Nakanohito Genome [Jikkyouchuu] – Episode 1 (First Impressions)

This show managed to fly under my radar until I was reading over the summer preview. The premise is simple enough, eight ‘Let’s players’ or video game streamers get a notice that they have been accepted to play in a special version of a game they were all streaming, “The Ones Within – Genome.” a free to play game.
Though I have to ask myself, what kind of game was it? How did appeal to streamers that cover such different genres. Akatsuki Iride, who seems to be the ‘main’ character of our ensemble cast specializes in escape games.  The first person he runs into after being kidnapped (Transported) away from his home and waking up in a forest. He wakes up next to a girl, horror game streamer Karin Sarayashiki.

Who immediately labels him as a pervert as he merely tries to check if she’s alive by checking her pulse. Well, guess who immediately rocked to my least favorite character list. She just sits there for the rest of the episode putting him down over various things, calling him an idiot. There are certain tsundere’s I enjoy, Makise Kurisu is a tsundere that I enjoy…Karin is not. Well, as she travels with him to try to figure out what is going on, they end up being chased by a giant panda.
Giant animals is phase ‘one’ of the twisted game set up by ‘Paca’, a man wearing an alpaca mask that seems to be behind all of this. Though instead of ‘defeating’ the giant Panda, Akatsuki befriends it by talking to it. He just adores the panda and it’s cute little paws.
Karin and Kaikoku Onigasaki (Japanese history/Sengoku period games let’s player.) both think he’s a giant idiot. I think he’s vaguely adorable, if not a little naive. It pays off though, as they clear the first stage. Paca approaches and tells them the goal, they are currently being live streamed and to escape they need to reach 100 million viewer.

From there, we meet the rest of the streamers. It’s a lot of characters to go through, so i’ll probably end up focusing them as they have episodes pertaining to them but their genre’s are Nurturing simulation games, fighting games, puzzle games, stealth games and dating games.

Paca makes the rules very clear, clear the challenges. Get the viewers, resistance is not an option and severe punishments can and will happen to those who break the rules. The second challenge involves a ouija board. Akatsuki, Karin, Anya Kudou (Fighting games) and Zakuro Oshigiri(Stealth games) are the ones chosen to participate in this one. Honestly, i’m not sure how i felt about this part of the episode if only because I actually bothered to read the first few chapters of the manga and the entire second chapter/challenge seemed a lot creepier in the manga then it did the anime.
Either way, Akatsuki nails the challenge again by his carefree way of doing things. Being friends with the ghost, saving himself from falling to his death thanks to his panda friend.

There is something a little strange about the way they animate Akatsuki’s eyes, it’s almost ominous and I can’t help but wonder if it’s a hint of things to come from here on out. After telling the ghost that he can’t burn and go with her now, but that he will return to keep his promise to be friends with her one day. They pass the challenge and move on to the next round.

My general impression of this episode is favorable, I adore the concept in general. A deadly streaming game, it gives me a lot of Dangan Ronpa vibes and Paca is certainly unsettling. I only skimmed the first four or so chapters of the manga before the anime aired, so very quickly we’ll move out of things i’m familiar with.
The art is good, the biggest step up from the manga to the anime is that I can tell Akatsuki and Zakuro apart better in the anime. Akatsuki wears a medical mask for his allergies and Zakuro wears a ninja mask of sorts as part of his aesthetic and it made them easy to mix up in the manga.
The opening is interesting and mostly fun, if not a little generic. Silverlink is doing it’s best with the animation, I didn’t notice any glaring errors or lazy moments, it’s nothing to write home about but overall decent.

I think the driving force for this series will be it’s characters, the challenges and how it approaches the mystery of what happened to all of them. Generally, i’m really interested to see where this is going to go.

Possibility of watching: Guaranteed
Possibility of blogging: Very High

MidnightDevont

MidnightDevont. part time role-player, part time Blogger, Full time anime fan.

You may also like...

3 Responses

  1. Sam says:

    One thing I gave this episode and Karin credit for is that she apologized to Aktatsuki for hitting him when she woke up.

    To the best of my knowledge that is a rare thing in anime.

    I have to say nothing about this first episode really hooked me in. No one seemed to put up anything more than a token resistance to “Paka”. Which would have been fine if it came across as though they were intimidated by him but it never felt that way. It was like the characters just shrugged and said “fine, let’s get on with it then”.

    I just didn’t fell like there were any real emotional stakes.

  2. DexcilaDou says:

    As a fan of the manga, I’m really excited for the adaptation. They cut some parts from the manga that introduce a character that becomes important later, but I don’t think that this adaptation is going to make it that far so I think it was fair to leave it out.

    That being said, I felt that the first episode felt flat.They did a good job of sticking to the manga content wise but the tension that was present in the manga was not there in the anime. This may have been due to the pacing. I found that the pacing was a bit too slow. In the beginning it was fine, but toward the end the pauses between shots destroyed any sort of tension. The second game was supposed to raise the stakes and make it clear that it’s not just a game but the anime fails to establish that. Akastuki could have died twice that game but with the lack of established tension or stakes it’s hard to take it seriously.

    The situation they are in is dangerous. They got kidnapped and dropped into a place with giant monsters/animals and burning ghosts. And they JUST got there so there are definitely worse things to come. Also, Paca seems to know a great deal about them which is unsettling to say the least. In the manga, tension helped established the severity of their current situation and the characters are freaked out but more or less go along with it. This contrast says more about their personalities and adds to the mystery.

    If you take way the tension, it falls flat and becomes a story that wants to be taken seriously but can’t be.

    Right now it feels more like a comedy anime more than anything. I have nothing against comedy but too much of it will completely undercut the seriousness of the story.

    • midnightdevont says:

      I agree, i mentioned it briefly in the review but the second challenge did feel a lot more tense in the manga then it did in the anime. I think the pacing was the issue, given a little more time to breathe i think the second challenge could of shined. We’ll have to see where it goes from here.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: