After a year recovering, it seems Kirito is about to be thrown into another VRMMO game.
Review (with Spoilers)
When it comes to successful series of late, that don’t seem to go way past their expiration date, like Naruto and many others, Sword Art Online is probably one of the few that didn’t seek to overstay its welcome. And while the original series did come off as a more mature version of .Hack, it found its own stride and gained quite a following. Now with season 2 it seems the show is aiming to set up the life or death feel the first arc of season 1 had, and damn if it isn’t intriguing.
Topic 1: Young Love – Kirito and Asuna
After all Kirito and Asuna went through together, it seems their bond is stronger than ever. They seem very much in love and before all the madness restarts in their lives, they speak of their future. Well, Kirito speaks of his anyway. It seems he wants to get into engineering to create the next evolution of virtual reality by increased focus on sensory connection so that the feel, smell, and touch of things in the virtual world are harder to distinguish from the real world. So, basically, he wants to create The Matrix. As for Asuna? Well, she just wants to still be in Kirito’s life and have him find a way to get to Yui. Which sounds cute and all but, considering how badass Asuna was in the first arc of season 1, it really is sad how she has been demoted to a simple love interest.
Topic 2: Your Country Needs You – Kirito and Kikuoka
Before Asuna and Kirito’s date, Kikuoku, a very odd adult who is part of the Ministry of Internal Affairs: Telecommunications Bureau – Virtual Division, seeks to gain some insight from Kirito about this new virtual world named Gun Gale Online. A place where, we are told, only elite players truly thrive for it is one of the few games in which in-game coins can be converted to real money! Leading some players to make up to 200,000 yen (almost $2000) a month or more. So, understandably, when it comes to any red flags like people possibly dying due to playing the game, this calls for the government’s attention. And who better than Kirito to consult since not only did he save so many people in Sword Art Online, but also was able to rescues Asuna’s consciousness when it was trapped within Alfheim Online.
But, based off minor coincidences, as well as some knowledge of the new Asuphere technology, Kirito writes off the idea that someone could suffer acute heart failure from playing the game. And even when Kikuoku mentions this coincidence possibly happening twice, thanks to one of the players named “Death Gun,” who seems like a character from the Dark Side of Star Wars, Kirito still doesn’t seem that interested. Especially since the idea of someone merely shooting him in a virtual world could kill him.
However, being that Kikuoku is desperate to get someone inside, and oddly only Kirito is available, he offers what I assume is 300,000 yen for Kiritio to help with his investigation. For just as much as it is interesting people are making money off of GGO, there is also the issue of the effects full dive technology, the name of the technology which allows people into virtual worlds, which is what really seems to be bothering Kikuoku’s bosses. And while, as Kirito mentions, they would be better off contacting the administrators, there is an issue that the company managing GGO, Zaskar, has its servers in America and seems to be cloaked in secrecy. So the only way to make contact is going within the game. Said information leads Kirito to have a moment of reflection in which he thinks about the 4,000 people who died in Aincrad, within Sword Art Online, and with Kikouka mentioning “Death Gun” only hunts top players, which means Kirito should be safe, he decides to help with the investigation.
Topic 3: A New Face – Shinon
The episode ends with us watching a sniper take out this group approaching her. Not much is gone into besides her name, Shinon, and even the previews for the series didn’t reveal too much about her. But there is always the possibility it could be Hirito’s sister, if not someone else he knows from one of the former games he played. Either way, we are sure to learn more of this mysterious figure as time goes on and Hirito begins building his legend once more.