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I remember watching a cartoon about a group of teens (maybe young adults) fighting monsters in special zones that popped up at random in their home town. They fought by either thinking of a weapon/armour/abilities or writing them down in a notebook (don't quite remember) and then proceeded to save the day. I'm pretty sure the zones disappeared after each battle and that each of them was unique.

I think they were all trained by an organisation, because I remember one episode where a reporter goes into one of the special zones along with a new recruit and the regular heroes and gets separated, only to be saved by said recruit.

Through the course of the cartoon they found out about the guy who is the root of all evil, built a spaceship and started travelling through space, time or some weird dimension to find him. The crew was 3-4 of the teens and a teacher. The exterior of the ship was that of a normal (water) ship.

It aired around 1999-2000 in Bulgaria (most likely it was from the mid 1990s), which is when I watched it. It had quite a few episodes, maybe even 2-3 seasons, because I remember watching it for a good year, maybe two. I remember it being quite dark from time to time and having to increase the brightness on the TV.

I don't remember if it was a western or japanese animation. I can't say for certain, but I think it was a 3D animation, similar to that of Beast Wars: Transformers:Beast Wars

  • Incidentally, welcome to the site. Please read the tour (which will net you a badge). And take a look at the story-identification guidelines. – FuzzyBoots Aug 29 '17 at 17:35
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Is it possible you're thinking of Code Lyoko? It involves teenagers fighting monsters in special zones, and there are a few reporters who show up as characters.

Jeremie Belpois, a 13-year-old boy attending boarding school at Kadic Academy, discovers a quantum supercomputer in an abandoned factory near his school. Upon activating it, he discovers a virtual world called Lyoko with a young girl, Aelita, trapped inside it. A series of bizarre events begin to occur at Kadic Academy. Jeremie learns of XANA, a malevolent artificial intelligence/multi-agent system who also dwells within the supercomputer. XANA's goal is to conquer the real world and all human beings.

Throughout Season 1, Jeremie works to materialize Aelita into the real world and stop XANA. Jeremie is aided by his three friends Odd Della Robbia, Ulrich Stern, and Yumi Ishiyama as they are virtualized into Lyoko in order to save both worlds from the sinister virtual entity alongside Aelita. In "Code: Earth," Aelita is finally materialized, but the group discovers that XANA had planted a virus inside Aelita, which prevents them from shutting down the supercomputer. The second season focuses on the group as Aelita adjusts to life in the real world while Jeremie searches for an anti-virus for Aelita. In Lyoko, a fifth sector is discovered and the group explores more of Lyoko's secrets and mysteries, while XANA attempts to steal Aelita's memory in order to gain the Keys to Lyoko and free itself. At the end of the season, Aelita and Jeremie discover that Aelita does not have a virus, and instead is missing a fragment of hers. XANA tricks them with a fake fragment and succeeds in stealing Aelita's memory and getting itself out of the supercomputer.

In the third season, XANA destroys each of Lyoko's surface sectors one by one, until only Carthage, the fifth sector, is left. The group invites William as a member, but upon being virtualized, he is possessed by XANA. Shortly after, he destroys the Core of Lyoko, rendering the group helpless against XANA. After what they thought was their defeat, Jeremie receives a coded message from Franz Hopper, Aelita's father, that allows him to recreate Lyoko and continue the fight against XANA.

At the beginning of the fourth season, the group builds a digital submarine, the Skidbladnir, to travel across the Digital Sea to destroy XANA's Replikas, which are copies of Lyoko's sectors that are linked to XANA-controlled supercomputers on Earth. XANA uses William as its general throughout the season to defend the Replikas. Near the end of the season, XANA decides to gather energy from hundreds of his Replikas to create the Kolossus, a seemingly invincible monster that later destroys the Skidbladnir. Before it is destroyed, the group saves William from XANA's clutches. After he returned, he had a difficult time gaining the trust of the Lyoko Warriors. In Code Lyoko: Evolution he was referred to as a permanent addition to the group for the first time. While Ulrich defeats the Kolossus, Franz Hopper sacrifices himself in order to power Jeremie's "anti-XANA program," which destroys XANA upon activation.

I don't think they really do space, but Nav Skids are used to traverse the Digital Sea, which kind of fits with you thinking of it being both space and the water.

Intro

  • If this is the answer, you can accept it by clicking on the checkmark by the voting buttons. And it would probably be marked as a duplicate of scifi.stackexchange.com/questions/97408/…, not that that's a censure against you or your question. – FuzzyBoots Aug 29 '17 at 19:01
  • I'm not sure. Code Lyoko seems pretty close, however it first aired in 2003. The one thing I know for sure about the show I am looking for aired in 2000, because I clearly remember arguing with one of the kids from kindergarten about which one of us is most like the main character. – Sunchasing Aug 29 '17 at 19:49
  • The predecessor, Garage Kids aired in 2001, but that's still a bit later than you're thinking. – FuzzyBoots Aug 29 '17 at 19:53

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