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No Game No Life Season 2 release date predictions: November announcement gives fans hope for anime sequel

Shiro and Sora in No Game No Life
When will Shiro and Sora return for the second season of the No Game No Life anime? — Pic credit: Madhouse

Is a No Game No Life Season 2 anime announcement forthcoming now that the manga series is returning from its long hiatus?

To commemorate the release of No Game No Life Volume 11 release date on November 24, 2021, it’s been confirmed that there will be a special announcement regarding the series in Monthly Comic Alive Issue 1, 2022 that comes out on November 27, 2021. Anime news leaker Sugoi LITE claims the announcement is simply manga related since the manga went on indefinite hiatus way back in November 2017, but many fans are still holding out hope for No Game No Life 2.

The No Game No Life Season 2 anime has been highly anticipated for many years, especially now that anime studio Madhouse is starting to make a name for making anime sequels. Madhouse even announced the Overlord Season 4 anime in 2021!

In June 2021, No Game No Life creator Yuu Kamiya provided an update on his progress on the book series. He tweeted that he finished the first draft so he’ll presumably start work on the next book, No No Game No Life Volume 12.

On the anime front, the official NGNL Twitter account announced in late June 2021 that the first season would be rebroadcast on all Japanese TV stations during the Summer 2021 anime season. Before that announcement, it had been a long time since any anime-related news was released.

Notably, The Devil is a Part-Timer anime TV series was rebroadcast in Japan shortly before The Devil is a Part-Timer Season 2 anime sequel was confirmed.

Netflix U.S. finally picked up the No Game No Life anime series for streaming in 2020, and now everyone wants to know what’s next for a No Game No Life sequel. Unfortunately, while the No Game No Life: Zero movie was good, it provided a prequel story that just whets fans’ appetites for watching more of Shiro and Sora’s main adventure.

But why is Madhouse being such a Steph by making fans wait for the NGNL anime sequel? It turns out the way the story was published almost required a movie to be made before returning to the main story.

  • Updated November 16, 2021: “Big announcement” is manga-related?
  • Updated October 28, 2021: No Game No Life November announcement confirmed. Added No Game No Life Volume 11 release date and cover art. Added director details and Madhouse 2022 projects.
  • Updated June 16, 2021: No Game No Life Volume 11 first draft finished. Added 2021 info.
  • Updated February 02, 2020: Added Volume 11 and English Volume 10 info, Netflix U.S. release, and updated production schedule for Studio Madhouse.
  • Updated August 26, 2019: Revised financial analysis.

This article provides everything that is known about No Game No Life Season 2 (NGNL Season 2) and all related news. As such, this article will be updated over time with news, rumors, and analysis. Meanwhile, let’s delve down into what is known for certain.

No Game No Life Season 2 Release Date Predictions: Is late 2022 possible?

As of the last update, studio Madhouse or any company related to the production of the anime has not officially confirmed the No Game No Life Season 2 release date. Nor has the production of a sequel been announced.

Once the news is officially confirmed this article will be updated with the relevant information.

In the meantime, it’s possible to speculate about when, or if, the No Game No Life Season 2 premiere date will occur in the future.

The good news is that there is plenty of source material for studio Madhouse to create No Game No Life Season 2. Since one book was turned into the movie, six volumes are available for the second season, leaving room for the possibility of a 24-episode, two-cour second season. Even if a longer second season doesn’t happen, it’d also make sense for Madhouse to jump straight into No Game No Life Season 3.

From a financial viewpoint, the prospects are mixed. To put things into perspective, Madhouse produced Overlord Season 3 and now Overlord 4 even though the Blu-Ray disc sales of Overlord’s second and third season were worse than No Game No Life’s first season.

Back in 2014, the No Game No Life BD Volume 1 sold 8,774 copies, which is considered a great success to this day. On the other hand, the No Game No Life: Zero movie also generated 700 million yen (about $6.3 million) at the box office.

While that’s not much compared to an anime blockbuster like Your Name (25 billion yen) or Spirited Away (31 billion yen), the NGNL movie was popular enough to rank in the top 20 for movies for TV anime adaptations.

While that sounds impressive, to put things into perspective The Seven Deadly Sins: Prisoners Of The Sky (Nanatsu no Taizai: Tenkuu no Torawarebito) generated 650 million yen (about $6.1 million USD) and the movie’s performance is cited as underperforming. Aniplex bailed on the production committee, which is the major reason why both The Seven Deadly Sins Season 4 (or Nanatsu no Taizai Season 3), Nanatsu no Taizai Season 5, and the 2021 The Seven Deadly Sins: Cursed by Light movie switched animation studios.

On the other hand, you have other comparables like the 2018 Bungou Stray Dogs: Dead Apple, which posted 550 million yen (or about $5.2 million). As we all know, studio Bones announced Bungou Stray Dogs Season 4 in November 2021.

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All in all, it could be said that the No Game No Life movie’s performance at the box office isn’t enough to kill the anime series, but similar numbers have caused issues for other anime series. But the first season’s disc sales numbers don’t lie and the anime industry makes most of its money from streaming revenue nowadays.

So, when Netflix U.S. began streaming the first season in February 2020 that was good news for No Game No Life Season 2. Unfortunately, there’s been no sign that the streaming giant intends on picking up the series as a Netflix anime exclusive despite investing heavily into anime exclusives.

A Place Further Than The Universe No Game No Life Anime
It’s obvious that Madhouse still has NGNL on the brain since the 2018 anime A Place Further Than The Universe contained direct advertisements for No Game No Life anime. Pic credit: Madhouse

All in all, it would still behoove the anime production committee to greenlight the production of No Game No Life Season 2. While it’s rare for anime to come back after such a long wait it’s not unheard of. Just ask Log Horizon.

The last time the topic of NGNL Season 2 came up was in February 2019 when anime producer Junichiro Tamura was directly asked about No Game No Life Season 2 in a Reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything).

Tamura is not involved in the NGNL anime at all since he’s a business producer for book publisher Kadokawa and the NGNL books are published by Media Factory, but one Reddit user asked, “How come certain shows don’t get a second season despite being very popular such as No Game No Life?”

“It is difficult to say as there are many different reasons why this may be the case, but I cannot comment on No Game No Life as I am not involved,” Tamura correctly responded.

However, Tamura did provide insight into the overall anime production process. Tamura claims the “most difficult part is securing the schedule of talented staff” and the “biggest time bottlenecks in the creation of an animated series” is forming the anime committee.

So if the finances behind the NGNL anime are solid, the biggest hurdle might be production scheduling. Anime studios are often booked out for projects years in advance. The delay for NGNL Season 2 may be largely due to availability and that’s assuming the second season is not farmed out to an animation studio other than Madhouse. (As in, the NGNL anime is given the One Punch Man treatment.)

Just how busy are the main staff at studio Madhouse? Director Atsuko Ishizuka helmed the first season in 2014, the NGNL movie back in 2017, and in 2018 she directed A Place Further Than The Universe. In 2019/2020 she worked on the storyboards for the Chihayafuru anime. In 2021, she’ll be releasing the Goodbye, DonGlees! movie that’s being produced by Madhouse. As of the last update to this story in October 2021, it’s currently unknown what her next project will be in 2022 and beyond.

From 2019 through 2021, Studio Madhouse itself was producing Ace Of Diamond Act 2 (Ace Of Diamond Season 3), Afterlost, No Guns Life 1 and 2 (see our article on No Guns Life Season 3), Chihayafuru 3, Kyuuketsuki Sug Shinu, the 2021 Sonny Boy original story, 2021 the Takt Op. Destiny original anime, the 2022 Police in a Pod, and the 2022 Goodbye, DonGlees! movie.

Perhaps fans will get lucky and the creative minds behind the NGNL anime will eventually provide a hint about when NGNL Season 2 is coming down the pipeline. Except for the aforementioned anime projects, let’s just say Madhouse’s release schedule for late 2022 is publicly a blank slate at this time.

No Game No Life 11
The book cover art for No Game No Life Volume 11. Pic credit: Yuu Kamiya

No Game No Life Volume 11 release date in November 2021

The story for the anime is based on the No Game No Life light novel series by author Yuu Kamiya, who is also known for co-writing Clockwork Planet. Published by Media Factory, the books are up to Volume 10 as of January 2018.

The latest NGNL novel focused on dwarves. A Gaiden/side story volume called Practical War Game was released in late 2016 and featured six side stories.

The afterword of Volume 10 teases that Volume 11 will be about Sprites, or fairies. Since there was a long wait for the previous book fans have been patiently awaiting any news on a new No Game No Life book.

The author has been steadily plugging away on new books. On June 14, 2021, the author indicated in a tweet that he had finished writing the first draft of NGNL Volume 11 that ended on page 290.

“I’ve finally made it to this point. …… I’ve got a lot of work to do from here, including writing the final draft, adjusting the number of pages, and writing the illustrations, so the goal is still a long way off,” Kamiya tweeted. “So I’m going to shut down Twitter for a while longer and do my best.”

The last sentence was disappointing to some fans who enjoyed reading his tweets about random things and family events.

It was eventually confirmed that the No Game No Life Volume 11 release date was November 24, 2021.

No Game No Life Art Works Novel Book
Fans can check out thNo Game No Life Art Works book that was released on April 01, 2019. The above artwork is a sample from the book. Pic credit: Yuu Kamiya

Speaking of family, the No Game No Life manga is illustrated by Kamiya’s wife, Mashiro Hiiragi, who is also the illustrator for the light novel series. Even though the monthly manga started back in 2013, it has only been collected in hardcover tankobon format in two volumes since the manga went on an indefinite hiatus back in November 2017.

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However, a second manga series called No Game No Life, Please! by mangaka Yuizaki Kazuya had four volumes. The manga finished in late 2018 and provides a completed original story based on Werebeast girl Hasuse Izuna.

As previously mentioned, it seems that a new manga adaptation series will be announced by Comic Alive magazine in November 2021.

Yuu Kamiya Manga Light Novel Writer Artist
No Game No Life creator Yuu Kamiya. Pic credit: Yuu Kamiya

The official English translation of the No Game No Life novel series is licensed for North American release by Yen Press. There were fan translation projects, but most ended with Volume 6.

The English version came out slowly over the years. The English No Game No Life Volume 10 finally caught up on February 18, 2020.

No Game No Life manga/light novel series compared to the anime

Reviews of the first season lauded the characters, story, and pacing of the anime adaptation. The very first light novel volume was covered by the events of the first four episodes, while the second volume was finished with Episode 8. The third volume was adapted with similar pacing, although Episode 12, Rule Number 10, finished off by jumping ahead to an event that occurred in a later book.

When we last saw Shiro and Sora, they had just won the “world’s most brutal coin toss” against the Warbeasts and formed the Elkia Federation. Team Blank intends on challenging the god Tet by collecting all of the chess-shaped race game pieces. These events were based on the story from Volume 3.

The shrine priestess Miko ups the ante by summoning an Old Deus, one of the first-ranked old gods called the Exceed. This Old Deus resides within the priestess, having lost its status when Tet became the One True God at the end of the Great War.

While this scene was a great way to tease No Game No Life Season 2 with a cliffhanger ending, the issue is that it comes from the very end of Volume 6. Besides skipping way ahead in the plot, the scene also included more characters than were present in the light novels. Presumably, the second season would retcon that ending entirely, pretend it never happened, but then redo it again with the full reveal of the identity of the Old Deus from Volume 7 (see the spoilers section below for more details).

No Game No Life Zero
A key visual for the No Game No Life: Zero movie. Pic credit: Madhouse

No Game No Life: Zero Story Jumped Ahead Of The Anime

Unlike many anime movies on a TV adaptation, No Game No Life: Zero’s plot was actually based on a single light novel volume instead of being an original story. Author Kamiya was up to only Volume 5 when the first season of the anime aired in 2014 and the publisher requested that he submit the manuscript for Volume 6 before the anime aired.

That explains why the ending of the first season drew upon Volume 6 for the dramatic ending.  The book was also more of a prequel than a continuation of the main story, which is why Madhouse couldn’t immediately produce a second season. The book has the god Tet explaining his own origins and how the Ten Pledges came to rule Disboard after the tragic end of the Great War between the 16 races.

But the No Game No Life movie is mostly a story of forbidden love between two characters who resembled Shiro and Sora. The main characters of the film were Riku Dola and his wife Shuvi Dola, a young leader of a human enclave and a battle android called an Ex Machina that was built to kill gods but she desired to know the meaning of a heart. After suffering the effects of the Great War, Riku seeks an ancient relic called the Star Grail in order to bring peace to the warring world.

Without getting into too many spoilers, some fans found the No Game No Life: Zero movie shocking because it showed just how bloodthirsty and psychotic Jibril the Flugel was 6,000 years before she was bound by rules of the Ten Pledges. Since No Game No Life Season 2 will technically start in Volume 4, watching the movie may cast the actions of the current day characters in a new light.

Starting on August 28, 2018, fans who missed the theatrical release can buy the 2018 Blu-Ray/DVD, which comes with an English dub. HIDIVE has also announced that fans can watch No Game No Life Zero streaming in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, and other territories. The No Game No Life Zero movie streaming comes with an English dub as well as Spanish and Japanese audio with Spanish and English subtitles. Similarly, Hulu started providing the NGNL movie for streaming in September 2018.

No Game No Life Art Small
The artwork for No Game No Life books makes for perfect wallpapers. Pic credit: Yuu Kamiya

No Game No Life Season 2 Spoilers

The second season will kick off with a more-lighted story where Sora and Shiro make plans in the Werebeasts’ Eastern Union for the inevitable beach vacation episode that features skimpy swimsuits aplenty. Following the alliance between humans and Werebeasts, Izuna Hatsuse is now a constant companion to Team Blank and they spend the night at her house.

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While on vacation, they are visited by Plum, the last remaining male Dhampir on Disboard. The Dhampir are like a combination between succubi and vampires. They’re weak against sunlight and they live by consuming soul essence from bodily fluids from other races. In order for a Dhampir to reach adulthood, a young Dhampir must bite a willing subject and consume blood.

Unfortunately for Dhampir, mere survival is difficult because the Ten Pledges require them to win games in order to gain soul essence and blood.

Centuries ago, the Dhampir found a solution to this crisis by forming a mutually beneficial pact with the mermaid-like Sirens, who must reproduce by mating with other races in order to extract soul essence (they don’t use DNA so half-breed Sirens don’t exist). In exchange for giving blood to the Dhampir females, the Siren Empress, Laira Lorelei, had been reproducing with Dhampir males.

But 800 years ago Laira grew bored with life and encased herself in solid ice and put herself to sleep using the Ten Pledges. The mating pact continued, but other Sirens have trouble controlling their desires and thus many Dhampir males were dying during mating. The situation was so bad that Plum became the last remaining male.

The entire Dhampir species is facing extinction and even Plum is starving when he meets Team Blank, only surviving by licking the sweat off of Shiro’s foot. Plum has disguised himself as a female Dhampir and looks like a goth girl. He requests the help of Team Blank and so they set out to the Siren’s country, Oceando.

Team Blank may be ultimate gamers but the Sirens expose their ultimate weakness: they are terrible at dating sim games. In order to awaken the Siren Empress, they must enter Laira’s dream state and get her to fall in love with them in a realistic romance game. As a Dhampir, Plum is very powerful and can use a variety of magic. He’s able to shapeshift and create love potions, so they use deception in an attempt to fool Laira into falling in love, but even those tactics fail to awaken the slumbering Siren.

It turns out even the Sirens don’t know the exact conditions for winning the romance game in their Empress’ mind. So, the team splits up to investigate, with some traveling to Avent Hiem, home of Jibril the Flugel, and others go back to the previous human king’s hidden library.

No Game No Life Light Novel Volume 5 Cover English
The Flugel Azriel is featured on the cover of No Game No Life Volume 5. Pic credit: Mashiro Hiiragi

The story continued in Volume 5 with Sora, Shiro, Plum, and Jibril meeting with Azriel, a Flugel leader who played a role in the No Game No Life: Zero movie. Meanwhile, Kurami and Fil are trying to overthrow the elven nation.

Team Blank challenges all of the Flugel to a game, hoping to convince Azriel to join the Elkia Federation. The goal of the game is to avoid capture while flying using Plum’s magic.

Unfortunately, even Avent Hiem’s amazing library does not provide a clue for how to awaken the Siren Empress. Sora and Shiro must figure out how to beat the romance game on their own so they can save the Sirens and the Dhampir from mutual destruction. Sora also finds himself in a “hairy” situation that results in an unexpected development.

No Game No Horou
The Old Deus Horou may be powerful but she takes on the appearance of a young girl

Finally catching up with the ending of the first season, the Old Deus that the Werebeast priest Miko had summoned is named Horou. Blank challenges the Werebeast god to a game in which Miko uses her own life as a bargaining chip. If they lose the game, they will be forced into the Horou’s servitude. If they win, the Old Deus will grant them their wish.

Horou creates a life-sized board game where participants use dice to complete a series of tasks while traveling thousands of kilometers. The journey is certainly longer than any Monopoly game, but their time limit for winning is only a month. The gamers lose a whole day’s worth of memories, but they’re also told that a traitor who retained full memories exists has been planted amongst them by Horou.

The stakes are very high this time around. Horou is testing everyone by creating challenges where the winning conditions require that a friend be killed. One friend loses memories and then abruptly challenges Team Blank to a game within the game. It’s a full-on simulated recreation of the Great War where the loser commits suicide. Sora and Shiro must win this war simulation by leading humanity to victory. There will also be plenty of revelations since this part of the story touches on reincarnation in Disboard, the Star Grail, and how Tet’s existence came to be.

No Game No Life Season 2 might find an ending with Volume 7 in order to keep the same pacing, but ending with Volume 8 might be better since it completes the story arc related to Horou’s game. The book also finishes off with a cliffhanger that would be a perfect setup for No Game No Life Season 3.

Let’s just hope fans don’t have to wait too long to watch No Game No Life Season 2 on their TV screens. Stay tuned!

Patrick Frye is Monsters and Critics' Anime Editor. He considers...read more

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