Phantasy Star Online is an action RPG for the Sega Dreamcast and PC. As the first online console RPG, it was a highly anticipated release from Sonic Team. It allowed four players to play cooperatively through four zones (Forest, Caves, Mines, and Ruins). It also enabled players from different regions to group together with an in-game word selection system that automatically translated phrases to the party members' native languages.
In the year 3060, after years of war and the destruction of the planet Coral, the Alliance of Nations send out probes to the far reaches of the galaxy. In the year 3068 they found a planet that could sustain life, it was named Ragol.
A ship, Pioneer 1, was launched to establish a colony on the planet in 3076. In 3077 Pioneer 1 lands on Ragol and research begins on the planet and the Central Dome is constructed to be the colonies headquarters. Hunter Rico Tyrell is put in charge of the Surface Exploration Team.
In 3082 contruction is finished on the initial colony and a message is sent to Coral letting them know it is time for Pioneer 2 to be launched. The next year as Pioneer 2 begins its long journey to Ragol a large number of the once peaceful animal population begin attacking colonists on the planet.
To answer the new danger Rico Tyrell establishes the Hunters to protect Ragol's colonists and find the cause of the animals sudden rage. In 3084 Pioneer 2 enters orbit around Ragol. Just as the ship establishes contact an explosion inside the Central Dome occurs. The Principal, leader of Pioneer 2 then proceeds to send out his own Hunters to investigate.
PSO has 3 main classes (Hunter, Ranger, Force) which are then broken down into Subclasses based on race (Human, Newman, Cast) and sex (Male/Female).
Humans are the most balanced of the races, they can use both Techniques (magic) and melee attacks. Newman are primarily magic users and have very low attack strength with melee weapons and low defensive stats. Casts are the robots of the universe, they cannot use magic but have high defense and the strongest melee attacks in the game.
These are then broken down by job. Hunter is the melee damage dealer and uses short range, high damage weapons. Rangers deal moderate damage over long range with guns. Forces are technique users and are considered a support class, although at high levels they are capable of dealing area of effect damage.
|A Female Human Force.
FOmarls have higher attack power than other forces. This made them competent up close and a more balanced class.
|A Female Newman Force.
Fonewearls have very limited melee potential but they excel in both attack and support techniques. Out of all classes they have the highest mental strength which allows them to have more technique points then any other class.
|A Male Newman Force.
FOnewms have the highest level attack techniques in the game and the lowest defense as well. The can deal massive damage at higher levels but are difficult to play as because they can become overwhelmed very quickly.
|A Male Cast Hunter.
HUcasts are the strongest melee class in the game and deal mindblowing damage at high levels. Like other casts, they cannot use techniques.
|Male Human Hunter.
HUmars are the most balanced of all characters. They have good defense and evasion and can deal high levels of damage with both melee and ranged weapons. They can use low to mid level attack and support techniques.
|A Female Newman Hunter.
HUnewearls are better with techniques then their hunter counterparts but deal less damage both ranged and up close.
|A Female Cast Ranger.
RAcaseals have the highest defense power out of all ranger types but cannot use techniques.
|A Male Cast Ranger.
RAcasts have the highest potential attack power of all rangers. They cannot use techniques.
|A Male Human Ranger.
RAmars have the most balanced stats of the ranger classes. Not highly skilled up close with melee weapons though. They can use multiple support and attack techniques but not with the same success as their force counterparts.
PSO has a multitude of weapon types. There are three broad categories: Melee, Ranged, and Caster.
|Claw - Short range melee weapon worn on the right hand.
|Dagger - A short range melee weapon with very high attack speed and moderate damage.
|Fist - A short range melee weapon.
|Katana - Rare melee weapon with high damage and moderate range and speed.
|Partisan - A wide range melee weapon. Most partisan's deal moderate damage, have an extended range, and are quicker than other wide range weapons.
|Saber - A standard melee weapon, has moderate damage and moderate attack speed. Also moderate range.
|Sword - A wide area of attack melee weapon that typically deals high damage while sacrificing attack speed.
|Twin Saber - Fast attack speed with moderate damage and range.
There are four areas in the original P.S.O. Players start in the Forest and work their way through the Caves, Mines, and finally the Ruins. Each area has between 2 to 4 sections that the players must travel through on their way to each boss at the end of an area.
The forest zone is the first area the players are given access to, it is a fairly simple area with only 2 sections. Players must traverse through the forest on their way to the planets outpost. The boss fight takes place inside the abandoned colony.
The boss of the Forest area is simply referred to as "Dragon." The Dragon first attacks with fire from both the ground and in flight. Later in the fight it will dive underground and tunnel towards the player.
In the second area the players have gone underground. The Caves have a variety of reptile and insect themed enemies and a lot of the rooms incorporate lava in one way or another. The mini-boss in the caves is an odd creature called Pan Arms that splits into two halfway through the fight.
The boss fight in the Caves area takes place on a moving platform. The boss swims either alongside, in front of, or behind the players platform. De Rol Le throws projectiles and can shoot a beam at the players while they attempt to defeat it. Ranged attacks are very useful for this battle.
The mines features robotics enemies, some ranged and some melee. The mini-boss in the mines is a large mech called Garanz that has a variety of ranged attacks.
Vol Opt is mostly stationary, in fact the only movement it does is rotate while aiming at the players. In order to defeat Vol Opt players must attack the glowing blue portions while avoiding his primary and secondary attacks.
The Ruins is easily the largest area of the four and features the biggest variety of enemies. The mini-boss in the ruins is a Centaur-like creature that charges across the room towards the players.
Dark Falz, being the final boss, is capable of dealing massive amounts of damage with both ranged attacks and long reaching melee attacks. He has two forms, the first of which is a grotesque creature with multiple tentacles, while the second has a more god-like appearance and is fought far above the original arena.
On the lower difficulties players only see the first form of Dark Falz, in order to fight Dark Falz in his final form players must be on the higher difficulty levels.
Mags are support creatures that follow you around as long as you have one equipped. Every character receives one Level 1 Mag at the start of each game. Players can raise their mag into many different forms by feeding it the in-game items. Each class can raise different types of mags as well. What you feed a Mag will determine its final form as well as what types of powers and abilities it has. These powers range from high level attacks and support to randomly casted spells such as Resta (healing) or Shifta and Deband (attack and defense). From time to time a Mag can also revive a fallen character.
Phantasy Star Online used a globally compatible internet time system known as '.beats' (24 Hours divided into 1000 beats). It was implemented to aid users setting meeting times with other players from around the world, meaning a time of 'n' beats could be set ('n' being the number of beats), instead of having to work out each other's time zones.
Other Technical Info
- 1 Player
- Modem Support/ Online Multiplayer
- VMU required: 45 blocks, 1 Character Per VMU
- VGA Box Compatible
- Keyboard Support
- Jump Pack Compatible