For just about as long as the Sword Art Online anime series has existed, so has the steady stream of SAO video games also flowed like a river. It’s a very natural combination though. An anime show about people stuck in a VR MMO; it would be an insult if there wasn’t a library of games based off it. But up until this point, most have tried to emulate the MMO experience in more of a WoW/Action RPG hybrid. With this latest incarnation, however, Sword Art Online: Fatal Bullet, the franchise is taking a more shooter-friendly approach to the gameplay.
Since this particular SAO title takes place in the VR world of Gun Gale Online the emphasis on shooter should be quite apparent. Players will traverse the land as various characters from the series but for now, our demo only had two of them playable. Series protagonist Kirito carries a laser sword and pistol and is made for more close-range combat and has some cool abilities like a special move where he uses his blade to turn himself into a human torpedo. And Sinon, as fans would expect, is a long-range sniper character, but also has an SMG for back-up.
Many of the MMO elements still exist, so it should be familiar to fans of the previous titles. You’ll still work with the support of an AI controlled squad. And of course, there will be leveling up and upgradeable skills. Now, however it would appear that many of the skills will revolve around the characters’ weaponry specifically as opposed to the character themselves.
So you’ll be able to do things like adding an explosive or elemental effect to your next shot. You’ll also have an aiming assistant available that you can switch on and off depending on how much of a hard time you’re having blowing up robots and nasty creatures. And lastly, you’ll have your trusty Ultimate Fiber Gun (UFG) to use as a grappling hook to either traverse terrain or find a nice sniping spot.
Up until now, we’ve only seen SAO titles on Sony consoles, so I’m sure folks will be glad to know that this is also the first time fans will be able to play a title from the series on an XB1 console or PC. Right now there isn’t too much else to report about Sword Art Online: Fatal Bullet. But it’s also just newly announced so there’s bound to be more details on the way. We’ll be sure to keep you up to date.