Let’s face it, Sword Art Online: Alicization Lycoris released in a disappointing state. I’ve covered this in detail in our technical review as well as our official review, but it still bears mentioning here. There are numerous problems from janky camera movement, clunky controls, unbearably long loading times, framerate drops, crashes, poor optimization, and various multiplayer bugs. Still, we might be getting some good news because a fix for FPS drops, autosaves, and other bugs is due to arrive later this month.
— 二見鷹介＠SAOゲームの人。世界が決して、君を忘れない。 (@yousuke_futami) July 14, 2020
Sword Art Online: Alicization Lycoris – Incoming FPS and multiplayer bug fixes
The tweet comes from Sword Art Online: Alicization Lycoris producer Yousuke Futami. Now, I’m not fluent in Japanese, but a rough translation (via Google Translate) suggests that there would be fixes for PCs and consoles. The patch for the PC might come sooner (expected on July 22). The Xbox fix (and possibly the PlayStation 4’s), meanwhile, might get slightly delayed (expected on July 27).
There are also additional notes from Sword Art Online: Alicization Lycoris‘ official website. Again, keep in mind that what you’ll see below is just a rough translation:
In online multiplayer, when the player whose progress is progressing becomes the host and matching is done while loading the map, the progress of the guest player itself may change. If the displayed “Main Quest” is different from the one you were proceeding with, restart the application without saving. Because it is saved even if you change area, please restart the application on the spot without selecting “End of communication.” Please note that if you actually save, you will have to start over from chapter save.
Remedy: Enjoy multiplayer with the game cleared, or wait until the correction patch scheduled for late July is delivered.
What actually happens sometimes in multiplayer (and why I’ve avoided the feature) might be one of the wonkiest systems I’ve seen in the game. It’s actually possible for players to encounter quest bugs that prevent progression when the host advances the game, all without another player getting the completion for previous parts.
For now, you should only use the multiplayer function after beating the game. If you encountered a multiplayer bug, you’d have to restart the entire chapter (losing hours in the process).
As for the other issues that’ll get sorted out, we’ll see some FPS/framerate improvements, camera behavior tweaks, and changes to the autosave system. Hopefully, the fix will make autosaves more frequent so players don’t get sent back to the beginning of a sequence with multiple boss fights if they die halfway through or if the game crashes during a cutscene.
There’s also another tidbit for those playing on PC/Steam:
The operation may become unstable, but if Vertical sync is turned off in the title screen> Graphic settings, the symptom will improve.
*Operation may become unstable, so please save frequently.
The overall experience in Sword Art Online: Alicization Lycoris is already marred by a number of technical mishaps which has led to loading time quick fixes and FPS workarounds. An actual patch from the devs, especially those that get rid of nasty crashes, would be more than welcome.