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Phinally: Phantasy Star Online 2 Journeying West

I think the main lesson games aim to teach us is that - whether past, present, future, alternate universe, or space - there will always be spiders.

I have no idea what to expect from Phantasy Star Online 2. The original sort-of-Diablo-ish monster mash delighted a bright-eyed, bushy tailed (I’ve since had that surgically removed) version of me during the Dreamcast days, but times have changed – especially in MMOtopia. Even so, for better or worse, many of PSO’s longtime staples still seem to be in place here, so we’re looking at randomized dungeons, combo-based combat, and heaps of sci-fi-themed loot. I will, however, soon have the chance to render a verdict without revealing to Japan that their infants can out-speak a college-educated American. Yep: Sega’s finally seen fit to peg Phantasy Star Online 2 with an “early 2013” release in the US and Europe. There’s a mystifyingly parkour-packed trailer after the break.

Now I really want an MMO with blindingly fast-paced parkour combat. That could actually be really, really cool. Sadly, Phantasy Star Online 2 isn’t it. Here – via some kindly soul on YouTube – is what Sega’s clear evidence that it’ll never win a spelling bee actually looks like.

So then, no crazy twist pop-shove-its into atmospheric re-entry, but it’s actually not looking half-bad, if you ask me. I don’t think any other modern MMOs have air juggle combos, so it’s a brave new world. I shall continue to watch it from afar – until it comes out, at which point I’ll play it from a-close. Is anyone else vaguely, semi-optimistically interested?

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Nathan Grayson

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