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Yen Press Adds Sword Art Online, Accel World Light Novels, More Madoka Magica Manga

posted on by Crystalyn Hodgkins
Also: 2 Sword Art Online manga series

North American publisher Yen Press announced at its panel at Japan Expo USA on Friday that it has licensed Reki Kawahara's Sword Art Online and Accel World light novel series. The company also announced it will release the Sword Art Online: Aincrad and Sword Art Online: Fairy Dance manga arcs, as well as Magica Quartet and Hanokage's Puella Magi Madoka Magica: The Different Story manga series.

ASCII Media Works' Dengeki Bunko light novel imprint published the first Sword Art Online light novel volume with illustrations by abec in April 2009, and the publisher shipped the 13th light novel volume on August 10 in Japan. The light novel series follows Kazuto "Kirito" Kirigaya, who enters a virtual-reality massively multi-player online (MMO) game called "Sword Art Online," but soon Kirito and the other 10,000 players in the game find they are permanently stuck in the world until someone clears the game, and where "game over" means the death of the player. Yen Press will release the first light novel volume in early 2014. The light novels inspired a 25-episode television anime series last year that Aniplex of America is releasing on home video and that is also airing on Adult Swim's Toonami block.

Tamako Nakamura launched the two-volume Sword Art Online: Aincrad manga (pictured far left) in ASCII Media Works' Dengeki Bunko Magazine in 2010. Tsubasa Hazuki launched the Sword Art Online: Fairy Dance manga (pictured at left) in the same magazine in 2012, and the second volume in that series will ship on August 27. Yen Press will ship the first manga volume in early 2014.

ASCII Media Works published the first Accel World light novel volume with illustrations by HIMA in February 2009, and the publisher shipped the 14th novel in June. The "future teen" story revolves around a bullied middle school boy named Haruyuki. One autumn day in 2046, he has an encounter with Kuroyukihime, the prettiest girl in his school, that changes his life. Through a mysterious piece of software from Kuroyukihime, Haruyuki learns of the existence of the virtual "Accel World." In that moment, the lowest of the "school caste" becomes "Burst Linker," a knight defending a princess. The light novels also inspired a 24-episode television anime series in 2012, and Viz Media is releasing the anime on home video. The anime is also streaming on Viz Media's Neon Alley service.

Hanokage launched the Puella Magi Madoka Magica: The Different Story manga in Houbunsha's Manga Time Kirara Magica magazine last October. The manga focuses on Kyouko and Mami and follows an alternate chain of events. Houbunsha published the third and final volume in the series last November. Yen Press will release the first volume in March 2014.

Yen Press published Hanokage's original Puella Magi Madoka Magica manga, as well as Takashi Tensugi's Puella Magi Kazumi Magica - The Innocent Malice manga and the Chloe Mura's Puella Magi Oriko Magica manga.

Yen Press also mentioned at the panel that Yūki Kodama and Kanata Yoshino's Blood Lad spinoff manga Bloody Brat will ship in March 2014.

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