Towards the Future: Datamining

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The Battle Arena patch was the first one in a while to contain any potentially interesting tidbits about what might be being added to the game in the future in a long time. Sega have generally been more careful about not giving the game away (or they’re working on less stuff…).

Anyway just gonna go over some of the things that were found by myself and others in the community. As always, remember that data-mined content is not representative of content that will be released, as the content might change or might never be released.

Super Yamato?

“PhantomShipEx” was spotted in the client. The reason why it’s signficant is “Ex” was used to denote updated versions of old bosses, including Elder, Loser and Profound Darkness (DpFishElderEx, DpBirdEx and DpAbyssEx respectively). Like the others, it appears to have updated attacks, but there’s no real details as to what these might be.

If this is coming out, it’s not on the current long-term schedule at least. I suspect it’s either going to arrive in the gap between the arrival of Deus Esca and Episode 5 or possibly even happen after Episode 5 is released. I guess this also potentially means that Hagito isn’t dead afterall…

PSU Collab Part 3

It seems that Laia and Lumia will be joining us in the Arks lobby for part 3, if the text files are anything to go by. So with that information i guess we can speculate what kind of items are gonna be added.

Lumia_psp2

Lumia sports the Guardians Uniform F, which is an outfit already available in the game. Lumia used a Rod, so it seems safe to assume that she’ll hand out some kind of 13* rod like Emilia did. Honestly not a heck of a lot to say about Lumia as she wasn’t a terribly interesting character in general despite getting such heavy focus during Episode 3’s story.

Laia on the other hand wears the Guardians Formal outfit by the end of PSU, which was one of my favorite outfits in the entire game. The outfit she’s wearing on the right was her original costume, but I assume that’s not going to be the one she’s wearing judging by the promo pic for the PSU event. Here’s a pic of Guardians Formal from PSU in case you’ve never seen it before. I kind of hope the PSO2 incarnation doesn’t look as tacky as some other PSU outfits ended up looking. I’m also curious to see how the physics on the outfit will end up looking; is the coat tail gonna be glued to the legs like in PSU or is it gonna flap wildly like a number of recent dresses in PSO2…

Laia is also a Beast, which is a race that PSO2 never got (even though it was in the data files here and there!), which has certain physical features not available to any race in PSO2. So I suspect what they’ll do is create a unique face model just for her, which is kind of nuts but they’ve done it before with Miku and Luka. I’m curious to see what she’ll end up looking like in PSO2.

As for her weapon…. she uses an axe and twin claws in PSU, so either a Sword or Wired Lance if I had to guess.

Future Enemies?

Occasionally, future enemies turn up in the data. The last major time this happened was with DPP1, which later turned out to be Escafalz Mother. There was also Ultimate Amduscia enemies which turned up in the data a full year before they were finally implemented.

Anyway so some new ones turned up with a completely new naming scheme:

  • B1SkSw
  • B1SkAr
  • B1GoSw
  • B1GoBo
  • B1Min
  • B1WoN
  • B1WoF
  • B1OrN
  • B1OrBo
  • B1CatsA

Completely unlike anything we’ve seen before. You’ve probably noticed there’s a pattern to the names, such as “Sw, Ar and Bo” and “Sk, Go, Wo and Or”. What could these mean? Sword, Assault Rifle and er, Bow or Boots? The next four are anyone’s guess and what on earth does the “B1” mean anyway?

Poking around in the AI files determined the following:

  • B1SkAr has an attack involving arrows – So it’d seem the “Ar” may stand for “Archer”
  • B1GoBo has a “Bom” attack. The Bo can be assumed to stand for Bomb, then.
  • B1OrN has a “club” attack. It using a club makes me think it could be something brutish, so could the “Or” stand for Orc or Ogre?
  • B1WoN has various biting attacks. Could the Wo stand for wolf?
  • B1Min has various slashing attacks and has Warcry…

The rest of the files either have setup stuff or nothing terribly interesting. Remember, this is content that is likely still being developed,  so a lot of likely to be missing.

So what we see is seemingly a selection of enemies with primitive tech. To hazard a guess, maybe these enemies are based on western fantasy tropes? Perhaps the “Go” stands for Goblin, the “Sk” for Skeleton and the “Min” for Minotaur? This is just wild speculation of course, I might be miles off the mark but being wrong is often part of the fun of speculating.

As these enemies don’t really fit into Episode 4’s naming schemes and seeing as Episode 4 seems to be coming to a end soon it’s plausible we might be seeing the first hints of Episode 5 content here. Could we really be heading to a medieval western fantasy land? We could, but I feel like it’d be a bit weird going up against Goblins and Orcs while wielding laser swords.

This would also continue their departure from the science fiction-y setting that fans have missed since we went to Space Japan in Episode 3 then actual Japan in Episode 4. Like I’m sure people who were hoping we’d go back to space again once we were done with Earth’s bullshit will be disappointed if my speculations turn out to be right. Who knows though, even if it does turn out to be Orcs and Skeletons it might be Space Orcs and Space Skeletons! Or it could end up being something completely different.

Towards the Future: Elite Blocks

gettin_upstaged

Sega is considering adding special blocks which will require players to have cleared specific content before they’re allowed to enter. The aim of this is to filter out unskilled players so that they can design more difficult content down the line without the issues that this presents right now. Currently, their idea is to have the requirement be to have cleared Heaven and Hell floors 1-5, but this may change in the future as its still under discussion. This lock is allegedly going to be treated as a kind of “entrance exam” for the harder content they want to do.

The Scrub Problem


It’s something that seems to have been on some players’ minds for some time, but now even Sega is considering a solution to this problem. So you want to run endgame content, to team up with your peers and take down tough enemies that would either be too difficult or take too long to do by yourself? So you hop on down from your campship and lo and behold, your peers are carrying un-grinded blue weapons or whatever 10-11* junk they happened to find and are proudly adourning their ungrinded unaffixed Gal Griffon units. Then you check out their classes and find that if they even have a subclass at all it’s a completely bizarre one like HuFo or SuRa and it’s only lv10 or so… shit.

Yeah running things like Mining Base or any lv80 raid boss that isn’t Yamato with people who freshly reached lv75 but haven’t addressed their gear yet can be a wholesomely frustrating experience. There’s not much you can do about it personally, as you’re at the mercy of real RNG essentially as to who you end up with when you join a group. Thankfully, the problem is largely mitigated by the fact that most runs can be carried by a handful of well geared players but this does present somewhat of a design problem for Sega.

Now I’m gonna go on record by saying that I don’t hate people who are under-geared by default and most shouldn’t either. Generally speaking, they’re not joining runs to ruin your day and the vast majority are not joining your run to be a “leech” either. They may be genuinely unaware that their gear matters all that much (thanks to how PSO2 is designed, this is fairly common) or that their performance is sub-par or it could just be that the very quest they joined is their only choice to get the gear they need for varying reasons. I may go into detail discussing this in another post..

For Difficulty’s Sake


Sega’s stance with PSO2 has been one where veterans and scrubs alike can play together. There’s nothing wrong with this goal on the face of it, it’s just that it does limit their design somewhat. They can’t make harder content because of it, I mean in the grand scheme of things the recently buffed Profound Darkness is incredibly easy and that’s already annoying enough with a party with enough fresh 75s in it. Imagine if there was a run which required everyone to be well built, well geared and deeply familiar with their class as a baseline? It’d be an utter nightmare to queue for.

The addition of some kind of filter should in theory help alleviate this problem, though difficulty in its own right is a complex issue. Designing hard content for a multiplayer game goes beyond just challenging people’s gear and knowledge; it involves teamwork too.

As a good example, look at Challenge Mode: Mission Start. Clearing this quest requires predetermined roles to be filled, which are often negotiated at the start of the quest. You need someone to tag unkillable bosses, someone to pick up VR capsules, someone to be taken by the Fanji who can burn down Dark Ragne quickly among other things I’ve likely forgotten. PSO2 in general doesn’t really have many teamwork mechanics, there’s only really a few I can think of that actually work:

  • Techer Shifta and Deband
  • Zondeel
  • Zanverse
  • Weakbullet

That’s it. Those are really all the viable team-work mechanics (that arent “do damage”) and they can all be done by 2 different classes. If you combined those two together you’d get the fabled “ultimate support” but you should probably never run that build…

Now, before you start, yes I know there are other skills that are “teamwork” oriented but I said “viable”. Unfortunately, most of the skills in the game outside of these just aren’t effective enough in the current state of things to really be useful. Chain is a bit of an outlier, as you minorly benefit from others using normal attacks in order for your Chain Finish to be all the more powerful.

Essentially, PSO2 has three roles a player can fill:

  • DPS
  • Techer
  • Weakbullet – the giver of which is also a DPS

That’s it! This isn’t actually a criticism in case it sounds like one, I don’t necessarily mind things being like this as I have my issues with games employing the old “holy trinity” system among other things. It just means that they’re much more limited in terms of what they can design, because there aren’t really many roles for them to exploit from just the classes alone.

Again, this isn’t necessarily a problem. Like imagine if there were 12 different defined roles that players needed to fill. Can you imagine how much of a nightmare it would be to cobble such a group together from randoms?

Anyway I think I’ve ranted enough about this aspect. The thing to take away from this I feel is the players want harder content, the devs want to give us harder content, but due to how PSO2 is designed this won’t make things easy to pull off.

The Entrance Exam


So ignoring the difficulties of making difficult content, is the entrance exam they propose appropriate? Would it work? Are other tests more appropriate or is the whole idea potentially bad for the game as a whole?

The proposal is for the “Solo Extreme Quest” Heaven and Hell floors 1-5. Anyone who has run the quest should know that 6-10 is considerably harder than 1-5 which is a fair enough point. It’s not a terribly high bar to pass but it is a bar; there are plenty of players who, with the gear they turn up to endgame raid quests with, couldn’t even do that! So in theory it could act as a filter against fresh or lazy lv75s.

Of course the community has proposed their own ideas, including having floors 6-10 be the requirement, clearing XH Traces of Darkness in less than 8 minutes (solo), doing a direct build/gear/affix check before you’re allowed to enter among other things.

A potential problem with having an entrance exam be too strict is it may filter out otherwise decent players that aren’t specifically built for the entrance exam. Glass-cannon DPS will find Heaven and Hell 6-10 extremely difficult compared to a tankier build. You wouldn’t want an MPA filled with tanks though would you? Similarly, XH Traces of Darkness is awful for builds that would otherwise be a god-send to your MPA.

So what about gear? It shouldn’t be difficult to check for +10/+40 on weapons, or +10 on armor. It gets trickier when you then add in crafting, weapon rarity, weapon potentials, element choice and build synergy. Then there’s affixes! There’s all sorts of issues with affixes as there’s not really a “one size fits all” build for them. There’s also the issue that under the current gearing meta, affixes add a barely significant amount to your DPS anyway (most of it is coming from your weapon and build). Even if you could add such rigorous checks, you still run the risk of pigeonholing people too narrowly, again filtering out players that may be beneficial to your raid group.

Then there’s builds. As you can imagine, creating checks for builds could be a very complicated problem; especially again as you might want someone to be in what would otherwise be an inefficient build (say, TeSu) but is otherwise a very powerful support character (TeSu has the strongest Zanverse in the game as far as I know). Even the simpler check of class/subclass is prone to letting bad players through; FiHu sounds like a safe bet but they could be a wierd Guard-Stance build oriented around Chase Advance. Or a FoTe who still thinks it’s 2012 and is running a Lightning focused tree using Photon Flare.The specific builds are unimportant, the big thing is testing based on a build is prone to ignoring useful edge-cases and may make dangerous assumptions on “accepted” builds.

Essentially, pigeonholing by having too strict a set of entry requirements would limit their ability to design challenging content in much the same way as letting everyone play together regardless of build or gearing would. It’d be a self-defeating system.

Finally there’s the question of is this healthy for the game in the long term? Consider the case where we have a good, reliable entrance exam that filters out the scrubs. Great, the veterans can all band together and play hard content in harmony. But what’s preventing them from playing the easy content this way too? Consider an easy-ish raid Emergency Quest comes along. The veterans all pile into their elite blocks to avoid the filthy noobs, you now have nothing but noobs piled together. This could make runs much more frustrating for them than they need to be and it may even trap them in progression hell if they actually need to complete those quests to graduate into the elite blocks.

If handled right, having a pile of noobs together could work out, because as they can’t be carried by a veteran it could force them to learn how to play the game better. This may also highlight their gear/DPS shortcomings and force them to gear up so they themselves can get better runs. So it’s not all potential doom and gloom, I’m just not 100% convinced it’d actually work out this way.

Anyway, this was a long-ass rant. I felt I had a lot to say on this subject but ultimately it’s just my opinion. I’m likely wrong on some things. If you made it this far, thank you for reading and I hope what i wrote was enjoyable or thought provoking in some way.

Vegas Patch: Datamining

oracle_yaaay

We couldn’t have a 2.5GB patch without some new tidbits to comb over and speculate on, surely? Well actually we could have… there have been larger patches in the past which just updated content we already had. This post wouldn’t be happening if there weren’t a few things to go through however! So this is was not one of those notorious patches.

As always, remember that datamined information is unearthing content that’s still heavily in development. As a result, things may change before content goes live or it may not even be added at all. Also somewhat self explanatory is that such data may contain spoilers for the story. I’ll warn when spoilery stuff starts.

Icons – Phantasy Star Universe Goodies.


The community has extracted a bunch of icons for weapons and outfits from client. They were all uploaded to Imgur galleries here for weapons and enemies  and here for costumes/parts.

As you can probably see, there’s a bunch of PSU items in there which are almost certainly related to the upcoming PSU Anniversary event. This event still has no date as far as I know.

Among them are Crea Doubles and Huge Cutter, pictured above. Given how disappointing the likes of Stag Cutlery ended up looking in PSO2 I’m not holding out much hope for Crea Doubles but who knows. As long as they get the photon effect and weapon scale right it should be fine. If the text data is correct, you can get these weapons via limited Client Orders.

Ethan’s Illuminus coat and Mirei’s dress are the two new costumes. Ethan’s old Braves Jacket and Karen’s outfit were both already added to the game some time ago as part of some promotional deal I’ve long forgotten about.

More Phantasy Star Universe Stuff


As you can probably guess, Ethan and Karen are going to be the temporary NPCs added for the event. The pair of them give out Client Orders and the indications are you’ll be able to get their Partner Cards. While Ethan seems to wield a Huge Cutter, Karen wields Daggers of Serafi.

Along with weapons, there are a few affixes referencing PSU:

  • TENORA Boost: +35 S-Atk
  • GRM Boost: +35 R-Atk
  • YOHMEI Boost: +35 T-Atk

Essentially the Noble Boosts but without the PP. These are referring to the three main weapon manufacturers in PSU while roughly aligning with their specialties.

There’s also an Airboard lobby action. With it you could dress up as Ethan, trigger the Phantom Cars Etrial in Tokyo and recreate the greatest scene in PSU.

ethan0car1

As far as the data shows, this is it for the Phantasy Star Universe event. We might see if there’s anything else in the next live broadcast in a few days.

Enemies


The majority of the enemies aren’t worth mentioning in this post as you can go fight many of them yourself in today’s Story Quest. There’s a couple among the icons that warrant brief mention however:

These two appear to be Phantom Laplace and Phantom Maxwell. I’m guessing this is so as Laplace’s AI summons Maxwells and well, one of these is quite a bit larger than the other… They took the philosophical concepts of Laplace and Maxwell’s demons fairly literally it seems. I also can’t help but think of Monster’s Inc a bit here…

New Enemies

Beyond Las Vegas, a bunch of new enemy names have shown up in the client and well… let’s just say they’re fairly interesting if you’ve been sticking around PSO2 for some time.

OK, the spoiler warning is here. Don’t read beyond this point if you don’t want potential spoilers for the story. If you’re good with spoilers, then carry on!

Continue reading “Vegas Patch: Datamining”

43rd Broadcast Thoughts

TEAM_BETHOR

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

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.

FF_Odin
Comes complete with FATE JOINED message. FATEs are essentially FFXIV’s equivalent of Emergency Trials, so it’s a nice touch.

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.

Weapons

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.

aura_weapon

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.

LV_esca_tower
Notably, but not surprisingly, the Las Vegas field has an ESCA tower just like Tokyo. 

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.

Enemies

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.

ball_cowskull

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.

Phantom Sniper

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.

Phantom Biker

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.

Phantom Caravan

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.

caravan

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.

Phantom Goddess

phantom_goddess

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.

Phantom Maxwell

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!

Phantom Laplace

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.

Phantom Vulture:

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.

Phantom “Track”

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”.

Phantom UFO

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.

Phantom Dog

Bark! The AI has a dash attack and a “fire” attack.

Phantom Roach

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.

 

 

Questions Corner

 

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.

  1. Because if we didn’t, people with multiple accounts would take advantage of it given we distribute SG for free.
  2. 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.

 

Ultimate Amduscia!??!?

 

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.

UldDuscia

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.

The Ring System

 

Lisa_in_Tokyo

The Skill-Ring system was one of the things shown during the 38th broadcast and then mildly teased a bit further in the 39th broadcast recently. It seems to be a way to further tweak our characters by augmenting actions and granting access to class skills.

Here I’ll be trying to gather whatever known information there is out there from various sources, including Bumped, Gheaven, analysis of the early March update trailer and wherever else I find information. There’s also going to be some speculation strewn about for good measure. Added some additional notes from this post on PSO-World concerning a newer Gheaven post here. 

Thanks to Mewn and EspioKaos for help with clarifying some details. Thanks also to Agrajag for assistance with obtaining data.

Please let me know if anythings inaccurate or if I’m speculating on stuff that’s been established elsewhere.

Basic Info

Just gonna go over some of the basic stuff here in a kind of sketchy detail.

  • You exchange materials obtained from the gathering system as well as other items and Meseta for rings.
  • You have two ring slots;  a left ring and a right ring. You can only have one of either ring equipped at a time.
  • Left Rings seem to exclusively be action augments of some kind. Things that will alter the way you do things, such as attacking, guarding and even altering class skills
  • Right Rings seem to exclusively be about granting access to off-class skills without requiring you to sub-class for it..For example, it can let you use PP Convert even if you aren’t a Techer main or sub.
  • Rings can be upgraded through fusing materials with them in the Item Lab.
  • Left Rings have stats attached. These stats can be upgraded through the Item Lab.
  • Rings have EXP bars. You earn EXP for your equipped rings by killing monsters. It’s uncertain if Client Orders will also contribute. I don’t know what benefits there are to levelling rings this way.
Materials and Exchanges

ringexchange

They didn’t show many exchanges during the trailer and unfortunately the kanji is kind of blurry so I can’t make out the exact names of some things. Here’s a rough list anyway:

  • L / JG Sonic Arrow – Naberu Rock x 3, Amethyst x 1, 30000 Meseta
  • L / JG Heavenly Fall – Vopal Rock x 3, Sapphire x 1, 30000 Meseta
  • L / JG Rising Flag – Ice Rock x 3, Opal x 1, 30000 Meseta
  • L / DS Whirlwind –   Ice Rock x 3, Opal x 1, 30000 Meseta
  • L / TD Air Chase – Naberu Rock x 3, Emerald x 6, Lambda Grinder x 15, 30000 Meseta

It’s hard to say how expensive these are given we have no idea at present how long it will take to get each material. That said, it seems one of these items is a bit more expensive than the others, for reasons I can’t really pin down. Like the difference in material cost seems almost arbitrary.

I’m uncertain on “Ice Rock” by the way. The only reason I’ve listed it as Ice is its the name that ends up easiest to read for me. It isn’t the usual rendering of “ice” as in romaji the above material is written as  “a-su” whereas ice is “aisu”. Another potential name is “Ace” but that’s rendered as “e-su”. Pronouncing “a-su” is closer to “arse” than any of the above and as amused as I am by the notion of an “Arse Rock”  that’s probably not it either! So yeah, I’m not a translator so suggestions welcome there.

Ring Abilities

ppconvertring

This is a gathering of all the Rings I’ve seen posted around. This may not be a complete list of all the revealed rings and there’s also a chance that some people were bullshitting, so take it with a bit of salt.

Descriptions written in pink are a speculation.

Left Ring

 

  • L / Double Saber Whirlwind  – Automatically activated whirlwind after certain attacks with a Double Saber. This does not consume gear but it’s still bound by whirlwind limit.
  • L / JG Heavenly Fall*  – Activate Heavenly Fall on a successful JG with a Wired Lance
  • L / JG Sonic Arrow* – Activate Sonic Arrow on a successful JG with a Sword
  • L / JG Rising Flag* – Activate Rising Flag on a successful JG with a Partizan
  • L / Hunter Gear Save  – Slows down gear loss for Swords and reduces gear consumed by Hunter weapons. Requires Hunter Gear Boost to be satisfied.
  • L / Knuckle Chase – Automatically moves you towards the target with Knuckle normal attacks while you’re on the ground.
  • L / TD Air Chase – Automatically chase enemies with Twin Dagger while mid-air. Works with normal attacks and some PAs.
  • L / Katana Gear Guard R – Holding guard for 3 seconds will activate Katana Gear even if nothing was blocked. Requires the gauge to be full. Alters the way Gear is consumed if activated this way.
  • L / Short Combat – Attacks during Katana Combat no longer track.
  • L / DB Snatch – Adds a snatch-step effect to Dual Blade’s shift action.
  • L / Tech C Parrying – Just-Guards attacks while charging techs with a tech weapon. Presumably works like Hunter’s Charge Parrying.
  • L / Recast Reverser Field – Reduces the cooldown of Reverser Field.
  • L / High Time Keep – May preserve High Time if you take damage. Only works while Showtime is active.
  • L / Front S-Roll –You can perform a forward S-Roll with TMGs

* Attacks launched this way will count as a Just-Counter and will have all bonuses of a Just-Attack. It isn’t know if they will consume PP.

 

Right Ring

Right Rings have so far exclusively been class skills. These will allow you to use the skill attached to them on other classes, though there are apparently restrictions still. You cannot use a Skill Ring on the class from which the skill was taken (for example, a Hunter cannot use the Massive Hunter ring). There is no mention if this applies to sub-class Hunter. The skills match their class skills, so there’s no need for a description of them.

  • R / Killing Bonus  – Cannot be equipped by Ranger.
  • R / Massive Hunter – Cannot be equipped by Hunter.
  • R / PP Convert – Cannot be equipped by Techer.
  • R / Attack Advance – Cannot be equipped by Braver
  • R / Boost Slayer (Gathering Order reward) – Deal bonus damage to and take less damage from boosted enemies.
  • R / Critical Strike Melee
  • R / Critical Strike Ranged
  • R / Critical Strike Tech
    • The above three rings cannot be equipped by Fighter.
  • R / Perfect Keeper Melee
  • R / Perfect Keeper Ranged
  • R / Perfect Keeper Tech
    • The HP threshold is unspecified. These cannot be equipped by Gunner.
  • R / Photon Flare – Cannot be equipped by Force
  • R / Element PP Restore Field – Cannot be equipped by Bouncer

Boost slayer is an interesting one, for reasons I’ll go into later in the post.

Unknown

I haven’t seen anything to confirm which ring slot these go into, though you can likely speculate given the established rings so far.

Ring Stats

Left rings seem to be the only ones to have stats on them. They also seem to be limited to boosting three stats in particular. Going down the list once more:

  • L / JG Sonic Arrow – S-Atk, R-Atk and Dex
  • L / JG Heavenly Fall – S-Atk, R-Atk and Dex
  • L / JG Rising Flag –  S-Atk, R-Atk and Dex
  • L / DS Whirlwind –  S-Atk, T-Atk and Dex
  • L / TD Air Chase – S-Atk, T-Atk and Dex

The sample size is small, but so far it seems to be focused on attack power and the pattern is consistently 2 attack stats and Dexterity.

 

Ring Upgrading

duduring

Yeah, you gotta take your rings to Dudu and you’ll also note that the success rating is in blue so there’s a chance to fail as well. This particular ring (L / DS Whirlwind) requires 3x Ice Rock and 5x Grinder as well as 30,000 Meseta. Not cheap for a grind but not that expensive. Again, it’s difficult to pass judgement as we don’t know how long it will take to get the rocks required.
ringupgradestats

Note that when you grind a ring, at least a left ring anyway, you can select which stat you wish to level in the first drop-down menu on the left. After you’ve done so, you’re presented with the above window, showing you the change you’re about to apply.

In the case of DS Whirlwind, you can choose between S-atk, R-atk and  Dexterity.

Note that the upgrade also raises the level of the ring’s ability by 1 as well.

It isn’t known what the cap is on ring upgrading, but pictures so far have shown Lv20 rings so that might well be it. Notably the text next to the level is orange when they’re lv20 as well. As you can only choose one stat per upgrade I’d imagine it’d be smart to just focus on one stat for any ring as you probably won’t have enough room to make it a good hybrid. I mean Mags go up to lv200 and you still can’t make an adequate hybrid so…

It’s speculated that rings gain EXP through killing monsters, but there’s no indication as far as I know as to what Ring EXP actually does. Grinding and levelling ring abilities and stats seems to be separate from Ring EXP, so I’m at a bit of a loss here.

 

Datamining

No, there’s no data in the client telling us what the rings all are. However, some old data may well be relevant again for this system and I’ll explain why in this section.

Remember R / Boost Slaying from earlier? Well it and L / Tech C Parrying seem to be revivals of unreleased class skills that have been in the client for some time. Specifially, Fighter’s “Boost Slayer” skill and Force’s “Rod Charge Guard”, although in the latter case it seems the Rod requirement may have been dropped.

As such, I think it’s reasonable to assume that other unreleased skills may well see themselves being turned into Rings. I mean they’ve done this before with weapon potentials too, with Fighter’s “GiantKilling” skill being turned into the potential for Ideal-series weapons. So in this section I’m going to list a number of unreleased skills for speculation.

Where possible, I’ve made notes next to skills I feel are unlikely to be added, skills that are similar to skills possessed by other classes and skills that were turned into potentials already. I’ve also omitted any skills that were just upgrades of currently existing skills, such as Guard Stance Advance 2 and Zero Range Advance 3, as I feel they’re almost certainly not getting revived. This list is mostly just to stimulate speculation on potential future rings. Note that these are internal names, not the names you end up seeing in-game.

Bouncer

Bouncer has no unreleased skills at all. Ho hum.

Braver

  • Victim Likely abandoned. 
  • VictimBomb Likely abandoned. 

Braver only has two skills which seem to belong to an abandoned idea for a mechanic. Who knows what this could have ended up being, but given the skills are dependent on each other it seems unlikely to return in ring form.

Fighter

  • AirStrike – Not to be confused with the Bouncer skill of a similar name. This is an unreleased Fighter skill, but odds are it’s now abandoned.
  • BoostKilling – This has actually been revealed in the teased content so far. 
  • BreakMaster – Not to be confused with the Bouncer skill of a similar name. This is an unreleased Fighter skill, but odds are it’s now abandoned.
  • ElderSlayer Likely abandoned. 
  • GiantKilling – Turned into the weapon potential for the Ideal series weapons. 
  • None_Guard Likely abandoned. 
  • NotoriousnessKilling Likely abandoned. 
  • PotentialBlowFighter Likely abandoned. 
  • RareBoostFighterDoubleSaber Unlikely. 
  • RareBoostFighterGunSlash Unlikely.
  • RareBoostFighterKnuckle Unlikely.
  • RareBoostFighterTwinDagger Unlikely.
  • RareEnemyKlling Likely abandoned. 
  • ThirdAct Likely abandoned. 

Fighter has a number of skills, one of which is confirmed as a Skill Ring. The rest were either re-worked for other classes or turned into potentials. “ThirdAct” is likely an abandoned mechanic for the class and it doesn’t even have any data to suggest what it might have been.

Force

  • BlastForce
  • DarkTechnicShortCharge
  • ElectroPress
  • ElectroShock
  • ForceAssist
  • ForceSense
  • IceTechnicShortCharge
  • LightTechnicShortCharge
  • MassiveFlare
  • MirageEscapeAdvance
  • PhotonCircle
  • PotentialForceForce Likely abandoned. 
  • PPRegenerate – Not to be confused with the Techer skill of a similar name. This is an unreleased Force skill, but odds are it’s now abandoned.
  • RapidBlast – Not to be confused with the Bouncer skill of a similar name. This is an unreleased Force skill, but odds are it’s now abandoned.
  • RareBoostForceGunSlash  Unlikely. 
  • RareBoostForceRod  Unlikely. 
  • RareBoostForceTalis  Unlikely. 
  • RodChargeGuard – This has actually been revealed in the teased content so far. 
  • RodKeepBonus
  • Spread
  • TechNonChargeSave
  • ThunderTechnicShortCharge
  • WindTechnicShortCharge

Force has a large number of unreleased skills that could be turned into rings. As they’re tech element specific, it could mean Force may have yet another tremendous gear treadmill to look forward to. Hopefully not, but it would be kind of business as usual for Forces.

Gunner

  • ChainFinishStar
  • DanceTime
  • PotentialShootGunner Likely abandoned. 
  • RareBoostGunnerGunSlash  Unlikely. 
  • RareBoostGunnerTwinMachineGun  Unlikely. 
  • SRollStar
  • TwinmachinegunGearPlus

While Gunner has fewer unreleased skills, I feel a number of these could potentially be revived as rings, especially if some of these kills augment showtime in various ways.

Hunter

  • AdvanceGuard
  • BlowAssist
  • BraveGuard
  • GuardAbsorber
  • GuardStanceAutoMate
  • GuardStanceHeal
  • HoldDiffence
  • JustGuardAdvance
  • JustGuardMaster
  • JustGuardStan
  • PotentialBlowHunter Likely abandoned. 
  • RareBoostHunterGunSlash   Unlikely. 
  • RareBoostHunterPartisan   Unlikely. 
  • RareBoostHunterSword   Unlikely. 
  • RareBoostHunterWiredLance   Unlikely. 
  • Sacrifice
  • StrikeSense
  • SweetMate
  • WarHowl
  • WarSpirit

Hunter competes with Force for number of unreleased skills and number of potential rings. Some of these are legacy skills from the 2nd Alpha, but could easily come back.

Ranger

  • BulletKeepGs – THIS THING.
  • Concentrate
  • Engineer
  • OneMoreTrap
  • PotentialShootRanger Likely abandoned. 
  • RareBoostRangerGunSlash  Unlikely. 
  • RareBoostRangerLauncher  Unlikely. 
  • RareBoostRangerRifle  Unlikely. 
  • ReloadBindAdd
  • ReloadWeakAdd
  • ShootAssist
  • ShooterSite
  • ShootingSense
  • SupportFire
  • TrapFlashCustom
  • WeakSnipeAddPB
  • ZeroRangeBonus1  – Not to be confused with the Gunner skill of a similar name. This is an unreleased Ranger skill, but odds are it’s now abandoned.

Another class with a large selection of potential skill rings. Though a number would augment bullet skills that no one in their right mind should be using anyway!

Summoner

  • AllJAComboUp
  • AllJAUp
  • SummonerJAPPSave  – Nope.
  • TamingMaster

As Summoner can’t Just-Attack, you can guess that most of these aren’t ever arriving as class skills. That said, I could see potential rings that boost all power when landing a Just Attack. TamingMaster is a bit more difficult to call..

Techer

  • DebandProtection
    • Grants a iron will effect to those affected by the user’s Deband.
  • MirageAdvance
  • PanicAdvance
  • PoisonAdvance
  • PoisonIgnitionUP
  • PotentialBlowTecher Likely abandoned. 
  • PotentialForceTecher Likely abandoned. 
  • PPConvertForce Likely abandoned. 
  • PPConvertStrike Likely abandoned. 
  • RareBoostTecherGunSlash Unlikely. 
  • RareBoostTecherTalis Unlikely. 
  • RareBoostTecherWandUnlikely. 
  • TerritoryBurstAdvance
  • TerritoryPower

Like Force, Techer has some potential in its unreleased skills That said, Territory Burst is no longer an active skill like it used to be, so I’m not sure the augments for it are really applicable any more.

That’s all for the data. Remember, odds are a lot of the skills I didn’t tag as “likely abandoned” probably are abandoned and may not return as skill rings. Also note that Summoner and Bouncer lack the RareBoostClassWeapon skills as well as Potential skills, suggesting that those are abandoned ideas unlikely to return. If it’ll help, I may go over this list in the future and make an attempt to describe what some of these skills do based on their stats. There are no official descriptions for almost all of these and the stats listed under the skill may not be adequate enough to guess what the skill does.

Thoughts

I gotta say, this is about the only system in PSO2 as of late that I’ve had any genuine interest over. Some of the skill rings revealed such as Knuckle Chase could significantly alter how you use the weapons and thus have a measurable impact on the gameplay. Anything like that is welcome to me, as long as it’s well thought out of course!

I’m not so sure about the stat augments on the left rings and having to level them up in a Mag-like fashion. That said, the stat bonuses seem to be pretty low so I doubt they’re really worth worrying about.

As always with any new system involving items comes the question of how much of a grind is it going to be. Let’s just save comment on that until the system it out in a couple of weeks, eh?

I still maintain some cynicism about the release schedule of the content however, as the gathering system will only apply to four areas of the game out of the fifteen or so that are available for them to put things in. While the data-mining may suggest that there’s a good amount of material to expand into, this could still end up like Photon Art Customization did and that would be a real shame for something with such interesting potential.

Of course I also suspect that it’ll soon be established which Skill Ring may be the one ring to rule them all, the one ring to find them, the one ring to bring them all and in the meta bind them. It could well be that it may be beneficial to swap out rings mid-run however for various reasons, which if so I hope we get some kind of command to do it via a hotkey or macro.

Datamining Tidbits

doodlebug

That didn’t take long. Pretty much the moment after I published the other post in fact.

So all I’m gonna do here is recap some of the stuff found today. There is other datamined information out there but it’s better suited to other posts so I’m gonna leave those out. Mostly stuff with regard to Dark Falz and Ultimate.

As always, as all of this isn’t officially announced (aside maybe one thing) the content here may change or never actually make it to release. Don’t treat it as confirmation of anything!

New Emergency Quests

Oh, my favorite. There’s one in which you fight Dark Falz Elder and Loser, one after the other and an unnamed one which has a unique PSE condition. In this quest, PSE rates are boosted if people are wearing swimsuits. So that’s a first for the game; a quest which is affected by what your character is wearing.

The Elder/Loser Quest is named 来襲せし虚なる深遠の躯.

Future Limited Quests

Aside the Max Attack quest which we already know about (Which is presumed to be named “混沌まねく未知なる影”) there is one more.

境界を貫く双角の凶鳥, for now translated as “Border Breaking Bird” occurs on the altered Naberius field, otherwise known as Ultimate Naberius. This seems to almost certainly be the Gal Gryphon quest, so it’s nice to know where in the game this is taking place. It also appears that Anga Fundarge can spawn in the quest, joy of joys. Related to this, it seems that Bingo Orders that require Lv51+ Aberrations are included, so the area seems likely to be populated by them. I don’t know if they’ll have the full HP of their Ultimate Quest counterparts or not.

There’s also an unnamed story quest but who cares about the story. No data on it yet.

Sonic Fever

Sonic Nyau unsurprisingly comes with its own “Fever” affix in the form of Sonic Fever. It boosts all attack stats by 20 and PP by 4, making it by far the best Fever affix to date. It is essentially all of the Flict affixes in one (with 1 extra PP)!

While is a powerful affix, I think it’s probably going to be a fairly uncommon one to the point where it won’t make the Flicts worthless. I think this partly because this affix will only be available once a year, whereas the Flicts can be farmed all year round. It does however mean that all-round units just got a bit stronger. Take the theoretical combination of Apprentice Soul, Modulator, Sonic Fever and Ability III for example. This would grant 105 to all attack types, meaning it’s pretty much a universal combination that works for all classes. Due to the anticipated scarcity and limited availability of the affix however I imagine this combo would be prohibitively expensive to produce.

Photon Art Customisation

It seems that work has begun on infrastructure to allow Photon Art customization to happen. During an interview some time ago, it was said that they were considering allowing players to customize Photon Arts in the same way they can for Techniques now, though nothing has come of it until this.

Personally, I’m on the fence about this. I didn’t really enjoy customizing Techs much so I’m loathe to the idea of Photon Arts getting the same treatment. The worst bit for me is the randomness involved in creating that “perfect” combination of stats for a given Tech recipe. However, I’m for it because I think it’s also only fair that you should be able to customize all of the Photon Arts rather than just the magical ones. I wonder if it’s going to be its own crafting type or if they’ll extend tech crafting to accommodate it?

Aside that, every class will be getting 2 more skill points in exchange for 6 class Excubes each. That’s all for now, though this may not be the end of the data-mining for this particular patch…

Credit goes to Agrajag for finding this data.

Datamined Photon Art Info

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Along with character base stats, Agrajag of psumods managed to find, extract and format the Photon Art stats. Now, before you go getting excited and leaping in to find out which Photon Arts are now going to rock I’m afraid to say that a good chunk of this data is essentially worthless. Here are some good reasons as to why:

  • Satellite Cannon is slated to have its power reduced. Its current power at lv16 is displayed as 522, its future power is listed as 4436!
  • The old power of 522 is a pretty horrible indicator of just how powerful Satellite Cannon is anyway.
  • The same is essentially true of Ilmegid, Ilgrants and Cosmos Breaker
  • There is often no way to determine what part of the Photon Art the power rating is referring to. Is it the combined power of all parts of the attack or not? Is it referring to the charged or uncharged version?

Essentially it has been well known for a while that the display stats for Photon Arts and Technics are either deceptive or outright wrong. This makes comparisons for the sake of determining what has changed hard to impossible in terms of power. OK, you could maybe do so for a select few Photon Arts which have neither charge time or multiple hits (like Twister Fall) but otherwise for a comparison you would need to determine what they were referring to and what they are going to refer to in the future. While apparently it was said that the display numbers would now display their “true” damage, or at least damage you’re likely to get from the photon art, this still makes actual comparison very difficult. Someone has had a considerable go at it, attempting to use the “actual mods” where they can for the sake of comparison, but again it’s not the most useful gauge for a lot of abilities. That said, so far it’s the best indicator of power growth we have for now, just take it with varying pinches of salt.

For PP the number is perfectly reliable, so that’s what this post is going to look at. Below is just a list of current PP values compared against the ones in the data. I have omitted any Photon Art or Technique whose PP values are the same as before. All listed values are at lv16.

Oh and before the list begins, please remember that as this is data-mined information these numbers may not reflect their values on release.

Swords

  • Rising Edge: 28pp -> 20pp
  • Twister Fall: 25pp -> 20pp
  • Nova Strike: 30pp -> 20pp
  • Ride Slasher: 28pp -> 25pp
  • Stun Concido: 25pp -> 20pp
  • Sonic Arrow: 28pp -> 25pp
  • Cruel Throw: 28pp -> 20pp
  • Guilty Break: 30pp -> 20pp
  • Sacrifice’s Bite: 25pp -> 20pp

Wired Lance

  • Bind Through: 28 -> 20
  • Grapple Charge: 25 -> 20
  • Heavenly Fall: 28 -> 20
  • Kaiser Rise: 25 -> 20

Partizans

  • Rising Flag: 26 -> 15
  • Zenith Throw: 28 -> 15
  • Sacred Skewer: 35 -> 30

Twin Daggers

  • Shoot Polka: 28 -> 20
  • Scar Fugue: 30 -> 20
  • Wild Rhapsody: 26 -> 20
  • Dark Scherzo: 28 -> 20
  • Quick March: 25 -> 20
  • Symphonic Drive: 28 -> 25
  • Orchestra: 30 -> 25

Knuckles

  • Ducking Blow: 28 -> 20
  • Flicker Jab: 26 -> 20
  • Slide Uppercut: 28 -> 20
  • Straight Charge: 28 -> 20
  • Quake Howling: 25 -> 20
  • Surprise Knuckle: 28 -> 20

Double Sabers

  • Tornado Dance: 30 -> 20
  • Scissor Edge: 28 -> 20
  • Rumbling Moon: 30 -> 20
  • Fake Capture: 30 -> 15
  • Surprise Dunk: 25 -> 20
  • Acro Effect: 26 -> 20
  • Deadly Circle: 30 -> 20
  • Chaos Riser: 27 -> 20

Rifles

  • All are precisely the same as they are now.

Launchers

  • Divine Launcher: 40 -> 35
  • Crazy Smash: 25 -> 15

Twin Machineguns

  • Dead Approach: 25 -> 20
  • Satellite Aim: 25 -> 20
  • Elder Rebellion: 40 -> 32
  • Reverse Tap: 28 -> 20

Katanas

  • Tsukimi-sazanka: 28 -> 20
  • Kanran-kikyou: 28 -> 25
  • Sakura Endo: 28 -> 25
  • Hien Tsubaki: 30 -> 25
  • Fudou-kuchinashi: 40 -> 30

Bullet Bows

  • Penetrating Arrow: 38 -> 30
  • Torrential Arrow: 30 -> 25
  • Gravity Point: 32 -> 20
  • Million Storm: 35 -> 30

Techs

  • Nabarta: 34 -> 30
  • Ragrants: 20 -> 30
  • Nagrants: 40 -> 20

The only other thing of note is that they’ve gotten rid of the spike in power at lv11 and lv16 for all Photon Arts and Techniques, like they said they would. The only exception is “JetBootsPA04” which for some reason jumps from 529 to 3413 power from lv15 to 16. Anyway this is a good thing of course, I always hated how some Photon Arts were basically worthless until you happened to find their lv16 disc.

It isn’t too long now before we’ll get to see how all these numbers and changes play out. Episode 3 is due out in a mere 3 days as of this post.