The Tokyo Game Show has seen a few tidbits released for PSO2, including a couple of collaborations no one cares about (alright, the Persona 5 collaboration has stirred up a bit of a reaction..) and the announcement of a classic Phantasy Star event, the Famitsu Cup. This event will be a full on web-event and is starting some time in November. Reposting the trailer:
That thing that looks like a failed attempt at a 90s console mascot is Famitsu’s own mascot “Necky”. Unfortunately you’re presumably going to have to interact with it during the event.
Details are a little thin on the event for now, but it does seem that it’ll involve the gathering system at least. Gathering items net you “Gabasu Tickets”, though it doesn’t give any indication what these tickets are for. If it’s always 4 per gathering attempt, that is quite a lot of tickets you could acquire if you have a large number of alts…
Special Mining Base Defense
The Famitsu Cup will come with a slight new twist on the all-star style of event quest by setting it in Mining Base: Invasion’s map; an Emergency Quest named “Challenges from Necky”. You’ll need to fend off Gal Gryphon, Kuronites, Lilipa Mechs and even Aberrations. We’ve only been shown a tiny snippet of it, but it seems hectic enough.
Update: As pointed out, it’s Invasion’s map not Despairs. Guess I’m the one despairing.
Aside the towers being threatened by enemies they’ve never seen before, it seems at least one new mechanic is added as well in the form of a barrier. This barrier seems to be protecting AIS Exoda as they charge their cannons, which makes it a significant threat.
I’m pretty interested in how this quest will play out, as I’ve pondered before how some non-darker enemies might function mechanically in a tower-defense style quest. Barbarillipas for example could be pretty destructive if ignored, what with their very long range and constant attacks. Gryphon tornadoes, lightning and general charging about could be tricky to deal with. Falka Leopard and Zeta Guranz with their huge amount of missiles and potential for collateral damage (especially Zeta Guranz’ spinning laser attack) present a potentially interesting positioning problem. I also can’t help but ponder what might happen if the attacking waves end up turning on each other (as Darkers and non-Darkers will fight each other) but I kind of doubt they will due to how the aggro mechanics work; it can be hard enough for a player to peel mobs off the towers and they do a lot more damage.
The quest will apparently award collaboration items.
So far, that’s all the information about the event that I’m aware of. Not much to go on, really, but at least the emergency quest looks like it’ll be fun. Kind of hoping the rest of the event isn’t based on gathering items, mind…
Rejoice! For all those egg drops you get when you’re not playing summoner will actually have a purpose. From the 24th of August you’ll be able to exchange 10 x 10* or 11* eggs in for 1 Lambda Grinder. Fancy!
Official announcement on this was posted here. The image is from Gheaven’s tweet on it here.
I mean the fact that 11* eggs are subject to the same exchange rate as 10* despite being rarer is a little strange, but they’ve done this kind of thing before with 10 and 11* weapons and units. The two are effectively considered the same category, despite one still being visibly less common than the other.
The upside is you can gain something from picking up all those SPECIAL EGG?s laying around at the end of emergency quests with the minor downside that you’re going to have to pay to untek them for the pleasure. It’s gonna be up to you whether you think Lambda Grinders are still worth picking up this way or not.
The 44th broadcast happened today so let’s get this opinions machine rolling again.
Bumped has its bullet point write-up here as always. As usual, I’ll generally be sharing my opinions on the stuff I care about as well as a gathering spot for the various videos captured from the stream.
Las Vegas Update Trailer 1:
Seems to be a new ranking system in which you’re matched up with 19 other players. If you score well within your league, you can earn prizes like Stargem Tickets and Tri-boosters.
It’s nice that at least casual players will stand a hope in hell’s chance of actually competing as opposed to a ship-wide ranking. That said, I’m curious if there’s any matchmaking involved or if it’s just completely random.
SG Scratch Recycle
So this was finally shown and no surprise it’s a disappointment. For one thing it requires 40 Stargem Scratch items to be exchanged, which is a huge number of items. Secondly, the selection of items you can exchange for doesn’t include every item in the scratch. In particular, you can only exchange for the default variations of the Dark Falz costumes excluding the battle damaged Apprentice costume. So if you want any color variation or that, you’re still at the mercy of RNG.
To illustrate, you will need 3600 Stargems total (80 * 40), which means you need to be earning 21 Stargems per day (153 days until the scratch expires, so 3600/21). If you’re not, you don’t stand a hope of using this exchange unless they get very liberal with Stargems down the line.
As someone who has been wanting these costumes for nearly 4 years, this system continues to be an insult.
Chat commands to change your facial expression and your fashion preset will be added. Not sure why it took them this long to add these, really.
New story stuff
Seems we’ll be learning more about “Earth Guides”, the resistance force against Mother Cluster. New Unite E-Trials will appear on Earth featuring members of the Earth Guides battling against Phantoms.
During the events, we meet yet another Mother Cluster Apostle, this time an Apostle of Fire named “Phaleg”. She’s demonstrated to have considerable power, which surprises the player even after the tough enemies they’ve had to deal with in the past. Not sure why we needed another apostle introduced so soon seeing as we’ve barely gotten to know the 5 they introduced all at once last time.
Normally I wouldn’t write about this kinda stuff but it’s interesting because the three costumes on the right are the first conversions of old outfits into the Layered wear system. So it seems they are willing to do this after all, which naturally makes me ponder what other outfits are due for conversion.
Las Vegas Part 2
The two main things of note with this update are the new pet and selection of skill rings.
New Pet – Lucari- er Synchro
The main gimmick of this pet is essentially Tech-Arts, in that the pet’s power rises as you combo different PAs together.
Might be interesting, I just personally have no interest in playing Summoner myself so I’ll likely end up sticking to easy-mode Wanda whenever I’m on that alt.
These are the skill rings shown so far (with credit to Bumped for the names).
L / Bullet Bow Homing
L / JB Elemental Keep
L / Standing Sign
L / A Launcher Mode
L / Short Mirage
L / Wand E Change
L / Mate Lovers
R / J Reversal Cover
Ranger finally gets some skill rings!
Another Launcher Mode changes Launcher’s basic attack to be like that of PSU Grenade Launcher weapons. Not sure why you’d do that seeing as I’m fairly sure that would make the weapon much more inconenient to use. Standing Sign on the other hand shows an effect when Standing Snipe is active which… why is this even a ring? Sure, it’s useful but this is a basic gameplay feature they’re relegating to something you have to grind for. I genuinely feel bad for Rangers right now unless those rings have some other bonuses.
Bullet Bow Homing sounds like it might change up Bullet Bow gameplay a bit, depends on how accurate it is.
Mate Lovers has a kinky name, but it’s hard to guess exactly what this ring will do. May be use-time, may be boosted heals, may change the animation, it could be all the above and other things I’m too dumb to think of.
Wand Element Change could be potentially interesting, enabling Wand users to get away with just having a single Wand rather than a rainbow selection of them. Kinda sucks for those players who already gathered a rainbow selection, but at least they have a ring-slot freed up.
Kill enemies to get points, collect emblems to get bonus points. Try to get as high a score as you can within the time limit!
Enemies will still reward drops and exp, however all drops will be pooled into an end-crystal like with the current Odin Limited Quest and Mining Base Defence. The higher the score, the better your rare drop rate will be.
An emergency trial can occur during the quest which is essentially a giant Independence Day reference. Destroy the UFO’s shields before it annihilates the city!
This is a new type of quest which is separate from the Free Field. I don’t know what kind of limitations there’ll be on it if there are any. There is however at least a Klotho Client Order associated with it, though it only pays out a measly 10,000 Meseta. Sugar daddy letting me down.
Las Vegas Field
Las Vegas will first be appearing in story mode, which is slightly unusual for the release of a field but they did do it before with Kuron in Episode 3.
Aside the verticality of the map, the free field seems to be mechanically identical to the Tokyo field in that enemies are pointed out on the radar and you need to grind out quest points to clear. This may, much like Tokyo, make the field tedious to complete solo due to the smaller spawn sizes. The lower point requirement may ablate this somewhat, I also ponder if the boss may be guaranteed to spawn at a certain point quota as with recent event quests.
The map looks alright enough, albeit embarrassingly low poly in places. The most striking thing is how small it feels while riding around on the Rideroid vehicle. On foot, the map feels spacious enough but in the air it ends up feeling really small. It does also seem like it won’t be using the old map-generation system present in other areas.
Es Update: Starring the new character EDGELord and a badly drawn weaponoid made by someone who has never seen a woman in real life or has no understanding of anatomy at all (Whipblade Paratizel). Some pretty dang nicely drawn ones in there as well.
Arks Festival Items: WUB WUB WUB WUB WUB
Live Concerts: Featuring Dark Falz Loser as an old woman firing lasers into the Arks Shopping mall.
I’m afraid this was the surprise trailer, so no grand surprises to talk about this time.
Question and Answers
Once again, thanks to Kami_Pepe on twitter for posting summaries of these. These are interpretations based on machine translation, so please please get in touch if you can provide something more accurate or if I’ve gotten something horribly wrong.
Q: Why can’t we have multiple weapon camos at once?
A: The original implementation of the weapon camo system was clumsy, so we can’t do this for now.
This is reminding a bit of the problem they had back in PSU when they wanted to expand the number of Photon Arts a character could learn but couldn’t due how the game was programmed. One day, Sega will learn how to do basic software engineering I’m sure…
Q: Is it possible you could allow for bulk weapon appraisal?
A: It’s something we’re currently doing a trial and error approach for, we may have something for the end of the year or early next year.
Nice to hear I guess, though I’m not sure how they’d handle the element portion unless people would be fine having bulk appraised weapons all having the same element. For the most part, I would be anyway.
As always, you can read the bullet-point rundown on Bumped here. I’m just gonna be sharing my thoughts on any particular part I feel anything about. So I’m not going to be talking about PSO2es and the additional lolis it’s gaining or the Anime character CD. That said, still quite a lot I want to talk about so strap in and get comfortable if you want to come along for the whole ride.
To start off, here’s a trailer for content coming up in July
Includes a new casino game, yet more Gunner themed outfits and this year’s Beach Wars quest which sees the return of Emperappy as well as a titled Chrome Dragon as its end-boss.
Casino Coins for Star Gems
What’s that? 1 Star Gem per day isn’t enough for you? Fear not, as you’ll soon be able to buy Star Gems with Casino Coins for the following amounts:
5 Star Gems for 5000CC
10 Star Gems for 9,800CC
20 Star Gems for 19,400CC
So you’ll be able to have a free roll at the Star Gem scratch for the low low price of 77,600 Casino Coins! Who knows, you might even get Casino Coins as a prize from the Scratch! You’re always wanted some of those!
So yeah, fairly obviously this is meant to be a bonus and not so you can use the Casino to gamble your way to victory on the SG scratch. That said, it still feels like a steep price for what it is, but I admit that even I’d be tempted to drop excess coins on it unless some good rare-boss triggers came up.
As an aside, in late July it seems you’ll be getting 1 more Stargem per account per day for simply logging into PSO2es. So they do seem intent on adding extra ways for players to earn gems, so over time the scratch may become more viable for free players. Right now the odds are still stacked against you if you want a particular outfit from the scratch.
Final Fantasy 14 Collab Stuff
Miqo’tes, Relic Weapons and more!
Most of the cosmetics stuff looks great and I’m sure this is going to be a popular scratch when it’s out. Again, it’s a bit of a shame there was no female armor among this lot but that would have been a mere cherry on top of a great cake for me.
The Limited Quest
The center of this update is going to be a quest set in the Ruins that’s essentially another all-star dungeon-style quest with set encounters. Featured enemies include Dark Falz Angel, Anga Fundarge and Guar Zigmorde among many others. Odin awaits at the very end of the quest.
Enemy drops are all pooled into a crystal at the end of the quest, much like with the recent Easter quest and the Mining Base Defense quests. That means you must clear the run in order to get any items at all.
Odin himself works much like he does in FF14, with all his AOE and spear mechanics in place. He also retains his Zantetsuken ability, which is an outright DPS race. If the MPA fails the DPS race and Odin gets to use Zantetsuken at all, the quest immediately fails.
Weakbullet is jammed on Odin, which is fast becoming the standard for PSO2 bosses it seems like. Really if they feel that strongly about Weak Bullet I’m not sure why they don’t just give the skill itself a direct nerf, except perhaps because they’d need to rebalance a bunch of existing content which expects Weakbullet at full strength (such as Magatsu).
Healing effects are also reduced during the fight, which I assume is an attempt to make the encounter feel a bit closer to how it was in Final Fantasy 14. If it’s just using the same method they use for Extreme Quests however the likes of Megiverse and HP-steal weapons shouldn’t be affected. Automate Users may want to be aware, however.
I’m really not a fan of the way this guest is engineered. Because the quest fails when Zantetsuken fires and because items are only handed out for clearing you will lose an entire quest’s worth of drops. Given this is a DPS check right at the end of the quest, for me this seems far too punishing. My worry is if the DPS check is too brutal, then after a short while it’ll be extremely difficult to actually get a run going at all as people furiously check each other’s gear and quit out of panic.
Could you blame people if they did that though? It’s not a short quest, so embarking with a group you know might fail the DPS check is a potential complete waste of your time and boosters! You will gain no items for doing so and you will make no progress with Collection Files either. If the DPS check is brutal, this is a disaster waiting to happen. If it’s forgiving however, it might be alright. The encounter looks fun enough without the DPS check. Yeah, you may argue what’s the point in a DPS check you barely notice as why have the check at all and I actually agree with you! Mostly because I detest DPS checks, however. For PSO2, this normally boils down to “how many people can get away with carrying the entire MPA”, as in how many people with the optimal builds and great gear are needed before the quest isn’t doomed from the start. Or I suppose the inverse question would be “how many people in terrible gear can the DPS check tolerate”?
In short, Sega better be careful about the design of this quest as could create an extremely toxic environment with the wrong numbers.
Odin will also spawn outside of the quest in regular Free Fields. Not sure if his Zentetsuken remains in-tact and I certainly hope it doesn’t retain its quest-fail mechanic! As someone pointed out on Bumped, it sure would suck to spawn into a map where a random Odin somewhere in the area uses Zentetsuken, resulting in an instant quest fail the moment you warp down there. I mean even if it doesn’t fail, getting randomly one-shot because an Odin across the map got to use the move would still be very irritating.
The relic weapons themselves are going to be camos, not drops. There is going to be a weapon collection for this quest however and it’s a new weapon series called the “Aura” series.
What’s interesting about these weapons is more the implications it has for the game than their power. In terms of attack, they sit about the same level as Revolucio weapons. I judge this based on the Wired Lance shown, which boasts 1350 S-Atk at +35 (after removing affixes). Their latent is entirely focused on bosses however, offering a 12% boost to damage dealt to and a 15% damage reduction from bosses.
As you can imagine, this makes them relatively useless weapons in general but the interesting part of this is that they directly compete with Ideal weapons. In the case of the wired lance, the difference between Ideal Scissors and Aura Wired Lance (can’t interpret its name) is about 142 S-atk. Of course, the Ideal weapon latent is 18% damage to bosses vs Aura’s 12%. So does 142 S-atk cover the difference of about 6% damage? I’m not expert enough in the damage formula to say, but gut feeling says that the two weapons would end up fairly comparable. That fact alone is interesting, because it makes Ideal weapons redundant; at least for as long as this collection file is active (until late August it seems).
While challenge mode has had a bit of an incentive issue for a while now (Ideal weapons are already outclassed by other weapons even for bossing) to have yet another thing come along and erode it even further is kind of sad. Some of my fondest memories of PSO2 come from Challenge Mode…
AMERICA – FUCK YEAH
So yeah, they teased the next field and it turns out it’s Las Vegas in the good old USA. I’d joke that PSO2 is finally coming to America but I already did that. So did literally everyone else so… ahem.
Based on the enemies we’d seen in the data, Las Vegas was a strong guess and it turned out that one was correct! Other guesses were just America in general, Paris and Akihabara. I would not have been surprised with any of those outcomes.
Anyway, it’s just as crazy as the Tokyo reveal and I adore it, check out the trailer:
The music is “Neon Days” by a group named Rumblebee, who seemingly previously did music for Sonic Riders.
The chief thing you’re going to notice (besides all the FREEDOM) is that this map has more vertical space than any map released so far. Seeing as the ARKS can’t fly, in order to facilitate this they’ve introduced a chicken-walker style mech called the “Rideroid” that you can use to fly around the map. Vegas also seems to be enormous compared to what we’ve had so far, though that may be a misleading artifact due to the way the trailer was shot.
Given the nature of the map, I’m pondering if it might not have the same random generation that all maps have had so far or even any at all. I’m not against this idea, as a properly hand-crafted map would be a refreshing change for PSO2, it’s just this seems like it might be the death of the old style of Free Field quest.
I should say, I don’t think the old style of Free Field quest is perfect by any stretch. I always felt like a free field shouldn’t even have a boss and should instead just be about freely wandering an area til you get bored. The boss arenas should go to a set map like they did with Train Ghidoran’s Arks Quest. In my opinion, the Kuronia and Tokyo fields becoming point grinds was not the right direction to take them as it runs counter to the philosophy of “run at your own pace”, never-mind the really irritating way Tokyo handles its spawns. Hopefully Las Vegas doesn’t handle its spawns in the same way, and with the shift from grinding stones to doing collection sheets there should be no need for a point system.
As is tradition, let’s take still shots from the best video we can find and have a look at the enemies and, where possible, try to match them to data-mined names. As is always the case, these are caps taken from a live-stream so the quality of the images is going to be very muddy.
Let’s start with the first enemy shown, which is a thing walking on a ball. There is one enemy with AI that has a ball and that’s Phantom Pierrot A. The AI file suggests it also has a knife attack.
That thing in the bottom right seems to be a cow’s skull. While this could be Phantom Buffalo, it seems Buffalo’s AI includes the ability to stomp. I guess a skull could stomp, but these are phantom enemies so for all I know the little guy could suddenly grow a ghost body or something.
Clowns and Jesters
By appearance, I would assume this pair of clowns are the two Phantom Pierrot variants. There do seem to be two different enemies here, with the red jester in both of them.
Judging by the AI, however, it seems that both of them are in fact Phantom Pierrot B, as it’s the only one with a chainsaw attack and balloons. Unless one is a rare variant or they decided to split this into two enemies I’m not sure why the two are different colours.
In case you don’t know, a “pierrot” is essentially an old pantomime character which was a kind of sad clown.
I did not expect this to be a rabbit riding the sign for a gun shop, but then who would have? There are two variants of this little guy, one of which seems to be the sniping variant we see above and the other can fire rockets. We only seem to see the sniping kind in the trailer.
Big beards, mullets and leather. Just about everything I wanted out of this enemy.
The AI for this guy is surprisingly complicated, but despite this there’s only really a couple of methods that stand out. It seems to have dashing attacks as well as the attack it uses in the trailer, which I assume is it’s “drift cutter” ability.
Now, I’m making an educated guess that this enemy is caravan as it aligns with the overall circus theme the map seems to have going for it. Do a Google image search for “Circus Caravan” and you’ll see what I mean.
It has an attack where it fires something, a “cracker” attack and some slashing attacks. It also may be able to grab the player. It’s possible that it’s using the firing attack during the trailer, where it seems to be shooting balls all over the place.
The boss is Lady Liberty riding a Sphinx. I mean, we had various guesses as to what “PhantomGoddess” would turn out to be but I don’t think any of us expected this! It’s dumb as hell and I love it.
Now, PhantomGoddess is one of the earliest datamined enemies for this area and is in fact the source of the speculation that this field would take place in Las Vegas. In particular, she has a number of attacks based on Roulette, attacks involving the Eiffel Tower (seemingly using it as a lance) and of course the Sphinx. These and of course the statue herself were all things present on the Vegas strip, which is where the assumption that the next field may have been Vegas came from. From the AI I’ve seen so far, I don’t see any suggestions as to what status effect it might be weak to however it’s a boss so naturally its AI is long and complicated so I may have missed something. It does appear to have a phase shift at 60% HP.
The rest of the enemies in this section are enemies that are presumed to belong to this field either thematically or because they arrived in the data at around the same time. However, they seemed to be missing from the teaser.
Has “red shot”, “blue shot” and it may have some self destruction mechanic. Beyond that, I really don’t have a clue what kind of enemy this could be. I just can’t associate “Maxwell” with anything related to the theme of the field and googling so far hasn’t turned up anything.
At least, it didn’t turn up anything for those themes. What it did turn up however was a scientific concept known as “Maxwell’s Demon“. I won’t detail too much, but the important thing is that it’s concerned with violation of thermodynamics by way of separating out hot and cold particles. There was a game based on this concept called “Maxwell’s Maniac” in which the goal was to separate red and blue molecules into color coded chambers. I suspect it’s not a coincidence that this enemy has red and blue shots!
Again, much like Maxwell, “Laplace” as a name just doesn’t ring any bells for the overall themes of “America” and “Circus”.
Laplace does seem to have quite a number of abilities however, including a barrier of some kind, slashing and shooting attacks, the ability to summon things (summons “N” and “B”) and routines to keep track of and to go to its summons. It appears the summons are either Maxwells or it’s just that it has special routines for Maxwells in particular, I’m not sure. The complexity of its AI honestly puts it as a fairly good candidate as a mini-boss or even a boss.
So yeah, evidently Laplace and Maxwell are fairly closely related. So the question is raised, “Does Laplace turn up when I search up scientific stuff?”.Well, it doesn’t turn up in science (outside of the concept of “Laplace pressure”) so much but it does seem to come up a lot in mathematics. In particular, probabilities and statistics.
So we have potentially a mathematician/scientist theme with Laplace and Maxwell. This seems to be a fairly sharp departure from the overall themes in Las Vegas which makes me ponder if this pair of enemies may actually belong to a future field. Notably, Laplace has some routines specific to story mode.
Notably, Och Miller is a member of Mother Cluster who is a progeny mathematician. So odds seem pretty good that this pair of enemies are related to her.
Seems to have the ability to stick to targets and may include group-AI abilities. It contains a few grouping methods, but it’s possible that instead of having an enemy with actual flocking behavior it may be.that it’s spawned by a commanding enemy, similar to how Vardha summons Kindidds and Angel summons birds which he subsequently commands to explode.
I guessed a long time ago that there was a good possibility that this would be an american themed field. With that in mind, I figured “track” was meant to be “truck”, especially given we already had a train in Tokyo. Its just “a” in Japanese sounds more like the “uh” sound in how most english speakers would say “Truck”, hence why they might spell it as “track”.
However, I didn’t take into account that roller-coasters were a thing, and seeing the focus on one during the trailer did make me consider the possibility that it’d be a bunch of rollercoaster cars attacking us or something. However looking at the AI it does seem like it is indeed a truck, in particular a circus truck. Its AI file is big compared to regular enemies, suggesting it may be a mini-boss. It attacks with its “carrier car”, has a “horn bazooka” and can drift. It also has methods “Circus” and “Circus Attack”.
Las Vegas is a city in the state of Nevada. Another thing that exists in Nevada is “Area 51”, so yes UFOs are quite thematically appropriate for this field. So while no UFOs showed up in the teaser I’m fairly sure this will be in Vegas.
Phantom UFO has a number of abilities, including multiple laser attacks, a method named “UFOCatch” and a “LittleGrey”. In case you’re unaware, Greys are very much a pop-culture icon in the US and the most common depiction of aliens in that region. Though the greys themselves don’t seem to be separate entities from the UFO, they do have attacks and theres a few routines for their height as well as “greydown”. Given how a common depiction of flying saucers has them grabbing things with tractor beams I’m surprised there don’t seem to be any grab or hold attacks.
Bark! The AI has a dash attack and a “fire” attack.
It has an AI file but it’s completely empty. While it’s true that Goldrahda-type enemies are all labelled “Roach” as well, it’s likely that in this case it means an actual cockroach. This enemy was only recently added, so there’s a chance this won’t show up in Vegas.
Much like last time, Twitter user @kami_pepe reposted the summaries of the questions and their answers. Special thanks to Mewn and Espiokaos for help interpreting these. Let me know if theres anything drastically wrong.
Q: How do you know the breast-size of characters for the Arks Report?
A: It’s stored on characters as numerical data, so we just calculate the size based on that!
I’m glad the Japanese are asking the important questions.
Q: Sachiko has moving fingers! Will you be adding finger posing to PSO2 anytime soon?
A: There are no plans to implement this.
Presumably the main problem is they would have to add finger bones and rigging for every single outfit in PSO2, which would be a massive undertaking for such a relatively minor feature in the grand scheme of things. They’d also have to animate the fingers for most existing animations, which is a fair amount of work in its own right but not as taxing as rigging the 100s of costumes they’ve released. This I’m afraid is just going have to be something you’ll have to hope is present in PSO3 instead, whenever that happens.
Q: Why can’t we trade SG items?
A: There are two reasons for this.
Because if we didn’t, people with multiple accounts would take advantage of it given we distribute SG for free.
SG Scratch is aimed at only a portion of the userbase, so allowing trades would go against our intents.
Their first reason seems a little nonsensical to me. For one thing, you can already do this with FUN points. I mean, I guess FUN Scratch doesn’t typically last for 6 months, nor does it ever contain costumes but it can occasionally contain desirable haircuts, accessories and such, all of which are trad-able.
For the second reason, it’s possible that the system is engineered so that people are meant to log in every day. Letting people trade would mean people would just buy what they wanted instead. If this interpretation is accurate, it’s an irritating reason indeed especially given that right now even if people did log in every day they wouldn’t have nearly enough Star Gems for the amount of attempts they’d need to get what they want.There is of course the possibility that it’s aimed at whales which has its own unfortunate set of implications… Either way, I’m more convinced by their second reason than I am their first one and indeed I feel it explains their motivations for the first. A system that wants you to log in every day would potentially fall apart if you allowed people to trade.
Q: What are we supposed to do with duplicate items from the SG Scratch?
A: We plan to implement a way for you recycle duplicate items at a later date. For now,keep any spare items you have in storage! We’re sorry about this, there’s no excuse for expecting you to hold on to duplicate items.
So yeah, if you have any duplicate items or just generally SG items you don’t want I guess, hold onto them! I mean goodness knows what the eventual recycling items will end up being, but it’s better to hold on and be disappointed than to destroy your items and regret it later.
It’s anyone’s guess as to what items they’ll introduce into such a recycling shop however. I severely doubt it’ll result in a trade-in for additional Stargems, but hey that’d be appreciated!
Q: Why is there a 120 Casino Coin ticket in the SG Scratch?
A: The scratch will be up for six months, so it’s going to be a long-term thing. As you can get SG for free, you’ll have plenty of time to amass the Star Gems you require.
This is a particularly funky answer as it doesn’t really address the question at all… Assuming interpretations are correct it seems that the intention is for you to take an exceedingly long time to get what you want from the scratch. Unfortunately, as I’ve pointed out many times now, if you’re depending on the login bonuses logging in every day will give you an uncomfortably small shot at getting what you want.
Generally, I’m not at all satisfied with their answers justifying this terrible system they’ve concocted. However, as said elsewhere in this post, it’s plausible we may gain more ways to get Star Gems at time goes on, which may bring things into the realms of obtainable for dedicated players. As of right now, it doesn’t matter how dedicated you are as even if you used all the currently available methods to get Gems and logged in every day for the whole 6 months, you still basically have a small chance of getting what you want. That alone is criminal, and I hope the Japanese continue to pressure Sega over this system.
There was no mention of Ultimate Amduscia, but fear not because it definitely is not canned.
As of the latest patch, PSO-World user Shadowth117 was able to piece together this shot by swapping out some of the client’s files with some recently added assets for Ultimate Amduscia.
As you may recognize, it seems to resemble Caves 3 from PSO. Of course, this is a work that is still heavily in progress and the file-swap may have altered the look of the area in unintentional ways, so this does not represent the final product at all. The little glimpse is appreciated, however.
Another thing that was added which suggests they’re working on it still is a new enemy showed up in the client, named “ult_waker_beast”. “Ult Waker” is the internal name given to Anga Fundarge, which may suggest that Ultimate Amduscia may arrive with a brand new variant. All the data can tell us is that it has a tail, has biting attacks and still uses bits like Anga Fundarge does. “Beast” is normally used to describe creatures similar to Rockbear (such as Wolgahda) but given it has a tail and bites, it may not be or resemble a Rockbear re-model at all.
So yeah, it’s still being worked on. Who knows, we may well be getting a teaser trailer for it in a live broadcast or two! Will be interesting to see what they intend to do with it with the apparent death of the stone grind post Episode 4.
I’m a little salty! I’m not ashamed to admit that. With that in mind, I’m going to go over some thoughts on some of the things they announced today.
As always, a complete list without wordy opinions can be found on Bumped here. I’m just here for a rant mostly.
To briefly summarize what’s coming up;
Limited Quest set in Sanctum and event in June
New story stuff
Some new PA customizations (!)
Stuff about Es but no one cares about PSO2Es
A bunch of new costumes, some new but mostly collaborations and Anime crossovers (collabs from FF14 and Sakura Wars)
That’s kinda it really. They didn’t show off a whole lot of actually new stuff.
Stargem Shop and Scratch
This is the source of most of the salt I’ve got and most of the salt I’ve seen from the general community. The star gem shop displays a random selection of items at random prices. I’m not sure how often the items are re-shuffled, but it seems you only get 3 items at any given time. It also seems to re-roll the one item you bought, so you can’t just endlessly buy the same item for the same price.
Items so far include:
Mining Base Defense Trigger
Multiple of any of the above?
As the prices are randomized, there’s not much point listing them.
So yeah, they’re adding the ability to essentially buy your way into Emergency Quests, effectively turning them into Guardians Cash quests from PSU in a sense. This probably isn’t that big a deal, but for me it sets a worrying precedent when people can directly buy additional goes at lucrative Emergency Quests.
The Dark Falz outfits are finally being added to the game! But they’re also locked behind the Star Gem grind as part of the Star Gem scratch. This probably caused me the most salt given I was waiting for these outfits to come out and now I’m not sure I can even reliably get them.
But PSO2Blog, you silly sausage, most outfits are part of a random pool of items you have to pay real money to have a go at. Why is this any different? Well, I will tell you!
The biggest problem is they’re untradable. That’s right, they’re account locked. This means that unlike with Arks Scratch Gold or whatever, if you get something you don’t want you can’t sell it off to someone who may want it! This sucks for everyone, because the people willing to pay don’t get to make any Meseta and the people not willing to pay more than the Premium subscription fee are going to have a significantly harder time getting the outfits they want.
The rest is sort of a compound issue. First, unless you’re willing to spend cash beyond a premium subscription you will be acquiring Stat Gems very slowly. You’ll be getting them faster than you are now at least, as they’ll be changing the login stamp system to include a 5-Stargem ticket every 5 days. This means effectively you’ll be getting 2 per day if premium or 1 per day if freemium. Given it then costs 80 Stargems per attempt, combined with the fact you’re much more likely to get something you don’t want it’s a pretty shit deal.That’s like, one roll every 80 days for freemium and 40 days for premium players, worst case. That’s just to have a try, mind. Remember, it’s random what you get!
Now, we don’t actually know what the odds are for getting the outfits. It’s hard to tell as we don’t know the complete list of items the scratch will include, just that four of them will be outfits. Accessories will presumably be in judging by the fact that Persona’s mark isn’t forced on and there’s a chance that it may include other tickets like makeup or hair.
Ultimately, if you don’t want the Dark Falz outfits anyway you haven’t lost anything, but this situation is a real kick in the teeth for those who have been waiting for them to be released for some time.
I remember when they said that Star Gems would be restricted to stamina bars and things. Either I made that up or they sure turned on that quick…
We’re going to the Sanctum this time! To fight all the dragons, or well most of the dragons. Also featuring Banthers because why not. This limited quest is the main focus of this years PSO2 anniversary and is your typical “run around until you max out the quest points” affair, with presumably the recent trend of ending the quest with some big encounter (which this time seems to be Goron Zoran plus another boss).
Seems like your general Web Event, complete with limited time Xie orders and Bingo cards. The main difference is this time we’ll also have the winners of the Weapon General Election as supposedly all-class 13*s. There is a rumour however that these weapons are incredibly weak (weaker even than Xie’s weapons), though I’m finding it difficult to find a source. They may still potentially fill in some sub-class weapon gaps (at least while Crafting is falling behind).
Boosted Profound Darkness
Double and Profound Darkness will be getting the same treatment that Elder got back in the day it seems. It’s a bit more like Loser’s boosted self for Extra Hard in that the pair of bosses have gained a number of new moves. This will also be lacking the Arks Effect buff present in the current quest.
Seeing as I never got round to posting it, here’s the trailer for it from the 41st broadcast.
While this is cool and all, I feel I need to point out that most of the reason Double and Profound Darkness are so easy in their current form is due to the Arks Effect buff trivializing their attacks. The pair are otherwise the most aggressive and among the hardest hitting bosses in the game. Like if you took the buff away, they’d already be considerably more difficult! I’m sure the additional moves will at least revitalize the quest for some people, though I am concerned that much of the new difficulty may be due to the fact that it’s a sea of particle effects making it difficult to actually mitigate incoming damage. Some attacks also seem like they hit excessively hard, like the chest laser Profound Darkness uses. Seriously, 1800+ damage? Why? Most people are running around with <900HP, even the tankier builds tend to not go over 1500. That level of damage seems excessively high, but it may be what’s required to make the boss remotely challenging to a 12-man MPA. Plus the attack does have a long windup, so it’s probably a lot more fair than the trailer makes it seem. Either way, I look forward to trying it out at least!
This will arrive with a new collection sheet for the “Ray Series” weapons. Not a lot to say about them, other than the fact they seem to have a decent amount of attack power and that I’m not really sure why they felt the need to add a new weapon series for this quest. Ray Sword has 1130 attack on it at +0, which puts it slightly above Seiga Sword and slightly below Sword Revolucio. No details at all on its potential, of course.
They remembered this existed! Don’t panic, I’m sure they’ll forget about it again soon. You can see them in action in the first trailer but I’ll go over them briefly.
Other Cyclone Type Zero
Spin to win, baby! Much like with Twister Fall Zero you can hold the button to spin and spin and spin and spin. What’s more, it doesn’t seem to blow enemies away anymore.
Infinite Fire Type Zero
Remember when Infinite Fire was great? Well I’m not sure if this will bring it back into a usable state as I’m not sure how much additional power it’ll get (the notation shown is 2594% (thanks to this tweet), which is quite a bit higher than its current 1526%) . It does root you in place however, which is pretty risky so it had better be worth it.
Kestral Rampage Type Zero
Consume all your weapon’s Gear Gauge and go fucking apeshit with Dual Blades. It’s nice that they finally got an interesting Photon Art after all this time I guess, though honestly it looks so different to vanilla Kestral Rampage that I’m not sure why they didn’t just make this a new Photon Art. It’s not like Bouncer has too many Photon Arts… That said, it’s nice that they finally got a PA customization at all, though Jet Boots are now somewhat left out.
Type Zero Zonde and Type Zero NaZan
This is an interesting turn up. I did not expect techs to start to receive the same treatment as PA customizations. Zonde ends up being turned into something resembling Sattelite Cannon and NaZan changes into a small amount of damage followed by many small hits as the enemy is trapped in a whirlwind. We’ve seen too little of either tech to make any real assumptions as to what their practical uses are going to be, however.
While these are neat, not sure why it it took so long to have only 6 new customizations added. It still leaves this system dreadfully under-utilized which is a shame, but all the same it’s nice that they added any new ones at all. I wonder how long it will be before they add any more…
New Skill Rings
OK, it’s been a while since I posted. My last post was about the skill ring system. Since then, they’ve added 4 Skill Rings and now 2 more are on the horizon. The 4 they added before were AIS Exclusive rings and they were almost completely awful. Now they’re adding two more rings at least, both of which relate to resisting Status Effects.
Now, in my posts about this I voiced concern that their effort would fizzle out on this like it did with PA Customizations. So far, I feel like I’ve been proven pretty correct. The last four rings added literally nothing to the existing classes as they were just for AIS and these new rings will be added without expanding on the gathering system as they use a new event quest exclusive item named “Pure Photon”. Alright, I won’t deny it, my inventory is happy that they’re taking their time adding new gathering items and I’m not really a fan of the gathering system anyway. So my primary concern rests in the lack of new class augmentations that these rings were meant to provide. I mean there’s still nothing for Rangers in the left ring slot!
That said, it’s only been three months. It’s a little soon to be throwing my hands up all “Hah! I knew it was going to go the way of PA Customizations!”. There aren’t any new skill rings on the longterm schedule, but the schedule isn’t actually all-inclusive (as these new rings weren’t on there either). We’ll see! My cynical asshole senses are tingling that’s all.
As has been the norm for a long time, the collaborations keep on rolling out. I’m not too fussed mind as Collaborations have produced some genuinely cool outfits and it seems like just about anything fits in PSO2’s setting, so they’re really fairly harmless.
This time we have Sakura Wars (and also Hagito) and Final Fantasy 14 stuff. Both of which for the most part look generally fantastic, with some great looking weapon camos thrown in for both collabs.
The FF14 selection includes both Miqo’te male and female outfits, as well as the relic outfits and weapons for White Mage, Black Mage, Dark Knight and Pugilist. Not sure on the gender limitations on the last outfits or if they’re Unisex as the trailer didn’t really demonstrate much. Seems like White Mage and Monk are female and Black Mage and Dark Knight male, which is a slight shame as it could have been an opportunity for some cool female armor. That all aside, the FF14 stuff all looks great. They did a fantastic job with this collaboration.
Question and Answers
Thanks to twitter user @kami_pepe for re-posting and summarizing the questions and answers during the broadcast I can attempt to post a summary of this section of the broadcast. I am however dependent on Google Translate and Bing so this is really my best interpretation. Let me know if I’m grossly wrong. I won’t re-post anything that gets truly mangled of course.
Q: Why is the post-quest photo-op on the deck of the Yamato after we destroyed it?
A: Cause it’s cool! Also because the photo didn’t fit in the landing craft.
Q: Does breaking the guns on Yamato yield extra drops?
Q: What is a summoner’s pet?
A: Artificial life created from Photons. Not to be confused with robots.
Q: What’t the male/female ratio of the development team?
A: About 9:1 male:female.
Q: Are the timelines of PSO2 and the PSO2 Stage Play the same?
A: They’re considered parallel universes.
Q: Will Collection Files come back after they’ve expired?
A: Nope! This will be your only chance to get these weapons via collection files. Once the file expires, it’s gone forever.
I’m tempted to share my thoughts on collection files another time, but suffice to say I’m perplexed by the temporary nature of them. This makes no sense to me, so it’s even more perplexing to hear that they really are a limited-time deal and won’t be available later.
Q: Is there a plan to add more Ultimate Quests?
A: In the distant future, yes.
Yes there was still no Ultimate Amduscia. Who knows when we’ll see it but this does suggest we will see it at some point at least.
Anyway, this was fun to write. Cheers if you read this far and let me know if I got anything horribly wrong.
What’s that? You wanted more slice of life high school anime in your PSO2? Well you’re in luck, my friend, as we’ll be hitting a number of anime tropes late February including a bath scene! I can feel myself dying inside already.
No, don’t get excited. This isn’t Xie, it’s just someone who looks a whole lot like her!
Between this and the actual anime, I will be honest I’m kind of holding out that some actual plot will happen at some point. Will it be this update? Probably not.
There is the persistent mystery of who ESC-A are (the company behind the magical wireless internet they have over there and the owner of the giant blue tower) and why their technology is having the effect that it is. I mean it’s managing to create life out of fantasy and projecting people’s PSO2 characters into the actual Arks fleet. They’re completely faceless at the moment and it’s kinda wierd… Earth also feels incredibly empty as well for a planet full of people, but then so did Harukotan and Amduscia; Both planets with some form of society and intelligent life.
There’s also the fact that all these wierd Arks are meant to be a recent phenomenon and even our boss, Ulc, doesn’t know where they’re coming from. After the events of Chapter 1, we know that they’re projections of characters played by Earthlings, sure. But the Anime is set 1 year prior to the events of Chapter 1 and there is an Arks operative freely travelling between Earth and the Arks Fleet. What’s up with that? By the way I have a horrible habit of getting invested into stupid plots for stupid things…
Part 2 of the Festa
Part 2 will arrive with a new bingo card as well as a new Limited Quest. The new one will function pretty much exactly the same as the current one with a few minor differences:
It will have some different enemies; essentially the ones that didn’t appear in the previous quest
Nemesis weapons will drop instead of Slave weapons
Caligulas seem to drop!
The new bingo is only marginally better than what we have now if only because it gives 20 gold medals instead of 10. It’s still a fairly weak offering compared to cards of the past. I can’t tell if this replaces the current Bingo card or not given the video doesn’t show the menu navigation to it.
Gonna just cut to the chase: this system will only be put in place in Forest, Ruins, Coast and Tokyo. That’s it. Why so few areas? Are they going to expand into others later? If so, why so few at first? I don’t get it.
When I first heard about the gathering system I was immediately cynical about it. We’ve had systems introduced to PSO2 in a half-assed state before and then subsequently completely forgotten about. Photon Art crafting is the major one. As I said at the time, “Prove this cynical shithead wrong, Phantasy Star Crew, see your system through!”. They might still! For all I know the Skill Ring and Cuisine systems might turn out to be excellent. They might expand on the system in a timely manner, eventually opening the system across the entire selection of fields. It’s just that starting off with a measly four is for me, kind of worrying. I’d understand if it was a feature that requires a party, as it’s not a good idea to split up the player-base too much for these things. But this is a solo activity…
I don’t really dislike the idea of gathering as if nothing else it does add some purpose in running around on the planets. The Skill Ring system does have some serious potential to be interesting, as it can augment our character skills in various ways if the listed abilities are anything to go by. For reference:
Double Saber Whirlwind Lv. 1
JG Heavenly Fall Lv. 1
JG Sonic Arrow Lv. 1
DB Snatch Lv. 1
KA Gear G Release Lv. 1
Killing Bonus Lv. 1
No, this is not the entire list (could you imagine?). There were some other skills mentioned as I recall, but I don’t know what they were. Who knows with Cuisines, frankly.
Also come on, we have a volcanic cavern peppered with ore veins and a mining facility filled with abandoned materials. We can’t go mining in the actual mine?
It’s something we’ve known was coming for some time, but the exact nature of the update was left purely to speculation. A certain shot from a teaser trailer for unrelated content showed us a later version of the title counter, which seemed to suggest that we would be getting one new XQ and possibly new floors for the existing ones.
Dengeki recently posted an article talking about the January update, including information on scratches and other uninteresting stuff. This is concerning early January, so presumably these are the final Episode 3 updates.
On January 13th, a new Extreme Quest will be added, with a few restrictions.
It consists of a mere 10 floors and can only be cleared once per week. It also costs 5 Extreme Passes to run at all and as the subtitle suggests it can only be run solo. Clearing the quest will give you a chance at earning a class sticker. That’s it.
No information on new stones or new weapons, so it seems it isn’t quite the Extreme Quest update I was expecting at least. The quest itself does appear to be tough at a glance, with Ultimate bosses being hurled at you along with the above pictured brawl with both Angel and Hunar.
While it’s nice to see a new quest aimed at solo players, it’s a little irritating that such a strict limit and steep cost seems to be placed on it. There’s a chance that once the reward is better understood that this limit may prove necessary. The rewards hinted at so far also don’t seem to justify the apparent difficulty and cost of the quest. Maybe they haven’t revealed all the details yet, but at this point I’m cynical enough to believe that they think a random chance at a bit of aesthetics you can barely see is reward enough.
If this is all there is to the XQ update then I would say I’m extremely disappointed… heh heh… heh.