vThe signing of a peace treaty has secured a tenuous ceasefire between mankind and the Zex, beings who emerged from space/time rifts connected to mysterious, distant worlds. Partnered with a Zex named Rigel, Azumi Kakamigahara must shoulder the fate of her own idyllic world. The unlikely pair head to newly established Fujimisaki Academy, where their destinies await. (Source: ANN)
This series is connected to a collectible card game called Z/X Ignition, which was turned into an anime of the same name in 2014. That series was universally panned by our Preview Guide staff at the time and to this day still carries a bottom-tier overall rating on our site, so the pedigree here is dubious. Fortunately this series seems to be based on a manga connected to the game rather than on the game directly, which may be why the mechanical flow going on here is much smoother and less game-like. Whether this series should be taken as an “a few months/years later” continuation of the original story or an alternate timeline version is unclear at this point; this one’s featured duo, Azumi and Rigel, were major supporting cast members in the previous show, and the way that series ended doesn’t exclude the possibility that Azumi lost her memories of an earlier contract with Rigel. Class President Ayase was also a major player in Ignition, and having Ignition as a past would explain their special treatment here and Rigel’s attitudes and protectiveness. The series’ name – Code Reunion – also seems suspicious. On the other hand, the Z/X mechanism shown so far is quite different. At this point I’m leaning toward the alternate timeline explanation, but we’ll see.
Regardless of which is the truth, the first episode stands sufficiently enough on its own to be appreciable without knowing anything about the previous series. The set-up is a pretty standard one: girls paired with supernatural/otherworldly partners are gathered together in one place and the main protagonist doesn’t know the full details of what the school is about going in. Why the school’s students are only girls is not explained, nor is why Rigel is one of the few Z/X that are constantly present; in the first series she managed Azumi’s medication, but no indication is shown so far that this is also the case this time around. Presumably that detail will come along later, because previous series or not, there’s some kind of backstory there. The first episode is otherwise the standard introduction of an elaborate school and numerous other prominent girls, right up until the time the attack happens.
Attacks on the school are not that unusual in battle school series, but having such an attack in the first episode as part of the current time, rather than the attack being an in media res move, is far less common and sets a stronger sense of urgency to the story than just the standard duels between students (which the first episode also has). That also raises the interpretation that the enemy sees what’s going to happen at the school as a sufficient enough threat. Like the first series, this one isn’t shy about slipping in some mild doses of fanservice, though the mild yuri implications are, I believe, new. Combine that with technical merits which aren’t spectacular but still a significant improvement over ZX Ignition and you have a series that at least rates middle-of-the-road as such series go. Keep a decent balance of character development, story development, and action and the series could be at least watchable.