2022 is an important year for the Sword Art Online franchise. Find out what’s on the way! Pic credit @sao_anime/Twitter

It’s been ten years since the release of the Sword Art Online anime (which premiered on July 8, 2012), and the SAO team has a special 10th anniversary event commemorate. The announcements list includes live events, an art exhibit, a mobile game, and information about the Sword Art Online: Progressive movies.

2022 is the same year the original Sword Art Online story took place, making this a special year for SAO news? Are we getting a VRMMORPG like one of the many games in the SAO world? Are there any more stories in the universe to be discovered? We will continue to learn as the year goes on.

For those new to the Sword Art Online series, the anime can be found in its entirety at crunchy rolls and the first season is available on Netflix. Since the series has been going on since 2012, it can be daunting for some to dive into the anime, especially with so many spin-off stories and the new Sword Art Online: Progressive movies. Fortunately, the watch order for the series is simple.

2022年7月8日発売『劇場版 ソードアート・オンライン -プログレッシブ- 星なき夜のアリア』Blu-ray&DVD発売告知CM

The first season of Sword Art Online 2012 is the best place for new fans to catch up on the anime. From there, viewers can choose how they want to proceed: move on to Sword Art Online II or check out writer Reki Kawahara’s new series that offers additional storylines for the first arc.

The Sword Art Online the Movie: Progressive – Aria of a Starless Night film further fleshes out the first two episodes of the anime – namely Kirito’s attempt to clear the first floor of the SAO VRMMORPG. And there’s a new movie coming out this fall, Sword Art Online: Progressive – Scherzo of Deep Night, which is a direct sequel.

What is Sword Art Online -Full Dive-?

on Nov 6, 2022 – the same date the Sword Art Online VRMMORPG came out in the story universe – the cast of the SAO anime will host an exclusive event on Tokyo Garden Theatre. So far, most of the main protagonists, including Yoshitsugu Matsuoka (Kirito), Haruka Tomatsu (Asuna), and Miyuki Sawashiro (Sinon), have been confirmed!

Tickets are currently not directly for sale. Those who want priority in the lottery must: buy a Blu-ray or DVD copy of the movie Sword Art Online the Movie: Progressive – Aria of a Starless Night. The sale starts on Friday, July 8.

Fans can choose between limited edition and regular versions from either the Blu-ray or DVD – the limited edition version including bonus voice and video features along with a special booklet. Images of the bundle will be available closer to the release date.

Please note that the purchase of the film confers a priority sale request and does not guarantee an event ticket. As the release gets closer, we’ll be able to release more details along with other ways to get tickets to the Full Dive event.

Vote for your favorite Sword Art Online episode to win!

The Sword Art Online 10-year anniversary website is holding a special voting event† Once a day, fans can select their favorite episodes from the first two seasons, the extra edition special and Alicization. Do you have a particular scene that stands out to you? Go to the site and let your voice be heard.

Voting is now possible until April 30† Select your favorite scene from the thumbnail and share your choice on Twitter (not required) to fight over it online! In July, the clips with the most votes will be broadcast during the SAO Selection On Air event. More details about the event are not yet known. Stay tuned!

What is the new 2022 Sword Art Online game?

Those who want to enjoy the world of Sword Art Online as a hands-on experience have a new mobile game to try out. Sword Art Online Variant Showdown is currently in the pre-registration phase, but is slated for this year. Currently, the registration page only provides a link to the game’s Facebook page and a list of rewards.

All that has been confirmed so far is that the game will be set in the Cross Edge world. The listed pre-registration rewards help to give a hint about the gameplay itself. Starting with the reward for 100,000 pre-registrations, the game has been confirmed to have a stamina and EXP system. This could be a concern for some players, because if the game is anything like My Hero Academia: The Strongest Hero, it means that the game time will be closed behind a paywall.

However, it is too early to come to a conclusion. At 200,000 pre-registrations, players will receive ‘[Will to Fight] Asuna’. What seems most likely is that the game will be party-based. Fans can collect their favorite SAO characters and use them in battle. It’s not said whether the game will feature gacha mechanics, but given how popular the game model is, it’s not unlikely.

What might be even more interesting is the reward of 300,000 Coloring Brush. A mechanic to change characters’ clothing color would go a long way in helping players customize their rosters. End-game metas for gacha games often limit player choice and variety, but cosmetic tweaks would help alleviate some of the monotony of seeing the same S-tier characters.

The 400,000 pre-registration reward gives 20 Evolution Crystals seemingly for the previous Asuna unit. This further confirms the belief that the game will revolve around collecting and upgrading units. And the reward of 500,000 Premium Ticket x5 makes the gacha guess all the more likely.

Screenshot from the Sword Art Online: Pre-Registration Rewards for Variant Showdown.
Check back to the registration page for upcoming details! Photo credit: Bandai Namco

Information may be limited now, but SOA: Variant Showdown’s first lifestream – scheduled for April 2 – should help confirm what type of game the new release will be. It’s a shame that this mobile game won’t be the VRMMORPG many hoped for.

In the SAO universe, the first game to enter Kirigaya Kazuto – Kirito – will have its first beta in the summer of 2022. Is it wishful thinking that developers have worked tirelessly to create a massive online game that coincides with its release date in the universe? Naturally! But that doesn’t stop fans from being hopeful.

Where will the Art of Sword Art Online event be held?

Sword Art Online’s vibrant and inviting visuals have fueled much of the series. And to celebrate, the SAO-P team is holding an exclusive art exhibition to showcase some of the production materials and artwork used in the making of the SAO anime. The pieces themselves have yet to be announced, but it’s likely the gallery will feature original character designs, early sketches, and perhaps a look at some of the scenes that never made it into the final release.

The exhibition itself is held in the Ueno Royal Museum in Tokyo† From July 2 to 24, fans can visit the exhibition and enjoy their favorite characters and scenes. Information about tickets will become available in the coming months.

How can I get an advanced ticket for the new Sword Art Online: Progressive movie?

The upcoming movie Sword Art Online: Progressive – Scherzo of Deep Night has a release date set for October 2022. Author Reki Kawahara created a reboot of the SAO series in the form of Sword Art Online: Progressive. Longtime fans and newcomers alike can enjoy the movies as they customize the Aincrad arc (the first arc of SAO) by focusing on individual floors in the Sword Art Online VRMMORPG.

ソードアート・オンライン -プログレッシブ- 冥き夕闇のスケルツォ」2022年秋公開!

Specific to Japanese theaters, fans can buy MoviTicke Cards† These are digital tickets that can be purchased in advance – registered members can even get discounts by using points earned from purchases. The tickets will go on sale on April 29 for 1,500 yen. Early purchases also come with an A4 image of the film’s cover, while supplies last.


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