Magical Battle Arena NEXT is a 3D aerial Fighting Game-type Doujin Game made by fly-system and Area-ZERO. It is the sequel to Magical Battle Arena, featuring many Magical Girls and mages from various different franchises.
Unlike the previous game, NEXT focuses on a two-on-two Tag Team system in two modes:
- Single battle, which is a one-on-one affair with your partner character acting as an Assist Character.
- Team battle, which is more of a two-on-two team battle.
Another difference between this and the previous game is the fact that it was released in two versions: Fantasy World Side, which features Touhou Project characters in their Touhou Sky Arena incarnations and Magical Girl Side, which has characters from various Magical Girl works. Both versions can be combined together to make a more complete game.
Like its predecessor, this game features a Story Mode, a Versus Mode, Survival, Training and online play via the Network mode. These are the following characters, grouped by what side they appear in, and their origin:
Fantasy World Side:
- From Touhou Project: Reimu Hakurei, Marisa Kirisame, Youmu Konpaku, Alice Margatroid, Yukari Yakumo, Reisen Udongein Inaba, Tenshi Hinanawi, Toyosatomimi no Miko
Magical Girl Side:
- From Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha: Nanoha Takamachi, Fate Testarossa-Harlaownnote
- From Cardcaptor Sakura: Sakura Kinomoto
- From Slayers: Lina Inverse
- From Magical Battle Arena: Nowel Diastasisnote
- From Fate/kaleid liner PRISMA☆ILLYA: Illyasviel "Illya" von Einzbern, Miyu Edelfelt
- From Slayers: Amelia Wil Tesla Saillune
- From Magical Witch Punie-chan: Punie Tanaka
Fantasy World Side was first released on August 16th, 2014 at Comic Market 86, with Magical Girl Side following it on August 14th, 2015 at Comic Market 88. The website for the game can be found here. In addition, a complete version of the game was released on August, 2017 at Comic Market 92. Go here for updates and patches for the games.
This game has examples of:
- Assist Character: The one-on-one mode sets your partner to act as this.
- Attack Drone: Alice can summon her dolls to act as options for her.
- Awesome, but Impractical: Once again, everyone's Desperation Attack; they can deal out lots of damage but often leave you exposed. It's especially egregious in Lina's case what with her Dragon Slave attack taking way longer to cast than everyone else's.
- Beam Spam: Bound to happen when using Nanoha, Miko, or Nowel...
- BFS: Tenshi's Sword of Hisou as well as Fate's Bardiche when doing Jet Zamber.
- Big Bad: Nowel, again.
- Dual Wielding: Youmu and her katanas Roukanken and Hakurouken.
- Excuse Plot: Like before, why are all the magical girls going around fighting each other? Who cares!? It's awesome to watch!
- Fanservice Pack: This seems to have happened to Nowel in between games, complete with Bare Your Midriff, Sexy Backless Outfit and Letting Her Hair Down.
- Finger Gun: This is how Reisen shoots at her opponents.
- Final Boss, New Dimension: Played straight for once with Nowel in Story Mode.
- Grievous Bottley Harm: Lina's dash attack has her smack her enemy with a glass bottle. Ouch.
- I Believe I Can Fly: Like in the previous game, flight's a necessity for everyone here.
- Magical Girl: You don't say?
- Massive Multiplayer Crossover
- Non-Standard Character Design: As opposed to the previous game where the Slayers characters were drawn just like everyone else, here they're drawn more in line with how they looked in the original source material (namely, a retro 90's-style look).
- One Game for the Price of Two: This game consists of two versions each with their own characters and stages and can be combined into one big game. Played with in that Fantasy World Side came out before Magical Girl Side.
- Pair the Spares: Like before, this is a non-romantic example: because both characters are the sole representatives of their respective franchises, Sakura and Punie are paired with each other in Story Mode.
- Parasol of Pain: Yukari uses her umbrella as a weapon here.
- Panty Fighter: Ayup.
- Spotlight-Stealing Crossover: Half of the cast consists of Touhou characters whereas the other series represented only get one or two characters.note
- Stance System: Back with a vengeance; there's Fate with her mid-range Lightning and close-range Sonic forms and Illya and Miyu who can use their Class Cards to take on their respective Archer and Saber Install forms.
- Tag Team: The main crux of the gameplay.
- Theme Music Power-Up: Anytime you activate your character's Super Mode, the background music will change into a version with vocals.
- Thinking Up Portals: Yukari and her gaps, which she can use to either damage her foes or do some serious Teleport Spam, playing mind games on them.
- Tomboy and Girly Girl: Punie's the tomboy when serious while Sakura's the girly girl. Otherwise, both act as girly girls.
- Ultimate Showdown of Ultimate Destiny: Just like the prequel, this is pretty much the only reason why this game was made.
- Wrestler in All of Us: As opposed to the other characters who use ranged attacks, Punie is instead a close-range grappler who specializes in rather unorthodox wrestling moves. Princess Argentine backbreaker, anyone?
- Wutai: A few of the stages set in Gensokyo are this, such as the Hakurei Shrine, Hakugyokurou, Eientei and the Divine Spirit Mausoleum.