Title: The Seven Deadly Sins: Grand Cross
Release Date: March 3, 2020
Reviewed On: iOS
The anime The Seven Deadly Sins, has seen some praise globally for its fun cast of characters and action-focused battle scenes. As you could imagine, the series is no stranger to the video game market, but the medium has been rather dull with the console release of The Seven Deadly Sins: Knights of Britannia not really making a dent.
Well, leave it to mobile developer Netmarble to take a popular anime world and turn it into an action gacha with their newest release, The Seven Deadly Sins: Grand Cross. The game aims to wow players with a dedication to properly portraying this lively story into a video game. Luckily for fans, it’s quite good.
The story of The Seven Deadly Sins: Grand Cross sticks close to the events of the anime. Those who know the series will easily become familiar with the events of the story as they are pretty much identical. I decided to go back and watch the anime, and I can honestly say that it sticks rather close. However, I did notice that some of the more lewd moments of the anime’s story were toned down here, but not by much. Regardless, it’s enjoyable, and the fully voiced cut scenes with the original Japanese voice actors made the experience all the better.
The graphics are rather high in quality. Characters and environments are 3D rendered, which makes for a very cohesive experience since it doesn’t pull you from a 3D to 2D format. Everything from in-game cut scenes to ultimate moves in battles is well animated, which extends to the different hub-worlds you visit, allowing you to explore, shop, and pick up quests. It is an overall impressive experience.
The combat in Grand Cross is unique compared to other mobile games. Here, players use a card system, where you collect characters, each with their own set of abilities, which are also represented as cards. Teams for battles can have up to 3 different characters, with a 4th character slot available mid-battle in case you lose someone in a fight.
When in a match, you are given a maximum of seven cards per turn. If two cards of the same rank are next to each other, they upgrade to the next rank. For example, two 1-star cards, which are basic moves, will form a 2-star move. On the other hand, two 2-star cards will create a 3-star move, which is the highest available base ability. If cards aren’t next to each other, you can exhaust an action to move them together and acquire the upgraded card.
You are also allowed to skip moves and reset skill choices as many times as you need during a match. This provides you with near-unlimited ways of managing each round, with no two coming off as the same. Moves are executed by selecting what cards you want to place down, or what moves you choose to make with your hand. This includes the ability to decide if you want to move cards around, or skip the choice entirely.
Enemies usually come in waves of 3, with some encounters having a “boss” enemy to beat at the end. There are moments when you’ll have to fight against a character from the anime who has their own health bar. These tougher opponents are challenging as they have their own set of moves and special abilities. Battles last until either you or your opponent fall in battle.
Outside of battles, hero cards can be customized. This lets you change weapon and armor skins to suit your play style. Costumes are also available, which can provide buffs to your character’s overall stats. Some equipment in the game is acquired through the in-game shop, but most of the game is accessible through completing story chapters and random gacha pulls.
Exploration plays a huge role in the appeal of Grand Cross for me. As you complete missions, you find yourself in various towns from the series. During these moments, it’s possible to walk around and interact with characters. This is also where you’ll accept quests, but the sense of discovery is a nice touch in a mobile game where I’d expect to spend most of my time in menus.
Another aspect of the game includes taking care of the tavern and assisting guests. This is just an immersive experience for the player as they can essentially take control of the Boar Hat. Side-missions have players serving drinks, making food, and keeping the place clean to keep guests happy. I enjoyed this feature as it was just something new to do outside of battles.
The Seven Deadly Sins: Grand Cross is a unique experience in the mobile space. Its presentation and excellent UI give it a console feel, but they’ve also double-downed on a responsive and intuitive card-based battle system. While the PvP mode just didn’t really hold my attention, there’s enough in the story campaign to immerse yourself in the world of The Seven Deadly Sins throughout your daily commute.
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