Monday, July 9, 2012

Phantasy Star Online 2 Officially Coming Westward

Nobody believed me when I said it (Okay, several people believed me, shut up), but now it's official:  Phantasy Star Online 2 hits NA PCs in 2013.  It was pretty much a foregone conclusion, of course, since it's a game that a lot of people are going to play if only on the merits of it being Free-to-Play (which means quite a few chances at people throwing money at it through micro-transactions.  Which will happen.  Bitches love micro-transactions) and a lot of players only means good things.  Still, as always, it's nice for these types of things to be official, especially in the face of the hardships that Sega is going through which some might expect would keep them from doing something like this, despite the monumental chance of profit occurring.  Also because that is kind of how Sega rolls, with the whole not doing things that are smart, which has pretty much done poorly for them as you might expect.

Though, the move is not without its critics already, of course, considering that the game actually just released last week on PC in Japan.  As in, full release, final build, etc.  Granted, it will be updated and such, in fact one update is already in the works, but it's an officially released product.  So "Early 2013" seems to be a little late already for some people who are understandably anxious for the game.  These same people worry that the game will be in a constant state of being behind in terms of months for the Non-Japan version of it, which is apparently a practice that occurred with Sega's last real online venture:  Phantasy Star Universe.  I know nothing of it, of course, but I would suppose that if the servers are meant to be region-locked (an unfortunately very real possibility), that such a thing could go on again.  Wouldn't bother me too much, however, since I know precisely one or two people I would ever play PSO with, they're in the same country as me, and I'm sure PSO2 will launch with enough content regardless of it's the exact same as the Japanese launch, or if it has everything incorporated into it at the start and remains at an even update with the other versions.

Also worth wondering about is, of course, the Vita and Mobile versions that have been talked about.  Not -just- because I am obsessed with the Vita, but because they are certainly things that have been announced already and, judging by the comments, are things that are heavily being looked forward to.  Moreso the Vita version than the Mobile, of course, as they will be two very different things, where the Vita version will more or less simply be a mobile version of PSO2, if all goes well.  I do worry that perhaps Sega announced the two versions a little too early, and promised too much, what with saying that the Vita version would allow cross-play (which is not an easy task) as well as promising the Mobile game would connect to the account while offering a more 'social' aspect that they simply haven't gone into since.  Granted, those games, whatever they might be, simply aren't even in the Beta phase or anything, so anything could happen with them.  Still, I don't doubt that they -will- come out, and I really don't doubt (as I didn't doubt this would) they won't make it to the States, as Sega will simply want to make it available for just about anyone who would want to play the game.  Aside from making it on every platform, of course.  That would just be silly.

Phantasy Star Online 2 is pretty much the only MMO I've been completely invested in and interested in since it was announced, and it will, by all accounts, likely be the only MMO I even bother with.  Barring The Old Republic going free-to-play as well and getting ported to non-PC platforms, it'll pretty much be the only MMO I have a real chance at playing, of course, without splurging for a big computer and such.  And that's just my kinda price range, so to speak.  Regardless, I won't be able to experience PSO2 as it first comes out, much to my chagrin, and will simply have to wait for the Vita version, hoping that it will allow for character creation and the like on it, rather than simply being a companion version to the PC game, which I can imagine being an all too real possibility, given the way several Apps have worked for the portable.  However, with the game requiring you be online all the time (unless that changes in development or thereafter), I would assume that it's a full-featured version of the game regardless, which I'm certainly hoping for.

I find it a little hard to say a whole lot about this, as I haven't been paying a lot of attention to PSO2 news, having simply waited for it to be announced for the West.  Even then, it's more one of those things that I can't put into words, so much as she anxiously await, as it'll be like going home again, I suspect.  Sliding into the character of a Cast Hunter, likely, as that's just kinda how I do, will be something that never gets old, and will simply be constantly associated with fond memories.  Though whether nostalgia overshadows what I can expect from PSO2 or not will be something to see.  I certainly hope it won't, but such is the way of these things sometimes, and there's not a whole lot you can do about it.  Aside from, you know, just enjoying it for what it is, which I will need no invitation to do.  Just lemme play it how and where I want to, and I'll be a happy lad, that's for sure.

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