Sword Art Online Variant Showdown (SAOVS), the franchise’s 10th-anniversary game project, released the full version of the opening video with the theme song by Eir Aoi, titled “ANSWER” on Twitter and YouTube. Studio A-1 Pictures, which has been animating the series’ anime adaptations, produced the video. The game is open for pre-registration on Apple’s App Store and Google’s Google Play in Japanese and English, and the launch date is set for sometime in 2022.
The official Twitter account apologized for a spelling error in the video in a follow-up tweet: Sinon’s name was written as “Shinon.” The main cast from the anime will be returning for the game and some fan-favorite characters will also be appearing.
Layla, original game character, was introduced at Tokyo Game Show 2022 SAO Special Live-Streaming event on September 18. She uses twin swords and is seeking something within the game’s world. Sumire Uesaka, who will be voicing Layla, was able to pick her birthday out of three options: she went with January 22, which is known as Curry Day in Japan.
On the same day, it was also announced that Virtual YouTuber agency Hololive Production’s Sakura Miko and Murasaki Shion will join the force of Minato Aqua to clear SAOVS. Their streams for gaming and new updates are scheduled in the near future.
The game’s official website is available also in English and describes the plot of as:
“Have you heard of Cross Edge?”
It’s a title Kirito has heard before.
A game which has attracted a lot of attention from players,
not least because it was supposedly designed by a middle school genius.
One day at the Dicey Café, Kirito hears two rumors about Cross Edge.
The first: There’s a mysterious player who attacks out of nowhere.
Losing to them means losing a portion of your own memories.
The second: This player goes around wearing a hood pulled low to hide their eyes…
Kirito can’t help but recall Laughing Coffin, the player-killer guild he faced in SAO.
In part to investigate these rumors, Kirito and his friends begin playing Cross Edge…and are soon targeted in a surprise attack.