Remember before you faced off with the ultimate final boss of a game, you would stock up as much healing potions as you can? Or at least level up like mad before the final fight? And then when you fought the big bad boss, you realize that it wasn’t so bad in the first place and all that potion stocking and levelling up felt like a big waste of time? Yeah. But you can’t always be too sure, right? Because like they say, the best offence is a best defence. Itai No Wa Iya Nano De Bougyoryoku Ni Kyokufuri Shitai To Omoimasu (or Bofuri if that name is too freaking long for you to pronounce and remember) is like the ultimate defence version of Shinchou Yuusha. The main character hates pain so she puts all her points into defence, making her character the most impenetrable and rock solid defence ever. Don’t laugh. Better be safe than sorry.

Episode 1
Kaede Honjou has been pestered by her friend, Risa Shiromine to play this VRMMO game, New World Online (NWO). After putting on this discount NerveGear, she enters NWO and is tasked to enter a name. After inputting Maple, she needs to select a weapon. Not wanting to feel pain, she decides this shield is the best. As for distribution of her stats, she puts it all to defence. Don’t want to feel pain now, do we? Diving into the game, she asks a girl (Frederica) where to level up. In the forest, a cue bunny attacks her. But she feels no pain and gets no damage. After an hour, she seems to have built resistance and hence levelled up. So the next time to bunny continues to attack, it dies!!! WTF?! She levels up and earns more points in which she puts it all to defence. Next, a cute bee attacks. Though, she is not immune from its poison, she notices she can build immunity this way. So she purposely gets poisoned to build up resistance?! WTF?! Then using a simple attack to kill it. More level up, more stats and a special rare item ring. Wow. This game is too easy. Then she just sleeps there in the middle of the road while all the critters attack her. Once done, WTF she has built more resistance and skills???!!! SOMETHING WRONG WITH THIS GAME?! Enough for today. Log out. Oh, it’s after midnight! Homework not done! Next day she logs in. Needing for better gear, she talks to this guy, Kuromu who seems to be the same shield wielder with her. He brings her to Iz who is a blacksmith. But since she has not enough money (a million gold is needed!), she is told the dragon’s labyrinth could earn her some treasures. First monsters are cute slimes. Her knife attacks don’t work, so how? She slams them with her shield! OMG! This does more damage?! Of course, new skills and level up achieved. Then she faces off with this poisonous hydra. She is not totally immune from its poison as her HP is decreasing. But each time, she drinks her health potion. So rinse and repeat this cycle. Guess what? She builds immunity to poison!!! WTF???!!! I swear this game is something wrong… But she can’t attack so how? She bites and eats the hydra until it dies!!! OMFG!!! I DON’T BELIEVE THIS!!! And yes, you know the drill. More levelling up in stats (you know where she’ll put it all), receives a really rare armour in which if it is broken, the next one gets stronger. I rest my case… No wonder she so happy and hooked in this game. So technically if I go by this game’s logic, if I die many times, will I build resistance to death and become an immortal???!!!

Episode 2
Wow. Maple is eating more bugs and levelling up… She then participates in NWO’s very first event. It’s not specifically stated what it is but from what I can see it’s like a battle royale. Hence, I’m thinking why is Maple participating in this if she has no intention to fight others? I mean, she’s just idling around and drawing nice pictures. When a guy comes to challenge her, he dies just after hitting her shield!!! OMFG! Soon everybody starts to gang up on her but you know, she’s so untouchable at this point. She’s even got some paralyzing skill to paralyze them all and take them all out in one fell swoop with her poison breath. Amazing. All without even really hitting others! In the end, Maple got third place (first is Payne while Dread in second). It’s no wonder everyone is in shock. Is her shield actually legal or broken? Next time, Risa now manages to log in to play with Kaede. She goes by the name Sally and she doesn’t think of increasing her defence points. Because if she doesn’t get hit, it doesn’t matter, right? Also, there are some weapons that will automatically increase her hit points so she won’t increase that either. Because she wants to be a fast swashbuckler, she puts her stats in agility. As Maple wants to change the colour of her shield, Iz told her that in some underground lake of the southern city has white fish scales. Riding on Sally’s back, they make haste there. They do some fishing but with Maple’s low agility, she cannot swim. Hence Sally does the exploration around the lake. You know you’re near the treasure when some monster fish boss is around. Sally gets into serious mode to fight it until she beats it. And the treasure she got? Hmm… Some cool looking cape? Then the announcement of another event. Because it is in another world, its criteria is for them to clear exclusive dungeons.

Episode 3
Looks like the developers have applied some fixes and updates to the game. This means Maple can now receive some damage and she will have limited times to use he godly moves. Yeah, it’ll be a pain if everyone ends up like her character. But as consolation, all the damage effects coming out will make her feel more invincible. With Maple now a household name, she is met with Dread and Drag. They talk about the next event and next world but since the girls want to explore this world further, they recommend a quest in the north forest to increase speed. But it might be tough for Sally since this is a haunted forest and she is afraid of ghosts! Can she complete this quest? Apparently luck is on their side because they discover a secret underground room. Some tortured guy sitting there. Sally applies her healing until he moves on to the next world. And voila! Here’s the scroll for the super fast skill. Then they enter some pathway that leads them to some nice beach. Picked up some nice red stone that they’ll keep as souvenir. At the entrance to the next world, Maple uses up some of her limited moves already. Sally help tests out some of her skills to fight the monsters. Then they face off with this deer monster boss and of course defeat it. They are now in the new world. Iz is already here and has opened her shop. Just in time for Maple to handover the ingredients and create her new white shield that she names Snow White. Before the next event, Maple and Sally have this romantic dinner under the starry sky. Eating weird tasty food and drink that has their eyes and hair glow in different colours. Sure this game isn’t laced with drugs too? The next event is here. There is some girl, Mii rallying her Flame Emperor group to bring victory. Before the event starts, it is announced it will be a treasure hunt and they are to find silver medals in which collecting 10 of them can be exchanged for a gold medal. As stealing from others is also okay, the top 10 players from the last event will receive a gold medal each at the start. So stay on guard always.

Episode 4
Walking through the endless plains, suddenly Maple falls into a secret cave. A hidden dungeon? Of course a joker monster attacks them. Nothing like a few combo moves to take it out and receive a couple of silver medals. Next day, as they are about to try this snowy dungeon, Kuromu and his team are here. They don’t want to fight or steal medals but it seems others don’t have the same idea. Since they are hard on their luck in finding medals and this dungeon can only allow a single party, kind Maple decides to let them take this one. After they enter and Maple and Sally about to leave, the entrance opens again. They fear they might have been taken out by a powerful monster. What to do but to check it out? Indeed. There is this very powerful ice phoenix. To add to some drama, we see them fight real hard and even Maple is being flung around. Wow. Their attacks did no damage? And then Maple’s shield breaks. Gasp! Oh, but it resurrects. Hope this one is stronger. Finally some mirage move from Sally to trick the bird and then Maple finishing it off with her poisonous hydra. Phew. They’ve earned this victory. They would’ve been goner had not Maple acquired a new skill that saved their asses. After collecting some goodies, they also collect cute monster eggs that will hatch if warmed up enough. Meanwhile, the developers are starting to panic. That bird boss is packed with all the lethal skills impossible for any players to beat. Basically, an evil prank. And it’s that damn Maple who defeated it! Worse, they got off with monster eggs! Oh dear. Time to work harder to fix more bugs… Maple and Sally continue their adventure. Get more medals. Then their eggs hatch. Wow! Cute turtle and fox! Maple names her turtle, Syrup. She really wants to make a pun with Maple Syrup, huh? Sally names her fox, Oboro. Weird, Syrup has faster agility than Maple… So with monster pets at their side, they can help aid in their fights. The duo arrive at the oasis. Waiting there is a samurai girl, Kasumi. She wants Maple’s gold medal.

Episode 5
Sally and Kasumi engage in some super fast fight. But when Maple comes crashing into them, they all fall into some sandpit. Inside this dark underground dungeon, the trio are chained together. It seems if one dies, everyone dies. Convenient plot for them to work together and get out of here, right? They explore the dungeon and then cooperate to escape from unkillable giant slugs. Finally they enter the treasure room. They share the loot of weapons and medals. After getting out, they part ways. Maple and Sally continue their adventure and obtain more medals. They also meet another player, Kanade who isn’t so interested in collecting medals as she is satisfied with this Akashic Records puzzle cube that she got. As a token of their friendship, Kanade gives them a hint book for the event. Of course it is filled with riddles and it is no fun if she tells them the answer. Go discover it yourself. So here they are in some ruins. It teleports them to some underwater ruins whereby they have to fight off (and successfully defeat) a squid monster. And yeah, more medals! Meanwhile, the game developers are tired of hearing of Maple’s achievements. Yeah, they don’t want to face reality anymore! She has gotten more powerful, defeat enemy bosses easily, so much so she has become more of a last boss than the real last boss! With the duo short of 2 medals, Sally decides to go hunt other players as time is running out. She doesn’t want Maple to come as many would recognize her. And so Sally becomes a demon and massacres other players. Wow. She mowed down the whole bunch and that bunch just got 2 medals? I guess they’re all amateurs. But it’s enough. Returning to the cave where Maple is hiding, it seems Kasumi is also here. She too is trying to hide from other players who are now desperate to hunt others with medals now that time is running out. So the trio hide in the cave until the event is over. With the medals exchanged for gold, a gold medal allows a player to choose a skill. And so Maple has Syrup get some mega morphing skill while she herself picks psychokinesis. Now she can shower acid rain while riding on a giant floating turtle! HAHAHA!!! SHE’S SO UNSTOPPABLE!!!

Episode 6
Kaede has been playing the game so much that she is letting her bad habits creep into her school life. Reality doesn’t work like the game. How embarrassing. Time to lay off NWO for a while. And after 3 days, she’s back! Damn. That was fast. And while she was gone, NWO has added a few new features. Damn. That was fast. One of them including purchasing a home. Time to go house hunting. Eventually they settle for this cosy tree house base. Because it looks too big for just the 2 of them, they decide to invite others and at the same time form a guild. Hence you’ve guessed the usual suspects that include Kasumi and Kanade. Since Kuromu and Iz were passing by, they too get invited. Damn. That was fast, the recruiting. They all agree to have Maple as the guild master and in turn she names the guild, Maple Tree. Hey, it’s her guild, right? Of course they got to show us how superb this group is as we see them slash some monsters as training. Maple Tree then conducts its first guild meeting. Talking about the upcoming events and new world, because there are going to be lots of monsters and drop items, there will be competitions among the guilds. Kuromu suggests to invite more people to join their guild to bolster their chances. Maple and Sally go to the bulletin for recruitment. Since many want high level players, Maple is okay in taking in beginners so long as they all have fun. Wow. She really is taking this game thingy as a game seriously, huh? Going back down to the first world, they quickly stumble into a pair of sisters, May and Yui. Maple invites them but they don’t think so and consider themselves as weak. It seems they maxed out their offensive skills but other skills are basically zero. So after talking and ironing things out, I guess they agree to join. So as to have them join them in the next world, they fight that deer monster boss. Uhm, only Maple and Sally do all the action and the sisters just watch? Is this another broken feature of NWO? May and Yui are introduced to the rest of the members. They bow their heads so hard that the table cracked! Sally ‘worries’ if they would end up just like Maple. Oh I bet they will…

Episode 7
Maple now takes May and Yui to do some time trial run. Yup, it’s more challenging to take on monsters in an allocated time. Plus, the faster they do it, the faster they level up. And man, they’re breaking their own time record each time. At this rate, they’ll be faster than Sonic! As expected, the sisters have done well enough to get some devastating offensive abilities of their own. The next scenes show the other members of Maple Tree levelling up like mad. This game is too easy. While Maple is out in town, she stumbles upon an NPC quest. Mother needs to do something for her ailing daughter. What else? You guessed it. Maple is going to take on this side quest. But it seems there is a chain of quests here. Until Maple realizes that it might be some loop. She goes to do some fetch item quest, daughter gets better, but something bad happens that would reset her health back to initially. I don’t know if the developers want other players to take on such quest. I suppose Maple has taken on this quest a few times so there is an extra option which might lead to a different path. Indeed. In addition to saving the child’s life, Maple also gets, wait for it, another ability! And so what’s this ability all about? Well, not only she transforms into an angel, but as long as her comrades are standing within her range, enemies cannot harm them at all! Basically they’re immortal!!! F*ck! Why does this scene of the enemies perpetually trying to beat down Maple Tree but to no effect feels like that Spongebob episode… This overpowering has gone way too far. Meanwhile Payne is quite concerned with the rise of Maple Tree. Along with his other Order of the Holy Sword guild members, Dread, Drag and Frederica, they are going to scout out the enemy for more information.

Episode 8
So we have an event that kills cows to get bells and the more bells you get, the better the reward? Whatever. Iz has made fitting outfits for her comrades for this event. So as Maple Tree get into the groove of murdering bovines, Maple wanders off herself and stumbles into an abandoned church she once visited before. Then she triggers some demonic dark night who attacks her. Before you could say that she’s going to overpower her way out of this again, they make us worry a bit since she is struggling to contain this violent mother*cker. Her defence not working? Heck, she even gets eaten! But of course, she eats her way out! I didn’t know it was this easy to kill a demon. And as expected, she gets a new ability. So besides being an angel, she is now a demon?! Is she even human anymore?! And yeah, the developers aren’t even bothered with Maple anymore. They think she can’t defy anymore logic. THEY HOPE! Why do I feel they’re going to regret everything soon? Maple shows off her new skills. Uhm, she transforms into an armoured alien Godzilla and easily kills off this oversized broccoli monster! Everyone is so in shock and baffled. Just another usual day of Maple getting buffed up. And Maple so happy she can protect everyone better now. She’s basically more perfect than perfect! Maple Tree then heads to the next level which is some machine world. Exploring about, as you can tell, Maple saves an NPC who then triggers a quest for her. This old fart tells some old story about some feud between the first and second generation, blah, blah, blah. Maple makes her way and finds herself in some machine graveyard. Scrapyard? Before her is the supposedly previous king of machines. Because he attacks her and wants to turn everything into junk, cue for Maple to fight back. Another easy win. The machine than gives him her powers so as to defeat somebody. The machine then turns into an even more badass machine boss so to prevent her ass being blown to bits, Maple uses the new power to turn herself into a mecha! Woah! WTF?! Since when did this become a power mecha battle anime???!!! As expected, Maple wins since her blast is more powerful and flashier. Heh. Who’s the scrap now?

Episode 9
Maple shows her team her awesome mecha firepower. At this point, they’re not surprised but still can’t help feel dumbfounded at her latest arsenal entry. While some train, others relax. Sally calls Frederica out as she knows she has been spying on them for a while. She can tell she is scouting other guilds to gauge their capacity. Sally challenges Frederica to a duel in which the loser will reveal info about their own guild. Frederica agrees but will only tell info on the Flame Emperor. So the duo teleport to another arena and duke it out. After putting Sally on the edge and having her reveal some of her secret skills, Frederica surprisingly surrenders. She talks about some of the powerful members in Flame Emperor to be wary off like Markus the trapper, Misery the cleric and Shin the split sword. After Frederica leaves, we see her monologue this was all part of her plan. It was to see Sally’s secret skills. Had Frederica fought longer, she would’ve given away herself too. Also, telling about Flame Emperor is so that Maple Tree could fight and both sides will crush each other. Sally reveals to her comrades about her fake skill. Yeah, she isn’t that stupid either since it was her part to deceive the enemy too. Maple Tree receives news about the upcoming guild war. Basically it is some capture the flag version. Not only you defend your own orb in your own base but you can steal enemy’s orbs to earn more points. Maple Tree divide their roles with Maple, Yui and May at the defence, Sally, Kuromu and Kasumi as the offensive power while Iz stays back at the base. Kanade is the joker card and can be anywhere she wants. After more training, the guild war begins. The event begins and we of course see other dumb guilds becoming Sally’s victims. So dumb that she eggs them to fight and blame each other for stealing their orbs while she secretly steal theirs. Are they even cut out for this game?! Then there’s that short bout between Sally and Dread that didn’t amount to anything much. We see Flame Emperor owning the game. But what’s this? Sally manages to steal one of their orbs?! When she gets away, we see Mii’s true colours. She’s actually a meek player pretending to be strong. She can’t take it anymore and wants to quit being a leader while crying alone! Enemies have discovered Maple Tree’s hideout. No problem, right? Yup. Double grievance for them as they all got owned by Maple the angel. Flawless victory.

Episode 10
Payne is slaying his opponents like nobody’s business. Despite singlehandedly getting like about 20 orbs, this guy is still sceptical about wanting to steal and fight Maple Tree. Good instincts. I can see why this guy is the top. Meanwhile Maple Tree has got like 10 orbs. But they’re still like in 17th place overall. No rest for Sally as she continues to hunt down smaller guilds and take their orbs. The logic is that smaller guilds tend to be wiped out faster so if bigger guilds get them first, it will be hard for Maple Tree to take on those larger guilds. Yeah. Great strategy. So we see the rest of Maple Tree heading out to do the same or put a stop to ambushing guilds trying to steal their orb (it is only right they attract attention since the orbs are gathered at their base). While we see Kasumi taking Shin who was an old comrade (of course in which she would eventually defeat), Sally meets her match when she is outnumbered by skilled players of Holy Sword. Frederica thought she knew all the tricks in Sally’s ability. Until it didn’t work and Sally continues to stand her ground, did Frederica realize that those aren’t Sally’s abilities but her own reflex!!! Hey wait a minute. Can you do that in an online game???!!! Anyway, before Sally gets taken down, here comes Maple just in time. Because Sally messaged her she might die. Nothing like that taboo word to send a friend come flying in. Now the tables are turned. Holy Sword is owned left and right!!! Those guys are f*cked!!! But this is a distraction because with May and Yui left at the base, Dread comes in to steal the orbs. They give him a run for his money before getting killed. Of course Maple and Sally return just in time to kill him before any orbs are stolen. When Maple Tree reunites, they’ve taken their orb tally up to 22. Sally moves on to their next plan. You see, the reason she has been ambushing guilds hard is so that she could map out their base. Now that she’s got the entire map of everybody’s whereabouts, Maple can now go on a robbing spree. So to speak. And hence, it’s like Maple with May and Yui go on a field trip picking souvenirs on a flying turtle. Ah, such easy pickings. Eventually the next target is Flame Emperor. Yeah, Maple isn’t afraid of anybody. You know you’re screwed when all the traps that Markus set, SHE JUST WALKED THROUGH THEM LIKE NOTHING!!! LIKE A BOSS!!! WTF IS SHE ON CHEAT CODE MODE???????!!!!!!!! Before Markus is marked and more misery for Misery, here comes Mii to face off with those cheaters easy goers. Somebody needs to stop them dead in their tracks and make them think twice that they could REALLY DO ANYTHING so easily.

Episode 11
The epic boss fight begins. However with Maple being the strongest defence and Mii being the strongest offence, the fight isn’t going anywhere. Hence Mii wants Misery and Markus to buy her time while she activates her ultimate skill. So eventually Mii unleashes some flaming prison to engulf Maple. It’s looking bad for her since it is depleting Maple’s life bar the more she stays trap. If you think Maple will find a way out of this, you guessed right. Because she transforms into her mecha mode!!! Holy sh*t! Flame Emperor is totally f*cked now. No time to be flabbergasted by her new form. DO SOMETHING!!! Unfortunately, Maple’s awesome firepower means there is nothing they can do! See the crater she leaves in the beam’s wake???!!! Hasta la vista baby!!! Misery suggests escaping and Mii accepts this. However Maple won’t let them go and fully blasts them!!! Wow. Maple is so greedy. Mii is the only one left from the blast so she isn’t going down easily. Thus she tries to take Maple out with her own self-destruct. Boom! Guess what? Mii’s dead but Maple somehow survives!!! WTF???!!! But ‘good news’. Flame Emperor took their orb away so Maple Tree can’t steal them. You mad, Maple? Yui and May suggest raiding other nearby guild bases. Okay. Greedy girls… Meanwhile Mii is crying like a baby, knowing she has been soundly beaten by Maple. To add salt to her wounds, she hear reports that Maple escaped unscathed after the self-destruct. Time to cry harder… Maple Tree has been gathering lots of orbs enough to break into the top 10 but still nowhere near Holy Sword who is sitting comfortably at the top spot. Hence Sally predicts they will come to attack them soon. This turns out true but she only miscalculated one thing: She didn’t expect the top players of Holy Sword to come instead of the whole army. Because with such a big guild, they will move slower and their movements will be noticeable. Holy Sword top players are now at Maple Tree’s base and it is showdown time. Both sides clash heavily and with Maple having used up a lot of her limited skills already, she has to revert to her usual. No angel mode this time. This allows Payne to move in and slash her! OMG! Maple done in for good???!!! I wouldn’t count on it…

Episode 12
Yeah… Maple still lives. Maple Tree gets a taste of what it feels like when they’re cornered when Iz, Kanade and Oboro gets killed! OMG! The beginning of the end?! Maple then fires her awesome big gun and Payne survives. You mean to look this shocked that he did? He is NWO’s top player! I guess fun time is over. So before Payne kills Maple, Maple throws away her shield and turns into her Godzilla mode! So she is invincible now in this mode?! Because she devours Payne! OMG! Payne is killed! And slowly Godzilla Maple smashes the rest of Holy Sword! Wow. F*ck, man. That’s how they won. But strategy time. At this point, Maple Tree has ranked up to 6th place and because the top 10 guilds all get the same reward, there is no point in stealing orbs. Hence the strategy now is to eliminate other smaller guilds and their orbs. Yup, with Maple in Godzilla form, you bet the other smaller guilds are f*cked big time. Why do they look like villains now? Flame Emperors are also having this same idea as the smaller guilds are teaming up to fight them. Mii already has her hands full when she receives report that Maple Tree is coming. Okay. Bring it on! And then she sees Godzilla Maple. WTFFFFFFFF???!!! However Maple doesn’t kill her but helps out in destroying the smaller guilds. As part of the strategy, Flame Emperor’s large guild size can help them in trimming those puny guilds. So it’s the same for Holy Sword too. You thought you’ve seen everything. Until Maple clones her Godzilla mode 7 times!!! OH F*CK!!!! EVERYONE IS SO SCREWED!!! Can the game just end already? So the admins are glad the event is over and only 6 guilds are left. Their goal is to put a highlight video together but most of them are from Maple Tree… As for the question of wanting to downgrade Maple’s abilities, they think it is not the best interest of the game to do so. Because Maple has become the poster girl of NWO and attracting new players to play and fight her! Woah… Everybody such a masochist… The admins are so broken that they are now Maple fans? Yeah, they take a peek on what she’s doing right now… Soon, Maple Tree celebrate their 3rd place finishing. They also invited Holy Sword and Flame Emperor to join the fun. I guess if they’re not competing, there’s no point being enemies, right? Everybody thought they have seen all that Maple has to offer but Sally cautions them she might pick up weirder skills. And when Maple she is just playing normally, everyone scoffs at her. Having fun, aren’t we? See you next season then. Wait. WHAT?!

Bore-freak: The Rising Overpowered Shield Heroine
Wow. They should just give up in balancing the game and rename NWO into Maple Tree World Order. MTWO. A tribute literally in her name. The game is literally all about them now. They’re so unbeatable. Not even bosses from other games can beat her and her small team even if they joined forces. Not even Kirito who broke into Underworld and defeated Administrator/Pontifex by himself. You think you’ve seen everything there is for such a game to offer but you haven’t seen anything yet if you have not encountered Maple. And best of all, she is just playing everything normally without any effort. Genius or extremely lucky? Let’s hope her offline life is keeping up with her online triumphs. She’d better. Before the next season comes about. OMFG!!! Really?! This is getting another season?! For real?!

With the ire and hatred over badly adapted isekai animes spamming the airwaves recently, I have this suspicion that this season they turn it into some virtual MMORPG. Yes, in the same season, we also had Infinite Dendrogram of the virtual MMORPG genre. So this series isn’t actually an isekai category and therefore you can’t technically hate it because it is not an isekai genre! Get it! Too bad being a virtual MMORPG genre, it still is nowhere near the godly tier of Sword Art Online. It is sad to say that whether or not it is isekai or virtual MMORPG, as long as your story is sh*t and the characters are also sh*t, eventually the anime will still turn out sh*t. Period. This is the unfortunate thing that I feel for this series.

One of the craziest things that this series focuses on is levelling up and maxing out Maple’s defence points. Now, this is where my dilemma comes in. Because you see, had this been an isekai genre, Maple levelling up and maxing out her defence would be more plausible, though not necessarily likeable. Because you know, it’s the other alternate fantasy world, there are things that work beyond the comprehension of humans from this world. But now considering that NWO is actually a virtual game created by game developers, this is where it doesn’t make freaking sense. To say the game is broken at its initial stages feels like an understatement. Because it feels like there was a need to turn Maple into one of the most solid defence characters in the game as fast as they can, hence all the mind boggling stuffs that she ‘coincidentally’ and ‘accidentally’ did to just level up her defence points. I am very sure that this is not how things work whether it is in reality or in a game. I mean, come on. Get bitten by poisonous creatures so much and instead of dying, you become immune to poison????!!!! WTF IS THIS LOGIC???!!! YOU CAN’T LITERALLY MAKE UP THIS SH*T!!! While this might be true down the line of millions of years and hundreds or thousands of generations of evolution, it is definitely not so for such a game. Definitely a game breaking bug, if I should say.

Making it all worse are the game developers themselves who turned a blind eye as Maple makes her ascension to becoming God. Sure, they did implement some limits at first. But each time Maple manages to somehow find a loophole and further power up herself. To a point the developers don’t even care and try to find excuses not to even talk about her! I mean, WTF???!!! Did they just give up?! Did Maple drive them crazy to not care anymore?! Maple isn’t really a bad player and it is not her fault that she isn’t breaking any rules. But at this rate she’ll really break the game and will it be fun for others? That’s why I think the developers cannot entirely ban her or even downgrade her character. Because it’s their own fault to begin with to have such faulty features in the first place! And sure, they made it that there won’t be future Maples in the making but one is already bad enough and it is going to get worse if they don’t do something about it. It’s amazing that all those who got their ass handed to them didn’t really complain or feel enraged over her overpowered character. Unless they’re all NPCs… And now that she is the unwitting face of NWO, drawing new players to the game, wow, this world sure doesn’t have toxic gamers to begin with. No wonder they got another season…

Like as though it wasn’t enough that Maple easily gaining abilities in the freakiest of ways possible, they add more salt to the injury to insult our intelligence when they also make Maple have one of the strongest offensive weapons. Like, having the best shield wasn’t suffice. Having the title of the strongest defence wasn’t good enough. So they had to make her have some attacking options too so as to spice things up and shock everybody. Yeah, either you’re a good offence of defence. Not both. Unless you’re Maple. F*ck you, lazy developers!!! Yeah, I just remembered I did mention something about having the best offence means also having a best defence. Right… Now Maple doesn’t have to just defend her comrades, she can also attack and win battles herself. Damn, I want to join her guild! If that isn’t all, the cherry on top the icing is how they gave Maple her own mecha mode. And then the invincible Godzilla mode x 7. That does it. That is the straw that broke the camel’s back. I was like, whatever. Maple is God now. She cannot lose. Seeing her struggle is just part of the drama to make it look like there is still a fighting chance for the opponent when there is actually none. So I’m rooting for Maple because she has become so untouchable. So if she loses, I’m going to lose my sh*t as well.

And now that she has gotten like almost everything, it is ironic that she doesn’t play the defensive role anymore. It’s like she’s now getting cocky and going all out as a very offensive and attacking player. If this was part of the Shinchou Yuusha universe, Seiya would have turned in his grave! I guess Maple being the main character and leader of her small guild, they need to make her do something and not just be the role of defending. That’s why she has to be ‘upgraded’ and taking on such frontal assaulting tasks. Heh. The other irony is that with her defence being so impregnable, it allows her to switch from being defensive to offensive just like that. Well, good for her. Not so for other players, though. So basically Maple has become Jack of all trades, master of all! That is why in the last episode when she seemingly threw away her shield, it is like as though to tell us that the shield was actually a hindrance and if she was to make greater strides, she must toss it away, not rely on it and attack! When you can’t increase your defence points anymore, now it’s the time to put it all into offence points!

Having said all that, you bet that the characters are just so weak that you wouldn’t even care. With the big focus on Maple, the only reason why she is having fun is because of all the perks that she has discovered and gained while playing NWO. Yes, she claims that she is playing because it is fun. Not because for power or fame or supremacy or whatever. Because it’s fun. But of course. How is it NOT FUN when the bugs in the game literally made you a God???!!! I would be having a whale of a time if I was in her shoes too. If there were proper mechanisms, checks and balances in place, I don’t think Maple would have really find this game as much fun as she did. Maybe half of it. There would be some struggles but not as much fun like right now as she bulldozes her way through everything. EVERYTHING! She might get in a pinch once in a while but you bet she’ll find some way to get weirder and buff up more powerful to overturn the tables and also overkill. Yeah. So, f*ck you again, lazy developers!!!

The other characters in Maple Tree are like, I don’t know, they feel irrelevant. Just to show that Maple isn’t a solo player, hence she forms a guild with reasonably skilled players so as to make her look like she’s a team player. Hardly feels so when she steamrolls her way through any sort of competition. And when she finds herself in a bind, you can bet your virtual ass that she’ll somehow find a way to get out of her predicament. So easy. That’s why for the rest of the Maple Tree characters, they’re pretty meh and not really relevant. Just a few players to add some variety to the small guild, that’s all. You don’t know much about their background or even real life persona to even care about them. At least Naofumi from Tate No Yuusha No Nariagari had comrades to help him in the attack area. But not for Maple. She’s all in one. So really, why does she really need friends in her party? All just fun and games, huh? Heck, from time to time we see short clips of Kaede back in reality just to remind us that all we’ve seen is just the game. She still has her real life to live… From the way I see her at this rate, she might turn into a game addict. She’s so happy because she’s having fun (and winning all the way) and it might be inaccurate to gauge how she is doing in real life. After all, we’ve already seen how it affected her reality.

Sally being Maple’s friend is a fast ninja and great strategist. Then we have samurai girl Kasumi and puzzle player Kanade in the mix. Don’t forget blacksmith Iz who can conveniently make weapon upgrades when necessary as well as Kuromu as the only guy in the guild so as not to make it look like an all-female clan and pander to stupid feminist extremism ideology whatsoever. Too bad he isn’t the main character so can’t say this is his harem. Finally there is the loli pair sisters, Yui and May who for some reason choose to wield hammers rather than some ranged weapons seeing they put all their points to max out their strength and offensive stats. I don’t think they’re the melee combat but I thought it would be better if they are weak in other stats, might as well keep their distance and go for ranged weapons like bows and arrows or something. Just saying… Oh, before I forget, every guild like this needs an animal mascot! Even better, 2 of them! Maple really having a field day naming her turtle, Syrup so she could make some team combo pun. At least she didn’t name them after Italian Renaissance artists… Big convenient because Syrup can turn big and provide some floating transport. This guild has got everything so convenient! Can I really join your guild, please?!

And the rest of the other players… I can’t believe they’re still playing this game. After seeing Maple Tree owning other small guilds, it looks like there are a hell lot of players and noobs in this game. Aren’t there other virtual MMORPGs out there? Maybe not. After getting owned by Maple Tree in the latest event, they might want to consider quitting after that small guild continues to dominate. Hey, can’t call them cheaters. Everything they do is in the criteria of the game. Blame those lazy developers! With Maple Tree growing bigger in fame and reputation, you bet there are more small fries out there who want to try their luck and bring them down. I won’t bet on it, though… Holy Sword and Flame Emperor being the best guilds ever also don’t fare any better. It’s only a matter of time before they meet their match in the name of Maple Tree. Like they say, the bigger they are, the harder they fall. They have some strong players but even so, not so after facing off with Maple. At least they gave Maple Tree a run for their money that they aren’t as dominant as they think but that eventually came to an end once Maple somehow finds a way round to it. Oh well, if everybody say it is a fair fight, then by all means it is.

It’s amazing that despite everything that Maple has levelled up, she is still nowhere near the level of Payne who is NWO’s greatest player. Maybe they need somebody as comparison, huh? If those are the top 2 guilds, I wonder how would it be like for other top guilds below them like Wizard Hideout, Rainbow Wings, Shambala and Thunder Storm to name a few. Sounds pretty ferocious. Until they fight Maple Tree, that is… One thing irks me, though. I noticed that the big guilds, how come all the followers are wearing the same uniform and have almost the same looks? So those players in real life swore their fealty to Mii or Payne and agreed that because they are low level players in a big guild, they don’t really matter and hence dress up the same. Yeah, these guys got no personality then. Don’t tell me they’re NPCs… And at the end of each episode, there is a forum that just spams their opinions about Maple and the likes in NWO. Who are these people anyway? Not that it has any bearing in the story anyway.

The action sequences are mediocre at best and like I’ve said, they’re just there to showcase how awesome and overpowered Maple has become. You’re only stunned and astonished with your mouth wide open not because of the awesome firepower that Maple has obtained, but the absurdity of how she actually obtained it. So once we’re done seeing Maple taking in all the enemy’s attack, time to see her counter back with more lethal firepower. But the one that confused me was during Sally and Frederica’s fake bout. It is believed that Sally’s skills aren’t derived from certain abilities but rather through her own reflex. Please bear in mind that this is an online digital game and not in the real world. Even if you have lightning speed reflex, you are still bound by the whatever cooling period or limitations of that skill you are using. So even if Sally did train herself to become better, so isn’t that still the same levelling up style? Not her reflex? By saying that it is her own natural reflex means that she somehow circumvented the game’s programme or something. It’s like she is living through her avatar! Does not make sense! Oi! Lazy developers, buck up!

Art and animation are rather okay. Everything in this world is so lively and colourful that sometimes you forget it is a virtual MMORPG and more of an isekai. Also, the character designs especially the ladies, they lean more towards the cute department and hence making it sometimes look like cute girls doing cute things virtual MMORPG version. I have a feeling I have seen the character designs from somewhere but at this point I’m too lazy to point out so let me know if a certain character looks like another character from another anime, okay? (Like how Syrup reminds me of a certain turtle from Love Hina). This anime is done by Silver Link so you can see some of their art style trademark in here in their other works like Masamune-kun No Revenge, Baka To Test To Shoukanjuu, Non Non Biyori. Midara Na Ao-chan Wa Benkyou Ga Dekinai and the Fate/Kaleid Liner Pisma Ilya series to name just a few.

In the voice acting department, a few recognizable seiyuus lent their talents like Saori Hayami as Kasumi, Satomi Arai as Kanade, Satomi Satou as Iz, Ayana Taketatsu as Frederica, Rina Satou as Mii, Akira Ishida as Markus, Kappei Yamaguchi as Shin and Noriaki Sugiyama as Kuromu. Unfortunately they can’t save this anime and their limited roles mean they are only limited to what they can do. The rest of the casts that I don’t recognize are Kaede Hondo as Maple (Natsuki in Val x Love), Ruriko Noguchi as Sally (Ailane in Show By Rock S2), Nanaka Suwa as Yui (Kanan in Love Live! Sunshine), Ai Kakuma as May (Julis in Gakusen Toshi Asterisk), Kensho Ono as Payne (Slaine in Aldnoah.Zero), Takumi Yamazaki as Dread (Bansai in Gintama), Nobutoshi Canna as Drag (Lancer in Fate/Stay Night) and Yuko Minaguchi as Misery (Yaone in Saiyuki series).

The opening theme is Kyuukyoku Unbalance by Junjou No Afilia. Sounds like your typical generic lively anime idol song. Sounds okay and fitting if you consider and accept the fact that Maple and her comrades are having a blast playing the game. Play The World by Rico Sasaki as the ending theme also feels like a generic anime pop that is also okay and fitting if you consider and accept the fact that Maple and her comrades are having a blast playing the game. Yeah, nothing special to me. However the one that I really like is the insert song, Good Night by Rico Sasaki. In fact this is the best thing and the only thing that I actually like and look forward to hear in this entire series. This is a very cool song with cool acoustic guitar pickings and has this tropical samba feel to it. Makes me feel like I’m relaxing on a sunshiny tropical sandy beach! Quite catchy and makes me want to get up and dance a little. Screw whatever achievements Maple Tree is doing in the montage of clips because playing this insert song during that flushes away all the disappointment. Until the song ends… Aww, can we have another go at it, please?

Overall, this series is quite a let-down and to think they can cover it all by showing us cute girls doing cute things in an overpowered way, well, they’re wrong. Being an overpowered dark horse is not a good factor to have viewers root and support the character. Even more so, other supporting characters that are just lacking and boring. This is an opposite to everything in Tate No Yuusha No Nariagari. That is why we love and support the main character of that series because of all the hardships and tribulations he went through despite the dark themes of that series. Maple had everything here so easy. Despite being lazy bugs that made her literally overpowered, it doesn’t feel that she actually earned them. But don’t hate the main character just because of the flaws in the game that made her so. Yup, don’t hate the sinner, hate the sin. Don’t hate the anime or the genre. Hate the ones who continue to make this sh*t! No matter how high your defence points are, it will never protect you from badly written animes! You’ll be likely to get hurt and disappointed, dissatisfied and disillusioned in some ways. So instead of putting all your eggs in one basket, try to spread them out more. I think that would be a safer defence tactic. Just saying… So maybe for the time being, I’ll go back to watching the dreaded isekai genre before the next season comes about… *Shrugs and roll eyes*.

%d bloggers like this: