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The card reads as follows: Congratulations! You are one of the 1 in 100,000 people who has been entered in the amazing LIAR GAME TOURNAMENT!
Along with the postcard there is 100 million yen in notes. That's the beginning of the Liar Game. When the game ends, in 30 days, you will have to return your 100 million. If your opponent steals them, he can keep them as a prize, and you will have a debt of 100 million...
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Trying to be clever
Imagine. You are in your living room. Suddenly someone sprints through your garden and tapes a note to your front window. The note says: "When I ring your doorbell and you open the door, you agree to hand me 2 quadrillion Yen." You start to panic. Will you be forced to keep your door locked for the rest of your life, because of some random stranger. Then your thought progress is interupted by your doorbell ringing. Of course smart lad you are, you ask whos ringing before you open the door. The person on the other side says postmen. So you open up. But ooh the clever devil fooled you. Its the person who just sprinted through your garden in a post uniform. But the man shows mercy and agrees to take your family jewels instead of the money. You hand him the box containing the jewels but replace the stuff lying on the bottom with rocks. The man checks the box only sees the stuff on top and walks away. You take your well earned rest knowing that you tricked that fool out of half your jewels. ;D
If that described you perfectly, you are just like a character out of the liar game. ^^ This is the first problem the series has. Apart from 1-3 characters who are about as intelligent as the average Joe everybody is really stupid and just there to fill the numbers.
The second problem lies with the author. He tries hard to create a threathening athmosphere with (seemingly) hopless situations for the characters. Sadly he ignores any law doing so and is keen to invent new ones that don't exist. (To name an example. A contract is either binding to everyone signing or to nobody. It doesn't matter if you sign with "Spiderman" or your actual name.) So one has to simply accept whatever happens in this series deep thinking and placing yourself in the shoes of any player different from the main char will tear up (huge) plot holes. I'm mentioning that because it is sad for a manga focusing on mind games and logic. There also lies the next problem sometimes the author overlooks holes in his games, meaning he declares a strategy a sure win strategy when in fact it isn't. (Some might remember a certain game where players traded already casted votes but nobody thought of trading uncast votes, which of course would've destroyed the authors sure win strategy and would mean its possible to name a winner even before round one)
So those were a lot of negatives. But I like a lot of the games the author designed. It's fun thinking how oneself would act faced with the games presented. Also logic flaws and stupidness arent on a level that makes it impossible to read the series. On the contrary. Some reactions will make you laugh. Creating a somewhat light atmosphere for the series. Also one has to mention that with advancing chapters the author spends more time thinking his games through and the quality improves somewhat. Also decent manga focusing on psychology of the characters are hard to find. (I can only think of Kiseijuu and Eternal Sabbath.) So despite negatives this is still a decent read.
This manga is simply amazing!
Art The artwork of this series is not the best. There's no character that is drop dead gorgeous like the male leads in shoujo mangas, or a cool looking character like in shounen. The outline of the characters are rough, and the expression for the characters are often overly exaggerated. However the artwork does grow on you and as you read the series you get more comfortable with the artwork, The depth of the characters and complexity of the story draws your attention away from the art. Often the exaggerated features of the the characters acts as comic relief and further enhance the quality of the series.
Story The story is very intriguing. The first notion of the story immediately intrigued me. As I read further i was more and more drawn to the story. The use of real psychology terms enhances the story and makes you feel like your learning something. The complexity of the story of course have to be mentioned, and you are always left wondering just how Akiyama and Kanzaki will get out of these tough situations. This manga is in no way a light read, sometime I have to read a chapter more than once to figure out whats going on. This is NOT a manga where you can skip a few chapters and still know whats going on.
Characters In some ways the characters are stereotypical. You have Akiyama, the seemingly cold yet genius male lead and Kanzaki the naive but truthful female lead. However as the series progresses the you see characters grow and develop and they grow on you. Also the unlikely friendships formed during the games will warm you heart. How the characters react when they are tempted by money and threatened by huge amounts of debt, really gets you assessing yourself. How will I act if I was in this situation?
Overall this series is bound to challenge you intellectually. There are some faults and improvements that could be made...but this series is amazing! Be ready to get mind blown!
Makes me wanna take up psychology.
There are no words for this manga. Just freaking amazing. Deserves so much praise. It sparked my interest for psychology. So so good and interesting!
Characters Akiyama is one badass. He is THE genious. I love that cool character of his. I know maybe he's too perfect since he always seems to find a way, regardless of what. Who cares? It goes with the story. Even so, there's Nao to balance him off. She's the complete opposite of him. Some people find her annoying but in my opinion, it's like food. Akiyama is like spicy food and Nao's like the cold drink to cool that spiciness. (Lol what?) She has to be there to contrast him. Plus, I like how people are portrayed though sometimes a bit exaggerated but who wouldn't freak out if you think you're gonna have a huge debt?
Story This is exactly why this manga is so amazing. The foundation is psychology. Well, more focused on social psychology. It tells it to you real and there actual terms. After reading, I would go research by myself to find out more. It's so interesting! Even when I don't understand how something works, I will keep reading that chapter until I finally do. There is so much rereading potential here. It's not complete yet but I have reread it a few times to understand certain concepts better and refresh my memory of the story (because it isn't complete yet).
Art Some people say it's terrible. Okay, well that may be true. It's still bearable though. In my honest opinion however, I freaking love it. It sucks yes but I love it. Why? It gives an unexpected comical twist to the story. The expressions are so priceless, especially when people lose. It's like purposely bad to lessen the tension a bit. It's like Angel Densetsu (which is a hilarious as hell comedy) which has terribad art but serves its purpose for comical reasons. The art does get better so don't worry. Anyway, it's such a minor thing. The story and its base completely overrides any flaws the series has. I don't care. It's awesome!
What are you waiting for? Go read it. I swear you will be glued.
I love this manga with all my breath, heart, soul, even if the thought of a game like the Liar Game actually existing in the real world - and it COULD... maybe - creeps the heck outta me. But that's just the thing, when you delve into this world: the line between what is and what could be get blurred. I'm not saying that Shinobu Kaitani's writing is without its flaws: there are some loopholes, and several instances of reality suspension, but overall it's a bold, daring dive into the human psyche and the darkness that lurks within.
But ultimately it's not a pessimistic piece of work, although I wouldn't go so far as to say it's optimistic: but Nao (bumbling, naive, well-meaning, endearing Nao) does represent something, and the way he's made her out to be integral to Akiyama's successes in the Liar Game - where the reason the two of them will succeed, in the end, is because they are partners in this - is, I believe, a reflection of his stance in this world of "liars". And I LOVE when writers, artists, whatever use their medium of choice to advocate something they believe in.
One of my favourite parts of this manga too is Nao's growth. Yes, she starts off as weak - of course she would, any normal person WOULD be a little shaky if they'd ever gotten involved in something as horrifying as the Liar Game - but because of Akiyama and her own experiences, becomes so much stronger, something even the dealers take note of. And I love Akiyama too as a character, though he's so much flatter than Nao: I think the spin-off centered on him is Shinobu Kaitani's way of fleshing out his character without detracting overmuch from the central plot of the Liar Game, which I thought was a pretty smart way to make us care about Akiyama and still preserve the flow of the story.
All in all, this is a really good story, and one with fridge value, that will constantly benefit from repeat reads. The only problem, if there is one, is that since it's ongoing, we can't read it all in one-shot. SIGH. HUNGRY FOR MORE.
... Last updated on October 23rd, 2012, 10:57am
Trust The Damn Writer Nao Haters!
Frick, I am so annoyed at the comments I am reading that go, "Oh I dropped the manga because Nao was too annoying 20-40 chapters in." Jesus, have any of you actually read anything good before? There is this thing called character development, and this manga does it wonderfully. It would be completely unrealistic if Nao went from being so honest that she gave up and cried, to becoming a cunning fox right after she met Akiyama, and that would ruin the whole freaking story!
No, instead of that we, as well as all of the other characters (who often comment on it), get to be surprised as we watch her develop and learn to think critically, in the same way that the readers are learning to think critically in an attempt to guess what will happen next. Of course she started off relying on Akiyama, and she made me so angry that it was hard to stick by her stupidity (especially in the downsizing game - oh dear god), however, the Liar Game wouldn't be interesting without her!
What fun is a game when you know everyone will try to outwit eachother? Her existence and HONEST intentions (the person who said she is a selfish liar is just nuts), are the twist that makes Liar Game so interesting!
I've been following this damn manga since it's first chapter release and I've become obsessed. I swear I'm starting to think like one of the contestants and I'm probably on the same mental level as Nao. Haha.
You never know what's going to happen, this manga always keeps you on your toes even though there are moments you can't fully understand what's going on. It seems like the games become a little to intricate and it's hard to follow sometimes. Especially when trying to understand Akiyama's explanations and plans. But, regardless, you're still engrossed in the games.
There will be moments where it seems like Akiyama and Nao will lose, but somehow Akiyama will turn it around! There are moments when you feel like all hope is loss but everything will shift. There are moments when you think that Nao has really f-ed up this time, but it actually works out in the end.
And this is because Akiyama and Nao make a brilliant team. Everyone keeps saying how they dropped this series because of Nao, but I think she's an amazing character. Okay, she's not a genius like Akiyama, but she has redeeming characteristics. Nao is foolishly honest, but because of this people let their guard down around her. She's won games before without Akiyama's help and she's even f-ed with people's mental state because they only see her as a weakling and they end up slipping up in the game or revealing something important or joining team NaoAki.
I also think that she serves as something to "protect". Akiyama sees his mother in Nao, which makes him want to protect and help her because she's so naive. It's the whole reason he started playing the game, though he says his reason for continuing is to bring the organization down. But, the point is, it's a reason for him to work hard. Well, that and the fact that they are shouldering billions of dollars in debt. Hahaha.
Anywho, it's a great manga. Very original, intriguing, mind blowing and deep. There are just moments in the story that make you take a step back and say "damn, didn't see that coming"
Give it a try. You might like it or it might not be your thing, but this manga at LEAST deserves a try. Too much work has gone into this intricate story to be overlooked.
I can see how annoying Nao seems at first, but if you look in the categories of this manga, "character growth" is amongst the list. She is certainly very naive and rather dim-witted but she DOES become more intelligent. Her honest and pure character remains but she doesn't have to rely on Akiyama. You should really read the manga more to really acknowledge and appreciate Nao, because I've come to like her almost as much as Akiyama. Both great characters.
Anyways, this manga is really interesting. It's like a better, more psychological version of Death Note. Almost. Well, just a little bit. I love it. Kaitani Shinobu is a genius, I don't know how he could come up with this stuff.
... Last updated on August 21st, 2012, 7:48pm
Dropped it because of the Annoying (too honest & idealistic) female Lead....
I was really looking forward for this and I even liked its psycological part but the female lead ruined it. I thought it will not have ideal/unrealistic character but I was wrong. The female lead is annoying,crybaby and too much saint like personality. I tried to overlook this but I was unable do so after 15-20 chapters. If you can overlook the main female lead,then you might enjoy it.
Edit: I never said that there was no character development. Its just that I cant handle too honest and idealistic characters. I dont think such idealistic characters really exist in real life. Seinen and psycological mangas shows realistic aspects or so I believe.
... Last updated on October 7th, 2012, 3:06am
Great manga but annoying
This is a superb read. It's really not for everyone but it's story is one of a kind. I just started reading this and it stirred up my excitement. But seriously, Nao is as stupid at fvck.
Spoiler (mouse over to view)
I'm already at chapter 40 and she have already participated at many rounds and types of LIAR GAMES and she's always fooled. it's like, in every strategy or plan, she will seriously mess up, end up crying then seek or Akiyama. When will she ever learn? jeez, so annoying!
I Agree with Infinity9001
This series is just amazing. But it's also very... limited in scope of audience. Many may read it and not really understand it at all.
The problem with this manga, for others at least, is its astounding complexity. It begins simply enough, with a seemingly stupid female lead and a cold, yet interestingly helpful male lead, but it quickly spirals into something that there is no way you can jump into. Often times if it's been too long since the last release, I have to go back and read a few volumes before it. The challenges become increasingly difficult to figure out, and soon the reader is left questioning everything, if he/she so chooses.
I find this manga simply awesome because of this complexity. Because not only is there a wonderful amount of character growth (especially with Nao), but also, this development is weaved so well into the over-arcing plot and the challenges that the characters face. The motives become more difficult to figure out, and each game becomes a layered puzzle that I personally find fun to figure out.
My suggestion would be that if you're into the solving puzzle thing, try it. The female lead undergoes an astounding amount of growth in this series, and I think you'll find yourself pleasantly surprised.
Now if you're one that doesn't want to have to think, forget it. This is an incredibly difficult manga to simply watch and understand... it's one that you almost have to immerse yourself in and figure it out. It is the epitome of a psychological manga, and one where it's difficult to just sit back and watch when there's a great puzzle waiting.