We have only a few hours left before FALL 2016 begins. More than 60 anime are going to be broadcast this season, and Manga.Tokyo is determined to bring you all the latest news and info from the most reliable Japanese sources and from the production companies.
For our episodic reviews though we decided to focus on our favorites. Maybe we left out some of the most famous titles, but we did it out of love. We don’t impose the titles onto our writers, but instead we let them choose the anime they are most passionate about, so they can write about what they love and you can read something more than a review.
This is the list of the anime we are going to review this season.
Fall 2016 Anime Review List
Udon no Kuni no Kiniro Kemari
Japanese Title: うどんの国の金色毛鞠
- Original Work: Shinomaru Nodoka
- Director: Ibata Yoshihide
- Animation Studio: Liden Films
Souta Tawara is a web designer working in Tokyo. When he visits his family’s Udon place in his hometown Kagawa Prefecture, he discovers a young boy and decided to quit his job to take care of him.
This is going to be our replacement to Amaama to Inazuma. Nakamura Yuuichi who played Kouhei-sensei (Tsumugi’s father) is going to play a very similar role here as well.
Natsume Yūjin-Chō Go
Japanese Title: 夏目友人帳五
- Original Work: Midorikawa Yuki
- Director: Oomori Takahiro, Deai Kotomi
- Animation Studio: Shuka
This is the fifth season of the very popular Natsume’s Book of Friends, a manga series that continually makes the best-seller list in Japan.
Takashi Natsume is a boy who is able to see youkai. This season, Natsume and his bodyguard Nyanko-sensei continue on their quest to release youkai from their contracts in the Book of Friends.
Japanese Title: ガーリッシュ ナンバー
- Original Plan: Watari Wataru
- Director: Ibata Shouta
- Animation Studio: Diomedea
The success of Shirobako has spawned a number of industry-related anime with the latest being the overly cute but generally mediocre New Game!
Girlish Number will explore the life of Karasuma Chitose, a college student who aspires to be an idol voice actress. The seiyuu business is huge in Japan and many fans and actors are looking for a chance to break into the industry. It will be interesting to see how the series will depict the women in the voice-acting business.
3-gatsu no Lion
Japanese Title: 3月のライオン
- Original Work: Umino Chika
- Director: Shinbou Akiyuki
- Animation Studio: Shaft
The game of shougi is not very famous in the western world. It is also known as the Japanese chess or the Generals’ Game, a two-player strategy board game in the same family as chess.
The story will follow a solitary shougi player named Rei and his relationships with a neighboring family and a lot of cats.
Fune wo Amu
Japanese Title: 舟を編む
- Original Work: Miura Shion
- Director: Kuroyanagi Toshimasa
- Animation Studio: Zexcs
This anime is going to be about dictionaries and editors. If you have a knack of words, then this is the first series you should put on your list.
There is a new dictionary on the works called Fune wo Amu (The Great Passage). Kouhei Araki, a veteran editor who is about to retire, recruits one of the young talents of the editing world, Mitsuya Majime, to succeed him and finish his life’s work. Mitsuya who lacks any serious social skills finds himself working with another man named Masashi Nishioka, who is able to express himself better.
Stella No Mahou
Japanese Title: ステラのまほう
- Original Work: Kuroba U
- Director: Kawatsura Shin`ya
- Animation Studio: Silver Link
The second industry-related anime we are going to cover this season, is not so much about the industry itself but the fans. Honda Tamaki is a first-year high school girl who joins a somewhat peculiar group of people that makes doujin (self-published) games.
Shuumatsu no Izetta
Japanese Title: 終末のイゼッタ
- Director: Fujimori Masaya
- Animation Studio: Ajia-dou
Shuumatsu no Izetta is an alternate history anime that takes place in a WWII world where magic exists.
The anime is set in the wake of Germania’s 1939 invasion of its European neighbors. Izetta is the last of a clan of witches that is hiding across Europe, and Fine is the heir to the throne of a small Alpine state called Altstadt, Germania’s next target.
Japanese Title: DAYSデイズ
- Original Work: Yasuda Tsuyoshi
- Director: Uda Kounosuke
- Animation Studio: MAPPA
DAYS is a leftover from the last season. Japan’s high-school championships are very popular (much like collegiate basketball in the US). In an already impressive list of sports anime, DAYS is covering the football slot. Tsukamoto Tsukushi is your regular nice guy who isn’t so good at playing the game but has the necessary perseverance to advance his skills. Kazama JIn on the other hand is a football genius who just needs to find a way to express his talent.
Japanese Title: オカルティック・ナイン
- Original Work: Shikura Chiyomaru
- Director: Ishiguro Kyouhei
- Animation Studio: A-1 Pictures
If you want just one reason to be excited about Occultin;Nine, know that it’s original medium is a Japanese light novel series written by Chiyomaru Shikura, the creator of Steins;Gate.
The story is better described as paranormal science. Nine not so normal individuals are linked through a blog run by Gamon Yuuta, a 17-year-old student. The series wants to play with what we consider ‘common sense.’
Haikyuu!!: Karasuno Koukou VS Shiratorizawa
Japanese Title: ハイキュー!! 烏野高校 VS 白鳥沢学園高校
- Original Work: Furudate Haruichi
- Director: Mitsunaka Susumu
- Animation Studio: Production I.G
Haikyuu is one of those feel-good anime that happen to have a sports theme to go along with all the struggle to become a better athlete. Shouyou Hinata loves volleyball since the day he saw a national championship match on television. Even though he’s a little short to be a volleyball player, he is so determined that he creates a volleyball club and starts practicing all by himself.
The series has everything you expect of a sports anime: great action, a little drama, and the necessary comedic bits that we tend to associate with shounen anime. If you are a fan of the genre, then by all means put Hyakuu on your list.
Mahou Shoujo Ikusei Keikaku
Japanese Title: 魔法少女育成計画
- Original Work: Endou Asari
- Director: Hashimoto Hiroyuki
- Animation Studio: Lerche
What do you get if you combine magical girls and a survival game? Mahou Shoujo Ikusei Keikaku of course!
Based on the popular light novel by Asari Endou and illustrated by Maruino, the Magical Girl Raising Project is about a popular social game that has the ability to grand a lucky girl (1 in 10,000) the chance to become a magical girl for real. The cap right now is at sixteen magical girls, a number that the administration of the game wants to cut in half. And how do you cut in half the Magical Girl population? You have them fight in a survival game!
Lostorage incited WIXOSS
Japanese Title: Lostorage incited WIXOSS
- Director: Sakurabi Katsushi
- Animation Studio: J.C. Staff
Lostorage, a portmanteau of the words ‘lost’ and ‘storage’, is the continuation of the WIXOSS franchise.
The premise is quite interesting: WIXOSS is a very popular game. A chosen few WIXOSS players, known as Selectors, have special cards called LRIGs and wager their memories in Selector battles in the form of coins. Those who lose have those memories erased, while the winners can alter those lost memories.
Nodachiiiii: In Summer 2016, Nodachiiii covered Fukigen na Mononokean. Her reviews often have a literary note to them as she becomes quite attached to the characters and the plot. She is your average awkward gamer and otaku who dreams to become an author. She is going to review Udon no Kuni no Kiniro Kemari and Natsume Yūjin-Chō Go.
Thanasis: In Summer 2016, Thanasis covered Berserk, D.Gray-man Hallow, Danganronpa 3, Fate/kaleid liner Prisma☆Illya 3rei!!, Tales of Zestiria the X, Amaama to Inazuma, and Qualidea Code. He believes in writing subjective reviews and that the beauty (of anime) lies in the eye of the beholder. He mostly uses that excuse to hide the fact that, like Jon Snow, he knows nothing. He is going to review Girlish Number, 3-gatsu no Lion, Fune wo Amu, Stella no Mahou, and Shuumatsu no Izetta.
Robek: In Summer 2016, Robek reviewed Planetarian and DAYS. He is a self-proclaimed eccentric that loves to explore every corner (pun intended) of the series he is watching. This season he will continue to cover DAYS.
Asie: Last season, Asie reviewed Orange and Arslan Senki. If you like a touch of emotion to the reviews you are reading, then Asie is your girl. You will feel like you are fangirling with your best friend. This season she is going for some more serious reads in reviewing Occultic; Nine.
Last but not least, we have two new review writers joining us for FALL 2016, Krismae and Christina. Krismae is going to cover the third season of Haikyuu!!, and Christina is going to review the magical girls of Mahou Shoujo Ikusei Keikaku.
Ready for FALL 2016?
Every season has its own ups and downs, and the same is certainly going to be true for this as well. Nevertheless, we are very excited to review these titles and we hope to see you all in the comments section. You can check all our reviews in our Fall 2016 category.
We also have a new column where we will help you get your head around some of the Japanese words and phrases that you encounter in your favorite series: Lost in Honyaku. Check it out!