Saturday, May 31, 2008

Japan: PSU Calendar Wallpaper for June



The June calendar went up recently. You can find it in various resolutions at the link below.

PSU Calendar

MAG: Leaderboard Disqualifications

A few days ago, Sonic Team removed several users from the kill and time attack leaderboards. Many of these users (or their teammates) admitted to foul play for the times they achieved on the time attack board (before they were removed even). I'm going to assume that getting dropped from the time attack board led the same users to also be kicked off the kill board. As far as I know, bans have yet to be handed out, but could be in the future.

JP 360 Notice
MAG Kill Board
MAG TA Board

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

General: No Maintenance for May 30th

According to the JP homepage, the 360 won't have maintenance this week. This usually applies to PC/PS2, but that hasn't been confirmed yet.

Some signs are pointing towards next week for a sizeable update. Nothing has been made official yet though.

Update: Confirmed for PC/PS2 servers as well. chillaura also mentions that there will be more information on Tuesday about next week's update. So far, the much anticipated PA exp adjustments have been mentioned as being planned for this one.

Official Announcement
Discussion Topic
JP 360 No Maintenance

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Japan: No PC/PS2 Maintenance for May 29th

There won't be a maintenance period this week for the JP PC/PS2 servers. Also appearing as a news item for this week is the usual GM event report. This one features the Dengeki Girls and their experiences with the last major event.

Update: A new post is mentioning possible game connection issues during a short (half hour) time span for a bit of nonstandard maintenance.

JP No Maintenance
Dengeki Girls Report
JP Possible Downtime

Sunday, May 25, 2008

MAG: Temporary End Notes

As mentioned before, MAG should be returning sometime in late June. For now, I'm going to leave the stuff from the side bar here.



MAG Live Support
Official MAG Homepage
MAG at PSUPedia
Kamica's MAG Guide
MAG Extension Information
More MAG Extension Information
MAG Extension Delayed

Additionally, there have been various posts about the current end of MAG. The first mentions a few points about how the needles have been divided up. The next has links to a few videos from the team that is considered by many to have the lowest legitimate time on the TA rankings. The last one is just a video of what the most populated PC/PS2 lobby was like in the minutes before the maintenance to take down MAG.

Spread Needle / G Distribution
Time Attack Videos
Crazy Spam

General: New Sega Site and Support Section

Sega has recently updated their western (US and European) homepages. Most of the bugs that I've noticed seem to have been worked out and they are still making some improvements and additions. There is a lot of older data missing, but assuredly they are working on continuing to add more of it as time goes on.

As a part of this new site, they also have a new support section. There are even options for submitting PSU related tickets specifically. They have yet to update the PSU homepage to reflect this, but I believe everything (even abusive behavior forms) should now go through this help site.

Update: chillaura has made a post about the new support system. His words:

The http://www.phantasystaruniverse.com/support_contact.php page has been updated to direct users to the new SEGA Support Center at http://help.sega.com./ This site will require a SEGA PASS registration. Although SEGA PASS will be tied to a monthly newsletter with special SEGA features and offers, you can register to use the support page without subscribing to any mailing list.

PSU issues can be submitted to three different support departments at SEGA:

For PC installation or network issues on any platform submit your ticket to the "General Tech Support" department.

For PSU account and billing issues send your ticket to the "PSU Account/Billing Support" department.

For game play questions, to report bugs, or to submit an abusive behavior report submit your ticket to the "PSU In-Game Support" department (the Game Masters).

We will no longer accept abusive behavior reports without a valid email address registered with SEGA PASS. This is due to a large amount of spam as well as incomplete and false reports we received through the old form and will insure that we can reply to every report we receive through the new site.
The new system seems very good in comparison to the older ones.

Sega Homepage
Sega Support
Announcement Thread
PSU Support Instructions

Community: Episode One on YouTube Completed

Amaury25 has recently finished uploading the rest of the first story episode onto YouTube. There was a bit of a break, but he came back and finished the rest of it off in a few days. I figured I'd give a notification for anyone wondering when it would be done since it took a bit longer than I estimated.

I'll probably keep this on the side bar for at least awhile. It's pretty useful for anyone that didn't play the original's story mode. Considering AotI starts with Episode 2, they might not even have it.

The link below has a full list of all the videos that were taken. They're in order and divided up by chapter.

Discussion Thread

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Community: PSO-World Updates

After much preparation and some extensive downtime, PSOW has updated their forums to the vBulletin system. Some patch notes can be found at the link below. However, pretty much everything from the old forums has been carried over into the new system. They plan to use the coming weeks to make various tweaks and improvements.

If I read correctly, they seem to imply that the forums are just the first phase. The site itself might see some improvements too. Some users have already mentioned that the forums seem out of place due to the clash of designs.

PSOW Forum Update Thread

Friday, May 23, 2008

General: Update for May 23rd

MAG is gone after this update and so is Gifts from Beyond. As mentioned before, these are planned to return sometime next month.

The spring lobbies have been taken down as well. The mysterious Rappy Paskas have also been removed and people are once again getting Cati / Skill PP Saves from the standard version. The game is now in a fairly normal state.

Update: It would seem that 'Jenkel Arms CV' is missing from the shops on the Guardians Colony and Parum. I was able to get a few confirmations that it is missing on the 360 side. Sources for the PC version say it isn't missing from their side.

Update: The rare mission discovery method was in fact not changed this past maintenance, but will still be arriving sometime in the future.

JP 360 Maintenance End
Gifts from Beyond Missing
Jenkel Arms CV Missing from 360

Thursday, May 22, 2008

MAG: Extension Postponed

I'm sorry to say that I've just found out that the 2 week MAG extension has been postponed. I'll have more on the situation as it develops.

Update after maintenance: While it's true that Gifts from Beyond is gone, it will be returning for sure when MAG does. It may even be back sooner than that.

Update: The announcement thread has been updated. They are planning for the extension to happen in late June. All of the rewards will arrive after this time. Fortunately, they've mentioned that all of this won't affect the content updates for June.

Announcement Thread
Discussion Thread
Gifts from Beyond Missing

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

MAG: Tenth Milestone Hit



Seems we've managed to just hit the next milestone! There are only two left and with the extension they should be quite easy.

EN MAG Page

Xbox 360: UPPA Squares on May 25th

Silver19 and the UPPA will be holding an event this Sunday:

Date: May 25th, 2008
Time: 5 PM PDT, 7 PM CDT, 8 PM EDT, 2 AM UTC
Place: Linear Line Transfer Terminal on Universe 10
Requirements: None
Prizes: TBA

Sounds to me like 'Samurai Squares'. Could just be the name though. Check the thread for more details and contact a UPPA member if you need to know more.

Discussion Thread

Monday, May 19, 2008

Japan: Looking Towards the Future 3

JP has provided a summary of some of the updates upcoming on their servers until September. May 22nd already has a detailed list of updates posted, so I've skipped that portion.

June:

- Event preceding the upcoming Episode 3 ending
- Reissue of certain Dengeki missions
- *notes below*
- *notes below*
- Wedding lobby (early June)
- Sonic lobby (late June)

July through September:

- Phantasy Star Portable is released (July 31st)
- The PSP character Vivienne appears in a side story mission commemorating the game's release
- You can transfer (with restrictions) your character data to PSP
- Special items can be obtained in the process
- Event mission celebrating two years of PSU (most likely August)
- New free mission
- More S2 rank free missions for AotI
- More Episode 3 story missions (Chapters 7 and 8)
- New GBR
- Level cap raised to 160
- New items
- Holy Light Festa lobby (mid July)
- Fireworks lobby (early August)

They also mention the intent of continuing to improve balance and game features as well as mission distribution. The notes after that are fixing mistakes in the information they sent to some media outlets.

I was assuming they'd probably release the airboard race mission permanently at some point. The level caps seem to be slowing down. I wonder if perhaps they holding off for some reason. If they are in production of a new expansion, they could be waiting to release it a bit more than a year later this time around. Perhaps PSP will make the wait easier for some. Speaking of which, I will be making some posts about PSP soon. I've been rather late on those.

Update: Number of story chapters added.

The first note is that items from MAG and Dengeki may be able to be combined in a future addition to an item exchange mission (such as Sange from MAG and Yasha from Dengeki as a possible example). I suppose there is still the possibility that more of the event only items will be added as well (as with the clothes prior).

The other note is to say the least confounding to everyone I've talked to. Looking at it a few times, I kept thinking of different meanings myself and it seems to be the same with others. It definately has to do with all A rank category and some S rank category weapons, but things from there get a little weird. The way it is listed in the chart is honestly unlike anything I've seen them mention before. It could potentially be that they will be adding new versions of these weapons (for example how some have /C or /G models).

I've linked the thread EspioKaos put up on PSOW today. Thanks goes to him for a few points. They also appear to be having some discussion over there about the mysterious bulletpoints too.

JP Future Content Release Estimates 3
PSOW Thread

Saturday, May 17, 2008

MAG: Ninth Milestone Hit



Another milestone down, three to go! It should only be a matter of time unlocking the rest as we have an additional two weeks to clear them now.

EN MAG Page

Friday, May 16, 2008

General: Lots of Announcements

MAG is officially extended for two weeks (until June 6th). The total kill board will continue to rack up kills towards locked milestones during this time. The current kill ranking leaderboards will freeze at the normal time (May 22nd). Then a new leaderboard will be started. This will allow an additional 500 Spread Needle / Gs (thanks to chillaura for the number confirmation). Characters that already qualify for a shotgun as of the originally dated end of the event will be disqualified from obtaining a second one.

The authentication servers have been set to allow in any nonbanned accounts. This will apply over the next three weeks while the rest of MAG is still in progress. Things are still subject to change, but until that happens the game is in a bit of a free period on the PC/PS2 side.

The current GM support schedule will remain until May 22nd. After this, they will be instating permanent hours. These will be Tuesdays and Fridays from 3-7 PM Pacific Time as well as Fridays 12-2 PM Pacific Time (to better suit European players).

All this said, it shouldn't be a problem at all now to hit the final (200 million) milestone.

Update: A new time attack leaderboard has now also been confirmed by chillaura.

New Announcements Discussion Thread
Error 65 Bypass Discussion Thread

Japan: PC/PS2 Update for May 22nd

Looks like the content update list for next week is out already. Here's some bulletpoints:

- Parum Unification Commemoration Lobbies (May 22nd to 29th) [PSUv1]
- Second Parum GBR (May 22nd to June 26th) [All AotI exclusive missions]
* Scarred Planet
* Lightning Beasts
* SEED Train Mission
* Electronic Brain
- SEED Train Mission C-S2 (Paracabana Coast to AMF Central Command)
- Mines of Illusion C-S (Rare Parum mission)
- Scarred Planet S2
- Lightning Beasts S2
- Electronic Brain S2
- New weapons and armor
- Parum Unity Souvenir available (May 22nd to June 5th) [PSUv1]
- Casino rotation
- Level cap raised from 140 to 150 [PSUv1]
- Photon Charges will now recover 100% of the PP drained from both weapons when dual wielding as opposed to 50% each [PSUv1]

I can possibly see the EN side receiving the Photon Charge update sometime soon. Usually system changes like that come quicker than the standard content updates.

Updates: There is maintenance on May 29th for the PSU mobile service. They will also be switching it's homepage at this time. The old page will still be able to be accessed until the end of June.

Update: From May 29th to June 5th there will be another GM event for GBR. The usual process seems to apply here.

Update: There was a post mentioning failure of the official homepage on May 22nd. They mentioned losing the support forms sent during that time.

Update: Because of some technical issues on their end, Sonic Team posted an article mentioning that maintenance would take longer than usual.

Update: Game version is now 2.0007.2. Certain tweaks have been made. Here's a list care of EspioKaos:

Changes
* Some of the drop items of the Grass Assassin have been changed.
* The contents of some of the boxes in "Scarred Planet" have been given an upward adjustment.
* The name of each standby area mission has been changed to take into account any missions distributed from now on. (I'm curious about this, but it doesn't list any other info.)

Bug fixes related to May 08's maintenance
* Enemy appearances have been changed in "White Beast" and "Dancing Birds." (Likely to combat AFK leveling.)

New bug fixes
* In "Dark Satellite," Deljabans were able to use Megid when they had been silenced. This has been corrected.

Previously-discovered bug fixes
* GH490 will now use its SUV weapon when a PSU player is in the party. Before, the partner machine would only use its SUV weapon when all party members were playing AOTI.

FAQs addition
An entry was added concerning mission counters displaying parties that have the same NPC participating multiple times; this is possible due to various conditions. (It doesn't go into specifics, but it doesn't seem to be a big deal.)
Update: Another mention of the technical issues on Sonic Team's end that are causing the delay. I also figured to post along the version that went up for 360 users. The official site does affect everyone after all.

Update: Something about the 'blog' not being updated correctly. Since it seems to have been under construction for awhile, they may mean the RSS feed. This might relate to the other problems they've been having.

JP Update Page
PSU Mobile Maintenance
GM GBR Event
Official Site Failure
Maintenance Extension
Game Server Update
More on Technical Issues
Xbox 360 Page on Site Failure
Blog Failure

Thursday, May 15, 2008

General: Maintenance for May 16th

First off, there won't be a maintenance period for Xbox 360 tonight.

I was told that there will still be maintenance for the PC/PS2 servers while they try to take care of some billing related issues. There are still some details to be worked out, however it has been mentioned by the GMs that we may see an extension of MAG. More information on both of these points should be on the horizon. There will probably be an official announcement in the near future on how the next few weeks will play out. From what I've been told, there won't be a delay of any upcoming content updates though.

Update: They have run a bypass of the authentication servers. It should now be possible for any prior unbanned PC/PS2 account to log in regardless of error or current active payment. It was also announced that there will be a fresh set of leaderboards for the MAG extension period of two weeks. Full details will be coming soon, so stay tuned!

Official Maintenance Announcement
JP 360 Maintenance Cancellation
Announcement Thread
Discussion Thread

Japan: PC/PS2 Maintenance for May 15th

I meant to mention this earlier, but still wanted to have a post for it. There was a scheduled downtime for the billing system which mostly affected account creation and modification more than logging in. In addition, the usual server maintenance didn't happen.

JP Billing Maintenance
JP Maintenance Cancellation

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

MAG: Eighth Milestone Hit



Good job to everyone on recently hitting this new milestone!

EN MAG Page
Rappy Tip at PSOW

Saturday, May 10, 2008

MAG: Seventh Milestone Hit



Definately the most anticipated unlock since Ruins. There are many good drops here, including a variety of new ones.

If you're on 360, you'll notice something else unlock when you beat it. Dark Falz is actually one of the hidden achievements.

EN MAG Page
Program DF at PSUP

Friday, May 9, 2008

MAG: Update for May 9th

Gifts from Beyond has been updated with new redemption prizes. These are:

PSO Disc 5 (5 Gold Badges)
PSO Disc 6 (5 Gold Badges)
Aura Field (15 Gold Badges)
DB Line (20 Gold Badges)
Pushan (99 Gold Badges)

This is essentially the last of the update that JP got for Dec 20 that we didn't get yet.

In other news, 92 million kills was broken as of the beginning of this maintenance. We're going to have to speed up a bit to reach the final milestone, but it's still within our grasp. Hopefully these new gifts and the soon to be unlocked MAG addition will give people the extra go to push it over the edge.

EN MAG Page
EN MAG Event Rewards
JP Update Page

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

MAG: Sixth Milestone Hit



Not too long ago we hit our most recent milestone. We are still mostly on track. As long as we manage to keep up our efforts and see things through, we'll be ok. I can say that the next milestone is going to be well worth it, so everyone hurry up and let's snag it!

EN MAG Page

Saturday, May 3, 2008

MAG: Fifth Milestone Hit



It looks like we're still on track to hitting our final milestone. Keep up the great work guys!

EN MAG Page

Thursday, May 1, 2008

General: PSU Calendar Wallpaper

English versions of the PSU calendar wallpaper have been posted on the official site. The only changes seem to be that 'Ambition of the Illuminus' is now in English as well as more relevant holidays are marked. The artist is also credited now. The aspect ratio seems off, but that might only be because the image seems to have been zoomed out a bit from the originals and the logo isn't scaled exactly how it used to be.

Official Announcement
Announcement Thread
Wallpaper Page

MAG: Fourth Milestone Hit



We've just hit a well anticipated milestone! The mission has now changed a bit. Ruins can be accessed after the 10 minute mark at the end of Mines (a door will unlock). The drops of the end boxes change depending on which NPC you allow to tag along. Kireek is now added as the Ruins NPC.

We're still going great in terms of hitting the final milestone, so keep it up!

EN MAG Page
MAG Drops at PSUP