Best Phantasy Star Games, Ranked

The Phantasy Star franchise has existed for almost four decades, with many great releases on various video gaming platforms over the years. Phantasy Star is a series of predominantly role-playing games set in a sci-fi fantasy world spanning over several planets, initially released for the Sega Master System in 1987.

In the game, players use a combination of magic, weapons and technology to defeat enemies and complete quests. Many of the Phantasy Star games are considered classics in the RPG genre, especially the earlier entries released by Sega. These are the best Phantasy Star games to date, ranked by their metascore.


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8 Phantasy Star 3: Generations of Doom

Metascore: 65

Phantasy Star 3 Generations of Doom In-game Screen Shot

Phantasy Star 3 was released for the Sega Genesis console in 1990 in Japan, and worldwide in 1991. Unlike the later Phantasy Star games, which follow the action role-playing game format, Phantasy Star 3 is a turn-based role-playing game like the original.

True to the 1990s, the game uses 2D graphics and random enemy encounters with turn-based combat. What makes this game in the series special, is the fact that it spans different generations of characters, and so the player chooses a new character with each generation. This is a fun feature, as each characters’ abilities and techniques differ, influencing the gameplay, as well as the endings of the game, depending on which character is chosen.

7 Phantasy Star Portable 2

Metascore: 69

Phantasy Star Portable 2 Game Cover

Phantasy Star Portable 2

Alfa System

Action RPG

September 14, 2010

As the title of the game suggests, Phantasy Star Portable 2 was developed for the PlayStation Portable handheld console. The game was released in Japan in 2009, and worldwide a year later, and is the sequel to Phantasy Star Portable, released only one year before. For a PSP game, Phantasy Star Portable 2 has a lot going on, in a good way.


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In Phantasy Star Portable 2, the player can either import their character from its predecessor, or create a fully customizable new character. The gameplay is rather addictive, and players even have the option to form a party with other online players at no extra cost.

6 Phantasy Star Online Episode 3: C.A.R.D. Revolution

Metascore: 71

Phantasy Star Online Episode III C.A.R.D. Revolution Dolphin Cover

Phantasy Star Online Episode 3: C.A.R.D. Revolution

In contrast to other Phantasy Star games in the franchise, Phantasy Star Online Episode 3 is a turn-based digital card game. The game was released for the GameCube console in Japan in 2003, and worldwide in 2004.

Phantasy Star Online Episode 3 was playable offline against the CPU or online against friends. Players need to use a deck of thirty cards to defeat the opponent in various game modes, such as story mode or a customizable online game. While it might not have been entirely what fans expected, in and of itself, many consider it a good game even today.

5 Phantasy Star 0

Metascore: 71

Phantasy Star 0 Promotional Image

Phantasy Star 0
RPG , Hack and Slash

November 10, 2009

Released for the Nintendo DS console, Phantasy Star 0 is a sort of combination of Phantasy Star Online and Phantasy Star Universe. The character creation mechanics from Phantasy Star Online, as well as its online functionalities, like the hub, shop and bank, all feature in Phantasy Star 0.

The game was released in Japan in 2008, but only made it to America in 2009 and Europe in 2010. While it did not reach the iconic status of Phantasy Star Online, it’s a decent Nintendo DS game.

4 Phantasy Star

Metascore: 82

First Phantasy Star Game Box Art

Phantasy Star
RPG , Action RPG , Hack and Slash


The first ever Phantasy Star game was released in 1987 for the Sega Master System, and still holds up as one of the best games in the entire franchise. There have been various remakes of the original that enhance the game and make it even better, with improved graphics, music, and dialogue.

The game set a new standard for RPGs at the time, with its 3D dungeon crawling element, and graphics that surpassed its contemporaries. Many players might find the dungeons in this game especially challenging, which adds to the game’s allure and cult status.

3 Phantasy Star Online Episode 1 and 2

Metascore: 85

Phantasy Star Online Episode 1 and 2 Box Art

Phantasy Star Online Episode 1 & 2

Action RPG

October 29, 2002

Following much drama and many losses surrounding the Dreamcast console, Sega discontinued it and ported Phantasy Star Online to the GameCube – and so Phantasy Star Online Episode 1 and 2 was born. In 2003, both episodes were also ported to the Xbox console.


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While Episode 1 is an improved version of the original Phantasy Star Online game, Episode 2 consists of entirely new content, with new characters, quests, environments, and even a split-screen mode. Episode 2 can even be considered a sequel to Phantasy Star Online, and even though it is not quite as good as the original, it is a great entry in the Phantasy Star franchise.

2 Phantasy Star 4: The End of the Millennium

Metascore: 87

Phantasy Star 4 The End of the Millennium Box Art

Phantasy Star 4

December 17, 1993

Phantasy Star 4: The End of the Millennium, which is one of the earlier Phantasy Star games, turned out to be one of the best, even by today’s gaming standards. Phantasy Star 4 was released in 1993 in Japan, and worldwide only two years later, in 1995, for the Sega Genesis console.

Phantasy Star 4 is a typical offline RPG game, with many avenues for exploration, and turn-based combat, like the game’s Phantasy Star predecessors. What makes this one special is the fact that it seems to take all the best elements from the first three Phantasy Star games and combine them into a coherent and addictive finale.

1 Phantasy Star Online

Metascore: 89

Phantasy Star Online Box Art Dreamcast

Phantasy Star Online

December 21, 2000

The top Phantasy Star game to date is Phantasy Star Online, released more than two decades ago in the year 2000. Phantasy Star Online is very significant in the sense that it was the first online RPG ever published for consoles, and allowed parties of up to four players to explore and fight together in real-time.

While the game’s single-player mode is lacking, it set the precedent for other online Phantasy Star games to follow, as well as online console RPGs played today. The game’s commercial servers closed in 2010, but it is still playable on private servers for die-hard fans.

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