(alternatively Terra ForMars) is a currently ongoing action/sci-fi manga written by Yu Sasuga and illustrated by Kenichi Tachibana
The year is 2599. Humanity has reached an unsustainable level of overpopulation on Earth, and is beginning what would be the final stages of terraforming and colonizing Mars. The plan by late 21st century scientists was to release a form of moss on the planet along with cockroaches, who in turn would grow and eat, and their corpses would contribute to the moss growth, eventually leading to enough of a greenhouse effect for a breathable atmosphere to take hold. Recently a team named Bugs #1 went to Mars to exterminate the roaches, since the atmosphere had developed enough that the moss alone could finish the job. However, contact was lost with them almost immediately after arrival.
Now it is the time of the second expedition, Bugs #2. Upon arriving, the team found out what caused Bugs #1 to lose contact: the roaches. Having hyper-evolved in the last 500 years (hinted due to alien influence), they are now 7 ft tall cavemen-like humanoid creatures who posses their original proportional strength as bugs (50 times their body mass), and the seeming ability to keep evolving against anything that can kill them. However, the company that sent out Bugs #2 knew this was going to happen, and had prepared for it. The team members are all able to take on aspects of other creatures in the animal kingdom, and use that proportional abilities and unique insect powers to fight back against the nearly endless hordes of roaches.
Very explicit and bloody, and in many ways is a Spiritual Successor
to Gantz. Is currently at 4 volumes, 3 of which have been translated thanks to a CM for volume 4 of the manga on tv that resparked interest in the series.
This manga provides examples of
- Adaptive Ability: The bugs as a whole.
- Anyone Can Die: For instance Bugs #1 is annihilated by the first prequel chapter and there are only two survivors from Bugs 2 by the end of the first volume.
- Before the end of the second chapter, the main male character's girlfriend is given a One-Hit Kill in the first encounter with the bugs.
- Arc Words: "The memory left by Rahab". As of this point, we don't know who or what Rahab is, just that he/she/it is probably responsible for what the roaches have become in just 500 years.
- Artistic License - Biology: This almost doesn't need to be said. While the actual attributes and abilities of the insects they are based on are true, you can't just turn humans into human-bug hybrids outside of the X-Men. Not to say anything about the roaches' hyper-evolution, which is less like evolution and closer to the adaptation ability of the Borg. To further complicate matters the moths that were left on Mars seem to be evolving even faster than the cockroaches. Showing fingers on their bodies. Despite basically being a foodsource or the cockroaches that strengthens them.
- Author Appeal: Yu Sasuga is clearly a big fan of Kamen Rider, especially considering one of the most sympathetic characters in Bugs #2 was a locust-human.
- Badass Israeli: God Lee of Bugs #2, the ground beetle-human. Was also the first to die in combat against the roaches.
- Bee People: Quite literally in one of our main characters. Specifically, he's a Japanese Giant Hornet.
- Body Horror: If a human dopes on too much of the transformation drug, they become too insectoid and cant transform back, becoming more biologically insect than human. Since an insect's biology is not meant for a human sized creature, Reality Ensues, and the person in question dies.
- Bug War: Though in a twist, the human are more bug-like when transformed than the roaches.
- Catch Phrase: "Don't underestimate humanity!", said by several characters.
- Complete Immortality: Hiruma's power. Nothing can kill him while he's in his hibernation state. Balanced by the fact that he has to sleep during it, and it's the only power he has.
- Creepy Cockroach: The manga can't exist without this trope.
- Determinator: Pretty much every character, even the bugs.
- Dwindling Party: Bugs#2 during volume 1. Similarly the third expedition started with 100 people and their numbers are rapidly dwindling.
- Elite Mooks: The roaches with the bug powers copied from the crew of Bugs #2.
- Gender Is No Object: It is 500 years later after all.
- Instant Expert: The bugs somehow manage to learn how to use human equipment despite the fact that the most advanced weapon they had previously was a club.
- A large part of this is hinted to be the result of the fact that the bug's brains have evolved as much as their bodies (and have some sort of extraterrestrial tech available to help educate them). They have, by Bugs #3, become as smart as humans, if not more so, and simply lacked the necessary infrastructure needed to be able to build an industrial base like the humans have. Given that each Bugs missions has several years between them, this has given the roaches plenty of time to learn the basics of whatever tech they capture from previous missions, and from what they learn from that, allows them to quickly master any new tech they receive.
- Lightning Bruiser: The roaches, even in their most base form.
- Mood Whiplash: During the third expedition, some of the male characters are debating whether to peep on a woman in the shower room. And then it turns out a flying roach had infiltrated the ship and brutally killed her. And then all hell breaks loose.
- Poor Communication Kills: This appears to be at first the reason behind why the roaches wanted to kill us as soon as we first saw them, but later it turns out that they just have an instinctual need to "squish" us much like how we do towards regular roaches.
- Power Copying: Some of the roaches facing the third expedition ave somehow evolved to be able to use the bug powers that the crew of Bugs #2 used.
- Scenery Porn: For a desolate red wasteland, Kenichi Tachibana can make the mountainous terrain of Mars look beautiful.
- Slasher Smile: While the roaches usually have expressionless faces, some of them pull off this.
- Starfish Language: The roaches clearly have some form of language, but to us it just sounds like "Juh" over and over with different inflections.
- Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: Averted with the Mars teams who work together perfectly (and they need to just to stand a chance at surviving) despite all being from different countries. However there are hints that there is friction between the higher ups of each country.
- Twenty Minutes into the Future: It's the 2600s and all that's shown to have changed is that society's gotten worse due to overpopulation and some improvements in space travel.
- Unskilled, but Strong: The roaches started out as this. By the end of volume 1, there were new roaches born that instinctively knew how to counter martial arts styles and took combat stances when fighting.
- Zerg Rush: The roaches generally outnumber the humans in any engagement though not to an absurd extent. However, they're still extremely strong.