What is Accel World vs Sword Art Online?
Accel World vs Sword Art Online is a hack and slash role-playing game that brings together the worlds and characters of two separate (and popular) anime series - Sword Art Online, and Accel World. With both shows revolving around virtual online multiplayer games, only set several decades apart, the game begins when people and places from sci-fi beat 'em up Accel World start cropping up in the fairy-inspired Sword Art game. When the daughter of Sword Art protagonists Kirito and Asuna gets kidnapped by the mysterious Persona Vabel, it falls to you to try to get to the bottom of the strange goings on. Along the way you'll reunite with friends from both shows, beat up bad guys and traverse winding dungeons as they try to give Persona Vabel what for and save Yui from her fate.
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How do you play Accel World vs Sword Art Online?
As a fairly story-driven title, your time in Accel World vs Sword Art Online is generally split between watching story scenes unfold and heading out into the world to battle bad guys, find lost friends and explore underground dungeons. Combat is very much of the button-mashing, hacky-slashy variety, where you have a choice between a weaker and faster sword slash, and a slower but more powerful one. Each character also has access to a range of special moves, from super-speedy sword slashes, to handy healing spells, or even the ability to summon a giant mech to blast your enemies with. Even better, you aren't locked to playing as any one character, and can instead customise your party of three with any of the characters you unlock from either Accel World, or Sword Art Online.
Story missions see you doing anything from tackling huge bosses, to infiltrating a dungeon, or simply heading to an area to confront a specific character, with a lengthy, twisting story to take in. Outside of the main story, the game also offers a range of "MMO" inspired side quests to take on, which mostly revolve around defeating a certain number of a specific type of monster, or collecting particular materials.
How easy is Accel World vs Sword Art Online to pick up and play?
In terms of accessibility, Accel World vs Sword Art Online is pretty easy to get to grips with. With three different difficulty levels (and the ability to change it at any time via the title screen), even on the normal difficulty, none of the everyday enemies you come across should pose too much of a problem, as you can largely defeat them in just a few swift sword slashes. While boss fights can be a little trickier, there's nothing here that should leave you stumped for too long.
If anything, it's the flying controls that provide most of the game's learning curve, as figuring out how to battle with airborne enemies, which buttons make you go up and down. and how to lock on to enemies can take a bit of getting used to. Accel World vs Sword Art Online will work best with a player who's a self starter, and who isn't afraid to experiment and figure things out on their own, as the game sometimes give few, or vague instructions about where to head next.
As a role playing game, it's also worth noting that Accel World vs Sword Art Online requires a strong reading ability, being voiced entirely in Japanese with English subtitles throughout.
Sample sentences include:
- "Kirito, Asuna and Yui are happily spending their family time together and exploring the virtual world of Alfheim Online."
- "To be the best, you need to learn how to enjoy the game while constantly honing your skills for maximum efficiency."
- "Where are you going? The gate's by the farm over to the east of here."
In terms of mature content, Accel World vs Sword Art Online contains little in the way of bad language and violence, and moderate sexual content.
On the bad language front, there's nothing in the way of bad language here, and no blood or guts to speak of either. While you'll engage with fantastical beasts and robotic enemies in combat using swords and spells, hits are simply accompanied by impact noises, bright flashes of light and the occasional cry of pain, before they disappear in a pixelised puff of smoke when defeated.
However, Accel World vs Sword Art Online does contain a fair amount of 'fan service' - ie. glimpses of the usually female characters in potentially compromising positions. One scene shows half a dozen or so ladies naked save for a few strategically-placed shapes that cover anything too dodgy, as they 'reveal their true forms' to each other, rather than their virtual avatars. A separate scene shows two female naked characters on top of each other, with well-placed arms/legs/hair hiding nipples and such, supposedly a result of them falling over and accidentally knocking themselves on a mace that can instantly destroy any armour it touches. The occasional innuendo or reference also crops up in dialogue, whether it's describing a female companion's chest as 'Silica-class' (a rather flat-chested member of your group) or other such playful banter, but is nothing too extreme.
Format Reviewed: Playstation 4