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Sword Art Online: Is It Worst? (Truth Exposed)

Sword Art Online is one of the most popular Isekai Anime series out there with a huge fan base and an even bigger following on social media, it baffles me to see why people love this series so much.

Although this series has a good start there are some issues with it that may make you want to avoid watching it. 

Below we’ll explore what makes SAO so popular as well as why is it considered so bad among the Anime community.

About SAO

Thousands of people are stuck in a new virtual MMORPG in 2022, and the lone wolf player, Kirito, strives to escape, to beat the game, players must win all 100 Floors and beat the final boss.

TitleSword Art Online
Genre Action, Adventure, Science fiction
Written byReki Kawahara
Produced byA-1 Pictures
About Sword art Online

Why is Sword Art Online so popular?

There are many reasons why Sword Art Online is so popular.

First of all, the show has unique premises. The introduction of a futuristic and realistic future scenario piqued the interest of many keen Anime fans, leading to self-insertions and a cruise for the show’s success.

Future time, when VR gaming is widespread, is the setting of Sword Art Online.

Since VGs are extremely popular in Japan, as they are everywhere else on the earth, is it any surprise that an Anime based on a VG would be as popular?

Unlike previous game-trapped iterations of this notion, SAO is set in the future, when VR gaming is commonplace.

With the rise of AI, AR, and even VR today, Anime that deals intelligently with these concepts is going to be popular. Also, it was one of the shows that promoted the now-dominant Isekai genre in recent years.

Aside from that, it kind of just falls flat. The first 12-episode arc was really fairly fantastic while they were actually in the SAO game, but after that, it was simply a poorly written cluster fest. The plot is very linear and predictable, with shallow characters and a Mary Sue heroine.

Lastly and most importantly, the animation quality is exceptional too, it really stands out among other shows like One Piece or Dragon Ball Z which tend not to look so good compared with SAO.

What do people actually like about it?

The concept of virtual reality. It’s interesting to see how Anime uses this technology in different ways. The idea that you could die in your favorite game is exciting but also makes you think about whether or not VR is as safe as we once thought it to be.

Sword Art Online is a virtual reality MMO game that players access using a VR headset. SAO allows players complete freedom within its world thanks largely due their control over choices made earlier on during gameplay.

This means getting better at fighting monsters and completing quests while still maintaining their personality traits such as kindness or courage. 

Due largely to the players’ authority over past gameplay decisions, SAO gives players unlimited freedom within its environment.

What is so bad about Sword Art Online?

So what’s the problem with Sword Art Online? Well, there are many things. 

Sword Art Online is an MMO game and anyone who plays MMO will find the Aincrad or ALO system in the Anime very illogical.

Even if you consider Sword Art Online as a virtual reality-based MMO It is not something a gamer could relate to or enjoy.

SAO in 5 minutes

For one thing, the script writing is not that good. It’s filled with cliches and stereotypes, you have your main character who is always undefeatable with little to no character development. There’s also lots of fan service and sexual violence, which is inappropriate for younger audiences.

The secondary characters aren’t very impactful! They’re not remarkably realistic either. All the secondary characters have little to no involvement in the actual plot even if they die halfway through an episode it will not have any major impact on the storyline.

Most importantly though, every season of Sword Art Online has had at least one scenario in which a female character is sexually tortured, generally by a male villain character.

For years, viewers have been outspoken about their disgust with the exploitative nature of this recurring story element. Despite Reki Kawahara’s acknowledgment and apologies, the most recent season had a very violent scene.

It’s not a good picture for the popular Isekai, especially when combined with SAO’s continual inclusion of fan service-style representations of its female characters.

Is Kirito a good protagonist?

Kirito is a fantastic gamer, a nice guy, and a very powerful character in the anime.

If you’ve ever played an MMO RPG game, you know how difficult it is to succeed without the help of a guild. Kirito never joined a guild but easily defeated every Boss level.

This is where things start to go wrong. In addition, Kirito’s romance storyline with Asuna is depicted more than the Boss stages in the anime. Kirito didn’t have to explore the entire globe of Sword Art Online because he was “powerful,” according to the anime.

What is Akihiko Kayaba’s ultimate goal?

Akihiko Kayaba created the online simulation Sword Art Online. He desired to create a Virtual Reality environment that was superior to the real world.

Virtual reality cannot be considered real unless it includes the notion of depth. Inside the game, Akihiko Kayaba gave all of the participants their true appearance.

It’s understandable that he wanted to create a VR world that was better than reality, but at what cost? He traps 10,000 players, with the majority of them dying by the end. The irony is that he was not portrayed as a horrible guy in the end.

Akihiko Kayaba’s motivations were insufficient to make him a villain. However, as a result of his acts, many people died for no reason.

Did SAO go downhill?

SAO started out as a good Anime. It had an interesting premise, and the first and second seasons were solid. But then things went downhill for season three, which became what many critics refer to as one of the worst Anime series ever made.

Instead of introducing the MC’s gang members, there was no story development in the original Sword Art arc.

The original Sword Art Online has been criticized by some fans because it’s not nearly as memorable or engaging as other titles in its genre.

From the Sword Art original arc, there was no story development rather than introducing the MC’s gang members. The characters who die did not even connect with the audience during their screen time, and the constant praises of Kirito made no sense. 

The show started going downhill from the Alfheim online arc. Kirito beat the rivals in a game where he just showed up three days ago, while the players had been preparing for the showdown for months, plus a lot of Kirito’s god modding, Fan service, and incest made it unbearable to watch. 

Another thing that made this Anime go downhill is the portrayal of Asuna as a damsel in distress when she was shown as the strong female protagonist in the Beginning. 

Kirito is an illogical protagonist!

The ultimate game prodigy Kirito is an Otaku who gets entrapped in the VR world of SAO. 

He made zero sense during major action sequences during the Anime. The Gun Gale arc was probably the best arc among the rest dark, violent and grim.

Kirito does the absolute nonsense and pulls out a sword in a gunfight. And he actually wins by cutting out the bullets with a whipping lightsaber like a Space Jedi trapped in VR. 

Is Sword Art Online good or bad?

Sword Art Online is an Anime that had so much potential initially but it all went wrong because of unnecessary emphasis on irrelevant topics. 

Although fans consider it a gateway for VR Isekai Anime, the storyline and characters were not that impressive. After the first arc, it became too lovey-dovey, which was off-putting.

The supporting characters were enjoyable, but they had much too little screen time. It was as if the Anime had forgotten about them. 

Then there was the second story arc. It wasn’t as horrible as many predicted, but it was still nothing near as fantastic as the first arc. It simply didn’t have the same sense as the previous arc. It had a wonderful environment that reminded me of Final Fantasy, but the romantic stuff was boring and unnecessary.

In short, SAO is an average Anime, based on my opinion only.

Some RPG gamers actually loved it and are still rooting for its fourth season. 

Is Sword Art Online a Harem Anime?

Kirito, the main character, has affection for the female Asuna.

Sword Art Online is not a harem Anime. The main character of Sword Art Online Kirito is also not a harem protagonist—he has romantic feelings for one girl Asuna.

And, while it is not a harem, it has elements of one. But it is only just the main lead being popular.

Sword Art Online retains the basic concept of a harem, with many girls crushing over the main character. And because SAO is primarily a fantasy RPG Isekai, the emphasis on the harem is not that much compared to a straight harem.

One thing that makes it a controversial Anime is that it has some element of incest in it since Kirito’s cousin has a crush on him too. 


  • Sword Art Online is an okay Isekai Anime, but it has its flaws. 
  • SAO has a great deal of violence in sexual contexts and incest that can not be suitable for younger audiences.
  • The series has a lot going for it but at the same time, there are also some issues with Sword Art Online that we think need to be addressed before the show can really reach its full potential.

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