A new game has taken Tokyo by storm, drawing girls from all over the city to the Angelic Layer battle arena where players use their minds to control tiny robotic warriors in complicated, deadly fights. New arrival Misaki is enraptured by the mechanical “angels” she sees fighting all over the city, even without completely understanding how Angelic Layer works and what is at stake for the winners and losers of each battle. Forgetting all about her nerves at moving to a strange city to start a new school, Misaki just wants in on the action with her own Angel, even if it takes a month’s allowance! With the help of some new friends, Misaki is soon inducted into Angelic Layer’s mysteries, learning to control her angel using the power of her thoughts from mysterious scientist Icchan and some cool martial arts moves from her new best friends Koutarou and Tamayo. Misaki gains her new skills just in time, as she and her angel Hikaru are faced with a fight against one of Tokyo’s most feared competitors in the Angelic Layer arena. It doesn’t take many rounds of battle for Misaki to discover that there’s more to this game than meets the eye – the question is, do our new players have what it takes to compete?

CLAMP’s drawings of the angels of Angelic Layer are riveting – beautiful captures of speed, agility, and dancer-like grace. Next to them the human “deus” controllers seem young and awkward. Don’t be fooled, however – these girls’ powers of concentration and imagination are honed to razor-sharpness! The world of Angelic Layer is enticing for its glamor and excitement, but also as a place where anyone can become a fantastic sports competitor without possessing any special physical prowess. In these fights quick thinking and street smarts are what separate the winners – if only things had been the same on my 7th grade basketball team! This is at heart a great underdog sports story with enough of a girly twist to appeal to those who might not get into Bull Durham or Field of Dreams.

Angelic Layer, Battle 1
ISBN: 9781931514477
Tokyopop, 2003

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