I’ve always been a fan of animes which have a finite end. You see them dotted around, usually lasting 12 episodes or 24-25 episodes. Sword Art Online falls into the latter category, however (without spoiling the series too much) half way through, there is a slight change up, which keeps the anime fresh.
Set in the not too distant future, Sword Art Online tells the tale of a young boy, named Kirigaya Kazuto (AKA Kirito) who is obsessed with video games. So much so, he was selected to be a part of a closed-Beta test for a new title “Sword Art Online”, a game in which the player can fight monsters, level up, and acquire new weapons and armour. The game utilises a piece of hardware , called NerveGear, which the user places over their head, to fully immerse themselves into the RPG world (very similar to the movie “The Matrix”)
The game is launched world wide and sure enough Kirito knows the best tactics and weapons to use as he was a part of the Beta test. However, his life is changed forever, when the GameMaster reveals himself, and removes the “Log Out” feature from the game. Similar to “The Matrix” if the user is forcibly removed from the game, their mind won’t cope with the trauma and the user will die. The only way to escape the game is to reach the maximum level. From here, Kirito is taken on an amazing quest in which he meets new friends and learns a lot about what is important in life.
If you’re a fan of video games, you will love this anime. I was captivated from start to finish, and was a little sad that it came to and end. The manga actually continues a lot further than the anime, so hopefully we will see a new series soon. Especially with this image which appeared recently advertising a TV special. Could we see a second series? Or something else entirely?