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Given the success of Sword Art Online, it should probably come as no surprise that a third title set within the “help I'm trapped inside a game” series is headed to PlayStation 4 and Vita in Japan sometime next year. Assuming the second game in the series does well here Stateside, we might even be in for a U.S. release.
Sword Art Online is one of those handful of yearly anime that become culturally relevant here in the U.S. There are literally dozens of anime released in Japan annually and here locally through streaming services like Crunchyroll and Funimation. Even Hulu and Netflix have upped their anime game as the medium continues to grow in popularity. Still, only a couple of shows a year become the “it” title, and Sword Art Online was just such a show in 2013.
The success of the show led to the launch of a couple of games that made their way to the States, including Sword Art Online: Hollow Fragment and the soon-to-be-released Sword Art Online: Lost Song, which hits retailers Nov. 17. The first game was hugely flawed but still enjoyable, and all signs point to Lost Song being a big step in the right direction for series fans and folks who just enjoy a good RPG.
As for the new game, it's called Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization, and it's due out for the PS4 and Vita in Japan next year. If Lost Song does well here in the U.S., I wouldn't be surprised to see a port at some point further down the line.
Hollow Realization was first shown off at the Dengeki Bunko Fall Festival, according to Siliconera, with Bandai Namco giving fans their first glimpse at the upcoming game.
It appears as though Aincrad is being revived in this latest game, which could be bad news for everyone involved. Once a simple VR MMORPG, that game world is where thousands of people became stuck within a game where, if they died, they died in real life, too. Yeah, it's a well-known trope at this point, but Sword Art did a good job with it.
That mysterious girl will obviously have some sort of major role in the plot but, otherwise, details are scarce at the moment. There are a few decent glimpses of the gameplay, which look like it will keep the action fast and free-flowing. Having only played Hollow Fragment on the Vita, Hollow Realization looks awful pretty running on the PS4, too. Here's hoping that both this and that upcoming Attack on Titan series do their respective anime proud.