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View Poll Results: Critique of Episode 14
10 out of 10: Near Perfect... 102 45.95%
9 out of 10 : Excellent... 57 25.68%
8 out of 10 : Very Good... 19 8.56%
7 out of 10 : Good... 16 7.21%
6 out of 10 : Average... 10 4.50%
5 out of 10 : Below Average... 1 0.45%
4 out of 10 : Poor... 5 2.25%
3 out of 10 : Bad... 3 1.35%
2 out of 10 : Very Bad... 1 0.45%
1 out of 10 : Tortuous... 8 3.60%
Voters: 222. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 2012-10-06, 20:26   Link #181
don_Durandal
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PonSquared View Post
Okay, so... now what?

They are out of the game..... maybe??

What could happen next after the reunion?... if there is one??


My Question is: Is there a lot more story to go (ie: story arcs) or are we basically at the end of the story?
A Winston Churchill quote might be appropriate here:
"Now this is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning."
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Old 2012-10-06, 20:37   Link #182
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On a side note, can we find Kirito guilty of abandonment? He just left Yui (in his nerv gear) sitting on the bed as he wandered off. Anyone could just grab his child and escape while he's taking a walk in the hospital .
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Old 2012-10-06, 20:40   Link #183
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So they had sex without knowing each other's name or age?

Lol

And Kirito looks kinda creepy at the end.
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Old 2012-10-06, 20:43   Link #184
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Have to admit it is kinda weird that being in a relationship they didnt talk about it at all in the last couple weeks. Outside of that though it was taboo to talk about anything from real life when your trapped in a virtual reality (guess because its depressing?).
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Old 2012-10-06, 20:44   Link #185
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for Zodiamaster:

Considering it has been two years, I am surprised he manged to stand at all. He should still be unable to move given the amount of time in SAO.
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Old 2012-10-06, 20:51   Link #186
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boduar View Post
Have to admit it is kinda weird that being in a relationship they didnt talk about it at all in the last couple weeks. Outside of that though it was taboo to talk about anything from real life when your trapped in a virtual reality (guess because its depressing?).
I'm not too surprised. Silica brought up how talking about the real world was taboo. I figure in cases where you are getting married in the game, the focus is on the moment. Their old lives are worlds away right now. If they didn't want to have that distinction everyone would call each other by real names and not the game ones. I think it's just a sign of acceptance of the situation. While trapped you are 'that name' so no point thinking about things that don't really matter right now.

Could also just be a "will say it when finally make it." Another reason to keep going is to find out that name .
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Old 2012-10-06, 20:51   Link #187
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Woah. I'm so... just woah. This was the beginning of the story, not the end of the story. I'm so excited to see where it goes next! Honestly, I have no idea!

Now I need to hope the ratings are good so we can get the rest of the story over the next few years
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Old 2012-10-06, 20:53   Link #188
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first arc is finally done. loved every moment of it. as a novel reader, i can't wait to see more
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Old 2012-10-06, 21:01   Link #189
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Ah, what a wonderful episode. At last, the spoilers are lifted. I am as a man in the desert who gets a drink of water.

So, brilliant ep. Really liked how it was executed, including the the flow, the music, the fight... it was a lot more exciting than the LN version. Probably because you get the whole package.

To the asuki poster who speculated, months ago, that Kayaba was Heathcliff, you get internets. Sorry, forgot who you were.

Props to Kirito's seiyuu - he seems to be a younger less experienced guy, but he really hit it outta the ballpark this ep.

All in all solid ep, and I'd second Churchill's quote: This is the end of the beginning, and there's still more to come in the next eleven episodes.

The only thing that I do wish had been done in these 14 episodes was a scene that was removed from the light novel version of Murder Case:

Spoiler for Scene with Heathcliff in Murder Case:


On the other hand, in a more amusing note, the crappy taste of ramen in that place, due to the lack of soy sauce, is what really spurred Asuna to begin her project of recreating soy sauce.

That said, at the end of all this: Really, Kayaba. You wanted to create your own world, so you made a death game. Seriously? *sighs*
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Old 2012-10-06, 21:05   Link #190
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Originally Posted by Boduar View Post
Have to admit it is kinda weird that being in a relationship they didnt talk about it at all in the last couple weeks. Outside of that though it was taboo to talk about anything from real life when your trapped in a virtual reality (guess because its depressing?).
That and it serves as a reminder that it's a game they're trapped in. Problematic as it can make you careless because you think "It's a game, not a life or death battle." or serve as a reminder when you're trying to have a vacation and enjoy life that your new "marriage" is just a game mechanic.
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Old 2012-10-06, 21:09   Link #191
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That and it serves as a reminder that it's a game they're trapped in. Problematic as it can make you careless because you think "It's a game, not a life or death battle." or serve as a reminder when you're trying to have a vacation and enjoy life that your new "marriage" is just a game mechanic.
That's the paradox of SAO - You're in a game, but at the same time you can't treat it as a game, but it isn't exactly real life either. This is lampshaded in-universe.
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Old 2012-10-06, 21:34   Link #192
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This is lampshaded in-universe.
I think Kayaba realized that at the end, that his "castle" was a fake.


My question to Kayaba would be, "isn't reality the actual castle? Can't you accept that?"

But of course, in a way, SAO is about the glorification of your inner child's fantasies. So Kirito, the main character, ends up validating Kayaba's crazy quest for the "real" fantasy world, and it wouldn't be rare if he himself finds it at some point down the line.

Now, this works in fiction, or more appropriately, as a concept, but it's very divorced from reality, because there's no such thing as "real fantasy"; it's a freaking oxymoron. It's either fantasy or reality, but it can't be both.

Long story short, sucks to be Kayaba. SAO (the story as a whole) might end up "proving" him right at some point, but it will come as a cheat, as the epitome of fantasy fulfillment.

I bet I'm the first person in this forum to ever use that term to describe something other than fanservice.
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Old 2012-10-06, 22:03   Link #193
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I guess we'll have to wait and see; it does look like he survived. I guess if you want a novel answer, it should probably go to the Q&A thread. (Even if he had died in the game, I am assuming the he didn't set his own NerveGear to fry him... unless that violates his twisted concept of fairness, despite otherwise giving himself in-game immunity to death... )
As an anime only viewer, I keep wanting to expect that people never actually died. That, since users in game were isolated from the real world, threat of death was really all he needed to do in order to accomplish his goals.

That said, there have been enough posts that have taken this death thing as said and done, as I assume LN readers are inadvertently letting their pre-knowledge color their posts, that I have to assume people really did die.

Which brings us to the question you probably asked rhetorically. If he was being "fair", then he should have died upon his avatar being killed. He didn't, so he wasn't fair at all. Which makes his choice of invulnerability that much more interesting. It hints at a far different personality than simply being a high-minded genius with a whack sense of morality. If he made himself invulnerable despite having nothing to fear, then he's just a pathetic gamer who thrives on easy victories, which sheds a completely different light on his character, and negates any attempts he made at the end to sound like he had some higher purpose to it all.

In fact, with the personality his invulnerability suggests he has, I'm surprised he didn't do more to interfere with people's lives in ways that would give him a power high. I'm sure it would have been an easy feat for him to have simply killed people (or put them in some in-game stasis), and take over their avatar/skin to live their lives. Can you imagine an episode or two where he decided to take over Kirito's avatar and screw Asuna senseless during their honeymooon?



Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Casey View Post
Well, my grandpa seemed to enjoy rehab a lot whenever he had a stroke at 88, so it might actually be pretty exciting!
I can only speak for myself, but I found rehab to be immensely depressing. If it was simply a physical matter, then it would have been fine, but it's the mental aspect that kept crushing my soul and greatly elongating a process that isn't exactly quick to begin with.

In the case of SAO, the fact that they're bucking reality by showing Kirito walking, despite having been bed ridden for 2 years, I can see that either rehab is going to be unrealistically short, or we're going to have a time skip or two.
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Old 2012-10-06, 22:06   Link #194
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Once Kayaba himself said he had planned to betray everybody and turn into the "Final Boss", the dual wield awarded to the "Hero" and that he had planned this world and setting all along you could start to interpret it as him already choreographing the "Ending", although it was a premature one. In how many RPGs, barring the retries, do you see an ending where the Hero doesn't win or one of the characters sacrifices him/herself for the Hero.
Yeah, if I had to explain Asuna's survival, I'd say it's probably part of the plan -- anyone who dies while fighting Kayaba ends up on the invisible ledge; if your team mates win, Kayaba will let you live, and if now ... glass pixels.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
This might be the cheesiest anime episode I've ever watched.

I so, so want to see "SAO: The Abridged Series" just to see somebody like LittleKuriboh have an absolute field day with this episode.
I imagine the plot of this episode would involve everyone getting mad at Kirito for revealing spoilers about the end of the game.
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Old 2012-10-06, 22:09   Link #195
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Enjoyed the episode. Only thing I have to complain about is how awkward the final scene was to me. Kirito walking in the hospital hallway lasted way too long for my liking. It felt... dragged out as it was. Maybe if they added a couple of hospital personnel running over to try and stop/help him or him stumbling once in a while then that would have worked better.
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Old 2012-10-06, 22:10   Link #196
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All in all I'd have to give the SAO arc of the anime a 9/10, I never rate anything perfect anyway.

I liked story, Kirito was likable to me, not perfect, not a loser. I see there's still the "Marty Stu" being tossed in his direction even though he's far from it. He's more along the lines of The Ace. Though my favorite thing about his character was the lack of obliviousness to the feelings of the girls around him and his proactiveness in his relationship with Asuna.

Asuna's character was a relief to watch, seems to me almost every female lead today is Tsundere-ish, which is why I enjoy watching characters like Asuna & Lizbeth, and Kanoe Yuuko from Tasogare Otome X Amnesia. Once Asuna realized her feelings for Kirito she was more then willing to act on them.

Heathcliff.....well, I cant say I didnt suspect him of being Kayaba after his duel with Kirito. The way the introduced him and his attitude and his facial expression after kirito wounded his face in the duel and when he suddenly moved faster as Kirito pointed out, the whole thing just screamed "This is an antagonist, he is not good guy!" but what tipped me off the most was that he was seemingly "peerless." Even though Kirito was the badass Blackswordsman, he still had peers who could stand along side him. Heathcliff on the other hand, just seemed too powerful.

I was hoping to see Kirito & Asuna fight him together instead of just Kirito going it alone, the dynamic to their relationship promoted that if u ask me.

Now I know this is gonna sound rude and I apologize, but, I cant think of another way to put it, the people who are still claiming ass pulls galore for this show, just because you didnt see it coming, doesnt mean it wasnt properly foreshadowed. Asuna breaking out of paralysis didnt seem that shocking, Kirito was seemingly breaking free from it when Cradil/Kuradeel was about to kill him, on seemingly emotion alone, guess Asuna was just that more emotional.

The place where Asuna, Kirito, and Kayaba had there conversation, I think that's where all players who have died go. When Kirito opened up his menu, it said "Final Phase 54%" then ticked up to 55%. When it reaches 100% it probably means the Nerve Gear has finished charging and is going to nuke your brain. It would also explain how both Kirito and Asuna survived. The game logged them both out before it reached 100%. that's my theory anyway.

Kirito and Asuna's "final moments" together were touching. Kirito breaks your heart when he apologizes to Asuna for not freeing her from the game....and then you get him waking up in the hospital. I have to say, he's in bad shape, with no idea where she is, what floor she's on, or if she's even in the same hospital, but goddammit, he's gonna find her.

Why does this feel like I'm writing my final thoughts on this series? Oh right, 11 episodes to go.....wait.
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Old 2012-10-06, 22:13   Link #197
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Well, for all those with questions, I just advise y'all to continue watching.

Having said that, yes, by all accounts, Kirito isn't supposed to be able to walk, but we chalk that up to drama + willpower.

Do not worry about next week's episode, for next week's episode will worry about itself. Look at the virtual squirrel in the forest on Level 22 outside Kirito & Asuna's house: it does not sow or reap, or store away in barns, and yet the Cardinal system ensures that it is fed (virtually).

Edit: Also, I'm facepalming - the name heathcliff sounded quite familliar to me, but it wasn't until I decided to do a search a few minutes ago that I remembered where I'd heard that name: the villain in Wuthering Heights, who seemed a good person but was actually bad. Foreshadowing if anyone here had actually read that book.
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Old 2012-10-06, 22:18   Link #198
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As an anime only viewer, I keep wanting to expect that people never actually died. That, since users in game were isolated from the real world, threat of death was really all he needed to do in order to accomplish his goals.

That said, there have been enough posts that have taken this death thing as said and done, as I assume LN readers are inadvertently letting their pre-knowledge color their posts, that I have to assume people really did die.
Well, I'm not sure what the LNs say. In this episode he said outright that people who already died could not be brought back to life in either world. I don't really see why he'd be lying about it at that point (what benefit would there be?). So I think we have to assume they all died.

Then again, he "conveniently" didn't reveal to them that their own deaths didn't count because they beat the game. I mean, it makes sense that if you beat the game then you'd be allowed to live... but it was still rather cruel for him to not tell them that. I suppose he just didn't think about it (or he's a real a**).

I suppose you could take the fact that they revived to mean that everyone who died really did live and he was just lying... but again, I'm not sure what benefit there'd be to that lie.

Quote:
Originally Posted by creb View Post
Which brings us to the question you probably asked rhetorically. If he was being "fair", then he should have died upon his avatar being killed. He didn't, so he wasn't fair at all. Which makes his choice of invulnerability that much more interesting. It hints at a far different personality than simply being a high-minded genius with a whack sense of morality. If he made himself invulnerable despite having nothing to fear, then he's just a pathetic gamer who thrives on easy victories, which sheds a completely different light on his character, and negates any attempts he made at the end to sound like he had some higher purpose to it all.
Well, given again that Kirito and Asuna didn't die, it makes sense that he too didn't die at that point. (They were all part of the "end game".)

As for why he gave himself that invulnerability... I suppose one reason is because it made his "strength" more legendary, and might attract more strong players to his guild? If he wanted to be someone everyone looked up to and to help prove that the game was beatable, I suppose that's one strategy.

But that aside, it was pretty important that he not be seen dying by any other player, because then he couldn't come back to life. So I'm thinking that the protection was just a safety mechanism to ensure that nothing that could happen could risk him being killed in game, even if he really wouldn't die in real life.


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Originally Posted by creb View Post
In fact, with the personality his invulnerability suggests he has, I'm surprised he didn't do more to interfere with people's lives in ways that would give him a power high. I'm sure it would have been an easy feat for him to have simply killed people (or put them in some in-game stasis), and take over their avatar/skin to live their lives. Can you imagine an episode or two where he decided to take over Kirito's avatar and screw Asuna senseless during their honeymooon?
Uh.... Well, maybe that ties into that same twisted sense of fairness. He was playing the game like one of them, despite having an advantage. To the extent possible, it seems like he didn't really use that advantage except in a passive way to help push the story forward. But yeah, if he were a different type of villain, then who knows what he could have done. I guess -- in a very odd sort of way -- there's something to be slightly thankful for in there.

Anyway, interesting to speculate about this.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Metaneo View Post
The place where Asuna, Kirito, and Kayaba had there conversation, I think that's where all players who have died go. When Kirito opened up his menu, it said "Final Phase 54%" then ticked up to 55%. When it reaches 100% it probably means the Nerve Gear has finished charging and is going to nuke your brain. It would also explain how both Kirito and Asuna survived. The game logged them both out before it reached 100%. that's my theory anyway.
Hmmm... I guess my thought was that it was a reflection of the progress of the Final Phase of the game story (which was destroying the world), so it was ticking up indicating that the world was that much closer of being destroyed (and the game completely finished). But... your idea is interesting anyway. I like the concept.
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Old 2012-10-06, 22:29   Link #199
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Well, in fairness to Kayaba, there would be a potential snag if the players who died in-game just "woke up" in the real world.

Those people who woke up, to find that they were still alive, could tell the government that all it takes to get out of SAO is dying in-game. Then all the Japanese government has to do in order to free everyone from SAO is to hack one guy - Just one guy - Into the game, and have him tell all the players to commit in-game suicide in order to wake up in the real world.

Kayaba's little game/experiment/story would then likely end prematurely.
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Old 2012-10-06, 22:30   Link #200
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whoo my gosh 100 viewing and 10 pages long

thoughts :
- wow kirito must really have an outstanding mind/will power at least thats how i understood everything. a) was able to move and stab kayaba/heathcliff while on the verge of dissappearing. b) was able to notice the discrepancy regarding k/h HP bar and drew conclusion from that and best of all c) WAS ABLE TO WALK after two years of no activity!
(although there are studies in imagery/brain science that states that what the brain thinks the body just follow, so maybe since they were very active online the body is just folowing suit. sort a like how there's a liimited balance between the right and left side of your body even if you only exercise one side the other side also conpensates.. a bit ^^, problem was there's no proper nutrient intake while they were in the hospital)
anyway K/H himself acknowledged that in their final talk. when he said he never thought someone would overcome "his world's Laws" BTW this also aplies to Asuna after all she moved while under paralysis power of love?

- a little bit disappointed that the boss fight ended abrubtly, but i guess it wasn't the focus of the episode and the series for that matter at all.

- the "change into an immortal object" thing, well yeah i got that immediately just like relentless said thought of that as menu thing with red signifying off state. can't be for asuna as she is already paralyzed (in K/H thinking)

- and yeah everyone at the end obviously can remove their helmet since the game has already been cleared and they were logged out forcibly by the system. well at least the live ones.

that for now loved the episode , and the series so far . will add some later
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