I’ve watched quite a bit of isekai anime starting from Sword Art Online, KonoSuba, Isekai Smartphone, et cetera – some of you have been through series such as Log Horizon, .HACK// or even Magic Knight RayEarth as well, but we’re going to talk about this one series that’s on my list of isekai anime that can kickstart one’s interest.
Well, this might not be isekai 100%, but most of this series is done in a virtual world.
imagine yourself as a curious beginner in this VRMMO called New World Online (sounds familiar to me), only to be one of its poster players after a while. That’s Bofuri for you.
Released as a light novel in 2017 and adapted into manga in 2019, the anime adaptation was green-lit and has been aired in Japan in its 2020 Winter season.
The main character
This series is about Maple (or her translated name Kaede, played by rising voice actress Kaede Hondo) and her journey in the VRMMO world, as its mamaw player.
As a character, Maple is patient enough to grind all the way, all for the purpose of adding more defense points as she doesn’t want to get hurt.
The funny thing is, her HP can still be decreased, so technically she still gets hurt – but with all the defense points she got, her pain is just mere ticklish.
The game is also generous enough to give anyone who single-handedly defeats the boss and clear the dungeon in their first run a special set of equipment – Maple did that in just one go. Now, this is where the madness begins.
Back to Maple, she is that kind of player who stretches the boundaries of the game as she does the unconventional with a straight head. This strategy of hers led to becoming one of the game’s behemoth players.
If there’s a lesson that BOFURI wants to share is that in a game, you don’t confine yourself in what you can do as you master a certain field. This series is also a lesson for game developers to be keen on giveaways.
What makes Bofuri special
The pacing in the first two episodes is quick and is chock-full of information that should give you enough reasons to look forward to the next episodes.
The pacing gradually slows down to highlight specific parts of the MMO life – participating in gaming events, making friends, building a guild, among others. These, coming from someone who has not played any MMORPG.
The soundtrack felt laid-back most of the time, with the exception of the major boss battles and suspense-inducing scenes. The insert song “Good Night” which probably serves as the theme song for NWO is actually cool and uplifting if you listen to it closely:
The animation felt balanced, but I observed that there are more features drawn for the action scenes, but I don’t see any oopsies with the rest of the art. I have a benchmark, so I can tell.
If you have been watching angsty isekai anime that leaves a bad taste in your mouth, you’re lucky to have a palate-cleanser with Bofuri. I highly recommend this series.
This series will have a second season soon, but for now, you can catch up with BOFURI in full on Muse Asia’s YouTube channel (for Southeast Asia).