Manga Up!

Square Enix’s manga platform MANGA UP! goes live for global audience despite problems

When most people hear Square Enix, they think of video games, but they’ve also been in the manga world for a long time. After Square and Enix merged in 2003, they kept their Gangan imprint and have now released the mobile app MANGA UP! for fans outside of Japan.

Available on devices running Android and Apple iOS, MANGA UP! is home to over 160 titles with a hundred new English translated volumes, and new chapters shortly after they release in Japan. This version of MANGA UP! is free to download worldwide with additional in-app purchases for new content.

Fans in Japan have had access to MANGA UP! since 2017 where it has seen over 19 million downloads and this success has shown Square Enix it was ready for a global launch.

Popular manga available on MANGA UP! include favourites:

  • Fullmetal Alchemist by Hiromu Arakawa
  • The Case Study of Vanitas by Jun Mochizuki
  • Daemons of the Shadow Realm by Hiromu Arakawa
  • Toilet-bound Hanako-kun by AidaIro
  • Soul Eater by Atsushi Ohkubo
  • My Dress-Up Darling by Shinichi Fukuda
  • Pandora Hearts by Jun Mochizuk
  • The Apothecary Diaries written by Natsu Hyuuga, illustrated by Nekokurage, compiled by Itsuki Nanao, and character designs by Touco Shino

The launch of MANGA UP! was not without issues. Fans quickly pointed out comically placed black bars to censor clothed characters, and a strange pricing structure for reading individual chapters. While Square Enix responded with a statement regarding the censorship to the official MANGA UP! Twitter account, users continued to voice their displeasure.

Source: Square Enix press release

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