Inazuma Eleven Ares will be set in a parallel world, taking place after the events of the first game, and develop the story from the perspectives of three protagonists—Ryouhei Haizaki, Asuto Inamori, and Yuuma Nosaka.
The story revolves around a group of boys living on an island who love to play soccer. Their soccer club is suddenly abolished, and the only way they can regain it is to win the Football Frontier. Protagonist Asuto Inamori and company leave the island for Tokyo to attend Raimon Junior High School and take on the Football Frontier. But their first match is against the number one-ranked Seishou Gakuen.
Ares no Tenbin is an incredibly strong comeback for the series.
A lot of the context for this review is back in my Inazuma Eleven Reloaded review, so don’t forget to check that one out too.
The series mainly revolves around Inanuki Raimon, a team of transfer students that have been brought in the replace the separated Raimon. As far as standout characters go, none of them really do, it’s always been one of the curses of the series where the characters from the first part of any iteration are destined to be replaced for more likable and established characters as it goes on. One thing
this team has going for it is their head coach, Zhao Jin Yun, Inazuma Eleven has mainly relied on having hardass serious coaches who usually have a reason behind their harsh methods, this man breaks this tired tradition by having a weird and interesting backstory involving him mastering a bunch of sports, being comedically aloof and teaching using things like drawing parallels with soccer strategies to confessing your love to a girl for example, he always manages to match every match feel fresh in regards to how Inanuki Raimon plays and is key to making their fast improvement feel very believable.
The real draw to the series really is in the opponents they face and the ones they set up to eventually join Inazuma Japan in the next Orion anime. After the first few couple of matches, excluding the ones involving Haizaki, Ares hits its stride and has powerful character arcs in every single match, in a sense, the opposing team ends up feeling more like the main characters than Raimon do, some of the already existing characters have their arcs fast forwarded while others have been fundamentally altered but still stay interesting in their own way. While not absolutely necessary, Outer Code is definitely something that should be watched as a supplement to Ares, it does a good job of hinting at what sort of dilemmas some characters will face and how the dynamics have been altered because of the retcon.
Haizaki is arguably more of a main character than even Asuto, his development is something that lasts both cours, essentially revolving around coming to like soccer even though he has only been using it as a tool to get revenge on Nosaka and the Ares no Tenbin system. What starts off as a self absorbed madman turns into an inner struggle over the idea of motive, meeting his arch-rival plants the idea of soccer being something he does because he actually likes it and the viewer gets to witness it slowly grow as he faces people with stronger convictions and as he starts to wonder what being strong even means, it all comes to a head at the final match of the first season where decides to face all these thoughts head on, making it an powerful climax purely through all the new characters its featured.
Though not given as much weight and attention as some of the other antagonists, Kidou and Gouenji play their role as those who help the new set of characters find themselves really well, how the former easily earns the trust of his new team and the way he leads Haizaki and the way the latter helps an Inanuki player find his true calling as striker re-establishes them for a new generation of fans, one’s way of strategically drawing out the best of his teammates and the other’s seemingly unbreakable confidence in himself and his skills sell why they’re going to be key members in the new national team so well.
Afuro might have very little impact in terms of plot, but he does embody makes this show incredibly valuable to the franchise, after his crushing loss to Endou, he has a conversation with an old lady over the nature of his self-proclaimed godhood and where he went wrong in the way he viewed soccer, through it, gives him a reason for his metaphorical rebirth that the original show never gave him, which he carries into the match against Inanuki Raimon. The match ends up being one of the most unique ones thematically, where it’s the main characters who end up being taught something important rather than the ones they face. Zeus, by extension because of their captain, encapsulate how revolutionizes everything: in the same way it did it with Afuro, Ares is meant to shorten arcs and make characters relevant in ways they weren’t before, yet still keep the core of what made them so special, like Aphrodite becoming a compelling figure who learns that caring for others is what makes him who he is and why he has so much fun.
The Fubuki twins were another interesting aspect of the series, the rumored unbeatable duo was mainly used to convey how they can always improve through the help of others. Atsuya initially only relies on Shirou, having very little communication going on with his other teammates, works with Nae to bring out her hidden potential and, in turn, his too, symbolized with the already powerful Double White Impact being upgraded to Triple Blizzard by her lending a hand. In essence, it keeps the core theme of drawing the best out of someone that the character of Fubuki is known for, but adapts it to make use of multiple characters with just a couple of episodes instead of making something with a long tragic backstory that requires multiple tries and a heavy dose of angst.
Tatsuya and Hiroto are arguably the best set of characters in the whole season, they have the most thought put behind their backstories, the attention to detail regarding their plays and presentation, their difference in personality. Tatsuya, formerly known as Hiroto until the retcon, has been affected the most out of anyone because of the changes, he no longer has to carry the burden of trying to be someone else, symbolized by his Ryuusei Blade not looking like The Explosion does, rather his dilemma is now trying to pull that person along with him until they're ready to run on their own. He’s still the earnest kind-hearted character he’s always been, but seeing more of him as a captain than we ever had makes him so much more than that cool dude who came back as a friend in the original Inazuma Eleven, it makes everyone from the orphanage putting their trust in him and why they rely on his presence so much understandable and something to empathize with. Hiroto, formerly known as that one kid who died, has an arc that mostly boils down to being very similar to Haizaki’s, the differences in how they’re handled is what makes it engaging. Once all is said and done, their conflict resolving results in the best moment from the whole run of the show, Hiroto learning his dad’s always cared about him in his own way and him willing to work with Tatsuya to fire off Cosmic Blaster, the best looking cut of animation in all the 26 episodes. Out of any of the characters featured in Ares, they are the ones who have seemingly reached the clearest starting line when it comes to their dream, so what they can possibly offer in Orion is nothing short of exciting.
Endou is the 2nd best thing this show has to offer, but only by very little. We’ve seen him as the main protagonist, as a supporting teacher figure, and now as an antagonist, which he pulls off in such a great way. The match against Tonegawa Tousen was in essence very different from the other matches in the series: because many of the teams didn’t have defense as strong as their offence, most of the matches ended up with over half a dozen points being scored, though only 3 goals were scored in the match with Endou. Taking what has always been the main supporting pillar of morale for the entire series and turning him into someone who our protagonists have to overcome is something most franchises can’t really hope to get far enough to pull off, so him being used this way is surprisingly gratifying. While it may just seem like a simply cool move at first glance, Fuujin Raijin carries so much more weight thematically than it seems, prior to Ares, Endou had followed his grandfather’s teachings until he was pushed to come up with Ijigen the Hand in the FFI arc, but the changes here manage to circumvent that and justify it too, Endou faced one of the best players in the world and felt the weight of it firsthand, so him wanting to come up with a power capable of going up against that is what makes that move feel so heavy, it’s him acknowledging his place as one of Japan’s representatives and how much harder he’ll have to push himself to catch up, also acknowledging his status as legend, both in universe and arguably in a meta-narrative sense too. Although not the match I’d consider the best, it’s great to see him back this way.
With this season making so many interesting protagonists to follow, Orion no Kokuin already has so much going for it, hopefully it manages to make use of them. Even if it doesn’t this season alone has been a wonderful set of gripping personal matches that showcased a bunch of varying and nuanced views about what makes soccer fun and the mindsets one can have to improve. I’m really glad Inazuma Eleven is still something I can look forward to even after all these years.
I am a big fan of the original Inazuma Eleven series. While it wasn’t a flawless series by any means it was still a great anime that I really liked. The story while predictable in nature was for the most part well executed and entertaining to watch. The characters were for the most part great and well written, the visuals while not being great had its own charm and style and the soundtrack while a bit repetitive at times was great. It was not only one of the best sports anime I seen but it’s also the best game adaptation I seen to a point
where it surpasses the source material aka the video games.
Then we have the Inazuma Eleven GO series and while it was pretty good it had quite a bit of problem especially when you into Inazuma Eleven GO Galaxy where series being pretty weird. So there’s that.
When I heard that Inazuma Eleven is coming back in full force I was really excited because it has been 4 years since the final episode of Inazuma Eleven GO Galaxy aired. I thought the alternative setting of the series would be the series back to its great routes in a different way. I thought Inazuma Eleven Ares is going to be one of the best animes of 2018. Sadly Inazuma Eleven Ares was not one of the best animes of 2018. Inazuma Eleven Ares is easily the single most disappointing anime of 2018. Seriously what the hell Inauzma Eleven. You went from being one of my favourite sports series that had great characters and story arcs to this fanfic nostalgia bait series that has no charm and soul.
Let’s get started, shall we?
The story of Inazuma Eleven Ares takes after the Ramion 11 becomes champions of the Football Frontier. However due to Japanese scooer being deemed too weak by the international competition the Raimon Eleven have been disbanded, and its members are sent to different soccer teams across Japan in the hopes of strengthening Japan’s soccer at a national level. Moreover, in the modern world of Japanese youth soccer, sponsorship has become a vital aspect of a team’s survival. A youth team must have a sponsor, otherwise, their club will face disbandment, and are not permitted to partake in matches. The story follows Asuto Inamori and his team, Inakuni Raimon which were made up of players in Inakunijima Island. They have replaced the now disbanded Raimon Eleven team from the first series where they now must compete in the annual Football Frontier youth tournament as full fleshed underdogs.
Saying that the story of Inazuma Eleven Ares is a fanfic written mess is a fast understatement. Am not joking when I say that the story of Inazuma Eleven Ares is almost as bad fanfiction messes that were Stein’s Gate 0 Gundam Build Divers, Gundam Seed Destiny and Darling in the Franxx.
Where do I even begin with this fanfiction mess.
For starters, we don’t see the Inakuni Raimon team train at all but yet as the series progresses we just see them unlocking and mastering overpowered hissatsus right out of the gate. This alone created some serious plotholes and plot contrivance that at various time damages the narrative. I know the Inazuma Eleven were not the best in the narrative directing but some of the stuff that happens here is downright unacceptable even for Inazuma Eleven standards.
For example, where did Iwato even learn the hissatsu technique call the wall. There was no flashback of him practising to that hissatsu technique, there was a monologue of him talking about the hissatsu technique. He just mastered the hissatsu technique out of fin air. Ridiculous…
Next up is the pacing especially in the first episode. I will admit the original series as well GO did not have great pacing either but least these two did a pretty good at establishing it’s setting, tone and character. Here they did the exact opposite. The first episode is nothing but a series of emotional manipulation for the main protagonist who not only he loses his soccer team but he loses his mother due to an illness. I honestly don’t like when a show starts like this because it just feels like a cheap way to make the audience feel bad for set main character that we barely even know yet. When I saw the first episode for the first episode I did not care about Austo struggle because all events were so rushed. What made his even worse is that the show doesn’t give Austo to probably griffe as after he cried in the hill about his mother died a couple of scenes later we him perfectly fine and happy like nothing has happened… We don’t see him baring his own mother, we don’t see monologuing we just see him behave a happy kid. What makes this worse it the directing wherein one Asuto is a happy and cheerful kid however what the plot decided to talk about Asuto’s mother he literally goes full crybaby at times emo on the viewer. This is poor directing at it’s finest people.
Another case of this show shit direction is how almost every single match gets interrupted by sudden flashbacks where the show tries to develop it’s “characters” but the most part it miserably due to how uninteresting the characters are.
It doesn’t help the fact the three main characters are all forwards instead of being a different soccer role killing the show variety.
Another problem with Inazuma Eleven Ares is the new characters absolutely have no character chemistry . Yes a couple of the new characters in the series were inspired by certain old characters but they really don’t interact with each other. This alone crated a chunk of plotholes where the series does a poor job at explaining of how certain new characters were able to know the old ones.
Speaking of plotholes the amount of plotholes in this show is insane to a point where I started to question the writer/director for Inazuma Eleven Ares.
Where did Austo mother get burial in the Island?
Why did Kazemaru decided to become a spy?
How did Kagayama escape prison?
How did some of theses charterers learn hissatsu techniques?
Who is the person controlling the Ares programme?
I could go on and on.
The worst thing about Inazuma Eleven Ares is that is so god repetitive. Almost every single episode has a random scoccer matches. There’s hardly any down time all as the series just want to get back into the soccer matches and it ultimately kills all potential character development.
Overall the story in Inazuma Eleven Ares is nothing but a terribly written fanfic that has no charm and soul whatsoever.
Before I talk about the old characters that we all know and love from the original series let’s go over the new characters first because I have a lot of complaints.
First, we have Austo. not gonna lie I really tried to like him but direction and pacing of the series completely ruin him to a point where it only ends up being an unlikable and annoying character for the first half. His motivation of playing the sport it dumb as he wants to play soccer because his dying mother said so. This is just stupid anyone can write such a script. Austo doesn’t develop well all that much as he still is the same annoying kid from episode 1 and his interactions towards the other characters feel so stuff and unnatural.
Let’s not forget that his a overpowered player who learns some of the most powerful hissatsus even though we don’t see him train for shit. In many ways Austo is no different to Kirito in Sword Art Online where he unlocks some of the most powerful skills, weapons and abilities in the games that he plays.
What a waste of a character if I ever think of one.
Next, we have Ryouhei. Ryouhei is a pretty good character and easily more interesting and than Asuto. I really enjoyed how Ryouhei uses football as a tool of revenge as he tries only beat Nosaka but the whole ares system and his reasoning overall fill justified as we can sympathise with him thanks to he’s well-told backstory.
Now we have Nosaka who is by far the best character in the show. Unlike Austo and Ryouhei he’s the character that I enjoyed on a emotional level. He has a pretty solid backstory where before the events of the series he was diagnosed with a brain tumour where he only has 3 months to live before he dies. The show also a pretty job at making Nosaka a pretty sympathetic character where we know the full existent of his backstory and motivation of playing Ares programme?
Now with Nosaka out of the way let’s talk about the weakest characters on Inazuma Eleven. the New Ramion team. They are just a bunch of Mary sues who not only don’t develop for shit but they are incredibly bland and unoriginal to a point they can put you to sleep.
Honestly the only other character that is even noteworthy is Hiuru aka Kazemaru 2.0 who had the potential to be good but the pacing and fanfic writing completely ruins him.
Now with the new characters done with let’s talk about the returning characters.
Jesus Christ if you thought the new characters were bad enough you ain’t seen nothing yet. While the new characters were mostly a bunch of empty husks avoid with personality and purpose the series took everything that made the old characters great and competently butcher them greatly to a point where all the character that we loved from the original series are now one dimensional.
For example Endou went from being a charming, passionate soccer freak to this one dimensional kid who likes to yell at lot.
The character that got the worst treatment is my favourite Inazuma Eleven character Kazemaru. What a way to kill a character that I adored. In the original series he is friendly competitive guy who liked to face off strong opponents to this dark, soulless and one dimensional spy who barely did anything.
Overall the characters in Inazuma Eleven Ares were pretty bad.
The visuals in Inazuma Eleven Ares are pretty underwhelming even for Inazuma Eleven standards.
The one thing that I didn’t like is how it tried to look too modern by being up to date with the current sport anime but it completely backfired itself as the show can be pretty rough to look at.
The characters designs in Inazuma Eleven Ares range from okay to terrible as many of the characters deigns in this show feels like the animation staff took rejected characters designs from the original series and Go and decided to put them in this series and it really shows. I won’t mention any of the characters but if you’re a Inazuma Eleven fan such as myself you can easily tell of which character designs that the animation stuff decided to scrap while making the original and Go series.
The animation in Inazuma Eleven Ares is honestly below average as the series loves to use animation shortcuts as soon as it can. I will admit the original series didn’t have the best animation but least it had that charm as it perfectly represent the games but the animation in Ares feels like it was done without a second thought.
The soccer matches in Inazuma Eleven are dreadful because not they ridiculously predictable but the matches themselves feel stiff, uninspired. I have never seen Inazuma Eleven soccer matches this lifeless and lazy. It honestly makes me want to turn off my close my video due to how boring they are, It is almost as bad as Megalo Box boxing matches am not joking. The worst thing about the animation is the hissatsu. The hissatsu were meant to be this special skill for each player to use in a match. However the way the hissatus are portrayedin Ares is horrible. Some of the hissatus feel like they came straight from Dragon Ball Z
Some of the hissatsu were so bad it can literally piss off anyone inducing Inazuma eleven fans. When I saw Fire Lemonade in the last episode of the series I wanted to slam my head on a solid wall because who thought that having a hissatsu like that is a good idea…
The soundtrack of Inazuma Eleven Ares underwhelming at best. I don’t mean the old track from the original series as it still great as ever the problem the new track is very dull and lifeless.
The same thing can apply for the opening theme Teppen e Dash! by pugcat’s which is a generic kid’s opening theme that barely has any energy put to it.
The ending theme Koisuru Otome wa Amemoyou by alom is a mediocre ending theme.
The voice acting thankfully is still pretty good overall as you expect.
Inazuma Eleven Ares is one of the most disappointing shows I have ever seen in a long while.
After waiting 4 years for a new Inazuma Eleven I felt insulted of what I got. The story is poorly directed mess that is filled with plot holes and plot conveniences. The characters for the most part were subpar and uninteresting thanks to the shows fanfic writing. The visuals were at best underwhelming and the soundtrack is lifeless. Unless your into bad fanatics I strongly recommended especially Inazuma Eleven fans to avoid this show at all cost because this series is ultimately not worth the wait at all as it will only disappoint you.
Hopefully Inazuma Eleven Orion will be better.
Final Score 4/10
I am a very big Inazuma Eleven fan that's watching the series since it came out first time in my country in France in 2010-2011. I was super young and still I enjoyed it a lot, and when I saw it back in 2018 before Ares no Tenbin starts airing, I got in it even more, and since it became my fucking life. I actually have put a 10 at the original Ina11 series, so what the hell is wrong with Ares ?
I'll surely be comparing Ares a lot with the original series so if you haven't watch it... Well I don't even know why
you're watching Ares if you did not watch the original series.
Let's start with the story. In my mind, that's a nice story, but in the end, it feels... not finished. Ares sure has a sequel which is Orion no Kokuin and is still airing when I'm writing this, but the story is totally different; the plot of Orion is centered on a new character, Mitsuru Ichihoshi (as of now), while the plot of Ares is centered on one of the three characters, Nosaka Yuuma. It feels unfinished and I hate that; as of the fact that when Ares was at its 10th episode, I asked myself a thousand of questions about the plot, the next of the story, that still aren't answered : who's Asuto's father that his mom's letter was teasing about, who in the end was the guy controling all the Ares programme, has he got any background story or is he just a "bad, evil character", why did Kazemaru become so d4rk and what happened to him, and most of all, why the fuck did they tease Natsumi while she just appeared in a text Aki received in the LAST episode. The bad thing with Ares's story is the fact they took way too much episodes to talk about the soccer matches, and there is no background story when they are playing. Some hissatsus popping, here and here, and so it makes the story way less enjoyable and/or alive. Might I also say the backstories are something that almost doesn't exist in this anime. Except for the main characters (and if you call seeing Asuto as a baby a backstory), there is not a single backstory. Also, the plot is centered on only one of the three main characters; Nosaka Yuuma. The only question I got over Asuto was about his father, (as the fact of making his mother die in the FIRST episode was purely for drama and I don't understand what's different with her dead or alive) and I feel like Haizaki's backstory was so much not interesting and that the Akane part was more part of Nosaka's backstory than Haizaki's.
So about the story, I'd say nice but way not enough to just say "good". May it be that I still have the original series in my mind that were way better.
Ares's graphisms are really good and they look awesome. I have nothing to say about the quality. Tho, something did not please me with the graphisms. As it surely is way better drawn than the original series, the proportions are way better for their age and some things are much more satisfying, they are not that much just because we're in a Inazuma Eleven anime. I was deceived because I really thought I was going to find the old graphisms of 2010 again; and I feel like it kind of made Inazuma less enjoyable to watch. The color palettes are not the same and are less satisfying to the eye of a ~2000-born child. Here I'd say, the older the better.
Resuming, I really liked the graphisms but they do not fit a Ina11 anime...
Soundtracks are litteraly the same as in the original series and that's why I noted it that high. Only new OP and ED; I liked the two, to be honest, even tho it felt weird to have a Ina11 OP not made by T-Pistonz+KMC. It surely isn't that awesome to use the same soundtracks, but I really was gone again in the Inazuma Eleven mood because of the soundtrack; Ina11's soundtracks always sounded unique.
Character developpement is pityful. Really. I've been really deceived. Only the three main characters and Akane got a bit developped ; not even the main team. We do not know anything about 95% of the characters of these series. They're all blank characters with not-so-original designs, except for the ones that appears a little bit more than for one match, and the blank characters that got popular got to be only because they are around one of the mains. (exemple: Mizukamiya always around Haizaki) Again, they haven't took enough time to develop the character because of how many matches there are and how long they are too. Even the ones that love Ares as fuck are okay on that point; the characters are not developped at all. Hiura Kirina, that kinda was the new Kazemaru, in the end got as important as Handa in the original series. You feel like Ares's world is only composed of 4 human characters always around soccer player bots.
I did not enjoy watching Ares at all. Again : the matches. Too much. Too long. Not enough backstories. Not enough story/character development. Not enough casual life... You feel like there is ONLY soccer matches and that's making me tired. The training sessions/story development take around 5 minutes for 15 minutes of matches in one episode. It makes everything boring and all. In the end, the only episode I truly enjoyed was the last one and it to be honest left a good image of Ares in my mind, tho it wasn't that impressive in the end. I only have watch Ina11 with GO! and CS apart from Ares, Reloaded and the Outer Codes, and EVERYTHING was way more enjoyable... I am truly deceived by Ares.
Overall, Ares is pretty much mediocre, poor. It doesn't feel like a Ina11 anime, it's not developped at all, and it feels like match spamming for showing super-duper-not-so-badass hissatsu techniques. Also, little thought of mine ; I think taking the original Raimon team would have made this way better, because the development would have already been done and there would be more screentime for new charas/story plot...
I think Ares is only good to watch when you really have watched all the other Inazuma Eleven animes and are curious about it because nothing more to watch... But there is clearly no interest watching it before the original series; not a single one.
(sorry if there is any English mistake in my review!)
Oh no, no more football. Oh no, my mother died. Guess I have to play football because she's dead.
Let's also add a chinese man with slanted eyes and he also does kungfu. A guy that says gosu in every sentence because, uh, unique speech pattern. The dude also scrubs a good wall. Oh and that chinese looking fella boyo, key man, I guess? Maybe he is the leader of the kungfu tribe where these weird chinese coach that uses emojis is part of, at this point I am just saying stupid shit because the review needs to be longer.
What can I say I fuckin