takashichea (Level 25)

Hitting the hay, Wed will be busy since I got to work on papers
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Inspired by the Sword Art Online discussion and the trailer blog that we have in Anime Vice, .Hack is a topic that came up recently. I was interested about the show and what it had in common with Sword Art Online.

Now, I'm a Sword Art Online fan who has no prior knowledge of the .Hack series which is massive. Feel free to correct me in this discussion. I will add everyone's input in this blog. Please help promote the discussion. All comments are welcome.

First off, let's introduce the franchises.

Sword Art Online

Technological innovation named Nerve Gear allows players to enter virtual world, achieving the true immersion. Soon after the invention of Nerve Gear, beta invitations of MMO named Sword Art Online are sent to numerous players. The game was fun to play until player realized that they cannot log out of the game. Suddenly creator of Sword Art Online appears and announces that everybody in the game are trapped within, until they defeat boss at top of dungeon.

Via Anime Vice


This franchise that first started out as a video game has spawn multiple video game, anime, and manga adaptations.

Note: I don't have the overall plot of the franchise, so I list a few anime series.


.hack starts in a fictional 2005, introducing a computer virus called Pluto's Kiss as the cause of a massive Internet shutdown.[11] The results are described as catastrophic:[12] traffic lights shut down, planes collide in midair, and the United States' nuclear missiles are nearly launched. As a consequence, cyberspace is subjected to severe restrictions. The virus affects all operating systems except for one, Altimit OS, the only operating system immune to all computer viruses.

Via Wikipedia

.Hack//Legend of the Twilight

Winning the legendary characters “Kite” and “Black Rose” from an event held by the creators of the MMORPG ‘The World,’ Shugo and his twin sister Rena steps into ‘The World’. Together they completed events and quests, along with their new friends Ouka, Mirelle, Hotaru and Sanjuro. Soon after, mysterious monsters appeared, and death by these monsters caused players to slip into a coma in the real world. Only Shugo and Rena can solve this problem, but why are they being targeted, and what secrets is the game hiding?

Via MyAnimeList


After the destruction of "The World" in 2015, CC Corporation rebuilt the game using data from what was previously to be another game. "The World R:2" was then released in 2016. A newcomer to the game, Haseo, is instantly PKed and then revived by a mysterious man known as Ovan. With the problem of PKs occupying the game, Haseo soon after receives help from a female Harvest known as Shino. Amidst curiosity and confusion, Haseo is lead to joining the guild known as the Twilight Brigade. The guild that searches for the legendary object known as the "Key of the Twilight". Set before the .hack//G.U. game.

Via MyAnimeList


Unlike the Sket Dance and Gintama Similarities and Differences blog, the characters in both series are going to be hard to put down similarities, so I decided to just put down the overall details.

Beware of Spoilers!

  • Both shows are set in massive virtual MMORG worlds.
  • Player Killings are present in both series
  • Like Kirito and Asuna of Sword Art Online who have a romantic relationship, Aura and Kite have an romantic relationship.
  • Races: Only in Sword Art Online's ALFheim world, there are multiple races just like .Hack's races.
  • Guilds: Both SAO and .Hack have concept due to being MMORGs. However, the guild system in .Hack is more complex and intricate.


Beware of Spoilers!

  • Protagonists: Sword Art Online has one main protagonist, Kirito. Compared to .Hack, there are multiple protagonists with their own stories: Kite, Tsukasa, Sakuya, and Aura.
  • Sword Art Online has three main arcs while .Hack is more massive with multiple side stories.
  • Regions: It appears that .Hack encompasses the world. (I could be wrong here). For Sword Art Online, the franchise is concentrated in Japan.
  • Antagonists: In .Hack, it's Morgianna, an AI like Aura. For Sword Art Online, it's two male characters: Akihiko Kayaba and Sugou Nobuyuki who are human and control only one world.
  • Earlier we said .Hack started out as a video game, Sword Art Online started out as a web novel.
  • Artificial Intelligence: So far, the only AI seen in Sword Art Online is Yui while in .Hack, there are AI, Vagrant AIs, and the Ultimate AI. .Hack is more involved with these beings.

Buhssuht's Comment

My teammate, Buhssuht, has some awesome thoughts for us.

  • While the chaos in SAO is caused by creator alone, the abnormality in .hack is cause by mysterious entity, creating programs that breaks all the rule of programming and real world
  • .hack concentrate on game known as The World, but in SAO franchise the main characters move on to different game
  • No offense, but SAO is more of harem series. .hack is more of... adolescence of teenager for lack of better terms.


Even though I don't know the characters well in .Hack, I look up their personalities and relationships of several characters in spite of spoilers. I find two characters in .Hack that have some common ground with Kirito and Asuna.

Sword Art OnlineSimilarities and Differences.Hack
  • Interesting enough, both couples (Kirito X Asuna and Kite X Aura) share the same first letter in their names.
  • Both Kirito and Kite have this mentality to help others in need of help.
  • Both Kirito and Kite are professional duel wielders. For Kite, some of his blades are invisible.
  • Kirito is passionate in computers while Kite enjoys reading science fiction books.
  • Asuna is a real girl while Aura is an Artificial Intelligence (AI) being.
  • Both Asuna and Aura are deemed to be perfect in one area. For Aura, she is built to be the ultimate AI. In Asuna's case, she is somewhat of a Mary Sue (from fans) because of her beauty and strength.
  • Aura is the keystone in keeping "The World" stable. Without her, the virtual world will collapse. Asuna is just a mere girl with no significant powers over SAO.
  • Hobby-wise: It seems that Asuna enjoys cooking, and I don't know what Aura likes given the fact she is an AI.

This is all I have so far. Thank you for reading and contributing to the discussion.

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