If you’re an old Sega head you probably played Phantasy Star Online on the Dreamcast, or one of the later ports that showed up on the Gamecube and Xbox. For years, nearly a decade, Phantasy Star Online 2 was our white whale. Then Phil Spencer went and did his thing and suddenly PSO 2 was on the big screen at E3 2019. It was an E3 miracle, a lost game from 2012 that would never see localization was just… here. And now it’s getting a massive facelift as Phantasy Star Online 2 New Genesis. But it isn’t just a facelift. 

PSO 2 New Genesis Guide

For years since it launched in 2012, PSO 2 has seen new updates as “episodes,” bringing new content, story, microtransaction events, the usual. The team at Sega in charge of the localization have a fast-track roadmap, planning to get English-speaking players up to speed by 2021. Turns out, New Genesis is a big motivator for that rush. But it wasn’t clear during the July 23 Xbox Games Showcase what exactly PSO 2 New Genesis is. Is it an update? A remake? Something totally different? The answer is all of the above, sorta.

Related: Phantasy Star Online 2 Class Guide

First and foremost, New Genesis will be a separate client from the original PSO 2. The game will be changed dramatically beyond the visuals, turning the game open world, changing the gameplay systems, story, and character creation suite. The visual upgrade will be coming in some form to the original game as well, increasing its system requirements. But players will be able to take their character and login to either version of the game. Both will exist parallel, and both will remain playable.

Character creation data will be supported between either version, hence the update to the original PSO 2 as well. However since the gameplay is changing, there are items that won’t be functional if you hop over to New Genesis. That includes Skill Rings, furniture, and consumable items. Some currency, namely AC and SG, can be used in both games. But other currencies like FUN and Meseta will not carry over, and neither will character growth. That’s again down to the system changes, so while you can bring your character over, you’ll be starting back at level 1 in New Genesis.

Have you been playing PSO 2 and still shocked it exists in English? Are you excited to start over when New Genesis drops in 2021? Are you still just confused by this announcement? Chat with us about it on Facebook and Twitter!