The first day of the Mahora festival is coming to a close, again. Negiís been using some rather suspicious magic to keep repeating the day and get his rather sizable to-do list done. The big event though has to be the Mahora Bodokai, a martial arts tournament that give Negi the perfect chance to test his skills.
This volume of Negima is a direct continuation from book 10. Itís still the first day of the Mahora fest, which has been greatly prolonged since Negi has been repeating the day over and over again so that he has time in this volume to attend a cosplay contest, cross dress, watch some gymnastics and train on a secret Beach resort. This provides the perfect excuse for Negi to visit all the girls so that they each get some time in the spotlight before the focus shifts to the tournament which focuses on the combat ready participants.
The tournament is classic shonen manga, it provides a chance for normally friendly characters to test their skills against each other. Since the world of Negima includes both chi and magic attacks which means there are plenty of unusual martial arts moves and great big explosions. Itís been obvious for some time that Negima was moving towards something like this since several of the main cast members have been training.
As with the previous volume the artwork is great, using digital technology to enhance the manga rather than drown it out in tones. Many of the backdrops are constructed in 3D but rendered as if inked with pen, this means that Akamatsu can be far more generous with backgrounds than other serialised shonen artists.
Tanoshimi have included a generous selection of extras, including lineart roughs of the covers, fan art from the mangaís Japanese edition translation notes, Mahora fest time line, as well as the usual selection of 3D background renders.
This volume of Negima strays firmly back into well trodden shonen fighting territory. As with any manga of this type for this to work you have to care about the characters, and with much of this volume dedicated to spending time with some of them it just might be working too.