Overlord (novel series)

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Overlord
Overlord novel.jpg
Cover art of the first volume
オーバーロード
(Ōbārōdo)
GenreDark fantasy,[1] black comedy, isekai[2]
Novel series
Written byKugane Maruyama
Published byArkadia
Shōsetsuka ni Narō
Original run2010 – present
Light novel
Written byKugane Maruyama
Illustrated byso-bin
Published byEnterbrain
English publisher
DemographicMale
Original runJuly 30, 2012 – present
Volumes14 (List of volumes)
Manga
Written bySatoshi Ōshio
Illustrated byHugin Miyama
Published byKadokawa Shoten
English publisher
MagazineComp Ace
DemographicSeinen
Original runNovember 26, 2014 – present
Volumes15 (List of volumes)
Anime television series
Directed byNaoyuki Itō
Produced by
  • Kazufumi Kikushima
  • Satoshi Fukao
  • Noritomo Isogai
  • Yuki Yoshida
  • Shō Tanaka (#1–13)
  • Toyokazu Nakahigashi (#14–39)
Written byYukie Sugawara
Music byShūji Katayama (Team-MAX)
StudioMadhouse
Licensed byFunimation[a]
Original networkAT-X, Tokyo MX, Sun TV, KBS, TV Aichi, BS11, MBS
Original run July 7, 2015 – present
Episodes39 (List of episodes)
Original video animation
Directed byMinoru Ashina
StudioStudio Puyukai
Licensed byFunimation
ReleasedSeptember 30, 2016
Episodes1
Original net animation
Overlord: Ple Ple Pleiades
Directed byMinoru Ashina
Produced byMinoru Ashina
StudioStudio Puyukai
Released September 25, 2015 October 2, 2018
Episodes34 (List of episodes)
Anime film series
Overlord: The Undead King
Overlord: The Dark Warrior
Directed byNaoyuki Itō
Written byYukie Sugawara
Music byShūji Katayama (Team-MAX)
StudioMadhouse
ReleasedFebruary 25, 2017 (Part 1)
March 11, 2017 (Part 2)
Runtime117 minutes (Part 1)[3]
108 minutes (Part 2)[4]
Wikipe-tan face.svg Anime and manga portal

Overlord (Japanese: オーバーロード, Hepburn: Ōbārōdo) is a Japanese light novel series written by Kugane Maruyama and illustrated by so-bin. It began serialization online in 2010, before being acquired by Enterbrain. Fourteen volumes have been published since July 30, 2012. The author has stated in 2020 that the series will end after 17 novels. A manga adaptation by Satoshi Ōshio, with art by Hugin Miyama, began serialization in Kadokawa Shoten's manga magazine Comp Ace from November 26, 2014. Both the light novels and the manga are licensed in North America by Yen Press, with a release date of November 8, 2016.

The anime television series adaptation by Madhouse consists of 3 seasons with 13 episodes each, with the first season airing from July 7 to September 29, 2015. Two compilation anime films recapping the events from the first season were released in Japan on February 25, 2017, and March 11, 2017, respectively. The second season ran from January 9 to April 3, 2018, and the third season ran from July 10 to October 2, 2018. A fourth season and an anime film have been announced.

Plot[edit]

In the year 2126, a Dive Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game or DMMORPG called YGGDRASIL was released, standing out among all other DMMORPGs due to its unusually high ability for the player to interact with the game. After an intense twelve-year run, the game servers are about to be shut down. Within the game exists a guild, Ainz Ooal Gown, once consisting of 41 members and credited as one of the strongest guilds in the game. Now only four of the members remain, the other 37 having quit the game, and only one, a skeletal "Overlord" character named Momonga, continues to play as the guild leader, maintaining their headquarters in The Great Tomb of Nazarick. In the minutes before the shutdown he invites the remaining guild members, but of those only one appears and only for a short while before leaving. While saddened by this, he accepts the reality that his friends have their other lives to take care of and decides to stay logged in until the servers shut down.

When the shut-down time arrives, Momonga finds that the game hasn't vanished; instead, it appears as if Nazarick has been transported to another reality altogether along with its various NPCs gaining sentience. Momonga has been trapped in the form of his game avatar, leaving him unable to use the normal player functions such as General Message, or even to log out. With no other option, Momonga sets out to learn if anyone from the real world is also in this new world with him. Taking on the name of the guild, Ainz Ooal Gown, as a message to any other remaining players, Momonga begins exploring the world in an attempt to figure out what has happened while searching for anyone or anything that could help him solve this mystery, while ensuring the safety of Nazarick. Ainz Ooal Gown seems to have modifications made to his behavior by in-game mechanics, because he demonstrates no moral qualms with killing and other actions that are taboo in the real world. This is a story about the psychology of a creature beyond ethical concerns with near-limitless power.

Media[edit]

Light novels[edit]

The light novel series written by Maruyama, with illustrations by so-bin, began its serialization online in 2010 via the novel publishing website Arcadia. It was also uploaded to the novel publishing website Shōsetsuka ni Narō in 2012, prior to Enterbrain's acquisition. As of September 30, 2017, the series has been published by Enterbrain in thirteen volumes, with the first volume releasing on July 30, 2012,[5] and the fourteenth volume releasing on March 13, 2020. Yen Press announced its license to the series in October 2015 for North America and began publishing the novels in English,[6] with the first volume releasing on May 24, 2016.[7]

No. Title Original release date English release date
1Overlord 1: The Undead King
Ōbārōdo 1: Fushisha no Ō
(オーバーロード1 不死者の王)
July 30, 2012[8]
978-4-04-728152-3
May 24, 2016[9]
978-0-316-27224-7
2Overlord 2: The Dark Warrior
Ōbārōdo 2: Shikkoku no Senshi
(オーバーロード2 漆黒の戦士)
November 30, 2012[10]
978-4-04-728451-7
September 27, 2016[11]
978-0-316-36391-4
3Overlord 3: The Bloody Valkyrie
Ōbārōdo 3: Senketsu no Ikusa Otome
(オーバーロード3 鮮血の戦乙女)
March 30, 2013[12]
978-4-04-728689-4
January 24, 2017[13]
978-0-316-36393-8
4Overlord 4: The Lizard Man Heroes
Ōbārōdo 4: Rizādoman no Yūsha-tachi
(オーバーロード4 蜥蜴人の勇者たち)
July 31, 2013[14]
978-4-04-728953-6
May 23, 2017[15]
978-0-316-39759-9
5Overlord 5: The Men of the Kingdom (Part 1)
Ōbārōdo 5: Ōkoku no Otoko-tachi (Jō)
(オーバーロード5 王国の漢たち [上])
December 28, 2013[16]
978-4-04-729259-8
September 19, 2017[17]
978-0-316-39761-2
6Overlord 6: The Men of the Kingdom (Part 2)
Ōbārōdo 6: Ōkoku no Otoko-tachi (Ge)
(オーバーロード6 王国の漢たち [下])
January 31, 2014[18]
978-4-04-729356-4
January 1, 2018[19]
978-0-316-39879-4
7Overlord 7: The Invaders of the Large Tomb
Ōbārōdo 7: Daifunbo no Shinnyūsha
(オーバーロード7 大墳墓の侵入者)
August 30, 2014[20]
978-4-04-729809-5
May 22, 2018[21]
978-0-316-39881-7
8Overlord 8: The Two Leaders
Ōbārōdo 8: Futari no Shidōsha
(オーバーロード8 二人の指導者)
December 26, 2014[22]
978-4-04-730084-2
September 18, 2018[23]
978-0-316-39884-8
9Overlord 9: The Magic Caster of Destroy
Ōbārōdo 9: Hagun no Mahō Eishōsha
(オーバーロード9 破軍の魔法詠唱者)
June 29, 2015[24]
978-4-04-730473-4
January 22, 2019[25]
978-0-316-39886-2
10Overlord 10: The Ruler of Conspiracy
Ōbārōdo 10: Bōryaku no Tōchisha
(オーバーロード10 謀略の統治者)
May 30, 2016[26]
978-4-04-734089-3
May 21, 2019[27]
978-0-316-44498-9
11Overlord 11: The Craftsman of Dwarf
Ōbārōdo 11: Yama Kobito no Kōshō
(オーバーロード11 山小人の工匠)
September 30, 2016[28]
978-4-04-734230-9
October 29, 2019[29]
978-0-316-44501-6
12Overlord 12: The Paladin of the Holy Kingdom (Part 1)
Ōbārōdo 12: Sei Ōkoku no Sei Kishi (Jō)
(オーバーロード12 聖王国の聖騎士 [上])
September 30, 2017[30]
978-4-04-734845-5
June 23, 2020[31]
978-1-975-30806-3
13Overlord 13: The Paladin of the Holy Kingdom (Part 2)
Ōbārōdo 13: Sei Ōkoku no Sei Kishi (Ge)
(オーバーロード13 聖王国の聖騎士 [下])
April 27, 2018[32]
978-4-04-734947-6
June 1, 2021[33]
978-1-975-31153-7
14Overlord 14: The Witch of the Falling Kingdom
Ōbārōdo 14: Mekkoku no Majo
(オーバーロード14 滅国の魔女)
March 12, 2020[34]
978-4-04-735885-0
TBA
15Overlord 15: The Half Wood Elf God-kin
Ōbārōdo 15: Han Mori Yōsei no Shinjin
(オーバーロード15半森妖精の神人)
TBATBA

Manga[edit]

A manga adaptation by Satoshi Ōshio , with art by Hugin Miyama, began serialization in Kadokawa Shoten's manga magazine Comp Ace from November 26, 2014.[1]

No. Original release date Original ISBN English release date English ISBN
1 June 26, 2015[35]978-4-04-103071-4June 28, 2016[36]978-0-316-27227-8
2 July 25, 2015[37]978-4-04-103072-1September 27, 2016[38]978-0-316-39766-7
3 December 26, 2015[39]978-4-04-103857-4December 13, 2016[40]978-0-316-43425-6
4 June 25, 2016[41]978-4-04-104399-8October 31, 2017[42]978-0-316-47643-0
5 August 26, 2016[43]978-4-04-104400-1January 23, 2018[44]978-0-316-51724-9
6 December 26, 2016[45]978-4-04-104679-1April 17, 2018[46]978-0-316-51727-0
7 May 24, 2017[47]978-4-04-105764-3July 24, 2018[48]978-1-9753-5335-3
8 December 26, 2017[49]978-4-04-106389-7November 13, 2018[50]978-1-9753-2813-9
9 April 26, 2018[51]978-4-04-106390-3February 19, 2019[52]978-1-9753-8284-1
10 July 26, 2018[53]978-4-04-107168-7May 21, 2019[54]978-1-9753-5739-9
11 February 26, 2019[55]978-4-04-107896-9September 24, 2019[56]978-1-9753-3230-3
12 September 24, 2019[57]978-4-04-108688-9May 19, 2020[58]978-1-9753-1296-1
13 March 24, 2020[59]978-4-04-108689-6June 1, 2021[60]978-1-9753-2309-7
14 November 25, 2020[61]978-4-04-110815-4November 16, 2021[62]978-1-9753-2335-6
15 July 26, 2021[63]978-4-04-111589-3

Anime[edit]

A 13-episode anime television series adaptation by Madhouse aired between July 7 and September 29, 2015.[64] The opening theme is "Clattanoia" by OxT, and the ending theme is "L.L.L." by Myth & Roid. Both are bands of the musician Tom-H@ck. The anime adaptation covers light novel volumes 1 to 3. A 30-minute original video animation was bundled with the eleventh limited edition volume of the light novel series, which was released on September 30, 2016.[65] Two compilation films acting as a recap to the anime television series were released in 2017;[66] the first compilation film, titled Overlord: The Undead King (オーバーロード 不死者の王, Ōbārōdo: Fushisha no Ō), was released on February 25, 2017,[67] while the second compilation film, titled Overlord: The Dark Warrior (オーバーロード 漆黒の戦士, Ōbārōdo: Shikkoku no Senshi), was released on March 11, 2017. The films' theme song, titled "Crazy Scary Holy Fantasy", was performed by Myth & Roid.[68][69]

A second season was announced at film screenings of the second compilation film.[70] It premiered on January 9, 2018.[71][72] It ran for a total of 13 episodes. Outside of Asia, Funimation has licensed the second season for a simuldub.[73] In South and Southeast Asia, Medialink holds the rights to the series.[74] The opening theme is "Go Cry Go" by OxT and the ending theme is "Hydra" by Myth & Roid.[75] The second season of the anime adaptation covers light novel volumes 4 to 6.

A third season premiered on July 10, 2018.[76][77][78] The opening theme is "VORACITY" by Myth & Roid, and the ending theme song is "Silent Solitude" by OxT.[79][76] With 13 episodes as with the previous seasons, the third season of the anime adaptation covered light novel volumes 7 to 9.

On May 8, 2021, a fourth season and an anime film were announced, with the film covering the Holy Kingdom Arc of the series. The staff and cast members are returning to reprise their roles for the fourth season.[80]

A comedy crossover anime, Isekai Quartet featured characters from Overlord in a Chibi style, much like the OVA. It also featured characters from the light novel series KonoSuba, Re:Zero − Starting Life in Another World, and The Saga of Tanya the Evil, all published by Kadokawa Corporation. The anime began airing on April 9, 2019.

Game[edit]

A mobile game Mass for the Dead was launched in late 2019 in Japan, with a global (English) version launched in early 2020.[81] It received poor reviews, with reviewers noting it was rather simple and did not offer anything new compared to many other similar gacha games.[82][83] The global version has been shut down as of March 31, 2021.[84][85]

Reception[edit]

In June 2015, prior to the release of the anime and manga, the light novel series had about 600,000 copies in print in Japan with eight volumes. By August 1, 2015, the light novel and manga series had a total of 1 million copies in circulation in Japan. On August 4, a 600,000-copy reprint of the novels was announced. As of August 20, 2015, the nine-volume Overlord light novel series and two-volume manga series have, together, more than 1.5 million copies in circulation in Japan.[86] As of September 18, 2015, Overlord light novel and manga has over 2 million copies in circulation.[87] As of May 2016, the Overlord light novel series had 2.5 million copies in print.[88] Overlord has since been named the top-selling light novel series of 2015.[89] As of April 2018, the light novel and manga combined had over 7 million copies in print.[90]

The light novel ranked first in 2017 in Takarajimasha's annual light novel guide book Kono Light Novel ga Sugoi!, in the tankōbon category.[91] It ranked fourth in 2018.[92]

In reviewing the anime adaptation, Kotaku called the Overlord anime a "magnificent power fantasy" which "brings up a very relatable theme for anyone who has played an MMORPG before."[93]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Although Funimation holds the master license to the series in Australasia, Europe, and North America, Funimation only directly handles distribution in North America while Madman Entertainment distributes in Australia and New Zealand, Funimation UK in Great Britain and Wakanim in Europe and Quebec.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Cardine, Kyle (October 25, 2014). "Over Lord Fantasy RPG Light Novels Gets Manga". Anime News Network. Retrieved October 25, 2014.
  2. ^ Hodgkins, Crystalyn (October 6, 2018). "New Isekai Quartet Anime Project Crosses Over Overlord, Re:Zero, Tanya, Konosuba Franchises". Anime News Network. Retrieved December 9, 2018.
  3. ^ 劇場版総集編 オーバーロード 不死者の王 (2017). allcinema (in Japanese). Stingray. Retrieved March 11, 2017.
  4. ^ 劇場版総集編 オーバーロード 漆黒の英雄 (2017). allcinema (in Japanese). Stingray. Retrieved March 11, 2017.
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