Ni-Ki-Oh! News

Ni-Ki-Oh! 20th Anniversary

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Twenty years ago this past week - at 2 PM on Saturday, August 17, 2002 - the first ever episode of Ni-Ki-Oh! aired. The series combined documentary and fictional scripted and retroscripted content, as we followed a boy named Niki participating in a real local Duel Monsters card tournament, where most other participants had also taken on personae inspired by characters from the Yu-Gi-Oh! anime. Beginning with this tournament, for a time, Ni-Ki-Oh! was a way of life for all involved.

Ni-Ki-Oh! ran for over 2 seasons from 2002-2004, oscillating between being a parody of Yu-Gi-Oh! and forging its own path. With the first season's airing, the world only began to see the height of the Ni-Ki-Oh! craze, with the appearance of various spinoffs, promotional TV spots, brands allegedly "sponsoring" the show, music videos, and people clamoring for a chance at a guest appearance.

Ni-Ki-Oh! entered hiatus during the middle of the 3rd season and never returned, despite never being officially cancelled, suffering from principal scheduling conflicts, as well as problems in post-production. In all, 22 episodes aired in special screenings, although photography for 28 was nearly completed, with 7 more having been scripted -- well short of the 98 episodes that had been outlined. 4 specials aired in various venues, and countless other features and featurettes, such as cast interviews and vanity Duel Monsters cards, were made available through Ni-Ki-Oh! DVDs.

Over the years, many episodes have received multiple versions. Most notorious of these versions was of the first season, whose VHS master was lost, leading to completely different edits for the aptly named DVD release of Ni-Ki-Oh! The Lost Episodes in 2004. The original season was presumed lost until it was rediscovered again in 2022.

In celebration of Ni-Ki-Oh!'s 20th birthday, we will be releasing high-definition anniversary remasters of the beloved series Saturdays after 2 PM. Famously, series cast member Joseph Justus joked in an interview that Ni-Ki-Oh! had "like no special effects." For the anniversary editions, all episodes have been re-edited as they were first imagined -- no longer constrained by budgetary or technological limitations -- using AI, improved sound design, and modern visual effects. But when appropriate, we will also be releasing remasters of the previous edits as well, for a comparison of how the series has evolved over time.

Today, we unveil the 20th anniversary edition of season 1 episode 1, entitled "No One to Duel." Creators frequently described that this episode was shot as an equipment test for a then days-old 8mm video camera, and that the show was only conceived for series after the fact. As such, this episode contains sequences using a variety of in-camera effects, as well as long durations of out-of-focus footage.

Finally, we would be remiss if we did not pay respect to the creator of the Yu-Gi-Oh! story, Kazuki Takahashi, who sadly passed away this summer at the age of 60. His work was our inspiration, and he will always hold a special place in our hearts.

TV-14: MV
Seizure warning! This program contains flashing lights.

Ni-Ki-Oh! Webisodes

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Two weeks ago, a very strange thing started happening on the site's forums. Some seemingly random videos were posted by different forum members, some of whom have not been active on the forum in years.

These videos were labeled as the Ni-Ki-Oh! Ad CampaignRead more

Waffle Iron Report I

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With the final arrival of Final Genesis RC1 & RC2 this holiday season, the first release of the Ni-Ki-Oh! 4th Season DVDs will almost immediately follow. This means that The Rare Hunters can be expected within a month after RC2.

However, due to the specific… Read more

Increased Final Genesis Expenses

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The site was down for the past two weeks because of an altered IP address that broke database access. Because our service provider didn't think it was necessary to tell us about the change, the site remained down while we were under the impression… Read more

RC1 and the World of Delays

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Since Final Genesis was first announced back in 2004, there have been loads upon loads of delays including character model development, system upgrades, system failures, etc. that only proceeded to push the release date further and further back, months… Read more

The Looming Advent of Final Genesis

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As the days grow closer and closer to the projected release date of Final Genesis alpha, the stages of final animation and post-production have begun. An unsubtitled alpha release-candidate for <img src="Ni-Ki-Oh!/images/n-title_tiny.gif">… Read more

Welcome Back, Ni-Ki-Oh!

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Later this evening, Ni-Ki-Oh! star Nicky Phils returns from his two-month vacationing at Yale University and in Tennessee. At Yale Nick studied Philosophy and Single Variable Calculus for 5 weeks, and then took a trip to Appalachian Tennessee to offer his assistance… Read more

Ni-Ki-Oh! Production

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Those of you who have access to the Network Partner forums may already know this, but this past weekend Ni-Ki-Oh! entered production for its fourth season.

A little recap of the Ni-Ki-Oh! saga:
Season 1 was the Regional Championship tournament in which the characters… Read more

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