Psyren: Series Review

The final volume of Psyren is out! Let's take a look at this complex and intriguing sci-fi series.
By June 17, 2014

The end of the world seems like a bleak possibility to Ageha Yoshina. Living out his days as an angst-ridden, violence-prone Japanese High-Schooler, Ageha remains apathetic toward his own future, living life without thought for the consequences…at least until he finds a mysterious phone card. Now, forced to journey to a monstrous world from which escape is only temporary, he and the friends he makes on the battlefield now fight to rebuild the future that he once took for granted!

Take part in this epic tale about reclaiming lost hope and proving that nothing’s over until it’s over. The whole, complete series is available...NOW!

Psychics, Psi-Chicks and Side-Kicks


A punk with a gift for fighting, Ageha has completely bought into the modern era's cynical outlook on least until he realizes how bleak the future really is if people like him do nothing.



Time in Psyren has changed the gentle Sakurako into a shell-shocked warrior. Even her friends know how capable of a fighter she is and how deadly an enemy. Do. NOT. Get. Her. Angry.



Despite his surly attitude, Asaga’s quite the gentle giant. He would go to the ends of the earth for his friends, if that’s what it takes. And it regularly does...



Teenage heartthrob Oboro Mochizuki is not one to take life seriously. Not even when he's thrown into the world of Psyren. Or gained amazing healing powers. “Serious” is seriously not his thing.



A shameless mooch and ladies’ man, Kabuto can only think of saving his own skin when he gets to Psyren. But sometimes cowardice pays off, especially when it evolves into battle-geared precognition… 


Dial "P" for…

Ageha starts off more interested in picking fights than actually doing something productive in his own life. He doesn’t think much about the strange red phone card with the word “Psyren” printed on it, nor the rumors about a mysterious being called Nemesis Q said to spirit people away to a strange world. At least, not until his childhood friend Sakurako vanishes without a trace.

His only clues to finding her were her desperate plea for help…and the chance discovery sometime before that she possesses a Psyren card identical to his own. It’s not much, but since he has no other leads, Ageha pops his Psyren card into the nearest payphone. Soon after, Nemesis Q whisks him away to Psyren, a dystopic desert filled with monsters called Taboo.

There, Ageha recognizes two familiar faces—an old friend Hiryu and a heavily-wounded Sakurako. In a rather dark twist, he discovers two facts: they will have to return to Psyren as many times as it takes to use up their cards’ remaining value, and Psyren isn’t another world… but earth in the near future.

Hanging on a Wire

On the plus side, Psyren survivors soon awaken their latent psionic abilities, leaving Ageha and Hiryu to quickly develop their own powers.

Ageha’s powers manifest as the Melzez’s Door—a strange black sphere that absorbs Psionic power. It’s pretty cool, kinda like having your own personal black hole. The power is great, but like Ageha himself, it’s also unpredictable and almost uncontrollable. Only with vast amounts of willpower, and by relying on the help of those with greater experience, can Ageha turn this all-but-literal wrecking ball into a usable tool.

Ageha finds mentors in Matsuri Yagumo, a “graduated” Psyren traveler, and Elmore Tenjuin, a millionaire psychic raising her own orphanage full of psionic kids. Another journey to Psyren grants two additional allies: the eccentric Oboro and reluctant Kabuto.

Paved with Good Intentions

In what I consider one of the more unique plotlines in modern manga, the characters sleuth in both the past and present to discover what the heck happened to turn the world into Psyren and what they can do to stop their bleak future. They eventually discover the culprits behind the world’s apocalyptic state: an all-psionic organization dubbed W.I.S.E. These people are bad news, with powers capable of leveling cities even in the present, where they are at their weakest. Worse still, Psyren is a much nearer in the future then they’d realized: as in, ten years ahead of the present!

With no time to lose, the heroes begin to alter the course of events. Discoveries made in both times let the heroes alter how events play out in the present and alter certain aspects of the future, saving key lives and enabling a human resistance movement. However, they realize that merely altering the order of events will not be enough to prevent the apocalypse outright… especially since the primary catalyst is a massive, sentient meteor (dubbed Oroboros) set to engulf the planet completely!

The Gift of the (A)Magi

W.I.S.E. has two leaders: Miroku Amagi, who sits at the top… and a strange, androgynous woman named Mithra, whose mere existence seems impossible. These two control a power far greater than any of the others, and since Amagi’s top enforcer can build buildings with telekinesis so fast that one minute behind schedule is a significant lapse, that’s saying something! The truth behind Nemesis Q further complicates things—Grigori 07, a.k.a. Amagi’s twin sister, who began this game to learn the truth about her shattered world. Yet it seems that there are still answers to find, for Amagi has new plans to rebuild the world with new, entirely psionic life forms and purge humanity once and for all!


In spite of the impossible odds, Ageha’s father (a super psionist in the future) has a solution: Nova power. Previously, there were only three known types of Psionic power: Sense (the ability to see and manipulate the minds of others), Enhance (which allows the user to bolster standard physical attributes) and Blast, raw offense. Nova, a power reachable only by a few (including Miroku Amagi himself), breaks the barrier between body and spirit, vastly enhancing a person’s power at a massive cost to both life and selfhood. It takes everything both Ageha and Sakurako have to create and embrace this power.

Ending the Old End

Volume 16 of Psyren opens with Ageha and Grigori 07 confronting Miroku Amagi. Amagi, betrayed and furious at his sister, curses her for her actions and bitterly demands to know why such powerful psionists reject him and his worldview.

But Ageha’s in a rage of his own - Amagi has killed billions, literally billions, and made the lives that remained utterly miserable. Ageha is done taking crap from him and now that he has the power of Nova and Melzez alike, Ageha transforms into a terrifying shadow-beast.

Yet even as they duke it out, Mithra reveals she held the strings to the struggle all along. As the avatar of a celestial horror, the Star Eater Quat Nevath (a.k.a. the Oroboros Meteor!), she had instigated the events in both timelines by encouraging Amagi’s attempt to restart life on earth and granting him the power and technology to do so. Ageha’s Nova powers gives him a chance against Amagi, but Quat Nevath emerges to absorb all the energy he had collected before engulfing earth itself!

Beginning a New Start

Yet Nemesis Q quickly bounces the heroes back to their own timeline, having finally learned the truth she had so desperately craved. Thanking the heroes, she chooses to give them the chance to save their own timeline. They arrive one year from the time from which they left… and without them, W.I.S.E. has spread its influence just as they had in the past. It’s too late to stop them from devastating the city… but the world’s still standing!

Gotta say, after all the characters have been through, I was biting my nails at this point. The stakes have never been higher since the end of the world is inches away, and the only thing W.I.S.E. and Mithra/Quat Nevath need are the fallen “tears” from Quat Nevath’s main body. With them, Mithra’s body can call Quat Nevath into proper orbit and crush the world, ensuring that Psyren comes to pass after all! Thus begins the final battle—the final stand to avert the cataclysm and permanently save the future!

In Retrospect

If you’re looking for a high-quality shonen manga but aren’t ready to tackle one of our well-known long-runners, Psyren’s a good option. This crazy manga is an especially fun romp into dark places few manga artists not in the Seinin level dare tread. The characters are mostly fresh and unique, marking only one of the many ways that Iwashiro Sensei isn’t afraid to break away from convention. I really dug the bleak framing too. Psyren really dares to go the extra mile and gets far closer to the abyss than most of its peers. In the end, it’s a very solidly shonen story about how teamwork, hope and perseverance can save the world even when it seems truly impossible.

Pick up Psyren today! For more details, click HERE!

by Chris Turner