Rune Soldier (魔法戦士リウイ Mahō Senshi Riui?, lit. Magical Soldier Louie) is an anime and manga series based on the original novel series by Ryo Mizuno, which features soldier Louie as the hero. The series takes place on the continent of Alecrast on the world called Forcelia, and is related to the novel, anime, and manga series Sword World. It is a sibling series to Record of Lodoss War (which is also directed by Mizuno), taking place on a continent north of Lodoss Island.
- A member of the Magician's Guild in Ohfun and the adopted son of Carwes the guild's master. Muscular and a little on the dumb side; Louie is prone to getting drunk in bars, chasing after girls, and brawling when he should be studying his magic. As a result, he tends to use brute force instead of magic, much to the chagrin of his companions. (for example, on his first adventure, Louie lost his temper when a troop of goblins clubbed him on the head and then broke his wand when he used it to club them back). Despite his shortcomings as a wizard, Louie possesses a strong sense of justice and is unfailingly loyal to those he considers his friends. Louie's stupidity mostly results as a lack of planning and forethought, he's actually a lot smarter than he usually appears to be, often figuring things out that others overlook. While it isn't mentioned in the anime (other than Louie's strong resemblance to him) it is strongly hinted in the manga that Louie is the illegitimate son of the King. Anime voices: Katsuyuki Konishi (Japanese), Jason Douglas (English), Jon Goiri (Spanish)
- Adventurer and priestess to Mylee, god of war. Naive and idealistic, Melissa's dream is to serve a chosen hero of her patron god which of course causes her great despair when Mylee reveals her destined champion is Louie (in the anime she frequently says "This is against my will" several times an episode). Throughout the course of the series, Melissa gradually begins to realize that perfect heroes don't exist and by the end of the series not only fully accepts Louie as her chosen hero but may also have developed feelings for him as well. Anime voices: Kikuko Inoue (Japanese), Shelley Calene-Black (English), Jaione Intsausti (Spanish)
- Adventurer and former soldier of Ohfun. She has a rather cool demeanor but Louie's stupid behavior tends to push her to the point of violence. A highly adept warrior, Genie's favorite weapon is a broadsword as big as herself and likewise is strong enough to slug it out on the same level as Louie. As the story progresses, Genie comes to respect Louie as a friend when she finds he unlike most men doesn't look down on her because she is a woman and even teaches him basic sword fighting. Anime voices: Minami Takayama (Japanese), Christine M. Auten (English), Maribel Legarreta (Spanish)
- Adventurer, thief and part-time job worker with a fanatical obsession for money. When not adventuring, Merrill is either raising funds for the next adventure through various part-time jobs or looking at any scheme to get rich, including running booths at various events in Ohfun. Like Genie, Merril is driven crazy by Louie's behavior and frequently explodes in violence at him. Anime voices: Tomoko Kawakami (Japanese), Allison Keith (English), Ana Bego Egileor(Spanish)
- Member of the Magician's Guild and Louie's friend. Despite many attempts to get Louie on a date, especially considering her rather voluptuous frame, their relationship remains platonic and open much to her dismay. Although highly knowledgeable in magic theory and magical item lore, her chief area of study, Ila herself claims to be inferior to Louie in raw magical prowess. She also tends to go to pieces and pass out whenever trouble surfaces on adventures she tags along with. In the manga, Ila's character is more sultry than in the anime and she especially enjoys getting Louie flustered by flirting with him. Anime voices: Akiko Yajima (Japanese), Jenny Strader (English), Ana Tere Bengoetxea (Spanish)
- A beautiful elf girl they met while journeying through a forest. Anime voices: Fumiko Orikasa (Japanese), Kelli Cousins (English)
- Anna, Gannet, and Joan
- Three young teenage priestess of Mylee that hold Melissa in esteem. They have a low opinion of Louie and see him as a burden to Melissa during the entirety of the anime series They don't appear in the manga.
Joan: Ryoko Nagata (Japanese), Nora Stein (English), Maribel Legarreta (Spanish)
0. 魔法戦士リウイ0 (ISBN 4829115009 March 25, 2003)
- A side-story about Genie before she meets Louie, Merrill, and Melissa.
1. 魔法戦士リウイ1 (ISBN 4829128453 October 25, 1998)
2. 魔法戦士リウイ2 (ISBN 4829128674 February 25, 1999)
3. 魔法戦士リウイ3 (ISBN 4829128917 June 25, 1999)
4. 魔法戦士リウイ4 (ISBN 4829129328 December 25, 1999)
5. 魔法戦士リウイ5 (ISBN 482912959X April 25, 2000)
6. 魔法戦士リウイ6 (ISBN 4829129948 August 30, 2000)
7. 魔法戦士リウイ7 (ISBN 4829113375 March 25, 2001)
8. 魔法戦士リウイ8 (ISBN 4829113693 July 25, 2001)
9. 魔法戦士リウイ9 (ISBN 4829114053 February 25, 2002)
1. 剣の国の魔法戦士( オーファン王国が舞台)
- ソードワールド・ノベル 剣の国の魔法戦士(ISBN 4829124776 February 15, 1993)
- Old edition
- 魔法戦士リウイ 剣の国の魔法戦士(ISBN 4829113723 September 20, 2001)
- New edition
2. 魔法戦士リウイ 湖岸の国の魔法戦士
ザイン王国が舞台。(June 1996-March 1997 serialization)
- (Old edition) (August 25, 1997)
- (Corrected edition) (September 1, 2001)
3. 魔法戦士リウイ 砂塵の国の魔法戦士(ISBN 4829115564 September 25, 2003))
1. 魔法戦士リウイ ファーラムの剣 賢者の国の魔法戦士 (ISBN 4829116331 August 25, 2004)
2. 魔法戦士リウイ ファーラムの剣 呪縛の島の魔法戦士 (ISBN 4829116986 March 25, 2005)
3. 魔法戦士リウイ ファーラムの剣 牧歌の国の魔法戦士 (ISBN 4829117982 February 25, 2006)
4. 魔法戦士リウイ ファーラムの剣 鋼の国の魔法戦士 (ISBN 4829118849 December 20, 2006)
- Ongoing serialization starting July 2006.
The Rune Soldier anime consists of 24 episodes. The episodes are either a stand-alone adventure, or a story arc consisting of multiple episodes. In general the plot of each episode or story arc revolves around the group looking for, finding, and participating in an adventure. Probably due to interpretation or stylistic differences most episodes have a verbal spoken and written name that does not match exactly.
Episodes 1-4 represent a single story arc.
1 The Hero Descends
The episode introduces the main characters, beginning with Melissia, Genie, and Merrill. While investigating a ruin they indicate their need for a magician to join them to open a magically sealed door. Three days later they have traveled to the town of Ohfun. Merrill and Genie individually meet Louie with mixed results. Merrill believes him to be a pervert because he was being chased by a group of angry women and that he falls, while thanking her, and pulls her shorts down. Genie meets Louie while she is being confronted by a group of their rival adventurers. They claim she has insulted them by running into one of them and not apologizing. Louie appears, impossibly wedged in a slight opening between the town wall and a building. He precedes to attack the three men using his fists. Genie sees Louie as a reckless thrill seeker.
Later Melissia, Merrill, and Genie have meet up at a tavern. Merrill reveals she has learned of a pub that magicians frequent. The next night they have met up at the pub, and approach Ila. She in turn introduces them to Louie. All three refuse Louie in joining them. Ila and Louie inform them that Louie is likely the only magician willing to join them. As Louie tries to convince them of his worth he irritates Genie and she confronts him. He refuses to back down and pulls out a magical device, that he drops and damages the pub. Luckily he was the only person left in the pub as everyone else fled. Later still the three girls meet at apparently a new tavern, they are drinking and angrily discuss Louie's incompetence. Melissia then reveals she will be undergoing her "Sacred Ritual of Revealing," the next day. This is a Mylee rite that reveals a Champion to whom the priestess must serve. She envisions a dashing knight, and gets lost in her daydream of their adventures together.
The next day opens on Melissia giving a sermon on Champions and heroes. She then speaks with Anna, Ganet, and Joan, three younger priestesses who believe she will be shown her champion. She calmly advises them that it may not be successful, and then when alone giggles and sings about getting her champion. The next scene shows Louie being released from jail and we find his adoptive father Master Carwes, arranged for his early release. He goes to the magician's guild and tries to attend classes but cannot get the idea of adventuring out of his mind. He and Iila talk in his dorm room, about his apparent lack of talent and dedication to his studies. As they speak about the three adventurers, they both conclude that the adventurers are looking for a magician to complete their group. Louie leaps to the conclusion that they want his help, but cannot ask him directly. He tells Ila the only member of the group he knows how to find is Melissia since she is a Mylee priestess. Genie and Merrill meet up at Genie's home outside Ohfun and their conversation turns to Louie. They decide to go see Melissia to see how her "Ritual of Revealing" has gone. Melissia is shown entering a sacred room of the Mylee temple with Chief Priestess Jenny officiating the rite. Melissia now alone and nude enters a pool of waist high water facing a statue of Mylee. To her delight, the deity speaks to her stating the next person she sees will be her champion. During the rite Louie arrives at the temple and is driven off by the three young priestesses. He then meets Genie and Merrill and after Genie pulls her sword on him, he runs away with Merrill and Genie in pursuit. As he navigates the temple he is constantly confronted by and attacked by a small army of young priestesses. He finally evades them and climbs to the top of the temple. Genie and Merrill are already there and begin to attack him. Louie pulls out his magic wand and begins to cast a spell, which backfires and destroys part of the temple roof. He falls through and lands in front of Melissia. Melissia screams, realizing Louie is her destined champion.
2. First Time (written title) / The First Experience (verbal title) The girls confront Louie in Genie's home and Melissia reveals her revelation that Louie is her champion. Much to her despair. Even Louie doubts the validity of this revelation. He then uses it to convince the girls to take him on their adventure. Melissia indicates she is forced to go with him if it his wish. In preparing for the adventure Louie receives a charm for his magic wand, from his adoptive father Master Carwes, and sword training from Genie. Upon leaving for the adventure Louie receives what will become a recurring task of carrying the party's equipment and provisions. Upon reaching the ruins Louie is left to move rubble from the entrance, only Genie helps out with moving the final, and largest stone. Louie then attempts to open the sealed door with his magic, but is forced to read some cheat note to complete it. Upon entering and exploring the underground ruins, the group come to a dead end room and begin to search for secret doors, Louie, by luck alone, effortlessly finds a hidden door, and envisions finding a mountain of treasure that will earn him the affections of all three girls. Instead he finds a small group of monsters called goblins. He tries to flee and rejoin the girls who were on the other side of the room. When he is struck on the back of the head he loses control of himself and begins to brawl with the goblins. While he successfully defeats them, the girls have a running dialogue of their despair at Louie not accepting his role as their magician, instead of their fighter. Louis breaks his magic wand by using it like a club. In the end they find no treasure, but Louie comments on his happiness to have been on the adventure. This provokes Merrill to punch him.
3. The Big Melee (written title) / The Big Scuffle (verbal title) The group returns to Ohfun. The girls are still angry from not finding any treasure and uses the fact that Louie needs a wand to use magic to abandon him until he can find a replacement wand. The girls are individually shown complaining about Louie to people they know in town. They meet up an inn and Ila and Louie meet them. Ila proceeds to give Louie three useless magical items: a cloak that can make him invisible, but is too small, a box containing an illusion of a cooked chicken, and a whistle than can call demons to your location, but does not allow you to control them. When Merrill comments on how useless each one is, Ila comments that they would be more useful than non-existent teammates. This angers the three girls and Louie, perceiving their hostility, quickly excuses himself and Ila. This leads to the girls "grudgingly" helping Louie out when he decides to stock up on gear and get the wood required for his new wand. In the end, not being able to live with Louie's probable death upon entering the Phantom Forest alone hanging on their collective conscience, they decide to accompany him.
4. The Phantom Forest (written title) / The Demon Forest (verbal title) The group has made their way into the forest and are finishing up a group of monsters summoned when Louie blew the whistle. After cleaning up and preparing to obtain the wood he needs, Louie notices a presence and gives chase to it, despite the girls' protests. A chase ensues, and Louie is soon captured by the presence - a female elf named Ceresia. Breaking free of his bonds, he turns the tables on her and captures her, after which the team questions her. Louie's simple nature soon finds the party prisoners in the elven village whose lands the forest is a part of. Not wanting to see what vile fate the elves have in store for them, and to show them that humans are not monsters the elves thought them to be, Louie blows the whistle, summoning more monsters, and causing the village to panic. The party takes advantage of the confusion by breaking out, and instead of running for it Louie beats the summoned monsters with a wild boar carcass and later with his fists. They bid Ceresia farewell and return to Ohfun.
5. Inexperienced Extracurricular Activities One of Melissa's duties as a priestess of Mylee is to help train the young priestesses. Melissa goes to some ruins with 3 trainees to help them get experience in defeating monsters. Merill and Genie decide to come along for support and Louie, unable to resist the pull of adventure, tags along too. It turns out the ruins are infested with zombies, and once inside the floor colapses and Melissa and Louie get stuck together. They eventually find their way out, and the rest of the group leaves Louie floundering trying to find his magic wand.
6. Die For Love?
7. Merill's Jar Merill becomes so obsessed with a jar of money that she has Louie create a golem to protect it. It goes out of control, so Merill and Louie try to stop it before it throws it into a bottomless hotspring. However despite their best efforts, the jar is lost in the "bottomless" pit, and thus the group are poor once again.
8. A Tearful Festival of Mylee
Episodes 9 and 10 are part of the same story arc.
9. What Comes in Summer In the middle of a summer heat wave, it suddenly starts to snow. Louie and his band, accompanied by Ila and the elf Celesia journey to the Tower of the Four Great Magics, where Ila's former teacher is meddling with the balance of the elements.
10. The Tower of Four Great Magics Louie must use his sub-par magic skills to disarm the elemental weather machine and return balance to nature.
11. A True Hero Appears? Isabel, a fellow priestess of Mylee and rival to Melissa, has formed her own team with her valiant champion. The two adventuring teams are competing against each other to find the treasure lost in the cliffs.
12. Flowers of a Moonlit Night Louis and his cohorts help a young girl find a rare flower for her ailing grandmother. A flower only found in the magician's guild's guarded greenhouse.
13. The Fugue of the Female Warrior A look back into Genie's past as a knight of Ohfun as an old enemy marches close to the city's border.
14. Flower Vendor and Flower Bride A rich man confuses Merill for a girl who nursed him back to health.
15. Vacation by the Lake Ila takes the gang to her family's cottage by the lake after another failed ruins quest. Their spirits are raised as they look for a fabled gigantic fish found there.
16. The Conspiracy of the Darkness
17. The Fighter Louie Louie enters a fists-only fighting competition in a small town to win a valuable crystal statue. Meanwhile, Merill stumbles upon a plot to kill the merchant running the fights.
18. Transform X5 After getting pricked by a mysterious magical device, Louie transforms into a girl, an old man, a baby, a frog and... a squid man?
19. Oh my house! Merill's shack by the river gets flooded and destroyed, so she spends some of her fortune to buy a real house. However, questions are raised about why the house was so cheap. Soon enough the reason is revealed, as the house is haunted by ghosts fighting an un-ending battle. Desperate to save Merill's remaining furniture, Louie steps in and successfully defeats the ghosts, destroying the house in the process.
20. Sweet Wine of Victory! Merill, Louie and Genie enter the race to bring the first bottle of wine to the temple of Mylee. Conrad also competes and tries to cheat as always. After an intense competition between Louie and Genie, neither of them win despite believing they were in the lead, as the victor is Conrad's horse.
21. Melissa the Working Girl Merill falls ill whilst attempting to support herself with a large amount of part-time jobs. Worried that she will be replaced, she will not rest until Melissa offers to cover her jobs. However, this turns out to be more difficult than she thought, getting herself fired from all but one job. Thanks to Louie, she succeeds greatly in this final job selling food. In the end, Merill is re-hired for all her jobs as her employers beg her to come back and replace Melissa.
22. The Rebel Army Appears
23. The Rule-Breaking Women
24. Louie Punch
- In the first episode makes a brief cameo appearances Majic Lin from Orphen in the saloon of sorceress and Sailor Mercury, Sailor Mars, Sailor Jupiter of Sailor Moon in the bathroom of girls.
- (Japanese) Official website