The logo for the Japanese version of Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS.
|Anime television series|
|Directed by||Masahiro Hosoda (ep. 1-13)|
Katsuya Asano (ep. 14-present)
|Written by||Shin Yoshida|
|Music by||Shinkichi Mitsumune|
|Original network||TV Tokyo|
|Original run||- present|
Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS (Japanese: VRAINS() Hepburn: Y?-Gi-? Vureinzu) is a Japanese anime series animated by Gallop. It is the fifth spin-off anime series in Kazuki Takahashi's Yu-Gi-Oh! franchise that succeeds Yu-Gi-Oh! Arc-V. It is the sixth Yu-Gi-Oh! anime series. It began airing in Japan on May 10, 2017. It is being simulcast outside of Asia by Crunchyroll courtesy of 4K Media Inc. which also handles the English dub distribution.
In a place known as Den City, thousands of duelists take part in a virtual reality space known as LINK VRAINS, created by SOL Technologies, where users can create unique avatars and participate in games of Duel Monsters with each other. As a mysterious hacker organization known as the Knights of Hanoi threatens this world, a high-school student and hacking genius named Yusaku Fujiki battles against them under the guise of Playmaker. Both the Knights and SOL Technologies are also after a peculiar self-aware artificial intelligence program, who holds the key to a secret area inside the network named the Cyberse World, which the Knights of Hanoi seek to destroy. As the series begins, Yusaku sees the chance to capture this AI, which he names Ai, who sets off a digital maelstrom in LINK VRAINS known as the Data Storm. As the appearance of this storm gives birth to Speed Duels, in which duelists surf the wind as they duel, Yusaku battles against Hanoi in order to uncover the truth concerning an incident that happened to him many years ago.
Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS was first announced on December 16, 2016. It began airing on TV Tokyo in Japan on May 10, 2017. The series is being directed by Masahiro Hosoda at Studio Gallop with screenplay by Shin Yoshida and character design by Ken'ichi Hara. The series is being simulcast with English subtitles outside of Asia by Crunchyroll. This makes it the first series in the Yu-Gi-Oh! franchise to receive an official simulcast alongside its Japanese broadcast. An edited English-dubbed version is in production by 4K Media Inc. The pilot episode was previewed along with a digitally remastered screening of Yu-Gi-Oh! The Movie: Pyramid of Light on March 11, 2018 in the US, and June 13, 2018 in the UK.
Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS introduces new gameplay elements to the Yu-Gi-Oh! Trading Card Game. As of the Link Strike Starter Deck, a new format was introduced to the competitive field of play. Now, only one monster can be summoned directly from each player's Extra Deck at a time, which will be placed in one of the two new zones in the middle of the field called the "Extra Monster Zone". Complementing the new gameplay element are the new Link Monsters, honey-comb blue colored monsters that go into your Extra Deck. They do not have "Levels" or "Ranks", but instead have a "Link Rating", which indicates the number of arrows on the card and the required number of monsters required for tribute to summon them. A Link Monster's Link Rating can also be used as a number of tributes for a Link Summon depending on their rating, subtracted from the Link Monster the player wishes to summon. Link Monsters have a number of Link Arrows equal to their Link Rating that point either vertically, horizontally, and/or diagonally. These Link Arrows that point to an empty Main Monster Zone allow the player to summon another monster from the Extra Deck. The two Pendulum Zones have been moved to the far ends of the Spell & Trap Zones.
The series ranked 52 in Tokyo Anime Award Festival in Best 100 TV Anime 2017 category.