No Game No Life (Episode 3) – The Battle for Elkia

Just as Kurami Zell is about to be crowned King of Elkia, Sora and Shiro crash the ceremony. They expose her as an elven-backed cheater, and challenge her to a game.


After Kurami Zell is confronted by Sora and Shiro, she accepts their challenge. Kurami suspects that the siblings are backed by another magical race just as she is, and so she has a game prepared that is designed to give her the advantage. A game with hidden rules.

The game is chess. The catch is that the chess pieces each have wills of their own. As a result, their movements and willingness to fight are contingent on their morale.

The game starts out with Shiro taking command. She proceeds to play as if it were a standard game of chess. However, she begins to encounter issues as pieces start to disobey orders in order to preserve their own lives. Sora takes over. After giving his pieces an inspiring speech, he begins issuing blanket orders and changes the game to a regular strategy game, pieces no longer confined to the board.

Unable to compete with Sora’s troops, Kurami is forced to activate a cheat that allows her pieces to convert Sora’s pieces to her side. To counter this, Sora jumps onto the game board and wins Kurami’s queen over to his side, and the queen then begins to win more troops over to his side. The episode ends with the outcome of the battle not yet decided, but it’s fairly clear that Sora and Shiro are on the verge of victory.

Episode 3 Highlights

Most of the episode this time around was focused on the game itself, so we didn’t get very much fan service at all. The game itself though was very exciting to watch, with constant developments. This episode did a great job of showing us Sora and Shiro’s strengths and weaknesses, with Sora being a more charismatic gamer, while Shiro is a more calculated gamer. Together they managed to accomplish a great deal in this episode (although I’ll admit that Sora did most of the work, given the type of game it ended up being).

This episode was also a good example of how creative the anime can be with the games we see. Not all games have to be just regular poker, chess, rock-paper-scissors, et cetera. Since Disboard is a world of magic, the games themselves can be pretty much anything. Which is great, because if the entire anime was just games of poker or checkers they would get pretty boring soon enough.

So to sum up, we didn’t get much ecchi, but the anime really flexed its muscles this episode in terms of what we can expect in terms of games and action moving forward.

Other Posts in the Series


  1. I’m five episodes in now, and I think that I can sum up why this show works.

    It’s Shiro.

    Without her, the show would just be another Isekai NEET power fantasy, but Shirou adds a new layer of chemistry and comedy. Fanservice Loli-bait? Probably, but she also makes the show work.

    • Shiro adds a lot of depth to the main “character” like that for sure, although Sora definitely is the front-man of their duo.

      • Indeed, she is very much the “background” part of their joined character, but if the show was just about Sora, then honest it would be annoying, trite and overdone. Having his little sister as his other “half” gives the series it’s own unique vibe and helps pave over that issue.

        • Plus she’s just so cute. I love the way eyes are drawn in this anime. Can’t get enough closeups of Shiro’s face.

          Plus they use that dynamic really well throughout the series, it’s definitely a huge plus over the competition, in addition to their unique world design with it’s own rules that I love.

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