The Spring 2012 anime season has only just begun in Japan and we’re already seeing licenses for the shows here in North America. VIZ has licensed the rights to simulcast the new sci-fi series Accel World at VIZanime.com alongside the Japanese broadcasts. The first episode is already available on VIZ’s streaming site as well as Hulu, and new episodes will be posted every Friday throughout the series’ 24-episode run.

Accel World follows Haruyuki Arita, a student who has trouble socializing and making friends at school. Because of his social problems, Arita prefers the virtual worlds offered by his games to real life. One day, Kuroyukihime, the most popular student in the school tells him about a new program called “Brain Burst” that changes his life. Arita joins the massive online game in hopes of finding the real purpose behind the “Brain Burst” technology.

Accel World is based on a series of light novels written by Reki Kawahara. The series has spawned both a manga series as well as several video games in addition to the new anime title. VIZ has not commented on whether the license for Accel World extends to a future DVD/Blu-ray release, but we will report on it as soon as we have word.

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