Sword Art Online is a story taking place in a fictional Virtual Reality MMORPG. The series has been around for a long time, seeing success in basically every medium, including the video game series that first saw release in 2013. The games mainly take place in an altered storyline from the main series, save for the most recent release, Sword Art Online: Alicization Lycoris, which sticks to the canonic storyline. There are currently 6 main title games for consoles, some originally released for the PS Vita, and later being ported to PS4.
Sword Art Online isn’t mostly known for its video game series, though with a growing number of them now, they may be hard to keep up with.
Fans of the Sword Art Online series can enjoy all of the games on one console, though to varying degrees of quality as different companies are in charge of each game. Though the games have received mixed to average reviews, they do fill a niche that is popular with fans of the series. Though each game in the Sword Art Online series is an RPG first, with a narrative that progresses naturally, the gameplay with each game varies based on the developer and where the game is set. This can range from ground and aerial combat to more of a third-person shooter, all while still maintaining the RPG nature.
Accel World VS Sword Art Online: Millenium Twilight is certainly a mouthful for a title, but it crosses the Accel World and Sword Art Online franchises. The game was developed by Artdink and originally came out in July of 2017 for the PS4 and PS Vita. It utilizes a team-based combat system with 3 party members who can be swapped at any time. Battles take place in an open environment with battles initiating once contact with an enemy occurs, with both ground and aerial combat. There is a floating city called Ryne that contains shops to help progress the player’s characters.
Sword Art Online: Lost Song
In Sword Art Online: Lost Song, players are able to play as characters other than Kirito, the main protagonist of the entire series. The game originally came out for PS3 and PS Vita in March of 2015, and later ported to PS4 in November 2015. The game introduced a flying system that allows players to switch between ground and flight mode at will. While most battles in dungeons take place on the ground, the game introduces the aerial combat that is seen in some later games. Despite playing as other characters than the main protagonist of the series, character customization is limited.
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Sword Art Online: Alicization Lycoris
Alicization Lycoris is the latest Sword Art Online game to come out in July 2020 and is the first game in the series to adapt part of the Alicization arc from the novels. The game branches part of the canon story into an original story route, with the canon part acting as the game’s first part. The game has character customization and multiplayer, but only unlocks after hours of story. The combat is reminiscent of an Action RPG, with boss battles requiring more strategy as they are typically one vs one utilizing a parry mechanic.
Sword Art Online: Hollow Fragment takes the first game Sword Art Online: Infinity Moment that originally released on the PSP, and repackages it into the game’s first half, with minor additions including a new character named Philia. The second half of the game is referred to as “Hollow Area” which allows for new story content, new enemies, new items, and includes multiplayer. It includes new scenes from the original and new quests involving a faction known as the Laughing Coffin guild.
Sword Art Online: Fatal Bullet is set within a different game universe known as Gun Gale Online, an in-game VR Shooter. Though the genre appears different, it is still an RPG where players level up and gain skills. The game is split between the main story and Kirito Mode, the former allowing players to create a custom character and enjoy the game’s main story, while the latter is a mini-campaign focusing on Kirito. The Kirito segment adapts the Death Fun incident into the gameverse. The game features two default endings with a third canonical true ending.
Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization features 4 party members instead of 3, with an Action focused RPG battle system. The game takes place in the in-game VRMMO Sword Art: Origin, with the main protagonist Kirito vowing to help an NPC named Premiere. Premiere is a character who hasn’t been coded into the game and is thus running null code, which causes Kirito to help investigate the problem. The player will encounter Blue Cursor players who are hunting NPCs to the point where they cannot respawn after death. Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization is the game many fans seem to enjoy the most, as it has the perfect balance of enjoyable gameplay and well-paced narrative. Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization is available now on PC, PS4, PS Vita, and Switch.
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