I-Chu

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I-Chu
アイ★チュウ
(Ai★Chū)
Game
DeveloperLiber Entertainment
Genre
Platform
Released
  • JP: June 26, 2015 (Android)
    July 3, 2015 (iOS)
    November 10, 2022 (Nintendo Switch)
Game
I-Chu Étoile Stage
DeveloperLiber Entertainment
Genre
Platform
Released
  • JP: April 30, 2020
Anime television series
I-Chu: Halfway Through the Idol
Directed byHitoshi Nanba
Produced byTwin Engine
Written byYoshimi Narita
Music byYoshiaki Dewa
StudioLay-duce
Licensed byCrunchyroll
Original networkTokyo MX, BS11, RNB
Original run January 6, 2021 March 24, 2021
Episodes12 (List of episodes)

I-Chu (Japanese: アイ★チュウ, Hepburn: Ai★Chū) is a Japanese mobile game developed by Liber Entertainment. The original game was released on June 26, 2015 on Android and July 3, 2015 for the iOS. It was followed up with the release of an updated mobile game, I-Chu Étoile Stage, on April 30, 2020, while the original game was discontinued in July 2020. A port for Nintendo Switch was announced in October 2021, and was released in Japan on November 10, 2022.

Along with the game, the franchise has released several CDs portrayed by the characters in the game, and the success of the game led to several adaptations for the franchise, including stage plays and an anime television series by Lay-duce, which aired from January 6 to March 24, 2021.

Characters[edit]

Pop'N Star[edit]

Momosuke Oikawa (及川桃助, Oikawa Momosuke)
Voiced by: Kazutomi Yamamoto[2]
Kokoro Hanabusa (華房心, Hanabusa Kokoro)
Voiced by: Ayumu Murase[2]
Runa Kagurasaka (神楽坂ルナ, Kagurasuka Runa)
Voiced by: Kōhei Amasaki[2]

RE:BERSERK[edit]

Ban Jūmonji (十文字蛮, Jūmonji Ban)
Voiced by: Yoshiyuki Shimozuma[2]
Eva Armstrong (エヴァ・アームストロング, Evua Amusutorongu)
Voiced by: Hiro Shimono[2]
Mio Yamanobe (山野辺澪, Yamanobe Mio)
Voiced by: Tetsuya Kakihara[2]

Lancelot[edit]

Futami Akabane (赤羽根双海, Akabane Futami)
Voiced by: Yuma Uchida[2]
Issei Todoroki (轟一誠, Todoroki Issei)
Voiced by: Tomoaki Maeno[2]
Takamichi Sanzenin (三千院鷹通, Sanzenin Takamichi)
Voiced by: Yusuke Shirai[2]

Tenjō Tenge[edit]

Aoi Kakitsubata (杜若葵, Kakitsubata Aoi)
Voiced by: Ryōhei Kimura[2]
Toya Honoki (朴木十夜, Hōnoki Jūya)
Voiced by: Kei Minegishi[2]
Tsubaki Rindo (竜胆椿, Rindo Tsubaki)
Voiced by: Yūki Ono[2]
Tatsumi Madarao (斑尾巽, Madarao Tatsumi)
Voiced by: Sōma Saitō[2]

F∞F[edit]

Kanata Minato (湊奏多, Minato Kanata)
Voiced by: Yūichi Iguchi[2]
Seiya Aido (愛童星夜, Aido Seiya)
Voiced by: KENN[2]
Akira Mitsurugi (御剣晃, Mitsurugi Akira)
Voiced by: Toshiyuki Toyonaga[2]

Twinkle Bell[edit]

Mutsuki Kururugi (枢木睦月, Kururugi Mutsuki)
Voiced by: Takashi Kondō[2]
Satsuki Kururugi (枢木皐月, Kururugi Satsuki)
Voiced by: Showtaro Morikubo[2]

I♥B[edit]

Lucas (リュカ, Ryuka)
Voiced by: Yūichirō Umehara[2]
Leon (レオン, Reon)
Voiced by: Toshiki Masuda[2]
Noah (ノア, Noa)
Voiced by: Natsuki Hanae[2]
Li Chaoyang (黎朝陽, Rei Chaoyang)
Voiced by: Junya Enoki[2]
Rabi (ラビ, Rabi)
Voiced by: Naoya Nakanishi[2]

ArS[edit]

Shiki Amabe (海部子規, Amabe Shiki)
Voiced by: Katsufumi Yachi[2]
Akio Tobikura (鳶倉アキヲ, Tobikura Akio)
Voiced by: Atsushi Tamaru[2]
Kyōsuke Momoi (桃井恭介, Momoi Kyōsuke)
Voiced by: Hiroyuki Kagura[2]
Torahiko Kusakabe (日下部虎彦, Kusakabe Torahiko)
Voiced by: Kenji Roa[2]
Hikaru Orihara (折原輝, Orihara Hikaru)
Voiced by: Yoshitsugu Matsuoka[2]
Raku Wakaōji (若王子楽, Wakaōji Raku)
Voiced by: Daisuke Hirakawa[2]

Other characters[edit]

Principal Bear (クマ校長, Kuma Kōchō)
Voiced by: Akio Ōtsuka[2]
Yuzuki Asahina (朝比奈柚希, Asahina Yuzuki)
Voiced by: Megumi Toyoguchi[2]

Media[edit]

Game[edit]

I-Chu is developed by Liber Entertainment and scheduled for launch in June 2015 on the iOS and Android, with pre-registrations opening on May 18, 2015.[1] The game was later released on June 26, 2015 on Android and July 3, 2015 for the iOS.[3] The game included a cast of 42 voice actors and was described as a "love rhythm adventure" game.[1]

A second mobile game titled I-Chu Étoile Stage was originally scheduled to launch in Q3 2019,[4] but after several delays, it launched on April 30, 2020.[5] In June 2020, Liber Entertainment announced they would be discontinuing online services for the original mobile game on July 6, 2020, which would remain playable with all features unlocked until December 13, 2020.[5] A port for Nintendo Switch was announced in October 2021, and was released in Japan on November 10, 2022.[6]

Stage plays[edit]

A stage play adaptation was announced during a fan meeting in 2017.[7] The first stage play, I-Chu the Stage: Stairway to Etoile, ran from August 25–27, 2017 in Osaka and September 6–10, 2017 in Tokyo.[8] The play had a second run from February 23 to March 1, 2018, in Tokyo, under the title I-Chu the Stage: Stairway to Etoile 2018.[9][10] The third stage play, I-Chu the Stage: Rose Ecarlate was announced at the stage play's first fan meeting and ran from April 21–29, 2019 in Tokyo and May 10–12, 2019 in Osaka, with Hiro Isenao directing and writing the script.[11][12][13] A fourth stage play, I-Chu the Stage: Rose Ecarlate Deux, ran from October 10–15, 2019 in Tokyo.[14]

In addition to the stage plays, the cast of the stage plays held concerts while performing in character. The first concert, Live!! I-Chu the Stage: Etincelle took place in Zepp Tokyo on November 25, 2017.[15] The second concert, Live!! I-Chu the Stage: Planete et Fleurs, took place on July 27, 2019 in Tokyo.[16]

Anime[edit]

An anime television series adaptation titled I-Chu: Halfway Through the Idol was announced in April 2019.[4] The series is directed by Hitoshi Nanba and written by Yoshimi Narita, with Mina Ōsawa in charge of character designs, Twin Engine as producer, Lay-duce producing the animation,[17] and Yoshiaki Dewa composing the music. The series aired from January 6 to March 24, 2021 on Tokyo MX and BS11.[2][18] The opening theme song is "Rainbow☆Harmony",[19] and the ending theme song is "Singing! Swinging!"[20] both performed by I-Chu Leaders (アイチュウリーダーズ, Ai Chū Rīdāzu) A special opening theme song, "The Song's Number One Star: The Legend Folklore's Future" (一番星の歌~未来のレジェンド伝説~, "Ichiban Hoshi no Uta ~Mirai no Rejendo Densetsu~") performed by I-Chu (アイチュウ, Ai Chū) was used for episode 1.[21] Crunchyroll licensed the series outside Asia.[22] Muse Communication licensed the series in Southeast Asia and South Asia and is streaming it on their Muse Asia YouTube channel.[23]

No.Title [24][25]Directed by [a]Written by [a]Original air date [26]
1"The Colors of Songs"
Transcription: "Kurūru: Uta no Irodori" (Japanese: couleur ~歌の彩~)
Takurō TsukadaYoshimi NaritaJanuary 6, 2021 (2021-01-06)
2"That Which Is Engraved"
Transcription: "Disuku: Kizamareru Mono" (Japanese: disque ~刻まれるもの~)
Miki SakaibaraYoshimi NaritaJanuary 13, 2021 (2021-01-13)
3"In the Case of an Otokonoko"
Transcription: "Pafōmansu: Otoko no Ko no Baai" (Japanese: performance ~男の娘の場合~)
Takurō TsukadaMisaki MorieJanuary 20, 2021 (2021-01-20)
4"Just as You Are"
Transcription: "Kosuchūmu: Sugao no Mama de" (Japanese: costume ~素顔のままで~)
Noriko HashimotoNaohiro FukushimaJanuary 27, 2021 (2021-01-27)
5"That Which We Wish to Convey"
Transcription: "Sesshon: Tsutaetai Koto" (Japanese: session ~伝えたいこと~)
Hironori AoyagiMisaki MorieFebruary 3, 2021 (2021-02-03)
6"Where I Belong"
Transcription: "Ekippu: Watashi no Ibasho" (Japanese: equipe ~私の居場所~)
Yasutaka YamamotoNaohiro FukushimaFebruary 10, 2021 (2021-02-10)
7"For a Smile"
Transcription: "Jujuman: Egao no Tame ni" (Japanese: jugement ~笑顔のために~)
Miki Sakaibara
Takurō Tsukada
Yoshimi NaritaFebruary 17, 2021 (2021-02-17)
8"Bonds"
Transcription: "Vakānsu: Kizuna" (Japanese: vacance ~キズナ~)
Miki Sakaibara
Takurō Tsukada
Natsuko ImaiFebruary 24, 2021 (2021-02-24)
9"The Lost Color"
Transcription: "Monokurōmu: Ushinawareta Iro" (Japanese: monochrome ~失われた色~)
Yukio KurodaNaohiro FukushimaMarch 3, 2021 (2021-03-03)
10"Back to Life"
Transcription: "Fenikkusu: Saisei" (Japanese: phoenix ~再生~)
Noriko HashimotoYoshimi NaritaMarch 10, 2021 (2021-03-10)
11"The Decisive Battle"
Transcription: "Infini: Kessen" (Japanese: infini ~決戦~)
Tomoe MakinoMisaki MorieMarch 17, 2021 (2021-03-17)
12"Ichu"
Transcription: "Arumoni: Ai Chū" (Japanese: harmonie ~アイチュウ~)
Yasutaka YamamotoYoshimi NaritaMarch 24, 2021 (2021-03-24)

Reception[edit]

Over 10,000 users pre-registered for I-Chu before the game's release.[27] As of 2017, 1 million users were playing the game.[7]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b Information is taken from the ending credits of each episode.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e "アイドルを育てる恋愛リズムアドベンチャー「アイ★チュウ」が6月中旬に配信". 4gamer (in Japanese). April 20, 2015. Retrieved July 5, 2020.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af Mateo, Alex (November 6, 2020). "I★CHU Idol Anime Reveals Promo Video, Visuals, More Staff, January Premiere". Anime News Network. Retrieved November 6, 2020.
  3. ^ "アプリ『アイ★チュウ』1周年の軌跡をたどる!振り返ってみたら、アイチュウたちは天使だと確信した――". Animate (in Japanese). July 1, 2016. Retrieved July 5, 2020.
  4. ^ a b Hodgkins, Crystalyn (April 14, 2019). "I★CHU Idol Smartphone Game Gets TV Anime". Anime News Network. Retrieved July 5, 2020.
  5. ^ a b Mateo, Alex (June 2, 2020). "1st I★CHU Idol Smartphone Game Ends Online Service, Continues Offline on July 6". Anime News Network. Retrieved July 5, 2020.
  6. ^ "Otome visual novel / rhythm game I-Chu announced for Switch". Gematsu. Retrieved October 20, 2021.
  7. ^ a b "『アイ★チュウ』舞台化や2ndアルバム情報もあったリアルイベントまとめ". Famitsu (in Japanese). January 30, 2017. Retrieved July 5, 2020.
  8. ^ "ゲーム「アイ★チュウ」舞台版に飯山裕太ら、総勢16人のビジュアルお披露目". Natalie (in Japanese). March 27, 2017. Retrieved July 5, 2020.
  9. ^ "「アイ★チュウ」新キャストの川井雅弘&須永風汰らが池袋でパフォーマンス". Natalie (in Japanese). January 26, 2018. Retrieved July 5, 2020.
  10. ^ "「アイ★チュウ2018」優勝目指してパフォーマンス対決!結果は投票で決定". Natalie (in Japanese). February 23, 2018. Retrieved July 5, 2020.
  11. ^ "「アイ★チュウ」新作に吉岡佑らが登場、初のファンミーティングも開催決定". Natalie (in Japanese). September 27, 2018. Retrieved July 5, 2020.
  12. ^ "「アイ★チュウ」新作のキービジュアル公開、石渡真修ら日替わりゲストも". Natalie (in Japanese). December 30, 2018. Retrieved July 5, 2020.
  13. ^ "アイドルたちの競演「アイ★チュウ」第3弾開幕!観客の"ガチ投票"も". Natalie (in Japanese). April 21, 2019. Retrieved July 5, 2020.
  14. ^ "川井雅弘らがパワーアップしたステージを届ける「アイ★チュウ」スタート". Natalie (in Japanese). October 11, 2019. Retrieved July 5, 2020.
  15. ^ "「アイ★チュウ」2018年2月に新作上演決定、飯山裕太ら出演のライブ公演も". Natalie (in Japanese). September 11, 2017. Retrieved July 5, 2020.
  16. ^ "「アイ★チュウ」のライブイベント「Planete et Fleurs」開催決定". Natalie (in Japanese). May 12, 2019. Retrieved July 5, 2020.
  17. ^ Hodgkins, Crystalyn (November 9, 2019). "I★CHU Idol Anime Reveals Promo Video, Teaser Visual, Staff". Anime News Network. Retrieved July 5, 2020.
  18. ^ Mateo, Alex (December 4, 2020). "I★CHU Idol Anime Reveals 2nd Promo Video, More Staff, January 6 Premiere". Anime News Network. Retrieved December 4, 2020.
  19. ^ "Nyūsu | Terebi Anime "Ai★Chū"" NEWS | TVアニメ『アイ★チュウ』 [News | TV Anime "I★CHU"]. etoile-anime.jp (in Japanese). Archived from the original on January 6, 2021. Retrieved January 6, 2021.
  20. ^ "Nyūsu | Terebi Anime "Ai★Chū"" NEWS | TVアニメ『アイ★チュウ』 [News | TV Anime "I★CHU"]. etoile-anime.jp (in Japanese). Retrieved January 6, 2021.
  21. ^ "Nyūsu | Terebi Anime "Ai★Chū"" NEWS | TVアニメ『アイ★チュウ』 [News | TV Anime "I★CHU"]. etoile-anime.jp (in Japanese). Archived from the original on January 6, 2021. Retrieved January 6, 2021.
  22. ^ "FINAL UPDATE: Crunchyroll Announces Winter 2021 Anime Lineup! (1/5)". Crunchyroll. January 5, 2021. Retrieved January 6, 2021.
  23. ^ Hazra, Adriana (January 5, 2021). "Muse Asia Announces Winter 2021 Simulcast Schedule". Anime News Network. Retrieved January 18, 2021.
  24. ^ "Kakuwa Jōhō|Ai★Chū|Tōkyō Emu Ekkusu" 各話情報|アイ☆チュウ|TOKYO MX [Each Episode Information|I★CHU|Tokyo MX]. Tokyo MX (in Japanese). Archived from the original on January 6, 2021. Retrieved January 6, 2021.
  25. ^ "I★CHU - Watch on Crunchyroll". Crunchyroll. Archived from the original on January 6, 2021. Retrieved January 6, 2021.
  26. ^ "On'ea | Terebi Anime "Ai★Chū"" ONAIR | TVアニメ『アイ★チュウ』 [On Air | TV Anime "I★CHU"]. etoile-anime.jp (in Japanese). Archived from the original on December 4, 2020. Retrieved December 4, 2020.
  27. ^ "「アイ★チュウ」,事前登録者数1万人を達成。特典が増量". 4gamer (in Japanese). May 18, 2015. Retrieved July 5, 2020.

External links[edit]