted in ARC-V, English dubbed, Konami, Yu-Gi-Oh! | 3 Comments
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Cinedigm's Yu-Gi-Oh! ARC-V Season 1 Blu-ray and DVD box sets

Out today from Cinedigm Entertainment is the complete first season of Yu-Gi-Oh! ARC-V on Blu-ray and DVD! All 49 episodes of 4K Media’s English dub are available in your choice of a region A Blu-ray box set for $69.97, or a region 1 DVD box set for $44.99. Each set has two volumes and six discs.

Cinedigm initially released the first volume of season 1 in September 2016. If you already own that, don’t worry. Volume 2 of season 1 is also available separately for $29.93 for the BDs and $19.95 for the DVDs. If you would like the box, however, the only way to get it is by purchasing the season set.

The video in volume 2 BDs unfortunately suffers from the same color issues as that in volume 1. (Check out my screenshot comparisons and write-up for volume 1 for more details.) I’ve reached out to Cinedigm and will update this post if a solution is found.

All 49 episodes of season 1 are now also available for download on several platforms, including Amazon, Google Play Movies & TV, iTunes, Microsoft Movies & TV, PlayStation Video, and VUDU. The HD download-to-own episodes are free of the color problems seen on the BDs.

Previously:
Cinedigm’s Yu-Gi-Oh! ARC-V Season 1 Vol. 1 DVD & Blu-ray: An Overview

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