Anime Sunday: Sword Art Online II

Michael Blaker
Game Industry News is running the best blog posts from people writing about the game industry. Articles here may originally appear on Michael's blog, Windborne's Story Eatery.

SAO_II_artwork

This week for Anime Sunday I’m covering something I don’t normally do, a second season of an adaptation that I’ve previously reviewed. It’s Sword Art Online II! Spoilers after the jump for the first season and first four Light Novels.

Plot Synopsis: Sword Art Online II is a 2014 science fantasy Japanese anime series based on the Sword Art Online light novel series written by Reki Kawahara. It serves as the sequel to the 2012 Sword Art Online anime series and follows the events of volumes 5 and 6 of the light novels, titled “Phantom Bullet”. After putting an end to the SAO incident in 2024 and rescuing Asuna in Alfheim Online (ALO), Kazuto Kirigaya finally returned to the real world to resume a normal life with his friends once more. However, when a string of deaths begin occurring in connection to a virtual reality game called “Gun Gale Online” (GGO), Kikuoka Seijiro of the Ministry of Internal Affairs enlists Kazuto to once again don his character “Kirito” and enter the virtual world to investigate the cause of the deaths. While meeting new allies, Kirito may be faced with his most dangerous challenge yet—a player known only as “Death Gun” with the ability to kill a person in the real world by killing their virtual avatar.

Plot: The plot in this season thus far has been amazing, and it helps that it gives much more insight into Kazuto and new female lead Sinon’s minds. The previous season didn’t do this at all pretty much and the Anime suffered greatly from it, especially in the second half. I also find that while Kirito still is incredibly cool, Sinon is the star of the show. I really enjoy her compared to Asuna and Suguha from the previous season. Asuna was characterized terribly in the second half of the first season and American’s just get squicked by Suguha’s affection towards Kazuto. Sinon on the other hand feels much more human compared to them, and she kicks major ass in her debut episode, the second episode.

Artwork: I’ve always loved the artwork that A-1 productions does for SAO and this season is no different. Amazing work.

Music: The music is just as amazing as the first seasons, if not better.

Overall: If you enjoyed SAO’s first season at all you need to watch this.

For those who like: Science Fiction, Action, Adventure, Mysteries, Thriller, Mind Games, Kick ass female lead, Kick ass male lead.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above, but can you hate really hate that? Give it a try through episode two at least.

 

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