A while ago we had a new action/adventure anime titled “Is it Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon?”, and despite its name was not at all about the morality of trying to find a date while dungeon crawling. Nicknamed Danmachi, this show proved to be a very well done and beloved piece about a young adventurer named Bell trying to become strong enough to win the heart of his crush and idol; Aiz Wallenstein. While the 13 episode series did not cover all of the material from the light novels it came from we English speakers are also a little behind on the light novel and manga releases. So why pick them up you ask? Well, there are several reasons these are worth picking up and I’ll be happy to explain why you should be collecting either, or both, the light novels or manga.
The story revolves around Bell Cranel and the Hestia familia which happens to literally be made up of just Hestia and Bell. Bell is saved in a dungeon at the beginning of the story by a beautiful girl named Aiz beggining him on a journey to be a hero who can impress her. Along they way he picks up a few different comrades like Lily who has the ability to carry large amounts of items through and out of the dungeon, and Welf Crozzo who is a master blacksmith.
To start, there are simply more details about the characters in the manga. Just as well the light novels go into even more detail due to the extra writing involved and fewer time restrictions. Each iteration of the series adds a few details that would otherwise be missed or omitted in another version for various reasons. For example, in the anime when an adventurer kills a monster in the dungeon it dissipates into dust leaving loot behind. However, in the manga the creatures do not disappear and loot must be harvested directly from what remains, which also gives more depth to the supporter role in the universe as these characters are considered responsible for collecting said loot.
To go with the added depth, there are also completely unique events in each version of the story. In both the manga and light novels there are scenes that never appear in the other versions. While some may feel this hurts the story it actually works in the opposite way. Each time you go through a different version there are still new events and interactions, but they may not change the actual story or fates of characters. So for those feeling they may not get the “correct” story each version differs with the journey, but the destination is still the same.
Finally, purchasing these volumes supports the series and raises our chances of a second season. Right now there isn’t quite enough material to make a full second season but in Japan the available content is pretty close to enough. If the studio sees the series pull enough revenue they may put another season through. While not many people will want to purchase all three versions, I would highly recommend the anime and at least the manga or light novels.