.Hack: The Birth of Modern Isekai

.Hack: The Birth of Modern Isekai

If you were into a combination of anime and
video games in the early to mid-2000’s then chances are you’ve heard of Dot Hack before. Long before the Sword Art Onlines and the
Log Horizons of the future, the Dot Hack franchise was the first to take the Isekai genre of
having a protagonist sent to another world, and apply it not to fantasy, but to something
more like modern science fiction, specifically a video game. That also had a little bit of fantasy to it, yeah we’ll forget about that bit. This was a bit of a bold move in retrospect;
the whole setting of Dot Hack revolves around an MMO called “The World” from a time
when MMO’s only really just came onto the scene. The first released instance of any Hack media
came out at the start of 2002. This was a midpoint when it had only been
5 years since the term MMO was coined with the release of Ultima Online in 1997 and 3
years since the release of one of the more modern mainstream MMO experiences with Everquest. This was also a full 2 years before the monolith
of an RPG game called World of Warcraft would be released. The initial entries of Dot Hack introduced
us to this fantasy-like world, but one that was heavily rooted in gaming mechanics and
terms. This kind of setting would only become more
prevalent as the years went on. Welcome ladies, gentlemen, and others, my name is Arkada and Today on Glass Reflection we are taking a
look at the early .Hack// franchise and the birth of modern Isekai. Let’s jam. To start, we rewind to the beginning of the
Spring anime season of 2002. While many people would assume that
the first entry in the Hack franchise was the original 4 PS2 games (since it’s the
games which historically ends up driving the franchise forward), in this particular case
Hack was kicked off a full two months earlier with the release of .hack//SIGN. With a plotline that might sound overly cliché
now, but was inspired back then, SIGN tells the story of a young MMO player by the screenname
of Tsukasa who, due to mysterious circumstances, gets sucked into the MMO that they play and
is forced to live in this digital world. Tsukasa is not the same kind of protagonist
though that we see becoming prevalent nowadays. He doesn’t really know what happened to
him, and largely he seems to feel apathetic about the whole thing. It might also be because it’s not necessarily
correct to call Tsukasa the protagonist. While he is definably the focus of the series’
big mystery, the plot isn’t told from his perspective alone and rather in how the rest
of the cast of normal, not trapped players interact with him. Over the course of 26 episodes, Tsukasa ends
up meeting with a variety of gamers who eventually learn of his plight and, despite Tsukasa’s
loner and introverted nature, seek to help him out of his predicament and also scratch
the surface on what actually caused him to be trapped in the first place and what that
could mean. Now I’ve been largely harsh on SIGN over
the years, mostly because a lot of what actually made the series good was dragged out over
a length that I don’t think it really justified. Half as many episodes would have served purpose
just fine, although I can concede that the extra padding could be necessary for someone
who didn’t have any other interest in the franchise and wasn’t also playing or reading
other media. SIGN was very much a prologue chapter to the
whole universe and as such is not really good at being anything else but a gateway to the
franchise. But, because it’s a gateway, one of the
more brilliant things about SIGN is that it had two different narratives going on at the
same time, which I think is what made the franchise as a whole so appealing throughout
the 2000’s. While there was the surface narrative about
Tsukasa’s story that held the spotlight, throughout the series, there were plenty of
instances showcasing a much more mysterious and deeper narrative to “The World” itself. This did not get expanded here but only touched
on, just enough to whet your appetite for it and make you curious about it, and to follow
along with the franchise to see exactly where it was going. It took the appeal of being sent to a fantasy
world and applied it to a more modern context. Instead of being whisked away to some fantasy
universe with swords and sorcery like in the 80s and 90s, it set up this intriguing digital
world, one that sure also had swords and sorcery, but also one that would entice viewers to
want to live in it themselves. Which brings us to… The Games The original Hack Tetralogy was a series of 4 games released on Playstation 2 between
June of 2002 and April of 2003. It was a rare series of games that decided
to split its narrative into multiple parts sold separately, rather than as one solid
compilation. We’ll get to that in a moment. The narrative of the games has the player
character Kite introduced to this new MMO by his friend who plays a swordsman by the
name of Orca. All goes well as an introduction to this new
world until, during their first play session, they run across a mysterious girl being chased
by a monster. In trying to save her, Orca gets hit by an
unknown attack which logs the character out. The story tells us later that the player is
now in the hospital having fallen into a coma. Our character Kite, now armed with a fantastical
bracelet given to him by the girl Aura, must explore the various caves and crevasses of
the game to uncover the truth behind the unexplained incidents so that he can perhaps save his
friend. I loved these games when they came out, and
my entry into the franchise began with them. This weird cyber mystery about coming together
with friends to save a world we loved was a tale that had me hooked when I was 12. Now however, having replayed through the games
in my late 20’s, I can only say that the games have not held up. Though the reason for that is not because
of the plot or the characters, but largely because of how Hack was developed and marketed. For example, when I said that the series contained
4 separate games, what if I told you that they really were all actually one game. Despite being split up into 4 separate parts,
the game play of .//Hack never changed from volume to volume. If you just watched general gameplay in a video, you would be hard pressed to identify exactly which game was in front of you unless it was given
away by a specific party member or an identifiable boss battle. A good comparison for this is another popular
PS2 era RPG series, Xenosaga, which between games had massive changes both to how the
games were presented and also played. Hack really is just one game split up into 4 pieces
and sold separately for an unknown reason or purpose. For a long time, I assumed it was similar
to how many PS1 games were produced back in the day on multiple discs. Maybe because of the sheer amount of data,
they needed to split the game off because it wouldn’t fit on one disc alone. But oh no, pop in game 4 and once you complete
the game you have access to every cut scene and every dungeon from all of the previous
“games”. The only things not able to be replayed are
the boss battles themselves. But I highly doubt the models and attack patterns
alone justify 4 discs, especially when all the boss stages are identical to one another. So really, as far as the actual content to
the series, it’s all on disc 4 alone or at least should be. It just isn’t available. Because why do that when you can instead sell
the game in 4 parts at full retail value? It really does boggle my mind that they were able
to get away with this back in the early 2000’s! Can you imagine if they tried that today? What if Square came out and was going to release a Final Fantasy in episodic parts for no reason? …oh wait. It doesn’t help that the vast majority of
the game’s plot is buried in gameplay tedium. Like the whole goal with the gameplay was
to create a simulated MMO world and – for 2002 – I honestly think they nailed that
perfectly. By that, I mean it was boring as sh– But having spent far too much time in more
modern MMO’s the grind was just a bit too much Because the whole game really was a grind
and nothing more. 80% of this game is a loop where you are given a location keyword, travel there, and whatever is suppose to happen will always occur on the bottom level
of that location’s procedurally generated dungeon. New keyword, clear the dungeon, story continues
without variation. 10% of the game is them simulating other parts
of MMO life, like logging off the game to read your emails. Only to then respond to them, and as soon
as you log back into the game DING DONG YOU GOT MAIL like you weren’t just there
two seconds ago. Seriously, having multiple monitors are a godsend
nowadays. Of course, the absolute worst part of the
grind is dealing with your fellow “Players” and I’m honestly not sure if the AI is either
helping or harming the realism in this respect. If you’ve played an MMO before, imagine
a low end pick up group, where your fellow players have no agency on their own, need
to be told to do virtually everything, and in the more complicated fights sometimes feel
more like a burden than a help. That’s your party members in this game. Oh look! This enemy is immune to physical attacks! Good thing that Blackrose keeps trying to
hit it with her sword even after I went OUT OF MY WAY to tell her to use magic, WHICH
I KNOW SHE HAS. Sometimes I truly wondered if it could get
any worse, but as any PS2 era RPG player can tell you, this wasn’t the worst party AI
we could have been dealing with. It’s just not fun. Perhaps for someone who didn’t spend an
embarrassing amount of time living in a more recent MMO world, you might find it quite
enjoyable, but I found it to be a slog. One that I am happy I repeated if only for
the nostalgia, but a slog nonetheless. So why did I enjoy it? And why did I spend years searching though
game swaps and convention dealer’s rooms for a copy especially when the price is so
high? Like seriously, part 4 alone can cost you over $2000… [This is where I screwed up and said $2000 instead of $200] Part 4 alone can cost you
over $200 CANADIAN and trying to snag the whole set can cost far
more than that. Well, what kept me interested in the series
for so long was the style of it. Sure, the game was clunky and looking at the
narrative as a whole nowadays feels…well cliché. There is a level of mystery and atmosphere
to the development of the whole setting that still sticks with me to this day. Largely, I feel this was due to the work of
two musical composers: Chikayo Fukuda and Yuki Kajiura. Fukuda was the composer for both sets of games,
and while her compositions initially lacked a sense of epic scale at times when it might
have needed it, she excelled in calming atmospheres and relaxed tones with just a hint of discord
within them. It wasn’t until the GU games that I thought she started
growing heavily as a composer. This was when she was able to bring that same
level of atmosphere to add both the epic scale for battle sequences and dial the unsettling
calm up to 11. It also was when she possibly started taking
some cues from Kajiura’s work on the franchise by introducing a new kind of eerie vocals
much to the mass enjoyment of all, especially me. While there were vocal tracks in the original
games, GU is where Fukuda’s work especially shined. Then we have the work of Yuki Kajiura, specifically her work almost a full 10 years before she would come far more into prominence as a composer. In the grand scheme of things, Kajiura only
worked on a very limited section of the franchise, but her tracks are some of the most memorable. Not only that, but since she was the composer
on .hack//SIGN – one of the few positive things about that series – and since SIGN
was the first piece of Hack media to be released, Kajirua was responsible for the initial musical tone that fans of the series were introduced to. Her work on SIGN is still some of the best
the franchise has to date and it’s really no surprise that shortly after this she was
tapped for another series of PS2 RPGS and eventually called on to compose the music
for the next stage of MMO Isekai in 2012. This all actually leads to the question of…what
happened? With the recent boom of Isekai worlds steeped
deep in gaming, why have we not seen a sudden resurgence of this franchise from the depths
of the PS2 era? Well, while I don’t have a confirmed answer
to that question, I do have a particular theory. The franchise is way too bloated. The developers and owners of the Dot Hack
franchise went all in back when the series started, and I mean all in. They had the 24 episode .hack//SIGN that they
produced, the original 4 PS2 games, and the sequel manga series that itself had its own
anime adaptation The games also came prepackaged with a 4-episode
OVA called Liminality, which tells a side story that happened concurrent with the game
volumes and is a hell of a lot more compelling nowadays with its narrative than the games
themselves. It doesn’t end there though. There were also a slew of novels released
– from AI Buster, to Another Birth, to even Zero – and this is all before Dot Hack reached
its second stage. After the success of the original bunch of
Hack media, a number of companies came together to help usher in the franchise’s second
stage. Titled .hack Conglomerate, the series did
a bit of a time jump from a narrative perspective, and they paved the way for a whole new set
of media: anime, novels, and of course a new trilogy of games. But all of this, even this second generation
of Hack titles all came relatively quickly. To illustrate, let’s bring up some dates,
shall we? The initial release of the original .Hack//Infection
PS2 game was on June 20, 2002 in Japan, while the final entry of the sequel series,
.Hack//GU came out on September 10, 2007. That’s only 5 years, and every single piece
of content I mentioned in the franchise all came out in that 5 year stretch of time. Honestly, we got burned out. At least I did. It was hard to keep up, so it’s not surprising
that people fell out of the franchise when they kept feeling out of the loop. Unable to keep up with it all. So much so that for the 15th anniversary of
the series, the creators came along and released an HD remaster of the GU games, complete with
a brand new 4th part! But I must say I haven’t seen the same level
of excitement that I would have hoped from its release, at least not in the West. Perhaps the Japanese reception has been quite
a bit different, but I seem to doubt that. .hack is extremely notable for being one of
the first in its genre of narratives to do something different. It took a formula which, at that point, had
been done to death and breathed new life into it. I would very much be interested in seeing
the creators try to come together to introduce a new entry into the franchise. And no, I’m not just talking about a Japan-only
mobile game that didn’t last for more than a year [Hack New World]. Though understandably, I can see the reluctance,
as it’s hard to really imagine where the narrative can go from where we left it. After going through two separate MMO games
with dark hidden code in them, it starts to break our immersion to believe that people
would still want to play MMO’s with that kind of Russian roulette back alley development. There was a PSP game released
in 2010, Japan-only of course, that introduced a third version of “The World” MMO as a setting, but it didn’t seem to take off all that well. So now what’s left of the Hack Franchise
is a bit like a piece of history, rather than something that is still ongoing. Something that can be looked at fondly and
be noteworthy for what it was and what it did for the genre of narrative and its atmosphere,
but sadly not much else. If you wanted to dive into the series nowadays,
you could always start at the beginning with .hack//SIGN, as long as you can handle a story
that really does feel like it’s almost 20 years old. Either that, or pick up the remaster of the
GU series! While you would technically be missing a bunch of backstory to the setting if you went that route, it still works as a semi-introduction for newcomers and is as good a place as any to start as any. Beyond that, I’ll leave it to you. Thank you very much for watching this video! If you liked it and want to see more in this
style, be sure to give the video a like and let me know down in the comments. Very special thanks to our patrons, specifically
Calhoonboy , Matthew Robertson, Hector Montemayor, Siri Yamiko, Ryefan Boneapart, Rune Jachobson,
and Joshua Garcia who are especially awesome. And until next time, ladies, gentlemen, and others… Watch more anime! or video games….whatever. Just Stay Frosty.

Leave a Response

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

100 thoughts on “.Hack: The Birth of Modern Isekai”

  • I would love a full remaster of the original series of games, I was only 4 years old at the start of them and I always thought the entry point was the hardest part of this franchise, in comparison to something like Fate, etc.

  • This is an Incredible video. I remember the dot hack series back in the early 00s but I didn’t have the funds to check out the games. I greatly regret that. Would it be okay if I featured this video on my site? You would get direct linkage and total credit for the video.

  • .hack is a simple enclosed story, reiterating it and drawing it out will turn into DBZ series, no thank you.

  • It's been years since the last entry in the franchise… and I still wait for a new .hack anime. And so, I shall continue my wait for the return of the original Isekai.

  • Never got into this series (games) as a kid, but my sister and I watched .hack//Roots and much later we read the early English releases for .hack//Link. We never understood the setting of The World properly so it's a shame.

  • I remember .hack//sign airing on Toonami. For whatever reason, I never really caught more than 4 episodes and honestly don't remember enough to say what happened. I know a bunch of people I hung out with were super into the games… I didn't own a PS2 so I was out of the loop. I wouldn't mind trying to watch the original series, at least to get a refresher on it.

    Somehow, I did catch all of Zoids Chaotic Century though… probably helped that that series began to air in the morning a little bit before I would go to school.

  • Believe it or not, the mysterious (at the time) .//HACK Sign OP got me really interested in anime.

    Because I had not seen anything like that before.

  • Maybe, make an actual .Hack//MMO with a similar design and depth to the og series, using inspiration from the types of MMO games we have these days. The world, as an actual online game, if tended to the way ff14 or phantasy star are right now, would be a strong competitor in the gaming market.

  • I'm actually more partial to .hack//DUSK (aka Legend of the Twilight) since it was less melancholy and more up beat. .hack//SIGN always seemed like a bit of a slog to me, but who knows, I haven't watched either of these in over a decade so maybe if I revisited them my mind would change. I do know that was so obsessed with the series back in the day that in the old "PlayerWorlds" based MMO that I ran for a while called "Quest Online" (Lol, ya I know how original) I used a custom made sprite of Kite as my Admin exclusive avatar.

  • I really liked the .hack anime series. I think I have watched all of them 3 times during years. For me they were relaxing to watch because of the music and the slow pace of story. Even though nowadays I notice the animation and how cheaply they were made. Whenever something happened that would have required bit more fast paced action, they generally jumped to show some other players who were just calmly talking about something. Very few scenes with much movement and mostly very static. Especially .hack root series.

  • I unfortunately never got to finish this series because Toonami would always show the same first three episodes over and over again for no reason and then one day it was just gone off the air

  • This is a fantastic history of my all time favorite IP. It's actually funny though: when people ask me where to start with the .hack series, I actually tell them that the best .hack anime isn't from .hack, it's Log Horizon. If they enjoy Log Horizon, then I point them to .hack.

  • The manga/anime released between the two game series always felt more like filler and not like it was really part of the series to me. I didn't get very far into it. There was some anime or OVA in there that was a retelling of the original games (it changed a bunch of stuff for some reason), did anyone see that?

  • 9:28 Seriously don't get this joke as you can just set the characters to literally JUST attack weak points and that's all they will do.

  • I loved the .Hack franchise and still do. I know a lot love to tout Signs, but Roots was my favorite season of the anime and I was HYPED when Last Recode was announced Seriously, I was eating nothing but crappy (and most likely expired) microwave ramen for months just so I had enough left over cash to get the game at launch, I wanted it that bad! (I'm a responsible adult…usually)

  • Wow, it's pretty rare to find people talking about .hack nowadays. I just got into the series recently and i'm in the middle of vol 3 in last recode.

  • I love Sign!!! The intro song is amazing that felt like something you'd find in a game, the despair of the protagonist as he is the only one stuck, the slow build of trust and friendship, PKers, the purposeful plot holes and difference of real life and video games. We need a new instalment

  • Hey, was wondering what you felt about Dororo. Loved the series and it just ended.. I also loved the .hack games

  • Thanks for bringing up some memories of rage lol I enjoyed Sign BUT It left many questions unanswered for me an my friend. So I bought Legend of the Twilight and Roots and not only were we so bored with these it did not answer our questions on some things that happened in Sign. Like what happened when the gang was forceably logged out or whatever happened when Helba "abandoned that field". What happened with Skeith? And what happened with Sora. And I found out about the games but haven't looked into them.

  • Man I came here to be nostalgic and you are so negative. Anime is boring, game is boring. Game is greedy?

  • .hack has always been my jam, even though I'm not really into modern isekai much. Another thing interesting the franchise did after it went Japan only that I don't remember any other thing using is the functionality of Blu-Ray to have a game and a movie with .hack//End of the World (a movie) and .hack//Versus (a 3-D Naruto Storm like fighter) on one disc. It reads the movie when played on any normal BD player or a PS4 and reads the game on PS3, and it's actually pretty fun all things considered as it wasn't released standalone.

  • Thanks for this video. Just in time considering that I recently played through //infection and am continuing the series

  • The thing about this series is that it's not for everyone but it's my cup of tea because I prefer dialogue heavy games.

    Thanks for reawakening my inner nostalgia, dude.

  • this isnt a booktube channle even though it is Diverse and has Manga in it this one has all since it has a Bookish Story Plot in it

  • Last Recode also comes with the contents of the Terminal Disc, a disc that was included with the special edition of Vol.1 which goes over the events of the original tetralogy and what happened inbetween the events of Quarentine and Rebirth.

    Basically, there's almost no need to play the original games now.

  • I wish we could get a remaster of the original .hack// games with lots of quality of life improvements. It could be possible as the God Eater franchise has re-released the first game 3 times with massive improvements each time, so the Publisher Bandai would likely be behind such a decision. Which leaves it up to the Developers CyberConnect2 to act upon it unless there is some licencing issues.

  • Sign's soundtrack is fantastic. It's Up there, next to Cowboy Bebop as my favorite, and one of the few (other being trigun) that I had the mp3s. I loved the the anime for it's atmosphere, it felt kind melancolic, but also "urgent". The same can be said about the G.U games, which were the only ones I played. Nice to see a video about it, specially when we live in a world where people meme the phrase "ZA WARUDO" to death without knowing where it originally came from.

  • i skipped the first four games, but i played 2 out of the 4 GU games. i just… couldn't drag myself through the third one, by the time i finished the second i was done. i just watched my brother playing in some key parts instead, just to know what happens.

    i liked hack//sign (my ragnarok online guild – a 2002 mmorpg – was even called .hackers// and that almost outlasted the franchise), but yeah, it does drag and nothing much happens. the much more recent 3 episode OVA hack//quantum is basically the same plot condensed into 3 episodes and it's SO MUCH BETTER. i like it a lot more. unfortunately, it doesn't have the god tier music. i think, i haven't watched it in years.

  • I still have the original four games. I had the PS2 G.U. games, but sold them to get the PS4 version. I was wondering if anything transfers from the original to the G.U. games that I'll be missing. I was in College at the time of the PS2 G.U. releases so I never actually finished the games.

  • Sign turned me off the franchise way back. I picked out the GU remaster on steam a while back and now wish I had given the series more a a chance. I really want to play the first four games but as you said they are crazy expansive and I can't get them to run well on an emulator.

  • There is a reason behind VIIR being split, and it's because the time and effort remaking it with the visuals and scope they're aiming to do it in would ultimately make the project descend into a dev hell (one far worse than the likes of Duke Nukem or SE's own Versus XIII/FFXV, as those were inhibited by things that put a stop to production for a long time).

    While the proper solution is to just NOT make VIIR at all and move forward with new RPGs that don't need to have the kind of wildly different assets a VII remake requires, they trapped themselves and promised a fancy remake with realistic graphics, and now everyone pays the price (of however many parts it'll have). 😛

  • I had a bit of an . . . obsession with dot Hack when it first came out. I love the anime and have watched it multiple times, I think it is part of why I can take some joy in slower animes today, though certainly not as slow lol. I have never completed any of the games. The grind was far to much for me and by the time I had time to actually sit down and play, well life just kept going. I never got into GU or ROOTs though I have tried to watch Roots and GU did look somewhat interesting. By the time they came out I was already burned by Legend of the Twilight and I don't think I enjoyed that the main character of the GU series was a bit too. . . shonen.
    Overall I 100% agree with your statements, the music is incredible and there is nothing wrong with starting in the GU era as that is certainly more fleshed out than the original lol.
    I'm just happy to see we haven't all forgotten this series.

  • Please understand, as a massive .hack// fan, I'd be happy for even a reboot. The only thing I wouldn't be happy for is .hack//LINK again…….. anything. anything. give me anything.

  • Basically another Shinji like protagonist, but in MMO Isekai.
    Frankly speaking, really mediocre, I don't recall the story but can remember all the episodes are about characters talking to each other. Same thing can be said to the sequel .hack//Roots.
    There're Films of the franchise that actually have some decent battle scenes, so I recommend to watch the films.

  • It's sad to see how a popular series gets affected by time, considering how people do get better systems and improvements that the older games did give. But it's always good to know that even if that's the case, we can still appreciate what it did for the genre or game history.

    I will consider trying this game from GU, mainly to see how it's interesting but I thank you for the perspective on this series and how it's the biggest flaw was exploiting it to no end instead of waiting for a bit.

    But now I have a certain curiosity to check it out.

  • man, i loved the .hack ps2 games, im not kidding though i've seen it sell for 400$ because of it being so old and hard to come by. I always used Elk cause he was OP.

  • To be honest i just bought the new GU remake just to hangout in eternal city mac anu by the bridge and appreciate the everlasting sunset. It just brought me a weird sense of calm

  • Another birth is a good way to experience the games. 4 light novels that tell the story from blackrose point of view. So… hack/sign + another birth + the twilight manga is a perfect combination. The ai buster books with short stories really complement well that first hack. Never got into GU though, i though the first one was already enough

  • Yuki kajiura did amazing work creating an unforgettable atmosphere within the franchise! Am I the only one who needs a .hack//SIGN OST 1&2 on a vinyl release with cool cover and sleeve art?

  • This trilogy is the best that you can find out there… I mean u could create keyword for infinite dungeons this would be the best MMORPG if adapted to today technology but no one want to take idea because thay are scared of the immensity of work that come from that easy money come from easy project… And you forgot abaut hack fragment who is a real MMORPG online for ps2 created at the time

  • Before their was SAO or Ready player one before all Isekai protagonist we're over power males I do and forever will love .hack the game with a game 🙂 the story of the epitaph of twilight also pretty awesome too. 😀

  • Found both of those series of games In my boxes of ps2 games yesterday. Remember when I first saw the .hack game on a shelf when it came out in a blockbuster video. The show I always watched late at night and fell asleep to and probably is the best kind of show to do that as the opening and ending are like a dreamscape. Burned though the 4 games and think it was ahead of its time as I can’t remember many other games where you can carry your progress and is linked to other mediums.

  • .hack always had such good premises and characters but always faltered in execution. Sign was cheaply made and had incredibly poor pacing. The main quartet was competent but the later games were filled with tedious busywork. And don't even get me started on G.U…

    All that being said – I miss this franchise. I know it was deeply flawed but I still have an incredible fondness for it.

  • Yeah, the burnout was real. I struggled to put together pocket money to afford the first four games as a kid (and tracking down the fourth game was no easy feat due to major retailers dropping it due to the anime tiddies on the OVA disc). Between them and the Legend of the Twilight Bracelet manga, Sign DVDs, and the novels, I was out nearly $300, which is a lot for a 13 year-old kid. By the time G.U. came out, my interest in the series had completely died and so I skipped it.

    I ordered G.U. Recode recently for cheap so maybe I'll get back into things. I hope they do a similar thing with the original four games.

  • They should make a legit .hack MMO game and release new content by adding new nouns and adjectives creating new variables of dungeons to explore! I would gladly pay for subscription for that and drop any other game that i have been playing!

  • As a long time fan, the scathing critique was hard to stomach. Though is was accurate and rife with notable examples, it was still cool to learn more about the production history and artistic design the series helped propagate. All that aside, everyone know SAO was the .hack reboot everyone needed but that nobody wanted. Just a shame REKI KAWAHARA had to develop it :(]

  • As far as I see it, Dot Hack seems to be trying to capitalize the success of Star Wars’s Expanded Universe, what Dot Hack went really wrong is something like this:

    -The story is confusing as hell.
    -There’s an alternate timeline (G.U. Series) which makes things even more complicated.
    -The .Hack/SIGHN is the only anime adaptation that’s 100% Canon to the games lore, while others like the Novels, Mangas and even other Anime adaptations are 0% Canon.

    And people say Kingdom Hearts was complicated, LOL it’s been holding his beer for the past 17 years. 😂

  • I got into the series when I was 11, same time I was into MMO's like Star Wars Galaxies and WoW, so I saw this whole series through rose colored lens. I was so scared and fascinated by the universe! The soundtrack in the anime truly is the best part but I also loved how aloof the protagonist was, and the fact they were *spoiler* a female with disabilities IRL, roleplaying as a male online, reminded me a lot of myself. A little too close to home. Thanks for clearing this series up and reminding me I probably shouldn't rewatch it, don't wana shatter these lenses lol

  • Hi, I'm new here. Played the original four games, but failed the fourth because the infection was too severe and I did not know how to use multiple saves. So I never finished the series, aaaaand just kind of dropped away from it after that. Might be interesting to check out the remaster, as you said, just to see where the series went next. Maybe.