After receiving an invitation from her friend Risa Shiromine, Kaede Honjou begins playing the VRMMO game New World Online as the character Maple. Lacking knowledge of the game, she allocates all her status points to defense. As a result, her movements are slow, she cannot use magic, and even gets attacked by the rabbits. However, she obtains a skill called "Absolute Defense" due to maxing out her vitality points, and a counter skill that kills in a single hit. A "mobile fortress style" novice with a poisonous skill that makes all attacks invalid and overrides all obstacles, she goes off to adventures, disregarding her irregularities.
I must be pretty far from the target audience because many people seem to be enjoying this show a lot while it isn't working for me at all, sometimes for the exact same reasons. I had my suspicions when reading the synopsis, but they are not always reliable and people were spreading hype about this. Here is the main problem:
If everything is perfect, then nothing is interesting.
Everyone loves the protagonist for being cute and overpowered.
Everyone is perfect friends with everyone else. No conflict to be seen here. Never have I seen an MMO community that is so perfectly friendly. Even in terms of light-hearted
anime series, the friendliness is strangely perfect.
Every character agrees on everything. There are no arguments, not even relatively friendly ones.
Every character is pretty much only playing the game for the sake of playing itself. Their goals beyond that are not explored.
Every line of dialogue is limited to what is immediately happening. Nobody tries to think hard about anything. Nobody tries to be witty or play around with words in any interesting way.
Every joke is carefully formulaic and predictable. People falling over at random. People scared of spooky ghosts. The protagonist being really overpowered, which is repeated in a similar way multiple times in every episode.
If you are trying to argue that this show is a parody because of the excessive focus on cuteness and overpoweredness, it would be an incredibly tedious method of parody because every episode ends up doing the same routine. Parodies should play with the tropes in more creative ways.
Normally, this is where I would deliver a long rant, but there is actually very little to say about this show. It is so simple that I have very little to go on about, aside from the simplicity itself. There is nothing to work with. I get it; there are many people who actually like this and don't want to analyze it beyond what it immediately delivers. No hard feelings about the show, but I won't lie about being entertained when I'm not. This show made me neither happy nor sad, neither angry nor amused. I simply got bored. I will just hope for better luck next time.
It was quite sad to see this show get hate for it being a 'Not a realistic mmo' who really cares about that? This show is not only just beyond cute, but it's a great laugh also. Here is why!
Maple is just a treasure honestly. Both in and out of the game, I'd love to be her friend myself. It's also real cute how everyone in the game wants to protect her in the message forms. It really is sweet. But Maple isn't the only treasure, her friend is too. Both of them make a wonderful and amusing team together.
With the story following these
two characters progressing together through this game, and even seeing them outside of the game, it really is cute and sweet. A wonderful friendship. Which is great to see.
The art of the show is really great to look at, along with the sound being great to listen to. Which are even further pluses for the show. Having these two done right go along way.
This honestly reminds me of caution hero from last season, but a more cute and sweet version. I honestly cannot wait to see how further Maple and her friend, or possible new friends go. You should join me! It's going to be one fun ride!
“I never thought moe is the only thing I needed to enjoy a power fantasy isekai show,” was the opening to my first draft of reviewing Bofuri, putting it off as only a cool twist in the isekai genre. However, after seeing what this series has to offer in episode 3, I can’t help but scrap the whole thing and restart—this show is one you should not miss this season!
Watching this show is like seeing your friend who has no clue in video games destroying other players. But you can’t even be salty this time around, since Kaede just a moe girl with no clue
what’s going on. Along the way, her real-life friend Lisa joins her in the adventure to eventual domination, and in the meantime spends time with friendly rivals. This is a ‘cute girls do isekai things’ show and considering anything other than moe as this show’s highlight would be missing the point.
Speaking of moe, these fluffy characters paired with isekai are a match made in heaven. Their backgrounds, as high school girls fit well with how they are in-game. Filthy casuals. But we have been watching try-hards do isekai since the dawn of time, and this is a welcoming change. Instead of seeing world-strongest wannabes dominating the game, we see how the protagonists’ airheaded actions just so happen to correspond to strength in-game, which is hilarious. Add on the fact that they interact both in the real world and in-game adds to the show’s authenticity.
And that’s what the show is going for, authenticity. People see Maple as this newcomer who did great for herself in events, great. Instead of others playing her off as a cheater and dramatising the whole thing, she is respected and recognised in the public eye. Her instant rise to fame then eventually got to the developers, where they then nerfed her build and increased the difficulty of obtaining it. Instead of anime logic, this show runs with—well, common sense!
But this isn’t even the best Bofuri has to offer. Though not perfectly consistent, the stunning animation, vivid facial expressions and buttery smooth fight scenes are great for a seasonal anime. The attention to detail as well. Things like the game menu and notifications are hyperrealistic. My only complaint would be the CG used in episode 2, which it’s good CG, mind you, but CG is CG and CG sucks.
The music is quite ordinary when compared to the animation. The OP EDs are fine, with their sequences showing the side characters as any other show would. What are the highlights are the SFXs, which are carefully designed that, again, make me feel like they belong in a game.
This show is brilliant. In a sea of seasonal anime flooded with isekais, Bofuri carved itself a unique identity that stands head and shoulders above the rest. It’s unfortunate that the clickbaity title had given a bad name to this show. I have a few friends passing on this just because of the title. With no major flaws, Bofuri deserves an 8 and the highest praise I have ever given to any isekai.
Despite how much I actually enjoy this BOFURI, I'm actually not too surprised with mixed reviews it has been receiving. The show isn't meant for everyone to enjoy. It's very wholesome and doesn't really have the main characters entering into any major conflicts; however, for a show lacking a current goal and main conflict (at least currently), the other elements of the show are all shining in their own way.
Though I consider this section at the very least decent, this one in particular is most definitely the lowest area of BOFURI at the moment. The most concerning areas are the skills and equipment granted
to Maple. It takes away from the potential of great plot writing by giving her the greatest luck every imaginable and not finding a way to tie this into the plot somehow. The key element missing from the plot could be summed up by a couple of words: For every action, there should be an equal an opposite reaction. So, if I'm willing to rate the story so high, what is so great about the story?
As far as I can see, there are no glaring issues with the story as of right now. In fact, the great part about the story right now isn't that it focuses on an overarching story, but that it focuses on world-building to eventually set up the story later on into the series. It's clearly not the type of story revolving around one massive conflict, so plot isn't too much of concern in my mind.
I really wouldn't have put the art of this show this high if the animators didn't incorporate good CG in the fights. The art-style itself isn't something 'out of this world', but it definitely above average and makes good use of CG without making it seem overused or awkwardly placed.
The soundtrack for this anime is pretty good. I really enjoy listening to the OP and ED for BOFURI. The soundtrack/OSTs used in the anime are usually very fitting for the current scene and I've really come to like them, but currently, I don't have an OST that really sticks out, so I don't see myself putting this section any higher right now.
Aside from the moments on-screen we get of Maple and Sally, I think the characters are still very one-dimensional at the moment. It's only four episodes in, so I don't think that is something that should be concerning at the moment. As far as their personalities are concerned, both Maple and Sally have really distinguishable personalities and are very unique to the other characters that have been introduced. Overall, I don't see any issues in the characters' personality and background.
There are plenty of comedic moments in BOFURI that have really hit hard when they come up in the show. Watching Maple and Sally venture together is pretty entertaining to watch because their personalities really gel with one another.
While there are problems here and there, I don't really see the anime deserving of anything below a seven. It provides its viewers with a great time if they're willing to sit back and watch Maple and Sally explore a VR-MMO world with a couple of hiccups along the way. I see a lot of potential for BOFURI and hope the show will keep going strong throughout the rest of the season.