Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS - Episode 001
|English||Link into the VRAINS|
|Japanese OP||"With The Wind"|
|Japanese ED||"Believe In Magic"|
|English OP & ED||"Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS Main Theme"|
|Japanese||May 10, 2017|
|English||September 1, 2018|
|Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episodes (season 1)|
|Next||"Seize the Wind!"|
"Link into the VRAINS", known as "My Name Is Playmaker" in the Japanese version, is the first episode of the Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS anime. It first aired in Japan on May 10, 2017, became available with official subtitles via Crunchyroll on June 1, 2017, aired in Canada on September 1, 2018, and became available on Pluto TV on November 22, 2020.
Den City is the city where the newest network technology was developed. There we have the LINK VRAINS, a cyberspace managed by the SOL Technologies Inc. where people Duel night and day. Our protagonist, Yusaku Fujiki, is a cool student with excellent observation abilities. In order to defeat a group who plans to ruin the LINK VRAINS, the Knights of Hanoi, he transforms into his avatar Playmaker and Duels them. One day, Yusaku gets the information that SOL Technology is desperately searching for: a mysterious lifeform with the help of Kolter, a hacker who shares Yusaku's goals. Noticing the Knights of Hanoi are also after it, Yusaku prepares a trap and plans his capture strategies...
Within a green sphere, a masked man with spiky red hair and white robes calls upon "Cracking Dragon" to destroy the Cyberse. A spurt of fire coalesces into an angular, mechanical dragon, which twists around a column of rock in the center of the world. A yellow AI that was captured in a red energy field comments that the Knights of Hanoi are attacking the Cyberse, and an orange one adds that they are trapped, so they cannot fight the Knights. Out of nowhere, a purple AI appears heroically, stating how he was not trapped due to him being an outcast, then moving to save the other five AI, who are all trapped in a red seal of energy (in the dub, he simply claims that he cannot be caught and chastises the other AI for being captured). The masked man sends the "Cracking Dragon" to catch the purple AI, prompting a blue AI to warn him to watch out, but he breaks out of the Cyberse, then causes it to vanish. The masked man realizes that the AI is cutting the signal to stop the Knights' attack. A green AI notes in shock to a red AI that by doing so, the purple AI will not be able to return to Cyberse. The purple AI causes the Cyberse to vanish, apparently crystallizing into a green data prism that vanishes into his eyes. But his heroism leaves him defenseless, and he is devoured by "Cracking Dragon", leaving only his eye (as the impact hits in the dub, a flash of binary implies a more technological causes of dismemberment). The masked man returns to his base, and he demands that the Ignis is tracked down as it's the only one who knows where the Cyberse is, while the eye vanishes into the network.
Five years later, in cameras observe various aspects of a cityscape, including a suspension bridge, a harbor, and the tops of construction buildings. In a sunset location, a mysterious Duelist is Dueling with a man in similar white robes to those of the masked man, but who wears a steel mask over the top half of his face. The Duelist commands his "Linkslayer" to attack the man's "Hack Worm" with "Giga Claw", destroying it. The man angrily demands to know who the Duelist is and why he opposes the Knights of Hanoi. Meanwhile, the eye, hiding in the eye of a nearby gargoyle statue, spectates the Duel. The Duelist responds that he will be there whenever the Knights cause chaos, then states his name: Playmaker.
In Den City High School, Yusaku Fujiki sees himself as a child, but then he wakes up after hearing a voice telling him to wake up. Their lecture apparently over, Naoki Shima walks past Yusaku, then starts to talk to him. Yusaku asks Shima his name, to which Shima chastises him for not knowing his classmate's name after a month of school, noting that Yusaku must not have many friends (in the dub, the two are more familiar with one another; Yusaku sarcastically claims to have been exhausted). Shima introduces himself and tries to show off his new Duel Disk, but Yusaku takes no notice of it until Shima shows it in front of his face (in the dub, he also snarks that it's a watch). Shima notes how Yusaku uses an "old-style" Duel Disk that requires physical cards, boasting that his Duel Disk has an AI installed and that the AI is connected to the SOL Technologies' cloud, so he does not need physical cards. He also boasts about having VIP priority access to LINK VRAINS, as he presses a button to bring up a screen of LINK VRAINS, where multiple Duels are being held. Yusaku casually asks whether Shima has gone to LINK VRAINS, but Shima shouts "Don't be stupid!" The AI on Shima's Duel Disk scolds Shima, saying that "stupid" is a forbidden word (in the dub, Shima asks if Yusaku is nuts, and his AI tells him that nuts are crucial to a balanced diet). Shima comments that LINK VRAINS is a special gathering place, and that Celebrity Duelists go there too, so he says that he cannot go there as easily as Yusaku thinks. Shima thinks about how if he goes to LINK VRAINS, he may be able to meet some Celebrity Duelists or Playmaker. Yusaku queries about Playmaker, and Shima describes Playmaker as a Duelist who secretly fights the Knights of Hanoi, a group of hackers who are trying to destroy LINK VRAINS. Yusaku asks if Shima has a picture of Playmaker (in the dub, he comments that it sounds like a lot of work for one man), but Shima denies it, saying that no one knows his identity. Yusaku prepares to leave, wishing Shima good luck, but Shima asks Yusaku if the latter would like the former to teach him how to Duel. Yusaku calmly rejects his proposal, because he thinks Shima is not a strong Duelist and gives three reasons why: Shima brags about his Duel Disk instead of his Deck (in the dub, because he requires the support of an AI to Duel); Shima hasn't gone to LINK VRAINS because he doesn't trust his own skills; and that Shima doesn't look past the surface, judging Yusaku by his Duel Disk rather than his cards or skills. This shocks Shima, but Yusaku tries to reassure Shima with three good things that are encouraging for him becoming a better Duelist: that he loves Duel Monsters; he is clearly well-informed about recent Dueling trends; he talked to a loner like Yusaku, meaning he is a loner himself (in the dub, Yusaku is clearer, stating that Shima is confident, having talked to him in such a manner, but that he has much to improve). Shima, surprised by Yusaku's words, angrily asks Yusaku "what's with this "three" stuff" and runs off, telling Yusaku to go Duel by himself (in the dub, he claims that he's got three things that he'd like to say to him, but if he did his grandmother would wash his mouth out with soup). Yusaku then notes that he never thought about it, questioning about a three Main Monster Zone limit before shrugging it off (in the dub, he muses that there are three reasons why Shima shouldn't be so upset, but notes that there's no point telling him now).
In LINK VRAINS, the eye appears, only to be detected and immediately pursued by security drones, and it promptly flees along a railing. At SOL Technologies, Zaizen, the security manager, walks into a room and onto a walkway over an abyss. A virtual chessboard appears with five chess pieces; Rook, Knight, Bishop, Queen, and King. Zaizen contacts Bishop, confirming the Ignis has appeared, and that it is somewhere in the network. Bishop comments that SOL Technologies is the leader of the network because of the Data Material that the Cyberse created for them. However, due to the Knights' attack five years ago, the Ignis hid the Cyberse, causing the amount of data to decrease and the network efficiency to decrease by 30%, prompting a search for the Ignis. Bishop urges Zaizen to find the Ignis, or the network will fall into chaos, and SOL Technologies will fall with it, instructing him to use whatever means necessary.
In the base of Hanoi, the white-robed figure who attacked the Cyberse and a blonde man in a white suit both materialize. The blonde man addresses the white robed man as "Varis", explaining that they have a lead on the Ignis. He states that the Cyberse will resurrect if SOL Technologies get to the Ignis first, and Varis replies, calling the blonde man "Specter", and telling him that they must find the Ignis first, or their efforts will be wasted. Specter informs Varis of one more concern he has: Playmaker, who will intervene in the Knights' activities. Varis briefly questions if Playmaker is SOL Technologies' assassin, but shrugs off the thought as SOL Technologies would be more public in the way they deal with the Knights (in the dub, Varis does not dwell as much on Playmaker). Specter adds that Playmaker blocks them when they try to track him and that he erases all his LINK VRAINS logins, concluding that he is an expert hacker. Although Playmaker concerns him, Varis instructs Specter to focus on the Ignis.
Yusaku sits outside their hotdog van, Café Nom, with Kolter, and looks at a banner of two Duelists, asking Kolter who they are. Kolter explains that they are the Celebrity Duelists The Gore and Blue Angel. Kolter asks Yusaku if he has heard of a Data Storm. Yusaku replies that he hasn't, and Kolter explains that it is a wind that blew through LINK VRAINS and that people used ride this wind in Duels called Speed Duels there. He notes that there were rumors of brand new monsters that lived in the Data Storm. Kolter comments that if Yusaku finds it, he might enjoy Dueling again. He adds that he feels sorry for getting Yusaku involved, but Yusaku assures him that he does this of his own free will, swearing to get revenge on those who took the past away from Kolter's younger brother and Yusaku. (In the dub, this conversation is significantly changed. Kolter does not tell Yusaku who the Gore and Blue Angel are; simply stating that Yusaku isn't up-to-date on the Celebrity Duelists, and joking about people crazy enough to Speed Duel after informing Yusaku about them, commenting that crazier people than that are those who think a hotdog is a sandwich. He then asks what's on Yusaku's mind, as he's rather quiet. Yusaku explains that he's thinking about the leader of the Hanoi; who is difficult to find despite his large legion.)
Yusaku asks Kolter if there have been any changes, and Kolter replies that Den City's network security was strengthened, adding that SOL Technologies is looking for an AI program. Yusaku comments how he had never heard of an AI that can flee, as they do not have free will. Kolter comments that SOL Technologies will use a large-scale scan to look for the program, and Yusaku adds that Hanoi will also come for it if they do. Yusaku then thinks back to the Knight asking him why he opposes Hanoi, then comes up with an idea, and enters the hotdog truck with Kolter. They fire up their computers (in the dub, Kolter initially mistakes Yusaku asking him to fire them up as talking about the grill), closing the truck's awning. Yusaku asks Kolter to build a trap to capture the AI, planning to use it as his secret weapon against Hanoi. Yusaku plans to create an escape route for it during the large-scale scan by creating a hole in the firewall that leads into Yusaku's Duel Disk, rather than chase it. Kolter says it is impossible to do so in the short time they have (in the dub, he calls it a lot of coding for one person), but Yusaku says that it is possible if the two work together, and Kolter agrees.
Zaizen contacts Bishop again, and Bishop asks if the scan is ready. Zaizen replies that it is ready, and Bishop asks why the scan has not been initiated yet. Zaizen explains that the city's security level will decrease during the scan and that if Hanoi attacks, the damage will be enormous. Bishop asks if there is any other way to find Ignis, and Zaizen hesitantly replies that there is no other way.
At night, the MC announces the commencement of multiple Duels involving Celebrity Duelists, including the Gore in Zone 1 and Blue Angel in Zone 2. Shima cheers them both on in the crowd. Meanwhile, SOL Technologies begins their security scan of LINK VRAINS, with Zaizen overseeing them and the eye tries its best to escape from the scans, which manifest as blue searchlights. Kolter tells Yusaku to hurry, while Specter informs Varis that the security level of Den City has started to decrease to 23%. A Knight of Hanoi reports to Varis, who Varis calls "Number 10" (in the dub only) and he instructs him to do whatever it takes to capture the Ignis. Number 10 breaches the firewall of LINK VRAINS as SOL Technologies futilely attempt to stop him, and the Knight breaks through with "Cracking Dragon". The screens begin to go fuzzy, and Shima wonders what's going on. Kolter notices this and informs Yusaku. Yusaku feels a strange sensation at this point and ponders about it (in the dub, Yusaku is simply coding).
Gore wonders what's going on as "Cracking Dragon" breaks through above him, and it flies over the shocked Blue Angel. Number 10 begins his attack on LINK VRAINS, causing widespread destruction in both LINK VRAINS and in the real world, where his attack shatters many of the videoscreens. "Cracking Dragon" uses its fire breath attack on the civilians in LINK VRAINS, causing their accounts to get erased, with both Kolter and SOL Technologies taking note of the destruction. Number 10 corners the eye and moves to capture it. Then, Yusaku completes his program, and activates it, creating an escape route for the eye in the form of a blue railing, which the eye swiftly takes. Yusaku and Kolter leave the van, where a single videoscreen remains working, and Yusaku raises his Duel Disk in the air as electricity crackles around him. The transfer completes, and the eye is caught in Yusaku's Duel Disk, appearing on its surface. The eye, in surprise, looks at Yusaku and looks for a way out, but Yusaku states that the eye has no way of changing the program from within the Duel Disk. The eye angrily criticizes Yusaku and Kolter, until Kolter points out that they rescued him, prompting the AI to change his tune.
In LINK VRAINS, Blue Angel is being chased by "Cracking Dragon" and seeing this on-screen in the plaza, Yusaku rushes into the van and into a cylindrical chamber, preparing to enter LINK VRAINS. He takes out his Deck, declaring "Deck Set! Into the VRAINS!", and inserts his Deck into his Duel Disk, causing the words "into the VRAINS" to spell out across the side (in the dub, he declares "It's time to link into the VRAINS!") Blue data and light surrounds him, replacing his school uniform with a green and grey bodysuit, materializing a grey belt, and changing his blue hair to orange and pink, and his bangs to gold, spiking them up. Now in the guise of Playmaker, he enters LINK VRAINS, emerging from a portal above the city
"Cracking Dragon" readies a fire breath attack to erase Blue Angel's account, but Playmaker saves her, much to Blue Angel's surprise as she asks who Playmaker is (in the dub, she thanks him for saving her). The Knight asks the same question, and Playmaker introduces himself. Playmaker adds that he has the program that the Knights are looking for, threatening to delete it if he doesn't call off his attack (much to the Ignis's shock), and that if the Knights want them, then they have to defeat Playmaker in a Duel. The Knight accepts his proposal for a Duel as Shima cheers him on, and they relocate to a more modern cityscape Zone within LINK VRAINS. However, the eye notes that Playmaker cannot win with his current Deck, and releases the Cyberse's Data Material, causing a blinding beam of purple light to emerge from his position in Playmaker's Duel Disk, much to Zaizen's shock. This causes a massive purple tornado to appear in LINK VRAINS, much to the surprise of the Knight, Kolter and everyone watching. The eye then summons a strange board, telling Playmaker to hop aboard. Playmaker jumps on it, and begins to ride the waves of data - which Kolter identifies as a Data Storm. The Ignis tells Playmaker, "If you want to win, then seize the wind, Playmaker!"
Featured Duel: Playmaker vs. Knight of Hanoi
The rest of the Duel is not shown, but Playmaker wins.
The following cards appeared in this episode. Cards in italics debuted here.
|Japanese character name||Japanese voice actor|
|Yusaku Fujiki/Playmaker||Shouya Ishige|
|Mysterious Lifeform||Takahiro Sakurai|
|Shoichi Kusanagi||Subaru Kimura|
|Naoki Shima||Chiharu Sawashiro|
|Go Onizuka||Daiki Hamano|
|Aoi Zaizen/Blue Angel||Yuki Nakashima|
|Akira Zaizen||Shouma Yamamoto|
|Voice of AI||Maasaki Yano|
In other languages
|German||Mein Name lautet Playmaker|
|Portuguese||Hora de Entrar no VRAINS|
|Spanish||Mi nombre es Playmaker|
- This marks the first time that a new Type is introduced in the first episode.