The gameplay is in real time and combat mostly consists of normal attacks in combination with special skills and spells. The controls are simple enough as combat commands mostly use one button. The game also allows players to upgrade not only their class skills and spells but also their weapons.
Super Gamer Dude
Phantasy Star Universe is a dungeon based action RPG held in a futuristic environment. Players are given the option of choosing between four races: Humans, Newman, Beast, and Cast. Each race have their own advantages. The humans are portrayed with all round skills which makes them very adaptable; the Newmans, who resemble futuristic elves are skilled in magic; Beasts are masters of close combat; whereas the android casts are excellent in the use of guns.
The gameplay is in real time and combat mostly consists of normal attacks in combination with special skills and spells. The controls are simple enough as combat commands mostly use one button. The game also allows players to upgrade not only their class skills and spells but also their weapons and even the companion partner machine. Upgrading, however, isn't very simple and direct. Often times, it is confusing. Aside from upgrades, players are also given much leeway in customizing their character's appearance, armor and clothing, even to their character's virtual living space. But, the main aspect of Phantasy Star Universe is really in its network mode where players get to interact with one another in a futuristic environment. Through game missions, players can form parties with friends or even establish new friendship with other online players.
An offline gaming option is also provided where characters can follow through the game's story which more or less follows through the online game. The player, though, is limited to play as a Human on a journey to maintain peace among the human colonized planets. The plot doesn't compare to those of other offline RPGs but it is moderately decent and portrayed through in-game narration and CGI cut scenes. Fans of the Phantasy Star series, though, would quickly point out that people will get most of the game through online play. The online game isn't free though. Players have to pay a monthly subscription fee of $9.99 USD to gain access to the online game so this would really be something to consider for those planning to play the online game.
With that monthly fee, players are provided with perks such as being able to customize their characters, equipments and virtual space according to their taste. The downside though is that the game provides very little tutorials so newbies who join will have a hard time figuring out what, where and how to proceed in the game. This shouldn't dishearten new players as they can always ask for directions and seek advice from other experienced players. This could take a while though as it would take a few hours to get started and familiarize yourself with the game system but once you get the hang of it you'll no sooner find yourself among a party of up to 6 players, hacking your way through hordes of alien monsters to finish your missions. Despite its shortcomings, players would still find themselves spending a few more minutes to garner money just to upgrade to a new weapon or sacrifice an hour of sleep just to finish a mission and level up. Phantasy Star Universe can still prove to be an addictive game.