SAO Alternative is one of the anime that I’m currently watching this spring. Back then, I did say that SAO Alternative isn’t any better than the original SAO considering that the story is based on a shaky premise.
So, does my stance change as the anime is about to approach the end as I write this?
Well, I admit that my stance about the anime changed a bit ever since then. In fact, I never imagined that the anime could be this entertaining to watch.
To be frank, I still find Pitohui’s reason for wanting LLENN to come after her in the second SJ isn’t that strong. But at least we know that Pitohui is the nasty person in the game that you should never come near.
Putting Pitohui’s reasoning aside, I still think that SAO Alternative is better than the original SAO.
It has a realistic portrayal of Kohiruimaki Karen (aka LLENN)
As an author, it’s crucial for me to portray the character as someone that anyone can relate to even if the character is nonhuman or an android.
You can create a character that anyone can relate to by making the character to be as realistic as possible.
And that’s when SAO Alternative hits the home run here.
Karen is just like everyone else who plays GGO for the first time. It was only through a lot of practice, hard work, and dedication that makes her good in GGO.
And let’s not forget that Pitohui and M help with making her understand the GGO mechanism even further.
I like the idea of how Karen is being portrayed as someone who is not good at anything that they do for the first time.
It’s because of this reason that I find Kirito being good at GGO is somewhat unrealistic. I thought that it was his first time playing GGO? Why is he able to wing it as if he has been playing the game for such a long time?
I’m sure that I’m not the only one who finds it strange. This part alone is enough for people to go as far as saying that Kirito destroys everything that he gets involved.
Well, I won’t go that far to label him that way. At least he doesn’t destroy the AR game that he played in Ordinal Scale.
It emphasizes a lot on the tactics and strategies during SJ
It doesn’t take a lot of episodes to find out that SAO Alternative emphasizes a lot on the tactics and strategies that they’re using during Squad Jam or SJ for short.
The Phantom Bullet arc does have a few tactics and strategies in place. But it’s not as massive as the one in SAO Alternative.
I admit that this part of SAO Alternative get me excited a little bit since the books that I write do emphasize a lot on the tactics and strategies.
There’s no way I’m letting my characters charging in without any plan, right?
This part of SAO Alternative also reminds me of World Trigger during the Rank War arc. I have to say that World Trigger does help me a lot when it comes to putting the tactics and strategies into place.
If you read World Trigger manga or watch the anime, the situation during the Rank War in World Trigger is more or less like the one in SAO Alternative.
The team who wins the battle tends to have the best tactics and strategies that work for them and the situation they’re in.
It’s not as bad as it seems
Many people don’t like the original SAO because of how the story is poorly written. Heck, even the author of SAO itself, Kawahara Reiki admitted himself that SAO isn’t as good as his other work, Accel World.
I’m not going to lie here that any derivative work won’t be any better if it’s based on a shaky premise.
But then again, it takes a talented writer to turn a story with a shaky premise into something better.
And SAO Alternative proves it.
Sure, it may not be the anime that I’m so looking forward to watching every week. But if I have to pick between SAO Alternative and the original SAO, I will choose SAO Alternative in a heartbeat.