An infamous doomsayer once said that life’s a bitch and then you die. Fumiya Tomozaki would agree wholeheartedly with that statement, but he would amend it to read “Life’s a shitty game and then you die.” He’s Japan’s best at the fighting game Atafami, but when it comes to life, he’s barely scraping the trash rank. He goes to an IRL meet-up with Atafami’s second-best player, who incidentally happens to be his classmate and angel sent from heaven, Aoi Hinami. She’s incredible at everything else she tries her hand at, and that includes the game of life, so she takes on the role of mentor and teaches Tomozaki the rule set for living a great life, with his first milestone for success being getting a girlfriend before the start of his third year.
Tomozaki has the cynicism of Hachiman Hikigaya but lacks his wit. He has an understandable perspective on life, and while he’s initially skeptical at Hinami’s claims, it’s nice seeing him follow her tutelage simply because he wants a happier life.
This volume doesn’t waste any time introducing the girls. We get the basics of who they are, what they’re like, and their relationships with the people around them. No one gets much page time, aside from Hinami, but it does have the added benefit of not keeping fans waiting to see their nomination for best girl in action. An important note is that none of the girls are tripping over themselves to land on Tomozaki’s dick. One does have a crush on him, but it’s minor, another has a crush on a different boy, and one of them is a molester.
I quite like how the characters speak. For the most part, it all comes off naturally, and I’m an admirer of the line “Just make sure you’re not doing logical backflips to get away from this” in particular due to the imagery it suggests. It has my seal of approval. The “dialogue” between the molester and her victims, however, does not.
The story’s nothing to mail a postcard to your stepmother about, and its elements seem haphazard at first, but it does manage to wrap itself up into a nice little bow.
I enjoyed this first volume quite a lot. I just wish the rest of the series would come out so that I can binge it and forget about my crippling loneliness.
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