Sex Crime: Zero Sum Game -

Anime/Manga Reviews

Mania Grade: B

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  • Audio Rating: B
  • Video Rating: B
  • Packaging Rating: B+
  • Menus Rating: B-
  • Extras Rating: N/A
  • Age Rating: 18 & Up
  • Region: 1 - North America
  • Released By: Adult Source Media
  • MSRP: 29.98
  • Running time: 30
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
  • Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
  • Series: Sex Crime: Zero Sum Game

Sex Crime: Zero Sum Game

By Chris Beveridge     April 19, 2005
Release Date: March 15, 2005

Sex Crime: Zero Sum Game
© Adult Source Media

What They Say
Yukka, a young college student and Yazaki Keith, a famous lead singer in the Zero Sum band thought they would spend the rest of their lives together.

But after a concert one night, Yukka is taken and gangbanged by the rest of the band members. Yukka does not tell Yazaki Keith as he seduces her again and again. However, the experience of the gangbang has aroused sexual desires within Yukka which leaves sex with Yazaki Keith unsatisfying.

Yukka is torn between her love for Yazaki Keith and her lustful desires for the rest of the band leaving her not knowing what to do.

The Review!
Young love is interrupted when an unknown jealousy from the past surfaces in a most surprising way.

For our primary viewing session, we listened to this show in its original language of Japanese. This is also the only language available on this release as no English language version was made for it. The Japanese track is a pretty straightforward stereo mix that does have some minor moments of directionality but it's mostly the music that does a nice job of giving a full feeling performance. Dialogue is clean and clear throughout and we had no problems with dropouts or distortions during regular playback.

Originally released back in 1999, the transfer for this series is presented in its original full frame aspect ratio. This is a nice throwback to a time that I think I almost enjoy more with presentations as it's traditionally animated and just has a bit more of a richer and livelier feel to it but the trade-off is that there's a fair amount of grain throughout it. The animation itself looks good and is pretty detailed throughout, generally the hair being the most detailed area, and backgrounds maintain a mostly solid feel that's only given to a little blocking due to the grain. Cross coloration is pretty much non-existent here and aliasing was fairly minimal all things considered.

With a focus on the only woman in the show, she gets herself treated nicely here with her clothes being shredded while the image of chains runs in front of her and the dark stare of the villain of the piece behind her. It's not exactly the most eye-catching piece but the character designs are nice and it lets you know what to expect. The back cover provides a really nice looking shot of the lead in a partial state of undress and a series of screenshots in two strips. The summary covers the bulk of the show since it's only thirty minutes while the bottom covers the technical and production information. No insert is included in this release.

The menu layout is similar to other releases from this studio in that the background is a brick wall and it has a yellowish/brown swirl of paint and lines covering it. It does use some of the artwork from the back cover, a really nice shot of the lead, along the right side while the basic menu pieces are along the left. Access times are nice and fast and there's little here beyond the show and a few trailers. Since there's no real selections for language other than turning the subtitles on, the discs defaults mirror our players defaults.


Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Whenever I get a show like this where it's not like all the other digitally produced shows these days with the slick colors, the new fetishes that are all the rage or something based off of a game which plays out in a similar manner, it's like revisiting the kind of adult anime I used to enjoy a lot many years ago, sort of like nostalgia and revisiting the good old days.

Zero Sum Game, or amusingly called Zero Sam Game in a bit of Engrish in the original title card page, is a fairly simple little OVA that twists nicely along the way. We're introduced to a pair of young lovers with the very attractive Yukka and her boyfriend Yazaki as they show just how well they get along in bed. While relaxing afterwards, the bang Zero Sum comes up on the TV and Yukka remembers that Yazaki was friends with the lead singer back in college and asks him to get tickets so they can go see them. Yazaki pulls a few strings and they go to enjoy the show and meet up with them afterwards, which is a surprise to the bands lead singer Keith who hasn't seen Yazaki in years.

Keith invites them out to a post gig party where the alcohol flows freely and everyone has a good time. When Yukka heads out looking for the bathroom, Keith works on getting Yazaki nice and drunk and keeps him occupied while his band mates follow out to where Yukka is as Keith told them that she's just another willing fan. Though she tries to fight them off, the band has their way with her while Keith takes Yazaki back home in a taxi. He manages to play this off nicely by befriending Yukka afterwards and telling her that she can't tell Yazaki about it because it would destroy him. As we learn going through this, Keith has some hidden feelings of his own and he intends to do his best to make sure that what he really wants he can get. And with Yukka being "damaged goods" now, he's set to put his plan into motion.

With an amusing twist in the show, this is actually a fairly decent little episode that has some really attractive character designs with Yukka, some decent group sex and individual scenes and enough of a plot to carry it along though it does get weak in a few areas. There's just something more interesting and attractive about character designs and artwork done this way, particularly for adult pieces, where the characters seem to be much more animated and alive for things than some of the digital productions.

In Summary:
Zero Sum Game is a fun little throwback to barely five or six years ago when the traditional animation age ended and things were going digital. While the plot may be the same as more recent shows, there's just a significant difference in how it really looks and feels when it comes to the two styles and I keep liking this one more and more as I get to see them. This release is yet another one from ASM that shows they're getting things done better with each new title. Like their other titles, I wish it had a dub and I wish they had more episodes per volume, but with so little hentai being released these days overall I'm not sure what the companies have to do to get any of this out and make a profit to ensure more releases.

Japanese 2.0 Language,English Subtitles

Review Equipment
Panasonic PT50LC13 50" LCD RP HDTV, Zenith DVB-318 RP-82 Progressive Scan codefree DVD player via DVI with upconversion set to 720p, Sony STR-DE835 DD/DTS receiver, Monster component cable and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.


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