'Seven Deadly Sins: Knights of Britannia’ review: Fan service, guilty pleasure

The video game does a fine job giving exactly what fans loved the most about the anime: intense combat. It does, however, fall short everywhere else

Don Kevin Hapal

3:18:12am February 13, 2018

3:18:58am February 13, 2018

Courtesy of Bandai Namco Entertainment-Asia

Seven Deadly Sins: Knights of Britannia, the video game based on a popular anime, is exactly as I expected: Fan service, nothing more or less.

I loved the anime show as well, but I tried not to set the bar too high in reviewing this game. Shounen anime, after all, is a favorite for video game adaptations, but they don’t always do anything beyond feeding our hungry otaku hearts.

Like many video games based on popular anime shows, Seven Deadly Sins: Knights of Britannia’s greatest strength is the anime it's based on itself.

The video game does a fine job giving exactly what fans loved the most about the show: intense combat. It does, however, fall short everywhere else.

Poor storytelling

As usual for games of this type, it follows the anime’s story as closely as possible. You practically will just go through the whole anime again, albeit in a different fashion.

In the game, you follow the adventure of the Seven Deadly Sins, a group of overpowered and "sinful" warriors, as they help a princess save their kingdom from corrupted "Holy Knights" and demons.  

Screenshot from Bandai Namco Entertainment-Asia

Screenshot from Bandai Namco Entertainment-Asia

You embark on a journey around the fictional region of Britannia on the Boar Hat (a mobile bar on top of a giant green pig). You go from city to city, taking quests that lead to another. Aside from a few side quests that you unlock from spreading gossip around an area (or by taking quests), the adventure mode is pretty much uni-directional. 

You only get to know the story by reading the plot texts on quests, and watching short and tedious conversations between characters.

These dialogues were so lazily-made and unstimulating, it's like watching those fan-made Sims skits on Youtube.

This is the problem with its storytelling: You’re basically just going through every important scene from the anime in a way that is, well, bland.

Screenshot from Bandai Namco Entertainment-Asia

Screenshot from Bandai Namco Entertainment-Asia

Action is not the only thing loveable about Seven Deadly Sins – there’s the occasional ecchi humor, touching back stories, and dialogues. These were all lost in the video game.

Surely, there could have been other ways to make the game's storytelling more immersive. Immersion, after all, is the main reason we’d still play the video game despite already knowing the story from watching the anime.

Enjoyable combat

I’d be lying, however, if I say that I didn’t enjoy playing this video game. 

What it lacks in storytelling, it tries to make up with the action, which is the core of the anime's popularity.

Screenshot from Bandai Namco Entertainment-Asia

Its combat gameplay is either one versus one or two versus two. During adventure mode, you can also fight with a mob of weak enemies.

The controls are simple and easy to master and there are many characters to choose from as the game lets you play as almost everyone who have been featured in the show so far (But you’ll have to go through adventure mode to unlock them first).

You can even fight as Hawk, the talking pig! 

Screenshot from Bandai Namco Entertainment-Asia

Screenshot from Bandai Namco Entertainment-Asia

There really is nothing unique about its combat gameplay – it’s really basic. But as I’ve said earlier, its greatest strength is the anime it's based on. Specifically, its popularity.

Because many people already love the anime, all the video game had to do was give already existing fans a new experience. They could have aimed higher, of course, but the game would sell either way.

While it's not groundbreaking, the game at least succeeded in letting us fans enjoy Seven Deadly Sins action in a different way.

As expected, the characters' diverse combat styles and personalities really shined in a fighting game.

Each character has their own strengths and abilities and is categorized as either power, speed, or magic type. 

You can play strategically using magic casters like King with mid- to long-range attacks (mana-consuming, as expected), wreak havoc using "power" types like Diana, or destroy your enemies with a barrage of fast attacks.

Screenshot from Bandai Namco Entertainment-Asia

Screenshot from Bandai Namco Entertainment-Asia

Despite these differences in combat style, the characters have been balanced well. And since controls are easy, everything depends on how you time your blocks and attacks. You won't win by just choosing the stronger characters in the anime.

The diversity of characters and their abilities makes multiplayer mode fun and exciting, especially when you play with other people online whose character pick is unpredictable. It really challenges your mastery of each character and pushes you to adjust based on what you know about them.

The animation during combat is also not bad – I love how messy the fights can get, just as they are in the anime, where trees, rocks, and walls get knocked down or pulverized as you fight.

If you’ve never seen the show before, I recommend you watch it first. Like I said, many things were lost in the game, story-wise.

But if you’ve watched the anime already and still can’t get enough of the action like me, Seven Deadly Sins: Knights of Britannia might be good enough to be the guilty pleasure you're craving for. – Rappler.com