Bell Cranel has become instantly famous, not for just beating the Minotaur singlehandedly, but for also becoming the fastest person to reach Level 2. With his ascension to Level 2, everyone is lining up to party up with the adventurer, but the question is to trust. Putting the matter off to a later time, he searches the equipment shops to find some new armor after his previous one got destroyed from the fight with the Minotaur. Bell asks around for the smith who created his last armor, a man named “Welf Crozzo” But after finding the man, he is quickly offered by him to sign a direct contract.
Bell was just a fledgling adventurer struggling to get by, but in a mere six weeks he has become well-known around the city of Orario as the fastest adventurer to reach Level 2. Bell didn’t realize it back then but there has been a lot of people who has their eyes on him. He even gets his own title awarded by the gods and goddesses. But with recognition, there lies trouble. Bell has very close relationships with the people he knows already but as more people get involved in Bell’s life, we are lead to question who to trust. People may be kind but how many of those are acting in self-interest…?
Volume 4 is actually pretty short if we are just considering the progress of the story. Right after the main story, we have two short stories: the first story, “Quest X Quest” takes place in the middle of volume 3, and the second story “A Campanella to the Goddess” takes place before the first book. I’ll be covering the main story for the review and then add my thoughts on the two short stories.
When adventures become Level 2, there is a huge event where all the gods and goddesses give the newly leveled individuals their official titles. While the adventures love their new titles, some gods regard it as a practical joke and some look at it as ridiculous. I mean, who wouldn’t want to be called “A Dragon Knight of the Dawn: ‘Burning Fighting Fighter!'” This becomes one of the main themes of the novel. While having a title awarded to you can be a symbol of pride, these same titles can also lead into feelings of resentment.
“Were the gods strange, or were the children foolish?”
“Were the gods too radical or were the children too old-fashioned in their thinking?”
There’s a lot of new plot elements being introduced in this volume and it’s really appropriate given where the story is right now. As Bell grows as an adventurer, he comes to know more about the world he lives in and at the same time, the readers do too. With the naming convention in the first half, we are given another way the gods fulfill their boredom and a future conflict gets briefly mentioned. And back in the city of Orario, more details about the types of people such as occupations and races are released.
While the naming convention is the first half of the main story, the introduction to the new blacksmith takes the second half. Welf Croozo is the newest character in the story and he brings new plot elements to the table, as well as adding more diversity to the female-dominated cast. He opens the role of blacksmiths to the reader and to the world of DanMachi. He’s got his own share of secrets and troubled history but it gets sort of resolved by the end of the main story, and by sort of, I mean that the character of Welf Croozo for this portion of the story gets a conclusive end.
“It’s like, this awesome feeling inside of me just piling up, you know? It’s a smith’s badge of honor.”
It’s not just the main story that has good characterization, the side stories purely focus on that. The first story, Quest x Quest, involves the Miach Familia and their troubles while the second story, A Campanella to the Goddess, is a short prequel about when the Hestia Familia was first established. They are very short stories, but there’s a nice satisfying feeling after reading more about the individuals involved.
The illustrations aren’t particular special aside from one picture, but it retains the same amount of quality from the previous volumes. The two color illustrations are large body profiles of the two goddesses, Hephaestus and Hestia, but the pictures are just artwork. The noteworthy picture I mentioned is a face profile of Welf but his facial expression and the flames surrounding him works very nicely with the scene its in.
Volume 4 of Is it Wrong to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon continues its consistency of world-building and characterization, introducing new elements to the story. Plot details like the business of blacksmiths, the frontier of the upper levels, and the increasing amount of people involved, help start the story in its new arc.
Author: Fujino Omori
Illustrator: Suzuhito Yasuda
English Publisher: Yen Press