Overlord (novel series)

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. Sixteen volumes have been published since July 2012. 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 since 2016.

Overlord
Cover art of the first volume
オーバーロード
(Ōbārōdo)
Genre
Novel series
Written byKugane Maruyama
Published by
Original runMay 9, 2010March 30, 2012
Light novel
Written byKugane Maruyama
Illustrated byso-bin
Published byEnterbrain
English publisher
DemographicMale
Original runJuly 30, 2012 – present
Volumes16
Manga
Written bySatoshi Ōshio
Illustrated byHugin Miyama
Published byKadokawa Shoten
English publisher
  • NA: Yen Press
MagazineComp Ace
DemographicSeinen
Original runNovember 26, 2014 – present
Volumes19
Anime television series
Directed byNaoyuki Itō
Produced by
  • Kazufumi Kikushima
  • Satoshi Fukao
  • Noritomo Isogai
  • Yūki Yoshida
  • Shō Tanaka (I)
  • Toyokazu Nakahigashi (II–IV)
Written byYukie Sugawara
Music byShūji Katayama (Team-MAX)
StudioMadhouse
Licensed byCrunchyroll[a]
Original networkAT-X, Tokyo MX, Sun TV, KBS, TV Aichi, BS11, MBS
Original run July 7, 2015 September 27, 2022
Episodes52 (List of episodes)
Original video animation
Directed byMinoru Ashina
StudioStudio Puyukai
Licensed by
ReleasedSeptember 30, 2016
Original net animation
Overlord: Ple Ple Pleiades
Directed byMinoru Ashina
Produced byMinoru Ashina
StudioStudio Puyukai
Released September 25, 2015 – present
Episodes44 (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
Licensed byCrunchyroll[a]
Released
  • February 25, 2017 (Part 1)
  • March 11, 2017 (Part 2)
Runtime
  • 117 minutes (part 1)[3]
  • 108 minutes (part 2)[4]
icon Anime and manga portal

The novel has been adapted into an anime television series adaptation by Madhouse, consisting of four seasons with thirteen episodes each, with the first season airing from July to September 2015. Two compilation anime films recapping the events from the first season were released in Japan in February and March 2017, respectively. The second season ran from January to April 2018, the third season ran from July to October 2018, and the fourth season ran from July to September 2022. An anime film has been announced.

Plot edit

In 2126, a Full-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 Lich "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 discovers that the game hasn't vanished; instead, it appears as if Nazarick has been transported to another world altogether and its various NPCs becoming actual living beings. 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 log out. With no other option, Momonga sets out to learn if any players like himself are in this new world. 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.

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. The first volume was released on July 30, 2012.[5] As of July 29, 2022, sixteen volumes have been released.[6] In the afterword in the second part of the sixteenth volume, it was announced that the series is set to end with its eighteenth volume.[7]

Yen Press announced its license to the series in October 2015 for North America and began publishing the novels in English,[8] with the first volume releasing on May 24, 2016.[9]

No. Title Original release date English release date
1The Undead King
Fushisha no Ō
(不死者の王)
July 30, 2012[5]
978-4-04-728152-3
May 24, 2016[9]
978-0-316-27224-7
2The Dark Warrior
Shikkoku no Senshi
(漆黒の戦士)
November 30, 2012[10]
978-4-04-728451-7
September 27, 2016[11]
978-0-316-36391-4
3The Bloody Valkyrie
Senketsu no Ikusa Otome
(鮮血の戦乙女)
March 30, 2013[12]
978-4-04-728689-4
January 24, 2017[13]
978-0-316-36393-8
4The Lizardman Heroes
Rizādoman no Yūsha-tachi
(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
5The Men of the Kingdom Part I
Ōkoku no Otoko-tachi (Jō)
(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
6The Men of the Kingdom Part II
Ōkoku no Otoko-tachi (Ge)
(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
7The Invaders of the Great Tomb
Daifunbo no Shinnyūsha
(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
8The Two Leaders
Futari no Shidōsha
(二人の指導者)
December 26, 2014[22]
978-4-04-730084-2
September 18, 2018[23]
978-0-316-39884-8
9The Caster of Destruction
Hagun no Mahō Eishōsha
(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
10The Ruler of Conspiracy
Bōryaku no Tōchisha
(謀略の統治者)
May 30, 2016[26]
978-4-04-734089-3
May 21, 2019[27]
978-0-316-44498-9
11The Dwarven Crafter
Yama Kobito no Kōshō
(山小人の工匠)
September 30, 2016[28]
978-4-04-734230-9
October 29, 2019[29]
978-0-316-44501-6
12The Paladin of the Sacred Kingdom Part I
Sei Ōkoku no Sei Kishi (Jō)
(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
13The Paladin of the Sacred Kingdom Part II
Sei Ōkoku no Sei Kishi (Ge)
(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
14The Witch of the Doomed Kingdom
Mekkoku no Majo
(滅国の魔女)
March 12, 2020[34]
978-4-04-735885-0
June 28, 2022[35]
978-1-975-32380-6
15The Half-Elf Demigod Part I
Han Mori Yōsei no Shinjin (Jō)
(半森妖精の神人 [上])
June 30, 2022[36]
978-4-047-36555-1
June 28, 2022[37]
978-1-975-36056-6
16The Half-Elf Demigod Part II
Han Mori Yōsei no Shinjin (Ge)
(半森妖精の神人 [下])
July 29, 2022[6]
978-4-047-36556-8
July 18, 2023[38]
978-1-975-36780-0

Manga edit

A manga adaptation by Satoshi Ōshio, illustrated Hugin Miyama, was serialized in Kadokawa Shoten's manga magazine Comp Ace from November 26, 2014,[1] to May 25, 2023.[39]

A sequel manga series, titled Overlord New World, illustrated by Matsuki, is set to start in the same magazine on April 26, 2024.[40]

No. Original release date Original ISBN English release date English ISBN
1 June 26, 2015[41]978-4-04-103071-4June 28, 2016[42]978-0-316-27227-8
2 July 25, 2015[43]978-4-04-103072-1September 27, 2016[44]978-0-316-39766-7
3 December 26, 2015[45]978-4-04-103857-4December 13, 2016[46]978-0-316-43425-6
4 June 25, 2016[47]978-4-04-104399-8October 31, 2017[48]978-0-316-47643-0
5 August 26, 2016[49]978-4-04-104400-1January 23, 2018[50]978-0-316-51724-9
6 December 26, 2016[51]978-4-04-104679-1April 17, 2018[52]978-0-316-51727-0
7 May 24, 2017[53]978-4-04-105764-3July 24, 2018[54]978-1-9753-5335-3
8 December 26, 2017[55]978-4-04-106389-7November 13, 2018[56]978-1-9753-2813-9
9 April 26, 2018[57]978-4-04-106390-3February 19, 2019[58]978-1-9753-8284-1
10 July 26, 2018[59]978-4-04-107168-7May 21, 2019[60]978-1-9753-5739-9
11 February 26, 2019[61]978-4-04-107896-9September 24, 2019[62]978-1-9753-3230-3
12 September 24, 2019[63]978-4-04-108688-9May 19, 2020[64]978-1-9753-1296-1
13 March 24, 2020[65]978-4-04-108689-6June 1, 2021[66]978-1-9753-2309-7
14 November 25, 2020[67]978-4-04-110815-4November 16, 2021[68]978-1-9753-2335-6
15 July 26, 2021[69]978-4-04-111589-3August 23, 2022[70]978-1-9753-4485-6
16 January 26, 2022[71]978-4-04-111590-9November 22, 2022[72]978-1-97-535994-2
17 June 24, 2022[73]978-4-04-112615-8May 23, 2023[74]978-1-97-536640-7
18 March 25, 2023[75]978-4-04-113501-3February 20, 2024[76]978-1-97-537954-4
19 December 26, 2023[77]978-4-04-114353-7October 15, 2024[78]979-8-85-540381-7

Anime edit

A 13-episode anime television series adaptation by Madhouse aired between July 7 and September 29, 2015.[79] 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.[80] Two compilation films acting as a recap to the anime television series were released in 2017;[81] 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,[82] 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.[83][84]

A second season was announced at film screenings of the second compilation film.[85] It premiered on January 9, 2018.[86][87] It ran for a total of 13 episodes. Outside of Asia, Funimation has licensed the second season for a simuldub.[88] Following Sony's acquisition of Crunchyroll, the series was moved to Crunchyroll.[89] In South and Southeast Asia, Medialink holds the rights to the series.[90] The opening theme is "Go Cry Go" by OxT and the ending theme is "Hydra" by Myth & Roid.[91] The second season of the anime adaptation covers light novel volumes 4 to 6.

A third season premiered on July 10, 2018.[92][93][94] The opening theme is "VORACITY" by Myth & Roid, and the ending theme song is "Silent Solitude" by OxT.[95][92] With 13 episodes as with the previous seasons, the third season of the anime adaptation covers 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 returned to reprise their roles for the fourth season,[96] which aired from July 5 to September 27, 2022.[97] The opening theme is "HOLLOW HUNGER" by OxT, and the ending theme is "No Man's Dawn" by Mayu Maeshima.[98] On July 18, 2022, Crunchyroll announced an English dub for the fourth season, which began streaming on July 19.[99] The fourth season covers light novel volumes 10, 11 and 14, while the movie adapts volumes 12 and 13.

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.

Games edit

A mobile game Mass for the Dead was launched in late 2019 in Japan, with a global (English) version launched in early 2020.[100] It received poor reviews, with reviewers noting it was rather simple and did not offer anything new compared to many other similar gacha games.[101] The global version has been shut down as of March 31, 2021.[102][103]

A Metroidvania game titled Overlord: Escape from Nazarick was announced on December 17, 2021, for Nintendo Switch and PC via Steam[104] and was released on June 16, 2022.[105]

Reception edit

By 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. By 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.[106] By September 18, 2015, Overlord light novel and manga has over 2 million copies in circulation.[107] By May 2016, the Overlord light novel series had 2.5 million copies in print.[108] Overlord was the top-selling light novel series of 2015.[109] By April 2018, the light novel and manga combined had over 7 million copies in print.[110] By December 2021, the light novel and manga combined had over 11 million copies in circulation.[111]

The light novel ranked first in 2017 in Takarajimasha's annual light novel guide book Kono Light Novel ga Sugoi!, in the tankōbon category.[112] It ranked fourth in 2018.[113]

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."[114]

See also edit

Notes edit

  1. ^ a b c Formerly known as Funimation.

References edit

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