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Sword Art Online tells the story of the world's first Virtual reality Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Player Game and how the first players become trapped within the virtual world. While billed as a sci-fi series, Sword Art Online transcends the single genre and explores multiple stories as the players attempt to cope with their new lives. The series delves deeply into the psychological ramifications of becoming trapped within a virtual world and dives into the psyche of the players. Beyond the psychological trauma the players suffer, the series also wonders what an economic system might look like as well as how a social hierarchy might be established.

At the open of the series we follow a quiet, mysterious young man known only as Kirito as he attends the opening ceremony for Sword Art Online. All the players are tapped into the virtual world utilizing a head piece known as Nerve Gear that ties all five senses into the virtual world and allowing one to experience the world first hand. At the opening ceremony the creator of the game appears and informs all players that they are now trapped and their only choice to exit is to win the game by battling to the one-hundredth floor of the game's tower. To make matters even worse the players are also informed that if they die in the game, they die in the real world as well. Our focal character, Kirito, soon find company in the brash, bossy, and boorish Asuna as a companion and fellow trapped gamer. Through the series these two function as the main characters through which we see the slice of life aspect of the series.

Originally produced as a Japanese light novel series by Reki Kawahara, the anime adaptation for Sword Art Online was announced at Dengeki Bunko Autumn Festival 2011; to be published by Aniplex, produced by A-1 Pictures, and directed by Tomohiko Ito. It began airing in July, 2012 with a simulcast stream on Crunchyroll.

Aniplex
1 Season, 25 Episodes
December 8, 2016
Anime
8.0/10
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Sword Art Online Full Episode Guide

  • Kirigaya Kazuto has beaten death twice but there is one more thing he must do.

  • Kirito, Asuna, and Yui are finally together again, but the locks placed on Asuna are unbreakable. Before they have a chance to come up with a plan, the fairy king makes his grand entrance.

  • Even though a wall has been built between Kirito and Sugu, he must save Asuna. The next time he challenges the final dungeon he won't be alone.

  • Kirito's determination to save Asuna borders on the insane. His reckless is stopped when Leafa suddenly logs out.

  • Kirito and Leafa have made it to the meeting and Kirito's bluff as an ambassador has been called out. If he can survive in a fight against the Salamanders General Eugene, his plan to prevent a war might work.

  • Something isn't right; Recon has sent Leafa a message I was right. Be careful. S." What does he mean and will Leafa and Kirito have the time to figure it out?

  • Leafa is making enemies leaving her area and group to team up with Kirito. On their way to neutral Territory, they speak more of the rules and areas of the ALO.

  • As Kirito learns about the game from Leafa and the hatred between the races, Asuna learns the truth of her role from the Fairy King.

  • A new MMO allows users to fly and encourages player killing. Kirito has joined this new game in search of Asuna and is pleasantly surprised with what he finds.

  • Kirigaya is adjusting to his life outside of the game, but he hasn't forgotten about Asuna. A recent visit to her in the hospital, he meets Sugou Nobuyuki.

  • Game over.

  • While enjoying a fishing tournment Kirito receieves an urgent e-mail from the leader of the guild requesting their return.

  • Yulier, second in command, of the Liberation Army has approached Kirito and Asuna for help saving her friend and her guild.

  • The newly married couple is enjoying their time away from the front lines. But a new guest will take them all the way back to the beginning.

  • Kirito has agreed to a duel with the head of the Blood Alliance Knights. If Kirito wins, Asuna is free to leave the Knights and if he loses?

  • To save a group of players and Asuna from a Boss character, Kirito is forced to play his trump card.

  • After 2 years, people have got used to living in SAO, with a dwindling front line it might just be up to Kirito and Asuna to continue the charge.

  • A trip to get a new sword leaves Kirito battling a dragon and his fears.

  • Kirito has figured out the how and now he has to figure out the why.

  • Silca is known as Dragon Tamer Silca, but after leaving her group she is caught and her pet, Pina paid the ultimate price. Before she is killed, Kirito saves her and offers her a choice.

  • Kirito has finally joined a guild made up of close friends in reality. Everything is going well until a tragic accident changes Kirito completely.

  • It's been one month since the players have been locked in the game. 2000 people have died; the first floor hasn't been cleared yet.

  • It's launch day for one of the most highly-anticipated video games of all time. Join the character "Kirito" as he begins his journey in the virtual world of Sword Art Online.

Most Popular Sword Art Online Episodes

  • Season 1 Episode 25 E 25 12/22/2012
  • Season 1 Episode 5 A Crime Within the Walls 8/04/2012
  • Season 1 Episode 15 Return 10/13/2012
  • Season 1 Episode 1 The World of Swords 7/07/2012
  • Season 1 Episode 12 Yui's Heart 9/22/2012

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