Author Topic: Sword Art Online - anime about MMORPG in virtual reality

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Sneaky_Seal

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Sword Art Online - anime about MMORPG in virtual reality
« on: October 16, 2016, 05:59:08 PM »
I haven't found a dedicated topic - so I've started a new one.

Sword Art Online (or SAO) is an anime about a MMORPG set in virtual reality. The basic concept is that players are locked in the game and have to beat it to get out with dying in the game means dying in real life, obviously.

It's somewhat week on the plot and the main character is OPed throughout the series/game but it's still and enjoyable experience.

If you like anime and Korean MMORPGs - you should definatelly check it out.

Share your thoughts on it here, please, if you've watched it already.
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Klutz64

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Re: Sword Art Online - anime about MMORPG in virtual reality
« Reply #1 on: October 17, 2016, 12:48:19 AM »
Took me a while to get around to checking it out, and I could only get through the first series/season. I've already shared my thoughts in the Anime thread, but I suppose I can reiterate my main critique here:

The show changes plot on a whim. The end of the first arc comes out of nowhere with a weak excuse of the main villain getting "bored" or whatever, but it just makes it look like the writer(s) couldn't decide how to keep it interesting without just scrapping what they had and going a different route. And as you pointed out, Kirito is just a personified power fantasy, and not even a particularly interesting one at that.

How on Earth the show got so popular I'll never understand.

Towns Car Marty

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Re: Sword Art Online - anime about MMORPG in virtual reality
« Reply #2 on: October 17, 2016, 03:08:27 AM »
I've seen a lot of it and I really dislike it :\ It's a po-faced and overly self-serious take on what .hack//sign did, and despite taking itself so seriously, SAO breaks its own rules whenever the writers need a convenient out.

Also, AI baby.

Tomara

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Re: Sword Art Online - anime about MMORPG in virtual reality
« Reply #3 on: October 17, 2016, 03:49:04 AM »
SAO started off well enough and there were plenty of early episodes I liked (the murder mystery was pretty original), but then the plot started moving more and more towards making Kirito the ultimate wish fulfilment character and things got awkwardly terrible and terribly awkward. Him and Asuna hooking up? Fine, but stop throwing female characters at him to spend the night with! Also, no convenient AI children!

And there's just so many missed opportunities. Like, there's this boss fight, in the first season, I think, and one of the proposed plans involves risking NPC lives. Some characters briefly wonder if this is okay. Then it's quickly dropped and not mentioned ever again.

Personally, I prefer Log Horizon. It's smarter when it comes to world building and it feels more like a game.

Aeolus

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Re: Sword Art Online - anime about MMORPG in virtual reality
« Reply #4 on: October 17, 2016, 12:21:49 PM »
I still lol at Kirito crashing a funeral and interrupting a suddenly cancer free cancer patient talking about her sudden freeness from the cancers to relevant characters just to talk about his latest development on his super science project to make his AI Babby a reality. What part of "Designated Side-Character Arc. No Main Characters Allowed!" did you not understand Kirito (not that it was even his first offense in that regard, nor his second, nor even his third or fourth)?

But then that entire arc was godawful since apparently Rich Girl Romantic Interests with Mommy Issues doesn't exactly mesh well with a Guild of Calamitous Ailments and their leader Miss Dying of Super AIDS and Is Too Good For This World (and Designated Romantic Love Interests can't have Romantic Love Interests).

Asuna: "My problem is exactly like your problem and we can both learn from each other." Dying Girl: "Sorry, I can't hear you over the sound of me dying to the most deadly disease acquired in the most tragic way known to the hack writer." A: "Hey! Hasn't humanity been researching that disease long enough now that your tragic backstory shouldn't have even been possible barring comical levels of gross incompetence across the board? Nevermind the fact that treatments for the disease in question have existed for decades now?" DG: "Sorry, I can't hear you inside this experimental supercomputer that keeps me alive but in constant (and tragic) pain that's funded by unlimited research funds and lets me play videogames on my deathbed." A: "Boy, sucks to be you then." DG: "Don't worry, I've been assured the most lavish funeral service in your videogame. Now lets make ou-*grrk* *dies* -old on, I've still got to confer this Ultimate Unbeatable Technique that'll assuredly remain undefeated and not act as the indicator of an immediately impending Worfing and Damseling because it even defeated your Male Power Fantasy Husbando who, I have on good confidence, totally didn't snowball our duel or took a dive. Although how did he manage to handle that guild that tried to bully our guild single-hande *dies for real good*" A: "You were too good for this world and its unfortunate I didn't catch that part right before you died." Some other chick: "The Guild of Calamitous Ailments is no more! All of our dying has suddenly been cured! Its a miracl-" Kirito: "Hey Everybody! I just super scienced my AI daughter into the real world. Now let me set up the crux of the first half of season three."
In my vision, I see that one of us is going to KO the other.

Arvis

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Re: Sword Art Online - anime about MMORPG in virtual reality
« Reply #5 on: October 17, 2016, 04:01:49 PM »
I maintain that the first half of Season 1 of SAO is good.

And then everything else is horrible.  Even if I do like Suguha.
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Mickeymac92

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Re: Sword Art Online - anime about MMORPG in virtual reality
« Reply #6 on: October 17, 2016, 04:29:34 PM »
I've seen a lot of it and I really dislike it :\ It's a po-faced and overly self-serious take on what .hack//sign did, and despite taking itself so seriously, SAO breaks its own rules whenever the writers need a convenient out.

Also, AI baby.

To be fair, the webnovel version was supposedly supposedly published before .Hack//Sign, though checking the dates, it might not have been by much. Plus, I don't know how much changed when it became a light novel in 2009.

But otherwise, I agree with you.

(And your avatar scares me for some reason)

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Aeolus

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Re: Sword Art Online - anime about MMORPG in virtual reality
« Reply #7 on: October 17, 2016, 06:52:14 PM »
I maintain that the first half of Season 1 of SAO is good.

And then everything else is horrible.  Even if I do like Suguha.

Meh. Even early on, Kirito was pulling crap like his exclusive Dual Wielding skill and getting his totes wicked Black Swordsman reputation going. Though I will concede that at least that portion of the show benefited from having actual stakes (even if all the regulars were too well plot armored for it to really matter).
In my vision, I see that one of us is going to KO the other.

eightbitsamurai

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Re: Sword Art Online - anime about MMORPG in virtual reality
« Reply #8 on: October 18, 2016, 01:04:40 AM »
I maintain that the first half of Season 1 of SAO is good.

And then everything else is horrible.  Even if I do like Suguha.

Meh. Even early on, Kirito was pulling crap like his exclusive Dual Wielding skill and getting his totes wicked Black Swordsman reputation going. Though I will concede that at least that portion of the show benefited from having actual stakes (even if all the regulars were too well plot armored for it to really matter).

It also at least does enough to say "well he did all that so quickly 'cause he was a beta tester" even though it still barely made sense.

Either way, one of the worst popular anime I've ever seen, and pretty much everything I dislike about anime put into one - the OP Gary Stu, the Harems, the tenticle fanservice, the incest - it's got literally everything.

Rook

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Re: Sword Art Online - anime about MMORPG in virtual reality
« Reply #9 on: October 18, 2016, 02:19:31 AM »
Other than the god awful 3rd arc I really didn't mind it. I'll probably end up watching season 3. It probably doesn't deserve all the praise it gets from a lot of people and at the same time doesn't deserve the hate either. I think its a 9/10 anime that was assulted by some awful characters, lazy writing and violently dragged down to a 5-6/10.

There is quite a bit of action and pretty drawings so its probably a good gateway anime to someone who hasn't already been exposed to every anime trope that exists. Plus maybe to 13 year olds Kirito is the badass studmuffin that the girls want to date and the boys want to be. I would have enjoyed it a whole lot more without Kirito as MC because I really don't think there has been an MC I hated more. However I really did enjoy some of the 1st arc's battles and I enjoyed the if you squint real hard you can see something resembling .hack//sign final arc where Kirito was put on the sidelines.

If I were to rank the Not sword online genre shows I've seen it would probably go like this.

1. .hack//sign - still the best, I still watch this series once a year.
2. Grimgar - going to easily make my top 5 in 2016. That clumsy opening battle scene in episode 1 is an all timer.
3. KonoSuba - not sure if they can mine humour out of another season but it was crazy fun for the 1st one.
4. RE: Zero - I'd definitely recommend it. There are a few truly great episodes that are unfortunately surrounded with more than a few awful episodes as well. If I made a 2016 top 10 episodes list RE: Zero might have 2-3 episodes, and yet I don't think Re:Zero would be in my top 10 of 2016.
5. Log Horizon - I really like this show and would have loved it if the 2nd season would just stop with the festivals, the potential harem developing and give me my damn Nyanta arc.
6. The game arc in Tsubasa - the best arc in TRC season one, so I'll put it in.
7. SAO
8 .hack//roots - There are a few moments/lines in it that make it somewhat watchable plus it has a great soundtrack. However it should have been no longer than 12 episodes. Stretching out an anime about an a-hole MC's descent into further a-holedom that long doesn't work.     
« Last Edit: October 18, 2016, 10:26:01 PM by Rook »

Aeolus

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Re: Sword Art Online - anime about MMORPG in virtual reality
« Reply #10 on: October 18, 2016, 06:16:47 AM »
I maintain that the first half of Season 1 of SAO is good.

And then everything else is horrible.  Even if I do like Suguha.

Meh. Even early on, Kirito was pulling crap like his exclusive Dual Wielding skill and getting his totes wicked Black Swordsman reputation going. Though I will concede that at least that portion of the show benefited from having actual stakes (even if all the regulars were too well plot armored for it to really matter).

It also at least does enough to say "well he did all that so quickly 'cause he was a beta tester" even though it still barely made sense.

Either way, one of the worst popular anime I've ever seen, and pretty much everything I dislike about anime put into one - the OP Gary Stu, the Harems, the tenticle fanservice, the incest - it's got literally everything.

The Betamax explanation only covers the initial leg up he has over the rest of the cast within the first two episodes. Everything after that though is entirely due to his special-snowflake-ness since he had only made progress through the first couple of floors during the beta, and once the foreknowledge runs out, he's back to running things blind and praying to the RNGods like everyone else. Not to mention that even the head programmer/big bad is all "wait, what?" at Kirito's Dual Wielding.

I also lol at the head programmer's karma-dodging skills (gets hundreds of people killed and costs the few survivors years of their physical lives to pursue his personal powerfantasy; dies within his dreamworld, has his legacy passed down to countless other MMOs, turns into Kirito's personal Deus Ex Machina button, and even Kirito kinda sorta looks up to the guy).
In my vision, I see that one of us is going to KO the other.

Arvis

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Re: Sword Art Online - anime about MMORPG in virtual reality
« Reply #11 on: October 18, 2016, 10:48:48 AM »
the OP Gary Stu, the Harems, the tenticle fanservice, the incest - it's got literally everything.

Really hard to argue with this.

(And *Marty's* avatar scares me for some reason)

Yeah, Marty's avatar is horrifying and the worst thing I've ever seen in these forums.
"You know, you're pretty cool too, Arvis.  You like good music, good games, and good tennis." - Divingfalcons

Towns Car Marty

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Re: Sword Art Online - anime about MMORPG in virtual reality
« Reply #12 on: October 18, 2016, 11:44:54 AM »
Happy Halloween!

Artimicia

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Re: Sword Art Online - anime about MMORPG in virtual reality
« Reply #13 on: October 18, 2016, 06:03:10 PM »
I've seen it I thought it was ok, not my favorite, but it had some entertaining and interesting moments I think.
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Re: Sword Art Online - anime about MMORPG in virtual reality
« Reply #14 on: October 19, 2016, 10:44:36 AM »
I've seen it I thought it was ok, not my favorite, but it had some entertaining and interesting moments I think.

That's a pretty cool way to describe Marty's avatar.
"You know, you're pretty cool too, Arvis.  You like good music, good games, and good tennis." - Divingfalcons