Trapped in a Dating Sim: The World of Otome Games is Tough for Mobs presents an interesting spin on both isekai and harem anime. Among the many new isekai in the spring 2022 anime season, the new serial adaptation from Food Wars episode director Kazuya Miura and Shin’ichi Fukumoto has caught the attention of anime fans for its attempt to subvert the very gendered conventions of its genres.
Based on the ongoing light novel-turned-manga series by Yomu Mishima, series protagonist Leon is reincarnated in a fantasy world unlike the isekai we’re familiar with. Instead of a hack and slash RPG, this is an otome game — a game about romance made for a female audience that often takes the form of a visual novel or dating sim.
The World of Otome Games is Tough for Mobs is not the first popular isekai anime, however. My Next Life as a Villainess: All Routes Lead to Doom! took the same angle. But unlike that one, the series is set from the perspective of a man in the games world. A lowly “mob” who finds himself ready to be married off to an NPC, Leon fights his way onto the aristocratic main cast to reach the game’s protagonist.
While it’s not a fantasy RPG, the world still features swords and dungeons and there’s even some action. There’s also a mysterious sci-fi backdrop to the world where normal human men are lowly members in the social caste. The World of Otome Games is Tough for Mobs tries to dig into this to varying effect as an isekai, where the main character is very much not living a power fantasy. He even has gripes over the game worlds balancing, having to trudge his way through pay-to-win mechanics.
Where can I watch The World of Otome Games is Tough for Mobs?
Studio ENGI’s The World of Otome Games is Tough for Mobs features character designs from Masahiko Suzuki (Full Dive), a script by Kenta Ihara (Tomodachi Game), and original music by Kana Hashiguchi (Classroom of the Elite) and Show Aratame (Laid Back Camp).
Mishima’s original light novel and manga are published by Seven Seas Entertainment in North America, while the anime adaptation is available to stream on Crunchyroll. Crunchyroll is also producing an English dub of the series, which premiered its first episode on Sunday, April 17.