Conjecture about the future of AW
credits – Flere821
Summary – Everyone remember the closing lines of WEB Alicization? I’ll repost the relevant part here:
Right now is only at,
The other side of the Light,
Only Fluctuating slightly.
There’s even MORE connections between AW and UW in Vol15, screw Kawahara for saying there’s no connections between SAO and AW >.>
The nightmare BBers have on the night of installing BB was their Fluctlight being copied, creating a partial Fluctlight in their Neuro-Linker (for normal battles) and another partial Fluctlight in the BB main server (for UAF battles). Every time BBers Accelerate they rely on synchronizing their original Fluctlight with another partial Fluctlight, and the memories are uploaded into the necessary parts at the end of the acceleration. Deletion of memories upon losing all your BPs only affects the original and partial Fluctlight in the Neuro Linker, the main server keeps a copy of your Fluctlight.
To a lesser extent of SAO/AW connection, Black Lotus also has «The Eclipse» attack, though her version is 27 attacks in two seconds. WTF.
White Cosmos is currently portrayed as a God Mode Sue, seeing as she has multiple abilities:
1) Compassionate Resurrection, ignores the 1 hour penalty before revival in UAF (shown in Vol7)
2) White Cosmos is also the only healer in AW prior to Lime Bell, as stated by Lotus.
3) H4XX0R Incarnation destructive ability, able to nuke a district by herself to trick Lotus into believing Red Rider had created WMDs. The downside is WC has no physical-type attacks.
4)Supposedly she never had to use ‘Judgment Blow’ to enforce order in her Legion.
5) More beautiful than KYH.
6) ‘Eye of the Mind’, the ability to see the ‘Heart’s Wound’ that’s the source of a BBer’s power.
And if she is also the leader of the Acceleration Research Society, then she also has the following skills:
7) a Hacker without peer, as Red Rider’s Fluctlight was hacked from the Main Server and attached onto the ISS kit, which gives it the spawning ability.
7a) The creation of Wolfram Cerberus, using the ‘Reincarnation’ skill; the Cerberus II and III was other Fluctlights being grafted onto Cerberus I. Noumi’s Fluctlight is Cerberus III
8) Beast Tamer, as the ARS has multiple Enemy Mobs patrolling their real headquarters (not the building Metatron was parked on).
ARS have gotten so hax some Chinese forumers have guessed if WC isn’t the ARS President then it’s Fluctlight!Kayaba from the end of SAO WEB, back to kick serious ass. Follows up from the hypothesis the Fluctuating Light in the Imperial Palace is actually the 200+YearsOld!UW!Kirito.
«Metatron’s Wings»: the item is a drop from 2nd stage forms of the Bosses in the four Dungeons outside the Imperial Palace. These are equal to if not better than the Seven Treasures. There’s four of these 2nd stage drops, apparently.
Scarlet Rain’s ‘Invincible’ armament is made from 5 parts; Main cannon, Missiles Launcher, Pilot chamber with machine guns, thrusters, and podium legs. Cerberus stole all of them except the podium. Combined with Fluctlight!Noumi, and the collective negative Incarnation gathered by ISS kits, ‘Disaster Mk.II’ makes an appearance. WMGs from elsewhere suggests Vol16 will have ‘Beast’ (Mk I Disaster) returning for a epic showdown with MkII.
Aqua Current’s IS skills include «Phase Trans», the ability to shape her avatar (basically Lotus’ Overdrive, self-affecting IS). Some of the modes shown are ‘Keen’, turning to ice blades for CQC; and ‘Adamite’, Ice barriers for Defence mode. There’s three other modes Lotus doesn’t know the details of.
Cerberus levelled up to Level 5, same as Silver Crow. Cerberus I used the II and III forms’ abilities to fight Crow in the UAF, but he lost. Argon Array then forcibly activated #III and had Noumi
ASSUMING DIRECT CONTROL take over Cerberus’ avatar after that.
Noumi took Rain’s Armaments via Demonic Commandeer enhanced by IS. He turned into «Disaster Mk II» after being cornered by Lotus and co in battle, ‘One Winged Angel’ style.
ISS kit’s true form is a Duel Avatar. Red Rider’s Fluctlight showed up somehow to inform Lotus of some details, like the Avatar had somehow existed in UAF for 50 years consecutively without logging out. According to other Chinese Forumers, 50 years ago in UAF in RL time is back when Crow unleashed Disaster at the Hermes Cord race.
‘Metatron Wings’ is part of Metatron herself, and its special attack «Ektenia» is as strong as Metatron’s physical attack (nowhere near the level of Metatron’s «Trisagion» beam-of-death however). Crow managed to destroy another Crown that enslaved a Enemy with one strike using Ektenia, when fighting Metatron it took him dozens of strikes with Crow’s own strength. After getting into ARS base Metatron took back her wings, saying Crow haven’t met the requirements of keeping and wielding her wings completely – he needs to defeat her in both 1st and 2nd form. Of the «Four Saints» (the other 4 dungeons’ respective bosses, equivalent to Imperial Palace’s «Four Gods»), Metatron at least hasn’t been defeated in both forms yet.
Despite losing the upgraded wings, Metatron is sticking around as a pixie guide of sorts (like the kind in Alfheim Online in SAO) to continuing to help. She dislikes the ‘Mobs’ being called as ‘Enemy’ by the BBers, and demands Crow and the other BLers to call them ‘Beings’. Metatron can also communicate with Beings, and ordered a mid-tier Enemy to leave Crow alone after Crow broke the shackles on it. Though if those are still controlled by ARS not even Metatron can order them around.
Metatron is helping Crow, but is uninterested in fights between ‘small warriors’. Metatron will offer her knowledge, but not her strength for the coming battles.
Chapter ends with Lime Bell and Cyan Pile showing up out of literally nowhere.
Most notable quote of the chapter – Black Vise: “The 2nd Generation Red King is scheduled to retire from Accel World on this day.”
I’m not too interested in the scenes here, so for stuff like AA vs Pard’s fight I won’t summarize it for now.
ARS is really flipping hax however – they turned their base walls and ceilings into «Immortal Objects», and they hacked a Exit Portal in UAF to turn it into the ISS kit main body. WTF, are these guys GMs? >.>
Chapter ends with Lotus and co trying to destroy ISS kit’s man body, but then Red Rider showed up from its shadows.
Bell and Pile landed into ARS’s base when Vice went to retrieve Array from being slaughtered by Pard. Pard tried to keep the gate open, and she succeeded. though in the way there Pard and Argo was separated with Bell and Pile within the darkness.
Metatron’s words can only be heard by Crow, and its attitude as before is like a strict ojou-sama. There’s some mild shipping scenes between the two as Crow grabbed Metatron and tried to hide its glow when they all tried to sneak past Guards, and Metatron is going 100% tsun saying if she wasn’t minimized like she was then she’d burn Crow into ash right there ￼
Oh, and in Crow’s panic to hide he inadvertently agreed to 1,000 years of servitude as a servant to Metatron when they all get out of this O_o The TLers are snarking to hell and back about tsunderes, S&M plays, 1st times and whatnot between the two ￼
We finally found out how ARS made a entire school into Immortal Object territory – they bought the place as their base similar to that of a «Player Owned House», though the scale was much larger than anyone else’s. The only way to break through according to Metatron is with IS, and after seeing Rain being placed on a sacrificial marble altar from a window Crow + 2 tried to break through. On the verge of Bad End, Bell got a Deus ex Machina and unlocked IS of her own via “Power of Friendship (TM)” and they got through >.>
At that point Vise had crucified Rain, similar to what happened with Blossom when Falcon first went berserk and created Disaster. Crow was pissed, but this time instead of charging right ahead like he was ‘CD 6th Gen’ he stood his ground and declared he’ll be taking Rain back. Array ambushed him from the roof, and Crow deflected the lasers. Pard was still hounding Array in a fight at that point, with Array complaining is Pard actually a cat or a dog. Array also told Vise she better be paid double, no triple for work that he said was only ‘give covering fire and then run like hell’ that turned out to be this clusterfrak.
Metatron gave her wings to Crow once again, with Crow taking combat aid instead of info aid now – as while in wings form Metatron can’t communicate with Crow. More flags between the two with Crow thanking Metatron for her help and Metatron replying (tsun-fully – yes, that’s not a word, but I’ve got nothing better ￼) he should save that until after everyone is saved.
Before the chapter ends, another Avatar drops out of the sky to fight for ARS; Wolfram Cerberus, having replicated Crow’s flying ability.
Roll: ARS Side
Black Vise (Lv8?)
Argon Array (Lv8?)
Wolfram Cerberus (Lv5, according to spoilers)
Red & Black alliance
Blood Leopard (Lv8)
Silver Crow (Lv5, + Metatron Wings)
Cyan Pile (Lv5)
Lime Bell (Lv5, half conscious after over-using IS)
Plot Armor (Lv: EX)
White Cosmos is unlikely to be a ‘Originator’ (kanji read as ‘the first Hundred Players’) – going by the dates, the time when Cosmos joined BB is off by one year. Of the ‘Pure Colour’ Kings, only Blue Knight and Green Grande are near 100% sure to be Originators in Lotus’ POV.
In the Games Menu of a Level 9, there’s a list of slots that needs to be filled by the names of other Level 9s. In Lotus’, the name ‘Red Rider’ is right there filling up one slot, so she things the Rider in front of her can’t be real. Nonetheless, everything about him right then fits the guy as she knew him. Raker and Current have almost as much experience as Lotus dealing with the Red King, but they’re leaving the choice to Lotus.
Lotus confronted Rider, saying he should have already been killed by her. Rider snarked saying that was the case, he was offed by something like being sent from Heaven to Hell when the embrace from the standoffish beauty he didn’t expect ended up taking his life. This time, compared to when Yellow Radio showed a video and led to KYH going into a Zero-Fill, this time KYH didn’t faint.
Rider confirmed he was more like a ghost than a BBer that found a way to re-install BB. KYH commented well good thing they have a Miko (Ardor Maiden) on hand to perform a exorcism, though as her responsibility as the one that killed him KYH will listen to any grudges Rider have – after all, he has the right to do so after what she done. Rider responded the real reason why he showed up was to know the true reason why KYH wanted his head in particular, even if she had to use a sneak attack to do so – and he already found out by that point.
(Referring to previous volumes’ plot, how Cosmos tricked KYH into believing Rider’s ‘Arms Creation’ skill made WMDs)
At that point however the ‘Pure’ Red of Riders have begun to be encroached by the ISS kit, starting from the legs. Rider scowled, saying he had expected another 3 mins before that happened to him. As he got darkened (Flere note: well, guess that Angra Mainyu comparison from me earlier was quite apt… we’re getting Rider Alter here) Rider told Lotus they’re going to have to talk after the battle; and this time, Lotus needs to win, as overwhelmingly as possible, as the more energy the ISS kit is forced to use up in the fight the longer he’ll be able to keep his consciousness.
Rider got fully consumed, and his killing intent surpassed even Magenta Scissors’ from before. While KYH and others was momentarily stunned by that aura, Rider quick-drawed his guns in less than a second and aimed those at the girls. Aaand cue scene break ￼
Over at Crow’s end, Cerberus told him his purpose as a BBer, to collect Burst Points using the level difference (Lv1 beating much higher opponents) was almost complete; in just a bit longer, ‘Cerberus I’ will be erased from AW. He could no longer fight purely for sportsmanship in battles any more, no matter how much Crow valued their rivalry.
Fighting is about to begin, with Cerberus vs Crow, Array vs Pard, and Pile + Bell vs a one-handed Vise – Vise needs to use one hand to keep Rain restrained. According to Pard, both Array and Vise are confirmed to be Level 8. Though judging things by Levels here was pointless, seeing as both Vise and Array have been Lv8 for much longer than Pard with much more Extra Skills, and Cerberus’ own ability makes him hits much harder than his Level. Before the fight starts here, yet another Scene Break ￼
Back to ‘Red VS Black’. Rider’s guns, named ‘Helios’ and ‘Eos’ for right and left hand’s respectively, has six shots each. Lotus and others managed to deflect all 12 shots fired in less than 2 seconds, but only Lotus avoided taking damage. Rider also has a Skill named ‘Auto Reload’, and his arms has gadgets to reload his guns in only 2 seconds. Rider’s speed attacks were such that Blue-type avatars was shot down before even coming close, and he can kill Green-type avatars using only grazing damage past their defenses.
The battle started with both sides only 20m away from each other however, so Lotus reached him without trouble. Due to KYH’s own guilt however, her blade backed by her ‘Terminate Sword’ ability (the one where she OHK anything with less stat than her blades) instead destroyed Rider’s left shoulder and not his unarmoured neck. Rider’s left arm was neutralized, but while under the ISS control Rider can’t feel pain and directed Helios at Lotus. Rider shot 6 times at Lotus’ chest armour, which was barely deflected with her left arm.
While not in Zero-Fill, KYH still hesitated in attacking for the same reasons; she loathed herself for doing so, especially after promising Haru she won’t be held back by the past anymore. Rider reloaded his Helios gun, and ISS kit repaired his left arm by that point too. KYH felt with Rider’s speed she was more like fighting a Blue-type avatar than a Red one. Lotus then remembered Haru’s training against guns, and tried to read the shot patterns via the avatar and not by the gun barrel. (Flere note: … wasn’t she the one that told that to Haru to begin with? >.>)
Lotus did so, and avoided the incoming bullets with only grazing damage. Rider brought up his guns for physical defence, but was once again struck by ‘Death by Embracing’. Rider was bisected, but his torso still attempted to shoot Lotus. Lotus was immobilized in the aftermath of her attack can’t dodge, but Current’s attack blinded Rider at the last moment. Maiden then shot a flaming arrow, pinning down Rider’s right arm. Rider’s left was still functional however, and tried to shoot Lotus again. Raker shot in using her booster and caved in Rider’s chest, buying some time for Lotus. Lotus recovered, and then used her leg’s blade to behead Rider. Rider’s avatar shattered into pieces afterwards.
The fight’s over, and KYH said this Rider was a fake; Rider had pride in his gun skills, and he would have gone down standing his ground while shooting, rather than defend himself physically. Also, the ISS kit replicated Rider’s shooting skills, but not his actual power; this Rider’s attack lacked the destructiveness the real Rider had. Current pointed out the Rider before darkening talked like the real deal, and Lotus admitted that; however she still felt there was something off, and her ‘Level 9 kill count’ didn’t increase.
Rider’s voice came from behind them, saying it’d be incredible if it did increase; Lotus can stay here to farm kills on him, and clear Accel World that way if it did work. The girls whirled around to find Rider emerging from the ISS kit core once more, and back to his Pure Red colouring. Rider approached them casually, saying while he was indeed the true ‘Red Rider’ from a certain point of view, at the same time he was also a undeniable fake. It was something Lotus and others could only understand after fighting him, and he apologized for shooting at them. Lotus demanded a explanation, but Rider waved it off, only saying he was revived in a limited state by another BBer; merely a spare part for that BBer’s own ends. He didn’t come back of his own will due to a grudge. From Rider’s words, KYH found if someone was dumb enough to spend all their points in a Item Shop down to zero they won’t be removed from BB – they have to lose a battle at that state for that to happen. Nevertheless, Rider’s situation meant that loophole won’t work for him, as even with points his Loss made him retire.
Rider then explicitly said he’s the copy of the Original kid’s soul which spawned Red Rider (Flere note: Why hello there iron-clad confirmation of AW+SAO connection…), so technically he’s a zombie. The real kid would have lost all his AW memories and went on in life like a normal student. After being revived however, he was anchored inside the ISS kit core.
(Flere note: To expand on his earlier ‘true yet fake Rider’ comment, this is ‘Red Rider’ the person/Fluctlight, ie the ‘true him’ that was forcibly retired from AW. However as a partial Fluctlight he’s also a ‘fake’, as he’s not ‘Red Rider the Duel Avatar of BrainBurst2039’ or the Original kid whose Heart’s Wound created Red Rider. Fluctlight =/= Duel Avatar, at least not enough for the Game System to count it as a kill or get Burst Points)
Fuuko murmured rather than being called ‘Revival’ skill, it would be better called ‘Necromancy’; she also asked why would someone do this. Rider said it’s to make use of his ‘Arms Creation’ skill. He confirmed the ISS kits was due to him, though Rider said the design and specs of those things wasn’t up to him; he was effectively isolated within the core, and it was only when the core need to sleep for regeneration that Rider’s consciousness could break free momentarily. Back in Ch2 when the girls first got there they dealt a bit of damage to the core already, allowing Rider to show up. Rider confirmed if the core healed enough he’ll be after their lives again, and he apologized for that. While the Revival didn’t bring him back to his full power, his existence was stable enough to chat for a bit longer.
While Lotus was troubled and not know what to ask first, Karen asked what’s the ISS core exactly. Rider replied it’s most likely a Duel Avatar. Though when isolated Rider can’t feel the passage of time, the ISS core would have felt time passing by over the last 50 years in UAF – 2 weeks IRL. KYH wondered just how could a Duel Avatar like the ISS core exist, having no limbs, but considering it’s the ARS who created the Chrome Disaster, broke the Hermes Cord race, and tamed Archangel Metatron it wouldn’t be impossible.
Lotus says they’re there to destroy the core, no matter even if that’s a Duel Avatar – or even if his existence depended on it. Rider replied he won’t ask them to leave and spare him either. He’s tired of being a zombie, and if it’s Lotus than she should be strong enough to end him. Rider says he has no idea what the Core is capable of, except its brutally strong; if they don’t go all out right from the start, they won’t win.
Finally, Karen asked Rider if the core dies would the smaller ISS kits disappear; Rider replied no, they won’t. Ash Roller would still be infected after the core’s gone. Maiden and KYH was shocked, but Karen decided if the mental pollution was gone than it’ll do for the time; they can get rid of the ISS kit later. Maiden agreed, saying even if it’ll take some time she’ll do it; but she was interrupted by Rider:
“No need to fret, lil darling. The things I made, I’ll take responsibility to neutralize them.”
He made safeties on all of his works, and he could remotely detonate all the ISS kits if he has to – if there’s no longer a core to block his access, anyway. KYH asks if that’s case even without his crest on the ISS kits and he didn’t design the the kits, and Rider replied as long as it was made by him there’ll be the safeties.
“Even after becoming a zombie, I still have this much honour left in me.”
After that declaration, Rider gave a thumbs up and turned his back to the girls to head back to the ISS core. KYH really wanted to ask him did he really feel no hatred towards her for killing him using a sneak attack, or for breaking apart the Legion he created – but KYH understood that’s just words to soothe her own guilt. Instead, Lotus asked how did Rider find out about the truth behind her attack, that she didn’t kill him simply because of her obsession for Level 10?
Rider stopped his steps, and replied it’s more of a guess but he’s certain of his conclusion. He can’t remember who zombified him, but that person had to be there on the 1st Pure Kings’ Summit; there’s no way Lotus killed him and he just happens to be revived later, all by chance. This was planned from the start, and there’s only one person among the Kings that could persuade the Black King to off the Red King, AND has the ability to reduce the Red King into a puppet. Not stated explicitly, but it’s obvious from the narrative White Cosmos was responsible and painted as the ‘Final Boss’.
Rider glanced back at the girls, and said from here onward they will have to find out the truth for themselves. He said farewell to them, and tell them to pass it on to the last member of the Four Elements as well – named ‘Paradoxical Existence’ in Kanji, read as ‘Anomaly’. Finally, Red Rider told them to pass on a message to the two from Prominence that was with KYH, that inherited his will:
“Thanks, and please take care of the rest for me”.
(Flere note: there’s so much TL comments in this last section gushing how much of a man/King Red Rider is, but while I’m inclined to agree I’m not going to translate those ￼)
Rider gave them a informal salute with his fingers shaped together like a gun, and he went back inside the ISS kit core. KYH felt very emotional at his passing, even if she doesn’t know what emotions those were exactly. The girls prepared to destroy the core, no matter if he/she was aiding the ARS willingly or not, but then the entire room was filled with the Incarnation light (OverRay), pulsing blood red. Fuuko held off the waves of light using her own area-Incarnation; while positive Incarnation are warm and gives courage, negative Incarnation chills people to the bone and brings them despair. The rest of the girls enveloped themselves with IS light as well to defend themselves.
Lotus ordered them all to circle around and attack the core from behind, but then the core shot out a Dark Shot that was closer to Metatron’s Trisagion than the bullets by normal Duel Avatars, a stream of void that rushed towards them.
Fights started over where Crow is. Crow attacked with Laser Sword, but Cerberus blocked it using a IS armor with purple glow. Cerberus also learned IS system, even though it’s only been 8 days since he showed in up in AW. He gives a confirmation that Cerberus I-III are all different persons / Duel Avatars being pieced together. The ability to steal other people’s skills from II is named ‘Wolf Down’.
The IS skill Cerberus is using are III’s. Crow can see that particular IS was born from negative thoughts, and asked Cerberus to stop – using that means parts of himself will be dragged into the darkness. Cerberus replies he knows that, as right then he can feel himself being erased – but like how Crow is fighting for something he can’t give up no matter what (ie, Niko), Cerberus is in a similar situation.
Crow admitted that he’s the one without the resolve to fight with his earlier words – now that they’re in a battle the only thing left is to fight and win. Crow tried to throw Cerberus, but since Cerberus could fly it got countered and Cerberus instead tried to crush Crow in his arms. Wolf Down stealing something is like filling a jug however, after it’s used up that’s it. After Cerberus flew in counter to Crow he emptied out his flight ability.
Crow got hit down into yellow HP bar, and he can’t hit back at Cerberus. However Crow told him Cerberus made a wrong choice in using a restraining skill that doesn’t kill his opponent fast enough, and shot a Laser Javelin at Niko’s restraints. Vise was fighting Pile so his free hand couldn’t block Crow’s attack, and he lost half of the binds on Niko.
Array ordered Cerberus to stop messing around, so he tried to turn Crow away and can’t hit Niko. Crow managed to twist out of the hold, and the two of them entered melee combat with Crow using «Aerial Combo». Cerberus’ IS isn’t his own so he can’t wield it with the same speed and skill as Crow; III’s IS only shows up as a reflexive defence against other IS. After a furious exchange of hits, Crow finally managed to land a clean hit and took down Cerberus.
While Cerberus is flat on the ground he confessed he was just as obsessed with winning as Crow was, when he lost that time he was angry as well. When Cerberus II showed up it was because #I went into Zero Fill and gave up control. This time however Cerberus lost even after using the others’ skills, and he doesn’t feel bad.
Cerberus also said as a Burst Linker (Flere note: note that he says “Burst Linker”, not “Brain Burst Player” like the rest of ARS), he can’t defy ARS. The only thing he can choose is how to end his life as a Burst Linker however, and he had adjusted his points so he only has 10 BP left. Cerberus asked Crow to take him away to the edge of AW and kill him there, as it’s the only way to save Niko – and Cerberus chose to die by Crow’s hand instead of being transformed into something else. Cerberus is scheduled to die today at that altar.
Array then revealed Cerberus’ creation was due to ARS President’s skill «Reincarnation», but as impressive as it was if #I wasn’t in Zero Fill he could still remain in control. Cerberus knew if he showed up here he has a high chance of fulfilling ARS’s goal, but as his final wish he wanted to fight Crow. Crow said he will find a way to save everyone, Rain, Ash Roller, and even Cerberus.
Array however then said it’s time to show them all.
“There doesn’t exist a single way to save everyone in this world. Because from the very beginning there’s no such thing as salvation in the world. There exists only hatred, conflict, betrayal, beguiling, ravaging, wails, despair, and so on, so forth. Now, let me teach you kids the true cruelty of Accel World…”
…Cerberus Number Three – Activate.”
Cerberus’ main visor closed for good, his final words urging Crow to flee and he’ll do his best to hold off #III’s awakening. Unlike #II’s visor light being red, this time III’s visor colour is the same purple as Cerberus’ earlier IS. Crow got raked by Cerberus’ IS claws, and Crow felt like he had felt that sensation before.
III then spoke, confirming Crow’s fears that Noumi’s back.
Lotus and co barely escaped the Trisagion-sized attack from ISS core, and it ripped a hole in the building. The Core is trying to destroy the entire place so the portal will stay standing in its coordinates but nobody can reach it. The girls decided to take it down, and Maiden is going to use her IS technique she trained up for use against large opponents, though she needs 2 minutes’ casting time. Lotus and others went to by time, and Lotus managed to get close enough to use Vorpal Strike and do some damage. The Dark Shots she dodged as she approached has a homing ability however, and almost killed her as they attacked from behind. Raker managed to push Lotus out of the way, but she got her legs blasted away.
Current then demonstrated Phase Trans, Keen mode to attack. Raker also used her «Swirl Sway» whirlwind shield, though it’s not purely a defence technique. the tornado ripped at the ISS core. Finally, Lotus demonstrated «The Eclipse». The narrative notes this was Graphite Edge’s move, 27 attacks in two seconds. In terms of pure attack times however Lotus’ Lv4 Special attack «Death by Barraging» is superior, with hundreds of attacks in a few seconds. IS relies on mental imagery however, and Death by Barraging relies on system assist so Lotus used the Eclipse.
After all these huge moves, they still need another minute before Maiden is ready. ISS Core then went into ‘second form’ and summoned two tentacle appendages for CQC. Lotus went into Overdrive Mode Green and Current went into Adamite form in order to defend themselves, as the Core was too fast. The impact was worse than when Lotus fought Byakko of the Four Gods, and the negative IS affected her mind. Lotus’ two legs got driven into the marble floor, and Current lost her left hand and all her armour.
30 seconds left before Maiden is ready, and the Core is still going strong; it’s like it has infinite IS/willpower available to it. The core then shot a Trisagion-sized beam at Raker, but Raker can’t dodge since if she does it’ll hit Maiden. Raker held her ground to try and tank the hit, even though just at tanking half the core’s full power each both Lotus and Current was heavily wounded. Raker managed to hold off the attack, using what’s the equivalent of Aikido in IS techniques and redirecting the beam into the ceiling. The narrative explicitly says this is fuelled by the bond and “power of love” between Raker and Maiden ￼
Lotus and Current managed to get some breath back, and then went back to attacking the core.
Noumi, Dusk Taker, revealed himself to be Cerberus III. His
rage inducing slimy attitude was such none of the trio who knew him present can deny this guy acts exactly like the real deal. Bell then pointed out like #II was a copy #III here is also one, seeing as the real Noumi has lost his memory. They figured out instead of ‘erasing’ someone’s memory when they lose all BPs, it’s more correct to say it was ‘taken away’ into the main server. Then someone in ARS managed to extract these memories from the BB main server somehow.
With #III’s conversation however, the four of them had been using their real names to talk with. It’s for sure that ARS now knows the trio’s RW details and could probably go PK them IRL if they wished to. Array then ordered #III to get serious and taken them all down.
Even with the switch from #I to #III, it doesn’t change how the Duel Avatar still only had 10 BPs left. Crow thought he can still win. Vise then pulled out «Octahedral Isolation», locking all of ARS and Niko away. Everyone on Crow’s side tried to break through, but didn’t manage to do so even with IS. It’s like a conceptual weapon of ‘Rejection’ pulled to the limit.
Noumi then said it’s time for Haru and others to start paying him back, and then moved towards Niko. Everyone redoubled their efforts to break through, with Crow shouting come out and face him, he’s willing for a fight.
Noumi then used Demonic Commandeer on Niko, with tentacles of sticky light burrowing into Niko’s petite avatar through any gap they can find.
Back to Lotus and others fighting the ISS core, Lotus was thinking it doesn’t matter if the core had unlimited negative thoughts backing it up, she has unlimited positive thoughts from all her time with Haru and everyone else in her Legion. The TLer notes Kawahara has got the anime and LN mixed up, that scene at the end of AW anime with KYh and Fuuko meeting had its location written wrong.
With the three girls’ powers combined, they managed to weather through the core’s attack. As those three collapsed from exhaustion Maiden was ready to counterattack. Her inferno turned the stage around the Core into magma, and since the core was anchored to the portal it can’t flee. The extreme heat was such any attack from the core got evaporated before it could be carried out.
While Maiden needs 4x the current preparation to even burn Genbu of the Four Gods into nothingness, they feel if they managed the prep time they can pull it off. The TLer snarks that the girls are getting over ambitious, they wants to kill one of the Four Gods instead of just holding it off long enough to rescue Graphite Edge. The other girls there has half a mind to stop Maiden’s attack, as this is a ‘Area attack of harmful/negative IS’, magnifying her own thoughts of wanting to harm others. This could come back and devour Maiden’s own heart. Nonetheless, they need to destroy the ISS core so they let her continue.
From the falling apart core, a thin beam of red light reached out like a infrared targeting beam. That beam held such malice it floored Lotus, Current and Raker simply with its presence, and was part of the manifestation of all the gathered negative IS of Accel World.
Crow kept bashing on Vise’s wall, to the point his silver fist is falling apart. The wall is like it severed the spatial dimensions between the two sides. Bell tried to calm Crow down, but he wouldn’t listen; it took a silent admonition from the Metatron Wings to snap Crow out of it. (TLers’ note: LAWL Metatron is stealing the place of ‘main haremette’ xD)
After thinking it through and comparing it with Green Grande’s «Parsec Wall», Crow ordered them to attack the corners instead of the flat surfaces. When Pard tried to bite however the barrier turned so all their attacks would hit the surface instead. One by one Niko’s Armaments are being swallowed as a orb of light by #III. Crow then flew Pile up to the top of the barrier, and Pile used «Spiral Gravity Driver» to hit the apex of the defence. Vise only then took notice of the attacks on his defence, and the barrier started spinning in the opposite direction of Pile’s attack. Cracks started to form when Pile poured his IS into his attack, and then Crow did as well. (TLer note: No Homo)
Vise’s barrier broke, and the two of them charged in as Noumi ate a fourth orb. Array attacked, and while Crow deflected two lasers another two tore into Pile. Pile’s attack missed #III by half a metre due to that. Array tried to shoot them again, but Pard charged in and tackled Array. Crow shouted “Niko!” in such a way TLers snarked “right, shout all you want, as long as it’s not her full name ARS aren’t going to find out her RL info…”, then Crow tore the connection between #III and Niko with a IS-backed arm. The 2nd Red King’s final armament barely managed to be kept by its original owner.
Niko then woke up, and her IS aura blasted Crow away. The 2nd Red King in her full glory blazed out her displeasure, and her eyes was burning white. Even after losing most of her Armaments and forcibly pushed into Zero Fill state for 40mins+, Niko was still ready for a fight and burning her opponents until not even ashes remain.
Noumi started cackling, saying that the power of a King was truly amazing; just four of Rain’s armament took up slots for three whole BBer’s worth of storage space. This was what he lived for, to be able to take from others and make their hard-earned strength into his own. Crow noted they need to get Maiden to come and exorcise Noumi soon.
Rain said Noumi was as twisted as the rumours said, but there’s no way he could use her «Invincible» well as he lacked the heart to do so. Noumi spurned that opinion and said he’ll show her that ‘hearts’ have no meaning in both the RW or AW, except loyalty to himself. He then pressed the buttons to equip the 4 Armaments.
The earlier spoilers was wrong, Noumi managed to steal the podium legs but didn’t get the missile launchers. The entire set was warped into fitting Noumi’s preferences. Noumi started fighting Crow and others, and Crow kept an eye out on for Vise and Array. While those two said they’ll stay out of this fight and Vise had lost both his right side limbs as a result of barriers breaking, they could still be a menace if they wished to.
Metatron warned Crow, and Crow thought it was referring to the 15cm cannon Noumi was about to fire. Instead, it was the thin red light coming from the ISS core. The light entered into Noumi, and it sounded like he was being eaten alive by tentacles. Array was stunned, saying something about an achievement they didn’t expect and that was something not even the ARS President had foreseen. In the furore, Crow and Rain did some damage to #III and blasted him into a building.
Noumi realized that ARS had never planned on helping him for his revenge, and was just using him. Array said they did plan on let him have his revenge, and wasn’t planning on screwing him over until after that. However due to unforeseen circumstances he’s going to have to die now.
Vise advised Crow and others they better run while they still can; the monster that was about to be born is way out of their league to handle. Vise and Array then fled using shadow travel. Noumi’s strength was then taken away by something else. Crow and Rain tried to attack him again, but was blocked by a black wave of IS. Noumi was devoured, with the exact phrase from when the Fluctlights broke down after Eugeo killed the attempted-rapist**. TLers note this is confirmation that copies of previous Duel Avatars are indeed Fluctlights.
The Invincible morphed and writhed, transforming into a tall demon of metal with scythe-like hands. It also grew a head to match.
At the end of this volume, Crow realized ARS had created the ‘Armour of Diaster – Mk II’.
==Volume 15 end==
(Tus note: the reference to Eugeo the rapist-killer talks about a scene in the original web novel of Sword Art Online. Upon having his hands sliced off, Raios suffered a mental breakdown due to a contradiction between the law he must obey versus his need for self-preservation.)
credits – Mixed Milkshake
Starts with a monologue from Magenta Scissor, basically about how the NegaNeb members are all stronger then her in various ways. She finally accepts the inevitable and decides to wait for the destruction of the main body of ISS.
Then we have Haruyuki + Chiyu + Taku + Niko + Pard-san face off against Disaster Armour Mk II. Haruyuki tried to avoid the cannon strikes and get close for melee combat, Metatron told Haru to take flight with the other four, a fraction of a second before MK II fired a Dark Shot comparable in strength with Metatron’s laser (aka Trisagion). The Dark Shot completely blew away the school building which was supposed to be an indestructible private property.
We then have a change of viewpoint to Kuroyukihime. After they defeated the ISS main body, Kuroyukihime was distracted by the massive Dark Shot in the distance, the ISS main body took this opening and with the last of its strength fired off a node to try to infect Kuroyukihime. Kuroyukihime and the Elements are all too beat up to react in time. While being infected, Kuroyukihime synchronised her sight with Disaster Armour Mk II which allowed her to verify that Niko has been rescued and was fighting alongside Haruyuki. Just when the infection process was about to complete, the ghost of Red Rider kept his promise and engaged the safety on all ISS nodes, rendering them useless. (This means Rin/Ash is saved as well) Kuroyukihime finished ISS main body off but the death marker didn’t appear. The player who was the ISS main body has lost all points and has retired from the accelerated world. As to why someone would stay at the same spot in the accelerated world for years with only a handful of points remained a mystery. Kuroyukihime leaves with the Elements to help Haruyuki.
Back to the battle against Disaster Armour Mk II. Haruyuki worked out the recharge time for Mk II’s main cannon to be sixty seconds. Even with everyone’s strongest attacks aimed at the weakest target -the eyeball – they were still unable to break it. Then Chiyu came along, gave it a whack and busted it…….
With this opening, Chiyu used her Citron Call Mode II to take back the stolen components. Chiyu’s Citron Call needs ten seconds to take effect, when there was only two seconds left, Mk II suddenly changed into tank mode (Dreadnought mode) and charged at the team, breaking off Chiyu’s Citron Call. Chiyu runs off to recharge her SP Gauge with Taku as bodyguard. Mk II fires the recharged cannon again, Haruyuki didn’t notice that there was only one shot and the second shot grazed his wings, pinning him to the ground. Apparently Mk II can learn in battle just as the original Disaster could. Mk II grabbed Haruyuki and Niko and bashed them against each other continuously to shave off their HP. Their HP dropped to merely ten percent, Pard-san used her Bloodshed Cannon, sacrificed herself to create an opening. Haruyuki exceeded his limits yet again, gaining another pair of wings from Metatron. Now with six wings, Haruyuki took flight with the Incarnate Ability Light Speed, dragging Mk II and Niko with him. He planned to drop all three of them from a certain height and perish together but Mk II released them when Haruyuki reached five hundred meters. Haruyuki grabbed on Niko to watch Mk II getting crippled from the fall, only to be met by a close range Dark Shot. Just as the Dark Shot was about hit, Haruyuki heard a sound similar to the acceleration noise and the whole accelerated world came to a standstill.
There’s a way to accelerate a further one thousand times in the accelerated world.
Haruyuki watched the whole world from above with Metatron. He noticed bright points of lights which represents the social camera from which the world was constructed from, there was only one place without these cameras — the Imperial City. Haruyuki wonders how the Imperial City was designed without any camera data. Haruyuki also find the world split into three layers, each representing one of the acceleration games (Accel Assault 2038, Brain Burst 2039, Cosmos Corrupt 2040). The other two games have long since terminated. Metatron told Haruyuki how there was also an Imperial City in both of these worlds along with accelerators and Enemies and how there was no lights too in the other Imperial Cities. Metatron believes the goal of the designer of these games is to find someone who will eventually conquer the Imperial City and obtain the seventh star, The Fluctuating Light. Metatron had followed her commands for the past seven thousands years to fight against Burst Linker who only challenge her once every few decades. In the end Metatron decided to go against her programming and challenge the Imperial City with Haruyuki to find out about the reason for her existence. (Metatron refers to herself as ‘we’, hinting that other Enemies of similar rank may also have a sense of self and may also have deviated from their programming over time.)
Metatron also confirmed that the one who defeated her first and took The Luminary was the White King, White Cosmos. She also confirmed that The Luminary has the power to control Enemies.
Metatron offered her aid in battle against Mk II in exchange for what Haruyuki knows about the inside of the Imperial City. Metatron and Haruyuki both shed the shell protecting their souls to completely merge ♂♀ together. Their thoughts , feelings and life are completely joined together. Returning back to the battle, Hauyuki blocked the Dark Shot with one wave of his hand, his HP instantly refilled and gained six more bars of HP,( … Even the four sacred beasts only had five…) although three were depleted to block that Dark Shot. Haruyuki relaxed after blocking that attack but Mk II used the thrusters component to close the distance to use Dark Blow. Due to the damages earlier, Haruyuki’s wings didn’t react fast enough to dodge.
Metatron used her laser (aka Trisagion) to counter the Dark Blow, Metatron’s laser comes from the solar energy she absorbs, Haruyuki can’t replicate that, she could only use her soul as a substitute energy source. As both Metatron’s life force and their link fade away, her wings disappear from Haruyuki’s back. In sadness and anger, Haruyuki expends all the power he has and the power Metatron left him to strike down Mk II. Chiyu successfully activates her Special Attack to take back three of the four stolen components of Invincible, just when the last component was about to be recovered, Mk II disappeared without a trace. Apparently Black Vise and Argon Array pulled Wolfram Cerberus’ cable in the real world. Mk II managed to survive on that last component and Wolfram Cerberus. The overuse of Incarnation attracted a large group of Enemies, Haruyuki was unable to fly due to damages. Kuroyukihime and the Elements arrive just in time to help, they return back to the real world.
Haru and co. returns to real world and confirmed that Rin is ok. A battle was started to serve as a way to meet and discuss the events. After exchanging information regarding the two battlefronts, a masked female spectator avatar appeared. She stated that AA2038 ended due to endless conflict, CC2040 ended due to lack of player hostility and that BB2039 was going to end up just like those two other games. Kuroyukihime exposed the avatar’s identity as the White King, White Cosmos, president of the Acceleration Research Society and angrily denied the White Cosmos’ justification of the spread of the ISS kits. Learning that White Cosmos was the mastermind behind everything, Niko taunts the White King. White Cosmos states that she will accept a Battle Royale challenge right now if they want. The White King was using a spectator avatar incapable of using any special attacks or abilities, indicating she is perfectly confident at defeating the two Kings (Black Lotus and Scarlet Rain) and eight other Burst Linkers (Blood Leopard, Sky Raker, Aqua Current, Ardor Maiden, Silver Crow, Cyan Pile, Lime Bell and Ash Roller) with nothing but Incarnation Attacks. Kuroyukihime held herself back from attacking, believing the confrontation to be too soon. She declared that she will one day utterly destroy White Cosmos along with the fear she has been spreading. White Cosmos praised Kuroyukihime on her growth and said she will now take a brief nap and will see them again in the future.
After that we have Haruyuki and co. visit stalls and attractions across the cultural festival (History of the place they live, Animal Cloth Sexy Version all over again etc.) . Haruyuki returned home after that and decided to head to the Unlimited Neutral Field as he mourned the loss of Metatron. While in the Unlimited Neutral Field, a mysterious voice claiming to be Metatron’s comrade gave Haruyuki the hints necessary for him to bring back Metatron using Incarnation. Metatron was revived but without the completely broken stat boosts. She scolded Haruyuki for his lack of manners at the very end.
== Volume 16 end ==
-Kuroyukihime suspects that reaching Lv 10 would only grant an audience with the creator of the game, clearing the game still require the Imperial City to be conquered.
-The Green King, Green Grandee may be able to reach ‘Highest Level’, the state where a player accelerates one further time while in the Accelerated World and is able to see all three worlds. Metatron used the ability to show Haruyuki the other two worlds, Green Grandee might have also saw the other two world in this fashion.
-Magenta Scissor’s words at the start of the novel hints at her reappearance some time in the future.
-Metatron has chosen Haruyuki as her partner, there may very well be other Legend Ranked Enemies who have partnered up with Burst Linkers (Green Grandee could be one of them)
-Chiyu may very well be the strongest player to date…. she one-hit downed Mk II when the others couldn’t even faze it……
-Like how some BBers have titles (eg Graphite Edge with his ‘Anomaly/Paradoxical Existence’) White Cosmos’ title is ‘Transient Eternity’. There may be a retcon/mistake in the narrative as KYH remembers Cosmos’ IS technique to be extremely powerful but she didn’t connect it to Cosmos’ demonstration with Red Rider’s guns.
-It’s practically confirmed AW is going for a Metatron x Haru pairing; Haru has outright admitted he like/loves her, which is further than what he felt to other girls so far.
-Oh, and after Haru caressing the smaller avatar version of Metatron to try and see if it wasn’t his mind playing tricks on him, Metatron smacked him for touching her that way and added another 500 years onto Haru’s servitude. (reference to events in earlier volumes)
-This is probably one of the fastest conversion from ‘Tsun’ to ‘Dere’ I have ever seen – two volumes in total for Metatron to warm up to Haru. The fact Haru broke down in tears of happiness that she’s still alive helped too. It has gotten to the point that Metatron said she’d *cough* reward *cough* him for his efforts if it wasn’t for the fact her form is kinda limited at that moment
-On a side note, Haru still have the 2-winged version of Metatron Wings as well.
-The voice that spoke to Haru identified herself as “-terasu.” Only known JP name that fits the bill is ‘Amaterasu.’
-Magenta Scissor’s RL Name is Odagiri Rui(srsly Kawahara?,she instead of Vise or Cerberus?,not that i mind though btw).
-It is revealed that the Avatar creation nightmare isn’t the Brain Burst program feeding information, but the person feeding information into it.It is the Person who installed Brain Burst that showed the nightmare not the Brain Burst Program itself.Burst Linkers are all born using Incarnation from day one.
-On the subject of Duel Avatar’s color, some of the desires that creates a Duel Avatar were revealed:
Blue: The desire for strength to overcome obstacles
Red: The desire for strength to reach distant places
Green: The desire for strength to protect others
Metal: The desire for walls to protect one’s heart
When you look at it this way, Blood Leopard makes perfect sense as a red Avatar – animals naturally have the power to reach further distances more quickly.
-To create a Legion you have to take a ‘Legion Master Quest’ from a statue NPC in Ikebukuro.(i dont know what the quest end goal is though, since it’s shown for the first time in the current chapters of DMG, the quest is not finished yet to my knowledge and there’s probably more than one quest.) The quest involves guarding four eggs from Lesser Type Enemies. Because the task requires *simultaneously* guarding the four eggs,more than 4 people is recommended.(unless the group trying to make a Legion is the current Petit Paquet but im not going to talk about them now.)
-If by some chance a Burst Linker got defeated and has to wait the 1 hour until he/she respawns, if a «Stage Transition» happens while they are in that state, they will respawn (and yes,this makes Orchid Oracle on Black Vise levels of hax).
-So far the only way to tame an Enemy(or to be precise, Beings)is through a Taming Enhanced Armament like the ‘Mystical Reins’ Sulfur Pot(formerly)had, Seven Arc Sixth Star Delta ‘The Luminary’ which is owned by ARS President and the White king White Cosmos and Chocolate Puppeteer’s Ability «Cocoa Fountain».
-Double Payback is an ability from The Strife, not from Green Grandee.
-From the information I gathered so far, there are apparently 4 ways to get an Ability:
1. Level Up Bonus.
2. From Shop,Enemy Drop and Dungeon Raid Enhanced Armaments.
3. From Levelling Up initial Enhanced Armaments(ex:Scarlet Rain’s Invincible) or a Trait that a Duel Avatar Has(ex:Aqua Current’s water armor).
4. Moments of extreme adversity. As long as your avatar can support your wish for X ability that you need in that instant, it will come. This is how Haruyuki unlocks Aviation wayyy back in Volume 1
-The ISS Kit gives you more power depending:
1. The more of loser you are.(As descibed by Bush Utan)
2. How pathetic you are in Brain Burst and RL.
3. The more you suffer in Brain Burst and RL.
4. The more negative emotions you are suppressing in yourself.
Unsurprisingly Taku was the strongest ISS Kit user seen; he dwarfed ALL of the other ISS Kit Users in comparison.(to be precise Taku’s Dark Shot is as Strong as the Invincible’s Laser Cannon(and destroyed the building they were on),his ‘Lighting Dark Spike,’ the negative IS Version of his Lighting Cyan Spike, was so fast Haru didn’t even see it and ripped off one of his wings and arms. His Dark Blow would have finished Haru if he didn’t guard at the right time and launched him to the wall.
Warning: contains SAO
AW Vol16 have shown Accel Assault, Brain Burst, and Cosmos Corrupt are basically different versions of the mostly-same acceleration game, with the Imperial Palace being the common piece in all of the versions without changes (ie, Four Gods & The Fluctuating Light are present in all versions). Metatron posits the creator/s of BB doesn’t own the Fluctuating Light, and these games were created so someone can break into the Imperial Palace and reach the Fluctuating Light. Additionally, after going back to the Level 9 levelling-up message to check the Exact Words, Black Lotus found after reaching Level 10 the reward was not “clear the game”, but instead “understand the truth of this world”.
So where does Alicization comes into this? Well, in the WEB Final chapter Kikuoka was thought to have alternative motives than the stated goal of having Japanese military being independent from the US for their national security. Combined with the existence of Azure Heir in the Imperial Palace, and the ‘Japan Fuck Yeah’ attitude Kawahara have for the UW battles against US, Korean and Chinese players this leads to my leap of logic:
in case it needs to be re-stated, everything below this point is only my conjecture
Post-UW, Kirito + others decided to keep UW sealed away from the world since it would open them to abuse by the real world. The ‘Information War’ in the shadows from the WEB epilogue may or may not have happened by the time of AW-timeline, but if it did I’m guessing the UW side didn’t win – as seen by the lack of AIs/Fluctlights everywhere. I’m guessing there were three sides:
1) Kikuoka, Higa, by extension Rath with an alliance with StarKing!Kirito and Fluctlight!Kayaba;
2) SAO protagonists – Kirito + harem allies such as Asuna, Alice, and the people in UW that chose to follow him instead of their Star King (I’m guessing after 200 years Kirito would be more like F/Z!Arturia than a shounen protagonist);
3) antagonists – the US + traitors in the Japanese government that sold out to foreign influence.
Kikuoka worked for the Imperial Family and believed with them in charge it would be better compared to corrupt, inept politicians and excessive foreign meddling. With the end of the Information War the heavy-weights such as Fluctlight!Kayaba and StarKing!Kirito sealed the entrance to UW, with only a small portal remaining – that being The Fluctuating Light as we know it in BB. The Imperial Palace is their stronghold, with Incarnate System being the #1 thing that could break through and the thing to watch out for by the Mobs there. Azure Heir is their answer for the unification of UW and Japan, with StarKing!Kirito unwilling to take the throne and is only motivated by duty after being exhausted by 200+ years of life and his Asuna that stayed with him all that time gone.
Kirito and other helped made AA, BB and CC, to act both as a shackle to Faction #1 and as a training/recruiting ground for the UW side – Kirito probably won’t agree with the means Rath is going for, but they’re the lesser of two evils compared to #3. Kayaba helps out Faction #2, as he’s like the opposite of SK!Kirito, like how there needs to be two programs checking each other in the Cardinal System.
The Acceleration Research Society would be antagonists supported by Faction #3 SAO-series’ era, with government funding (my reasoning for how the the ISS kit core in a expensive hotel was possible) and hardware technology (eg, BIC) in exchange for not having total-access to Fluctlight tech & UW. With Kayaba on the other team the ARS side won’t ever be able to out-maneuver Faction #1 using ‘software’/minds.
The entirety of Accel World plotline is the calm before the storm where older plotlines clash again, or to quote F/SN!Gilgamesh “women and children” fighting before the real badasses of the previous generation take the stage.