Let's write a Shonen battle anime


Guild Member
Inspired by some thoughts around how most Shonen tends to lose track of it's own plot and how drawn out events are on a per-episode basis I thought this could make for a potential forum game.

Rules are simple. Write out the episode number (or title if you feel creative) and write a short two-three line paragraph following on from the previous post and that will be the events of the current episode.

Episode 1

Mugi had only one dream, he wanted to be the worlds greatest darts player. After class he would practice darts at his best friends house, who's father came second at the grand national super elite world fighting darts championship. The biggest event to ever be on TV each year. Mugi's friend Ken taught him some skills passed onto him from his father. The next day on his way to Ken's house a mysterious figure blocked his path.
Episode 2

"It's dangerous to go alone. Take this," said the mysterious figure. He handed Mugi a legendary artifact known as the Master Sword.

"You must travel to the Cave of Games at Land's End to meet the Old Master. There you will learn your craft. Good luck!" And with a mischievous grin, the mysterious stranger vanished in a puff of grey smoke.

Mugi was taken aback: Land's End would surely take an entire cour to get to. Unless...

Undaunted, and with the glittering Master Sword in hand, the young darts hopeful set out on his dangerous journey. By taxi.
Episode 3 - the long road

Fortunately for Mugi the Cave of Games was only a few blocks away at the shopping arcade in his home town, it turned out to be a small curiosities shop. He stepped out of the taxi and paid the 1020 yen fee. He stepped inside the cramped store and saw all kinds of strange curiosities lining the shelves. Dragonball radars, detailed maps to the hidden One Piece, training scrolls to become the next Hokage, medicines to turn ones sister back from a Demon. And what first caught Mugi's eye, a dart board hanging from the wall.

Sat at the counter was an old man smoking an ornate black and gold pipe.

"Welcome" he said while eying the master sword. "And now come at me with everything you have"
Episode 4 - Why?

It was at this point that Mugi briefly questioned the reasoning behind him needing a master sword to become a champion darts player? 🤔 He pondered this for about 5 seconds, then shrugged and ran towards the old man, who promptly started blowing sparkling thick smoke out of his ornate pipe! As it cleared, Mugi found himself lying on the floor as his sword clattered to a stop near him. Then he heard a smash. "Damnit boy you've broken this antique vase from Ouran High School Host Club's 1928 Stage Adaptation! How will you repay me?" The old man fumed, yet more smoke almost coming out of his ears as he stood over him glaring.
Episode 5: "Dispirited Away"

And so it was decided that Mugi would repay the old man by spending the rest of the day working in the shop's bathhouse for spirits and yōkai.

It was backbreaking work, hunched over, on his knees on a hard surface with no kneeling pad, scrubbing as hard as he could, while all the time trying his hardest to make it look like this scenario was its own original idea and not a cheap and cynical Hayao Miyazaki rip-off. Honestly, hadn't the old man ever heard of modern labour laws? Sheesh.

It was while Mugi was crouched down on the floor trying to remove a dark purple stain on the floor that the incident happened. A customer wearing only a towel and looking suspiciously like M. Bison from a certain arcade fighting game (or Vega if you're playing the Japanese version) was clearly not paying attention to where he was walking and stumbled A over T, right over the top of Mugi. The angry customer, who seemed to have been probably looking for a fight anyway, glared at Mugi for a couple of seconds before launching himself at our young protagonist as a blazing human torpedo, apparently boosted by psychic powers.
Episode 6 - I didn't need to see that!

Beefy Street Fighter rip-off character 19's towel suddenly fell to the floor and his terrifying expression shifted to one of comical, red-faced embarrassment as he quickly covered his exposed lower regions with a silver tray of considerable beauty and value.

"What's all this commotion? That's an antique too you know!" said the old man.

"Aw jeez Oyaji-san can ya put it on my tab please?" said Monsieur Beefy in a gruff but sheepish voice.

"Why can't you just put your towel back on"

"Uhh... because it's been on the floor?"

"Oh for goodness' sakes..."
Episode 7: A recap already?!

Predictably, Mugi was left to pick up the pieces from another narrowly avoided fight. No blood might have been spilled, but there were some scuff marks on the floor, so he was immediately put to work. At least the marks were light enough to use a broom this time, so the labour was a lot less strenuous.

As Mugi swept up after others, he paused to think about how he'd gotten to this point. Sepia-toned flashbacks of events only recently gone by played in his mind's eye. He couldn't shake the nagging feeling that something was amiss. How come a series that was billed as a shōnen battle anime hasn't had a single fight sequence yet? And why is there already a recap episode? Are there already serious scheduling issues going on behind the scenes at Studio XYZ?

As Mugi gripped the broom in his hand to get back to the job at hand, he felt as if someone was watching him.
Episode 8

Mugi raises his head in alert. Looking for the source of the gaze he feels. Then suddenly 3 darts wiz past his head. All landing on bullseye on the board in the wall.

"Well well" said a shrill voice. "I came for the old man but you will do"

From the shadows emerges a ninja with a sinister grin. Standing before Mugi almost twice his height.

"Yes I will warm up with you" he pulls out some more darts nestled between his fingers. "I challenge you to a game of 301. And it shall be the last game you ever play"
Episode 10 - I smell perfectly fine, thankyou!

Mugi took a deep breath, then yelled assertively "Ninjas? We don't need no stinkin' ninjas!"

The ninja responded huffily "Well tough I'm already in the anime! Also I find your remark most offensive as my personal hygiene is of a high standard."

Mugi muttered under his breath "Damnit I thought that would work!" Then said "OK, you're on! I'll use my own darts!"

Mugi fumbled in his Smiggle (TM) brand backpack "They gotta be in here somewhere, I swear I-OWW! Yep, found 'em!"

Who is this mysterious ninja? Will Mugi survive his slight finger injury? (thankfully he's had his tetanus shot!) Find out in the next exciting episode!
Episodes 11-18: The Ninja Match Arc

During which a single darts match is played. There are many internal monologues while the players line up their shots, shocked reactions and exclamations of “impossible!”. Every episode ends on a cliffhanger where it looks as if each player will gain the upper hand.

Ultimately though, it ends in a narrow defeat for a stunned Mugi, who immediately breaks down and questions his entire existence. But the old master has seen the potential in our young hero and promises to train him in the Super darts technique, which will prepare him for his next match against the suave, hat-wearing, perpetually smoking darts player.

The old man warns Mugi however that this will not be enough to beat the wacky comic relief darts player, the busty, sure of herself oujo-sama darts player and especially not his childhood friend turned bitter rival, the edgy, serious, bishi darts player. To beat them, he will have to learn the Ultra, Giga and Ultimate darts techniques from someone else, because the old master is about to die of a terminal illness and despite having just met him, his last wish is to see Mugi win his next match. His training begins now.

One day, he will face the darts ninja again, but not until they need another filler arc.
Episodes 19+20: "For What Purpose?" parts 1+2 (known to fans as the "Instrumentality arc")

Following his crushing loss in the previous episode, and despite the promise of expert guidance and training that could help him climb to the very top of the darts world, Mugi finds himself unable to even get out of bed.

He looks drawn and weary, lacking vitality and any light in his eyes as he sinks deep into his inner world where he questions the motivation behind his ultimate goal, and the meaning of his own existence generally. Images of his bishi osananajimi [childhood friend] flash through his mind. His former friend, whom he hasn't communicated with beyond a few perfunctory FaceTube messages for the last four years, appears to Mugi in a vision and cruelly taunts him. "I'll be the one to become the King of Darts, not a rank amateur like you," he scoffs coldly. The shot is framed to have him looking down on Mugi from a higher perspective.

"Why are you treating me like this?" pleads Mugi, gripping his head and and grabbing at his hair as if in a vain attempt to grasp the source of the intrusion. "Tell me! PIETRO!!!"

His old friend just smirks. "You really don't know, do you?"

"No!!!" yells Mugi. "TELL ME!"

Pietro just turns away a half-turn. He always did have a way with moody-looking mannerisms; he made them look so effortless and textbook, much like his darts game.

"It must be nice to be able to so casually forget the past like that," he sneers. And, with that, he walks away, hands in pockets, and melts into the inky black surroundings.

"I will make you all remember the name Pietro Kageyama," his voice echoes from seemingly everywhere at once. "Mark my words."

This scene is the most important moment of these two episodes, though there are further metaphysical exchanges between Mugi and other important figures in his life, including his absent parents, who are working overseas, his former PE teacher Mr. Sawashiro ("We'll all be hearing the name Mugi Okamoto again on the news one day! That's the feeling I get."), and his old boss at the newsagents' where he once did his paper round ("If you apply yourself in life like you did in delivering newspapers, then...")

This pair of episodes is praised by some industry commentators for its sakuga [high-quality artwork], in spite of its sparsity of backgrounds and movement, but dismissed as others as "a glorified radio drama".

Will Mugi recover to be able to take up his promised training regime?
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Episode 21: Darts of the Dead

Just as it seems Mugi will be consumed by his despair, he is visited by the spirit of Jocky Wilson who relays to him all the hardships he suffered in his life and still became a great darts champion. Mugi is moved by his words, and Jocky reveals he can impart to Mugi a secret darts technique unknown to the living, but before he can do so the spirit of Eric Bristow bursts in to challenge him for the afterlife darts crown. By the laws of the darts spirits he cannot refuse, and must leave Mugi to forge his own path.

Snapped out of his self-pity, Mugi rushes to see the Old Master, now ready and eager to begin his training. But it is too late. He spent so long getting over his defeat that the old man is already dead. His funeral was last week, his currently inconsequential (but suspiciously well designed for a background character) granddaughter informs him, where has Mugi been? Distraught, Mugi sits in the gutter outside in the rain and weeps for being such a disappointment to the old man and to himself and to the spirit of Jocky Wilson.

Suddenly, Mugi feels a hand on his shoulder.
“I hear you’re in need of a trainer, Okamoto”
Lifting his gaze from the floor, Mugi is faced, grinning down at him, with Mr. Sawashiro. Mugi didn’t even know he played darts. He still isn’t sure that he does.