Phantasy Star Universe

Illuvial

Lonely Driver
Is it worth picking up? I know it has the single player which is the biggest single player effort in PSO history by far, but does it also have the online co-op based missions playable in offline mode? I'm guessing no, but I can't find anything definitive. I know the game got average reviews at launch, but I'm still down to snag it if there is more to its single player than just some basic campaign
 

Nikki

meh...
http://psu-clementine.net/

Shameless plug for this server. They're closed to public to speed up testing right now, but this will be THE SERVER to play on once they get it rolling and ready for public again. So yeah pick it up regardless because there will most likely be (unofficial) online in the future.

To answer your question more directly though, the storymode is neat, but you need a offline.exe (which I think they have on that forum) to play it offline. I don't think it directly has Online missions while offline though no, at least not to my memory. Someone could correct me though. :p
 

Illuvial

Lonely Driver
Also, if you could shed some light on how the game received poor and colder reception upon launch compared to previous games. Did the community love PSU as if it was any other PSO release or was the community more split, and if so, why?
 

Nikki

meh...
There was a pretty mixed reception if anything.

A lot of people didn't like Crafting boards (including myself) replacing a lot of rare drops. Instead of just hunting and getting the rare item, tekking it, and playing with it. You had to hunt down a Board, find the materials for it, and craft it in your partner machine that you also have to raise and grind to better it. Then you have to hope to god the craft succeeds because it has a chance to fail wasting your materials if I remember right.

The Weapon Grinding system also got completely butchered and has a chance to fail, the tradeoff iirc tho is that grinding actually matters greatly to damage output in PSU.

It's a kind of mixed bag, for a lot of people the combat is much better, the planet travelling was cool, the clothing was really neat, and PA were Really fun to use compared to PSO's normal 3 hit system. The tradeoff of rare weapons being boards, and grinding to grind so you can get more grind to grind while grinding just made it a complete pain in the ass to play for a lot of people. It can be just plain ol annoying to deal with.

I'm hoping to god that Clementine does away with some of the stupidity of PSU's crafting system.
 

EvilMag

Member
Considering JP did away with the crafting board sometime during its life cycle I'm sure Clementine. They're also looking to rehaul the grinding system. depends if the community would just take their fucking rose tinted glasses off.
 

Nikki

meh...
Yeah I read that they're considering reworking grinds. Thats also probably why I played JP longer than US, besides the content being behind lol.
 

conenubi701

קרטל אל
Is it worth picking up for the single player mode? Yes.

No you wont be able to play "offline co op".
Also, if you could shed some light on how the game received poor and colder reception upon launch compared to previous games. Did the community love PSU as if it was any other PSO release or was the community more split, and if so, why?
It's best not to go into PSU online (Clementine whenever it comes up) with the idea that it's going to be PSO.

Personally, I liked it for a short time.

I didn't own a 360 when PSU released since i was taking a gaming break during my time in college, but i did watch my friend play it a lot whenever we used to chill together back in 2006-2008. She loved the game and was also a PSO vet from the Dreamcast days. I ended up getting a 360 around 2009/2010 and got into PSU in its last 2 years, so my experience isn't your typical "day one" player's experience.


I think the mechanics were far more engaging than PSO and it felt like a faster/better paced beat em' up game than PSO. I ended up losing interest because there was no pvp mode and it was the same thing over and over after i had gotten a ton of end game gear with not much work needed (heh). Pretty much how i view Normal mode PSO nowadays, it's too casual for someone like me. The most fun is had when gaming sessions are held to 60 minutes in PSO.

Unless it's Battle Mode, where I can pull all nighters and lose track of time really easily since it can turn into a mentally engrossing game when played against evenly skilled humans. Lol
 

CTB

JK hate paused, busy!
I'd consider Phantasy Star Portable as more of a middle ground of PSU and PSO. It's pretty good in it's own ways.

And getting the best gear in PSU (not end game necessarily, talking 10/10 max attribute and best of class) took a hell of a lot longer and was very RNG. Getting said gear was very rinse and repeat (nevermind waiting on crafting lol), like Vex said, and then you have PA leveling if you aren't a HU. Actually I always thought PA leveling was boring even as a HU but then I made a RA and lol

One thing that always sort of sucked on 360 (skipped PC version because lolhax as usual) was the terrible optimization. So when Clementine gets truly up and running *crosses fingers* I'm looking forward to having FOs without suffering
 

Illuvial

Lonely Driver
Yeah, when it comes to the Portable games I've been waiting on the English patch for PSP2i to launch (they're still updating the forum thread and working on it). In the meantime I may just boot up PSP1 since PSP2i is just PSP2 with extra stuff but I dunno right now.

As for PSU... I dunno, the crafting system definitely seems annoying since it replaced something that was simpler instead of being an addition, but other than crafting, things like grinding don't seem like all that much of an issue. Judging from gameplay it looks fairly similar. Maybe its one of those "You have to play it" kinda things for me to truly understand why it doesn't compare

On the topic of Portable 1 & 2 though. I've heard that PSP1 is literally just PSU but with a better single player story and it comes with PSU's expansion. Does that mean that the PSU Clementine server will just be the PSP1 experience but with the MMO aspects PSO is known for? If that's the case, I may as well ignore PSP1 and just wait for Clementine
 
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Calamity

Member
I've been following clementine here and there and it seems they are having to recode the bosses themselves . It may be a lengthy wait
 

CTB

JK hate paused, busy!
I'm really not even sure why they had the testing open publicly; they've pretty much always had a fuckton of work ahead of them. The bosses might not ever work properly which (_really_) sucks but it can't be helped.
 

phantasystarved

worse than a Humar
I have retail copies of PSU + the expansion on PC, tried to play it but the silly GameGuard thing won't update and so the game won't start, even for offline play. Is there a workaround for this? Thanks in advance!
 

Sodaboy

Administrator
Staff member
I'm really not even sure why they had the testing open publicly; they've pretty much always had a fuckton of work ahead of them. The bosses might not ever work properly which (_really_) sucks but it can't be helped.
You'd have to imagine the AI for a number of the bosses should already be located in the code, since boss AI works offline without a server.

Also, for missing packets and/or data, they probably could just sniff/log ADHOC packets from the portable versions of the game which can still be played online (even through the PPSSPP emulator). I'd imagine the portable versions of the game have similar packet structure compared to the console and PC ones. After all, the packet structure for PSO didn't change so much from Dreamcast to Blue Burst. Only the layout changed slightly and the encryption type. I'd imagine the same goes if they compared PSP2/i packets to PSU/AoTI.

A little more reverse engineering can probably get them the exact AI information for all the bosses without having to guess how the monsters work.
 

SheepDog

A weapon to fight for pioneer 2...
Phantasy Star Portable is considered PSU right?
Those were fun, so play those if you have yet to

Is there any way i could play/run those on a laptop? sold my psp some time ago and man did i love my human vanguard in a trenchcoat.
 

Illuvial

Lonely Driver
Is there any way i could play/run those on a laptop? sold my psp some time ago and man did i love my human vanguard in a trenchcoat.
PPSSPP is a pretty solid emulator, doesn't take too much to run it so hopefully you won't have many issues.

On the topic of Portable, I'm actually kinda curious as to the Pro-C firmware for PSP. Basically from what I've read it allows you to play ad-hoc games online in an infrastructure kind of way, which would be ideal for PSP2. Could be cool to setup with some people! I gotta look more into it, but if I figure it out and get it to run solidly I'll probably try getting people from various PSO forums to start using it, and hopefully build some kind of 30-50 player sized community around it. With Portable 2 Infinity getting its localization patch, I think people would definitely come back and be willing to use the firmware to hop online and play that version at the very least
 

CTB

JK hate paused, busy!
I haven't checked in a while but last time I did, Phantasy portable was one of the very few games that had big issues with PPSSPP.

I trashed my PSP the other day trying to replace the scratched up screen* so my hopes of playing PSP2i are probably done until Vita is fully opened up (which is getting there...)


*FUCK YOU SONY. Tiny ass stripped screws are impossible to deal with.


You'd have to imagine the AI for a number of the bosses should already be located in the code, since boss AI works offline without a server.

Also, for missing packets and/or data, they probably could just sniff/log ADHOC packets from the portable versions of the game which can still be played online (even through the PPSSPP emulator). I'd imagine the portable versions of the game have similar packet structure compared to the console and PC ones. After all, the packet structure for PSO didn't change so much from Dreamcast to Blue Burst. Only the layout changed slightly and the encryption type. I'd imagine the same goes if they compared PSP2/i packets to PSU/AoTI.

A little more reverse engineering can probably get them the exact AI information for all the bosses without having to guess how the monsters work.
if I knew any of these guys personally I would probably point them to you but that's just what they say on their forums. I hope you're right cuz I hate playing PSU solo so offline is meh to me...:(
 

Calamity

Member
I tried lol

Tony said:
Calamity said:
I mostly lurk, but clementine was a discussion on ephinea and this was posted about missing information and the problem with the bosses . It may not be helpful and may have already been thought of but I jus thought I'd leave it here

"You'd have to imagine the AI for a number of the bosses should already be located in the code, since boss AI works offline without a server.

Also, for missing packets and/or data, they probably could just sniff/log ADHOC packets from the portable versions of the game which can still be played online (even through the PPSSPP emulator). I'd imagine the portable versions of the game have similar packet structure compared to the console and PC ones. After all, the packet structure for PSO didn't change so much from Dreamcast to Blue Burst. Only the layout changed slightly and the encryption type. I'd imagine the same goes if they compared PSP2/i packets to PSU/AoTI.

A little more reverse engineering can probably get them the exact AI information for all the bosses without having to guess how the monsters work."
While in theory, that's all great, the reality is, none of it is helpful.
The AI would be far too difficult to study through assembly, and would be easier to simply reconstruct from what we know. Offline also doesn't contain all of the data online did, and the parts that both had often were different.

Each version of the PC PSU had different packet structures, never mind the psp version. While again, theoretically this may give us small bits of information, it wouldn't be worth the time. There are ways we could use the PC client to look for packet structure if we really needed to. That and, not many packets are a problem for us right now. PSO is a different story. The game's netcode was extremely small, and most work was done clientside. The PSP games not running on a pure server system is enough difference for me to make a safe assumption that the network communications would look nothing like PSU.

This stuff isn't really a matter of "We don't have any way of obtaining the information we need" but rather a case of "We can obtain the information,or reconstruct it, it will just take us some time". We're in no way stuck, or barred from making progress. It's a time consuming process to rebuild these systems properly.

We appreciate you bringing these ideas forward! Thanks for keeping us in mind. Don't worry, we're making progress on this stuff.
 

Calamity

Member
Marmalade said:
To add to Tony's post slightly, the only major problem we've run into is sync errors, but this is mostly down to the fact that portals were kind of a hack to get working, and the acknowledgement packets for boss actions were only checked against 1 client at the time (The block host). While it did provide a somewhat stable battle it would ultimately find its way out of sync at some point due to latency or frame drops on one client.

I've wised up to this a lot more now so cutscene sync and action sync is checked against all clients, so boss syncing should be a lot better now (It seems to be). That does unfortunately mean that Mr. 15 Frames over there will slow down your boss fight.

As far as AI is concerned I think we're good and sorted for the time being! but who knows?
We can pinch it from the offline game but it will definitely take some time to figure out. Until then some convincing botch-AI can tide everyone over. Fortunately, all bosses of a specific type seem to use the same packet structure and action set; now that De Ragan is mostly functional it has pretty much set Zoal Goug, Alterazgohg, and De Ragnus in motion.

Anyway, thanks for taking the time to share this with us, and thanks Soda for giving his insight!
 
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