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Phantasy Star Online Gets Carded, PC-ed 18

Thanks to IGN Cube for their article taking an in-depth look at the U.S. version of Phantasy Star Online Episode III: C.A.R.D. Revolution for GameCube. They note the advantages and disadvantages of the GC-exclusive online CCG title: "Since it is a PSO game, the legions of fans that can't get enough of dungeon crawling will immediately be interested in PSOIII, but since it no longer holds the same basic hack n' slash mechanics that made Episode I so popular, Episode III by its nature will turn off many of the same fans that are meant to embrace it." Over at PSO World there are multiple resources for the import version of PSO: Episode III, including a card database and a guides section, and the site also has news on an in-development PC version of Phantasy Star Online: Episode 1 & 2, though a U.S. release for that is as yet unknown.
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Phantasy Star Online Gets Carded, PC-ed

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  • I always thought that PSO looked cool, but I've also always thought they were taking the mickey by levying a monthly charge, so I've never bought it. If I see it in the 2ndhand bin at GAME for 15 I might buy it just to play offline multiplayer with my kids though.
  • Sucessful? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Shakey_Jake33 ( 670826 ) on Tuesday January 13, 2004 @09:29AM (#7961799)
    People doubt this game far too early on. Why do I think this game has a chance? Because your subcription fee for PSO Episode 1 and 2 works for PSO3 also. PSO fans do not have to pay again for this game, and with that in mind, many people shall buy this game purely on the basis that it will be free for them. Hell, surely 5.99 for 2 games online 24-7 is value for money? Card Battle games are massive in Japan, so success of this game in that territory is pretty much assured... but the sucess of this game in other territories rides purely on the fact that the fans (lets face it, non-fans probably care little for this title) will not have to pay anything more than the initial price for the game.
    • by EnglishTim ( 9662 )
      You'll still have to pay your 39GBP for the game disc anyway, won't you? And I've never thought that 6GBP per month just for a glorified lobby service was worth it in the first place.
  • Personally, I've never had much of a thing for the Japanese card game style. I remember when I was in high school and Magic had its first debut, maybe I just didn't care so much, but for me card games are poker, texas hold-em or whatnot.

    I'm not sure if I agree with the assertion that these types of card games aren't popular with americans; look at all the cartoons! I would say though that what turns me off of that style of game more than anything is the absolutely awful dubbing of japanese shows on america
    • by chrismcdirty ( 677039 ) on Tuesday January 13, 2004 @10:56AM (#7962382) Homepage
      I enjoy those card games, but I hate the fact that they're oriented more towards collecting. I always enjoyed playing Magic with my friends who spent paycheck after paycheck on decks, but never once did I buy a single card. It wasn't worth the money to me. Perhaps if they released decks that always had the same cards, then the game could be based more on strategy, instead of who spent the most money finding the ultra-rare card. Then I'd also buy them, too.
    • I have to say that I disagree with the new direction as well. Maybe CCGs are storming in Japan, but I really don't see it over here. PSO was popular here because of its Diablo-like gameply, just as the article text says. I enjoy it a lot - I played over a *modem* connection for three hours last weekend with some friends. There aren't many games these days I'd be willing to do that with.

      It seems that Sega shouldn't bother releasing Episode III over here, but is doing so simply to pacify the PS-fanbase, who'
  • Magic Shmagic. (Score:2, Interesting)

    by SuperMo0 ( 730560 )
    Between Baten Kaitos and this game, the world is looking up for creative uses for CCG video games. Proof that you DON'T have to "port" a physical CCG to a computer.
  • by Tommy2099 ( 741016 ) on Tuesday January 13, 2004 @09:57AM (#7961968)
    All your cards will be proabably be covered by scenery thanks to Sonic Team's trademark camera programming.
  • Turn-based? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Gizzmonic ( 412910 ) on Tuesday January 13, 2004 @12:32PM (#7963329) Homepage Journal
    Personally, I loved PSO when it first came out. No one even came close to doing what Sega did on the console front in early 2001. I played it rampantly for the first few months, enjoying a good mix-it-up with friends both real and online. The combat was simple, but the communication was great, especially the cards you could design.

    However, I didn't buy the "version 2 add-on" because the game was $40, then $5 a month (I have no problem paying a monthly fee, but I shouldn't have to pay premium game prices AND a monthly fee).

    In addition to that, player killing/hacking became a pretty serious problem, and SEGA responded by restricting people from backing up their VMU savefiles. Not good.

    Playing by yourself makes you realize the other limitations of the game-only 2 or 3 classes are worth playing, magic users are too weak, and androids are too damn boring to play with.

    So I guess it's a good thing they're trying something new...but really, a card game? That's totally lame-it's a poor use of interactivity, and even a poor use of video gaming per se.

    Instead of this turn-based, static, quasi-interactive sequel, I was wishing for:

    -Expanded action engine giving a wider range of moves, maybe some street-fighter type control. They started this with the timing-based 3-hit combos in the old game.

    -Greater number of levels and/or map maker.

    -Better puzzles: something more indepth than "everyone stand on one button, and the door will open." They could have done something that required timing between 2 or more characters.

    -Custom weapons. In addition to finding weapons, you would find stuff like "copper," "ruby," etc and put them together to make certain weapons. Depending on your class, level, etc you would come up with different stuff. Maybe there would be certain ingredients that you had to trade to get in order to build the best weapon. They could also add fun cosmetic stuff, like the ability to "tag" your weapon with a creator code and short string describing it.

    Maybe we will see something like that in a later PSO. As for this one, it doesn't seem like my bag, baby. SEGA is in a real slump lately-Super Monkey Ball 2 was probably the last original game worth a crap they've come out with, and it's been a year and a half! That is the bite!
    • SEGA is in a real slump lately-Super Monkey Ball 2 was probably the last original game worth a crap they've come out with, and it's been a year and a half! That is the bite!

      Don't forget the superlative Panzer Dragoon Orta, which came out last January in the USA. Otherwise I certainly agree with you. Sonic Team's output is especially galling - last good NEW game they released was probably Samba De Amigo, original PSO, or Chu Chu Rocket (not sure which came out last - Samba, maybe?). I just cannot understan
  • I, as well as all my friends (both of us :) love CCGs. I like standard card games as well. MTG took gaming into an area I'd never seen before, and then came all the awful knockoffs. Unfortunately, a lot of good knockoffs fell by the wayside, probably confirming that Americans really don't embrace CCGs.

    I tried Yu-Gi-Oh! I really did. That game has a lot of emphasis on collecting the really rare cards. On one hand, that means the game play suffers, on the other hand, that means the game has a better co
  • i found PSO I&II hard to communicate without a GC keyboard!

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