Cross Game, Chihayafuru Recommendations
Both are sports anime with more romance in Cross game. There is a character development and the main characters are childhood friends.
In some ways, I find these two series a bit similar.
Both series involves the main characters following their dreams in a sports-related event. They also have a past with childhood friends involved.
Both series are lighthearted and presents every day life in a realistic way.
There is also comedy, drama, and some romance between the characters from the stories.
The best stories are shown, not told. Both Cross game and Chihayafuru weave masterful stories of ordinary lives and mold characters who are memorable yet genuine. Though both series focus on a sport (baseball in Cross Game, competitive karuta in Chihayafuru), familiarity nor interest in either are necessary, as they are the mere groundworks for laying out the lives of charming characters who could very well exist in an excellent slice of life show without any unifying context. Both shows are about growth - Cross Game examines childhood friends growing beyond a childhood tragedy, while Chihayafuru explores childhood friends, reunited, growing toward their childhood dreams.
Both are sports shows which choose to focus large amounts of time on developing its characters, resulting in extremely strong emotional arcs through the series. The character depth in both shows are stellar - we will laugh with them, cheer for them, and cry with them. The shows start out very similarly, choosing to use the first few episodes to show us what our characters experienced as young kids, serving as an extended prologue, allowing us to see what drives them, and what has made each character what they are in the present time. Overall, both shows are a masterpiece when it comes to writing
Both series have similar protagonists who start from scratch and become passionate about doing what they love. They take part in competitions and face big challenges as they improve and attempt to become champions.