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Alternative Titles

English: .hack//Sign
Japanese: .hack//SIGN


Type: TV
Episodes: 26
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Apr 4, 2002 to Sep 26, 2002
Premiered: Spring 2002
Broadcast: Thursdays at Unknown
Studios: Bee Train
Source: Original
Genres: GameGame, Sci-FiSci-Fi, AdventureAdventure, MysteryMystery, MagicMagic, FantasyFantasy
Duration: 24 min. per ep.
Rating: PG-13 - Teens 13 or older


Score: 6.991 (scored by 7046870,468 users)
1 indicates a weighted score.
Ranked: #36772
2 based on the top anime page. Please note that 'Not yet aired' and 'R18+' titles are excluded.
Popularity: #920
Members: 156,427
Favorites: 1,344
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Jun 21, 2008
Mashu (All reviews)
.Hack//Sign is a single part in the Project .Hack franchise, one that combines novels, manga, TV anime and OVA's to form one grand narrative with characters and events happening not only chronologically, but simultaneously as well. The review below is written from the franchise point of view, and as an standalone anime.

The general consensus of Hack//Sign is that the story's boring, there is almost no action and it doesn't make fast progress. While some of these points are quite true, the story is one of character development and interaction. The viewer learn more about every side character through their interaction with the rest of the read more
Dec 8, 2009
Arowind91 (All reviews)
To the many people who play them, video games, can be a form of escapism from the real world. What could be more stress relieving than diving into a fantasy world where you assume the role of the character in the game? It sounds very tempting but if one should stay too long in the virtual world you could lose yourself in it with no way to return to the real world. In the worst case scenario you may forget which world is real and which is fake.

That is the premise of .Hack//Sign. .Hack//Sign is a part of the .Hack series which surrounds the read more
Oct 22, 2014
literaturenerd (All reviews)

Before SAO, before Log Horizon, there was .hack//Sign. This was the anime that started the "trapped in an MMORPG" craze in anime. Although it is far superior in quality to SAO and Log Horizon, it somehow has an average rating almost 2 full points lower. Allow me to explain why this is a great injustice!

Story and characters: 7/10

The story will no doubt seem familiar at this point, because so many series have ripped off .hack. After a computer virus devastates the internet, a new web system is created and shortly after a massive MMORPG using virtual reality is born as the brain child of a read more
Apr 22, 2010
kanye_west (All reviews)

Okay, well, this anime is kind of awful.

Chronologically, this isn't even the first in the .hack// timeline, because Bandai keeps tacking shit onto this franchise. Anyway, it's basically about what would happen if Shinji Ikari played video games. Tsukasa, the main character, wakes up in The World, the first Virtual Reality MMORPG since some supervirus stomped all over the internet. He can't remember how he got there or who he is, and soon discovers that he can't even log out of the damn game. After running into some douchebags who want to jump his ass for supposedly hacking, he acquires some read more
Jun 21, 2012
Chihiri (All reviews)
.hack//SIGN is perhaps not exactly what you may think it is, but I think you'll be pleasantly surprised. It has hardly any action, contrary to what it may seem like, and the main focus of this story is on the characters. But it is done in such an appealing way that I personally found myself not wanting to sleep until I found out how it ended. I'll warn you: .hack//SIGN isn't flashy and exciting; but it does have some fantastic qualities to make up for that fact. So let's break this down.

.hack//SIGN is about a virtual reality MMORPG ( Massive Multi-player Online Role Playing Game read more
Oct 18, 2013
Area51 (All reviews)
This is a review compiled by the many members of the VIA (Value In Anime) Graveyard Division. All members who have worked on this review are mentioned at the bottom. In addition, this review will also contain a “Value in the Anime” section detailing life lessons and values that make this anime worth watching.
.hack//sign isn't exactly new. Known for it's slow pace, it has a reputation as a poorly paced, often boring show. While this is true, to an extent, there is still value in this anime--life lessons that make it worth the time you're willing to invest in it.

Story: .hack//sign is a slow read more
Nov 1, 2008
Stormy_77 (All reviews)
As a former hard core gamer, I had high expectations of this series which has been languishing in my list of stuff to someday get to watching. So I started viewing this intending to finish all the .hack series.


The premise is exciting - one player in "The World" is suddenly unable to log out - why? The mystery gets deeper and deeper as we are pulled into his life and the life of the other characters (in game and in the real world) who either want to help him, want to solve the mystery or have some other hidden agendas of their own.

The set up read more
Feb 24, 2010
AuronSurmount (All reviews)
I came into .Hack//Sign with mixed reviews and no knowledge of the characters or the plot / setting. I was pretty skeptical because a couple of my really good friends said it was very boring. Then again I had friends that said it was amazing. With that being said, i just had to see for myself.

Right off the bat I need to address one HUGE CON of this anime. The use of flashbacks and how many episodes they used. The large majority of .hack//sign was used having flashbacks. But not even stuff that we haven't seen yet. There was one scene (that was several read more
Mar 31, 2008
Roostophe (All reviews)
In early 2004, 3 1/2 years before my foray into anime, I bought a PS2 game called .hack//Infection. I didn't particularly enjoy the game that much, and it became lost behind the newer games that came and were added to my ever-growing video game collection.

Fast forward to November 2007, and I stumble across .hack//SIGN while flicking through the channels one night. I decided to watch it, and I became immediately hooked.

One of the strong points of the .hack video game was the story, and the story to SIGN was also brilliantly written. I also loved the art and the characters were a lovable motley crew, read more
May 22, 2014
FullmetalCowboy (All reviews)
Critic’s Log - Earthdate: May 22, 2013. Review #87: .Hack//SIGN

In the real world, I enjoy watching anime, in “The World”... I really don’t want to talk about this.

Username: FC
Password: .#@ck//$!&N

Welcome to The World

In the near future, there is a popular virtual reality online role playing game, characters try to play out the goals they set for entertainment and also passing of time. It is called “The World” and it is an RPG with a setting of monsters, player characters and dungeons. Tsukasa is a detached and introverted player and individual that has a number of mysteries about his player character. Many weird events surround Tsukasa read more
Mar 10, 2010
kekekeKaj (All reviews)
First impressions of "Hack Sign"... stunningly good animation and excellent music.

Unfortunately there's not much more to it. This is an anime with a weak story line that contain more holes than Swiss cheese, and tries to make up for it by pretending to be deep. What they don't seem to realise is that there's more to being deep than having the characters do little more than stand around looking thoughtful and utter the occasional grunt whilst elegant music drifts past in the background. You need GOOD dialogue and storyline to be deep, and as hard as this anime tries, it doesn't have either. "Hack Sign" read more
Apr 29, 2008
ShadowBlazer3000 (All reviews)
I think this is one of the best Animes, amongst many others. .hack//SIGN intrigued me, and actually made me wonder. Not to mention the occasional chill sent down my spine. While it may be confusing it beats most clichéd RPG-Based Animes and Fantasy base Anime out there. The cliff hangers leave you waiting and wanting more. Even though it doesn't have so much action in it I think it is great. Beats the crap out of Pokemon, and Final Fantasy. What I love about this is it's so mysterious, and dark, and unpredictable. Unlike with Final Fantasy, Zelda, Pokemon, Yu-Gi-Oh and so on. The music read more
Sep 22, 2007
Cytoplasmic (All reviews)
Generally, depending on the person, .hack//sign can be either extremely boring and a drag, or the best mix of story/sound/character that they have seen. Personally, it qualifies as one of my most favorite animes. When i first ventured into it, I wasn't expecting much. After all, the games for ps2 sucked. Soon, I found the character development and color of Tsubasa and her peers to be interesting. True, at times, the droning music and dull colors may make people fall asleep, but this tone is what characterizes .hack. It is meant to be in a dark environment, making it read more
Aug 30, 2009
ycart59 (All reviews)
Ah, .hack//SIGN. I might not be finished with it yet, but I am enjoying this series sooo much. It is my top priority right now, along with Sukisho and Majin Tantei Nougami Neuro, to watch this, I just love it that much.

Story (9): This is basically about a video game called The World and the characters that play this game. It's focused around Tsukasa, a male character that can't log out of the game. There are some things that have happened in the beginning that I still don't understand, but it's things that I can overlook. I find the story to be quite original, because read more
Jan 5, 2021
IhateHAISE (All reviews)
Sign was one of the first in the .hack // series that I watched, and I can say that I am completely disappointed. I already knew the problems of this anime and really thought I could ignore it, it used that proposal of the MC stuck in the online game, which makes me already excited, even because I like the style. Yes, let's go to the review!

1 - Story [6/10] - As I said earlier, I like Sign's proposal, but I don't think it was done well. The worst point of this anime is the fact that the development is extremely slow, the dense dialogue read more
Jan 25, 2016
Deago (All reviews)
"Do you know the story of the Little Mermaid? The princess who reveived beautiful legs...but lost her voice so she could see the prince. But the prince married someone else...and the mermaid disappeared in bubbles of light.. She shouldn't have wished to leave the sea. Don't you think so?"
What comes to your mind when you see an "RPG anime"? A generic shounen anime full of action/fighting with annoying kids and unrealistic teenagers characters playing the game so seriously for the sake of beating the game or defeating some kind of boss or antagonist cliché, right?
But have you ever seen:
-An rpg anime with more dialogue and read more
Nov 16, 2013
IamWEB (All reviews)
Well I almost don't know what to say about .hack//Sign, there was so much I loved about this show and then so much that made me want to claw out my eyes. Lets just dive into this.

.hack//Sign takes place in a virtual reality MMORPG called "The World". Players in the world have different classes and play styles that they choose from and play. They all can play the game differently. We focus in on a player named Tsukasa who is trapped in The World, unable to log out. Tsukasa doesn't know why this is happening and neither does anyone else. The story progresses as Tsukasa read more
Nov 18, 2007
JackCox (All reviews)
Okay, I generally cannot watch anything Studio Beetrain produces, Most of the stuff they put out generally is uninteresting or boring, I watched both Noir and Madlax completely through, Noir was boring, but Madlax was fantastic. The .hack series is a major major letdown, I personally feel that a series like this has way too many complicated terms and sometimes stops people from trying to follow the story, Maybe the story was just ahead of it's time but I feel that it needed to be stronger and unfortunately it is very easy to get lost, but I wish the story was put into a language read more
Oct 9, 2011
eleventy12 (All reviews)
If you like a slow paced story, focussing on the characters with thoroughly immersive music, you will greatly enjoy this anime. If you like fast paced stories with action scenes led forward by the storyline, this anime is not for you. For those whom the rest of this review is not yet redundant, feel free to read on.

The story is well crafted; while it appears the story is light-hearted, underneath it all it is quite dark. The theme of escapism runs throughout the series, and this is synced well with the aesthetics. The World is colourful and diverse, with canal based cities, green cliff-tops above read more
Jun 19, 2011
HangJarrel (All reviews)
Before I start off with this review I'd like to point out that I haven't played any of the .hack video games, so this view is directly from a person that has no background information from the video games.

This .hack is definitely different but similar in it's own accord compared to the other .hack series. The story is very plain and boring when read on paper, but really think about it, if you try to imagine the events happening in the real world it would be pretty messed up and interesting, the one thing I really liked about this read more