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Ninjala Anime Release Date, Characters, And Plot - What We Know So Far

The "Ninjala" video game made waves when it hit the multiplayer scene on the Nintendo Switch in 2020. The game, which centers upon players battling each other as ninjas in melee arenas, attracted players with its colorful art style, flashy battle mechanics and free-to-play payment model. Since its release, the game has only grown in both content and popularity, even going to feature crossover events with other major franchises like "Sonic the Hedgehog."

But like many of its recent ilk, such as the "Overwatch" and "Splatoon" franchises, "Ninjala" has a lot more going on beneath its charming exterior when it comes to worldbuilding. In reality, the video game is host to some pretty expansive and mysterious lore that takes the game's wacky premise of kid ninjas duking it out and elaborates on it in far more depth than one might expect. 

Now, with the upcoming release of a "Ninjala" anime, the creators of the game are diving deeper into the world of the game than ever before.

What is the release date of the Ninjala anime?

Fans won't have to wait long to watch the "Ninjala" anime ... or at all, for that matter. The show's first episode went live on Jan. 13, 2022 on the official "Ninjala" YouTube channel. Subsequent episodes of the series are expected to be released on a weekly basis and will remain free-to-watch on YouTube until the next episode is released. It is currently unknown how many episodes of the show are set to be produced for this initial run.

As for fans of English dubs for anime, the official "Ninjala" Twitter account teased that a dub for the series could happen, but also cautioned that it would take some time as the process is very time-consuming. Still, it at least appears at the moment that patient fans can look forward to more details about a potential English dub for the show in the future.

Who is in the main cast of the Ninjala anime?

The "Ninjala" anime will follow the main eight playable characters from the original game, with all of the original voice actors reprising their roles. That list includes Takahiro Sakurai as the determined scientist Burton, Akari Kitō as Burton's strict partner Berecca, Hiroki Yasumoto as the mysterious ninja Ron, Junko Minagawa as the intelligent hacker Jane, Yumiko Kobayashi as the regular-boy-turned-ninja Van, Aoi Yuki as the unhinged loose cannon Lucy, Ayumu Murase as the fledgling ninja Kappei, and Megumi Han as the lively vigilante Emma.

Provided that an English dub of the anime does eventually release, it is likely that such a project would see the English voice actors of the game's characters reprising their roles as well, such as Max Mittelman as Burton and Becky Robinson as Van. However, fans will have to wait for more concrete news on this front.

What is the plot of the Ninjala anime?

The "Ninjala" anime looks to adapt the main game's storyline, while also adding in more details to build out the world and its characters. The backstory of the series is fairly simple, albeit a bit wacky. In the world of the franchise, the descendants of ninjas from eras long forgotten have banded together to form the World Ninja Association. The organization successfully develops a product called Ninja Gum that awakens the shinobi genes of those with ninja heritage in their bloodlines and decides to host a fighting competition called Ninjala to determine the best ninja.

The show is set to chronicle this tournament between a new generation of ninjas, though all eight main competitors enter the battle for different reasons. Burton, Berecca, and Jane join the competition after learning that using the Ninja Gum turns adults into children, while Van joins to train to be a better ninja at the behest of his mother, and so on. It seems that viewers will have to watch the show to learn the ultimate fate of the characters and find out who emerges victorious from Ninjala.