Z/X -Zillions of enemy X- or Z/X (ゼクス Zekusu) for short, is a trading card game and media franchise created by Broccoli in collaboration with Nippon Ichi Software. Its game design was designed by Yūhodō.
It is marketed as a "free-to-start" trading card game, where player is able to try and play the game with free cards available to pick in various card shops and download from their official website. Other than free cards, various commercial products is also available for player to choose from.
Z/X was first announced in an official presentation on 18 April 2012 as the industry's first "free-to-start TCG" and will also comprised of consumer game and online game in addition to the card game. The card game was released later in that month and the beginning of the next month in the form of the Free Card Decks, and are soon followed with various events including the first Heroic Saga.
The first commercial product as well as the first set of the card game, "Encounter with the Parallel Worlds", was released on 27 July 2012. Afterwards, the card game continue to expand with various new sets, including free cards and commercially released products. The success and popularity of the card game also allow it to expand into various media outside the originally planned platforms.
Outside of the marketing strategy, Z/X is also known for its various user participation type events where the actions of the participants will have an impact on the direction of the story—and subsequently the card game. The example of such events are Heroic Saga and Heroic Road.
- See also: Prologue
The story of Z/X is set in a future not so far from now. Gates to the five different parallel worlds suddenly appeared in the world, and inhabitants of those worlds (later known as "Z/X", an abbreviation of "Zillions of enemy X") start pouring from those gates to invade this world. The five parallel worlds are the different shape of the earth in future, and they fight against each others in the present in order to ensure the survival of their own future. Later, humanity received help in the form of a card-shaped device that able to capture and enslaved the Z/X. By using this device, humanity begin to fight for either their own or the five parallel worlds' future.
- See also: Playing Manual
Z/X is a turn-based 1 on 1 card game with a 3×3 squares playing field. Each player prepares their own 50-cards deck and starts the game with 4 Life. Player is able to summon "Z/X", the titular creatures of the game, into the playing field by paying its appropriate Cost and attack the opposing Z/X or player with it. A player win the game if the opponent's Life is reduced to 0.
The first manga adaptation of Z/X was serialized in V Jump magazine from September 2012 until October 2016. It follows Arato Kido, who gets involved in the conflict against Z/X due to a pure chance. All of the chapters has been collected into 6 tankōbon volume.
Another manga adaptation titled Z/X Code reunion was also serialized in V Jump magazine since September 2017. It is set in a different setting from Z/X main story and follows Azumi Kagamihara as the main protagonist.
The anime adaptation of Z/X is announced in December 2012. The adaptation, titled Z/X Ignition, aired from January to April 2014 for 12 episodes.
A new anime adaptation is announced in Akihabara Z/X Stream 2015 Spring event. It was later revealed as the adaptation of the Z/X Code reunion manga and is scheduled to air in Fall 2019.
Several games based on Z/X has been released. Z/X - Crusade of the Absolute Boundary is a card battle RPG developed by Nippon Ichi Software for the PS3 and featured a new story and a new set of protagonists. Z/X IGNITION - Rondo of the Five Worlds is an online web-based card battle game published by DMM and is also a tie-in with the Z/X Ignition anime.
A smartphone RPG titled Z/X Code OverBoost is announced in 2019.