Tomodachi Game is an anime adaptation of Mikoto Yamaguchi and Yuki Sato's manga of the same name. There are currently 19 tankōbon volumes of Tomodachi Game that have been published, so there is plenty of source material that the anime can use in this first season. Another good thing about an anime being adapted from a manga is the simple fact that fans can read the manga first just to get an idea of the story. It is one of the best ways to help decide which new anime are worth following. Based on the story from the manga thus far, Tomodachi Game has a very compelling story that might interest anime fans of all genres.
Tomodachi Game is a treacherous game where one competes against their best friends in order to erase their debts. In the story, a group of friends is kidnaped by mysterious people and forced to participate in this so-called Game of Friends.
There is somebody who has an absurd amount of debt within that group of friends, and he applied to the Tomodachi Game in order to forcefully share that debt equally with their best friends. During the game, the participants have opportunities to reduce their debt through different kinds of challenges that will test their friendship.
One is a simple game where one needs to choose to either agree with their friends and reduce a tiny amount of debt or betray their friends and halve their debt. There's also a game where those involved get the chance to reduce their debt by revealing their friends' deepest secrets. These are just some psychological games fans can expect out of the anime.
In a way, it is similar to Squid Game, but without the violence. As a matter of fact, Tomodachi Game explicitly forbids the act of violence during the course of the game. That is why there will be lots and lots of betrayal and mental pain instead.
The story of Tomodachi Game is about five high schoolers who are kidnaped due to one of them having a 200 million yen debt. Each of these five characters has a distinct personality and each brings something different to the table, which creates a very interesting dynamic between characters who are increasingly becoming distrustful of one another.
The main character. Katagiri Yuuichi, is a relatively quiet guy who spends most of his time outside of school working part-time jobs in order to make ends meet. So he is not only aware of the importance of money, but he is also quite avid at earning and using money. Outside of his money-making hustle, Yuuichi cares deeply about his friends and never has any doubt on them.
That is of course until the game officially starts and a huge amount of money is suddenly put on the line. As the game progresses, Yuuichi's real personality will slowly but surely come to the surface. Not only him, but the rest of Yuuichi's friends will also show their true selves as the facade slowly crumbles from one betrayal to the next. As the story goes on, every character will become eerily unpredictable - adding to the tension and suspension the series is known for.
Good thriller anime are getting harder and harder to come by. Most seasonal anime are either action, comedy, romance, or isekai. There might be some slight variation, but for the most part, those are the biggest genres that get the most representation.
Spring 2022 promises to be a bit different. There are at least two solid thrillers and mystery anime this season in the form of Summer Time Rendering and Tomodachi Game. What makes this particular thriller stand apart from the rest of its peers is how well the story is excecuted.
Tomodachi Game doesn't need to rely on violence to tell an engaging story, and it doesn't shy away from probing the unquestionable trust between a circle of best friends in order to unveil the truth. And yet it manages to still be ruthless and even scary at times. No characters are absolutely good or bad in the story. Everybody has their own mask that they wear in public, and the job of Tomodachi Game is to tear down that facade one episode at a time. If such a story sounds interesting to you, then you should definitely tune into the "Tomodachi Game".