#1 Video games are cool
Gamers! is an anime about video games made for gamers, by gamers. It’s a celebration of the medium that tells the story of several high school students with complicated lives, who are all brought together and form new friendships through their shared love of video games.
Keita Amano is an introverted geek who is deeply passionate about gaming, but who is such a recluse that he can’t share that love with other gamers. He avoids communities and is hesitant to accept people’s friendship, which isn’t helped by his awkward nature making him appear exceptionally rude. Most of the story centers around the efforts of various people who are trying to help him break out of his shell, even if that sometimes means having to get a little forceful with the guy.
Yasuku Uehara is one such a friend. He’s a popular guy at school who used to be quite like Keita, until he gave up on gaming as a passion and reworked his image to get rid of his bullies. Keita helps him rediscover gaming, so in return Yasuku wants to help Keita bond with other people. He is also helped by Karen Tendo, who very dearly wants Keita to join the school’s official Game Club, as well as Chiaki Hoshinomori, an indie games developer who quickly becomes Keita’s nemesis due to them being on opposing sides of too many touchy gaming topics.
The idea of having video games play a central role in the narrative is made more effective by how expertly Gamers! presents video games. The show takes every opportunity it can get to throw in references to games both famous and obscure, sometimes even featuring footage from real video games. Also noteworthy is the anime’s script, which is loaded with geek lingo and nerdy jokes. While a bit too cheesy at times, it’s a clear display that the people who made the show knew what they were talking about and were passionate about the subject.
#2 Romcom hell
If you can’t handle love triangles or romantic misunderstandings, then skip this anime altogether. Gamers! is a romantic comedy through and through, with some of the densest characters imaginable.
Actually, it’s probably safer to call it a love pentagon, but even that might be cutting it short in some cases. This is all set into motion when Tasuku begins pushing Keita to befriend female gamers, which leads his own girlfriend to think that Tasuku is cheating on her. Keita’s attempts to explain the situation to her are then also misinterpreted as them dating behind Tasuku’s back, and from there the situation descends into complete chaos as everybody involved begins to act under wild misassumptions.
It’s painful at times watching these complete idiots, some of which are genuinely in love with each other, utterly misinterpret situations and make the dumbest choices they could possibly make. Painful, but also absolutely hilarious.
#3 Surprising animation quality
Gamers! is a show that doesn’t immediately stand out. Its characters look nice, the artstyle is what you’d expect from a modern anime; it looks very normal. However, if you are willing to look a little deeper, then Gamers! has a lot to offer in regards to its presentation.
Characters are expressive and get to wear different, highly-detailed outfits, the backgrounds are teeming with decorations, and even the extras weren’t skimped out on, which is far more than I’d usually ask from a minor seasonal anime. The few times where Gamers! dares to experiment with the visual style also pay off tremendously. Episode 6 in particular was so creative and hilarious that the first thing I did after finishing the show was rewatch that specific episode.