Accel World Episode 16: The Incarnate System
Sky Raker teaches Haruyuki about the Incarnate System, the ability for Burst Linkers to overcome the reality of the virtual world through pure willpower, letting them extend past their own physical limits through their own imagination. She pushes Haru back down the tower, and for the next seven days, Haru learns to understand and shape his own image power and climb his way up the tower, despite stage changes and heavy winds blowing him off. After making it back to the top and completing his training, Sky Raker meets him in real life and gives him her Gale Thruster ability, in the hopes that he’ll use it to fly once more.
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Determination managing to break past the limits of a character’s abilities and letting them do things previously impossible is a theme commonly seen in many series, but for it to be so significant in a show like Accel World wasn’t exactly what I expected. In essence, Brain Burst is a fighting game – and is thus controlled by a certain set of parameters, and rules that are technically not possible to break. Because it’s a game, there are limits to what you’d expect to be able to do, and even in a virtual reality setting, I’d have thought that the rules are still law. SAO operates on a similar base – the Cardinal System, which literally sets what players can and cannot do.
In that sense, the Incarnate System, which is able to break those virtual limits through willpower is a deadly weapon, and it’s a good thing that this kind of power isn’t common knowledge, or else all hell will break loose. Granted, it isn’t that easy to master, but I’m wondering why more people aren’t using it to break past their own limits and reach greater heights if truly great things can be achieved. Coming to think of it, the idea does work, seeing as everything – the fighting, the acceleration – is all in the mind, and comes from the brain. And since it isn’t “physical”, if your brain wills it, I guess there’s no reason why you shouldn’t be able to override reality.
Anyway, they sure stuffed in lots of backstory for Sky Raker (and a bit of fanservice too while they were at it). I’m not surprised she knows Black Lotus – everyone seems to know Kuroyukihime – and if she was in the Black Legion, I suppose legions aren’t restricted to the colour you possess. Thus far most people with a red-related name went to Niko, blue-related like Taku were with the Blue King and so on. Sky Raker did the right thing by letting Haruyuki figure out the secret to incarnation by himself, and confirming it later on, but it’s amazingly kind to both help him out and not have any resentment for someone that has wings straight out, compared to herself, who has spent all her time in AW trying to reach the clouds and only ever managing to rake the sky. There’s definitely a bit more to her history with KYH, since the loss of her legs like that is really tragic. I don’t know if she’s practically living in the Unlimited Field to atone or something, but I hope we find out soon.
So we have to ask the question that went through Haru’s mind at the end of the ep – between Silver Crow and Sky Raker, who truly deserves the ability to fly? It’s incredibly hard to say, especially as Sky Raker has prosthetic legs in real life, and is now restricted in AW as well. I don’t know who is more affected by the mental scars caused by their own situations, or the kinds of things Sky Raker did in the past but if I had to comment I’d chalk it down to the true determination needed to soar through the skies, something which I know Haru can relate to from his days of being bullied.
- I hope they don’t randomly get rid of Sky Raker now that her involvement is over, like they did with Niko. Who knows, maybe they might turn up to save the day when things look bleak.
- Next week features Lime Bell, shit going down and some Kuroyukihime fanservice! Always a good sign.