It’s not surprising to see something like this come from Mine Yoshizaki. Though he’s best known for Sgt. Frog (Keroro Gunso), he got his start in the early ’90s drawing Capcom dojins, and his earlier professional works include manga adaptions of Dragon Quest and Twinbee. Arcade Gamer Fubuki isn’t based on any particular game, instead it is about a young girl with a love of and uncanny ability for games.
At the center of the story is the titular Fubuki Sakuragasaku, who in many ways is just an average schoolgirl. Pushed by her friend Hanako, she takes part in competitions, learns many secrets, and fights for justice…of video games. It’s silly, nonsensical, and as is standard for Yoshizaki, just a little bit perverted — Fubuki’s game-playing powers are activated by a flash of her Pac-Man panties.
Most chapters put Fubuki (and often Hanako) into either a game-playing situation, such as a tournament, or a parody of a specific game or genre. One particularly memorable sees Hanako repurposing her own house to mimic a sound novel. The supporting cast include Mr. Mystery, a speedo-clad bodybuilder wearing a Pac-Man Ghost mask who acts as Fubuki’s mentor, and the Galaxi-dan, a gang of ne’er-do-wells out to take over the world of video games, and doing a fantastically ineffective job at it.
This is a gag-manga through-and-though, with a light sprinkling of game history mixed in for those interested. There are even short history lessons and anecdotes provided between chapters. Continuity and drama are thrown out regularly for the sake of a joke. The art is competent but quite cartoony, in Yoshizaki’s faintly Toriyama-esqe style. The content is a bit dated (it positions the Dreamcast as the hot new console), but that actually works in its favor by adding retro charm. There isn’t really any purpose to the proceedings, but it’s amusing all the same, and definitely worth the hour or two it’ll take to read. Recommended.