Review by Kupopo
"This Game Rules!"
I'd honestly never heard of the Phantasy Star series until my parents accidentally bought me a Phantasy Star Online players guide, even though I don't have a Dreamcast. But now I'm glad they made that little mistake, because it introduced to this game.
Gameplay - The controls are simple and easy to master- typical RPG controls, really. The battles have a lot more to them than just hitting and using magic, and there are side events, Hunter's Guild Quests, that a really fun and sometimes pretty challenging.
Story - The story is really cool, and successfully manages to involve all the characters. As opposed to some RPGs where characters are more like bystanders, these guys set the plot in motion. Because of the story, you're constantly gaining and losing party members, like in Final Fantasy 4, and I think this keeps the team roster interesting. I can't reveal too much, but the ending satisfyingly wraps up not only this game, but the entire series.
Characters - In important RPG factor, these characters are great. All have some use in battle, and, more importantly, they're all interesting. The four main heroes are of course the most interesting in the game, but the supporting characters you have temporarily are all great too. Interestingly, the characters of Rika, Wren, and Rune are eerily similar to beloved characters from the previous three games, which may sound like a lazy rip-off, but is actually quite nostalgic.
Audio/Video - The music is good but not great and the sounds effects in battle are all kind of similar. The graphics, though, are great. Like Final Fantasy 6, this game uses its own console's full potential in the impressive visuals department. The game has comic book-style cutscenes, which is a really cool concept topped by good artwork.
Replayability - The game's great, the battles are actually really fun, and the plot and characters (as mentioned above) are great, ensuring that you'll not only play the game for long periods at a time, but should keep coming back. The Hunter's Guild adds a lot of extra replay value, at least for me.
To buy or to rent? - This is a toughie... I would say ''rent'' to make sure you like it, but that's next to impossible. I would say ''borrow from a friend'' but that's just as hard. Your only option is to buy, but it'll be worth it.
This game is hard to come by nowadays, and it may cost you a pretty penny, but it's worth it. This game is still one of the best RPG's around.
Reviewer's Rating: 5.0 - Flawless
Originally Posted: 06/22/01, Updated 06/22/01
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