Note: iOS 9 + Facebook users w/ trouble scrolling: #super sorry# we hope to fix it asap. In the meantime Chrome Mobile is a reach around
hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts

Phantasy Star Online 2

TGS: Phantasy Star Online 2 on the Vita is a great fit

3:30 PM on 09.22.2012 // Elliot Gay

I've put somewhere around 70 hours into the PC version of Phantasy Star Online 2. Despite being free to play, it's a fun and complex multiplayer title that's been getting a steady stream of updates since release. Having played since the Japanese beta, I was excited to finally get a chance to check out the PS Vita version of the game, due for release early next year in Japan. For those of you unaware, PSO2 for the Vita is the full PC game, except playable on Sony's little powerhouse of a machine.

Fortunately for me, the lines were incredibly short on the first day of Tokyo Game Show and I was able to get into the demo area after waiting a brief ten minutes. I sat down with three other gentlemen who also had experience playing PSO2, and we dived right into the demo.

Much to my surprise, Phantasy Star Online 2 feels like it was made for the Vita.

The last time Phantasy Star Online 2 was shown in any capacity was during the Vita Game Heaven online event back in March. At the time, it was in an early state and the frame rate was an absolute mess. Half a year later and any concerns I had about the stability of PSO2 have been thrown out the window. Sega has done a miraculous job of replicating the PC version of the game. 

The demo had us select our race and class right off the bat from a list of preconfigured characters. I decided to roll with a Cast ranger, proficient at long-range projectile combat. The demo mission had us exploring the first area of the game, a dense forest filled with wolf monsters, flying creatures and giant apes. I was immediately struck by how clean the visuals were despite the game running at what seemed to be a fairly stable 30 frames per second. There was some minor slowdown when giant monsters were on the screen, but it was never intrusive or distracting. While the actual level of detail on the environments and characters was a bit lower than what I'm used to on the PC, it still looked great on the OLED screen. As a Vita title, there's no denying that Phantasy Star Online 2 looks great. 

Combat is as simple and fun as ever, with the square and triangle buttons assigned to your basic and secondary fire, respectively. Phantasy Star Online 2's combat relies heavily on timing and rhythm, with a colored circle that closes in your character after every strike. Hitting the attack button at the right time will result in the chance to continue your combo and build up more energy for your skills.

As in the PC version, skills and items are lined up in the row at the bottom of the screen. Instead of using a mouse to select from the various options, you can simply tap the icons directly with your finger. For the most part, the system works well, but every now and then I'd have to tap an icon multiple times because of how small it was. The d-pad is regulated to various hot key options that I was told you'd be able to customize as you like.

As me and my companions proceeded through the demo mission, I was taken aback by how smoothly the multiplayer ran, with nothing noticeable in the way of lag. This was especially impressive during the boss encounter, a battle with a giant rockbear and several ape monsters. While putting down the beast was a cinch since the four of us had clearly defeated the creature dozens of times on the PC, playing it on the Vita felt like a new experience.

After beating the Rockbear, the demo ended and we were herded out of the booth. Before leaving, I confirmed with a Sega representative that you'd be able to use the same character across all three versions of the game.

I was a bit concerned that Phantasy Star Online 2 for the Vita would be a throwaway project, but as it stands I'm convinced they know what they're doing with this port. The fact that it will be a free download when it releases next year is even better, and one can only hope that Sega confirms a western release for this version.



Elliot Gay, Contributor
 Follow Blog + disclosure Tips
Elliot Gay lives in Japan and spends most of his time writing about Japanese pop culture for Japanator.com. He can also be found writing about men in suits on occasion as well. more   |   staff directory



 Setup email comments

Unsavory comments? Please report harassment, spam, and hate speech to our community fisters, and flag the user (we will ban users dishing bad karma). Can't see comments? Apps like Avast or browser extensions can cause it. You can fix it by adding *.disqus.com to your whitelists.

destructoid's previous coverage:
Phantasy Star Online 2


View all:powered by:  MM.Elephant

Ads on destructoid may be purchased from:



Please contact Crave Online, thanks!


Gaming's Beautiful People #3: Waifu Warfare (Bloggers Wanted)

Understanding How Street Fighter is Played

Cblogs of 2/05/16 + Digital Preservation

Music Notes: "Tied Down" by Forever Still

Desert Golfing - The Model Mobile Game

Review: Pony Island

Do you even Bebop?

Cblogs of 02/04/16 + Bayonetta and some other one I suppose

Waifu Wars: Your Cruel Device, Your Blood Like Ice..

Best Kickstarter implosion EVER as dev money is spent on booze and strippers

 Add your impressions

 Quickposts
Status updates from C-bloggers

Niwannabe avatarNiwannabe
All right, you guys, time for the important questions. Fuck, Marry, Kill: Tharja, Sully and Sumia?
Fuzunga avatarFuzunga
The time has come for me to play Earthbound.
Pixie The Fairy avatarPixie The Fairy
As the Ultimate Waifu gazed down upon the Earth from her Celestial Throne, she sighed, for mainly shit-tier waifus were being chosen. But one fairy gazed into the stars, declaring her love, sacrificing dreams and spiders on an alter of glitter for her.
ikiryou avatarikiryou
When a new Destiny article comes out
Alphadeus avatarAlphadeus
Thanks to my girlfriend, we own a PS4 now. ID is Ikaruszino. I don't own any multiplayer games (yet) or have PS Plus (yet :p), but feel free to add me so in the future maybe we can play something.
Bardley avatarBardley
My absolute finest moment in all of Metal Gear. Also, the first time I had driven a truck.
JohnSmith123 avatarJohnSmith123
Ok. That EDF 4.1 game is really really good. You can even sing and shout "EDF!" with your soldiers! Holy crackers.
StriderHoang avatarStriderHoang
I want to goad my wife into playing RE Revelations 2 with me but I don't know if she can deal with the whole 3D spatial movement thing, even if she plays the supporting character.
Lawman avatarLawman
Heads-up: Mega Man soundtracks are free right now at the Capcom Store. Guessing it's a glitch. All of them are digital downloads, except for Mega Man 9, which is a physical CD that requires money for shipping. Link in comments.
Solar Pony Django avatarSolar Pony Django
My Brawl in the Family books finally came! It took a while but Matthew (guy who made the series) has been super busy so I totally understand. =D
Dreamweaver avatarDreamweaver
Here's what a typical dinner with me looks like: Stouffer's chicken parmesan, Lay's potato chips, and a cold can of Mountain Dew, all eaten on a cold set of tiles. That's right, ladies, THIS is what you'd be missing out on. Eat your heart out, @SayWord.
thelivinglegend avatarthelivinglegend
Not digging the difficulty of Xcom 2 so far. I always thought the first one was tough but fair, but this seems that at times it won't matter what strategy you use, you'll end up losing and having to restart. Seems more trial and error than tactical.
Barry Kelly avatarBarry Kelly
How's everyone finding XCOM 2? My first campaign isn't going well, half a dozen deaths so far and a sea of hospitalised vets in the roster :(
Pixie The Fairy avatarPixie The Fairy
Just tried the SFV kiosk demo. Impressions: Charlie is weird now. Chun Li now down-to-forwards her signature kick. Ryu, Ryu never changes. How to V-Trigger? Hah, Capcom does not explain such things! Needs more Rathalos and Feylines.
Ckarasu avatarCkarasu
For anyone wondering: Digimon Cyber Sleuth is pretty good. A bit easy, so play on hard mode for challenge, but it's like playing Final Fantasy 10, but with Digimon. You can even get Black Wargreymon if you buy it this month. Clearly, the best Digimon.
CoilWhine avatarCoilWhine
I bought Bloodborne and $30 in PSN moolah to top off my Playstation shopping spree.
ChrisHannard avatarChrisHannard
I just made a thing of beauty.
Fuzunga avatarFuzunga
Nordic just saved a bunch of games from being delisted. Some pretty good ones! [url]http://www.nordicgames.at/index.php/article/galactic_ip_rescue_operation_aka_new_franchises_acquired[/url]
Atleastimhousebroken avatarAtleastimhousebroken
Weird brutal death metal song about Majora's Mask (Reminds me of Gorguts)! My life is complete! Lyrics in comments. https://profoundlorerecords.bandcamp.com/track/tales-of-the-majora-mythos-part-1
Dreamweaver avatarDreamweaver
I SWEAR the Goddess is trolling me. I HATE having dreams where everything's finally okay with my life, only to wake up and realize it's all been a delusional lie. I'm starting to think this is a sign that maybe I should just keep sleeping forever... T^T
more quickposts


Contest!


Seriously

Invert site colors

  Dark Theme
  Light Theme


Destructoid means family.
Living the dream, since 2006

Pssst. konami code + enter

modernmethod logo



Back to Top


We follow moms on   Facebook  and   Twitter
  Light Theme      Dark Theme
Pssst. Konami Code + Enter!
You may remix stuff our site under creative commons w/@
- Destructoid means family. Living the dream, since 2006 -