The English version of Phantasy Star Online 2 hasn’t even been released yet, but the game is already a bona-fide hit in Japan. In their most recent earnings report, Sega revealed that the free-to-play sequel to the Dreamcast cult classic (and one of my favorite games ever,) has become one of the company’s most profitable titles in recent years, and Sega is hoping to capitalize on that success with two new PSO2 products: PSO2: Episode 2, a brand new, substantial expansion for the PC version of the game, and PSO2:ES, an Android app that will apparently let you continue to build up your PSO2 character, even when you’re away from your PC or Vita.
Phantasy Star Online 2: Episode 2 is a major content update that’s due to be released this Summer. Episode 2 will add two new weapon classes (katanas and “bullet bows,” which look like they may function similarly to the “shot” weapon class for the original PSO,) new stages, and new gear and equipment for your character, including costumes from Phantasy Star Universe. Following Episode 2’s release, Sega will continue adding new content into PSO2 this Fall, including a new, harder difficulty for high level characters and even more new stages.
While Episode 2 will be a free download (just like the rest of PSO2,) a special physical release will be available in Japan, which will include special bonus items and 30 days access to the game’s premium content. PSO2 originally launched in Japan almost a full year ago, and while Sega of America has confirmed that they’re working on an English version, they have yet to announce a firm launch date for America. I’m definitely going to pester any Sega reps I see at E3 about the game, so check back later this week for some hopefully good news about PSO2’s English release.
Sega of Japan also announced Phantasy Star Online 2: ES, a special Android app that syncs up to your PSO2 account and lets you play as your character on your phone. This isn’t an Android port of the “real” PSO2 game however: it looks like the gameplay in ES is different from PSO2 (it looks like it’s menu based rather than having the real-time action of the main game,) but it sounds like playing ES will unlock bonuses for your character in PSO2. Like Episode 2, ES is scheduled to be released in Japan sometime this Summer.