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Sword Art Online II – 15

OP2 Sequence

OP2: 「courage」 by 戸松遥 (Tomatsu Haruka)

「湖の女王」 (Mizuumi no Jyouu)
“Queen of the Lake”

As much as I enjoyed the GGO arc, the start of this arc and how this first episode played out was exactly what I expected wanted from a second season of SAO. While I can’t put my finger on exactly what it was that sent chills down my back, you can bet I’m excited to see the show go back to its roots and focus on our main group (plus Sinon!) as they try to tackle their new quest.

Welcome Back to ALO

After Kirito’s short adventure to the steampunk inspired Gun Gale Online where he dominated the competition and became one of five people to be crowned the victor of GGO’s largest competitive event, it was nice to see the setting change back to the colorful world of Alfheim Online. While we’ve already seen a little of what the game has to offer, I personally can’t wait to see how deep the show goes as it tries to explain the mechanics behind the game. From hopefully filling in the gaps after saying things like “You just have to chant to use magic” to showing us just how many unique classes exist (Was there always a ranged class?), I really hope we get a better look at the game this time around.

Second Times the Charm?

While I did enjoy GGO arc for the most part, I probably wouldn’t choose it as my favorite arc. Sure it had a cool steampunk inspired world and more guns then you could shake a stick at, but without a doubt it was missing some of the that secret sauce that makes the show so fun to watch. Luckily, it seems that this arc has thrown any reservations out the window and has busted out more than more than enough secret sauce to douse us in. Leaving a lot of room for things to happen down the road, I love how the story’s starting small but leaving an impression that something even crazier is going on behind the scenes. By dropping little hints like sentient NPCs giving quests without human input to trick players into doing their bidding, it definitely feels like something’s a bit off.

Looking Ahead

I think this week’s episode has fully restored my faith in this show. Pulling out all the things that made me personally fall in love with the show, I think it’s clear everything works better when it’s all about the game. Sure the story will reel its head in anytime now but I for one am really happy with how this new arc opened up. Also, wasn’t that opening sequence freaking awesome? Anyways I’ll catch you all next week when we’ll hopefully see the entire party take on the King of Giants!

P.S. Also, am I the only one exhausted from staying up last night to watch Samsung White defeat Star Horn Royal Club? q_q #nosleep #sswwin

 

ED2 Sequence

ED2: 「No More Time Machine」 by LiSA

October 19, 2014 at 10:38 pm
73 comments »
  • October 19, 2014 at 10:47 pmGoXDS

    IIRC there are no real classes, just Races. the game is heavily skill dependent. there’s no real “ranged class” as much as just users that emphasize long-range magic. I could be wrong (since I can no longer refer to the source).

    I was wondering what they were gonna do about the cut out portion of Fairy Dance. they chose to summarize it in 2 min ^^;

    • October 20, 2014 at 2:07 amHanabira.Kage

      This. There are only races, no classes.

      Your “class” is determined by how you add your stats, level your skills and (especially now with the addition of Sword Skills) the weapon you use.

    • October 25, 2014 at 11:28 pmschwegburt

      So it’s basically Elder Scrolls online without the fail?

  • October 19, 2014 at 10:55 pmReianz

    Does anyone know if this is the famous “Rasario Arc” everyone’s been talking about? Because I have no idea…

    • October 19, 2014 at 11:04 pmThe Green One

      This arc is called Calibur and it will be three episodes long with this one being the first. Mother’s Rosario comes after that.

    • October 20, 2014 at 10:59 amRaijin

      At this point, though, I’m getting a little concerned. If Caliber takes 3 episodes, then it will only give us 7 episodes for Mother’s Rosario.

      I understand that the LN version was only 1 volume instead of 2 volumes like GGO, but it’s still cutting it close. Why did they waste an entire episode on recaps last week?!

      • October 20, 2014 at 7:17 pmpinky

        to be fair it wasn’t a real episode (hence it was called 14.5), only a recap episode so it doesn’t count towards the episode list.

      • October 21, 2014 at 3:03 amAnonymousperson

        Eh, I think 7 episodes is enough. It wasn’t that long. Though I guess 2 episodes could have worked for Caliber instead.
        Best arc coming soon, woo.

      • October 21, 2014 at 4:39 amLyfe

        Mothers Rosario is only 1 light novel in length, while Caliber is 1 chapter in length. 7-8 episodes for Rosario is more than enough.

  • October 19, 2014 at 11:00 pmLaughingMan

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

    • October 19, 2014 at 11:05 pmThe Green One

      I don’t see the gun that’s being held to your head forcing you to watch it, you can walk away from it any time you want.

      • October 19, 2014 at 11:14 pmLaughingMan

        Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

      • October 20, 2014 at 7:09 amKurisu Vi Britannia

        Don’t lie, Death Gun is watching him from the shadows.

    • October 19, 2014 at 11:47 pmDualash

      *sigh* First of all, why are you commenting if you don’t even watch the show, there’s no point to doing this. Additionally, while of course there’s going to be ups and downs with the anime, you’re just insulting it immaturely when others are calmly stating their thoughts of the show with some sensibility. If you don’t like the show, just leave it alone, and watch something else.

    • October 20, 2014 at 2:47 amCrook

      Your name kinda contradicts your attitude. Or the other way around.

  • October 19, 2014 at 11:10 pmHalfDemonInuyasha

    It probably feels a lot better than GGO or perhaps even better than season 1 of SAO because, for once, it really feels like the characters are just playing a really big game for enjoyment (for now anyway) and not forced to play it (a certain way) because they’ll die in real life if they lose. Season 1 of SAO and the GGO arc this season didn’t really have so much a “game” feel, aside from when they talked about certain aspects of the game, but rather it felt a lot more like real life because a lot of real life problems were brought in and mixed together with events which ended up making things a lot more serious.

    • October 20, 2014 at 2:03 amReikakou

      This Arc, the quest in particular, has a very serious implications to the whole world of ALO if not done right.

    • October 20, 2014 at 5:50 amMgMaster

      but rather it felt a lot more like real life because a lot of real life problems were brought in and mixed together with events which ended up making things a lot more serious.

      That’s exactly what I enjoyed about them tbh(much more GGO than S1 SAO though) but then again,I’m not much of a fan of anime set in a mmo/any other game world(even though I’m a gamer myself,although I don’t play mmos anymore). So I’d say it’s a weakeness in the eyes of some while a strength in the eyes of others,heh.

  • October 19, 2014 at 11:19 pmGinobi47

    As long as Sinon Ass Online is still here, SAO2 will remain in my to watch list

  • October 19, 2014 at 11:25 pmPancakes

    After the letdown of the GGO climax this episode was a pleasant surprise. Just adventuring with no OP Kirito shenanigans or excessive harem fawning. Of course that can change pretty damn fast, but I’ll stay positive we can get one arc without the ubiquitous SAO tropes.

    Also the Sinon fan service continues apace. Those cat ears and tail are there for a reason, just consider that less than accidental tail pulling :P

  • October 20, 2014 at 12:23 aminfo600

    This episode was more fun to watch when compared to GGO in general…maybe…(my mind’s still not conclusive on GGO verdict)

    OTOH:
    http://randomc.net/image/Sword%20Art%20Online/Sword%20Art%20Online%20II%20-%2015%20-%20Large%2022.jpg
    This scene looked better than what I have imagined. xD

  • October 20, 2014 at 12:40 amReikakou

    Is there really a need for Asuna to be bathing when she receives Kirito’s call? lol

    Kirito’s one lucky bastard for having Asuna for himself. ;)

    Show Spoiler ▼

  • October 20, 2014 at 12:43 amkagehina13

    that opening song alone makes this episode already worth a watch. The last arc had way too many ups and downs in quality, I’m really hoping this arc does better. It’s so far succeeded.

  • October 20, 2014 at 12:54 amdan

    i’ve read some comments on other pages saying the new OP sucks.. i don’t think is thaaat bad (the song), because visually its awesome, but re-using past scenes (from S1 and GGO arc) its the downside

  • October 20, 2014 at 1:01 amd1roni

    This look like interesting arc, Just the quest for rar item bring life to the show and the promising of trambile in Kirito and asuna Relationship move the character development forward.

    • October 20, 2014 at 1:26 amReikakou

      That arc is simply not JUST a quest for EXCALIBUUUUR~! EXCALIBUR~!

      It has a much larger implications for the entire world ALO. Kirito and crew just did the quest in ‘just in the nick time’ fashion.

  • October 20, 2014 at 1:12 amSaburau

    I want to watch more slice of life in an MMO, or slice of virtual life I should say.

    I mean, I want to see how they(Kirito and co.) live their lives in the game world.

  • October 20, 2014 at 1:17 amLGrey

    http://randomc.net/image/Sword%20Art%20Online/Sword%20Art%20Online%20II%20-%2015%20-%20Large%2018.jpg

    The tail! Not the tail!

    http://randomc.net/image/Sword%20Art%20Online/Sword%20Art%20Online%20II%20-%2015%20-%20Large%2019.jpg

    I’ll murder you if you do that again!

    Riiiiiiiight …

    Anyone else wants to yank her tail? Raise your hands.
    I kind of hoping that this will become a running gag. Or at the very least please let us see it happen once more. ROFL

    • October 20, 2014 at 1:19 amc2710

      Can I have Cat Shinon on my lap?

    • October 20, 2014 at 1:52 amechkyr

      And then we have Silica grabbing her tail feeling pity that Kirito didn’t grab hers. XD

      http://randomc.net/image/Sword%20Art%20Online/Sword%20Art%20Online%20II%20-%2015%20-%20Large%2020.jpg

      • October 20, 2014 at 2:34 amAnnyms

        Here’s what I expected her to be thinking:

        Silica: 私の尻尾は足りないのかな… (Watashi no shippo wa tarinai no kana…)
        どうしてキリト先輩に気づかられないの?(Doushite Kirito-senpai ni kidzukararenai no?)

        Translation – I wonder if my tail isn’t good enough…
        Why doesn’t Kirito-senpai notice me?

        Senpai please…
        It’s ok Silica. There are plenty of girls like you that go unnoticed by their senpai. You are not alone.

      • October 20, 2014 at 11:40 amCodexVII

        I didn’t even notice that! Good catch

  • October 20, 2014 at 1:17 amc2710

    I truly am an M for continuing with this. Compared to premire of GGO, this felt lack luster.

    I’m surprised they’re going back to ALO. Or is this called Jotunheim Online?

    Regardless of my loathing, I’ll continue to watch this for Sugu and Shinon

    • October 20, 2014 at 5:45 amMegattrronnn

      Totally, Sugu and Shino had 2 arcs built around them, thus made them the 2 most interesting female characters. If I had to choose though, it would be Shino, cause girls who are independant and knowledgeable on guns are just hot, and of course, Sawashiro Miyuki :P

    • October 21, 2014 at 4:42 amLyfe

      That would be because this arc should have been set up during the Alfheim arc but the material for it was cut from Season 1. Enjoy this mini arc at face value, its decent :)

  • October 20, 2014 at 1:27 amCybersteel

    Is it just me or are most of them DPS’?

    • October 20, 2014 at 2:12 amHanabira.Kage

      Well…the only tank in their group is busy so…

    • October 20, 2014 at 7:01 amYanDaMan

      lol, Klein even pointed that out this episode. “Our group is still full of muscle heads”

      • October 20, 2014 at 9:52 pmSK

        I’m pretty sure he was pointing out that they were heavy on physical damage and light on magic. The majority of them are former SAO players, so they spec’d towards weapon builds, since none of them are used to having magic as an option. I believe Leafa and Asuna are the only ones who have any kind of focus in magic, and even that is mostly healing/support, not magic DPS.

  • October 20, 2014 at 1:53 amechkyr

    I nearly forget that Asuna’s actually a rich girl, to have such a huge bathroom. Kirito you damn lucky bastard. lol

    http://randomc.net/image/Sword%20Art%20Online/Sword%20Art%20Online%20II%20-%2015%20-%20Large%2006.jpg

    • October 20, 2014 at 5:08 amZnail

      I think there is something else then the bathroom in that picture that makes Kirito a lucky man :P

      • October 20, 2014 at 7:09 amechkyr

        Well, yeah, that as well. :)

      • October 20, 2014 at 11:46 amEmD

        Yeah, seriously. Asuna must have some really good shampoo to have her hair be that glorious, Kirito has a wealth of grooming knowledge right there for his atrocious hair. Lucky bastard.

      • October 20, 2014 at 10:56 pmRickyMack

        yeah that freggin tub! BUBBLE JETS!!!!!!!

  • October 20, 2014 at 2:44 amAnnyms

    In general the show is better when we have some conflict or goal in the game world rather than in the real world. I have high hopes for this arc since I don’t think we’ll get any random incest angst or rapey villains. I haven’t read the LNs so if I’m wrong I’d rather not know lol.

    P.S. @Takaii I stayed up and watched the finals too. I was telling a friend that the last game would be a quick one for SSW. As sad as I was that it didn’t go to 5 games, I feel like SSW was clearly the better team, and my body appreciated getting to sleep more than seeing a 5th game.

    • October 20, 2014 at 2:49 amTakaii

      Amen to that man. It was a terrible day at work for me haha.

  • October 20, 2014 at 3:16 amewok40k

    actually a fun episode after all the grimdark death-involving chaptes
    -gratuitous bath scene
    -pulling the tail of Sinon
    -speaking of Sinon she plays 2 weeks and wants epic bow already
    -and wants to double usual range for the bows
    -I think the scary thing is she probably can pull it off…
    -all getting scared of the dive flight of that… thing, apart from Leafa who was laughing with joy

  • October 20, 2014 at 5:16 amAnza

    Loved this episode but I was kinda surprised at the opening being all about Calibur since… Show Spoiler ▼

    I wonder if we’ll get an updated animation sequence once that starts…

  • October 20, 2014 at 6:24 amTerrorhunt

    http://randomc.net/image/Sword%20Art%20Online/Sword%20Art%20Online%20II%20-%2015%20-%20Large%2012.jpg
    Correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe this is the first time we’ve ssen an Archer in SAO? Being an archer myself (Not at a pro level, mind you. Still new at this.), I find this to be a nice change since it’s always swords and blades and what-not. Can’t believe it took them NOW to do this. Now I’m curious on how they’ll handle the gaming mechanics (or whatever the proper term is) for the archery in ALO. Is it similar to the firearms in GGO?

    • October 20, 2014 at 6:42 amHao

      I believe its mixed of some form of aim assist like the arrow arch line up to a certain range, and once pass that its all personal skill. So its possible to hit a target far from official range.

      (Please correct me if I’m wrong, read the LN long time ago)

    • October 20, 2014 at 11:21 amNerroth

      It’s not “canon” per se, but Sinon appears in Sword art Online: Hollow Fragment, despite never being in the original SAO VRMMO. Show Spoiler ▼

      • October 20, 2014 at 10:58 pmRickyMack

        that’s cause HF is an alternate universe where the game glitched out and they need to clear floor 75+ to the end, Leafa is also there.

    • October 20, 2014 at 11:37 amBlue

      There probably was no point to an archer class before. ALO was originally a magic-centered game, and magic had better range than arrows. On top of which, there wasn’t any weapon-assist system until after the SAO veterans brought Aincrad into it, so archery was probably much more difficult to aim to boot.

  • October 20, 2014 at 6:52 amYanDaMan

    Sinon’s Ass Online.

    http://randomc.net/image/Sword%20Art%20Online/Sword%20Art%20Online%20II%20-%2015%20-%20Large%2018.jpg

    Not even changing MMO’s will save her bums from being exposed.

    • October 20, 2014 at 8:49 pmDiddo

      Amen, I say to you.

      AMEN

  • October 20, 2014 at 8:10 amstarss

    I want to see a show with all these guys as a group. I’m so sick of it being the show about “how godly Kirito is”. That element is still here, but they’re on a mission as a group this time, the other girls get to have their highlights, and the sense of bright cooperation in the OP makes for my favorite SAO OP yet.

    • October 20, 2014 at 11:26 amNerroth

      Perhaps they might consider adapting the spinoff Girls Ops manga at some point, depending on how many additional volumes of that series may be in the works.

      (Or maybe even adapt that upcoming GGO-based LN spinoff due out in Japan this December, too.)

  • October 20, 2014 at 11:26 amSolaris

    I hate to say it, but this new arc looks better than what I thought. I hope they don’t just screw it up like usual :(

  • October 20, 2014 at 12:36 pmApa

    And of course they show Sinon’s ass. Wouldn’t expect less from Sinon’s Ass Online

    • October 20, 2014 at 12:42 pmSolaris

      And now it also came equipped with an handy tail. Speak about levelling up cuteness!!

  • October 20, 2014 at 2:20 pmTrap Masters

    I feel this is going to be the 2nd best arc followed by the SAO arc. SAO arc was definitely the best arc but I think the fact they tried to make the other games way to serious when it wasn’t as serious as it should be, I felt it had less of an impact as it should and now that they are finally doing something more realistic I felt it turned out for the better.

  • October 20, 2014 at 4:41 pmRed HeartGold ZX

    Judging by how the OP’s title is ‘Courage’, I’m guessing in the next arc, which is Show Spoiler ▼

    , they will still use this OP song but only with different animation sequences. Same goes to the ED.

    Also, love the new OP & ED. Brings back nostalgia and the feels with all those Aincrad scenes mixing in.

    • October 20, 2014 at 4:50 pmRed HeartGold ZX

      By which i mean ‘Courage’ w/c in Japanese is ‘Yuuki’.. Thus the other main girl in Rosario arc.

    • October 20, 2014 at 7:02 pmporn

      That girl is HIV aladeen.

  • October 20, 2014 at 7:46 pmsato

    I skipped the recap episode, but did I miss something? When did Sinon convert her character? I think that would have been a more interesting detail than the tail pulling, just saying..

  • October 20, 2014 at 8:07 pmRick Anime

    New arc looks a little interesting. I’m not a huge fan of ALO’s setting but I have the feeling we might get a really strong story. I’ll be extra stoked if this entire arc takes place entirely within the game for once. That’s what I really loved about Season 1 and this show has drifted far away from that for the past 2 seasons

    • October 21, 2014 at 4:46 amLyfe

      This arc is only 1 chapter worth of material, there won’t be a strong story but it’ll be a fun one.

  • October 21, 2014 at 4:49 amLyfe

    For those that like GGO and want to see it again.

    Show Spoiler ▼

  • October 23, 2014 at 2:43 pmMagus

    Why is Egil even included in the series? “He’s got to tend to the shop.” Why even waste time placing emphasis on his character? I was hoping to see a badass axe wielder…
    Anyone who’s read the source material: Does he ever get an actual role again in the series?

    • October 24, 2014 at 11:27 amRick Anime

      I’ve been wondering the same

    • October 24, 2014 at 12:50 pmLyfe

      He’s pretty redundant as a character now.

    • October 25, 2014 at 8:56 pmKioku from Laptop

      His last appearance that I remember was in Show Spoiler ▼

      He was doing the norm, being a barkeep and carrying on about Boston baked beans, and serving coffee to minors.
      Haven’t read 15 yet though. He may show up in it?