Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal – Vol. 8 by Shin Yoshida and Naohito Miyoshi (a J!-ENT Manga Review)

May 24, 2016 by  


“Yu-Gi-Oh!” is a manga series with card battles that young fans and even older fans may enjoy. The eighth volume is intense, so for those who love reading more battles in Zexal will surely enjoy this volume as it focuses on the skill and strategy of Yuma/Astral, Ryoga and Kaito taking on Yagumo! Another thrilling volume in the “Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal” manga series, volume eight is recommended!

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Image courtesy of © 2010 Kazuki Takahashi, Shin Yoshida, Naohito Miyoshi. All Rights Reserved.

MANGA TITLE: Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal – Vol. 8

STORY AND ART BY: Shin Yoshida and Naohito Miyoshi


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

RATED: T for Teen

RELEASE DATE: March 1, 2016


In volume 8 of Yugioh Zexal, the duel between Yagumo and Ryoga opens a door to another world that pulls in Yuma and his friends. On the other side, they discover that Yagumo is planning to use a black hole to destroy Earth and the Astral World! Ryoga, Kaito and Yuma band together to stop Yagumo, but even their combined strength may not be enough!

Yagumo is planning to use a black hole to destroy the Earth and Astral World!

Yuma and Astral must team up with Ryoga Kamishiro and Kaito Tenjo in order defeat the powerful Yagumo in a battle.

Find out in the eighth volume of “Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal”!

What is “Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal”?

In 1996, Kazuki Takahashi would create a manga series about card games known as “Yu-Gi-Oh!”. Wanting to create a battle manga that was unique and not about fighting and a fan of tabletop role-playing games, Takahashi did not imagine how popular the series would be among fans worldwide.

With the original manga serialized in Sept. 1996 through 2004, the games have been popular among anime, manga and of course, the card gaming fans in America and also around the world. The series would spawn off various series (featuring manga adaptations by other artists/writers) such as “Yu-Gi-Oh! GX” (2005-2011), “Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D’s” (2008-2011) and most recently with “Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal” (2011-2012).

“Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal” continues the card battling theme that the original series was most popular for. First featured in 2010 and then later serialized on “V Jump” magazine in 2011, the fourth “Yu-Gi-Oh!” series has received an anime adaptation and is currently airing in America on the Cartoon Network’s Saturday morning cartoon block, Toonzai, Vortexx and now on Nicktoons.

The series is set in the near future in a place called “Heartland City” and features a teenager named Yuma Tsukumo who wants to become the next “Duel Monsters” champion, but he has a while to go as he is only an amateur. One day after dueling against his rival Shark, a mysterious spirit known as Astral appears before him (no one else can see him) and gives him advice on how to win.

Astral explains that he needs Yuma’s help as he has lost all his memories, which have been transformed into 99 Xyz Monster cards known as Numbers and have been scattered all around the globe. It’s imperative they find the Numbers as duelist who possess them can gain abilities to combine their forces using the power of Zexal (the ability to combine monsters to create a more powerful monster) which can be dangerous in the wrong hands but also, each card can help bring back Astral’s memories.

And as the both Yuma and Astral form a partnership, unbeknown to the two is that a Numbers Hunter is going around battling people possessing a numbers card, but not only hunting down their card but also taking their soul.

This leads us to the second volume of “Yu-gi-Oh! Zexal”. We are introduced to the Numbers Hunter named Kaito, and find out that he is working with Mr. Heartland, who in turn is working with Dr. Faker who want to use the Numbers cards for their own selfish needs.

Dr. Faker and Mr. Heartland have Kaito trying to collect 100 Numbers as they said it would help make his young brother Haruto normal again. But in truth, he is being used by both Dr. Faker and Mr. Heartland.

As Yuma learns from his sister, details of a Numbers Hunter causing problems, one day both Yuma and Astral come across Kaito, the Numbers Hunter who has stopped time and challenges Yuma to a duel.

But both are quick to realize that Kaito is not just someone more powerful than Yuma when it comes to Zexal battles but Kaito also may be more powerful and knowledgeable about the game, even more than Astral.

And during their battle, Kaito easily demolishes Yuma (with Astral’s help) but before Kaito can end the game and defeat Yuma, he receives news about Haruto and thus Kaito ends the game early.

With Yuma depressed over his loss and knowing he does not have the cards to defeat Kaito, his friends Tetsuo Takeda, Kotori Mizuki, Tokunosuke Hyori, Takashi Todoroki and Cathy decide to form the Numbers Hunters Club and together with Yuma, help search for Numbers cards that will help get him the cards needed to take on Kaito, if they are ever to meet again.

But in order to do that, each of them must put themselves in harms way to get access to a Numbers Card. Are these young teens ready to take on the challenge?

We fast forward to volume 8 as Yuma who is determined to become a duel champion and Astral trying to search for his numbers to find his memories are now near their final journey.

Astral has now regained his memories and what his true mission is all about, meanwhile Yuma is contacted by his long lost father and the importance of stopping Yagumo.

And that is to team up with two people that were his rivals…Ryoga Kamishiro and Kaito Tenjo.

Why is Yagumo so intent in destroying the world?

The characters of “Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal”:

  • Yuma Tsukumo – The main protagonist and a boy with a never give-up attitude. Unfortunately, he is also an underachiever when it comes to school and duels. He dreams of becoming the Dual Monsters champion and he is able to work with Astral, a unknown being that assists him during battles.
  • Astral – A mysterious spirit from another plane of existence who can be seen and heard by Yuma. He has lost his memories, which have been turned into Numbers cards and scattered around the world. He is unsure of his true purpose but by working with Yuma, he hopes he can help Yuma with his battles, while Yuma helps him by acquiring numbers to help regain his memory.
  • Kotori Mizuki – Yuma’s childhood friend and classmate. She doesn’t like to duel but she has a crush on Yuma. She is very smart with computers.
  • Tetsuo Takeda – Yuma’s friend and a skilled duelist who has beaten Yuta in dueling many times before.
  • Takashi Todoroki – The class president of Yuma’s class and a friend.
  • Tokunosuke Otomeura – A kid who has been bullied as young child, it has led to him playing dirty to win duels at times.
  • Cathy – A shy girl who looks like a cat and has a crush on Yuma. She is very wealthy and her home is the headquarters of the Numbers Club which has high tech computer devices to pinpoint numbers cards.
  • Kaito Tenjo – The Numbers Hunter who is trying to save his sick brother, Haruto by collecting 100 Numbers Cards. He is knowledgeable about the battles and overlaying Numbers cards.
  • Ryoga Kamishiro – A rival of Yuma Tsukumo and like Yuma has Astral to aid him, Ryoga has Luna. Known as “Shark”, his goal is to destroy all number cards.
  • Luna – A messenger of the moon who once worked with Dr. Fake and together with Ryoga “Shark” Kamishiro, they want to destroy all number cards.
  • Kyoji Yagumo – Grew up with Shark in an orphanage but for some reason, he decides to align himself with Dr. Faker.

“Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal” is back!

As we approach the final ninth volume, volume 8 features a journey that brings Yuma and Astral to team up with Ryoga and Kaito to face off against Yagumo.  But is Yagumo the true enemy?

A battle of skill and strategy as everyone puts everything on the line in a major battle among the top duelists.

Meanwhile, Yuma receives a visit from his father, long thought of being deceased with a message.  Meanwhile, what drove Yagumo to go mad?

A lot of questions are finally answered in this eighth volume and setting up the epic battle with the true enemy for the final ninth volume!

The concept of “Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal” is one that will appeal not only to fans of the original series but those who are familiar with RPG video games such as “Shin Megami Tensei” (especially the “Persona” series), as the goal is to combine monsters and in this case, using monsters and creating an overlay network via Zexal and creating something new and powerful.

Not only does this up the level of the game (especially those playing the actual real world game of “Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal”) and also make it more challenging but it’s definitely an intriguing twist for “Yu-Gi-Oh~” card gaming fans.

And because with each battle he wins, he acquires those cards and is able to use them in battle against other foes and become part of his strategy.

It’s important to note that with each volume purchased of “Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal” an exclusive card is featured. In this case, an ultra rare Numbers S39: Utopia the Lightning card.

Overall, “Yu-Gi-Oh!” is a manga series with card battles that young fans and even older fans may enjoy. The eighth volume is intense, so for those who love reading more battles in Zexal will surely enjoy this volume as it focuses on the skill and strategy of Yuma/Astral, Ryoga and Kaito taking on Yagumo!

Another thrilling volume in the “Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal” manga series, volume eight is recommended!

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