Seventeen-year-old Hajime Nagumo is your average, everyday otaku. However, his simple life of pulling all-nighters and sleeping in school is suddenly turned upside down when he, along with the rest of his class, is summoned to a fantasy world! They’re treated like heroes and tasked with the duty of saving the human race from utter extinction. But what should have been any otaku's paradise quickly turns into Hajime’s nightmare. While the rest of his class are blessed with godlike powers, Hajime’s job, Synergist, only has a single transmutation skill. Ridiculed and bullied by his classmates for being weak, he soon finds himself in despair. Will he be able to survive in this dangerous world of monsters and demons with only a glorified blacksmith’s level of strength?
Source: Seven Seas
The story starts of great, there is plenty of emotional depth and a relatable protagonist. However, as the story progresses it becomes a glorified emo cliche with way too much focus on romanic attractions and a not so clear motive for the protagonist to follow. It get's worse with just how over powered the protagonist becomes and his general outlook on everything gradually changes from pessimistic loner to tsundere straight man. I felt like the story was made rather well in the beginning but then it felt like the author swapped out with an awkward pervert that has daddy issues. Really, everything from after he meets bunny girl is just a mess.
Vague spoilers ahead: I'll start by saying that I'm a little biased in favor of this series. I started watching, then reading Arifureta at the peak of covid and fell in love with the author's creativity. To try to simply describe Arifureta. The story is brutal, the MC doesn't get anything without sacrificing limbs and blood. It is hilarious, the characters are genuinely quirky and messed up due to difficult lives. Hajime is unique among OP characters. It commands your sense of adventure. Lastly, it's genuinely heartwarming at times; seeing the way someone who is beated an abused reacts to good things happening when they rarely do is well portrayed here. Now for the nitty gritty. Arifureta is a story that captivates the readers imagination in a way that most shounen, fantasy, and Isekai stories with OP characters fail to. The main character, Hajime isn't just OP the second he's transported to another world. Though he does end up as OP as they come, he does so on his own without some BS cheats that come standard to the Isekai genre. The writing describes in perfect detail how our MC is torn and beaten down time and time again only to stand back up through sheer force of will. It's done in a way that even series like Naruto or Bleach can't hold a candle to. Hajime is pushed to his limits in a way so brutal that I can only compare it to Tokyo Ghoul's Kaneki. The world and the side characters in this world also feel fresh in the sea of Isekai that never focus on building and maintaining a large cast. Side characters from the early volumes appear time and time again in later volumes just to remind the reader that the world is dynamic and changing along with Hajime's journey. Nothing in the world is stagnant and no side stories are left unfinished. The main cast is given equal time to the main character to develop and become lovable characters with unique personalities, struggles, and lessons learned. Best of all, the story finishes as strong as it begins if not stronger with the final plot twist having the most satisfying conclusion possible by tying many previous problems and plot points into a perfect ending. Reading Arifureta really does make you feel a part of Hajime's a d Yue's adventures. If you've read this far and I've potentially convinced you to read, I want to address something. I detest harems. To the point that I almost dropped this series when I saw it "devolving" into one. The story does eventually go this way. However, it's done in what I would describe as the only acceptable way to do so. The MC does not want a Harem, the MC does not agree to a harem, not does he treat members of it nearly as well as his main girl. He is genuinely mean to them for trying to force their way in and actively pushes the girls away.
I really enjoyed it but had to drop it due to Japtems horrible translation skills, having to read paragraphs 4-5 times over, re arranging it in my head to be able to understand it was painful, all in all this would be a great read if someone came and copied his broken english and fixed it up into something readable.
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