Image via A-1 Pictures

Is ‘Sword Art Online’ getting a season 5?

The story continues, but not in a serialized format.

The epitome of isekai and one of the most popular anime of the past decade, Sword Art Online has cemented itself as a constant force at the box office, forums, and charts. However, Aniplex and its subsidiary production studio, A-1 Pictures, haven’t released a new season of the mainline series in three years. While there’s still a lot going on in Sword Art Online, here’s what we know about a fifth season.

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The anime adaptation of Reki Kawahara’s Sword Art Online light novels first premiered in 2012, depicting the series’ Aincrad Arc to LiSA’s iconic opening theme “Crossing Field.” The story continued in a sequel 24-episode season, Sword Art Online II, in 2014. The next major mainline entry to the anime would come in film, however, with 2017’s Sword Art Online The Movie: Ordinal Scale.

SAO seasons 3 and 4

The next major arc to tackle was the Alicization arc, which would make up the third and fourth seasons of the anime. Sword Art Online: Alicization introduced fans to the virtual “Underworld,” where Kirito teams up with NPCs and AIs to escape. The arc concluded two years later in the sequel season Sword Art Online: Alicization War of Underworld.

While Sword Art Online is still going strong as one of the most popular anime series in the world, the isekai hasn’t seen a new TV series since War of Underworld wrapped up in 2020. Along with the numerous light novel, manga, anime, and video game spin-offs — most notably Sword Art Online Alternative Gun Gale Online — the series’ latest mainline entry was the 2021 film Sword Art Online: Progressive Aria of a Starless Night.

The future of SOA

So, while there is no season five on the horizon, A-1 Pictures is still working on the main series. Following on from Starless Night, a second film titled Sword Art Online Progressive: Scherzo of Deep Night premiered on October 22, 2022. In 2018, the rights to a live-action version of the series were sold to Netflix, but there have yet to be any further developments on that front.

And we still have no fifth season as of this writing.

Sword Art Online: Progressive is published in English by Yen Press. You can stream Sword Art Online on Crunchyroll.

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Autumn Wright
Autumn Wright is an anime journalist, which is a real job. As a writer at We Got This Covered, they cover the biggest new seasonal releases, interview voice actors, and investigate labor practices in the global industry. Autumn can be found biking to queer punk through Brooklyn, and you can read more of their words in Polygon, WIRED, The Washington Post, and elsewhere.
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Chynna Wilkinson
Chynna has been a noteworthy presence within creative media for over seven years. As a self-proclaimed geek driven by a passion for horror, comic books, video games, and modern cinema, she takes pride in doing what she loves. In addition to her personal writing projects, Chynna is also an award-winning screenwriter, published poet, and accomplished academic writer, producing everything from short stories and screenplays to articles, features, and poetry. She enjoys watching anime, horror movies, and animated shows and her life revolves around cinema, video games, and tasteful literature.