I’m always excited when a beloved manga and anime series is brought into the gaming world and The Seven Deadly Sins: Knights of Britannia is by no means an exception. Experiencing the exciting and perilous story following Meliodas and Princess Elizabeth as they search Britannia for the remaining Deadly Sins is something I’ve looked forward to for ages. Seven Deadly Sins is a series that boasts an impressive roster of colourful characters, many of which I’m glad to say have been included.
At the beginning of Seven Deadly Sins: Knights of Britannia we are introduced to Princess Elizabeth. She is attempting to save her kingdom from the Holy Knights who once fought to protect her home. It is for this reason she seeks out the exiled knights known as the Seven Deadly Sins, all of whom possess phenomenal power, enough to topple the current Holy Knights regime. While I was certainly excited to relive the Seven Deadly Sins tale, I couldn’t help but feel a little underwhelmed by the interactions of the characters, already this early on, which did not bode well for the rest of the game.
The campaign mode of Seven Deadly Sins: Knights of Britannia is easy enough to play through. Explore the geography of Britannia atop the back of a giant pig, while searching for the other members of the Seven Deadly Sins. From here you’ll participate in a few different kinds of missions, each with their own purpose and unique challenge. Completing a mission will help increase your rumour gauge which is essentially information needed in helping you find the next Deadly Sin member. Completing missions will also grant players with items at the end of battle, which are needed to craft attachable stat boosters and attack bonuses.
The three main kinds of missions are story missions, side missions, and forage missions. The main story missions will progress the campaign mode along and becomes the main way in which both new characters and fighting areas will become available. Side missions are found all throughout the map of Britannia and can be played multiple times over so that you can get the best score available. Side missions can be a mix of challenges such as Time Attack, Versus Battles and Hoard Clearance. Foraging missions are unique in a sense; you don’t fight, instead controlling Princess Elizabeth to gather resources while using Hawk to protect her from those around.
Combat in Seven Deadly Sins: Knights of Britannia is a bit of mixed bag in terms of playability. Fighters are classed into three different types, strength, speed, and magic, each with their own pros and cons. Players rooted in strength can deal out higher damage but will be slower moving. Speed fighters can flirt around the stage effortlessly, but their attacks pack less punch. And magic users attack from longer distances but have little prowess when fighting at close quarters.
The fact that Seven Deadly Sins has over 20 playable characters to choose from in game makes for some interesting fights, however simply having numbers does not a good game make. The problem isn’t the number of players available but the fact that they all handle very differently to one other. Some fighters like King and Dianne are an absolute nightmare due to their size and poor movement range when floating in midair. Targeting opponents during battle becomes increasingly frustrating as play goes on with the most simple of attacks missing the enemy. Or even worse is when the enemy avoids your special attack, effectively wasting it.
The saving grace of Seven Deadly Sins: Knights of Britannia is the Versus Mode which is best played after completing the campaign. In the beginning you’ll have only few playable characters so finishing the story is necessary. From there you may select two fighters to battle either a second player or the game CPU. Once you have your pair selected it’s all a matter of utilising their attacks and teamwork to best your opponent. I spent hours on end just destroying my opponents with Merlin and Arthur Pendragon.
Despite having a lot going for it in the way of playable characters and beautiful cell-shaded scenery, Knights of Britannia is relatively dull. Being such a vibrant series with bigger than life characters, action packed fights, and heartfelt interactions, it’s a terrible let down to see almost all of this anime charm fall flat in game. I found myself getting bored too quickly and wondering “is this really all there is to the story?” The campaign also became too stagnant after only a few hours. It was as if I had to finish the game simply so I could enjoy Versus Mode properly.
Save Britannia, if you can stay awake to do it...
Seven Deadly Sins: Knights of Britannia had me very excited to fight alongside some of my favourite heroes, but after having played the game I’m left feeling as though this game (and the fans) deserved more. I’m all for games based off of great anime, but if you’re going to create one that possesses such a loyal fan base you need to make sure it’s enjoyable. Sadly I just can’t play this game and not think to myself that it’s missing a key ingredient. For now it’ll serve as a great distraction until the next game comes along, so until such time I’ll spend my nights exploring Britannia and protecting the Liones Kingdom as best I can.