So I was wondering if there is a Sword Art Online manga, and if so which is the original, the manga or the anime?


Sword Art Online started as a light novel series (in 2009), and spawned five manga adaptations (starting in 2010) and an anime (in 2012). However, to my knowledge, the anime is based entirely on the first four volumes of the light novels and does not borrow from the manga material at all.

  • Are the mangas based on the light novels?
    – Cyberson
    Dec 13 '13 at 23:25
  • 1
    @Cyberson Somewhat. The Aincrad and Fairy Dance manga are based on the main arcs from the light novels, and the Progressive manga is based on the Progressive light novel. The others are only based on the universe, not the story.
    – Cattua
    Dec 13 '13 at 23:29

At the time of writing (July 2014), there are currently 8 manga adaptations of the series, all written by Kawahara Reki, the original author of Sword Art Online light novel series.

  • Sword Art Online: Aincrad 『ソードアート・オンライン アインクラッド』

    Illustrated by [中村]{Nakamura} [貯子]{Tamako}. Serialized from September 2010 to May 2012.

    Adapt the Aincrad arc (volume 1 and 2 of the light novel series).

  • Sword Art Online: Fairy Dance 『ソードアート・オンライン フェアリィ・ダンス』

    Illustrated by [葉月]{Hazuki} [翼]{Tsubasa}. Serialized from May 2012 to May 2014.

    Adapt Fairy Dance arc (volume 3 and 4 of the light novel series).

  • Sword Art Online: Phantom Bullet 『ソードアート・オンライン ファントム・バレット』

    Illustrated by [山田]{Yamada} [孝太郎]{Koutarou}. Serialize from May 2014.

    Adapt the Phantom Bullet arc (volume 5 and 6 of the light novel series).

  • Sword Art Online: Caliber 『ソードアート・オンライン キャリバー』

    Illustrated by [木谷]{Kiya} [椎]{Shii}. Serialize from September 2014.

    Adapt the Caliber arc, a chapter from volume 8 Sword Art Online: Early and Late of the light novel series.

  • Sword Art Online: Mother's Rosario 『ソードアート・オンライン マザーズ・ロザリオ』

    Illustrated by [葉月]{Hazuki} [翼]{Tsubasa}. Serialize from July 2014.

    Adapt the Mother's Rosario arc (volume 7 of the light novel series).

  • Sword Art Online: Girls Ops 『ソードアート・オンライン ガールズ・オプス』

    Illustrated by [猫猫]{Nekobyou} [猫]{Neko}. Serialize from July 2013.

    An original story starring Leafa, Silica, Lizbeth with ALO as the stage.

  • Sword Art Online: Progressive 『ソードアート・オンライン プログレッシブ』

    Illustrated by [比村]{Himura} [奇石]{Kiseki}. Serialize from August 2013.

    Adapt Sword Art Online: Progressive light novels, but from Asuna's point of view.

  • Sword Art☆Online 『そーどあーと☆おんらいん。』

    Illustrated by 南十字星. Serialize from September 2010.

    A comedy 4-panel manga.

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