Act, Addict, Actors!, or commonly referred and shortened as A3!, is a mobile game created by Liber Entertainment, the creator of the rhythm game I-Chu.
In A3, you play as Izumi, a young woman who is visiting a theater for a troupe that is said to be her father's theater company. But when you arrive at the theater, not only is the theater itself in shambles, the troupe is also buried in debt. As the daughter of the previous director of said troupe, your job is to gather members as actors to bring the troupe back to its former glory.
The troupes you manage are as follows:
- Spring Troupe, which specializes in storybooks or fairy tale plays (led by Sakuya Sakuma)
- Summer Troupe, which specializes in comedies (led by Tenma Sumeragi)
- Autumn Troupe, which specializes in action plays (led by Banri Settsu)
- Winter Troupe, which specializes in drama and mystery (led by Tsumugi Tsukioka)
The series has its own discography as well, consisting of the theme songs for their various plays and Image Songs for all of the characters.
A second part to the main story was announced in 2018, adding four new characters to the lineup. Part 3, with another additional four actors, was announced in 2020.
An English port of the game was announced in 2018 and released by Cybird on 23 October 2019. A Chinese port was released late August 2018 under Komoe Game. The English port was discontinued in early 2022.
This page is for the tropes present in the video game. For tropes common to all media in the franchise and for the plays staged by the fictional MANKAI Company, please see here. The page for the character sheet is here. The tropes found in the stage play and movies are here.
The video game A3! contains examples of:
- A Day in the Limelight: The backstage stories in general, but especially troupe events. The latter focuses on the character who is playing the lead and expands on their back story.
- Ambidextrous Sprite: Especially apparent on some characters' chibis, such as Hisoka's left instead of right eye getting hidden under his bangs, etc.
- Anti-Frustration Features: The games lessons play out the same way as Ensemble Stars! which requires lots of tapping. However, A3 has the auto function which not only stops you from tapping too many times to proceed, but also saves time.
- April Fools' Day: The April Fools events are Alternate Universes that feature one of the supporting characters.
- 2017's A4! (Act! Addict! Actors! Academy!) has the cast from all troupes including Izumi and Matsukawa in a high school AU with some of the cast being teachers. 2018's celebration turned the Mankai players into host club members. There was also a fair amount of characters switching personalities.
- 2018's A5! (Act! Addict! Actors! Adult! Activity!) has the cast join Club Mankai, which is a host club AU. Like in the original story, Sakyo picks up Sakoda and takes him in, but not in the yakuza, but in the host club.
- 2019's A6! (Act! Addict! Actors! Absolute! Aggressive! Action!) is a fighting game parody wherein the troupes are representatives from countries and fight against each other, with the champion being Yuzo.
- 2020's A7! (Act! Addict! Actors! Atsumare! All! Alive! Animals!) has the cast members change into animals, and Tetsuro is a carpenter who is loved by the animals.
- 2021's A8! (Act! Addict! Actors! Appare! All! mAinichi! hAtaraku! mAn!)has Izumi enter MIZUNO Enterprise, with Company President Mizuno and the cast as employees.
- 2022's A9! (Act! Addict! Actors! mAnkAi! mAgicAl! AcAdemy!) has MANKAI Magical Academy, with the cast and Madoka having their own types of magic.
- Awesome, but Impractical: The Act 2 and 3 link skills, which require all your cards to be from at least Act 2 and 3 respectively. While they give bigger boost, Act 2 and 3 cards are harder to obtain especially when you or the act have just started.
- Rookie cards are at least Act 2 cards by default, so you do not have to worry about the rookie side of the Act 2 link skills. Act 3 link skills do not have that perk, which causes them to be more impractical.
- Big Fancy House: The Arisugawa family lives in one and has an equally big and fancy villa (which has a rose garden and a pond with a boat) for various events. The Dazzling Rose Mansion minichat has Muku get lost in the villa because it is too huge.
- Book Ends: The end of Part 1 (Act 4) and 2 (Act 8) of the Main Story has Izumi talking to Sakuya.
- Bowdlerise: The English localization modifies Azuma's April Fools' line from him claiming to be a woman and willing to strip to show the proof, to claiming to have a tattoo of a woman on his back and willing to show it.
- Cerebus Retcon: Hisoka sleeping everywhere often causes a lot of hilarity. Then Mankai Memory revealed that he was a Street Urchin, and we got to see his sprite as a kid: a disheveled little boy in tattered clothes.
- Chekhov's Gag:
- In Act 1, in order to get Itaru to stay in the Spring Troupe, Sakuya, Masumi, Tsuzuru and Citron devised an improvised play of a family with Sakuya, Masumi and Tsuzuru as the children, Itaru as the father, and Citron as the mother. In act 5, after accidentally making Chikage mad by adding much more spice than necessary on his food, they bring this act back as a form of apology... with Chikage as the grandpa to Sakuya, Masumi and Tsuzuru's role, father to Itaru, and Father-in-law to Citron.
- Early in Act 7, the Autumn Troupe had to perform to a group of kindergarten students at Taichi's request because the original group that is supposed to perform are unable to make it in time and the troupe accepts... while wearing animal costumes throughout the performance. When Azami is kidnapped by a vengeful high school student with a grown ego because his father is in the Yakuza hours before the final performance, the rest of the Autumn troupe rescues him... using the head of the animal costumes to cover their faces.
- Chekhov's Gun:
- In "Tales Of Chivalry: Ginji The Wanderer", Sakyo originally had some money saved up to get a house for his mother, stepfather, and stepsister but saved it up for Mankai Company to use since his mother decided to not buy the house. In Act 8, Those savings are used to get both the spring troupe and winter troupe a group flight to Zahra to get Citron back.
- The kimono shop Homare talked about in his [What a Stylish Young Master] backstage would later appear in This is the Inner Palace, the Flower Garden and lend Mankai Company their kimono and save the day.
- Chekhov's Gunman:
- Masumi's grandmother was mentioned off-hand in the Midsummer Sparkle Memory event. She makes an appearance in Act 5.
- At the end of Act 4, Hisoka received a fan letter that is signed by a person named April. April is later revealed to be Chikage, the eventual sixth member of the Spring Troupe. It's his code name in the agency Hisoka used to be a part of.
- Near the end of Act 3, Juza mentions he has a little brother. Said brother would become the sixth member of the Summer Troupe in Part 2.
- Sakyo mentions his boss has a son during the events of the Autumn Troupe's third play. Said son would start hiding out at MANKAI Company during act 6 before becoming the Autumn Troupe's sixth member.
- Cool and Unusual Punishment: Sakyo's form of punishing people for certain events involve the losers being forced to wear giant bunny costumes.
- Crossover: With fellow Liber Entertainment game I-Chu in 2017. A3! had also collaborated with the Taiko no Tatsujin franchise, Psycho-Pass 3, Pac-Man, and Sk8 the Infinity.
- Disc-One Nuke: A few of them.
- A few early SSR cards can make teambuilding and clearing event shows easy due to their versatility for link skills, and thus make important team leaders. Initial SSR Muku and Azuma in particular, which you can pull from as early as the tutorial pull, can be in most Co and Dr team builds respectively.
- The Dr link skill Shogi Club consists of Itaru, Misumi, Taichi, Azami, and Guy, four of them are available as early as the tutorial pull. It can also be built along with Tsumugi, who is also available as early as the tutorial pull, to activate another Dr link skill Talented Tutors. With the JP version guaranteeing three SSRs during the tutorial pull, it is possible to get a beefy roster for the Shogi build right off the bat.
- "Do It Yourself" Theme Tune: The opening movie's songs, "MANKAI☆Kaika Sengen" and "Haru Natsu Aki Fuyu☆Blooming!", and the anime theme "Act! Addict! Actors!", are done by the A3ders (the troupe leaders— Sakuya, Tenma, Banri, and Tsumugi).
- Expy: The characters in the play for SK∞ the Infinity × A3! event are this rather than the the characters from Sk8, wearing the Palette Swap outfits of the characters and sharing some similarities or none at all personality-wise.
- Four-Element Ensemble: The A9 April Fools features a magic school, which features four dorms based on the four elements. Each troupe belongs to a different dorm.
- Spring Troupe is Wind. Citron greets Madoka by conjuring wind to blow away various books and objects in the classroom.
- Summer Troupe is Fire. Tenma is sparring with Banri in the courtyard and displays his ability to conjure fire.
- Autumn Troupe is Earth. Banri is sparring with Tenma in the courtyard and conjures earthen magic to block Tenma's fire.
- Winter Troupe is Water. Winter Troupe's display of magic features them manifesting in the hall from a magic circle.
- "Groundhog Day" Loop: The Torment Doll caused Tsumugi and Tasuku constantly to rewind the 12th, the day before the decision whether they accept Reni's challenge or not. Misumi was caught in the loop as well, losing his triangles each time a new day started, and pleaded the two to reconcile so that they could get out of the loop.
- In the past, the doll trapped Reni and Yukio in the loop as well. Unlike the present day, where it was already known how to get out of the loop, Reni had to figure out the solution by himself: try making a different choice each time.
- Interface Spoiler: Looking at the Winter Troupe's section in the backstage story tab will show that Tasuku isn't just a rival and will eventually join the Mankai Company. While in general, looking at the backstage story tab will let players know who will be joining the troupe roster in the future, Tasuku's role is one of the more surprising ones, as in the early parts of the main scenario, he is a Friendly Enemy to the protagonist.
- Even more surprising than Tasuku is Sakyo, who is initially introduced as an antagonist about to demolish the Mankai Theatre.
- Pairing Tasuku and Taichi up for coin-earning will reveal that their relationship is "Former Troupemates", spoiling the twist that the mole from God Troupe is Taichi.
- Irony: Banri often makes fun of how Juza is bad at comedy. Banri himself lacks strong Co link skills, all while Juza has a link skill that gives 36% boost to Co attributenote .
- Leaning on the Fourth Wall: Mainly from Itaru, but a few other characters also take jabs at gacha gaming culture like whaling.
- Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane:
- Omi's Stranger card's Side Story has him getting into a dream where the world and the characters of this play are real, not just constructed roles. He firmly establishes it as a dream first, but there are a few things that hint at that they have actually entered a separate universe: Taichi mentions having had the same dream at the end, and the beams Jon fires from his gun actually damage Omi's clothing.
- The Backstage for Azuma's [Endless Thirst] SSR also has Azuma pulled into a universe where the Nocturnality characters are real... but it was all a dream. Or was it?
- Homare often invokes this trope with his Arbitrary Skepticism. While he has found and used the Loupe of Sincerity in Act 4, whenever supernaturals and magic are involved after the incident, he often tries to rebut their existence with a logical explanation. An instance is in his [Yugen Fox Spirit] backstage, in which a kitsune probably passes behind him while he has his photo taken, but he insists that the nine tails are just blurred afterimages.
- Mixed Animal Species Team: 2020's April Fools' celebration has all the Mankai members becoming animals. Each troupe has their own theme.
- Spring: Squirrel (Sakuya), Deer (Masumi), Goat (Tsuzuru), Red Panda (Itaru), Alpaca (Citron), Rabbit (Chikage)
- Summer: Camel (Tenma), Fennec Fox (Yuki), Sand Cat (Muku), Antelope (Misumi), Giraffe (Kazunari), Kangaroo (Kumon)
- Autumn: Leopard (Banri), Sloth (Juza), Capybara (Taichi), Elephant (Omi), Tibetan Sand Fox (Sakyo), Parrot (Azami)
- Winter: Ermine (Tsumugi), Polar Bear (Tasuku), Penguin (Hisoka), Arctic Owl (Homare), Arctic Fox (Azuma), Reindeer (Guy)
- Noodle Incident: One of Hisoka's Side Stories starts like this:
- Tsumugi: ...and that is where Tasuku threw a tantrum because he didn't like cheese.
- Not the Intended Use: Some off-attribute cards may fall into this, as link skill boost is an important part of efficient event grinding, even more so than the raw stats of the cards alone. This is especially apparent for [Bouquet Full of Wishes] Tsumugi SSR from Say I Do tryout, who has good Ac stat despite being a Dr card, even higher than his in-attribute [Young Playboy] SR, even if unbloomed. Due to the lack of Ac SSR Tsumugi in the global server until later on and how often Tsumugi is needed for optimum Ac builds after the addition of Azaminote , the card will be used more frequently for the Ac than the Dr stat.
- Power Creep: Future cards always have better stats. When the game has just started out, the main stat of an SSR is 6190 at maximum. As the game progresses, the main stat hits 7029 at maximum. Future cards are also needed to activate Act 2 and Act 3 link skills.
- Played with when it comes to link skills. While link skills from Act 2 onwards have additional 3% boost compared to the Act 1 counterpart, they need Act 2 cards and beyond. Some link skills also gain additional members for bigger boost, but the builds revolving them are difficult to set up and may end up with less multiplier due to the lack of synergy with other link skills.
- Scream Discretion Shot: In Homare's [A Heartfelt Resolution] backstage, Homare accidentally spilled calligraphy ink on Tasuku. A very angry Tasuku approached a terrified Homare, who begged Tasuku to settle their dispute peacefully...which didn't work. Cue Homare screaming, and the scene cuts to Izumi commenting about this being a rough start for the new year.
- Happens again in Homare's [Peerless LIVE] backstage. After excitedly describing his regime for Homare, which is putting weights on Homare's abs and making him do 300 squats, Tasuku reassures Homare that he knows what to do and drags Homare off to muscle training. Cue Homare screaming, and the scene cuts to Izumi believing in Tasuku and wishing Homare luck.
- Shout-Out: In act 3, the chapter Jailhouse Lock doubled as a Stealth Pun for Jailhouse Rock.
- Shown Their Work: The miniscule details of Musashi and Kojiro in Die by the Sword match the real life counterparts. Musashi's sprite carries two swords, whereas Kojiro is consistently depicted with a longer katana in the theater version. The SSR card for Guy, who plays Kojiro, also has "Swallow Reversal at Daybreak" as the adlib skill, alluding to real life Kojiro's Signature Move.
- The constellations in one of the backgrounds of Hisoka's [Mankai Birthday] birthday more or less match the real life positioning of constellations.
- Simple, yet Awesome: The Mahjong Club + Mature Onigiri Appreciators build for Dr gives 60% boost to the team, one of the highest possible boost in general, needs only act 1 cards to build, and works with any support character.
- Small Role, Big Impact: According to Moment of Winter magazine, Homare never aspired to be a poet back then, but he just happened to become a poet. Why did he become one then? Because of the zealous support from an editor. Said editor only appears in backstage and does not even have a name. Without him, Homare would never have been the renowned poet everyone knows.