As an anime adaptation of a mobile game property, that means someone – in this case, me – has to get on the case! Granted I have little to no idea about what the Seven Knights franchise is besides passing knowledge of Vanessa, but giving the anime a 3 episode taster seems perfect for me. After all, isn’t media like this supposed to get non-fans into the franchise too? Does it work? Let’s find out in the Seven Knights Revolution taste test! Summaries / spoilers follow for the first three episodes.
Our first introduction to Faria is her singing an eulogy to a devastated village, lamenting that she was too late once again. She’s also referred to as a “president” by her companion Ellen, thus is no slouch in power. Meanwhile, Nemo promises to save someone, looking like he’s getting caught up in something way bigger than he is. “Physis” appear to be name of the mindless mooks, totally not zombies or anything, as the anime shows us the creatures taking a generous bite out of people and morphing their mutilated bodies into more of themselves. They come in many shapes, all the better to hunt puny humans with.
You know, I can appreciate a place with good public transportation, even if they’re often too late to the scene or something. Nemo is fortunately rescued by Faria, who calls upon a hero via a Granseed, through a process called Succession. Magic exists alongside the Granseeds, the latter taking the form of cards.
It’s a slightly awkward exposition about the world being destroyed by the evil god Nestra, who was defeated by the heroes chosen by God, since both Faria and Nemo wouldn’t need it as students of Granseed Academy, but it could have been worse. Faria is a Successor, with Academy students tasked to defend the world against the Cult of Physis who worship Nestra.
There’s a nice bit where Nemo’s unsure about his enrollment at Granseed Academy, applying simply because he was told he had talent, but Faria points out how everybody started out that way, as nobody truly understands themselves either. Girl’s got a serious hero complex though, willing to sacrifice herself if it meant she can protect even just one person.
While Nemo is being bone-headed about not running away, his wish for power is answered, though manifesting differently, and without a contract. Does being a Successor make you an instant expert at your choice of weapon? Successors can converse with their patron champion, incidentally. Faria and Nemo gain fire-forged support points after a battle with a large beast that derailed their train after an okay choreographed action sequence.
This episode starts off mostly to do a bit more of the world building, with resident muscle-head Jou Tsurugi dragging a massive frozen Phisis dragon to the Alchemy Research Institute. The animation quality is honestly pretty hit or miss, depending on your tolerance. It’s a tough industry out there, and needing to put this out weekly is no easy feat. Also, can I just point out the uniform design? The fingers of the gloves are black to the cream of the palm, and that’s the one thing that really bothers me about the whole ensemble…
We get a glimpse of the other Successors of the heroes, and the big tiddy librarian, Sophitia who is essentially the quest marker of “Go to library and research about your Hero you shounen protagonist”. There’s very brief glimpses of the other facilities in the school, but when we reach the dorms and pan out to the larger area, it’s more like a small town in itself? How close is the town near the academy anyway? Whatever it is, Faria houses him in the student council president’s own ridiculously luxurious dorm – more like a house – she shares with Ellen. Good for you, kid. Also there’s some exposition in the form of a class history lesson. Whatever.
As it turns out, the chronic heroic sacrifice syndrome is shared by Jou, and presumably the rest of the Seven Knights members. Nemo and Jou do some teamwork where Nemo gets his obligatory costume change from his Succession and take down the Physis of the day. Support Link established, Jou reveals his dad was also a Successor, who died protecting their hometown from Physis. As such, Jou also has the spirit to Protect TM, and wants to be even stronger, and such.
Well, obviously when Nemo knows jack shit about his hero and he just got gifted the power out of nowhere, our lad will be monitored. Hurray.
Our perfect president Faria is not so perfect after all, as the only thing she can cook is
Jokes aside, the wolf? dog? boy, Gildan, obviously has his deep reasons (family), because you need one to be part of the Seven Knights (disclaimer: maybe not true?). He’s the happy go lucky, low effort kind of guy, or so he would have you think. Put that aside for now because the students have to sortie and help the army to handle the monsters. Do they not have older Successors holding the lines. Did they all die like Jou’s dad and now we have to depend on teenagers to save the world? It must be the age catching up to me. The airship shows up to shuttle them to the battlefield, presumably because the train got wrecked.
For all the times Ellen keeps lampshading herself as “a person with no opinion” and apparently no life outside of being with Faria, I sure hope this will build up to some kickass shit she pulls later on. The whole melee is to show off the other Successors and their heroes’ powers, and for Gildan to get Inferiority Complex TM. How does Nemo keep a massive creature tied up with a partial transformation when he’s a skinny ass kid, I sure would like to know.
Anyway, bureaucracy calls, Faria reports about Hourglasses being destroyed which is totally not a setup for Vanessa, the only Hero I actually know… but we need to settle the matter of Gildan, showing us the dark side of Succession: Possession. It basically has you go berserk when your magic gets overwhelmed by the Hero’s, essentially turning into a Physis creature.
We have Nemo’s Hero giving him some foreboding foreshadowing, and the romance subplot Faria and Nemo are probably gonna be put on but we don’t have time to unpack that now.
Now, I wonder if I’m being unfair judging it only through three episodes. The animation is nothing special, the story beats are fairly standard, and the world building is fine if not especially outstanding. There’s the potential of more to come, of course, much like awaiting the next main story update in your gacha game which takes months to release and not in a language you understand so you wait for livetweets / liveblogs or summaries in the next few days… where was I again?
The anime does have its moments, like the incredibly thirsty teenager I elected to highlight above, and if you do enjoy the stock shounen fare every now and again, this is probably something you can enjoy in your own time. Now and again, the exposition is a tad awkward, with Nemo being the audience surrogate to be allowed to explain in-universe basic concepts to.
As a non-fan going in, it’s okay. If I knew anything more about the heroes, I might be more excited – or disappointed, who knows – about how they’ve chosen to adapt the heroes of yore in the world of Seven Knights. Maybe something to binge watch once the season is over and/or wait for the Revolution game to launch globally, whenever that will be.