During a stage panel at the recent Dengeki Bunko Aki no Saiten 2017 event, the staff of the anime adaptation of Reki Kawahara and abec’s Sword Art Online light novel series have officially announced a third season of the Sword Art Online TV anime. As speculated, Season 3 will adapt the highly anticipated Alicization arc from the novels.
Here is the announcement video of season 3, titled Sword Art Online: Alicization, which includes the post-credits scene of the original anime film, Sword Art Online the Movie: Ordinal Scale.
In the post credit sequence of the film, Kikuoka Seijirou shows off a room and welcomes Shigemura Tetsuhiro (one of the movie’s original characters) to ‘Rath’. The significance of this is that Rath is a company that made its debut in the light novel’s Alicization Arc, the next major arc in the series, playing an important role in the arc by supplying the technology for the story’s virtual reality device. The arc itself began in volume 9 of the light novel and ended with volume 18.
The voice cast for Eugeo and Alice from the video games will reprise their roles for the new characterss for the third season:
- Nobunaga Shimazaki (Haruka Nanase from Free!) will voice Eugeo
- Ai Kayano (Utaha Kasumigaoka in Saenai Heroine no Sodatekata) is going to voice Alice
The main cast of the anime franchise includes:
- Yoshitsugu Matsuoka (Sora in No Game No Life) will be back to voice Kirito
- Haruka Tomatsu (Haruka Takayama in Sakura Trick) returns as Asuna
- Kanae Itou (Ruiko Saten from Toaru Kagaku no Railgun) voicing as Yui
- Rina Hidaka (Airi Kashii in Ro-Kyu-Bu!) as Silica
- Ayahi Takagaki (Mikako Satsukitane in Sora no Otoshimono) will voice Lisbeth
- Ayana Taketatsu (Kirino Kousaka from Oreimo) voicing Leafa
- Miyuki Sawashiro (Celty Sturluson from Durarara!!) is back as Sinon
- Hiroaki Hirata (Sanji from One Piece) will return to voice Klein
During Anime Expo 2015, A-1 Pictures president Tomonori Ochikoshi a panel that they would continue to make more Sword Art Online anime as long as Reki Kawahara continues to write more light novels.
The original anime film of the series, Sword Art Online: Ordinal Scale, released on Saturday, February 18th in Japan in over 150 theatres and had a worldwide release on March 9th, across 1000 screens.
Sword Art Online is a light novel series written by Reki Kawahara and illustrated by abec, who also is the author of Accel World. The light novel series began in 2009 being published in ASCII Media Works’ Dengeki Bunko. To date a total of 20 volumes have been compiled in the series. Since the series’ debut, the series has sold over 19 million copies, with 12.5 million sold in Japan alone. Additionally in 2012, an anime adaptation was released. The Sword Art Online anime aired in July and was produced by A-1 Pictures, which received a large reception; it was followed by a recap film, a second season, and an original anime film that released in over 1000 screens worldwide. Since then, the series has appeared on a plethora of media with international merchandise, various manga adaptations of the light novel’s arcs, and video games. In addition, Kawahara has relaunched the series as Sword Art Online: Progressive, a re-release of the light novels with additional content.
Here is a synopsis of the anime from MAL:
1 year after the SAO incident, Kirito is approached by Seijiro Kikuoka from Japan’s Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications Department “VR Division” with a rather peculiar request.
That was an investigation on the “Death Gun” incident that occurred in the gun and steel filled VRMMO called Gun Gale Online (GGO). “Players who are shot by a mysterious avatar with a jet black gun lose their lives even in the real world…” Failing to turn down Kikuoka’s bizarre request, Kirito logs in to GGO even though he is not completely convinced that the virtual world could physically affect the real world.
Kirito wanders in an unfamiliar world in order to gain any clues about the “Death Gun.” Then, a female sniper named Sinon who owns a gigantic “Hecate II” rifle extends Kirito a helping hand. With Sinon’s help, Kirito decides to enter the “Bullet of Bullets,” a large tournament to choose the most powerful gunner within the realm of GGO, in hopes to become the target of the “Death Gun” and make direct contact with the mysterious avatar.
The third season of Sword Art Online, Sword Art Online: Alicization, will cover the highly anticipated Alicization arc. Further details about the upcoming season, including when it will air, will be revealed in the upcoming months.
Source Article - Anime News Network
“Sword Art Online: Alicization”, “Sword Art Online”, images and all associated brands and titles © 2017 Reki Kawahara, A-1 Pictures, ASCII Media Works and the SAO Project