Phantasy Star Online 2 TGS Impression

Sam – After being shuffled into Sega’s booth, Scott and I were both handed a PS4 controller and a character. I admit, I have no prior experience with the Phantasy Star Online series of games, but I had a hunch they were like other games I’ve played in that similar style. This demo had us facing off against a large-scale chimera, and if I am being honest – this was an uninteresting demo. I was indifferent to the same-y combos my huntress with a big ass sword had, and frankly I couldn’t get excited play this. It reminded of Ragnarök Odyssey, which I played on PlayStation 3, and I was bored to tears playing that as well. Those who love to fight large scale beasts and enjoy tedious exercises in dismemberment may have a lot to love here. While this personally wasn’t my jam, I see the appeal for those who love this style of questing and gameplay. I just wish I could have been a bit more excited, given the demo was a straight boss fight without any additional bells and whistles.

Scott – I played a big robot guy with a crazy sword, so points there. After mucking about the lobby and grouping up, our four-player pod were dropped into a boss fight with a chimera-looking beastie that breathes fire and shoots ice out of its paws. The combat has some distinct Monster Hunter vibes, with the ability to lock on to different parts to disable certain attacks and earn better crafting material by knocking off key limbs. The boss had approximately four kabillion hit points and us poor game journos were given a similar amount of auto-revives so we all had time to get a feel for dodging, blocking, and fleeing the creatures’ super moves while learning the best ways to proceed with a counter attack. The controller setup left me wishing for the fingers of a rock-climbing jazz pianist as I clamped the trigger and mashed the square button to activate the multi-hit dash attack that seemed to knock the guy down about half the time, having gleaned that guy-knocking-down was my character’s combat role. After slaying the chimera, we were afforded a chance to loot his corpse for what looked like crafting components and then we were shuffled off to other demo stations.

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6 Responses

  1. Oreno Oreno says:

    I’d like to point out the boss *IS* a Monster Hunter boss, as PSO2 and Monster Hunter Frontier Z are having a collaboration event. Some of the mechanics of that boss in PSO2 are supposed to emulate MHFZ, and are not the same in normal PSO2 gameplay.

  2. Slayer Slayer says:

    I’m a a fan of PSO from my Dreamcast days. I hope this game isn’t as bad as it sounds.

    • Oreno Oreno says:

      Game isn’t bad, but it’s nothing like PSO. I’ve played every title in the series minus Phnatasy Star Nova, and have been playing PSO2 since launch. This series has a hard time really staying to one formula in my experience, Classic, PSO, PSU, and PSO2 all sort of build off each other but ultimately feel like different games connected by the same franchise title.

      I always tell people to not expect anything like a past game when a new “series” of Phantasy Star pops up.

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