Sword Art Online: Hollow Fragment review – an entertaining action-RPG

Sword Art Online - Hollow Fragment

Based on one of the most popular anime series in years, Sword Art Online imagines a world where players trapped in an MMO must fight for their lives, both virtual and literal, to escape. Hollow Fragment aligns with the first half of the series, but drastically changes the story's direction.

Playing as either the default protagonist, Kirito, or customising an avatar to suit, the task is to battle through 25 levels of the game world uncovering the true mysteries of your imprisonment. Adopting the tropes of an actual MMO, combat is a mix of real-time attacks with an almost rhythmic element. Over 100 party members with their own skills can be recruited from a "friends list", although persistence rather than tactics seems to overcome most challenges.

Original Japanese language with English subtitles means this will appeal most to fans of the anime, but also proves an entertaining action-RPG for on-the-go players of all stripes.

Powered by Guardian.co.ukThis article was written by Matt Kamen, for The Observer on Sunday 24th August 2014 00.05 Europe/London

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