Why does Sword Art Online receive so much criticism?

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Why does Sword Art Online receive so much criticism?
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Sword Art Online Progressive screenshot

The anime of Sword Art Online It has a curious path, it started out with a lot of popularity, but as history and the years progressed it received more and more criticism. At the Reddit Anime fans are debating why Sword Art Online is so divisive.

Sword Art Online is a novel written by Reki Kawahara and has become a cultural phenomenon since its paper debut in 2009. The story follows Kazuto Kirigaya, also known as Kirito, and other players who become trapped in an MMORPG called Sword Art Online. Unable to leave the game unless they complete their levels, players must fight to survive in a virtual world full of dangers.

However, despite its intriguing premise and impressive animation by the studio A-1 Pictures (86: Eighty-Six, Solo LEveling, Kaguya-sama: Love is War), Sword Art Online has been divisive among anime fans. Some praise its exciting concepts of action, romance and virtual reality, while others criticize its narrative pacing, character development and representation of relationships.

Ultimately, the love and hate for Sword Art Online reflect the diversity of opinions within the community. While some enjoy its fast-paced action and romance, others lament its lack of depth and character development. In a world where tastes are as varied as anime themselves, Sword Art Online continues to be a topic of passionate debate among fans of the genre.

  • It’s an incredibly mediocre anime that became SUPER popular. This really irritates some people. “No one would complain if they had a mediocre reception.
  • It’s a perfectly normal series that showed signs of being above average only to regress, earning people’s hatred. The fact that the main character is quite boring, and that the series continues to create new girls to add to a pseudo harem even though he was already taken in the first story arc, doesn’t help at all. However, the third season was good, but that might be because Kirito feels like a more interesting character when he moves away from everyone he’s met in the previous two seasons, at least for me.
  • For me, a combination of characters without much personality, Kirito overly powerful, which takes away the tension of the fights he takes part in, huge holes in the story, terrible pacing, meaningless game mechanics, unnecessary and annoying fanservice even in serious moments…
  • What people hate is usually the second half of the first season (Fairy Dance) and the first 2/3 of the second season (GGO). That’s a little more than half of all SAO up to the release of Ordinal Scale, so as a result, SAO itself doesn’t have a great reputation. I thought SAO was absolutely amazing when I started watching it, but even with all my enthusiasm, these two arcs were definitely disappointing compared to my expectations after the first few episodes. I don’t hate them, to me they were just average (Aincrad and Mother’s Rosario were great), but I understand why people hate them.
  • Because it became “cool” to hate Sword Art Online.
  • I hate that statement with a passion. As someone who doesn’t like SAO, it’s annoying to see people completely dissolve their opinions into “it’s popular so they automatically hate it”. It’s a very easy way to completely dismiss someone’s opinion, and it seems to be the worst case with SAO currently. Just because I don’t like the show doesn’t mean I can’t stand its popularity or look down on people who do like it.
  • It’s as superficial as it is popular.
  • The problem with the anime is that only the first 13 episodes of the first season are good. They went for gold and created some fairy anime garbage for the final part, followed by some kind of VR unknown to the player. I tried to watch the second season three different times, each time without success, I ended up so bored that I fell asleep, or started playing on my smartphone, realizing 15 minutes into the episode that I had no idea what was happening.
  • It’s a shame, they had huge potential to make this amazing anime, the Sword Art Online part was the best and they rushed it. They had 100 unique floors to work on and no limits because it was VR. They rushed it, they could have made a really amazing long series. Instead of seeing Kirito progress, train, grow, we see little pieces of his life.
  • Poorly written popcorn entertainment, which isn’t bad in itself. Problems arise when it is also very popular and has a huge fan following (even rivaling JOJOs) of teenagers who think the series is the best thing ever.
  • Mainly because it’s much more popular than it should be… Don’t get me wrong, I also love the series (Kirito x Asuna <3)... but there are many others out there that are much better, but aren't as popular. Many consider this unfair.
  • Because it takes the most basic aspects of the narrative and throws it out the window out of laziness. Seriously, although I liked it, as a series it had major objective flaws that I couldn’t ignore. I agree with harems, fanservice and broken protagonists, but the point is that it has to be done right, and SAO was the complete opposite of that. In fact, it’s useful as a tool to show people how not to write. I don’t know how the third season was, but the first was bad and the second was even worse.
  • SAO also has inconsistent characters like Kirito, who changes personality depending on what the author wants him to do. Yes, there are people like you who love it, people like me who watch it to learn how to not tell a story and just laugh at anime in general. However, there are also people who will hate the anime’s popularity because due to these flaws they believe that its popularity was completely undeserved.
  • It’s because the premise was good, but it quickly turned into a harem simulator. Even the film had a “Rocky Balboa” theme, where the protagonist loses control and then regains it. A little cliché. The only redeeming part for me was the second arc with GGO, with Yukki.

Why does Sword Art Online receive so much criticism?

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Why does Sword Art Online receive so much criticism?

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