Magical Girl Raising Project: Aces is the eighth light novel in Asari Endou’s Magical Girl Raising Project. It takes place directly after Jokers, and even has a few familiar faces participating in the plot.
As with all the other entries of the Magical Girl Raising Project series, this one was licensed by Yen Press for an English release.
A clash of magical-girl titans!
Snow White, a.k.a. the Magical-Girl Hunter, is searching for her dear friend Ripple when she’s summoned by one of the Three Sages, the Magical Kingdom’s highest authority. The Sage asks Snow White to locate a missing magical girl – a simple enough task that ends up throwing her into the middle of a bloody war between two opposing Sage factions. Meanwhile, Princess Deluge is on the warpath, hell-bent on avenging her fallen comrades… which puts her and Snow White’s allies in conflict!
In my review of Magical Girl Raising Project: Jokers, I mentioned that it felt like there was a certain plot building up to something running in the background. Here in Aces, it becomes more apparent, though it still seems to be in the build up phase.
Magical Girl Raising Project is undoubtedly heading towards a spectacular climax, and I look forward to seeing how all the pieces continue to fall into place after the events of this volume.
A new volume of Magical Girl Raising Project brings along with it new magical girls, and once again I am impressed with the designs of every last one. Out of the new additions to the cast, I’d have to say that Armour Arlie is my favourite. The alliteration of her name is satisfying, and she actually plays a rather amusing role in the story.
All the newcomers are really great, but ask me to pick out a few favourites and I would have to opt for Dark Cutie, CQ Angel Hamuel and the aforementioned Armour Arlie. Also worth mentioning is Bluebell Candy, who is very attached to Princess Deluge.
If there is one thing that disappoints me slightly, it is the Sage that summons Snow White has her own brief sections in the story, yet there is no art showing us what she looks like.
Technically, this volume also sees the return of a once formidable foe. Admittedly said foe is a lesser version of the one that came before, but they still provide some fierce fights.
As ever, the fights that do take place in Magical Girl Raising Project are violent, bloody affairs that often result in fatalities. Endou gives battles a real sense of weight, and doesn’t shy away from describing the horrific injuries the magical girls suffer. With the “anyone can die” nature of Magical Girl Raising Project, the fights prove to be unpredictable, and that really pulls you in. Especially when a magical girl you’ve formed an attachment to is fighting for her life.
There seems to be some quirks with the translation for this particular volume of Magical Girl Raising Project. At points, it felt like I was reading the same sentence just put in different ways. Fortunately that seems to subside quite quickly, but it is kind of jarring.
Then there is the ability of the magical girl known as Micchan the Dictionary, which allows her to change one object into another. However, that is only if she changes one character in a word to another. The translators opted for Micchan saying the romaji of the objects, and translating them in brackets. Its probably for the best, as I imagine things would have to get quite twisted up if they tried to translate into English proper.
Snow White’s mission to find the missing magical girl seems simple at first, but things soon become complicated as certain truths come to light. Big things are afoot for the Magical Kingdom, it seems. Magical Girl Raising Project: Aces continues to offer a compelling tale.