I came to this game after playing and adoring the original on the Dreamcast;
I was not dissapointed.
It sucessfully retained much of the original while adding many features.
Additions to this version inculde:
One new additional character choice for each class,
Various spell restrictios for diffrent classes and races,
Health regeneration for mechs, TP regen for neumans,
Mechs can now set traps,
Hidden options for dress colours on DC version now in option menu,
Dressingroom option to change appearence mid game for a set cost,
All loading screens have some form of player based alteration,
Mome during Unsealed Door quest will now lie down so you dont haft to keep him alive (very important),
High level monsters in each area in normal will often drop trimates,
The 3 pillars to unlock the runis can be activated the first time they are encountered,
Limits to maximum levels of grinders that can be used on certain weapons.
The game itself is essensialy the same, the quests are the same, the levels are the same, the monsters are the same. There does seem to be a slight higer chance of rare monsters spawning.
Ultimate is a bit diffrent, but its essensialy the same with diffrent monsters and a much higher difficulty; this can be an issue, many classes have their peak of effectiveness on lower difficulties and struggle to make the leap neccecery to survive on ultimate.
II feels much more linear, especialy due to their being no offline quests; Theres no element of neccecery repitition there is in I.
There is some new chalanges places in the areas and its storyline is semi linked, but its still really more of the same.
I cannot say anything about online multiplayer as I have never played it online.
This game has always been a good one if you like to spend time building up characters and can put in time to get all the specials and get every mission done.
It can be a massive time drain, and its full storyline being complex and only really done through quests can feel a bit strange at first when the repeating indefinatly is possible (and almost neccecery).
For all of you dreamcast fans, this game is a must have! I played Phantasy Star Online for the dreamcast until the servers were shut down, and was so happy that this game came out! It is just about the same as the DC version, except the interface and graphics have been improved slighlty.
PSO is a MMORPG that also has an offline mode. In the beginning of the game, you are shown an in-game movie explaining what is going on. You learn that you are on a spaceship called Pioneer 2, and are looking for Pioneer 1 that landed on the planet Ragol, but then disappeared.
After the movie is over, you can choose your character from three different classes; humans, rangers, and forces. In each of the classes, you can choose one of four characters. Each class and character has their own strengths and weaknesses, so plan ahead on what you plan to do with your character and choose the right one.
After you create your character, you are dropped on Pioneer 2 where you meet with Principal Tyrell and accept your first mission. This is where the offline mode of the game begins.
The online mode was fun, but it has long been shut down by Nintendo. There really isn't that much of a use to describe it here now, so I will be brief. Upon signing on, you were placed in a lobby with other players. Here you can walk around, trade, form parties, or just chat. At the counter, you can start a PvP match, or go on a quest.
Even without the online play, PSO is still an excellent game. I would suggest giving it a shot.
The first massively multiplayer RPG designed for a home console. Chat, exchange items and information, and go into battle with players from all over the world - all in real-time. With Phantasy Star Online, RPG gaming has no boundaries.