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LBX: Little Battlers eXperience Vol. 1 – New Dawn Raisers (Story and Art by Hideaki Fujii) (a J!-ENT Manga Review)

September 26, 2014 by  



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“LBX: Little Battlers eXperience Vol. 1 – New Dawn Raisers” is an entertaining manga for those who wanting a mecha storyline involving robot battles without the complex characters or deep storyline.  But most importantly, a storyline that both young and old can enjoy!

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© 2011 by Hideaki Fujii. All Rights Reserved.

MANGA TITLE: LBX: Little Battlers eXperience Vol. 1 – New Dawn Raisers

STORY AND ART BY: Hideaki Fujii

FIRST PUBLISHED IN JAPAN: SHOGAKUKAN

PUBLISHED IN USA BY: VIZ Media, LLC/Shonen Jump Manga

RATED: A for All Ages

RELEASE DATE: November 4, 2014

Van Yamano loves Little Battlers eXperience, also known as LBXs, the hot toy of the future in present day 2050. And it’s kind of cool that his dad invented them! But when the plane his dad is on goes down, everything goes wrong for Van. Until he starts getting hints that his dad may be still alive… and that a secret organization is coming after Van to procure the secrets that might be hidden inside his own LBX robot, Achilles!

In 2011, Level-5 created a Sony PSP video game called “Danball Senki” or “Little Battlers eXperience” (LBX).

An anime series was released back in 2011 plus a manga adaptation by Hideaki Fujii which was serialized in Shogakukan’s CoroCoro Comic.

Since then, there have been several video game, anime series, movies and manga series created and in America, an anime series began airing on Nicktoons in Aug. 2014.

With interest outside of Japan in the “Little Battlers eXperience” video games and anime series, the first manga series titled “LBX: Little Battlers eXperience” will now be released in the United States courtesy of Viz Media.

“LBX: Little Battlers eXperience Vol. 1 – New Dawn Raisers” begins with a young Van being introduced to an LBX robot by his father, Professor Yamano.  And how little Van became a fan of the miniature robots.

Fastforward years later and we learn that Professor Yamano was possibly killed during a plane crash and because the pain was too much on the family, Van’s mother asked for her son to never bring up an LBX or have anything to do with it.

One day, a woman escapes a highly guarded facility with a brief case.  As she is pursued by LBX’s, she manages to escape long enough to meet with Van and tell him that she was sent by someone he knows very well and that whatever is in the briefcase, he must not let anyone take it.

When he opens the brief case, he finds an LBX AX-00 and is instantly attacked by a group who send their LBX’s after Van to retrieve the LBX AX-00.  Realizing that he the controls for the LBX is familiar, Van is able to defeat his enemies.

But life for Van Yamano will not go any easier now that he possesses an LBX that a sinister organization is after.  But who is behind Van receiving the LBX and why does the evil organization want it so badly?

Find out in the first volume of “LBX: Little Battlers eXperience Vol. 1 – New Dawn Raisers”!

In many ways,  “LBX: Little Battlers eXperience Vol. 1 – New Dawn Raisers” is a lighthearted mecha storyline that not only markets itself to children and adults but also helps build interest in the popular Level-5 video games that were released in Japan.

While the video games have not been released in the U.S., with the release of the anime series on Nicktoons, perhaps this may lead to the release of the video games in America.

And that is a good thing as the “Danball Senki” video games are among the entertaining and fun robot battling titles out there that is non-Gundam or heavy mecha-related.

The manga series focuses on a young protagonist who becomes the sole keeper/trainer/controller of a mysterious LBX that an evil organization desperately wants to obtain it by all means.

And when Van starts to learn why the evil organization is after it and who was responsible for creating it, suffice to say, it becomes personal for Van and he will do all it takes to learn how to use his LBX and prepare for many battles against other top LBX fighters out there.

For those familiar with the “Custom Robo” or even other popular “mecha” video games out there,  the ability to have a robot, equip and modify them for battle plays a big part in “LBX: Little Battlers eXperience Vol. 1 – New Dawn Raisers” but without too much of the technical aspects.

The storyline incorporates some of the adventure elements that you would normally read from adventure series such as “Pokemon” but instead of one young lad trying to be the best trainer, Van wants to be the best at controlling his LBX and take on the best LBX fighters out there.  And despite having a powerful LBX, it’s going to take a lot of skill and learning to prepare for battle.

Volume 1 is no doubt the introduction to the characters and the LBX atmosphere but there is no doubt that the next volume will be focused on actual battles that Van and his LBX which he has named as Achilles, will need to win.

The story by Hideaki Fujii is simple and entertaining for young and old and his artwork and character designs are quite good, but created more to attract younger readers without the uber-detail.

Overall, “LBX: Little Battlers eXperience Vol. 1 – New Dawn Raisers” is an entertaining manga for those who wanting a mecha storyline involving robot battles without the complex characters or deep storyline.  But most importantly, a storyline that both young and old can enjoy!

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