Sword Art Online Ep. 16: Land of the Fairies

Wednesday, October 24th, 2012

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*Spoilers Ahead*

Episode 16 of Sword Art Online introduces us to the new world of ALfheim Online. While it’s a different game from SAO, the functionality and base code for the game is nearly identical. It is now Kirito’s mission to find Asuna inside ALfheim Online, and that’s if it even really is her. It’s time to drink some Red Bull and grow some wings, Kirito.

Remember how at the end of the last episode Kirito received a message from Egil? Well this time he decides to meet up with his old pal in person at Egil’s restaurant/bar. Egil can’t provide proof that it’s Asuna, and they both agree there’s an extremely strong resemblance between what Asuna actually looks like and the photograph. Kirito naturally decides to dive into ALfheim Online as he’s Asuna’s knight after all.

“Asuna? My enemy!” (She’s thinking that for sure.)

We find Sugu touching herself while thinking about Kirito from the night before- wait, did I just say that? Okay, so maybe she was just keeping her hands warm… But anywho she’s not very intrigued by the fact that Kirito will be doing whatever it takes to rescue Asuna. If you were in Sugu’s shoes I’m sure you’d be feeling the same way. Of course Sugu makes it all the more obvious by her facial expressions and the tone in her voice, and I’m sure Kirito is oblivious to it all to begin with.

Luckily for Kirito all he needs is his Nerve Gear to log into ALfheim Online. He does indeed hesitate before logging in, but come on, who wouldn’t? Actually I’m sure there are many who would never dare to log back in to a game ever again after going through the hell of Sword Art Online for two years. I don’t think I would be able to handle logging into any game with a nerve gear requirement for the rest of my life. Well, unless my romantic partner was still trapped within the game and it’s my unspoken responsibility to rescue her.

When Kirito logs into ALfheim Online he is randomly dropped from the sky into a random forest location. It seems he was supposed to be dropped into a town or something of that sort, but a glitch happens where he lands fairly far away. I think this may not be a glitch and that someone else is manipulating the game. Maybe it’s that bastard Sugou from the previous episode?

Regardless, Kirito is able to keep his previous leveling power and skills. It turns out that everything transfers over from Sword Art Online and translates to skill strength in ALfheim Online. Even the small pendant that signifies Yui is able to be accessed, so guess what…

Yui is back and now she’s a pixie!

I guess that’s cute. See, Kirito’s mad hacking skills really did pay off in that episode from a while back. Yui’s main purpose is yet to be truly realized, but for now she’s going to be Kirito’s companion for what will likely be the rest of the series. I just hope she doesn’t yell “HEY!” when you least expect it. Also, Yui seems to know a lot about ALfheim Online so she’s a great help in teaching Kirito how to fly. I can’t wait to see some badass fights in midair.

The episode ends with the introduction of two new characters named Leafa and Recon. It’s obvious that Leafa is recognized as the more dominant character because she fights to help protect Recon. In ALfheim Online it’s okay to be a player killer, so while she’s killing some guys dressed in red Recon is also killed. At least they’re not dying in real life this time. I would imagine they are being sent back to their towns or something of that nature.

Leafa on the left, Recon on the right.

Just before Leafa is about to be killed Kirito comes and saves the day. As mentioned earlier, his skill power transferred over from Sword Art Online and these thugs are just a breeze. I wonder if he will be this overpowered for the remainder of the series? I’m guessing not, since that would make for a pretty boring show.

I have to admit that I’m not as impressed with this episode as much as I would like to be. I understand where the story is going but I kind of wish we were still inside of SAO. I don’t mean that for the character’s sake, but just for the familiarity of our setting and having an understanding of what is going on in the game’s world. I wish there was more to see from Sword Art Online’s world and that the concept could have been pushed a bit further. Maybe I am commenting on the story’s structure but I guess I shouldn’t complain. This is Kirito’s story so we will continue to follow him wherever he may go. And for right now, his main goal is likely to find Asuna and save her. I can’t disagree with that.

Sword Art Online has a new episode streaming every week on Crunchyroll.

About Jared Cyhowski

[Former Staff] Jared is a recent graduate from Fitchburg State University where he studied communications, video production, and English. He enjoys playing video games, watching anime, writing, and of course pizza. His favorite games are Shadow of the Colossus and Final Fantasy IX, but he can’t possibly choose a favorite anime. Jared enjoys following the games industry and observing what will happen next, and he puts out an invitation for discussion on these topics. He loves a great story in these mediums and prefers a stronger narrative design over most features. Jared is personally responsible for creating and managing the Anime section of the website, and hopes to inspired and entertain with everything he writes.