Sorry for the delay guys!!!
A tagging-horror-manga, I would say.
It all starts on a rather normal schoolday, when in Nobuaki’s class a mysterious message is sent to everyone in the class, announcing that they are now all playing the Ousama Game.
Indeed, they don’t get a choice, they are in the class, they’re in now. Because backing out would be too good a choice. From now on, the class is faced with a new message everyday, containing a task to be completed by the people tagged at the end, and a time frame in which they have to complete the task. If they fail, they receive punishment – and not only that gets out of hand.
What actually got me with this story was the very simple set-up. There’s not much to miss, everyone with a mobile is pretty much screwed here. The story lives from the developing group dynamics, and the inexplicable ways of the Ousama.
It doesn’t need an overly atmospherical art style, it is nothing out of the ordinary as far as the artwork is concerned, it is just your everyday manga, and damn, that really sets the frame perfectly. Everything is almost painfully normal, and then in the most usual everyday style, the threat comes in.
That is definitely the strongest point of Ousama Game, it is a pure suspense manga, and doesn’t employ any crude methods to keep the reader interested.
[SPOILER] What I have to point out though, is that Ousama Game really lost on this when nearing the end. True, there never was a really logical explanation that could cover all the aspects. But the way it did end was so out of the blue, that I think, the ending really messed up. [END]
Ousama Game, originally a cellphone novel, is one of those suspense mangas, that are close enough to reality to really keep you into it a long while. Then end may not be everyone’s taste, but then again, ends are never really well liked. If you really liked Judge, we kind of are on a similar track here again as well, it’s not a copy, but familiar enough, that I can say, you will enjoy both. It still isn’t a manga for those hardcore realists, but those that prefer a down to earth story. Not recommended for those, that need a supernatural twist.
Ousama Game – FACTS
by Renda Hitori & Kanazawa Nobuaki
Published in 2010 by Futabasha.
Movie by Norio Tsuruta, 2011 (MGM Home Entertainment)
Novel by Nobuaki Kanazawa
Recommended for: everyone who didn’t like the gimmicks in Detective Conan, or who already enjoyed Judge. Not for fantasy fanatics.