Phantasy Star Universe PC/PS2 Shuts Down March 31st, 2010. Where do we go now?

So for today's shocking, but everyone saw it coming  announcement, Phantasy Star Universe will be closing down it's PC/PS2 servers. Due to low population, SEGA has decided to shift focus to the XBOX servers. The XBOX servers although dwindling in players, still has quite a grip on it's population.  It's expected that the XBOX servers will continue to receive updates including the AOTI+ Supplemental Update. Though the announcement did not specifically say this. Edward posted a message on the official site, quote:

Please note that after January 29th 2010, no new PSU subscriptions will be available for purchase for PC/PS2. Those who are subscribed as of that time will be able to play, for free, until service closure.

The schedule is as follows:

• January 29th 2010: MAG+ event begins for PC/PS2 and Xbox 360 servers.

• January 29th 2010: No new PC/PS2 PSU subscriptions will be available for purchase.

• January 29th 2010: Free play for PC/PS2 PSU begins. No more billing cycles will take place on or after this date.

• March 31st 2010: PC/PS2 servers / service closure, the PlayStation2 and PC versions of Phantasy Star Universe online play will not be available after this date, however, please continue to enjoy the Single Player version of the game.

For those who play the Xbox 360 version of Phantasy Star Universe: SEGA will continue to support, in full & with regular updates, this version of Phantasy Star Universe. This includes bringing currently unreleased and anticipated content to the XBox 360 servers. We will be able to provide more details on future Xbox 360 PSU content over the coming weeks and months.

Son in essence PSU Pc/Ps2 servers will be free for January 29th to March 31st, which I guess will allow everyone to say their goodbyes before they leave. What's interesting to note is what Edward says next..

While we are sad to see the PC/PS2 version of Phantasy Star Universe end, the year 2010 is the 10th anniversary of Phantasy Star Online — and this server / service closure is helping to pave the way for bigger and better things for the Phantasy Star franchise in the very near future!

Sakai also shared a somewhat similar statement during his New Year's message. We should continue to see things from the Phantasy Star Series in 2010, considering it's the 10th anniversary of Phantasy Star Online. Does this mean a new flagship title Phantasy Star will be announced?  Does this mean PSPo2 will soon get an announcement for the English release?  We'll just have to wait and see.

[via psu]

Where do we go from here?

There aren't many games out there like Phantasy Star Online. Fortunately, the market for non-targeting, action RPG systems are slowly rising out of Korea and China.

For now most MMOs focus less on action and more on strategic gameplay. This is where a player clicks on an enemy and engages in auto combat. The player may press a sequence of buttons to use various skills. In these MMOs you never see characters roll out of the way, strafe behind the enemy, shoot and run away from a distance. You are pretty much "attached" to an enemy during the entire combat.

Whatever Sega plans to do with the Phantasy Star series, we do at least have some hope for other games that follow in it's footsteps. Here are a few games coming soon for the PC that provide an action oriented, non targetting system.

  • Continent of the 9th
    • Offers a more graphically realistic approach to PSU.
    • Follows in PSU's footsteps with instanced like gameplay.
    • Battle animation tends to be flashy and mimics PSU's style.
    • Limited Character races.
  • TERA Online
    • Beautiful graphics, serene visuals, open world gameplay.
    • Players aim their attacks at enemies.
    • Character Classes/Races similar to PSU.
  • Dragon Nest
    • Instanced gameplay.
    • Gameplay feels ripped out of PSZero

Of course if you are on the handheld market, you can still play Phantasy Star Zero and look forward to Phantasy Star Portable 2, if and when it does come out.


What will Sakai do next?

Shougai PSO posted a quote from Dengeki Magazine regarding an interview about PSO10th Anniversary. In it he says, given that last year's Phantasy Star Portable 2, is seen as the compilation of the series.  The next new thing he wants to do is something incredibly challenging that is "a giant leap", [possibly something extremely different than what we'd expect /something that upgrades the series?] however, he still wants to please the traditional fans.

[via shougai]


Ana has blogged her reactions on the current news, also speculates there might be some new Phantasy Star game in development. Kotaku comments section (view the unpromoted comments) has more reactions.  Other player reactions will be posted here.

Phantasy Star Portable 2: To Love-Ru, Gravure Japan, Fanta Collaborations

Another somewhat jam packed update. This time we'll go through 2 brand new collaborations and yet another Fanta collab. Also we'll take a look at the concept character artwork for "Amelia" (wink wink.)

To Love-Ru Collab

to love ru

Kentaro Yabuki of "To Love-Ru" brings us the 6th manga collaboration. The outfit is called "Magical Princess" and the weapon is "EcoEco Stick-kun". Oh my, this outfit is even more revealing than the Casino Voloyal set.

to love ru1

It sure looks magical…


Gravure Japan


If you are like Kraz and can't get enough of looking at bikini clad women while you're supposed to be working….  Gravure Japan Grandprix models will make an appearance as pinup posters you can place in your room!


Nene Matsuoka as well as four other bikini models will use their seductive poses to trap you inside your room. Sakai also mentions how Emilia and Lumia might appear in bikinis as well. You can obtain these posters by inputting a password which will be revealed December 3rd in a Young Jump magazine (of all places…)


Only in Japan, 13 yr olds pose in bikinis…

[via 4gamer]

Fanta Quiz Battle!

fanta cans

Fanta is back, but this time in a collaboration mission called Fanta Quiz Battle!. This "extra mission" can be downloaded for yours to keep! It's a quiz mission where  1 to 4 players compete and must answer questions related to Fanta. In addition, the Athletic Chance is a field where you must avoid several traps to reach the goal. The scan also shows off the showtime room reform ticket where players can buzz in and answer questions.

  • Prizes from Fanta Quiz Battle
    • Showtime Remodeling Ticket
    • Graline Answer Chair
    • Fanta Can
    • Fanta Seal
    • (Two other unknown prizes)

The Chevalier Fluge parts for Casts can be downloaded  December 9th.


Emilia's Concept


The development of Emilia. Artwork by Mizuno.

Did you know, Emilia's original name was "Amelia"? (Ironically, when we translated the first Famitsu scan of PSPo2 we called her "Amelia".) The name was eventually changed to Emilia for whatever reason.  Emilia's signature "wing" can be seen on all three concepts. They decided to keep the nanotranser on her leg for the final version.

hair color

In the next stage of concepts, Sakai found that having a sad heroine was kind of difficult to advance the story. He decided her character description should be, "a typical careless girl, who doesn't want to reveal the truth about her past." Thus Sakai transformed Emilia again, removing the grim sad look upon her face.

emilia new

In Phantasy Star Universe, the color "blue" was used to represent the Guardians. To contrast this, Emilia has a red outfit. Mizuno also added little headphones with wings to the outfit. At this time it was still undecided on how the hairstyle should be.

emilia hairstyle

They went through several different hairstyles before finally deciding upon the final one.

Emilia of course still has that strange secret seen in the demo and the opening movie. Her body has line patterns when "something" happens to her…

emilia transformation

What is the true purpose of this transformation?

Sakai hopes to show the concepts of other characters. but it appears those may be featured in a future art book. However we do have one other art concept to show you.

magashi concept

Magashi is back in Phantasy Star Portable 2 under a side story mission. It appears he has replaced his old body with a new one.


The old Magashi is left to rot…

  • Chelsea's original name was Sandy.


Phantasy Star Portable 2: Story Mode, Battle Mode, PSO, Moyashimon and Sega Toys Collaboration

Another jam packed update, this time Sakai details the news in the previous Famitsu Magazine with Story Mode, Urgent Missions, and brand new collaborations. At the end of the post you can also see Hi res art of PSO enemies included in this game such as Ill Gill, Sand Rappy, Sinow Beat, and more.

We can also announce another new boss which may or may not have something to do with another PSO boss…


Warning: Spoilers Ahead!

Story Mode Chapter 2

In chapter 2, Crouch requests the player and Emilia to visit the "Crowdog" district of Moatoob, a new tropical rain forest area. Suddenly suddenly the married couple, Tonnio, and Liina show up right in front of them. Tonnio and Liina are actually patrolling the area as free mercenaries.

Within the tropical rain forest, the Kashu tribe has set up a village secluding them from the rest of the world. The Kashu tribe wants to prevent certain individuals from entering the area, so they placed several traps nearby to stop trespassers. The party decides to head into the forest anyway and you as the player will have to avoid traps by using your goggles. Unlike PSU, you are automatically equipped with the goggles and can use them at any time.


If you get caught in one of Kashu's traps, there will be a huge penalty.

As you are passing through a trap, you will meet up with Yuto who will be an enemy due to some misunderstanding. Sakai says he has the strength of a fierce god! Once this is over Tonnio and Liina will look after Yuto and the party will split up for a moment.

Chapter 2 is described as considerably hard, please prepare for it in advance. Now that Story Mode gets harder based on what level you are, I think everyone will have a tough time getting through.


The traps in chapter 2 are actually "gimmicks." In each story mission the player will encounter various gimmicks they must either avoid or overcome. One of the gimmicks mentioned in the Snowy Mountain field was the snowball. There also seems to be a machine gimmick that roams the hallways in Seabed Plant.

**Expect to see a sub event in the city to find out why Tonnio left the Guardians.

Story Mode Chapter 3


In chapter 3 the player will meet with Natsume Shuu, the president of the Inherit company who was the original pioneer in hyperspace research. "Sky Clad" and other corporations within Gurhal invests money into his company's research.


Urgent Mission

urgent mission

Urgent or Emergency Missions show up randomly during multimode or internet multimode only. These missions may include older Phantasy Star Online areas, or the SEED purification missions of Phantasy Star Universe.


photon reflector

It took 3 years for this mission to show up online in PSU JP.



Purify those SEED pods together!


Battle Mode


Two other battle missions are featured. The first one mission has players collecting meseta! You can collect meseta by either killing other players or opening containers that are scattered across the field. Some containers might be located within a trap so be careful!



Another mission has players in a battle royal! What I notice within the screenshot is how each player has a different level, this mission might follow PSO battle rules where the player's level increases based on the amount of times they die.



So we've went through Evangelion, Pizza Hut, and even Fate Stay Night, what else could there be?



First up is the Famitsu shield, I'm sure this won't make it to the localized version. As it's pushed out it, it will display the Famitsu logo for all to see! Sakai will also announce other magazine collaborations in the future.

famitsu weekly


Sega Toys

Your favorite Sega Toys will make an appearance as room items and other goodies in the game. Sega Toys isn't actually owned by SEGA, so for those expecting a cute plush Sonic and Tails doll… Here, have a cute "PA PANDA" instead!

pa panda

Three characters from the Sega Toys company will make an appearance in the game. The green "Tea Dog", "New Tea Dog" and "PA! PANDA".


tea dog madoog

The "Tea Dog" will become a cute little madoog that follows you and casts technics. Tea Dog and New Tea Dog will also make an appearance as a room item. "Pa! Panda" will become a "Pa Panda Table" so you can place your cute little tea dogs on top of it.


Moyashimon: Tales of Agriculture

The cute and cuddly (or even deadly) bacteria from Moyashimon will appear as a aura unit!  Good luck trying to figure out each of their names!


Moyashimon: Aspergillus oryzae and Penicillium chrysogenum.


Phantasy Star Online Enemies

Included below are high res and screenshots of various PSO enemies!





Ill Gill


sand rappy

Sand Rappy


nano dragon

Nano Dragon


sinow bea

Sinow Beat


astark 2


nano dragon 2

poison lily 3

sand rappy 2

sinowbeat 3


Extras and Blog Updates

  • "OLGA DE RAN", a new dragon boss.
  • It is some kind of infected dragon Shougai PSO speculates it could be related to Olga Flow.
  • A health related collaboration item will be revealed soon.

[via pspo2 blog + shougai pso + 4gamer + gpara]