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Tohyo Game Vol. #03 Manga Review

4 min read

Tohyo Game Volume 3 CoverCreative Staff
Story/Art:
Story: G.O.
Art: Tatsuhiko
Translation/Adaptation: Leighann Harvey
Adaptation: CHIHIRO

What They Say:
No one can stop the deadly voting game! Emotions run raw as each member of the dwindling Class 2-A challenge their humanity with each vote they make. Before they know it, the final round is upon them, and the end is in sight for those hanging on by a thread.

But will the votekeeper really just let the game end…? Don’t miss the final volume of the intense Tohyo Game!!!

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
The bitter, bloody end is finally here. Whittled down to only a handful of students, G.O.’s depraved romp through a class of unsuspecting high school students has reached its end…and it tries too hard. The grab bag of plot twists and increasing violence and depravity demanded from the voters leaves the reader rather numb to the shock meant by it all. In many instances it feels as G.O. didn’t know where to go with the story and rather than write a decent ending he/she just went with the Howard Stern radio route. This is a shame for up to this point it felt like the loose ends were finally starting to come together between the remaining students and the two (?!) police investigators who give a damn about this rash of deaths. Where there was any potential left, only predictable and generic twists filled the spaces where simple brutal violence couldn’t sign the check.

This is most prominent in the case of the final trio, Wakaba Ootsuki, Marina Yamamura, and Shuusuke Takayama. In what is the easiest twist of the whole manga, Ootsuki is revealed to be the votekeeper of the whole game. For any reader paying even half attention this should come as no surprise, Ootsuki (unlike designated rube Shuusuke) weaves her way through the sex and violence relatively unscathed, conducting herself as just an innocent girl who wants to get along with everyone. Shuusuke, as mentioned earlier, takes an overwhelming amount of punishment as her proverbial whipping boy, a highlight of what qualities Tohyo Game still brings to the table. It’s the depictions of violence, not their shoddy reasoning, that holds steady as the manga’s strong point. Gore hounds will find that Tatsuhiko does a solid job depicting how strung out, tired, and desperate all the students are at this point; even making some of their deaths a breath of relief rather than a cause of anxiety.

Unfortunately, the solid art and gratuitous violence aren’t enough to cover up some of the poor writing on display here; mainly pertaining to the detectives introduced late 2nd to 3rd volume. How is it that only two officers are dispatched to a case where in any other life it’d be potentially international level news? Normally, investigators don’t wait around until everyone is dead to start questioning suspects and protecting potential victims. Chalking it up to “the Earth must just want to kill people” is also dripping with laziness and speaks volumes of the investigators’ incompetence/lack of giving two damns about the case at hand. Hell, if the ending is to be believed they didn’t even attempt to approach Marina, the lone survivor, until after her (potentially inbred) baby was born NINE MONTHS LATER. What were they doing during this time? Twiddling their thumbs? And what of the parents, how have they not gotten involved in any way whatsoever? Their children are being slaughtered and not a single peep can be heard from them. How is any of this happening? It makes sense in a similar property such as the ever-popular Battle Royale as making kids kill each other was wholly supported by the government and school system, but this is a completely private affair. The suspension of disbelief was stretched past its breaking point in volume three, which is a shame.

In Summary
A tense but juvenile attempt at shock and horror, the weak writing and underdeveloped climax easily betray the gruesome art of Tohyo Game, leading to an overall disappointing affair. The bevy of plot holes and unanswered questions leave the ending traveling at breakneck speed despite the car rapidly losing parts with every passing second.

Content Grade: D
Art Grade: B
Packaging Grade: C+
Text/Translation Grade: C

Age Rating: 17+
Released By: Yen Press
Release Date: April 18th, 2017
MSRP: $14.99

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