Otaku USA Magazine
INTERVIEW: Ragna Crimson Creator Daiki Kobayashi Talks Dragons and Anime Adaptation

Ragna Crimson is a dark fantasy manga by Daiki Kobayashi where Ragna is a dragon hunter, battling against the dragons that could wipe out humanity. Square Enix Manga & Books is publishing the series and dropped volume 12 this week, and its anime adaptation can be streamed on HIDIVE. Otaku USA spoke with Kobayashi about world-building, favorite characters, and how the creator was involved in the anime adaptation.

How did you approach the world-building you did for Ragna Crimson? How did you first get interested in dragons?

I can’t remember what got me interested in dragons, but I thought I’d try my hand at a fantasy series since my previous two works were set in the modern age. My editor at the time suggested that if I wanted to draw a fantasy series at Square Enix, I should incorporate Dragon Quest motifs, so familiar DQ names such as “Dragon Monarch,” “Slime,” and “Chimera” appear in Ragna Crimson.

Do you have a favorite character to write or draw?

Crimson. I originally created this manga because I wanted to have a true villain like him play the role of an ally. If not Crimson, then I’d say the Silverware Princess (Starlia). She has many sides to her as she’s cute, cool, and funny.

How do you think Ragna is developing as a character over the series?

His personality changes as he grows stronger. I feel like he’s gaining confidence in his interpersonal relationships in the current arc that takes place after the anime. Also, he’s not just the one taking jokes anymore, he’s making them as well.

What is it like having an anime adaptation of your work? Are you involved with the anime’s creation?

I was involved all the way through the screenwriting stage. We mainly had to abridge the scenes and dialogue to make them fit into 24 episodes. The most exciting thing about the anime was the addition of the voice acting. I’m very pleased with voice actors’ performances.

Is there anything else you’d like your North American fans to know about you?

In the world of this manga, the American continent has become an uninhabitable environment. The reason why this happened will be revealed in the future, so please look forward to it.


Danica Davidson is the author of the bestselling Manga Art for Beginners with artist Melanie Westin, plus its sequel, Manga Art for Everyone, and the first-of-its-kind manga chalk book Chalk Art Manga, both illustrated by professional Japanese mangaka Rena Saiya. Check out her other comics and books at www.danicadavidson.com.