So, it didn’t really feel right to me that Luffy would know who a Camp Buddy character is, necessarily… From his perspective, everyone not from One Piece is just some other new person, and keeping track of things like that just didn’t feel like something he’d do. But I knew some folks would enjoy seeing him with a CB boy, so I thought this idea of him looking around, asking for someone from Camp Buddy in order to fulfill this Ask might work. I could’ve used any of the CB boys I’ve drawn before here, but I decided to use Kieran just because he struck me as the least predictable.
So, I know Taiga has his own route in Camp Buddy these days, but I know nothing about it. I only played through the game once, but in my playthrough Taiga’s initial bully persona faded away by the end and he was a happy, positive person who regretted bullying Keitaro and the others. I kind of picture Taiga in the Studio as a young man given a second chance in a new community. While there’s other Camp Buddy people in the Studio, I think he’d set his mind on becoming a better person, and I think that fiery personality mentioned in the question would be tempered, if not quelled completely. So while I think there’s a temptation to pair him up with, say, Bakugou or someone like that, I didn’t really want to go that route. However, I also didn’t have anyone good in mind for him to partner with, which is why he’s with some anons here. Maybe that’s not as interesting for y’all, since I know some folks really don’t care for when we use anon stunt cocks in Asks, but I didn’t want to just pair him up with the same folks Keitaro was with in his first Ask and anyone who came to mind felt like kind of a bad fit. There’s also the matter of quantity, where I felt I needed a handful of partners to go along with his stated goal of getting along with as many people as possible. So this is the solution I came up with.
So, of course, my first thought with this question was that it’d be a good chance to do Keitaro with Tsuyu (who is, naturally, the girl he mentions in his answer). Especially given the weird response I’ve gotten from using Camp Buddy characters in straight art in the past, it seemed like a good opportunity to lean into that. The problem was, for whatever reason, I just didn’t feel like they were a good fit. Both Keitaro and Tsuyu are amiable types who I’m sure would get along, but connecting people through a frog motif, especially considering how understated Keitaro’s us… I dunoo, it just didn’t click for me. As for other frog characters in the Studio, I couldn’t think of many. Naruto might technically count, although I think it might actually be a toad for him, but he’s more associated with the nine-tail fox anyway. So I skipped this question the first few times I saw it, but then I thought about pairing him with Kazuki from Sarazanmai. Kazuki’s a very similar “normal boy” type of character, and people seem to like whenever I use the Sarazanmai boys, so here we are. Hopefully the answer’s not too disappointing for anyone who would’ve enjoyed Keitaro x Tsuyu, but I think this answer fits in more and allows for a bit of a twist from the question’s premise.
This is an Ask I’ve had submitted a few months in a row now, but I wasn’t sure how to handle it. I felt the answer was… really obvious? And I don’t know any other way Hiro could’ve responded that would’ve been satisfying. I also didn’t really like the idea of drawing him cooking or handling food in the answer, personally, but I decided a simple show of affection would be cute.
So the concept behind this Ask is kinda an old one, and one I’ve discussed on Discord a bit, but I know some folks have been anxiously awaiting for the talking points of those talks to be brought to life. In the Near Hentai Studios I do imagine cliques/clubs of various character types forming, and the cooking characters getting together to prepare food for the Studio is a very old concept I haven’t really gotten the chance to explore. It makes sense to me Hiro would gravitate towards those characters, and Yukihira especially seems to me like someone he’s get along with. Like he says in the Ask, he’s got a lot in common with Aiden, so it’s easy for me to picture him idolizing him in a similar way (even if, due to screwy anime ages, Yukihira is actually younger than Hiro despite looking much older).