Phantasy Star Online 2 is ready to start the next phase of testing ahead of its late 2012 release. With the closed beta of the MMO sequel wrapping up, Sega is discussing plans for an open beta test of the game that will begin in June. While recent attempts to bring back the series were halfhearted at best (Phantasy Star 0) to absolutely terrible (Phantasy Star Universe), early data from the closed beta of this return to the light sci-fi action of the Dreamcast originals paints a promising portrait.
Before the open beta kicks off this summer, it will be preceded by a “pre-open beta,” in the last two weeks of June, a smaller test just to make sure that the game’s current infrastructure can accommodate the full open beta.
Producer Satoshi Sakai posted an update on the game’s official website (English details courtesy of Andriasang) with extended details about the closed beta. Around 147,000 players downloaded the game, and 131,000 logged in to play. 228,000 characters have been created in the game so far.
It seems like Japanese players with a penchant for anime are as predictable as ever as more than 71 percent of players chose to play as female characters. Close to 39 percent played as human type characters, and nearly 32 percent played as alien type characters, or Numan if you prefer your fantasy jargon alongside your statistics. The preferred class at this point seems to be Hunters, which was true in part for the original as well.
Players reported 11,000 bugs in the game so far. Between recognition of bugs, and lessons learned about character preferences, Sega is well on its way to getting Phantasy Star Online 2 in fighting shape by this winter.
For those reading this, don’t shy away from trying to participate in the beta. Sega reportedly didn’t block any IP addresses during the closed beta, though rumors contrary to that fact apparently sprung up before the beta ended. Even though the game is entirely in Japanese at this point, Sega has released English patches in past tests. Fair warning for those interested in playing in June’s pre-open beta test. The characters in the eventual full open beta can be carried over into the final game, Sega has said that characters made only in the pre-open beta will be forfeit.
As previously reported, Phantasy Star Online 2 will be out on PC, iOS, Android later this year in Japan with a PlayStation Vita version to follow in 2013.