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Aoharu x Machinegun Vol. #13 Manga Review

3 min read
Lower key, but not lower excitement!

Lower key, but not lower excitement!

Creative Staff
Story/Art: Naoe
Translation: Leighann Harvey

What They Say
Star White, five-time champions of the TGC, hit the battlefield for their first match! Even though the odds heavily favor the enemy, Midori shows off his unbelievable skills to turn the tables! Meanwhile, as Toy*Gun Gun’s second match approaches, Midori’s and Mattsun’s reliance on their old guns eats at Yukimura, who fears the two might go back to being a team like they once were. And his fears, unfounded or otherwise, spell disaster for Toy*Gun Gun…

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
We kick off this volume with the match between Star White and Nine Tails! And well, though the end result should be totally obvious, the setup is actually kind of interesting, with a unique stage for the battle that seriously favors the underdogs. As a result, we get a much more enjoyable match than you may expect, with it certainly not being the sort of massacre this could have easily been. Heck, we even get some nice backstory on Nine Tails mixed in too, which is definitely a plus! Though with that said, the way that Midori’s overwhelming might is shown off goes a bit TOO far for me personally, and I really would have honestly preferred something that felt a little more grounded.

Next up, Toy Gun Gun gets their second match, a plastic jug battle! And though the name may make you go “wait, what?” at first, the concept actually works out well and legitimately makes for a unique feeling match. And heck, similar to the last match, this time around our heroes are put in an immediate pinch despite being the obvious favorites here, with Matsuoka getting injured right off the bat! Plus, the other team gets some nice backstory once again… Though in their case, it does feel just a touch odd compared to the way they were treated as such blatant heels in their first appearance. But anyway, outside of that slight oddity in the feel of the overall continuity, it really is a nice little match.

Anyway, when things come down to the wire, just who will win?! And is there perhaps something more important than mere victory on the line this time around?

In Summary
While this volume may not have the absolute highest highs of the series thus far, it really is a truly solid work which left me with only a few tiny quibbles. It takes what could have easily been a bit of a bore in the form of matches with some minor teams, and instead uses them to great effect. The setup in both battles here is handled just right to keep things interesting, and there’s even some nice, solid backstory mixed into both of them to boot. And in a way, that’s perhaps one of the greatest sign of the strength of the series that you could hope for: Even though it’s a “low-key” volume without any real “big” events, it’s still a great read from beginning to end.

Content Grade: A-
Art Grade: B+
Packaging Grade: B+
Text/Translation Grade: B+

Age Rating: Older Teen
Released By: Yen Press
Release Date: October 30th, 2018
MSRP: $12.99

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