An adaptation of the Future Card Buddyfight card game.
Future Card Buddyfight takes place in a more futuristic version of today. The card game connects to a parallel universe through special cards (Buddy Rare Cards) that act as portals. They bring monsters to Earth in order for them to become buddies with humans. Through friendship and courage, they take on and fight challenges, known as Buddyfights, where people of all ages have friendly non-hurtful competitions. The main character, Gaou Mikado has just started Buddyfighting. As the story progresses, Buddyfights are seeming to become a little too real...
Future Card Buddyfight is a brilliant TCG anime, that never takes itself too serious. I find this show a lovable mesh of Pokemon meets Cardfight!! Vanguard.
In contrast to other card-based animes, the characters can actually "fight" in the battles instead of only shouting commands. The characters keep one partner only (exception: Gao), so no time-consuming episodes of them trying to fill their fighting rosters.
FCBF constantly uses the word 'buddy' in any sentence possible. This could potentially annoy you (along with Gao's victory one-liners), or it might make you laugh at the sheer cheesiness.
In my case it made me giggle and try to count all the 'buddies' used in one episode.
This is a kid's anime so it's lighthearted, but the battles can become dark when the (dun dun) dark cores arrive. One of the characters has a dead brother, who is fondly mentioned as well.
There are few fillers in this anime unless you count the two cliché tournament arcs.
I think this is one of the few animes where I loved all the characters and their magical creature friends. My favorite characters were Zanya, Gao, Jin, Asmodai, and Noburu. My least liked would be Tetsuya, who is annoying for the entire first season. Still, I found his character evolving from the annoying, dance guy entertaining and sad. You can honestly sympathize with any of these characters!
There is a serious lack of female characters and only four to five girls buddyfight in the show.
The show slowly introduces its main characters and lesser ones appear often. FCBF never forgets its side characters because ALL the characters have a purpose. At some point, they reappear and contribute to the plot usually in a “Gao gains a new friend/foe”way. This characteristic of FCBF has me eager for its sequel! I can't wait to see them expand my favorites' story-lines even more.
Concerning Gao Mikado, our main character, he is an actual intelligent lead. He is childish and eats a lot, like so many leads before him. He understands when the villain or one of the antagonists are trying to hurt him and OUTSMARTS them... By buddyfighing! Well, this is a TCG show! Some may find him too perfect due to his many wins and use of OP moves, whether you like or dislike him for that is up to you. Personally, I find it different having a character who is ungodly good the first time he plays a game. Almost every TCG or shounen anime has its main lead start out losing before becoming the best in the game. FCBF sets that trope ablaze and stomps and spits on it. You can argue other characters get more development than lovable Gao.
I have seen the dub version, and I can say they did an excellent job casting!
Bushiroad is well-known (or notorious) for reusing its actors. You will recognize their voices in more than one role. I feel like one VA played at least five different characters!
All of the voices sound professional and unique. I enjoy three characters' voices in particular: Kyoya, Shido, and Genma. Although, all of the voices are satisfactory to my humble ears you could be disappointed by where the directors assigned them. Genma and Rouga, middle school students, have the voice of grown men. Another character, Zanya, who has an actual boy voicing him, takes time to like. Initially, his voice was too amateurish. Zanya is considered the cool character, but his VA tried too hard to achieve that effect. I began to like his voice as the episodes progressed though. I think Zanya's VA really grew with his role until his voice became comfortable. His voice shines in the hilarious moments when Zanya freak outs!
Kyoya's voice is my absolute favorite! His voice is angelic. It's like beauty in the form of sound. Ha!
I LOVE the soundtrack! As soon as it is released, I am adding it to my music library.
The music is rock-based and uses ample guitar solos. They also have some songs with electric bagpipes and organs! So cool! All of the music is not upbeat, there are even slow songs where piano is used.
The theme song is catchy! It is one of those “either you love or you hate it” type of things. I don't think it has a neutral ground.
The ending theme (Season One) is horrendous. It is just bad. I thought it was too cutesy and had a bad melody. You will have to skip past it or suffer for 20+ episodes. However, the second and third ending themes are wonderful! They could fall under the “too cutesy” trope, but unlike the first I don't find them grating.
The BGM works well to convey any of the scene's feelings. 10 out of 10!
I love the style and the character designs. Gao's design has a lot going on because he's extra special!
Please watch this anime! I love spending Friday nights or Saturday mornings watching FCBF. All of the episodes are on Youtube, so go binge watch it!
Back when I was a teenager, I was re-introduced to card games thanks to little series called Cardfight Vanguard. The first season of Cardfight Vanguard was a pretty great show. I really adored the more grounded feel of the series as most of the Cardfight were won by still rather than lucky draws. It had great theme exploration such as not running away, communication, teamwork, redemption and understanding one another. The characters were the most part were nicely developed and likeable in they own way and the soundtrack while a bit repetitive at times was nicely executed.
only problems that I had with Cardfight Vanguard Season 1 were the gags, Kamui's junior love triangle BS and the limited animation other than that I really liked the first season of Cardfight Vanguard and I consider it to be one of the best children animes I have seen along with the first season of Gundam Build Fighters. However, notice I said the first season of Cardfight Vanguard. Why because after the first season the series started to lose a lot of charm that made the original season as it became another soulless cash grab by Bushiroad to sell cards. The series got worse quality wise to a point where they are now rushing the Cardfights themselves... When the series got to Cardfight Vanguard as well as G completely lost all respect of Cardfight Vanguard as the series along with the G saga is nothing more but a pretentious fanfic written mess that doesn't even respect the viewer. It was that point where I decided to find another card game anime that I watch weekly along with other seasonal anime and the first thing that pooped up was Future Card Buddyfight a fairly new card game anime that was meant to be a more enjoyable, entertaining child-friendly series compared to Cardfight Vanguard.
At first, I was put off by the title of the series as it seemed too childish for my tastes however despite that I deiced to give the series a chance and after watching the first season of Future Card Buddyfight I have to say this. Future Card Buddyfight season 1 is a great and fun card anime. While it was it not in the same league as Yugioh 5ds and at times Cardfight Vanguard Season 1 in terms of quality and writing Future Card Buddyfight was still one of the more enjoyable anime I have seen in a long while. Now with that said let's begin.
The story follows Gao Mikado an eager young martial artist who becomes Buddies with the Hot-Blooded Drum Bunker Dragon. Receiving a Core Deck Case from Tasuku Ryuenji, a Buddyfight prodigy working for the Buddy Police, he takes his first steps into the fantastic world of Buddyfight.
I really enjoyed the story of Future Card Buddyfight. Yeah, the story may be cliched and predictable in nature but the least the journey towards the destination was a fun one.
For starters, this show is easy to follow as the show goes a great job at established its own setting as well as its characters to the viewer especially kids.
The one thing I really liked about Future Card Buddyfight is that it doesn't take itself too seriously. One of the things that plagued Cardfight Vanguard is that after season 1 the series went off rails where it devolved into an over-dramatic and contrived show series to itself too seriously. Future Card Buddyfight docent do any of this as the show from start to finish stayed true it's good roots which are being a light-hearted card game anime. The show did have some serious moments every now and then but it never went off rails.
The comedy in Future Card Buddyfight is for the most part hilarious as they not only they are very funny but the comedy itself plays along with the shows lighthearted narrative. Some of my favourites include Zanya getting scared by girls, Shido failing his evil antics to Testua's gags. I will admit the comedy did somewhat repetitive as it progressed but never got annoying compare to Cardfight Vanguard comedy with the Morikawa Grade 3 stuff and Kamui's comedic love triangle antics.
Despite Future Card Buddyfight being a more lighthearted show compare to Cardfight Vanguard the series did have some good theme exploration however unlike Cardfight Vanguard I thought the themes explored in this show were better executed here compared to Vanguard. One of the series recurring themes is adult corruption where the adults in the series seemed to have more power than the children an, as a result, the kids would only feel powerlessly unable to do anything. The theme also plays along into certain characters in the series manly Tasuku. Other themes that Future Card Buddyfight explores is friendship, confidence, pride and superiority.
My favourite arc in this Season 1 of Future Card Buddyfight is the ABC cup arc due to engaging and entertaining it was. Most of the Buddfights in that arc was not only fun to watch but it's filled with good engaging strategies and smart plays. My favourite fight in that arc was Rouga vs Jin. That fight was such a joy to watch as both fighters battle out it restrive settings that they both set themselves. Some other notable fights include Tetsua vs Sophia, Zanya vs Rouga, Gao vs Gremlin and Noboru vs Genma.
Now with all the good out let's talk about things some of Future Card Buddyfight flaws.
First up is the pacing in the Sengoku Academy arc. While the series is indeed being very well paced through most of it run the pacing in the Sengoku Academy arc was too slow for its own good to a point where some of the Buddyfights drag on especially when all of the characters that were introduced in that arc were not all that interesting. Now if I think about it the Sengoku Academy arc was the weakest arc in the season. Minus the good character building for Rouga and Kiri, the arc didn't all that much to the overall plot.
The second and final problem I had with Future Card Buddyfight is Gao's plot armour. It's such a shame because I really enjoyed Gao personality/development as well as his relationships towards characters. I just thought of his wins felt more like asspulls rather than legit victories thought I would admit it's not as bad as some of the asspulls from the Yugioh series as well as Cardfight Vanguard G.
Overall, despite the show flaws, I thought the story of Future Card Buddyfight to be solid.
The characters in Future Card Buddyfight were easily the shows biggest strength.
First, we have Gao Mikado. I actually really liked him. He may appear as this generic shounen hero at first but he's actually a pretty interesting character. Unlike Aichi Gao already has an established background
His backstory was pretty interesting as he before used to be this ruthless guy who would do anything to win even if hurting others in the progress. However in order to make friends at all he to change his mind where he doesn't use ruthless techniques to hurt others in both martial arts and in Buddyfight. This really gives a pretty good insight about Gao's character as a whole as his actions were pretty reliable as he simply wants to escape from being a person that he used to be.
Besides the backstory there's a bit more I have to talk about Gao's as a character.
I really liked his character interactions and relationships towards the other characters as he wanted to support and help his friends take the right path but when he fails he gets pretty upset and he will end up doing anything just to save his friends from corruption and evil.
The one cool thing about Gao is how he's able to use and master different decks and worlds. It really makes Gao think twice about the moves that he's going to play against set opponents using set deck.
Now as much I enjoyed Gao as a character I have one problem with him and it's not about the character but rather how the plot treats him. You see despite Gao being a solidly written character who has character flaws there was a couple of instances where the plot wanted him to be this generic overpowered protagonist even though the series at various points showcases that he is a flawed character. I honestly wished the showed treated Gao a bit better because outside of all of the plot conveniences that the story gives his a likeable and fun character to be around. Overall, despite how the plot treats him at times, Gao is a pretty good character.
Next, we have Tasuku. I really liked Tasuku. He's a friendly individual who is nice to everyone that he meets. However, despite his kindness he's want's to grow up faster as he works as a Buddy Police officer where he protects the world from crime done by criminal buddyfighters.
Despite him being a successful buddy police officer, he feels that the buddy police force is corrupted as shown later on the series he gets very frustrated with the buddy police organisation as a whole as he quickly falls into darkness where he joins team Disaster as the Purgatory Knight.
After getting defeated by Gao in the final match he starts doing through a mini redemption arc where he starts feeling ashamed and guilty of everything that he has done as the Purgatory Knight. (End of Spoilers)
Despite the lack of screen time in the first half I found Tasuku to be a nicely developed and written character that I enjoyed from start to finish.
I absolutely adored Kiri no am kidding I really like the show did with his characters. He starts off as this timid boy who would look up with his senpai being Gao. However, a couple of plot twists and plot aspects Kiri starts to grow as a character whereby the end of the show he's like a totally different person where it literally becomes a likeable badass. He's easily my third favourite character.
Now we have Zayna. While I didn't care for him all that much in the beginning due to him being a solo who prefers to work alone rather than with other however as the series progresses he starts to become quite a cool character as he starts to open up to people as well trusting them.
Despite him being a cool character overall the thing that hurts him quite a bit is he's afraid of girls and is not talking about his being afraid of girls boobs or anything but he literally cannot talk or go against a girl in a Buddyfight. I don't know why the writers didn't give him a 3 episode arc where he overcomes his fear of girls as that would have been interesting plus we got a backstory that showed how he became scared of girls. Don't get me wrong I still like Zayna as a character but him being scared of girls removes quite a bit of coolness about him.
Tetsuya is an interesting likeable character. Unlike Gao and Zayna where they are dedicated to Buddyfighing Testuya is a dancer who doesn't devote his energy to Buddyfighting and because of those reasons he's basically an underdog and a very good one. Throughout the series people would gossip of how's he's a low rate fighter who cannot win however thanks to his buddy as well his determination he slowly moves up the ranks of being a pretty strong Buddyfighting where we end getting a lot of respect from his peers. If you remove the following characters that I will talk about next, he would be my favourite as he's not only a nicely written character but he's just so fun to watch and seeing improved at the game was so satisfying My second favourite character in the Future Card Buddyfight.
If I had to pick my favourite character in Future Card Buddyfight, it would be Noboru Kodo. I absolutely adored this character from start to finish.
He started off at this arrogant boy who had an inferiority complex where it always diminished Gao's Buddyfight as pure luck rather than actual skill. Typical rival stuff however what made him my favourite character in the series when he's starts to realise that he's not that special. When Tetsuya defeated Noboru in a Buddyfight, he didn't just lose the match but he's lost his pride and confidence to a point. A few episodes later he has gone so far that he was going to quit Buddyfight for good.
However, thanks to El Quixote's advice defeats a criminal Buddyfighter and he started to become more confident about himself. From there he not only has the courage to be himself he also reconciles with Gao where he becomes his true friend again. Because of these reasons along Noboru is my favourite character. Thank you Buddyfight.
Kazane was a fun charterer. While she didn't develop all that much when compared to the other characters in the show she still a lot of fun to watch.
Now I have praised many of the characters in Buddyfight but now it's time to talk about the charterers that I have mixed feeling for and that character is Rouga. Now Rouga is a fun and entertaining character that I enjoyed, however, I feel like the writers did not what to do with him in the narrative as the writers keep on changing what type of character Rouga is. At times he can be lone wolf antagonist, while other the plot portrays as a misunderstood rival. The plot can also as times portrays him like the sword of Kyoya as he would do anything to defeat anyone who gets in Kyoya way while at others he's a typical badass student. This unfortunately really makes him an inconsistent character as I feel the writers had created a character that would have worked in Cardfight Vanguard or Yugioh Arc V.
The other two charterers I have mixed feelings towards is Baku and Kuguru. Despite them being Gao best friends and deck builder/intel they didn't do all that much as characters. They aren't bad characters but any means, in fact, I found the humour to be decent but they didn't leave a lasting impact of the series compared to many of the characters like Kiri, Tasuku and Noboru.
As for the villain origination Disaster, I thought they were pretty good overall. Some were better than others but that they brought enough entertainment to make them enjoyable to watch on screen. My favourite characters in Team Disaster were Sofia and the main antagonist of the season Kyoya.
Finally, we have the buddies themselves and to be honest apart from Asmodai, Jack, Drum and El Quixote they are pretty one-note mainly because they only have single character trait and not much else.
Overall the characters in Buddyfight were great for the most part and them easily my favourite thing about this series. If it weren't for the characters that I simply wouldn't have enjoyed it all that much. Great job Buddyfight.
As for the visuals, I thought the show was pretty good.
The characters designs were unique and fitted well with the personality of the characters especially Noboru who is far the best character design wise thanks hair resembling like an actual brown tiger on the top of his yellow hair. Other notable designs include Gao, Kiri especially his second form, and Tetsuya. The buddy designs were for the most part pretty good despite some of them being in full CGI.
The one thing that I really liked about the visuals is how colourful it is. The series uses its urban smooth colour palette for the background scenery in the series. It really makes the setting of Future Card Buddyfight feel more alive.
The animation in Future Card Buddyfight surprisingly pretty good. It is smooth, consistent, and nicely animated. The show did have some stock footage in certain moments but don't you worry the stock footage doesn't get abused as much compared to older brother Cardfight Vanguard Season 1.
The only issue that I had with the visuals is the use of CGI at times and while it wasn't that bad compared to other shows of its genre it still pretty distracting to look at.
Overall I thought the visuals were pretty good.
The soundtrack of Future Card Buddyfight is pretty good and memorable. It uses a selection of clam, thrilling sci-fi and ninja tracks pieces to enhance the setting and tone of the series. Some of my favourite tracks include Gao's theme, Noboru theme, Grim Reaper theme, I be mine and team Disaster theme.
The first opening Card Of The Future by Psychic Lover is a catchy opening theme that fits well with the lighthearted tone of the series. While the first opening visuals were bland the second opening visuals were much better and engaging.The second opening theme "Buddy Buddy BAAAAAN!! sung by the Seiyuus of Gao and Baku was decent at best. While the song itself was alright the visuals didn't fit the tone of the arc at all thanks to its bizarre tone.
The first ending theme Buddy Buddy Fight!" sung by Paruko Seiyuu Sora Tokui is an ending theme that is so bad it's good. The song itself was very cheesy and the melody wasn't all that good. The only redeeming theme about the first ending theme was the visuals which were pretty solid.
The second ending theme Natsuiro Fighting!! sung by Paruko Seiyuu is a good catch that was a big improvement over the first ending theme. Not only the ending visuals were much better, but the song had a great and catchy rhythm.
The third ending theme Shining Up sung by Hanako Seiyuu is in my top 30 favourite anime ending themes as it was a very sad song that perfectly showcases the lifespan of Gao brother.
I have not seen much of the sub mainly because its most of the episodes didn't get an English translation but I what I remember I thought it was solid.
The dub of Buddyfight is pretty good. The voice actors really did a job with the roles that they were given and it really makes these characters feels more live. My favourite performances were Bacchus, Patricia as Gao, Hannah Dickinson as Kiri, Slusar, Zoe as Noboru and Hanson, Cole as Tasuku. Overall very good dub.
There is no secret that I really liked Future Card Buddyfight.
The story despite being cliched at times was entertaining and interesting to watch. The characters were, for the most part, great and likeable. The visuals were solid and consistent minus the awarded use of CGI at certain points and the music was good. It did have a small couple of problems, though. The Sengoku Academy arc could have been better paced, the plot armour was out of control at times and a small handful of the supporting characters were not that good. Despite that issues, I still made it through the first season feeling a sense of satisfaction. Future Card Buddyfight gain a pretty strong following after it came out as it, not only card game anime watchers into watching it but it also converted many jaded Yugioh/Cardfight Vanguard players into playing the card game itself. If you're looking for a good card game anime that has likeable characters and has a fun addicting plot than I easily recommend Future Card Buddyfight.
The show may not revolutionise the card game anime genre, but I still think it's a great show that I enjoyed.
This isn't the bottom of the barrel. We're through the barrel and plunging into cavernous depths previously unknown to man. This is garbage.
And that's the thing, too. There's no pretension of it being anything other than garbage. Everyone involved knew this was garbage pumped out to kill time on the airwaves and shill a third rate collectible card game. If the creators made a quick buck, I can respect their business sense. I can only muster respect for Future Card Buddyfight as a scam.
This show is as creatively bankrupt as it gets. All the cliches that Pokemon and its ilk have worn into the ground
for decades are on display, and somehow Future Card Buddyfight bungles every last one of them. Look, I'm not George R.R. Martin, I don't scoff if all the meticulous inner workings of a setting aren't accounted for. I can suspend my disbelief, especially for a kids show, but this is just stupid. There was no effort or thought put into any of this. That goes to the insanely cookie cutter characters, as well.
I gave Aldnoah Zero's Second Season a 3 because, for as insipid as it was, it at least felt like there was some creative, artistic spark, even if the execution was terrible. Future Card Buddyfight doesn't even have that. It's just cynical.
As far as positives go, a friend and I got a few good laughs at its expense. The main character's mom is obviously the best girl. It's sometimes animated. That's all I've got.
As a show, Future Card Buddyfight is a turgid, rancid failure. Don't let any kids waste their time on it. They deserve better. We all deserve better.
Trading card games can get intense, and the players are passionate, but in Digimon Tamers, the game is on a whole new level where having a quick mind is required. In this season of Digimon, playing the right card could mean life or death for the tamers and their partner Digimon.