It's really nice but it should have ended after episode 14 it would be a really nice ending
Absolutely awesome anime !! It has everything, a well told story, action, emotion and beautiful animations. Sounds and pictures are fitting well together. Every fan of MMOs and anime has to watch this.I'm very excited about the 2nd season.
G A R B A G E.
Don't get fooled by the first episode. This show is pretty bad (at least if you expect quality writing out of it). The main problem for me was the lack of story. They setup a life or death siutation but instead of showing the players coping with it we get a timeskip and a chronological adaptation of the source material (light novels) which means lots of irrelevant side stories. The stakes are mainly ignored and hardly anyone works toward the goal of completing the game (clearing all 100 floors). When the SOA story arc comes to an end it is abrupt and makes no sense at all due plotarmor. The second arc is still airing but luckily it'll be over soon. All changes have been for the worse. Another issue are the characters; cardboard cutouts and personality changes on demand. Most of the women (or better girls) tend to exist to form a harem for our MC. Speaking of which, this show goes full-shonen as far as his powers go. It is ridiculous what he can pull off (getting his own skills in an mmo, hacking, highest leveled player in the game when all you see is him idlying and helping lowlevel players.. it get's even worse in the second arc).Given that it is an action show you would at least expect the fights to be good. Unfortunatly these are a letdown. The bossfights usually look rather bad. Not only because of the CGI but the way they animated it. There is hardly a battle choreography and they overuse still frames. You can literally see that the only things animated are the flashing lights which are supposed to represent sword strikes.Add to this the ever increasing fan-service, silly dialogue, unbelievable romance and countless things that make no sense.
Due to reasons I cannot understand this show is popular and sells really well so a second season could happen.
Great Show, can't wait for GunGale-Online ^_~
It has been pretty good so far.The amount of accurate MMO references has been surprising as well.
I realy loved this show, the store, the characters, the awsome animation, just excelent 10pts.
Sword Art Online (Season 1) - 7/10
Despite what many users and critics would have you believe, I advise anyone interested by the prospect of the series give it a chance before writing it off entirely. In fact, I was planning on doing just that after reading a few of the reviews posted by members on here. I started watching anime on a fan level at the very start of this past Fall 2013 season, and like many was dragged in by the momentum of Attack on Titan. A coworker tried to get me to watch SAO and I kinda feigned interest and said I'd get around to it. I had already made up my mind not to watch the series because of the criticism it's received. A few months later (or last week for me) a few friends attempted to get me to watch the show, and so I started. And watched some more. I downed the entire first season in a week, and I can honestly admit happily that I enjoyed it much more than I hated it. It seems as though there are two types of people who review here: the guys who think everything is awesome, and the guys that'll nitpick each episode for inconsistencies. It seems the more popular a show gets the more it needs to be scrutinized. If this were merely some underground fan favorite I doubt people would take it as seriously. I'm going to try and be the in-between guy who chooses to stay unbiased, and will review the series for all it's merits and all it's downfalls, and I'll stay away from determining whether it's worth the praise it receives or not. That being said this first season was FAR from perfect, but I've yet to watch a perfect television series. And seriously, at the end of the day, this is a cartoon. If you've yet to see the season, spoilers follow.
Part 1: Aincrad Saga
The year is 2022. Ten thousand individuals login to the just released VRMMORPG (virtual reality massively multiplayer online role playing game) Sword Art Online, and then the worst possible scenario for anyone with a fear of virtual reality becomes their new reality: they can no longer logout. Nor can they remove their Nervegear helmets, or else the system will kill them. And worse yet, if they die in the game, they die in reality. Their goal is to reach the 100th floor and after defeating the endgame boss, they can all be set free. 2 years later and 40% of the players have lost their virtual and literal lives.
I will admit that I am an avid fan of MMO's and love the idea of just leveling up your character, getting him stronger and stronger ad infinitum. There was a time where I was more than addicted to World of Warcraft. Had a character that had a play time of over two months! But SAO is a very different beast. The approach of having 100 floors was interesting and new. It felt like a classic game with 100 stages, but stuffed into a futuristic MMO. But I had two problems with this setup. 1) The show never explained how big each floor was. You just assumed each floor had special stuff only located there, like towns and forests, and lakes... And 2) they skipped so much of the game within the first few episodes of the show. This was particularly upsetting to me, because I'm all about the linear storytelling going on from battle to battle. I eat up all that filler stuff. Instead they skipped from the boss of the first floor to two years later when they're on floor 74... What?! I understand the purpose of this however, and that's because the story they wanted to tell took place primarily at that last month that SAO was still active. I feel they really could've delved deeper into the lore of the world instead of focusing so much on character woes. This saga should have lasted the entire 25 episode run so as to iron out certain potential plot holes and encourage character development with some of the tertiary characters. Another strange case about this MMO is the lack of character class. An RPG without magic?!?
I'm surprised that so many were upset by the love story that blossomed between Kirito and Asuna. It felt extremely natural and I felt they spent an appropriate amount of time on their tale. It didn't fall short for me. Much of what they as characters were experiencing by the second year was surprisingly relatable. Although the primary objective was to free themselves from Aincrad, they had become so accustomed to living in this world that they considered it more real than reality itself. It's only natural then to find yourself in love with another that you party with on a daily basis. I found their relationship occasionally very touching to be honest, and was fully invested. I wasn't a huge fan however of their "daughter" Yui. That was a plot point I just could not stand.
I was constantly amazed at Kirito's blatantly overpowered stats. I was sure that it would become old soon, but the more it was showcased the more I digged it. The mysterious way in which he was given the special ability to dual wield... Excellent. Knowing in retrospect that it was actually just the GM granting him special rights simply to spice things up a bit and have a bit of fun is amusing, and a satisfying reason in my opinion. From the beginning I didn't consider the GM a villain, because it didn't seem as if he had much of a motive other than the fact that he could just do it. It struck me more so as the work of an eccentric visionary, who's bored and lonely. When Kirito lost that duel, due to what appeared to be a glitch or hack in the system, I thought for sure it must be the GM or someone in cahoots with him. I'm surprised it took so long to realize it.
That last battle was interesting to say the very least. I can understand why many didn't care for it. The way I see it is that these guys are stuck in this virtual world for two years, getting brain-fed data constantly. After that long you'd expect there to begin to be strange anomalies when the game interferes with heightened levels of emotions. Yes, "the power of love" strikes again, but I think it's more than that. I think it's the will to beat the system, and nobody had more will than Kirito. I'm surprised this was one of the first moments where glitches were realized on screen. You'd expect them to be just slightly more commonplace. And as to why they weren't dead at the end... Well the GM congratulated them on jointly beating the game. Enough said really.
Part 2: Fairy Dance Saga
An RPG with magic!!! Finally. But now it's full of fairies... Interesting. The premise of the second half of the season begins with Kirito waking up, but somehow Asuna didn't. We find out that somewhere near 300 players from SAO didn't make it out for whatever reason. And worse yet, some creepy dude wants to marry Asuna while she's in a coma! Kirito soon finds out there is a new VRMMORPG called Alfheim out and he gets a tip that Asuna is trapped inside this world. He goes in, gets the unknowing help of his busty step-sister, and attempts a rescue mission.
As an MMO, Alfheim feels far more organic than Sword Art Online did. Perhaps it was the ability to log off. Perhaps it was the racial choices and magic capabilities. I'm not sure. But because it felt more organic didn't necessarily mean the show benefitted from it. Where my issue with the first half of the season was that they sped through over a year and a half of story, this second half of the season takes place in, what, 3 days? The tone becomes drastically different, and in many ways it feels like a completely different show. This threw me off balance quite a bit. I liked the idea, but not the execution and I'm sure others felt the same. If this is the true source of people hating the series then I can't argue with you there. It angered me too. But I didn't let it affect my view of the overall arc too much.
The stakes are far different in this half of the series. In the first half the big issues were not being able to log out, and if you die you die. But in this half you CAN log out AND you get to respawn. You just lose all your gear (or something?). This wasn't fully explained, or maybe I missed it. Instead the real stake only existed for Kirito and Asuna. She was trapped by some horny maniac, and he was determined to save her before she got married off. Because the story didn't have enough breathing room it all felt more unrealistic despite the more realistic game. Again, this could have been fleshed out far better over a full season.
One thing I really did like was that Kirito's stats carried over into this game from SAO. Basically he was the best before he even began. Makes sense he'd be far stronger than the strongest player in this game due to the fact that Alfheim had only been going strong for about a year. And you know what, despite not liking Yui's character in the first half of the season, she was ridiculously cute throughout the second half. Seriously. She slept in his pocket.
The second half of the series, although inherently not as violent, had far more fan service, and weird sexual stuff all around. I don't consider Sugu's strange love for her adoptive brother to be incestual, but it's definitely... strange. Regardless, although the subject matter was out there, it felt organic and natural, and the resolution with the real world confrontation was probably the most emotional scene the anime offered. You couldn't help but feel bad for her. And yet she still aided him in his flight to victory. (See what I did there?)
The rape scene was particularly unsettling, and I didn't care for a second of it. I hope that's what the creators of the series intended because that's how it came across for me personally, and hopefully for other viewers. It was disgusting. But that's when the original GM intervened, becoming the god in the machine, allowing Kirito admin access, and the ability to beat the system. Perhaps I'm a sap, but I'm not used to watching stuff with happy endings. The season was given a nice ending.
Part 3: Sword Art Online Extra Edition & beyond
I won't get too caught up in the Extra Edition synopsis, because there's not all that much to it seeing as how it's mostly a synopsis of the entire first season with swimsuits in-between clips. But if it tells me anything, it's that the first and second half of the season were two very different storiess, with many differing strengths and weaknesses. It may not be a popular opinion, but I do believe it would be a far stronger series if the two arcs were each given a full 25 episode season. I'm sure that would lead to criticism of filler episodes, but if it would make the series a stronger one in the long run, I'm all for it. And it wouldn't feel like such a weird switch right there in the middle of the story.
I was very confused with the resolution of the world seed. Essentially everyone has access to this world seed, so everyone can make their own world with their own rules? I don't see how that's a good thing, seeing as how the first two worlds were run by madmen. And there was an interesting tease to the future of the series. But hopefully they explain better in season 2, which was snazzily introduced earlier yesterday. The Phantom Bullet saga eh? I hope this one gets a full run of episodes as well. Space out the story a little bit. In conclusion. It's a flawed series, but it's by no means unwatchable or bad.
wow! perfect!, hope there's a season 2
Biggest dissapointment of the decade.
I really like this show, but I also understand some of the hate for it. Though I don't think those people understand where SAO came from.
Imagine if I told you there was an anime about a guy trapped in a video game. He falls for this girl who is a high ranking member of a guild which helps people. Together they form a sort of a power couple. The fearless leader and the rebel those in power keep trying to hold back. They discover a little girl who becomes their child, but she turns out to be an AI designed to monitor the mental health of the players, and is being controlled by another AI that is trying to assert control over the whole game. And that when he finally logs out, they are able to meet in real life.
That's not SAO. That's .hack//SIGN, and SAO started out as a .hack fan fic, kind of like how 50 Shades started out as a Twilight fanfic. But, the problem with .hack was, after its first season, they began a different story with a whole new cast. We all wondered what happened to the original cast. And then the third season, again, a whole new cast, with no one from the first two. SAO answered that question. Instead of erasing the existing cast, it worked the existing ones into the second arc. It did, to an extent, follow .hack's second season, Legend of the Twilight, with its second arc, Fairy Dance. Like Fairy Dance, Legend of the Twilight focused on a pair of "not really siblings but cousins" with a complicated, pseudo-romantic relationship, and the main character has his girl taken away from him early on, like Kirito lost Asuna in Fairy Dance. Even the realisation that Tsukasa (Kirito's basis) was really a girl was recycled in SAO II when Kirito is given a feminine avatar. In .hack, Subaru (Asuna's basis) was handicapped, which is reflected twice in Fairy Dance. One with her being in the birdcage, and two with her needing physical therapy at the end that Kirito clearly didn't. Most of the rest of the characters match up, too. Bear became Aegil, Krim became Klein, and of course Aura became Yui. (BT didn't seem to become anyone, but Leafa resembles her. As for Sora, the player killer, Recon from the Fairy Dance arc is probably the closest equivalent, the awkward kid who just doesn't seem to fit in.)
But SAO didn't plagiarize .hack. It isn't a carbon copy. SAO light novel author Reki Kawahara changed enough so that it isn't a direct ripoff. Most fans wouldn't see the connection unless you pointed it out to them. After that it's quite unmistakable. They took a great idea that maybe wasn't executed so well, and they made something better out of it. I'm not sure how the courts would come down on it if a lawsuit was filed, in Japan or the US, but since no suits have been filed, it's just a big win for anime fans. We get the full benefit of both series. We can choose one or the other, or we can choose both.
Whether you like SAO or not, if you have a strong opinion on it, I implore you to go to its own "World Seed" and watch .hack//SIGN. It's a good anime, but it is very slow going. You will notice that the music is incredible (Yuki Kajiura composed the score to both .hack//SIGN and SAO, but she also composed the songs that play throughout), the character design is simple yet endearing, and the world design is inspired, though not nearly as detailed as SAO. It's a much more moody show, as Tsukasa (Kirito) being the only one who can't log out. Also, he's not a swordsman at all, he's a Wavemaster (wizard), but really, he's a mopey loner who only finds a backbone at the very end. There's almost no action, and the characters spend most of the time talking about a mysterious item called the "Key of the Twilight" which may or may not do any number of things, including allow Tsukasa to log out. It's not a bad show, and in some ways it surpasses SAO. The music, for one, is far and above anything I've ever seen in anime — that is, until I saw Kimi no Na wa (Your name). It's that good. (Noir was kind of the same way. Yuki Kajiura worked on that, too.) The story, while long and drawn out, is actually quite good. However, it's never been released in HD, so DVD and 480p is the limit. I generally prefer to watch anime in English, as that is the language I understand, but the .hack//SIGN dub is simply not very good. I recommend watching it in Japanese with English subtitles. (Meanwhile, SAO has a great dub.)
After you watch .hack//SIGN; that is, after Tsukasa logs out and the emotional real-world scene, skip the Return and especially the Gift OVAs, and watch the Liminality OVAs. They follow the .hack//SIGN story in the real world.
Once you're done with all of that, please watch SAO again. You'll see where SAO's writer got his ideas, and what he had to work with, and really, the monumental task he had of taking an existing, fairly well liked show and making it better in every way he could. Did he succeed? SAO does not exist in a vacuum. It's not an original work, and it's not really fair to judge it as one. If you're watching SAO at all, that says you're a fan of the video game genre, and you should at least want to know where SAO came from, especially if you want to understand how high it really soars.
I don't know the mind of Reki Kawahara and what he sought to improve most from .hack//SIGN, or even how much .hack//SIGN influenced him, or what other series I may or may not also know about influenced his work. If I had to guess, having seen both series, I would say it was the changing of the cast with each season. He could have dismissed Kirito and Asuna at the end and then focused on Leafa (who may or may not be Kirito's sister) and other people, just like .hack did, and it probably still would have been decent. But Kirito and his love for Asuna is central to his story, and it's part of all five arcs (or six, if you count the Ordinal Scale film). So I'd say that change is the reason for SAO. Because characters are important. Kirito's assertion in SAO, echoing Subaru's assertion in .hack//SIGN, that people are who they are regardless of whether they're in the game or the real world, and Kirito's enduring effort to fulfill his promise to protect his friends serves as the backbone of the series. If you take Kirito, Asuna, and Yui out, like .hack did with its second season, it's just another .hack clone.
When I first watched the first episode, my mind was officially blown, I mean the concept was superb and I had never seen any anime with that concept. But it really goes off in another direction right from the 2nd episode. And worse it suddenly becomes harem anime.Plot is skipped many time as they can't adapt every level for every episode. But that's forgivable but some fights are also skipped.Like there was this situation where a huge skeleton like scorpion level boss appears who has like 5 sets of health bars at the end of the episode. But in the next ep it has 0.1% of the health and is skipped. I mean really when thrown at a cliffhanger like that one expects too much of a fight. But this is just absurd.
About the harem part I really dunno why the writers chose it, every girl Kirito meets wants his d*ck for some reason, even his sister lols.
Good things are the fights and the solid game concept.
Much better then the first season.
tbh I only liked the first half of the first season. Everything else felt like an average slice of life anime. 6/10 for me
Love The Online VR Animes...
FIRST SEASON. The first part, the world of SAO, apart from fightings and MMOs stuff, is interesting and sometimes makes you think about the reality and existence, and even the relations established in virtual worlds. But second part, when world of Alfheim get into the show, is totally (s)crap.
This show had a great start but became just a little bit above average
Na segunda temporada, está faltando um episódio. Nota-se que a um espaço maior que uma semana (pula do dia 04 p/ o dia 18) Fica a dica pra correção e controle da sequência.
I'd just like to say it's down as Ended but series 3 should be coming out in summer 2016
I wish I could rate this show lower then 1/10
As lutas precisam ser mais elaboradas e empolgantes, fora isso é show!
Great Show, Must See ^_~
best show ever
It's really the premise you love so much. Being stuck in an MMORPG! I mean how cool is that? The way the story played out is not so fun. You could have explored many episodes of life in SAO, instead we are catapulted up the levels as swiftly as possible. I did love seeing Kirito develop but we could have explored the world in a less haphazard way. Not a fan of the Alfheim arc at all. Hate Suguho and only mildly like her Leafa self. So a great start which explains the hype. Many people can't write a good ending to save their life so I'm never too worried about endings, they are almost universally bad.
S2 has been confirmed... maybe trap Kirito won't be as bad but I'm sure that will probably not be the case. http://www.swordart-online.net/ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K0Ghr_rbJmQ
It had a strong beginning, disappointing how the rest of the series is so irrelevant to the beginning of the series... Still I enjoyed watching it even thought it wasn't at it's best.
What the hell happened? Everything went so fast from a good TV show to a completely mediocre slice of life in episode 11 then got better in 13, and from 15 to 25 is just frustratingly painful to watch, I would be better off watching endless eight than this second arc. Btw, I fucking hate Kirito
Didnt know what the show wanted to do there plot was all over the place.
episodes 7 below is not is not connected. the story begins from 8.this is the good series. i wonder is there a new season until level 100...
sp1ti sums it up quite well. This series is overhyped to hell and nowhere near as good as it should have been. So much could have been done with a premise like this but sadly it ultimately fell way short of greatness and wandered into very standard Shounen cliche territory.
It wasn't without it's good points. Despite all its faults I did genuinely enjoy the first half of the series (the Aincrad arc), I just really wish the entire 25 episodes had been spend on this, instead of abruptly ending it at the halfway mark and moving onto Alfheim, at which point all the redeeming qualities of the series fall away one by one and we're left with... well, not much.
Judging by the popularity of the series and the fact there are, to my knowledge, 2 more arcs to go, I'm guessing it's only a matter of time until this gets a second season. I'm not really sure I'll be watching it though.