Initially written in 2002 for the ASCII Media Works’ Dengeki Game Novel Prize (now Dengeki Novel Prize), the author refrained from sending it in due to exceeding the page limit. Kawahara Reki published it as a web novel and later added 3 more volumes and short stories to the series. After winning the Dengeki Novel Prize Grand Prize in 2008 for Accel World, ASCII Media Works requested that aside from Accel World if they could also publish Sword Art Online as well. The author agreed and withdrew the web novel version. The series was republished in light novel format in 2009.
The series received an anime adaptation in 2012, which later became highly successful. And went on popularize a whole subgenre of Japanese media known as isekai, which involves having the main character(s) originated from modern world being reincarnated into other worlds.
A movie, Sword Art Online the Movie: Ordinal Scale, was released on February 18, 2017. The movie features a new original story that takes place some time after the second season of the anime.
The following tags implicate this tag: sword_art_online:_alicization, sword_art_online:_code_register, sword_art_online:_fatal_bullet, sword_art_online:_hollow_fragment, sword_art_online:_memory_defrag, sword_art_online_alternative:_gun_gale_online, and sword_art_online_the_movie:_ordinal_scale (learn more).