Reki Kawahara who is popular for works like Sword Art Online and Accel World, has teased Asuna’s “final form” as the cover art for volume 16 of the main light novel series.
Illustrated by artist abec, it showcases Asuna’s new look, which looks like the combination of her elf form and the original Aincrad uniform. Here is the Twitter announcement:
SHURABA継続中ですが見本届いたのでこれだけはツイーらねばっ… SAO16巻、8月8日発売です！ abecさん渾身の表紙もすばらしいですが口絵もモノクロイラストもギガ・ワンダフルなのでぜひお手に取ってみてくださいませ！ pic.twitter.com/zvrUFjfhXQ
— 川原礫 (@kunori) August 3, 2015
The story will be second volume in the “Alicization” arc where Kirito is hopelessly trapped in another unknown gameworld that has little resemblance to the old gaming world that he is familiar with. Not to mention he has picked up a new love interest, another addition to his already huge harem. Now speculations are rife with that Asuna might gain access to this world in order to rescue her beloved Kirito; hence the new “final form” look that she is sporting on the cover.
The novel will be out on 8 August 2015.
Besides this, the new manga cover for Sword Art Online Progressive vol 4 by Himura Kiseki is already out too, set to publish on 7 August 2015:
And finally a spin-off manga based on story arc in Volume 8 of the light novel, “Calibur” by Shii Kiya:
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