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Grimgar Fantasy and Ash, the only anime I've ever watched that punched you in the feels 4 episodes in.
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Its a lot like SAO, but it actually follows the actual Healer-Support-DPS instead of one dude being a super bad ass soloer. lol They just don't know that they are in a game, and I don't know if its a game, though I assume it is.
I've seen a lot of gut punches, but not so early... then again I'm use to longer series that are more than the 12-13 eps that I've been marathoning the last few days. What is crazy is, I was so invested in the story it really felt like more than 4 eps had passed. There is a lot more mystery behind it than SAO where you're told up front what is happening and why.
You'd probably enjoy Log Horizon then, similar premise to this and SAO but no perma-death for characters that die (instead they lose their memories of the real world). They're kind of in a hybrid real world and game world (it's explained in the show). You honestly don't even find out whats really happening (the Light Novels are nowhere near done yet and I don't remember what books S1 and S2 adapt) until the end of season 2 and even then it's a very vague understanding. They also keep the party dynamic and go even further in-depth with it (and I mean in-depth with, there's full fledged raids going on in the show at some points). They also do a very good job of explaining classes, what they do, sub-jobs available to classes, etc. Very interesting show and glad I overlooked the whole "Sounds like SAO but worse" mentality I had when I first heard of it (in fact I think it's a much better thought out show then SAO (I love SAO but LH has so much more going for it imo)). Sentai has the rights over here but it can be streamed on Crunchyroll I believe.
I'll definitely have to check it out (if I can find fansubs for it).
I'll def have to check it out then. Interesting about the memories because in Grimgar they start out with no memories of their life in the real world. They say things from it and then wonder what made them say it. Have you seen Overlord? I was thinking about watching that one sometime soon. I think its about an dead MMO that one player keeps going or something.
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