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PostPosted: Thu Jul 8, '10, 7:56 pm 
I guess such a topic must have been discussed here at some point, but with the constant affluence of new members... Besides, it's never a dull subject. PS is the reason we're all here after all.

So how did you first encounter PS? When was it? What did you feel back then? Are you a new player on a journey of discovery or an old veteran on a journey of nostalgia?

My first PS experience was pretty much twenty years ago. I was a teenager in the most unforgiving years of my high school days. It was late in fall... I am an extremely nostalgic person, fall always gets to me. It's quiet and so reflective. I was in terrible pain, the likes only a teenager can feel, I had just been cast out of the life of an impossibly beautiful young lady which I fancied as fiercely as my young heart was capable of. The only thing I had on my mind were her lovely smile, glowing eyes and long, long dark blond hair.

I went to visit a friend who lived nearby to change what was on my mind. I knew he had a Genesis and we played Sonic on a regular basis. I wasn't allowed to have a console. My father didn't fear for my grades but we weren't the richest of folks so he used to tell me "The day you can pay for it yourself is the day I'll allow you to have one." My friend had a new game to show me called Phantasy Star 2, borrowed from one of his friends. You have to understand that it was the first 16-Bit RPG I ever saw. I was completely amazed, it was so much better than Dragon Warrior. My friend was doing the Biosystems Lab, I was completely entranced by the "Advanced" track, so futuristic, so NOT medieval!

He had the bad habit of not letting me play his best games or never show me the endings of any of them. Teenage boys make a habit of bullying thier peers any way they can. Physical, emotional, as long as it worked. I usually had the bad fortune of being the one being bullied as I was very small and shy. (No longer the case, trust me). Anyways, a few months later, he borrowed Phantasy Star 3 and from that point, I knew what I wanted more than anything. Only once did he let me play, one evening where he went out with friends, I was allowed to endlessly prowl Cille's island, grinding Meseta so he could afford Plannar weapons in the first generation. I would not go any further than that. I did not care, I was playing Phantasy Star!!.

The following summer, I went to work on a tobacco field and gathered enough money to buy a Genesis and the two very same cartridges from the friend's friend who did not want them anymore. I played those two games to death in my room on a 12 inches black and white TV. Imagine my face the first time I saw the MotherBrain on a glorious 20 inches color TV.

Then in 1996, as I was finishing college, came PS4. It was good, but never as good as its two predecessors. Then later I managed to get my hands on a SMS and play PS1, which was ok. It was much superior to any NES equivalent of its era AND it was hard, a quality greatly lacking in PS 3 and 4.

Phantasy Star 2 and 3 are holy to me. They helped me get over my broken heart and opened my mind to so much.

Thanks Sega.

I probably enjoyed writing this more that you will reading it but, no matter. How bout you guys?

PostPosted: Thu Jul 8, '10, 8:12 pm 
Those sound like really lovely memories, Aero. ^^

As for me, I discovered the joys of the PS series through the wonders of emulation. I had the Genesis 552 collection on my PC (no longer the case, I'm afraid) and I think it had just about every Genesis game one could imagine. This was back in 2001, so I'm still relatively young compared to most of the veterans here. I was in eighth grade, 13 years old and I was scrolling down the list of possible game I wanted to play, when my eyes alighted upon a particular screenshot.

It was that of Phantasy Star IV.

I read the little description at the bottom of the image, and deciding that this would be a good game to play, I fired up the emulator.

Little did I know it would start my love affair with both manga and JRPGs in general, a love that continues to this day.

I don't remember my very first playthrough very well. What I can vividly recall was seeing Hahn cast Wat for the first time, immediately noticing Alys in the very first cutscene ( she immediately became my favourite character, but I had the nagging suspicion that she was too good to be true... and wouldn't be around for long...) and of course, that scene that made every fan here want to pummel the living daylights out of Zio. When that happened, I switched off the game, and tried to get a grip on myself as I cried myself to sleep. I can also recall shaking with anger when I laid eyes on Zio's sprite for the first time. As for the rest of the game... meh. Can't remember.

I played 3 shortly after ( I actually played the games in reverse order ^^), but I wasn't impressed at all. Nuff said. I only played 2 very recently, and I never played 1 yet.

So, those are my somewhat feeble memories. :D

PostPosted: Thu Jul 8, '10, 8:15 pm 
First time I played an RPG was in fact, Phantasy Star IV. I was over at my auntie's place. She had a Genesis and usually when I was there, it was with my siblings so we'd play two player games. So when I was there one time alone, back in third grade or so, I began trying out the different games that were there. So I ended up trying Urban Strike, Pit fall, Road Rash and Phantasy Star IV.

The second I started playing Phantasy Star IV I was amazed, at that time I didn't care for the story but playing it was incredibly fun. Not to mention the pictures they showed were awesome. When I was done visiting my auntie, Ihad reached level 7 and was in the Tonoe Basement.

The next time I played was a couple months later when I made it to Aiedo at around level 10 and go lost. I never knew about the entrance to the cave so I constantly looked around with out nothing. It wasn't until two years later when my auntie gave me her Genesis that I really started to play the game and read the story. I was truly fascinated by this world. It took me a year before I finally beat the game at around level 35. I remember shaking pretty badly when I beat the game because I only had one person left alive with 7 HP. Thank you Gryz for that epic last hit. I truly found that last battle difficult as I tried to do it countless times and died plenty of times.

If I knew as much as I did now, I bet the game would have been a lot easier. I was always running from battles and never used techs/skills as good as I could.

PostPosted: Thu Jul 8, '10, 8:43 pm 
Aw, I love the way you write, Aero. My story won't be as eloquent.

The year is 1990. I'm 11 years old and I've just come home from school one day (springtime, I believe) to see Mom playing something on the Genesis. This is a rare moment, because Mom never played video games. It was also one I hadn't seen before. She says it's a new game, called Phantasy Star II, and it's so big (as in, memory), that it came with a hintbook. Whoa. It took me exactly two seconds to be completely hooked, and like Aero, I was positively thrilled it was sci-fi.

Mom and Dad ended up not playing the game much, though they originally bought it as more of "sophisticated" game for themselves. I beat the game about a year later, after picking away at it a little at a time. Mother Brain was beyond mind-blowing. The entire family came into the room to watch the battle with Mother Brain and then watch the ending. Speaking of the ending, we were all standing there with our jaws hung open... finally I said, "That's it????????" as the last credit rolled and it went back to the Sega logo. From that point on, all I could think about was getting my hands on PSIII. In the meantime, I rented a Power Base Converter and played a borrowed copy of PSI. Man, I was confused about how different the game was from PSII. I liked it, but the fantasy elements interested me less and the mix of sci-fi/fantasy felt goofy at times. I absolutely loved Alis and Myau, though.

A year later I found a copy of PSIII in a bargain bin at Electronics Boutique. Too good to pass up! Overall the game was fun for me, but since there was no discernible connection to the other Phantasy Star games until close to the end, I gave up hope getting some answers to PSII. I thought the series had gone the way of Final Fantasy. I was happy it did end up being connected to the other games, but ultimately I was disappointed. I liked the worlds of Algol and wanted to play a game featuring them.

Several years later I finally picked up Phantasy Star IV. I'd like to say it was around late Fall of 1996. My brother had just gotten his N64, so I took ownership of the Genesis. I originally wasn't going to play PSIV because of my disappointment with PSIII. However, I glanced through an issue of some gaming magazine (don't remember which) and saw some screen shots and noticed how it looked more like PSII. I found my copy of PSIV either on sale or maybe I bought it used, so again, score for the bargain price. I was so happy the game went back to Algol. The characters were wonderful, it explained what happened in between PSII and PSIV, and the cut scenes were cool. I didn't love it as much as PSII, though, because the battles were slightly more cartoony, Zio wasn't as interesting as Neifirst (he was too out in the open, so no surprise), and I found the macro system confusing. It also felt like a short game. The androids were fabulous, though.

Last edited by Tanith on Thu Jul 8, '10, 8:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.

PostPosted: Thu Jul 8, '10, 9:04 pm 
ALRIGHT!!! I love Nostalgia topic. All of your memories were great read...though my love for PS is not as much emotion as in aero post, I did have a little back story.

Back when I was still a kid who could not read english at all (for those who don't know yet, my native language is french), I received a NES during Christmas when I was 7. At first of course I played the classic Mario Bros, Megaman, Metroid...but rather quickly, I discovered Zelda I then Zelda life began to change a little bit because I was discovering that video game could take place in a very large world, filled with mysteries and discoveries. Back then I was starting to ask my father "Can you translate me this?" because sometimes I couldn't figure what I was doing, but with Zelda, most of the time, I was able to get through without understanding english.

The whole problem came with the arrival of two games. First: Dragon Warrior....quickly was bored with it, and gave up. But what really addicted me to RPG was Final Fantasy. Now this was total liberty!!! Choice of character, item, big world...sure I wasnt able to understand half of what was happening, and during those days, never made it past the second fiend (I was renting the games, and there was only one save slot...meaning I had to restart everytime), but boy was I mind-blowed!!! DUring those times too, my father was about to go crazy from me asking him all the time to translate everything. He then gave me a dictionary english-french and said to me "Do it yourself"...So because of my love of RPG, I learned english faster than in any english class I will have later on.

This was the 8bits era. I knew RPG where the thing for me. Then come the 16 bits one point, every little boy and girl back then had a choice to do. Will you go Genesis with Sega or Super Nintendo???? My parent were only allowing me one console at a time at home, so I had to chose. So I rented both.

With the Genesis, of course I tried, Sonic 1 & 2...It was fun. But then I tried the Super Nintendo with SUper Mario World but even more FINAL FANTASY II (well, we all know it was 4 but anyway). I will not told the story about how I didnt know how to save in FFII back then I was so used at doing it in the Inn), so that I was playing it in one playthrough, but I was rather impressed. So the obvious choice was the SNES of course. This console would continue to feed my RPG need.

But evil Sega did something really really bad. Agressive TV Ads. I don't know if anyone remember the days of Sega do what Nintendon't and their TV ads that were showing the Genesis as the superior console, in a way that stupid little kid like me would fall into this easy trap...but anyway, because of those, I switched side at the last minutes, and took the Genesis.

*insert DOOM music here*

OMG, where were my Final Fantasy games on this console. At first, all I saw in the Genesis were rather sub-par action game...I felt sad, really sad. The first RPG I tried back then was Shining in the Darkness, and boy, even though I love that game today, back then, I was trying to convince myself that it was better than nothing. But I wanted more. So one day, I was at the rental place. And I saw this picture of a guy with a sword, going up in stars leading to some kind of robot shooting laser at guess it, it was Phantasy Star III. I played that game, and while I know that everyone think it's the black sheep of the series, for me, it was something that was finally on par with my memories of Final Fantasy I. The world were kinda vast, I loved the anime style (which I didnt know what it was back then). And the overall atmosphere and something I didnt knew back then. I played that game many times. I also discovered many other RPG, Shining Force I & II which introduced me the Tactical RPG, WarSong (also known as Langriser) and games like Wonder Boy in Monster World. This is also when I tried Phantasy Star II, which I completed without the use of the Visiphone, which was a real pain during my young age...but not understanding every part of the english scenario, part II didnt left me a big impression compared to III.

But during all those time, I was seeing games like Secret of Mana, Illusion of Gaia, Lufia, Breat of Fire and such coming out on the SNES...and even Phantasy Star III couldnt heal my sadness.

Then came 1995...Final Fantasy III (VI) were released not too long ago, I was in pain of not playing it....BUT, like an item of worship with light around it came Phantasy Star IV on the rental stand!!! I can tell you, every week-end, in my tiny little town, it was war between me and my friends knowing which one will rent it first. This game, while now I think I prefer III more, I can say that this is the Phantasy Star I completed the most often in my life. Every week-end I was able to rent it, I was beating it from start to finish, without any break. When Chrono Trigger came out, it didnt hurt me, I was playing PSIV, and nothing could touch it in my heart.

Then came the 32-bits 64-bits era. The Saturn was not a good choice for me back then. So once again my parents asked me to chose between the Nintendo 64 and the Playsation...once again, I made the wrong choice for my RPG need, and chose the N64...because like the Sega Ads back then, the vision of Mario 64 blinded me to the truth. Plus to get the Nintendo 64, I had to sell my Genesis...this was a big hit in my heart, to leave the Phantast Star series behind

Hopefully this was the last Generation I had to make a crucial choice like that. After that I began to work little side job during week-end, got my own money, and purchased back everything I wanted, including a Genesis AND a SNES...When I finally played SNES RPG after all this time, I was really happy...BUT, quickly realized that, with Phantasy Star, I was already having all my RPG need filled without me realizing it. Of course, at that time, I was understanding english at 100% so I rediscovered the 3 Genesis Phantasy Star with brand new eyes, and finally saw Phantasy Star for what it of the most Epic RPG series that ever graced the video game world!!! SNES rpg were great, but nothing could beat Phantasy Star in my heart now.

On a side note, you might have realized that in all this story, I never tried the first Phantasy Star...that Master System was something I never saw in my young my very first experience of the original Phantasy Star was on the GBA Phantasy Star Collection. I was really sad about that, because really, if when I first discovered RPG genre with Dragon Quest and Final Fantasy, I would have also played Phantasy Star, I would have then realized hwo superior this was to those 2, and might not have been as sad during my 16 bits era, because I would have known that Phantasy Star was the superior series.

This was my VERY LONG story, hope you enjoyed it!!!

Last edited by xellos667 on Thu Jul 8, '10, 9:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

PostPosted: Thu Jul 8, '10, 9:17 pm 

I never expected such intense posts!! Those stories are ALL great!!

I love this place <3

PostPosted: Thu Jul 8, '10, 9:22 pm 
Ah, such wonderful stories! We haven't had one of these topics in a while, so it's a great time to revisit the idea. :)

One Christmas, many a year ago, I received as a gift my very first Sega console, a Genesis with Sonic 2. I tried Sonic 2 out for a while, but was not very good at it due to the quick speed. I liked taking my time with games when possible, not trying to always go faster. I was disappointed with the Genesis at first.

Then one day, I was browsing the game selection at the largest of the two video rental stores in my small town. This one was the only with a good selection of Sega games. Most of the NES and SNES games worth renting had already had their turns at my house, so I was looking to explore some of the gaming possibilities my new console could provide.

As I'm looking across the shelf, I see a cover of this guy in a cape, fighting his way up some stairs to a skull-chested robot: Phantasy Star III. It looked interesting. Although it wasn't my first RPG, it was the first of those I had seen for the Genesis. I decided to give it a shot and thoroughly enjoyed the vast world it presented. Little did I know what paths renting that one game would lead me down so many years later...

PostPosted: Thu Jul 8, '10, 10:23 pm 
When I was young, my parents (probably my dad) got a Genesis. Eventually we got PSIV...really the end of the story. I liked it as a kid, then it fell by the wayside until my college years, when I rediscovered it through emulation. Twas my favorite RPG by a longshot for years...until Earthbound entered my life. >_>

Last edited by Wolf Bird on Thu Jul 8, '10, 10:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.

PostPosted: Thu Jul 8, '10, 11:05 pm 
Hah, the sweet paths of evil... xD (sorry Thoul, I couldn't hold this joke XD)

Also, hope you don't mind of writing my experience here as well.
I guess I must be one of the latest bloomers to this series, as I only discovered the Phantasy Star Series through PSO... I think the very first RPG I played in my whole life was Pokémon!!! xD

A friend of mine from my grandparents' town, back in Sonic Adventure 2's time, caught an eye on PSO and quickly infected me and my twin brother, who started playing it non-stop... Also, I gotta say he's the player-type of us two, I'm more of the spectator-type, as I suck playing xD

Then, I caught an eye on the PS2 Generation Games (that's right folks!!! My "Phantasy Star Retro-Eye" only showed up because of their remakes!!! xD) and, since I couldn't play them on PS2, as I didn't have one nor could I buy it (also, the cursed "jap-only" title attached to them), I would browse through the pics and vids I could find, until I decided to check the classics themselves.

I don't remember who played PS1, me or my brother, but since when I played PSG:1 I already had the basic idea of where to go next, it means I had seen it all at least once xD
PS2, unfortunately, only these last few days I decided to check it more in detail, many thanks to Ill-intent's fan-manga (it's quite good and I hope he continues it). I gotta admit that the futuristic setting and the heavier sci-fi and more dramatic course of events (not including the hateful ambiguous ending), pushed me aback from it, but I'll make an effort to check it, so I can say I went through all the games.
PS4, that was the real one I loved of all classics. The PS2 Generation Games wouldn't be like they are nowadays if it weren't for that one game. I dared to play through and through (well, with a little help from cheat codes, as I played the classics all through emulators), and I loved the storyline.

Now, with the PS2 emulator PCSX2 capable of playing almost perfectly the Generation Games, I'm sacrificing a bit of my time between my very first love, Anime, and my Light Novel-kind writing, to play those two games I'm hoping to see in english someday, along with the PS4 Remake, as to discover how the stories are nowadays, and gotta say I like them alot XD

PostPosted: Thu Jul 8, '10, 11:13 pm 
Ah nostalgia. What fun. Let's see then...

Back in 1990 my sister and I got a Master System 2 for christmas. Some time after that in 1991 we were taken to town by my mum and told we could buy 1 game each for it, seeing how all we had at the time was Sonic built into the console. Anyhoo, I picked Alien 3 and my sister took Phantasy Star.

While I was constantly frustrated by Alien 3 (I never completed it until I used an emulated version 2 years ago) my sister was having a merry old time with Phantasy Star and was clearly hooked. While it took me a while to start playing it I was always watching her play when she did, eventually starting my own game.

Anyway, after about a year or so my sister finally managed to get to and kill Lassic. However, when she got to Dark Falz she got beaten down everytime before she had a chance to get into the fight proper and she eventually gave up after a while. I think it wasn't until 1999 that she went back in and gave it another shot. Turned out her strategy was all wrong and with a little work she nailed him. The exact date of her doing this is written in the manual. I'll need to look it up when I get home.

In between that time I had no idea the other Phantasy Star games existed. I never played a lot of video games and maybe only bought 1 a year so it wasn't until the turn of the century that I discovered the other titles and rekindled my love for the series. Truly as far as games go this series is my favourite. It gave me some great memories in terms of video gaming and was probably the first game I ever played that actually had a plot.

Last edited by Xander on Thu Jul 8, '10, 11:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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