Phantasy Star

Video Description

King LaShiec (Lassic) has become corrupted by a religion that promises immortality. It's up to Alisa (Alis) and her team to put a stop to his evil dictatorship.


My first Phantasy Star game was actually Phantasy Star Online Episode III: C.A.R.D. Revolution. Not long after, I played the original Phantasy Star Online. The original non-online games were included in a few collections, but I never played them since they seemed so old. But, I wanted to go back to see where it all began.

I played a mod by SMS Power! which uses the Japanese version of the game, which had an enhanced sound chip and had better music. It translates the Japanese version to English, with sound test and chip selection, different fonts, more save slots, and even cheats, among other things. I would’ve also have loved to try out the Switch version of the game which adds a map for the dungeons since the original has none.

The game was completely remade and released in Japan for the PS2 titled, “Phantasy Star Generation 1.” It was not well received as it changed many of the things that made the original unique.

This game was played using the Master System emulator Genesis Plus GX, in RetroArch.

My Rating:

Story

The game takes place in the year Space Century 342 in the three planet Algol solar system in the Andromeda galaxy. These planets include, Palma (dense forest, lakes, rivers, open areas, fully developed), Motavia (just starting to be colonized, mostly deserts), and Dezoris (ice and snow, completely dark for ten days during eclipses).

Life was good under the rule of King LaShiec (Lassic). However, he became corrupt by a religion from another galaxy that promised immortality. He began ruling over the people, taxing them, shutting down businesses, all while monsters started attacking.

Some individuals began to go against LaShiec’s rule, one being Nero who was killed by the Robotcops. Right before his death, he passed his sword and quest to his sister, Alisa (Alis) and told her to find Tylon (Odin). Alisa set out to avenge her brother’s death.

She recruits a few party members, such as a talking animal named Myau, who is a companion to Tylon. However, Tylon was stoned by Medusa and only Myau can free him. They both head into Medusa’s cave to save him, recruiting another member. They then visit the governor of Motavia who is in support of their ambition to take on LaShiec, telling them to recruit another party member, Lutz (Noah). However, before the party leaves the governor’s building, they have a nightmare of something evil. They then set out to find Lutz and recruit him.

Lutz tells the group about Dr. Luveno who is held up in a prison. They set him free and he agrees to build them a spaceship. With this ship, the group travels to different planets, getting stronger equipment made of Laconia to defeat LeShiec. They also discover that LaSheic resides in a tower in the sky, so they also find Laerma berries. These berries can transform Musk cats, which is what Myau is.

The group uses the berries to have Myau transform into a flying cat to reach LaShiec’s air castle fortress, defeating him and saving the Algol solar system. They report back to the governor of Motavia, except he’s missing. In his place is an evil force known as Dark Force (Dark Falz).

After their difficult battle with Dark Force, the governor said he doesn’t know what came over him, that he was controlled by a dark force. He then admits that Alisa’s father was Aures Landale, the king of Algol. She inherits the crown and becomes the queen of Algol. Peace returned to the land.

Gameplay

This is a RPG adventure game where you explore various towns and go into different caves / dungeons. A true dungeon crawler…literally. The dungeons will be in first person, without a map, and be filled with enemies, treasure chests, and traps, such as pitfalls that drops you down a floor, and the chests themselves which will explode or shoot an arrow at your party. For the time it was really impressive, but also extremely difficult to navigate since the later dungeons become so convoluted that it becomes hard to navigate. Fortunately the Switch version has a map if you wish to use it. Additionally, most dungeons are dark and require a flare to see.

The encounter rate in the game is pretty insane, even with half encounter rate. It’s almost like every other step there is a battle. Battles are also done from first person and it can be a bit disorienting since you cannot see your characters, only the enemies. What appears like one enemy could actually be two or more, even up to eight. It’s also impossible to tell which one you’re going to hit since it’s completely random. And it’s the same when they hit you since the only way you can tell is if you look at your health. During battle you can do standard attacks, or use magic. Some enemies have weaknesses to various spells, so it’s important to remember which ones do more damage to enemies.

Late in the game, you can purchase vehicles to traverse the land. These vehicles include the LandMaster (to traverse on land and drive over Ant Lions), a FlowMover (to travel on water), and an IceDecker (to break through the ice on Dezoris. You will need a lot of money to purchase some of the best equipment and vehicles in the game. End game equipment, however, can be found in the last few dungeons in the game, if you’re brave enough to venture into a huge maze full of traps and pitfalls.

Graphics

The style is colorful and really good looking. Even though the dungeons are basically just one color (sometimes green, blue, red, or gold), they’re still pretty cool. For the time, going into first person in the dungeons was a really neat concept. It’s a bit disorienting since everything looks the same. There is also a cramped feeling when being in the dungeon.

Sound / Music

The enhanced FM audio of the Japanese version sounds amazing. The tracks are memorable and catchy. However, I’m not a fan of the original audio in the game. Fortunately the mod, and Switch version allow you to change to the FM audio.

Albums

Game Info

Developer: Sega
Publisher: Sega
Release Date: December 20, 1987
Published: (updated: )
Ongoing

AdventureRPG

About the Author

Asphodel Gaming
Asphodel Gaming
I am a streamer and game reviewer that enjoys older games (PS1, PS2, PSP, Genesis, Dreamcast, Game Boy, N64, GameCube, and more), and indie games.
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