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Ooarai Girls Academy is one of the schools in Girls und Panzer. The school operates assorted World War Two tanks from many nations, including a German Panzerkampfwagen IV, a Czechoslovakian Panzerkampfwagen 38(t) (later converted to a Jagdpanzer 38t Hetzer), a German Sturmgeschutz III Ausf.F, a Japanese Type 89B I-Go, a American M3 Lee, a French Char B1-Bis, a German Tiger (P), and a Japanese Type 3 Chi-Nu. All of the protagonists are students from Ooarai and members of its Sensha-dō team while divided into teams with their own respective tanks.

In the XP4 fics, Ooarai is allies with the Heroes Coalitions.

Overview

Ooarai Girls Academy is a school originating from Ooarai Town, Ibaraki Prefecture, Japan.

The school is far smaller than other schools shown in the anime, and has lately been losing students. Ooarai's only notable feature, it's Sensha-dō club, was suspended many years ago for unknown reasons. Until the club's revival in the events of the anime series, the school had no overall focus and lacked any outstanding features. This, in addition to the fact that the school has been accumulating deficit for several years, places it at risk of closure at the hands of the Ministry of Education.

Ooarai Girls Academy is the new school of the main protagonist Miho Nishizumi, who transferred in primarily because the school did not practice Sensha-dō. Its sensha-dō team had been long disbanded but was revived by Anzu Kadotani in a bid to avert the school's closure. The school's history of Sensha-dō has since faded into distant memory, to the point that few records remain of their exploits. Other clubs, such as the volleyball club, have also been recently disbanded as dictated necessary by budgetary constraints.

The school received high publicity in the year of the 63rd National High School Sensha-dō Tournament. Its newly revived Sensha-dō club entered the tournament under the commander of Miho Nishizumi, a former Kuromorimine student and the central figure in a controversial incident in the previous year's tournament. Despite it's initial infamy, Ooarai Girls Academy soon gained popular attention as its assorted collection of tanks defeated multiple Sensha-dō powerhouses, including the defending champions, claiming the championship despite having fought every match numerically disadvantaged with substandard equipment and inexperienced crew.

Following the 63rd National High School Sensha-dō Tournament, the school developed close friendships with its other major Sensha-dō schools, and also became an inspiration for many other schools across the nation, creating a surge in Sensha-dō activity amongst minor schools, the result of which has dramatically elevated Ooarai's status within the MEXT department.

Uniform 

The standard Ooarai uniform consists of a white serafuku with a green trim and matching skirt. A black ribbon is worn. While not (usually) enforced, there is a recommended hairstyle of short hair dyed black. In reality the dress code is poorly policed, hence many students customise their uniforms with accessories, or constantly wear their club uniforms. Similarly, while the school provides students with a named, standard issue swimsuit, nobody outside of the Morals Committee has been shown wearing it, not even the Student Council. The naval school uniform consists of a white blouse with long sleeves and a sailor-style collar, a blue neckerchief, a white pleated skirt, black socks, and white loafers. Students sometimes wear a white dixie cup hat. There's also winter uniform of Ooarai, which is long sailor-style coat with navy blue color and white trim, on top of original white and green serafuku and skirt.

Several Ooarai clubs are shown with their respective uniforms:

  • The Sensha-Dō Club wear a dark blue jacket with a white and red trim, worn over a serafuku with a darker green colour scheme. High-topped climbing boots are also worn. Many members of the club accessorise their Sensha-dō uniforms as well.
  • The Volleyball Club have a high-collared white and red gym uniform with player numbers emblazoned on the front and back.
  • The Public Morals Committee, in addition to strictly following the dress code to the letter, wear a black armband denoting their club's name.
  • The Automobile Club wear a white singlet under full-length orange overalls and steel-capped boots.
  • The Media Club wear red armbands denoting their club's name.
  • Students practicing the electives of Misogi, Ikebana and Sencha-dō wear an appropriate robe or kimono.

Tactics

Ooarai's Sensha-dō tactics are the most fluid of all the high schools, building flexibility into plans with the intention of capitalising on the specific weaknesses of different enemies. The overall weak arsenal of tanks leads to a large number of retreats on both a tactical and strategic level. The hallmark of Ooarai's commanders are their exceedingly unorthodox tactics. In general, Ooarai performs better in urban environments.

During matches in a flag tank format, Ooarai's overall strategy is to isolate the enemy flag tank from most if not all of its support, eliminate its escorts and defeat it with local numerical superiority. This situation can be attained in a variety of ways, such as baiting with decoys, feints or counterintelligence. Ooarai's tactics require precise coordination between units and frequently place their own flag tank at risk of of enemy fire.

During matches in a total annihilation format, Ooarai's doctrine is to scatter enemy forces and engage them in multiple independent skirmishes using self-sufficient detachments. It is within this myriad of smaller scale engagements where Ooarai commanders incorporate their own individual styles into the fight, refuting the prospect of a common school-wide strategy.

Ooarai's Sensha-dō club is trained by JGSDF tank commander Ami Chōno, although she is rarely seen doing any actual teaching on screen.

Electives

Based on elective study card shown by Momo Kawashima on Episode 1, there are 10 elective studies in Ooarai, as follows:

  • Sensha-dō (Panzerkraft)
  • Tea Ceremony
  • Flower Arrangements
  • Incense Ceremony
  • Caligraphy
  • Archery course
  • Naginata course
  • Aikido
  • Hermitry course
  • Ninja course

Yukari Akiyama is the only Anglerfish Team member who select Sensha-dō from the beginning. Miho Nishizumi, Hana Isuzu, and Saori Takebe selecting Incense Ceremony, while Mako Reizei selecting Caligraphy as their initial elective.

Departments

Ooarai Girls Academy is divided into different departments, among the known ones are:

  • General Studies Department
  • Naval Studies Department
  • Engineering Department
  • Intelligence Department
  • Operations Department
  • Nutritional Science Department
  • Agricultural Science Department
  • Fisheries Management Department
  • Fashion Design Department

"Johannesburg of Ooarai"

In Girls und Panzer das Finale: Part 1, it is revealed that there's an "underworld" in Ooarai High School Carrier in which either Student Council or Public Moral Committee has no power. This part called as the "Johannesburg", in reference of the real city of Johannesburg, South Africa, which, prior to FIFA World Cup 2010, was infamous for its high crime rate and slump areas. Johannesburg is located lower than areas of the ship that Anglerfish Team explored in OVA 3. The residents of Johannesburg separate themselves with the Upper Parts by attaching barbed wire to the threshold of the aisle. Despite Public Moral Committee tried to remove the barbed wire, they always put it back sometimes later.

Johannesburg depicted as a dirty, slump, and heavily vandalized area full of delinquents and shady characters from Naval Studies students. They also quite suspicious for any strangers who walks through their domain, and grew hostile toward any attempt to uphold disciplines there. Sodoko was grabbed and kidnapped by two delinquents when she reprimand them for their clothing manners. In the center of Johannesburg is Donzoko Bar, where Shark Team always hanging out with Cutlass as its barmaid and bartender. The bar is also the place where one of Ooarai's tank, The Mark IV, was found, used as meat smoking machine.

Notable Members

The heroes of Ooarai Girls Academy are the 37 members of its Sensha-dō club, who are sorted into nine teams:

Anglerfish Team

Commanded by Miho Nishizumi, the Anglerfish Team (Ankō Chīmu) comprises Miho and her friends. They operate a German Panzer IV Ausf.D, which is later converted to the F2 variant, and finally the H variant with spaced armour. The Anglerfish team was the most critical for the school's victory.

  • Commander: Miho Nishizumi
  • Gunner: Hana Isuzu
  • Loader: Yukari Akiyama
  • Driver: Mako Reizei
  • Radio Operator: Saori Takebe

Turtle Team

Commanded by Anzu Kadotani, the Turtle Team (Kame-san Chīmu) includes the former leaders of the student council. They operate a German/Czech Panzer 38 (t), which is later converted to a Jagdpanzer 38 Hetzer (only called Hetzer in the anime).

  • Commander: Anzu Kadotani
  • Gunner: Momo Kawashima
  • Driver: Yuzu Koyama

Duck Team

Commanded by Noriko Isobe, the Duck Team (Ahiru-san Chīmu) consists of members of the volleyball team. They operate a Japanese Type 89 I-Go.

  • Commander: Noriko Isobe
  • Gunner: Akebi Sasaki
  • Driver: Shinobu Kawanishi
  • Radio Operator: Taeko Kondou

Hippo Team

Commanded by Erwin, the Hippo Team (Kaba-san Chīmu) are so-called "history buffs" (reki-jo). They operate a German StuG. III Ausf.F.

  • Commander: Erwin
  • Gunner: Saemonza
  • Loader: Caesar
  • Driver: Oryou

Rabbit Team

Commanded by Azusa Sawa, the Rabbit Team (Usagi-san Chīmu) is a group of first year students. They operate an American M3 Lee. They are Ooarai's largest team. This is often confused with the M3 Grant, which is a slight variant of the same tank, employed by British forces via lend-lease.

  • Commander: Azusa Sawa
  • Gunner: Ayumi Yamagou (75mm), Aya Oono (37mm)
  • Loader: Saki Maruyama (37mm)
  • Driver: Karina Sakaguchi
  • Radio Operator: Yuuki Utsugi

Mallard Team

Commanded by Midoriko Sono, the Mallard Team (Kamo-san Chīmu) are three members of Ooarai's public morals committee. Joined the team midway through the tournament, before the Pravda match. They operate a French Char B1 bis.

  • Commander: Midoriko Sono
  • Gunner: Nozomi Konparu
  • Driver: Moyoko Gotou

Anteater Team

Commanded by Nekota, the Anteater Team (Arikui-san Chīmu) are a group of three online gamers. They operate a Japanese Type-3 Chi-Nu. They only joined in time for the finals since the team was one of the last ones to join the Ooarai Sensha-dō team.

  • Commander: Nekonya (Nekota)
  • Gunner: Piyotan
  • Driver: Momoga

Leopon Team

Commanded by Nakajima, the Leopon Team (Reopon-san Chīmu) includes members of the automotive club. They operate a German Tiger (P), this team was the last one to join the Ooarai Sensha-dō team before the tournament finals.

  • Commander: Satoko Nakajima
  • Gunner: Hoshino
  • Loader: Suzuki
  • Driver: Tsuchiya

Shark Team

Commanded by Ogin, the Shark Team (Same-san chīmu) includes members of Bar Donzoko. They operate a British Mark IV WWI tank, this team was the last one to join the Ooarai Sensha-dō team.

  • Commander: Ogin
  • 1st Driver: Rum
  • 2nd Driver & Radio Operator: Flint
  • Starboard Gunner & Loader: Murakami
  • Port Gunner & Loader: Cutlass

Others

Ooarai Girls Academy has several other students or residents who appear infrequently throughout the anime and its related works.

  • Taiga Ou
  • Mazoe
  • Sadoka

Vehicles

Tanks

  • PzKpfw IV Ausf.D (used from the beginning up to and including the Anzio match)
    • PzKpfw IV Ausf.F2 (converted from the Ausf.D, used in semi-finals against Pravda)
    • PzKpfw IV Ausf.H (converted from the Ausf.F2, used in final against Kuromorimine)
  • PzKpfw 38(t) Ausf B/C (used from the beginning up to and including the Pravda match)
    • Jagdpanzer 38(t) Hetzer(converted from PzKpfw 38(t) and used in final against Kuromorimine)
  • Sturmgeschütz III Ausf.F
  • Type 89B I-go Otsu
  • M3 Lee
  • Renault Char B1 Bis
  • VK 4501 Tiger(P)
  • Type 3 Chi-Nu
  • Mark IV Male

Trivia

  • The name Ooarai comes from the actual city of Ooarai in Japan. The town has since become aware of their highlight and tourism has been boosted because of the show.
    • The town is famous for its anglerfish (also known as monkfish) in real life, inspiring the dance and the name of their leading team.
    • In the manga, despite the sensha-do team has been disbanded a long time ago, Ooarai still retain their pride as "city of tanks". This could be because either the old sensha-do team is so famous, the citizens are deeply in love for tanks, or combination of both.
  • Its logo is the kanji "Oo" with the kanji for "arai" superimposed on top of it, stylised to resemble the Balkenkreuz (Bar Cross / Beam Cross) that served as the symbol of the Wehrmacht in WWII.
    • To avoid the German laws regarding WWII German symbols, a fifth beam was added below the cross to resemble the kanji "Oo" and the inner cross was colored blue instead of black.
  • The official English name of the school is Oarai Girls' Academy.
  • Ooarai was the first school that has been shown to employ tanks from more than one country, unlike the other competing schools that seem to focus on the tanks of a single nation.
  • It is also the only school to have no specific school theme. Only the anime's theme music was used to supplement it.
  • Ooarai's uniform is different in Manga and Anime. In Manga, the uniform carry emblem of Reichsadler in the central chest, while in Anime, the emblem is white cross instead.
  • The academy ship is based on and is named after the Zuikaku, a Japanese aircraft fleet carrier of World War II which took part in the attack on Pearl Harbor and was later sunk on October 25th, 1944 during the battle of Leyte Gulf along with 3 battleships incuding the Musashi.
  • Ooarai's academy ship (Zuikaku) was shown to be a lot smaller than the one St Gloriana has (Ark Royal). But in real life, the Zuikaku was larger than the Ark Royal by over 18m in length.
  • Ooarai is the school which has the least members participating in Sensha-dō.
  • In the 9th Chapter of the spin-off manga Girls und Panzer: Ribbon Warrior, it is said that the Duck Team landed the most hits and was the most manoeuvrable overall.
  • In the Girls und Panzer: Anthology comic Chapter XIII, Tsukie, the elderly woman who greet Miho in the morning of Ooarai-St. Gloriana exhibition match day, told that the old Ooarai Sensha-dō team use Panzer IV(Ausf D and F2) and Type-3 Chi-Nu as their main forces. In the end of the chapter, she also mentioned that Ooarai able to revive a Type 5 Chi-Ri, the prototype of Japan's most formidable tank in World War II.
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