Tokyo Majin Gakuen Kenpucho Tou
This review is based completely on the English dub of the anime. I have not played the game or read the manga.
The name of the anime doesn't really fit it's story. The name means Tokyo Wizard Academy, but it doesn't really have anything to do with what most people describe as wizards. Instead, we've got demons and ogres. However, the main cast also has some supernatural powers - which could very well be why the series has the name that it does. Anyway, the story starts out with mysterious deaths involving the "Reborn Dead" (referred to as "Living Dead" in the dub) occurring in the nights of Tokyo - these usually involve people disappearing at night, reappearing during the day as a corpse; however, they're somehow able to escape from the morgue before being autopsied. This is where the main cast comes in, starting with Tatsuma Hiyuu and Kyouichi Horaiji. The two, along with the rest of their group stay up every night to find out what's causing the mysterious deaths. Soon after, they find out that there's a more powerful demon behind all the deaths.
It doesn't sound that bad, does it? The summary of the anime is what draws you in, what actually happens keeps you pretty interested. The first thing you see is people getting stabbed - and who's the witness? A baby! Funny thing is, that baby is practically the main character of this anime (oops, guess I've said too much).
The art isn't very good, to be honest. This anime was created in the late 2000s? I couldn't tell. It looked more like a 1990s production. The character design was pretty well-done, but the animation takes away from it. I've seen FUNimation Entertainment put out downright amazing anime in terms of art and animation, but I have to say the animation for this was a disappointment - something I decided before I even knew FUNimation was involved in the production of the series.
I will separate this into two sections: music and voice. Why am I doing that? Because it will look way too cluttered if I try to put my opinions on the OP, ED, and voice actors all in one paragraph.
Music - Screamo fans will definitely appreciate the OP. However, if one is more into pop/rock, they won't like it too much. That being said, it's not a very bad song, but it's not necessarily iPod-worthy. However, that depends on who you ask. The vocals for the track are done nicely enough, but depending on one's musical taste - the screaming could make or break the decision of whether or not it's a "good" song. ACID definitely did a great job with the song, and if you did away with the screamo bits - I'd say it's one of my top 5 OP tracks. The ED is absolutely beautiful. I could say it's the most amazing ED that's ever been created, but as I haven't seen every anime ever created - it could very well be wrong. That doesn't, however, change the fact that the song is just spectacular. I can't stress how much I love the ED track for this anime. The song just showcases how talented ACID is when it comes to pure vocal abilities.
Voice - The voice actors aren't really anything special. Kyouichi sounds like any other delinquent. Aoi sounds like the classic good girl, or girl next door. Yuuya sounds like a typical jock. One line from Hisui and you automatically know that he's one of those "loyal servant" types. Komaki and Tatsuma, on the other hand, are hard to describe in terms of voice; you honestly can't tell much about them from how they sound - while the other two are dead give-aways as soon as you hear them. Whether or not that's a good or bad thing depends on the individual viewer. On one hand, not being able to show the character's personality through voice acting isn't necessarily a good thing. However, Komaki's voice actress, Melissa Pritchett, redeems herself in that she can depict emotion very well (seen in "Dream Hell"). Brandon Hearnsberger, the voice of Tatsuma, is also capable of this - making him seem a little less mysterious. Vic Mignogna once again shows off his skill by voicing the villain, Tendo Kozunu; I could just hear the evil in his voice. It's no surprise though, he seems to do a great job with any role he plays when it comes to dubbing anime.
The characters are pretty well-developed, the main ones anyway. It's hard to describe them without giving too much away about the show. We see that Kyouichi, despite his mean nature towards everyone but Tatsuma, seems to have a bit of a soft spot for Aoi - he's constantly protecting her, even when getting rid of her may prove more beneficial. We see that Aoi has a somewhat dark past despite her kind, gentle nature. The relationship between Yuuya and Komaki is great for comic relief, especially since she's so oblivious to Yuuya's blatant crush on her. Komaki, despite the strong facade she puts on in front of everyone, is very emotional - which is the exact opposite of what one would expect from her. She could be the most emotional of them all, and when her emotions get out-of-whack, her ability to fight is also affected - making her weaker than she really is. Yuuya is your typical jock - with the crush on probably the most oblivious girl in the show. It's honestly surprising Kyoko didn't just blurt it out. Tatsuma is just as mysterious by the end of the season as he was in the beginning. You have some questions answered, but at the same time you're left with more. He's possibly the most complex character in the show.
On the other hand, Tendo Kozunu, is much more than just some malicious person off the street looking for revenge. On the inside, he's just a sad little boy that wants to be with his mother - or at least avenge her. He's haunted by his mother's death, making it a bit hard for one to outright despise him despite all the horrible things he's done. He has a strong hatred towards Tatsuma from the first time they meet - it's later revealed that he blames Tatsuma's ancestors for his mother's death. The man is extremely manipulative, but there's something to him making it hard to completely hate him. The little girl seen with him gets no character development whatsoever - well, aside from the fact that she's a little brat.
You definitely won't get bored. However, it's better to watch it over a long time. There's just a lot packed into one episode, but it's better take a break between viewings so you can take it all in.
7/10 - It's pretty good anime. I wouldn't call it one of the best, but it's not something that you should just brush off. Those who say it has no storyline are either not paying very much attention, or didn't even bother giving this anime a real shot.