Sword Art Online II Ep. 2: I’ll penetrate you with my minigun, and this isn’t my minigun.

Episode 2: Ice Sniper

  • We’re introduced to Sinon in this episode. The show sees it fit to demonstrate her power by hunting a monster in-game. However, there are a couple problems with how this is done.
  • Uh oh, the lizard thing figured out where she is and it’s-a firing its lazor! Sinon better dodge that before it hits her!
  • Yeah, she dodged that so hard she didn’t even have to move a single inch! Wait. Uh.
  • You can make the assumption that she was just outside of the monster’s range, but then you start making things up as you go along. How does the monster not regen its health if you’re not drawing its aggro? Why did it fire a tail laser in the first place if it didn’t know she was there? Do monsters just attack shit for no good reason? The less specific detail you put into worldbuilding, the more you’re forced to assume things about the world, which is a double-edged sword if you’re not careful about how you set up things. Sometimes it works for the better in the case of, say, Knights of Sidonia or Shinsekai Yori. But this? Even the most forgiving interpretation of what’s going on in this scene ends up sounding silly because it’s so far-fetched from the “reality” of GGO and what it aims to show us through its gameplay. Sinon might be a badass sniper, but having her tear through monsters like this with such ease isn’t conductive to showing that she’s anywhere near as badass as she’s being depicted.
  • And why does it keep standing in the exact same position for her to keep firing at its weak spot, even after it gets hit? Is the AI just stupid? If so, then gee, Sinon’s pretty damn strong for fighting it, isn’t she?
  • And so the entire scene is just her firing bullets into the poor monster’s weak spot repeatedly until it dies of boredom, something I wish would happen to me at times.
  • It’s implied by the rare drop that this is the monster that awarded her the signature anti-tank rifle she has. Which sort of explains why she went through so many magazines just to kill a single monster. And maybe you could argue that a single missed shot would give away her position and she would have to start over again, and as such this demonstrates her intense focus as a sniper. But that’s demonstrated by having her fight a monster stupid enough to both sit still and not attack her. That kind of dampens the significance of her rare drop, no?
  • The hell kind of lizard is this? In the middle of a post-apocalyptic wasteland setting?
  • Ah, it’s there to introduce this guy with the chameleon goggles. He doesn’t look beautiful enough to be important, so this feel kind of wasted.
  • This player-killing squad is waiting on a hunting squad to ambush. All the while, they’re doing that infodumping thing again. I’m just getting the feeling that exposition is really hard to translate effectively from light novel to anime. It feels so unnatural for them to be talking to each other about things they should already know by heart. But no, since the audience doesn’t know a thing about them, it unfortunately falls on their shoulders to explain, in every little detail, why they’re there and what they’re gonna do. Surely there are better ways to convey these kinds of details, but I guess it would take more time. Besides, I don’t think any of this is going to matter for the rest of the season anyways. If that’s true, the show just wasted its time shoveling information down our throats that we won’t even be using in the future.
  • They’re like monsters, moving by algorithm. They have no pride.”

  • What makes hunting players more prideful than hunting monster camps? Iunno.
  • Guess who’s the main character in this shot. You have one guess. Hint: They’re so colorful that they’d certainly get targeted first in a shootout.
  • No, seriously. What’s the practicality of Sinon wearing this outfit in a gun MMO? The backgrounds are all shades of brown and grey so wearing pink would make you stand out. What’s more, you’re part of an ambush. Being a sniper doesn’t make this okay, either. Even if you’re so far away from your target, surely such bright and unnatural colors will at least catch their eye.
  • Chameleon-kun channeling the target audience by hitting on Sinon.
  • Which then gets channeled into the camera taking lewd shots of the more revealing bits of her outfit.
  • But hey, it’s Chameleon-kun that’s being the pervert here, not us. Nuh-uh. Nope. We’d never lay our eyes on our precious and pure Sinon-chan like this guy would!
  • Oh, he even knew she was still a student. That’s even creepier.
  • Well, we don’t really know the actual ages/physique of people on GGO because it’s not SAO, but lately people’s physiques in the entire SAO universe tend to mirror their actual physical form. So I’m left with nothing to assume except that these guys are the exact age as they are depicted right now. Which then begs the question: how does she know these people? Does she just end up playing with these sorts of people?
  • And then she pulls her scarf up and scowls in an “Ugh, men.” sort of manner. What class. Such aloof.
  • Oh, you can’t see what the target is wielding? You haven’t seen him before? Must be harmless! Let’s not take him into consideration during our ambush!
  • You can ignore him during the battle.” BUT YOU CAN’T IGNORE DAT ASS.
  • Sinon wants to attack the cloaked guy first but the cowboy dissuades her for… a pretty fair reason. I’m not going to go into specifics about that since I’m almost 1000 words into this and I’m not even halfway through the episode yet, but I do respect that they story is putting more effort into not strawmanning anyone that isn’t the main character. Yes, Sinon will definitely be right about her suspicions later, but at least the story isn’t twisting its own arm trying to prove her comrades wrong.
  • Open-field battlegrounds? Energy-based firearms? We’re starting to turn into Halo here. Except that the game apparently puts actual firearms at a higher quality than energy weapons, which are somehow more suited for hunting monsters. Whatever. Just an excuse to get closer and closer to Kirito becoming Qui-Gon Jesus and mowing down plebians with his lightsaber.
  • Two moons pass.
  • As predicted, the cloaked guy is not what he seems as he easily sidesteps the second bullet.
  • dat cg scope tho
  • Sinon discovers that the cloaked guy was hiding a minigun, which instantly puts their ambush attempt on the backfoot. Interestingly, instead of informing her comrades about the gun, she freezes up. Trauma from a grimdark past, or just stupidity? I’ll know soon enough.
  • You guys sure this isn’t Halo yet?As the guy is mowing people down with his minigun, he makes this half-smirk, which causes the camera to return to Shinon’s surprised but hilarious-looking face. That’s just too much.
  • Does that mean he’s strong enough to smile on the battlefield?

  • What?
  • Really.
  • What?
  • I mean, I have no knowledge on the intricacies of the all-worshiped strengh/smile ratio, but I have never heard of this particular thing until this episode aired? Is there an actual thing that says that strong people smile more? Or is all of this bullshit and I’m grasping at straws trying to justify how stupid this line is?The script seems awfully intent on making this the reason why Sinon now has to kill him.

  • I mean, sure? Why doesn’t anyone else do this, though?
  • We’re not really clued in as to how harsh the death penalty is in GGO. So I’m unsure how serious this circumstance is. What’s the stakes? They’re not playing a pro game because you can apparently log out. So none of these players are pros aiming for monetary reward or ranking. No one is in it for any sort of glory or prestige. Right now, they just want to cut losses. If the risk is too high to be worth the reward, then sure you can talk about ditching the operation.
  • But then this becomes about the guy’s fear of taking hits from virtual guns. Which then presumably ties into how harshly Sinon lambastes him for being a pussy about his computer games. The way she phrases it interests me a bit because there’s a clear difference between getting hit by a minigun in real life as opposed to getting hit by one in GGO. But this isn’t about how it feels to get hit by a gun, this is about the game. I’ve heard that Sinon in RL has a fear of guns and uses GGO as a method of rehabilitation. This is probably why she reacts so badly to him being so visually distressed calling it quits when it is she who truly fears guns. Well, I don’t have much of a problem with that part. It’s character establishment after all and this does a good enough job at doing that with Sinon.
  • The clincher is, though, that this narrow reasoning is enough to rally her comrades into attempting a risky operation that she was trying to get them to do earlier. There’s no way that they would understand where she was coming from AND agree with her plan without her explaining herself.
  • If you have a minigun that lasts longer than four hours, seek immediate medical attention.
  • Then the cowboy dude just goes full Leroy Jenkins and gets his face shot off in the process.
  • Well, he didn’t do that for nothing. He was just trying to throw those stun grenades. Uh.

  • Why did he have to charge forward in the first place? Couldn’t he have just thrown them and taken cover at the same time?
  • Nice guts.” I mean, sure. Yes. His guts spewing on the ground is pretty nice.
  • There’s dust thrown everywhere, so Sinon uses that to parkour her way up a tower to get a good sniping position.
  • He’s strong enough to smile on the battlefield.” Oh boy, here we go with this again.
  • Whaddaya know, the minigun figures out where she is anyways. She better run back and take cover!
  • But they wouldn’t make her do that.
  • Oh no, they won’t.
  • Nope.

  • Yep.
  • Nevermind that she is somehow this distance away from the tower already, but one minigun bullet is apparently enough to sever her leg clean off.
  • You don’t believe me?

  • Bro, do you even SAO?
  • Whoops, still need to fill up the fanservice quota with some of the finest cripple ass around.
  • 360 NOSCOPE
  • 720 NOSCOPE
  • That move was so sexy that the minigun dude is just

aa9rq

2 comments

    1. Ahhhh, that video never gets old.

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