World’s End Harem (Shuumatsu no Harem) has been running bi-weekly on Shueisha’s webcomic platform Shonen Jump + since May 2016. It’s an erotic suspense manga set in the near future, created by LINK (story) and Kotaro Shono (art).
The year is 2045 and all the men of the world have been wiped out by a mysterious ‘Man-Killer Virus’. 5 men have survived in Cold Sleep while the virus was spreading and are now immune to the virus. Reito Mizuhara is a medical student and the second man to wake up from Cold Sleep. He is told that he must mate with the remaining women to save humanity. He refuses the request as he is in love with his childhood friend, Erisa, and decides to invent a wonder drug for the disease instead. Little does he know, some unknown power is hatching a plot with the MK virus.
World’s End Harem VR will be released in 2019. The 3D anime series will feature 3 5-minute episodes plus a bonus episode. Popular bikini models play the female characters for the motion capture process with famous voice actresses providing the character voices. The characters who will appear in the VR anime are Mira Suou, Akira Todo, Akane Ryuzoji, Maria Kuroda, and Rea Katagiri. MANGA.TOKYO was invited to the advanced experience event to watch part of the VR anime.
The anime will be distributed via DMM and the advanced experience event took place on 17 January at the DMM office in Tokyo. The participants wore a VR headset to get their own individual VR experience. Available at the event were two of the episodes, the Mira Suou Arc and the Akira Todo Arc, in addition to the bonus volume Harem Arc Making of Mating.
The Mira Suou Arc included racy scenes which really push the boundaries of the ‘all ages’ rating. The episode takes place in her room, so players will feel as if they were in her bedroom.
As the Akira Todo Arc was still in production at the time, we watched the VR images of Akira on a big screen. I think viewers will feel as though they are peeking on her. It was shot at a low angle, which was quite interesting.
Bonus volume: Harem Arc Making of Mating is a live action re-enactment of the VR. The bikini models who performed the motion capture process recreate the World’s End Harem: VR Harem Arc in swimming costumes. It’s like a making-of footage shot in a studio, so the viewers would almost feel like the models are there in the flesh.
Comments from Kotaro Shono, illustrator for the World’s End Harem manga
How did you feel when you heard about the VR adaptation?
Because I didn’t know what the content would be at the time, I was convinced that it would be R-rated. I guess many people must have thought the same. [laugh]
There are a lot of multimedia franchises these days, but I really didn’t expect a VR adaptation of World’s End Harem! My editor told me that there are very few manga works which get VR adaptations. I’m pleased that our manga was chosen as one of these select few. I can’t wait to watch the characters I designed in action.
What did you think of the 3D models?
I asked to have the faces of the 3D models adjusted a few times. It’s difficult to objectively see the pictures I drew myself, but I think they skillfully managed to recreate the characteristics of my drawings in 3D.
Which episode do you like best?
I haven’t seen them all yet, but I like Akira’s best so far. I knew that I would be affected by her shy yet cheeky seduction scenes in action.
Could you give us your thoughts on VR adaptations as an original creator?
I think VR is a medium which is still developing, so it experiences more difficulties compared to other media. However, that makes VR adaptations of existing works more interesting! This VR anime features its characters in a way that just isn’t possible for anime or drama CD adaptations. I think players will enjoy interacting with characters in a way unique to VR adaptations.
Could you give a comment to our readers?
Thank to DMM, we can experience and enjoy the world of World’s End Harem in VR. I didn’t expect this to happen! Please enjoy the imagery of, as the name suggests, the ‘harem’ world.
World’s End Harem VR will start distribution on 4 March. The bundle with all 3 episodes plus the bonus episode will go on sale on 29 March.