Sega’s Long Silence On Missing Game Disrespects Their Biggest Fans

Sega’s Long Silence On Missing Game Disrespects Their Biggest Fans

In July of 2012, Sega announced plans to bring the popular multiplayer RPG Phantasy Star Online 2 to the west in “early 2013.” But that still hasn’t happened, much to fans’ consternation — and Sega won’t explain a thing.

In the world of gaming, it’s common to see big companies staying quiet about their products until the marketing schedule dictates that it’s OK to talk, but it’s not often we see a company announce something, promote it, and then never talk about it again.

Yet any attempts to ask Sega what’s up with the game are just met by the same answer: “The game is delayed.” In March of 2013, that was their answer. In July of 2013, that was their answer. Three months into 2014? Here’s part of the email conversation I had with a Sega representative last week:

Sega: Regarding the below, nothing has changed. The game is still delayed and we will update everyone as soon as we know more.

Schreier: Surely at this point it’s more than just a simple delay, no? I know more than a few readers have been waiting patiently for the game to come here, and they expected the release window to be “early 2013” – you guys really can’t help clarify things for them?

Sega: The game is delayed and we will share more info as soon as we know more.

Adding further insult for those who have been waiting, Sega will soon release Phantasy Star Online 2 in Southeast Asia. In English. Fans aren’t psyched about this.

While Sega isn’t the only company that has announced a game and then stayed quiet about it for years — Rockstar’s Agent and Sony’s The Last Guardian are just two examples of video games gone MIA — this is an unusual case. This isn’t a half-baked idea or an ambitious game stuck in development hell; Phantasy Star Online 2 is already complete. It’s been out in Japan for two years. Millions of people have played it.

So maybe Sega plans to quietly shelve the game here. Maybe they’re not saying anything because they have decided that it was a mistake to announce a western release, and they’re hoping this whole thing will just go away. (They should probably start by taking down the US website.)

Or maybe it really is delayed, and it will come out eventually, in which case Sega owes it to fans — many of whom have held off on playing the Japanese version of PSO2 because they thought it was coming here — to explain what’s going on. Two years after the announcement, Phantasy Star Online fans deserve more than “The game is delayed.”


  • You can download the Japanese version and play, and there are English patches floating around. It’s not the same as actually releasing and supporting the game in western markets though.

    Which is a shame. It’s great fun, and supports both casual play and some hard core grinding (Much like PSO before it). The character customisation is phenomenal. It’s bright and colorful. The soundtrack is utterly fantastic.

    I know it’s never gonna dethrone WoW. The game play and style isn’t going to appeal to everyone. But you’ve already released it for free, Sega. The game is complete. Why the hell wouldn’t you release it worldwide? You don’t even have to do any sort of physical release (Though I would buy a massive collectors edition if one was released).

    Just let me say goodbye to Azeroth. Lilly and I have Rappy’s to hunt.

  • I played when it was in beta, and for a while after, even though I couldn’t read or understand what was going on it was the most pleasant experience I’ve had in an MMO ever, probably the only positive experience I’ve had with them.
    Last I checked, the english patches cover pretty much everything in the game so the language is hardly there anymore.

  • I seriously think PSO2 is going to end up being a massive lost opportunity for Sega in the long run, back when it was announced excitement for the title was palpable, now over a year past it’s initial release date, not only have we not heard a single word from Sega on the reasons behind the emphatic delay, but they are about to release a version of the title both they and we know that with a minute amount of effort would be able to run on western servers, yet we’re given nothing.

    Add to that the fact that Elder Scrolls Online releases in a few days, and a literal plethora of MMO’s titles more than happy to fill the void PSO2 has left both having been released or on the verge of it, I don’t think the game will ever reach the level of success it could have.

    But maybe Sega don’t care, in the 2 years it has been since Sega announced PSO2 coming west, they have announced 2 more titles in the franchise, a handheld counterpart to PSO2 for the PSVita, and a standalone title for the Vita called Phantasy Star Nova, neither title will ever likely see the light of day outside the Asia region, it a sad time to be a western fan of the franchise.

    • *golf clap*

      How about “quick snarky remark to feel superior w/o thinking of context”?

  • I still play on the Jp servers (ship 10! if anyone is playing! :D) but IMHO…

    PSO2 as it stand is really just wasted potential now. Aside from the obvious few dedicated fans it’s going to be a practical up hill climb from here on out. Most people would have moved on to other MMO’s by the time this comes out. Or would have jumped to the SEA servers. The more dedicated one’s would have too much invested in the Jp server to consider jumping. And the fiddly stuff and having to play in a foreign server would have turned off the more casual players after trying it on the Jp servers…

    That’s a lot of steam gone… specially w/ the massive amount of content already available from the Jp version.

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