• Ryna

    by Published on Mar 12, 2012 07:53 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. PSO2

    The official Japanese Phantasy Star Online 2 blog was updated with new details about the Sony PlayStation Vita port of Phantasy Star Online 2. The purpose of the new information was to clear up some of the concerns that people had expressed about the Vita version. Here is a summary of the information:

    • Vita Updates - It will be possible to distribute updates and make balance changes to the Vita version.
    • Online Security - Phantasy Star Online 2 will be an online only game. All data will be stored on the servers. Also, the Vita version will use the same security measures as the PC version.
    • 3G Connections - It will be possible to play Phantasy Star Online 2 using a wireless connection or 3G network. However, the connection method for a 3G network will be different.
    • PC/Vita Compatibility - The current plan is to allow PC and Vita players to play together. However, there is a chance that the PC and Vita players maybe separated depending on early testing results.

    Credit goes to Mike for bringing us this news. You can discuss this news in this forum thread.

    23 Comments
    by Published on Mar 9, 2012 08:45 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. PSO2

    Phantasy Star Online 2 for the Sony PlayStation Vita was announced today on the Japanese Sony Vita Tengoku site with additional information being posted on the official Japanese Phantasy Star Online 2 blog. Here is the promotional video:
    [ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-5OMPhKLhXQ[/ame]

    Here is what we know so far:
    • The game is less than 10% complete. It is scheduled for release in 2013.
    • It will use the same servers and character data as the PC version.
    • Gameplay will be online only.
    • It is possible that cross-platform parties between PC and Vita clients will be allowed. This is briefly shown in the video.


    Credit goes to Mike for bringing us this exciting news. You can discuss this news in this forum thread.
    33 Comments
    by Published on Mar 2, 2012 09:11 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. PSO2

    The official Phantasy Star Online 2 blog was updated earlier today with new concept art and information about "Boost Enemies." Boost Enemies have previously appeared in Phantasy Star Zero and Phantasy Star Portable 2. Compared to regular enemies, they have enhanced stats and have improved odds on certain item drops. The screenshot below provides an example of what a boost enemy will look like in Phantasy Star Online 2.

    Phantasy Star Online 2 Boost Enemy Example
    Boost Enemy Example

    Also, concept art was released for the FOmar, RAMarl, and NPC vendors. Be sure to click on the image below to view larger version of the concept art!

    Phantasy Star Online 2 FOmar
    FOmar

    Phantasy Star Online 2 RAmarl
    RAmarl

    Phantasy Star Online 2 Female NPC Vendor
    Female NPC Vendor

    Phantasy Star Online 2 Male NPC Vendor
    Male NPC Vendor

    Credit goes to Mike for bringing us this news. You can discuss this news in this forum thread.

    10 Comments
    by Published on Feb 27, 2012 09:10 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. PSO2

    Concept art for the default RAnewearl costume was posted today on the official Phantasy Star Online 2 blog. Be sure to click on the image below to view larger version of the concept art!

    Phantasy Star Online 2 RAnewearl
    RAnewearl

    Also, a large treasure trove of information from the Phantasy Star Online 2 Alpha 2 test was posted on the Japanese Phantasy Star Online 2 website. This information includes breakdowns on race/job statistics and the most popular items. Mike has translated and posted the information here.

    16 Comments
    by Published on Feb 27, 2012 09:06 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. PSOW

    PSO-World has added 30+ avatars to the new Phantasy Star Online 2 category. To see preview pictures of the new avatars, check out this forum thread. You can use these new forum avatars by going to your User CP and clicking on "Edit Avatar."

    Examples:

    by Published on Feb 17, 2012 07:50 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. PSO2

    Concept art for the default HUcaseal and RAcast costumes were posted today on the official Phantasy Star Online 2 blog. Be sure to click on the images below to view larger versions of the concept art!

    Phantasy Star Online 2 HUcaseal
    HUcaseal

    Phantasy Star Online 2 RAcast
    RAcast

    In addition, the following pieces of information were gleaned from the Phantasy Star Online 2 Alpha 2 Questionnaire:

    • Testers from the first alpha test made up 30% of the population for the second alpha test.
    • Cast creation rates were up thanks to the improved Cast creation options.
    • There were more female characters than male characters.
    • Male Newmans were the least played race/sex combination.
    • 65% of testers used a game controller. The rest used a keyboard and mouse.

    Credit goes to Mike for bringing us this news and translating the questionnaire results. You can discuss this news in this forum thread.

    13 Comments
    by Published on Feb 9, 2012 04:32 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. PSO2

    Concept art for the default RAnewm costume was posted today on the official Phantasy Star Online 2 blog. Be sure to click on the image below to view larger version of the concept art!

    Phantasy Star Online 2 RAnewm
    RAnewm

    Credit goes to Mike for bringing us this news. You can discuss this concept art in this forum thread.

    25 Comments
    by Published on Jan 31, 2012 08:47 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. PSO

    Massively, an enthusiast MMO community site, published an article today featuring a retrospective on Phantasy Star Online. The article features several quotes from Yuji Naka and provides a brief history of the game. If you are a former or current Phantasy Star Online player, it is worth reading.

    You can discuss this article in our Phantasy Star Online forum.

    9 Comments
    by Published on Jan 29, 2012 03:43 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. PSO2

    PSO-World staff member HUnwearl_Meira had the chance to participate in the recent Alpha 2 testing for Phantasy Star Online 2. He has written up a detailed report on the latest Phantasy Star Online 2 build. Be sure to click on the "Read More" link to read his report!

    HUnewearl_Meira's Report

    The first two sessions of the second Alpha Test for Phantasy Star Online 2 have come and gone, as I am writing this. Iím not accustomed to waking up in the late afternoon, but I have no regrets concerning the sleep depravation I incurred over the last couple of days. The Alpha testís schedule is well-planned for a Japanese audience, I think-- or at least, the times looked pretty damned reasonable, if theyíd been for a local time zone. California is 17 hours behind Japan, however, which means that a well-placed Friday-evening session in Japan is a late-starting Thursday-night session here. I told myself that I can sleep when Iím dead, and pressed on ahead.

    The first impression of the game came early on, long before the servers went live. As soon as the client was installed, naturally I fired it up, knowing I couldnít play. The introduction video started with a HUmar strolling down a futuristic metal hallway (weíll know weíve reached the future when all of our buildings are made of exposed metal-- cartoons and science fiction have made this abundantly clear). His stroll eventually terminated upon his arrival at what initially appears to be a very cold private pool, which he proceeds to jump into with an unnecessarily elaborate leap. He crystallized as he entered the depths, which seems like something to be concerned about, but he clearly expected it. This was the teleporter technology featured in the game.

    The HUmar shot down to the planet below, and in a very energetic sequence of running through the woods and fighting monsters, heís very soon joined by a FOnewearl, a HUnewearl and a RAcast. Itís all very exciting, but like any good introduction video, its ultimate fate was to get skipped over, in favor of getting into the game which its meant to hype up.

    The short statement to make, is that the game is good. Itís incomplete, and all of the menus may as well have been labeled with squiggly lines for all the Japanese I understand, but the game is good, nevertheless. The game holds tight to the conventions weíve expected from online Phantasy Star titles. Our races include Humans, Newmans and Casts, and our classes are Hunter, Ranger and Force. This time, there are no limitations concerning who can have what class, but then, we all knew this long before this Alpha test came about.

    It took a while to figure out how to get down to the planet. I was a little disappointed that one cannot simply port down and start killing things, as we all got used to in the original. You need first, to visit the Quest Counter to accept a quest. With this done, you may then use the warp to get to the vestibule containing the warp pool seen in the introduction video.

    Using the original PSO as a reference point, itís very much as though the lobbies have absorbed much of the space and functionality that was once on Pioneer 2ís Hunterís Deck. Shops and quest counters are found in the lobby, in addition to other service desks specific to this game. The vestibule also contains something like a vending machine, as well as a device which functions as some sort of a lightweight quest counter, and a third giving you access to your bank. When your party has collected and youíre ready to grind, you just jump into the pool and youíll be whisked away to your destination.

    The most striking thing I noticed, is how energetic the gameplay is, compared to previous games. PSO and PSU were Action RPGs, but they were relatively slow-paced. PSO2 really focuses on the Action part of that genre, not settling for merely being an RPG with real-time, two-dimensional combat. For the first time, we can jump, but also significantly, we can dash as well. Where a Booma from PSO might pop up out of the ground, lazily think, ďWell, I guess I should slap this guy,Ē and groggily shuffle toward you, the monsters in PSO2 will chase you down, and try to out-flank you. In combat, youíll find itís a good idea to keep moving, as a stationary target will be pummeled soundly.

    There are no Boomas to be found, but weíve got some kind of wolf to deal with, again. Their behavior isnít unfamiliar, but they wonít circle you, as they once did. Another common foe, is some kind of a giant, four-legged spider, which makes me think of Starcraftís Zerg, or the bugs from Starship Troopers. The new Booma seems to be derived from PSO Episode 2ís Gibbons. Whatever theyíre called, the smaller apes like to jump-kick you from a hand-stand, the larger apes will tear boulders out of the ground to hit you with. Your best defensive tool will be your dash, dive-roll or teleport (depending on whether youíre a Hunter, Ranger or Force, respectively), and I found it interesting to note that if youíre quick, you can shoot a flung rock out of the air.

    Overall, PSO2ís gameplay seems like a pretty natural evolution of what weíve seen before. Most of us who played PSO were rather disappointed with PSUís gameplay, despite the inclusion of some pretty neat features in the game. Sega seems to have learned their lessons there (as though PSP2 left us with any doubt in this regard), and I think theyíve improved things. In the past, one class was very much like another, differing chiefly in the type of weapon used. In PSO2, while the fundamentals remain consistent, each class has its own paradigm. The addition of a Third Person Shooter mode makes Rangering rather more satisfying, but Hunters will find fighting in that mode to be rather cumbersome. A Force may also be inclined toward the TPS mode if they use Foie an awful lot, but I suspect that the differing mechanics of each Technique will mean that Forces will be hopping modes with some considerable frequency. The practical result is that each class is almost like a different game, entirely.

    I created three characters, who should all be easily recognizable to those whoíve followed my work: Meira, Mota Storm and Crankshaft. The level of customization is as incredible as weíve previously been lead to believe. Iím not satisfied with what I worked out for Meira, though thatís a failing of my own haste to get into the meat and potatoes of the game, rather than a limit of the system. Iím hoping for some more alternatives for costumes as well, as Iíve never really pictured Meira as the kind of girl to run around with both ass cheeks exposed. Crankshaft came out rather good, as creating a character with a perpetually goofy expression turned out to be much easier than I first anticipated. Finally, I was happiest with Mota Storm, as my criteria for him was simplest. He came out big, bulky, and in the colors of Desert camouflage.

    The largest character creation issue seems to be in costuming. Thereís a bit more mix-and-match for the Casts, but the fact remains that thereís really only a handful of options. Fortunately, a costume shop exists in the lobby, though the door is shut for the alpha test. This of course, means that we wonít really be able to tell one class from another by uniform, but I imagine that many of us wonít regard that as any sort of a big deal.

    Iíll note that Mags are absent from this Alpha test, but theyíve got a spot reserved right in the middle of the main, in-game menu. I look forward to seeing how that feature works out. Weíve been a long time without our floaty companions, and itíll be nice to see them make a return.

    It could be that itís just still new and shiny, but Iím pretty satisfied with the game. I think most of us will be. I donít know that PSO2 will usher in a new age where PSO brushes on the popular and the mainstream, as it did ten years ago-- I think that largely relies on how Sega handles its marketing. What I do know, is that thereís a lot of potential for something fantastic, here. Any Phanatic should be able to find something he likes out of this game.

    Thatís what I think on the subject. Iíd invite anyone with something to say on the matter to join us in our PSO2 General forum, and speak their mind.

    17 Comments
    by Published on Jan 2, 2012 03:42 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. PSOW

    The voting period for 10th Anniversary Fan Memorial Illustation and Literary Contests has ended. The results have been tallied and PSO-World is pleased to announce the winners for the Fan Gallery vote:


    Also, the entries were evaluated by a panel of three non-biased judges. Here are the results of the judges' selection:


    The winners will receive the following prizes:
    • Illustration Contest - Fan Gallery Vote
      1. Phantasy Star Online Art Book OR Kotobukiya Elenor Model Kit, Rappy Armband, and Custom Avatar
      2. Rappy T-Shirt, Rappy Armband, and Custom Avatar
      3. Rappy Armband
    • Literary Contest - Fan Gallery Vote
      1. Phantasy Star Online Book of Hunters, Rappy Armband, and Custom Avatar
      2. Rappy T-Shirt, Rappy Armband, and Custom Avatar
      3. Rappy Armband
    • Illustration Contest - Judges' Vote
      1. Phantasy Star Online Art Book OR Kotobukiya Elenor Model Kit, Rappy Armband, and Custom Avatar
      2. Rappy T-Shirt , Rappy Armband, and Custom Avatar
      3. Rappy Armband and Custom Avatar
    • Literary Contest - Judges' Vote
      1. Phantasy Star Online Book of Hunters, Rappy Armband, and Custom Avatar
      2. Rappy T-Shirt , Rappy Armband, and Custom Avatar
      3. Rappy Armband and Custom Avatar


    PSO-World would like to thank everyone that submitted an entry and voted. The entries were extremely outstanding. You helped to make this a successful contest. You can post your thoughts about the contest by posting in this thread.
    9 Comments
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