Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization

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7 / 10
Jun 11, 2019

At the end of the day, Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization is the kind of game that you probably already know if you’re interested in or not. This is an anime-inspired, in-depth RPG that comes with all the trappings, good and bad, that your mind associates with that description.

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6.7 / 10.0
Nov 17, 2016

A lot of effort was clearly put into Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization, because almost every aspect of its gameplay has an underlying set of properties and nuances to come to grips with. While I usually love that kind of complexity, here it rarely felt meaningful or even coherent. Paired with a story that lacks the stakes and urgency of the source material, it leaves Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization feeling pretty tepid aside from its enjoyable combat.

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5 / 10
Dec 12, 2016

Sword Art Online is built on high-stakes drama and a compelling premise--Hollow Realization delivers on neither.

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7.5 / 10.0
Dec 7, 2016

I feel conflicted about Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization, because while it’s never been more interesting to play as a game, the fact that its narrative is typical of latter-day Sword Art Online stories has actually become something of a liability. A bolder story, one that took more risk, established a better sense of stakes, or even did something other than tread water would definitely not be Sword Art Online-like, and would make it much easier to recommend to people outside the show’s fanbase. As it stands, though, Hollow Realization remains a Sword Art Online game, for better and worse.

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8 / 10.0
Nov 15, 2016

This new installment of the Sword Art saga comes to PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita with brand new gameplay and great graphics that will be entertaining for the fans of the saga.

Review in Spanish | Read full review

7 / 10
Nov 18, 2016

The only real problem that Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization has is that it’s a little too steady and a little too laid-back. The premise is that this is Sword Art but without the death, and really without those stakes, and with its tepid narrative, you may begin to question why you’re grinding through so much of the game. That being said, this is the best digital rendition of Sword Art Online thus far, and goes a long way to capturing the essence of the show – warts and all.

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7.9 / 10.0
Nov 15, 2016

Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization is a good JRPG. It's made with diligence, dedicated to anime fans from which it's drawn, but also suitable for simple lovers of the genre.

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7.2 / 10.0
Nov 14, 2016

A game sustained by its combat system and its attractive history, although it is so much repetitive.

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8 / 10.0
Nov 24, 2016

With it being the first SAO game set outside the anime, it does a good job of creating a new story, even if it takes some time to get going.

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Nov 20, 2016

While the combat is well designed and the worlds feels more expansive and alive than ever, the pacing with the story and overabundance of dialogue prevent Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization from taking the series to the next level.

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50 / 100
Nov 28, 2016

Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization is a game that places too much of its emphasis on its dating sim mechanics rather than a polished RPG experience. Dodgy armor designs mar the progression that the weapons add to the game, and a rather stale storyline does not give enough motivation to want to progress through the game.

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5 / 10.0
Jun 6, 2019

Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization Deluxe Edition is based on an engaging premise. However, this clumsy port of a title not exactly excellent fails to realize the potential that has fascinated the public.

Review in Italian | Read full review

6.4 / 10.0
Nov 23, 2016

What turns out to be a fun JRPG with a big world to explore and good combat is marred by bad story, bad quests and some diabolical pacing. Only recommended for SAO fans.

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6 / 10.0
Nov 21, 2016

Hollow Realization is the best Sword Art Online game to date but that doesn't mean it's great by any means. If you're a fan of the franchise this game is a no brainer as it’s packed with so much content you can put as many hours into it as you would an actual MMO. It’s just a shame that a lot of that content is as Hollow as its name suggests.

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7 / 10
Nov 18, 2016

An improperly paced plot and annoying artificial intelligence aside, Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization is the best Sword Art Online game on PS4. It's utterly packed with content, from the lengthy main campaign and tons of optional side quests all the way through to challenging co-op trials and even dating sim minigames. The combat's got a nice edge to it, too, and there's a lot to be said for the sense of adventure that exploring Ainground instils. For fans of the source material, this is a no-brainer, but even if you're not into the property's waifu wars, Hollow Realization still offers hours upon hours of RPG fun.

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73 / 100
Nov 18, 2016

The characters are drawn in speaking cutscenes as well, and look authentic when compared to their source material.

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71 / 100
Dec 19, 2016

Hollow Realization is easily the best game based on the SAO Series; however its far from perfect. Albeit it offers a functional scheme of controls, a rich world to explore and an ambitious relations system, its weak and boring story, confusing menus and poor character AI make this game a hard test for all those die-hard fans. If you are a desperate gamer then maybe you will have a difficult time with this game; if you prevail all of its flaws, then you will get rewarded with a game that overflows with personality and fanservice.

Review in Spanish | Read full review

3.25 / 5.0
Jan 4, 2017

Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization feels like a game that’s on the cusp of something great but is held back by a few hiccups. The story is interesting and quite fleshed out, and the base combat has potential. The inconsistent pacing, sketchy AI and grindy nature of the game, however, make it feel like a slog after a while. If you’re a fan of SAO, though, this is worth checking out just to re-experience Aincrad’s rebirth once again.

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7.5 / 10.0
Nov 11, 2016

Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization is an enormous title, especially when compared to his most recent predecessor. Unfortunately the game is once again devoid of a charismatic antagonist and a solid storyline.

Review in Italian | Read full review

8 / 10.0
Nov 21, 2016

I came in expecting another bad anime game but was instead blown away by Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization’s enormous game world, addictive combat and different gameplay systems. Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization has a charming cast of lovable characters, plenty of dialogue, countless missions, skills, equipment and areas to uncover, relationships with the girls, a level cap of 100 — I could go on. The abysmal story pacing, technical blemishes, online shortcomings and inadequate tutorials are considerable shortcomings, but not enough to keep this from being a standout action RPG.

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