The fifth Sword Art Online video game, Fatal Bullet is the first time we get to play in Gun Gale Online. Now with third-person shooting instead of the previous action RPG systems, Fatal Bullet pairs you up with an all-new cast of characters, as well as some returning from previous games. With the option to create your own character for the first time while partying up with heroes from previous games, Fatal Bullet is hoping to capture a new audience with its new setting. For those looking for a more traditional Sword Art Online experience, fear not, as a mode where players can take control of Kirito has been included.
Fatal Bullet also marks the arrival of newcomer developer Dimps to the Sword Art Online universe. After developing the relatively successful Freedom Wars for the Vita, Bandai Namco saw fit to bring in a newcomer to Bandai Namco's licensed properties, with the hope that they would offer new ideas to the series and fans. Dimps has incorporated elements from Freedom Wars wholesale in an effort to drive interest. That being said, over the shoulder shooting and indeed, the entire Gun Gale Online setting is new territory for the games, but shooting is something Dimps does have experience with.
As the previous games have relied on the Sword Art Online universe's penchant for asking uncomfortable questions about VR games and people's relationships to them, expect Fatal Bullet to be no different in that regard. While it's hard to capture the life-or-death stakes from the first game or season of the anime, expect Fatal Bullet to touch on interpersonal relationships with a similar gravitas. With three pieces of story DLC planned for later this year, all of which promise to add new characters, areas, and weapons, Fatal Bullet may well offer the most original content in a Sword Art Online game to date.