Phantasy Star III: Generations of Doom
Genre: Sci-Fi Role-Playing
There are elements that a series needs to hold its own after a number of iterations. Looking at franchises like Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, Breath of Fire– and yes, Phantasy Star- there is always a need for new mechanics, more engaging stories, and overall higher quality content to justify to the fans that they should return to your series. The first entry is an introduction; a work that needs to be pushed through its outward presentation before gamers will give it a whirl. The second entry is a proving ground, where a series shows that it can deliver lightning in the same place again with a few upgrades here and there.
The third entry is the experiment. With Final Fantasy, we got interchangeable classes. With Dragon Quest, the ability to create your own party with their own quirks. With Phantasy Star III: Generations of Doom, there was a solid jumping off point with the improvements that the second game offered over the first, but there were still some mechanics that could use a little work for one reason or another. Given the success of the series thus far and being the first RPG series on the Sega system, it was imperative for the third Phantasy Star to dig in its heels and stake its claim to continue on successfully.
While we know that Phantasy Star IV released, leading one to believe that part three can’t have done too poorly, how exactly does Phantasy Star III stand up to the rest of the series? Given how fondly people usually speak about the second and fourth pieces of the mainline series, it’s interesting to see the evolution into the third and where it hits and misses the targets set up by prior entries.