[HiddenGem] Game yaru kara 100-en Kashite! by Zawa & Nakano

When retro arcade meets office romance.

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Game yaru kara 100-en Kashite! (Lend me ¥100 so I can play a game) by Nakano (art) & Zawa (story) is a cute romance/slice-of-life with retro game themes thrown in. Sugita is a handsome, skilled, newcomer at a company who gets along with everyone…. everyone except for the petite assistant manager, Yumihara, who tend to be very strict on him.

One day during his lunch break, Sugita finds a small, secluded, coffee shop named “Dead Copy” which features special tables dedicated for playing retro games. To his surprise, he also spots Yumihara completely immersed in her game like a child; opposite of the strict attitude she shows back at the office. The story follows Sugita and Yumihara’s daily encounters at the arcade cafe, and how the two’s relationship develop through their various interactions.

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An interesting spin on the whole office-romance genre, 100-en Kashite is a fun, lighthearted slice-of-life, with lovable characters. The rich variety of expressions portrayed by the two main cast is a joy to watch.

Yumihara is a short, but very talented business woman with a bit of a inferiority complex due to her small figure. While she is professional at work, she has a child-like passion for 8-bit games and goes into long monologues whenever she introduces a new game.

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Our main character on the other hand, is a departure from your usual socially awkward manga heroes. Sugita is confident, popular, and isn’t afraid to tease and flirt with his superior (Yumihara). His outgoing personality helps keep the story going, and it’s a joy to see him bring out different expressions out of Yumihara.

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The various retro games introduced by the series is also a strong part of its appeal. Rather than featuring actual classic games, all the games introduced in this series are “Dead Copy” versions: copy-cat versions of the popular games. From “PacGirl” where PacMan is replaces with girl chasing after a boy to “Drunkey Kong” where Donkey Kong throws barrels of beer also gets drunk in the process, the parodies to the age-old classics are quite fun to read.

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Some of the series’ best moments comes from the way it uses these games as a way for the characters express their feelings and internal struggles. While playing the previous mentioned “PacGirl”, Yumihara sees the way PacGirl has to chase the Prince while getting running away from unwanted men (enemies),  as a reflection of how woman always has to struggle from unwanted approaches while the ones they are really interested in keep running away.

These moments where the characters connect with the games they are playing help us get deeper understanding of the characters, and also allow the characters to develop their relationship more by getting a peek at their true feelings.

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Game Yaru kara 100-en Kashite! (ゲームやるから100円貸して!) 

  • Author: Zawa (story) & Nakano (art)
  • Genre: Romance, office-life, comedy, arcade game
  • Serialized In: Young Ace Up
  • Status: Ongoing (Manga: ch.19+)   | Scanlation: NONE

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