The thing about Sword Art Online is that after the first season you ask yourself… Why would anyone go back into the Matrix after the first Series’ death-machine headgear?
Gun Gale Online’s second episode tries to answer this. We brush against potentially dangerous things every single day. Cars, mishandled, are rolling death machines. But when handled appropriately, they are active transportation devices that take us from one place to another. We downplay the tragedy of car accidents for the immediacy of the vehicle’s usefulness.
Episode two gives us a proper introduction to the backstory of our protag. Ex-Hokkaido resident Karen Kohiruimaki has a bit of a height complex. Being taller than average, with no friends in Tokyo since moving there for college, the idea of slipping away into an imaginary world is appealing. After a nudge from her IRL friend Miyu, explaining the difference between the new technology of the AmuSphere vs the original Nerve Gear. With the new headgear, it has a protective failsafe – if the system monitors anything unusual, it kicks the player out of the game system.
After lots of trial and error creating a character, she finally settles on the pixie-like form that auto-spawns for her character in various games. This lands her in the dark and stormy world of Gun Gale Online. The tutorial scene is great, and while Llenn isn’t completely sold on the game, she is absolutely sold on her character.
Her character begins to gather a reputation for being small and mighty, drawing the attention a female avatar with cross-shaped tattoos on her cheeks, by the name of Pithoui or “Pito”.
The best part of Gun Gale Online is the way that the series effectively transports you to a game that you can tell the protagonist genuinely enjoys.
Also, with the advent of Oculus Rift technology and games like Call of Duty available to play on it, the move to a full-suspension system really doesn’t feel that far away. It feels like it could go live in 2025, for example.
Personally, I’d love to see GGO or ALO as a real life playable Oculus Rift MMO. I don’t think we’re there yet. I don’t think a lot of Rift tech is there yet, and we have a long way until we’re fully immersive in VR gaming. But with this episode, that sort of Matrix-style gameplay really does feel closer than ever.
Watching Karen flip through world after world really does make it clear the potential that the “Seed” has. As open-source software, it really is all about freedom of creation, and what can happen when independent developers each take basic platform and create a world within it to fit their vision.
And, maybe if we’re lucky, we’ll get the DBZ-esque world that she was briefly an alien in. That looks like fun.
- New Characters!
- The "Have We Seen This Before" feeling?
- The simplicity or shallowness required to jump through 37 different worlds just to get an avatar you love, not caring what the actual game is. I get it. I kind of get it. But I don't get it.