Wednesday Oct 13, 2010
Welcome to the return of the GUARDIANS Express Newsletter! A long-dormant feature — we haven’t seen one since the Winter Mission Carnival — this feature will now be housed here on the blogs, as a way to follow-up on newly released and recent content updates, preview announced events and content, and in general discuss the news and goings on in Phantasy Star Universe. All of this will be edited by your friendly neighborhood GM, namely, me.
There’s good reason to have this feature return here & now. Aside from the fact that I generally enjoy the chance to write about a game I’ve been immersed in for years now, Phantasy Star Universe has had a nice expansion to available content, not to mention the recent addition to Games on Demand. Let’s get grinding!
GUARDIANS Boost Road: Parum and Experience Boost!
The GUARDIANS Boost Road returned recently to the Gurhal System, and is nearing completion. The Boost Road — or GBR — is a drop boost given for running a certain set of missions, in this case Train Rescue, Endrum Remnants, The Dual Sentinel, and Duel in the Ruins (all of which also get a new S3 difficulty rank). This GBR continues for an additional two weeks, until October 29th, but will have an experience boost applied to the missions! This is the first experience boost we’ve had in the game for quite some time — since MAG+ last Febuary. So while the regular GBR may have run its course, those of you looking to level up can hit these missions for a nice boost to the usual experience rates.
Also worth noting: Duel in the Ruins, with an outdoor nighttime setting, is probably one of the most gorgeous missions to play in the game. It’s not a bad one to spend some time in.
New GUARDIANS Advanced Content
Those of you who aren’t as interested in the Boost Road have lots of new GUARDIANS Advanced Content that’s now available!
This allows extensive customization of any maximum level character. In case you’re new to the game or to Advanced Content, it’s a special type of experience earned either once you hit max level or through the conditional “/R” missions available from the Resident Security area in Clyez City, the GUARDIANS Colony.
The full list of newly available customizations is available on the quest update page on the main site. In addition, new items have been added for purchase at the Resident Security Trading Post!
This Is Halloween
One of the joys of PSU’s different lobbies is the seasonal changes to the game’s major cities — different holidays, from Sonic’s Birthday to White Day, get their own seasonal lobbies and now is the time for bouncing pumpkins and some of the most awesome music in all of Phantasy Star Universe. This lobby is available only for a limited time in the GUARDIANS Colony!
Additionally a special Halloween room item is available from stores for a limited time — and if you go hunting for the special Halloween “Rappy Latan” enemies, they might just trick you with a special treat…
Go Tell Alis
One of the perks of being a GM is, of course, having a ready-made high level character with my chosen job type maxed, and some nifty one-of-a-kind weapons to boot. But while this is fun and all, this ready-made awesomeness does keep me from having to level a character myself. Of course I’ve done this, but not since PC/PS2 servers were active: I leveled a human fighter before I was ever a GM, and then later another human Fortefighter and later a CAST Gunmaster. And while we’ve had to bid adieu to the PC/PS2 servers, I haven’t yet started a new character on the Xbox 360 — until now.
Planning a new character is PSU is a project, and picking your race, class, and gender (since even gender affects different resistances and some abilities) is a huge part of the appeal of the game. Of coruse in PSU you are allowed to acquire multiple job types (although you can only have one active at a time), but it’s the planning of a character which makes it fun.
To that end I’ve created a new CAST — what can I say, I heart robots — and named her Alis, a memorial to, of course, the protagonist of the very first Phantasy Star game. Yes, there was also “Alys” in the excellent Phantasy Star IV, but my roots are, in this case, with the original.
Early game PSU is some of my favorite — advancing rapidly in levels, picking up new weapons, gaining new lobbies, and playing the game when it’s at it’s most challenging are all fun reasons to start a new character. And even if you’re a PSU veteran of many years, making a new character is a great way to go back to missions you may not have touched for some time.
It also allows you to hit up story missions which you may not have seen for some time — the game has a incredibly epic & lengthy narrative to it, which is easy to forget if you spend most of your time just hunting rare weapons in the free missions available — but with a huge cast of characters and a lot of different story missions available, it’s a great way to experience the game as you level.
Of course making a new character isn’t any kind of news, but what I want is to use this as a chance to talk about the leveling experience in PSU, the character-crafting process, and highlihgt fun surprises along the way.
Thus, Alis will be an ongoing project — I need to decide on a profession for her (melee fighter? or the CAST speciality of ranged weapons expert?) and plan on taking her through the story missions, visiting lobbies, and helping newer players as they level too. Stay tuned as this and more will be documented in future installments of the GUARDIANS Express!
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