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SilverStormm

Sword Art Online

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Season two starts to tomorrow 3/28. I am pretty much unspoilered, to the point where I don't know if Kirito is in this season or not. A GIF from Toonami's tumblr didn't really clue me in, so I'm looking forward to finding out.

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He appeared in the Toonami promos, so it was a pretty safe bet that he'd be there.

 

People are dying because some high-tech troll has figured out an ultimate griefing technique, this time in a firearms-intensive MMO. One of the authorities pegs Kirito as an expert on this sort of thing, and recruits him to scout out the virtual terrain & make contact with said troll. Also, Kirito and Asuna are still an item.

 

"Death Gun" sounds like something an eight year old would come up with. It's no better the Japanese version (I looked it up): "Desu Gan." Sounds like the weapon that Suiseiseki from Rozen Maiden would use.

 

I wonder if Death Gun's ability to kill other players comes from the gun, or from the metal skull mask that he's wearing.

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Agreed about "Death Gun" . . . it sounds ridiculous. Like a mid-90s Image Comics antihero. We didn't get much of Kirito being "l33t," but I'm sure his MMORPG skills are still sharp. The big question is whether he's going to bring Asuna with him. After the events of the second season of SAO, I wouldn't blame her for swearing off gaming forever.

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I figured the cafe guy was Kirito's quasi-samurai redhead friend from last season for a while.

Death Gun must be a cooler name in Japan?

Based on the end title, Kirito is about to literally bring a knife (ok, lightsaber?) to a gun fight. As is typical for this show, he's going to be awesome at it.

I'm guessing he won't tell Asuna but she will find out anyway. Cue angst.

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I figured the cafe guy was Kirito's quasi-samurai redhead friend from last season for a while.

I don't think so. I think he is a new character.

 

 

Death Gun must be a cooler name in Japan?

That's what I thought too, that it must lose something in translation. Apparently it's not much better in Japanese.

 

 

Based on the end title, Kirito is about to literally bring a knife (ok, lightsaber?) to a gun fight.

It would be somewhat refreshing if that bites him in the ass, but I'm not hopeful.

 

 

I'm guessing he won't tell Asuna but she will find out anyway. Cue angst.

Definitely.

 

So even though I swore I wouldn't bother with season 2, here I am giving it a shot. I have very low expectations. 

Also, apparently, Toonami cut out the last 30 seconds of the episode, which introduced this arc's girl.

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I hope they explain the economics of GGO. I'm wondering about the particulars of how the virtual winnings are able to be converted into real world currency. Does it come from ad revenue? Is it an elaborate money laundering scheme? I've heard of people converting real world money into game money/items but this sounds like the GGO Powers That Be send the payouts directly.

 

It appears as if someone has found a way to use the dive inputs to trigger adverse biological responses. Screwing with the autonomic nervous system to produce cardiac arrest.

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I would imagine that the economy of the game would be something like that of Second Life. Real world money could be converted to game money and back again at a set exchange rate, maybe with a conversion fee charged by the game company. You could then spend the money on stuff, training, entertainment, or anything you might buy or hire in real life. You could either obtain these things from the game company stores/NPCs, or from other players who sell loot, services, & crafted goods. They could also allow people and businesses to buy in-game advertising or set up virtual goods/services outlets in the game.

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This week: the New Girl shows up in GGO. I know she's going to be special, because she's in the opening credits. I don't think she's Kirito's sister from the second season of SAO, though I did see glasses on the bureau after she logged out of GGO. New Girl is a deadly sniper in the game, and she winds up killing a guy with a fast-action minigun, even after getting part of her leg blown off. Why wasn't she "killed" outright from the bullet, I don't know yet.

 

Meanwhile, in the elf game from the second season, Kirito and Asuna (along with their "child") are lovey-dovey with each other. I'm impressed and slightly horrified that Asuna is in a video game, given how the previous Big Bad badtouched (or maybe just badtalked) her frequently. Kirito sees an object in the sky, gets a flashback from last week, and decides to tell Asuna about Deathgun.

 

Speaking of Deathgun . . . . in the credits, he's credited as "??????" Nice touch.

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Well that was a pretty good episode. The show has always done a good job with action sequences.

 

 

I don't think she's Kirito's sister from the second season of SAO,

I don't think so either. I think she's a new character.

 

 

Why wasn't she "killed" outright from the bullet, I don't know yet.

It seemed like only head shots were instant kill. Dyne was hit a few times before he died.

 

I'm impressed and slightly horrified that Asuna is in a video game, given how the previous Big Bad badtouched (or maybe just badtalked) her frequently.

Going into the game may be the only way for her to interact with their "daughter", so that might be enough of a push. I'm actually impressed so many of the other SAO players still play.

 

 

Kirito sees an object in the sky, gets a flashback from last week, and decides to tell Asuna about Deathgun.

I'm pretty sure that was Castle Aincrad, the setting of SAO, and I'm shocked Kirito seemed like he was going to tell Asuna. I was sure they would drag it out for awhile. Of course they could always go the "she tells him not to, he does anyway and hides it , she finds out" route.

 

 

Speaking of Deathgun . . . . in the credits, he's credited as "??????" Nice touch.

Yeah, I'm assuming that means he is a season 1 character, probably somebody from SAO, and they don't want people to figure out who by looking up the voice actor. 

Edited by ZoqFotPik

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I like the fact that the New Girl's new sniper rifle is a Hecate II model. Snipers are usually thought of as being loners, and Hecate was generally shunned by the Mount Olympus crowd. She's also involved with ghosts necromancy, and magic, which seems appropriate to an online virtual reality game.

Yes, I've been a fan of Greek mythology for a long time. Why do you ask?

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I was wondering if that was the reference, Sandman87.

It was a great action sequence, although being able to aim that gigantic rifle while falling, without one leg for leverage, made me question the physics engine of this game a bit :) .

I kind of hate the intro since it paints the picture that S2 is just Kirito and Sonine (short for SniperQueen!). But I can understand the need to branch out, I guess.

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Interesting that in real life, it's primarily used for shooting stuff, not people. And is typically fired from a prone position due to the recoil, so a 100-pound simulated girl firing it from in midair is even more questionable....

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And is typically fired from a prone position due to the recoil,...

I suspect that the fact that it weighs 30 pounds (not including the scope) has something to do with it too.

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True.

That reminds me - did it bother anybody else that at one point she made a big deal out of flipping the scope dust caps closed, but the rest of the time she ran around through the swirling dust and gunfire with them open?

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Raise the rifle to take aim, then realize that you can't see because the caps are closed, fumble with the caps, aim again...plenty of time for the other guy to make lots of holes in you.

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Does anyone know how many episodes are in this arc? We are already 3 episodes in and the main character hasn't even started playing the game yet. Seems like there are going to be pacing issues if they split the season into two arcs like last season.

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This one is feeling a lot more character driven somehow, which is refreshing. I'm intrigued by Sinon's back story. Although, it sounds like the RL girl's name is very similar to Asuna, which is going to be obnoxious.

I want to read up on the character / weapon classes; it seems like (going back to ep 1) mid-building your avatar or its stats is a big problem.

Edited by lathspel

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Did anybody else look at the credits and mistake Kirito for Asuna because of the long hair? I'm not sure we needed the ambiguity, but dang, SAO added a new level of weirdness. Anyway, he meets Sinon, and they spend quality "girl time" with each other. Kirito beats a game using his l33t skillz, gets himself a photon sword (because the writers can't just say "light saber"), and shows his incompetence with a gun, which probably makes his photon sword his go-to weapon for the duration of the series.

 

ETA: Another "dang" goes to Sinon's backstory. I get the gun phobia, but would you really want to mess with a girl who killed somebody during her first time with a gun? Stupid teenagers . .. .

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I wonder when and if Kirito is going to fess up to being male and/or the guy who saved everyone in SAO.

Was anyone surprised at all when Kirito beat the reverse shooting gallery game?

Interesting that Kirito shoots left handed, but aims with his right eye. Not the usual way of doing things.

Looks like most of the bullet-shooting guns in the show are going to be based on real life weapons. I got a particularly big kick out of the giant floating ad billboard for the FN P90, which was the standard gun for the good guys in Stargate SG-1.

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So is Kirito shooting left handed since he will have the lightsaber in his right? I don't remember him being left handed last season. (To be honest, I figured he'd dual wield a melee weapon, but I remember that was a rare skill in whatever the first game was (before ALO).)

Yep, that "I'm really a guy" conversation will be awkward. Sinon was actually a lot less reserved than I expected she'd be - maybe because Kirito was pretending not to be a guy.

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So is Kirito shooting left handed since he will have the lightsaber in his right?

That's what I was thinking. He held his lightsaber in his right, and I did a quick image search and they all show him holding his sword, or in the case of dual wielding his main sword, in his right.

 

 

I remember that was a rare skill in whatever the first game was

The first game was actually called Sword Art Online.

 

 

I wonder when and if Kirito is going to fess up to being male and/or the guy who saved everyone in SAO.

I"m guessing he'll be outed as male fairly soon, probably when they register for the competition. I get why he would ordinarily hide his true identity, but Death Gun seems to only targets top players. So, in this case, revealing his identity as the savior of SAO, might put him on Death Gun's radar more quickly. Especially considering Death Gun might also be an SAO survivor.

 

So Kirito is finally in GGO, but still little movement on the Death Gun plot. I really think there is going to be pacing issues unless this is full season arc, and even then could run into problems with filler episodes.

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Well, things definitely took a turn. Deathgun reveals himself to Kirito, and our hero figures him to be an SAO survivor . . . though the final set of flashbacks confused me, since it's been a while since I saw the SAO arc. Also, Kirito outs himself to Sinon after she strips to her underwear, much to her disgust. You think it might have been necessary for Kirito to mention the virtual wife and kid?

 

Question: how does the show get away with "photon swords"? Legally, I mean . . .  they even make the whooshing sound like light sabers.

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The flashbacks involving the wrist tattoo were of the Laughing Coffins, a guild that specialized in killing other players to take their stuff. Remember that meant that they were killing them in real life, and they knew it. That Jedi sword crap didn't impress me when I was 10 years old, and it doesn't impress me now.

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I guess we should've expected it was someone who didn't mind killing people in real life.

Kirito's sword skills may become more of a liability now, since the matches are public knowledge. And, a glowing sword may be a bit of a problem in night environments.

I suspect Kirito's failure to sign up for "top prizes" may come back to bite him. (Also, if the game is in a grey area legally, it seems strange that it requires your real life contact info, instead of, say, the bitcoin alternative of a Swiss bank account.)

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Question: how does the show get away with "photon swords"? Legally, I mean . . .  they even make the whooshing sound like light sabers.

I'm guessing as long as they don't call them "light sabers", it probably counts as derivative or parody and falls under fair use.

 

 

I suspect Kirito's failure to sign up for "top prizes" may come back to bite him. 

I think that was a hint that Kirito is right about the "Death Gun" being a hoax. The only two people killed so far were top "Bullet of Bullets" players. If they signed up and used their real address then that information could be used to track them down IRL. I figured Death Gun was another SAO survivor.

Edited by ZoqFotPik

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Tonight's episode is brought to you by the letters "P," "T," "S" and "D" . . . Kirito's guilt for killing three guys in SAO, and Sinon's IRL fatality. They face each other in the BOB prelims, and Kirito goes God Mode yet again to win (or at least force a surrender). I'm not tired of seeing him do that, but I can see how that can be  pain for other viewers.

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An episode showing the lead up, the execution, and the aftermath of the crusade against Laughing Coffin would have been a lot more interesting than some of the season 1 episodes.

Edited by ZoqFotPik

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Kirito says "if he knows me, I must know him", which is somewhat faulty logic. Kirito was sort of famous in SAO; probably plenty of people knew who he was. At least after he had saved them all (unless that wasn't public knowledge?).

Edit: just noticed from the flashback that Kirito's SAO armor has a three-point connector on his chest, which is echoed by the three bolts on his GGO chest protector. Nice touch on the character design.

Edited by lathspel

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Kirito says "if he knows me, I must know him", which is somewhat faulty logic. Kirito was sort of famous in SAO; probably plenty of people knew who he was. At least after he had saved them all (unless that wasn't public knowledge?).

It's never really been clear how much information regarding what happened in SAO is known to the general public. I used to think he should be more famous, but according to people on other boards, in the light novels the Government kept it mostly quiet and, for the most part, all anyone knows is that a lot of people were trapped in a game and many died. It was also brought up that since the game ended immediately after Kirito beat Kayaba, only the 20 or so people who survived the level 75 boss would know what happened. He would probably be better known as the guy who can dual wield.

Edited by ZoqFotPik

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Thanks for clearing it up. It does seem that Kirito hasn't told many people about his role, at least.

He's dual wielding in GGO, if you think about it, although with a different connotation. The mental gymnastics are impressive: ward off your opponent's shots with the light sword, fire at your opponents (although he seems to mostly use this as covering fire rather than actually trying to connect), and not hit your own bullets with the sword!

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Speaking of which, I wonder if his dual-wielding ability got translated with his other skills into GGO. I bet it did, and anyone who sees him do it is going to freak out.

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He was shown dual wielding, shooting his pistol with his left and holding his sword with his right, in this latest episode. No one seemed to be shocked. Since most people seem to carry rifles and need to worry about reloading, dual wielding in GGO while possible is probably uncommon.

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No, I meant dual wielding swords. Besides, he wasn't dual wielding so much as holding one ready while he used the other.

Edited by Sandman87

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Even if he was just holding it, the fact that he can have two weapons equipped at the same time proves dual wielding is possible. If he can do that, then there is no reason why he couldn't fight with two photonswords.

Edit: Just rewatched the episode. He is deflecting bullets with his sword while shooting his pistol, so he can definitely dual wield.

Edited by ZoqFotPik

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I think his skill is a counterpoint to the discussion in the first episode regarding how players were of the opinion that choosing to go for high agility scores when initially designing your GGO character was something of a dead end.

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That's a great point.

It's possible that Kirito's ported character may have higher stats than anyone can naturally get in GGO - after all, he came from a game where you could argue that dexterity might be of higher value. That's compared to an ability like good aim, where maybe his SAO character could never rise as high.

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That's a great point.

Agreed.

 

It's possible that Kirito's ported character may have higher stats than anyone can naturally get in GGO - after all, he came from a game where you could argue that dexterity might be of higher value.

I don't know about this though. Maybe his stat configuration is abnormal due to the transfer and the difference in game types, but I doubt he has higher that possible stats. It would be too easy to game the system. With the Seed available to anyone, some entrepreneur could create a 'game' that just gives you a million points in what ever attribute you want for a price.  

 

As for this week's episode, not much happened except Sinon's friend went from zero to creepy rather quickly.

 

Edit: To paraphrase the great Ralph Wiggum, "The Balloon symbolizes obviousness." Also, I always thought Klein was a more interesting character than Kirito.

Edited by ZoqFotPik

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I just saw more PTSD for the second week in a row. I'd rather go straight to the BOB tourney, but I can understand why we'd need more trauma from Kirito and Sinon.

 

Speaking of Sinon . . . how did she get into the final stage?

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Speaking of Sinon . . . how did she get into the final stage?

I've been wondering that since last week too, all I can come up with is that either it's a double elimination tourney and she won the losers bracket, or there are some wild card spots based on some sort of preliminary round scoring. I doubt we will get any kind of answer. It seems like the writers wanted the two of them to meet in the prelims and didn't realize that only one would go on to the finals until later.

Edit: "Bullet of Bullets" could also be a round robin style tournament. Probably the easiest way to explain how Sinon could advance despite losing to Kirito.

Edited by ZoqFotPik

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Did Kirito win the final qualifier? Maybe there was another prelim that Sinon won, which we didn't see.

Edited by lathspel

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I loved the guy who was trashing Dyne was shown wearing a "Dyne No. 1" sash later in the episode. Also the guy with the Avatar arrow tattoo. According to Google translate 'sterben' means die in German. Decent episode. I would have liked to have seen more of the BoB finals, rather than have another scene of Kirito and Sinon talking. We know that they both have issues and we know that Sinon knows that Kirito has issues. It just seems like needless rehashing at this point. Nice call back to Laughing Coffin paralyzing their target before killing them.  

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That was a good cliffhanger, I wanted more! I had forgotten the stun thing.

Sinon trusts the 15 minute sweep too much. A lot can happen in that time.

Nice to see that Kirito continues his trend of bending the rules of the game. Wasn't that why everyone was mad at him in SAO originally?

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I'll probably have to rewatch the episode. I think it would be less clunky if they brought in the hosts of "Big Shots" from Cowboy Bebop to provide GGO exposition, instead of having a clearly irritated Sinon provide Kirito with the rules.

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Nice to see that Kirito continues his trend of bending the rules of the game. Wasn't that why everyone was mad at him in SAO originally?

He was accused of doing that. That's what the whole 'Beater' thing was about. I don't think it was ever made clear how much if any rule bending he actually did, or if he was just letting everyone think he was.

 

 

I think it would be less clunky if they brought in the hosts of "Big Shots" from Cowboy Bebop to provide GGO exposition, instead of having a clearly irritated Sinon provide Kirito with the rules.

Yeah, I felt that entire conversation was completely unnecessary.

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"Hey Sinon, I'm going to pretend that I'm a clueless noob, so you have an excuse to do some exposition about multi-player death-match to the viewers, just in case any of them have never touched a video game."

"Ok, sounds good to me. Let me put on my angry face so they know I'm still mad at you."

I'm probably too picky, but it makes me stabby every time I hear a suppressor referred to as a "silencer", or when it's portrayed as making weapons nearly silent, especially when it's attached to a rifle.

I'll also endorse the Big Shots idea.

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Apparently the Silent Assassin is a real gun as well, so this show is more accurate in its firearm details than its dialogue writing.

I'm predicting that DeathGun doesn't show up on the satellite map somehow.

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