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High School DxD Vol. #04 Manga Review

3 min read

High School DxD Volume 4 CoverIssei says he is willing to do anything to save Rias from her scumbag betrothed, but is he willing to sacrifice himself to the Red Dragon?

Creative Staff
Comic: Hiroji Mishima
Original Story: Ichiei Ishibumi
Character Design: Zero Miyama
Translation/Adaptation: Caleb D. Cook

What They Say
Issei’s on a rampage?!

“President’s virginity is mine!!”

President Rias, the beautiful young devil, is betting her engagement on the outcome of a “rating game,” and Issei’s joining the fight. But does he even stand a chance against Riser’s harem of devil girls…?!

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
Contains nudity.

A Rating Game between devils is an interesting way to settle disputes without killing each other. Since a royal devil has servants that fit the position of characters of a chess game (queen, 2 knights, 2 rooks, etc.), it can create close to a level playing field, ultimately relying on a king’s use of both strategy and strength to win. However, the battle between Rias and Riser is a little different since Rias is short a knight, rook, and all but one pawn. Since Rias used all her pawn positions to resurrect Issei, she is greatly undermanned in game pieces.

Then again, because Rias used all her pawn pieces on Issei, he should be that much stronger than all other pawns. Unfortunately, she had to seal away most of that power or it would have destroyed his weak human body. But thanks to her slave driver fighting training of Issei, he is now strong enough for Rias to remove one of the seals and up his power. Now, their battlefield with Riser is created as a replica of their high school and before any devil is killed, they should be transported out of the arena and treated for their wounds.

From here, it quickly becomes apparent that Riser has no respect for Rias and her soldiers. Riser will simply rely on his strength, whereas Rias initiates a strategy to help maximize the strength of her few chess pieces. Then, add Issei’s secret magic attack that explodes the clothes of his female opponents, and they might have a chance to at least not embarrass themselves in this Rating Game. Well, I guess it is too late for Issei to not embarrass himself as his female opponents and teammates are pretty disgusted with his clothes explosion spell attack.

Rias’ soldiers make a great effort and even manage to take much of Riser’s soldiers down. But in the end, Issei proves to be too weak to even scratch Riser before he is completely beat down and sent to the hospital. Seems it has become inevitable that Rias will be forced to marry Riser. Although, Rias’ brother, Devil King Lucifer, did offer Issei a chance to break up the engagement party and rescue Rias. But to have any chance at saving Rias, Issei will have to make a great sacrifice to the Red Dragon in exchange for more power. Will Issei make that sacrifice? Even if he does, will he be strong enough to defeat Riser and rescue Rias?

In Summary
This manga adaptation managed to rip through season one of the anime in a mere four volumes. Thus, there was hardly a dull moment in this fast paced manga series. And this fourth volume was no exception, especially when much of it is an action-packed Rating Game battle between Rias and Riser. However, where the character interaction shines is the end of the Rating Game and the sacrifices that Issei is willing to make to defend Rias’ chastity.

Content Grade: B
Art Grade: A-
Packaging Grade: A
Text/Translation Grade: A-

Age Rating: 17+
Released By: Yen Press
Release Date: February 24th, 2015
MSRP: $13.00

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