Chatpad be damned! You may have seen shots of the Blue Orb Texter device on Joystiq last year. Essentially, you plug your wired control into the Texter, plug the Texter into your Xbox 360, and your controller becomes a text input device ... of sorts. Applying colored labels to your controller, you input combinations of stick presses to produce different letters. If the charts above are any indication, it is exactly as difficult as it sounds. SEGA has taken it upon themselves to create a Phantasy Star Universe branded version of the device. It's the same device, although it has a spiffier label and comes with lots of PSU-related stickers and a code to redeem a free T-shirt. Though it is intended for use in PSU, it will work in any 360 interface that accepts USB keyboard inputs. Given that the 360 Chatpad will give players the same functionality with a simpler interface, we have to ask: why?
If this question does not vex you as it does us, you may purchase the Texter for $39.95. Hit the "read" link to see a video of the Texter in action.
Of course, the game does have a single player mode as well, so it's quite a bit of gaming for not a lot of scratch.
[Via Xbox 360 Rally]
The official Japanese website for the next chapter in the Phantasy Star world called Phantasy Star Universe: Ambitions of Illuminus has just launched with screenshots in hand. Thanks to PSO-World and the power of translation, we learn that they will be planning a public network trial for the game, but don't exactly detail when or how to sign up for it. So, you'll just have to be patient and possibly move to Japan. As it pertains to graphics ... it's nothing amazing, but you didn't expect Unreal Engine 3 quality models anyway, now did you? And for extra credit be more like Godfree and meticuously analyze each screenshot, because you might just learn something new.
[Via Gamertag Radio]
PSO World reports that a recent issue of Famitsu confirms new details regarding the expansion to Phantasy Star Universe. Entitled Phantasy Star Universe: Ambition of Illuminus, the game is set to expand upon the original in many ways. First and foremost, several new weapon types have been revealed, including photon whips. The expansion will also include new weapons from familiar categories (many will be familiar to PSO fans) as well as new Photon Arts and SUV attacks. The game is set to feature new levels, enemies, clothing, and even a casino. Whether or not Ambition of Illuminus will have a single player story mode has yet to be determined. No other new details have been discovered at this time.
Anyone out there play Phantasy Star Universe? Is it time for an expansion?
Good news for those of you already addicted to Phantasy Star Universe (me), the beta has been extended until Saturday, October 21st. Now you have three more days to die and watch your unhelpful teammates hump your corpse. Assuming you can actually connect anyway. Just to be sure, we connected earlier and the beta is definitely still working.
Some of you may remember that the beta was cut short thanks to a delay and yesterday's Live outage. It's nice to see that SEGA is willing to extend the beta in light of these issues. Anybody enjoying the game so far?
The much ballyhooed Phantasy Star Universe open beta is now available on Xbox Live Marketplace. Now you can slay rappies to your heart's content until October 18th. But not on the 17th. We'll let you all know how wonderful/awful it is just as soon as possible. Perhaps an impromptu Xbox 360 Fanboy clan (X360FanClan?) is in order.
Phantasy Star fans rejoice! The open beta of the upcoming Phantasy Star Universe is coming to Live Marketplace this weekend. There is no exact date listed for the beginning of the beta so, start looking for it on Marketplace tomorrow -- or you can feverishly check every five minutes, like me. The download will only be available for two days, so get it while the gettin's good. There is one caveat and a concern, though. The caveat: you must have Xbox Live Gold to participate -- though you'll only need Silver when the retail game ships.
PSU ships on October 24th. Until then, happy hunting.
Update: Contributor vid33nyc1 pointed us to a handy Q&A thread in the PSU forums that cleared up some questions.
- The beta will be available in the US, Europe, and Japan.
- Whatever happens in the beta, stays in the beta. No levels, items, etc. will carry over into the retail version.
" ... Sega sent an e-mail this week that corrected what they had earlier communicated to us about PSU being free online... it's now set to be $9.99 a month."
$9.99 isn't that bad -- certainly better than some MMOs -- but it sure as hell isn't as nice as free. Oh, well. You can still count on seeing at least one of us 360 fanboys on there (i.e. me). Just think of it this way, we have the only version with voice chat. That's worth 10 simoleons, right?
The opening of the official English Phantasy Star Universe website managed to get lost in the shuffle last week, and for that we apologize. As punishment for our tardiness, upper management has released the weasels. Believe me, the weasels ... they are merciless. Putting our freshly lacerated fingers back on the keyboard, we found that the site has lots of info for fans of the series. It's unfortunate that all of the available media on the site (apart from the above shot) more or less completely fail to display the game's lush environments -- a Sonic Team trademark. There is however, a plethora of information about all aspects of the game (except monthly fees or a lack thereof), much more than can be listed here. Some things to look for:
- Weapon customization and crafting
- Each player gets a personal room that also serves as a shop for others
- Each race and their abilities
- Mission system explanation
- Info on new lobbies
- Info on both multiplayer and single player games
- The battle system
- A spiffy, though tiny, video (in English, no less)
- Lots, lots more
So, I was chatting with my new taskmaster and fellow Uno addict, Chris Grant, on Friday. I was informing him that I had experienced a power outage that zapped one of my posts. The outage effectively obliterated the first rendition of this post, if you must know. That's really a shame, as the first draft exuded a perfection that cannot be retold. Had you seen it, there's a good chance you would never have known sadness again.
Anywho, in response to my story, Chris -- bastion of wisdom that he is -- told me I should get a UPS for my computer (no, not PSU, a power supply, silly). This would protect both my valuable computer and my posts. Now, it just so happens that I do own a UPS. It's just not connected to my computer. Read on to sneak a peek at my inner fanboy.
Xboxyde has posted some new scans of Phantasy Star Universe from the latest Famitsu. The scans feature some of the new monsters as well as the new "Partner Machinery" which will replace the MAG system from previous installments. Also featured are some of the new vehicles, including a mountable and adorable
Anybody who knows more kanji than me, feel free to translate.
Hey folks. I'm the new guy, and this is my inaugural post. My inaug-u-post, if you will. Enjoy.
During E3, the fine people of PSO World sat down with Takao Miyoshi, producer of Phantasy Star Universe, and asked him a few questions. The interview covers some of the new features in the game, including race specific special abilities, player controlled vehicles (!), and the new player lobbies. The new lobbies will actually encompass entire cities and can host up to 1,000 players. The vehicles are varied and include tanks, jet skis, and even mountable beasts that breathe fire. When asked about the possibility of cross-platform play (the PC and PS2 servers already support it), Mr. Miyoshi said only, "It is actually something that is not finalized." Not finalized? That means there's hope right?
Whether or not 360 owners will be able to school PC and PS2 players, they can rest easy in the knowledge that voice chat will be 360 exclusive when the game ships this fall.