Some new details regarding the recently announced Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization have begun to trickle out thanks to an interview in this week’s Dengeki PlayStation with the game’s producer – Yosuke Futami.
We now know the following;
- The concept began with the idea of wanting to make a game where you play as Kirito and start from level one. Though things have changed, the current concept of the game is still along those lines.
- The idea is to have you play in a world that is like the early days of Sword Art Online, but as you advance things will unfold differently since they won’t actually be the same world.
- The new world you’ll play in isn’t split into layers like Aincrad ends up, but is a fully connected land mass.
- The game will have a battle system that uses a skill palette.
- The Vita version will allow touch functions for using the skill palettes.
- There will be raid fights.
- There will be plenty of elements involving management of party members.
- There will be no auto-attacks.
- You can jump.
- You’ll have three additional allies in battle, making combo attacks and complex moves a real treat to use.
- The new heroine shown in the debut trailer and media is around 14 years old, and is an AI character that will travel with Kirito and his party while her programming continues to mature (sort of like Yui).
- There are plans for online multiplayer.
While this by no means paints a full picture of what we’ll see with the new title, the vague outline of inclusions and ideas found in the interview do give us a sense of where the game is headed. It seems like they want to give you more room to stretch out with that connected world concept – but they also seem to be tightening up abilities with the addition of jump, removal of auto-attack, and the various battle tweaks.
There are even some signs that they’re listening to player comments from past titles, as they’ve noted very quickly the inclusion of online multiplayer (which was something many Hollow Fragment players certainly asked for).
Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization is due out in Japan sometime in 2016, with no news yet on a Western localization.