For the first time in history, a video game breaks all limitations of language and time to unite gamers on a global scale! Sega Europe, today announced the release of Phantasy Star Online for the 128-bit, Internet-ready Sega Dreamcast video game console. This multiplayer RPG allows thousands of players to interact, form teams and embark on mystical and monster-filled missions in real-time. Using a language converter and a special Internet clock, Phantasy Star Online delivers a world that is easy to navigate while interacting with friends from around the world. Created by world-renowned developer Yuji Naka, Phantasy Star Online expands on the ever-popular Phantasy Star franchise by sculpting the universe into a revolutionary online gaming experience.
Set in the future and utilizing elements of the legendary Phantasy Star series, Phantasy Star Online begins with a scout crew descending from space to investigate an explosion on the planet Ragol. By assuming the role of a fully customizable character ? including profession, race and appearance - players must unite in packs of four to solve the mystery of what triggered the explosion and what happened to the previous crew who had already arrived on the planet. This game can be played offline, online or both, with computer generated mission companions if necessary.
Phantasy Star Online completely eliminates language barriers by using a universal translation system. This makes it possible for gamers from all over the world to play together seamlessly. Players choose from hundreds of pre-set phrases and sentences, which are then instantly translated into Japanese, English, Spanish, French, or German. Players can also communicate through the use of "Hot Keys," which are commonly used phrases or words pre-set on either the keyboard or controller.
Phantasy Star Online runs on a universal time system that makes it easy for gamers to meet online. Using the "beat" time, created by Swatch, gamers will have no problem meeting for gameplay regardless of time zones or geographical borders. Beats eliminate time zones and geographical borders by dividing up the virtual and real day into 1000 "beats."
"Phantasy Star Online is bringing the first truly global gaming experience to console players around the world," said Mark Fisher, Product Manager, Sega Europe. "Breaking the barriers of language and time, and supporting thousands of players at a time, Phantasy Star Online delivers unlimited gaming possibilities."
The Phantasy Star series is one of the most successful RPG franchises ever, with a lineage dating back to 1987 when it was released in Japan for the Sega Master System. Phantasy Star, having set the standard for RPGs, has enjoyed tremendous growth from the 8-bit system to the present 128-bit online platform with installments including Phantasy Star I-IV, Phantasy Star Adventure, Phantasy Star Gaiden and the Phantasy Star Collection.
Phantasy Star Online supports the Dreamcast Keyboard, and is currently available at http://www.sega.com/ and at retailers nationwide for the suggested price of £39.99.