- Game: The Seven Deadly Sins: Knights of Britannia
- Platform: PS4 (reviewed)
- Publisher: Bandai Namco Entertainment
- Developer: NatsumeAtari
Review copy supplied by the publisher.
The Seven Deadly Sins manga/anime has managed to gain some traction with American audiences lately. Its lighthearted nature, outlandish cast of characters, and multi-episode battles continue to garner fans as word of mouth travels. It was only a matter of time before Bandai Namco got its hands on the rights to the property and give it a video game adaptation. Developer NatsumeAtari chose to go the 3D arena battler route and also throw in some light RPG elements to produce The Seven Deadly Sins: Knights of Britannia. The final product delivers some decent thrills for fans of fighting games and the adventures of Meliodas and his crew. But it ultimately fails to offer a worthwhile undertaking that could have given it a longer shelf life.
Progressing through Knights of Britannia is accomplished by simply making your way through the Adventure Mode. The story being told within that journey retells the plot of the ongoing series and doesn’t deviate too far from it. Curious first timers will quickly become accustomed to the hilarious banter between each character and the funny moments woven in between each battle. The charm of The Seven Deadly Sins is faithfully represented here, so longtime fans have nothing to worry about in that regard. The heart and soul of the manga/anime is replicated perfectly. The whimsical tunes and hyperactive battle themes happen to be pretty catchy, which lends the whole adventure even more personality. It’s clear that a lot of care was put into making sure this game as loyal to the source material as possible.
Your trek through Britannia follows a set format that never changes – move around the world map, set up shop at a location, complete main/side missions and then move on to the next part of the journey. The first hour or so manages to be a bit pleasant due to the archaic battles you can participate in. The battle system isn’t overly complex, but it still has a few commendable qualities. When battles erupt between two characters or even four, nearby homes and other obstacles can be destroyed. It evokes the feel of the Naruto Ultimate Ninja games, but on a much smaller scale. The cumbersome camera can complicate things as it becomes trapped behind characters/obstacles and end up being the reason you take a loss. Besides the story driven fights, you’ll be asked to compete in events that deal with resource gathering and missions that are all about defeating a set number of foes under a time limit. Adventure Mode only entails those three gameplay types all the way through, which ends up making the whole experience feel mundane.
Getting the rest of the roster can only be done by getting through Adventure Mode, so you’ll just have to trudge through it unfortunately. The Duel Mode thankfully focuses on the character battles only, which stands out as the best part of the game. 20 of the anime/manga’s super powered knights and wanted heroes are thankfully featured in all their glory. While they look decent enough in battle, some of their animations don’t look as good during cutscenes. Mouths stay open agape while dialogue is being shared and other strange visual hiccups make the game look low-budget at times. While I realize that every game based on an anime doesn’t have the high production values some Dragon Ball and Naruto games have, it’s still disappointing to see how rough Knights of Britannia looks and performs in some areas.
The Seven Deadly Sins: Knights of Britannia is ultimately average at best. The battle system lacks any complexity, which means the main hook of the game will only keep you for a short time. Adventure Mode features the source material’s hilarity and does a great job of retelling its grand tale. But the repetitive nature brought on by the missions thrown your way sets in pretty quickly. Knights of Britannia is your basic licensed video game that’s based on a manga/anime. It could have been so much more if the featured gameplay had more to it than just routine beat ’em up skirmishes and drab item collecting.
- There’s a nice selection of playable characters
- The humor of the manga/anime is well represented, plus the music is surprisingly splendid
- The chaotic nature of the battles can yield some satisfying results in the fun department
- The Adventure Mode’s mission structure gets real repetitive, real fast
- Some of the character animations are a bit off
- The camera can be a bit uncooperative during battle