Softonic review

Arcade football game for the Captain Tsubasa series

Captain Tsubasa: Rise of New Champions is a football arcade video game that lets you step into the soles of titular character Captain Tsubasa and his teammates as they aim for glory in the big leagues. Developed by Tamsoft and published by Bandai Namco, this video game adaptation of the 2018 Captain Tsubasa anime series is the first console title of the popular franchise released after ten years. 

Eyes on the goal

Captain Tsubasa is a Japanese manga series originally created by Yōichi Takahashi back in 1981. The series mainly revolved around the sport of association football and focused on the life of Tsubasa Oozora and his growth as a football player. Tsubasa starts as a talented grade-school player who dreams of winning the FIFA World Cup for Japan one day. 

The manga covers his relationship with his friends, teammates, rivals, and his gradual climb from top ace of Japan to one of the most prominent players in the international scene. Due to Captain Tsubasa’s popularity, it got adapted as an anime series and even spawned dozens of video games across various platforms. 

Since football games are a popular enough subcategory of sports games—the likes of which the FIFA and PES series capitalize on every year—Captain Tsubasa comes back to the stage to accompany the anime reboot of 2018 and introduce it to a new generation of fans. 

Get some moves

Captain Tsubasa: Rise of New Champions is considered an “arcade football” game and offers an action system that allows anyone to enjoy the game’s football battles. In this title, you can easily make the super plays that Captain Tsubasa is known for with just simple controls. The usual core mechanics of football games are present in the controls, but Captain Tsubasa: Rise of New Champions emphasizes on unique character actions called Spirit Gauge, Moves, and Special Skills. 

When you control a player on the field, they have their own Spirit Gauge that allows you to perform different Moves. Moves, on the other hand, are your core weapons. These can range from goal kicks to ball dribbles and will consume some of the Spirit Gauge to be executed. Unlike other football games, you can’t keep doing these tricks all willy-nilly. The Spirit Gauge is your player’s stamina and morale, and you need to use your Moves properly to avoid wasting Spirit. 

A popular feature of anime football is the existence of Special Skills, which are the characters’ signature moves—complete with their anime-style close-up cutscene—that can turn the tide of battle depending on the conditions needed to activate them. There are other necessary actions, as well, like dribbles, tackles, blocks, passes, shots—and a cool team-shared Spirit Gauge called the “V Zone” that can boost other gauge rates for a limited time.

Aim for the top

If you’re a fan of Captain Tsubasa and have been itching to live through it like how the anime series portrays it, then Captain Tsubasa: Rise of New Champions is the title for you. It’s available for PC, PlayStation 4, and Nintendo Switch, and even features an all-new upgraded animation that still displays the series’ classic cartoon-style shading. Not only that, but you can play as the rival teams of the series and get to know their members, too. 


  • Beautiful 3D anime-style animation
  • Short character voiceovers during moves
  • Playable rival teams
  • Easy-to-play Move controls


  • Running animation seems a bit out of sync with movements
  • Commentary subtitles get overlooked during the matches
  • Character voiceovers clash with commentary voiceover
  • Little-to-no variation in angles for Special Skill cutscenes

Program available in other languages

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