New Game!! is quickly turning into a must-watch show
There are few shows that accurately capture the nature of an office more than New Game!!. However, if a series shows the good times, it should also show the uncomfortable ones too. As such, this week’s episode deals with what happens when your personal and professional lives collide.
Shinoda is caught hiding in a bathroom stall while attempting to secure tickets to a concert. Nevertheless, she’s able to attend since Yun has a spare. The scene in which Shinoda attends the concert was well done and showcases a different side of a character known for being a little ditzy. It seems as though she just needs to be passionate about something to do her best, something which the rest of the game design team would do well to take into account.
Arguably, Hifumi is the star of this episode. She’s still working on reducing her social anxiety and seemed ready to let loose at the concert. When she enters the auditorium, she realizes that she’s sitting next Aoba and Nene, and rather than acting reserved, she opens up a little. Later, Shizuku approaches her again about becoming the leader of the character team.
This role would require her to communicate with the other staff members on a daily basis, and she’s worried about this. However, with some reassurance and the guarantee that she can always hand the responsibility back to Kō if she doesn’t like it, Hifumi accepts. It’s interesting to see the small changes in the way Hifumi reacts to the people around her: when she talks to Kō privately, she feels drained, and yet she has no problems talking professionally in a meeting.
Meanwhile, Aoba played a comparatively small role in this episode. Her minimal appearances could signal that she’s now considered a part of the team and is no longer the show’s primary focus. This does make logical sense, since who gets the most attention in a workplace? The new employee, until they can do their job by themselves, She did have a brief scene wherein she worries that the game’s publisher will reject the project she’s working on, meaning she’s been working hard for nothing. It seems Hifumi isn’t the only one at Eagle Jump Studios with self-confidence problems.
This episode managed to strike a good balance between plot progression and character development. With Hifumi now in a position of influence, it will be interesting to see how she impacts the project cycle. In the previous episode, Aoba showed her level of inexperience, so it’s possible Hifumi will have to learn to argue constructively – a useful skill, but something that’s going to take a lot of work. We can expect a stronger focus on this aspect of her character in the episodes to come now that the game has been approved. Simply put, New Game!! is quickly turning into a must-watch show this season.