Full Version: Phantasy Star, between Ra and the C's
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What happens when one door is closed, as happened with the end of the Ra contact? I think the source of such information tries many avenues, and during various periods of time, may work to transmit messages in many ways. If a more direct route is not available, then an indirect one, such as inspiring those who create fiction, may be used.

Some of the video games produced in the decade after the end of the Ra contact have interesting stories, in relation to channeled material. (I have the impression that the most interesting contents, with some exceptions, became more rare after the 16-bit era. As can perhaps be expected when it turns into big business.)

The four Phantasy Star video games, from 1987-1995, convey a science-fiction story which is interesting in relation to both Ra and the Cassiopaean material. (See the thread "Comparing Ra and the Cassiopaeans" for some recent discussion concerning the Cassiopaean material. Views on that material may differ among people here, though the approach of the Cassiopaean community is not in alignment with the approach of this community.)

The stories of Phantasy Star I, II, and IV take place in the fictional Algol solar system, located somewhere in the Andromeda Galaxy. These three form a sequence, with roughly a millennium separating one story setting from the next. The story of PS III is the odd one, taking place on a space ark on a long journey and with an uncertain future (the story branching out twice for four different endings).

The second of the four games has a story with striking parallels to part of the Cassiopaean story of our solar system. For those not familiar with the latter, it combines some of the contents from Ra with ideas of alien races and their doings, and some other contents, while changing names, timeframes, and some other details compared to Ra. As found in the PS II game (from 1990), the main story elements in common with the C's are:
- Conquerors arrived on a space ark and decided to take over the solar system.
- They took over by secretly being the brains behind a new, high-technological civilization.
- Life is lived under the central control of a supercomputer ("Mother Brain"), the population not knowing its true origins.
- Genetic experimentation, and the use of cloning and mind-uploading to revive people. (This is a looser match.)
- One of the planets blow up and is reduced to an asteroid belt.
- There's a partial evacuation on a fleet of space arks just prior to the explosion.

The parallels with the Ra material are weaker. Though then, it is the Cassiopaeans who, in discussing the culture of a destroyed planet in our solar system, mysteriously mention "Japan" as a clue to the lost culture. (The games were made and originally released in Japan, work on the originals ending before the Cassiopaean contact began in 1994.)

The fictional solar system (originally) has three inhabited planets: Motavia, a desert planet; Palma, a temperate planet; and Dezolis, cold and snowy. The center of human civilization is Palma, though it moves to a terraformed Motavia after the destruction of Palma.

There is a main 1000 year historical cycle which marks the end of civilizations, along with an intense struggle with an otherwordly demonic force which influences people in order to bring about death and destruction.

(Sometime between the first and second stories, the orbits of Palma and Motavia flip, due to a freak gravitational alignment. Whatever happened in the short term, there's no further elaboration on this particular "Great Disaster". The idea looks like a watered-down echo of Velikovskian ideas of solar system events.)

Below, I'll mainly focus on the second story, with brief summaries of the other three to provide a quick look at the bigger picture. Whether I make further posts on the topic of these stories depends on whether there's interest.

I'll take into account some of the fan-detailing about how the Japanese originals differ from the English translations. The English translations change names inconsistently between games and sometimes alter other details. I'll remove inconsistencies and fill in some gaps.

Phantasy Star (1987)

The first story takes place at a time when Palman civilization has been exploring and established minor colonies on the other two planets. (The native Motavians, bird-like humanoids, and the green-skinned native Dezolisians, only play a very small part in the story.)

The civilization is headed by King Lassic. Once a benevolent and well-respected ruler, he has gone through a drastic transformation. Engaging in a metaphysical bid for power, he became the loyal servant of a demon. The people do not know this, but they do know that Lassic has turned into a totalitarian tyrant who violently suppresses all dissent with an army of robotcops.

(The English version changed Lassic's role from seeking out the force of darkness to the dark force seeking him out: Before Lassic's transformation, he joined a shadowy religion, rumored to come from another galaxy. Promising immortality to its adherents, Lassic became one of the first to join.)

The main protagonist is a young woman named Alis, who encounters her brother mortally wounded and left for dead by Lassic's thugs. After the attackers have left with the comment that what they have done will teach him not to "sniff around in Lassic's affairs", his dying words to her include directions for finding a resistance fighter.

The rest of the story is the story of Alis' journey across the solar system, and a group of four banding together to take down the tyrant, doing so, and then suddenly facing a demon in a struggle they are not prepared for - but making it, barely, nonetheless.

(The details are more oriented towards entertainment than anything deep or philosophical. For instance, one of the four is a "musk cat", a type of cat which talks.)

Phantasy Star II (1989, 1990)

Roughly a thousand years have passed since the fall of Lassic. People live in a very different civilization of misty origins, but the development of which has been fairly recent and sudden.

All the institutions of society are centrally directed by the "Mother Brain" computer, and government officials merely have the task of smoothly implementing and maintaining its policies.

People consider the unknown builders of Mother Brain to be the greatest benefactors humanity has ever known. All basic needs are provided for, and most do not need to work. Further human progress is, in part, a project taking place in facilities for genetic experimentation run by Mother Brain.

Central to the story is a terraformed Motavia. Climate, and other aspects of the environment surrounding the cities, are regulated by systems under the control of Mother Brain. (Palmans have largely displaced the native Motavians, who are reduced to dumpster-diving as a means of sustaining themselves.)

Among government agents, premature death can be defied using a cloning and mind-uploading process, provided that remains sufficient for the cloning process are available.

The protagonist is a Motavian government agent (of the Palman human type, as are all the significant characters in the story). Rolf, a young man, has been suffering recurring nightmares in which a young woman is in a desperate battle with a demon (a reference to the first story). A day after he has one of those dreams, he is given a very unusual task, the danger of which his superior warns him.

Recently, due to a malfunction in a bio-engineering facility, dangerous mutated creatures have begun to rampage the areas outside the cities. In order to get rid of these "biomonsters", Rolf is given the task of finding, and if possible, fixing the problem.

One thing quickly leads to the next, and a small group begins to gather around Rolf, more people joining him as his work proceeds. The first to come along is Nei, an experimentally bio-engineered woman who has stayed with Rolf since the time he saved her from an unruly crowd which denounced her as a monster.

Once they make it to the Biosystems facility, they are able to reach its main computer. Rolf extracts a recording, in which people at his workplace find evidence of unusual energy consumption and the re-routing of energy from the Climatrol system that is meant to keep the planet temperate.

The next step becomes finding out what happened at Climatrol. There, they meet a woman with the same appearance and origins as Nei. Having escaped death at the hands of researchers who labeled her a failed experiment, she became an embittered outcast, sabotaging the Biosystems to exact revenge. The two, Nei and her look-alike, turn out to have a shared past, and to be linked in such a way that the death of one means the death of the other. Nevertheless, opposed to one another to the core, they fight. When Nei dies, the others kill her attacker.

In the meantime, energy has built up dangerously in the weather control system. By the time Rolf and his remaining companions notice what's happening, the best they can do is to escape the building before explosions erupt.

Returning to work, Rolf hears of the consequences. The rain supply is being dumped into the lake surrounding Climatrol all at once, and a flooding disaster must now be averted. Malfunctioning controls mean that dams have to be opened manually. Furthermore, Rolf is warned that the Palma-directed security system has taken an unhealthy interest in him. Keeping a low profile is his best option for avoiding the security robots.

Rolf soon hears word spreading that he and his group are going to be hunted down for sabotage. Nevertheless, he sees it as his responsibility to open the dams and save people. They find and take the control cards for the dams, then visit and open them one by one. But just as they leave the final dam after opening it, they are surrounded by robots that zap them unconscious.

It turns out to be costly to act against the will of Mother Brain. Rolf and his team wake up aboard a prison satellite where people are sent upon receiving death sentences. In order to ensure inmates do not escape, they wear devices which inflict electric shocks in response to movement. Rolf and his friends feebly move around when they hear an enormous explosion. Soon, it is clear the satellite has gone off course. Desperately walking around to try to find out what's happening, they realize it's going to crash into Palma, just before losing consciousness.

They wake up on the ship of a space pirate who has rescued them. (The Japanese original adds a detail: They actually did die aboard the satellite. What the rescuer did was to recover their remains and bring them back to life through cloning and mind-uploading.) And shocking news are in store.

The planet Palma has blown up - and just before it did, the prison satellite was crashed into the planet. After telling them the news, the space pirate agrees to teleport them back to Rolf's old city, where people at the local branch of the government still hold Rolf in high regard.

Rolf's old commander is relieved to find Rolf safe, and convinced of Rolf's innocence, offers the use of an old space shuttle. With it, they have the means to visit the other remaining planet, Dezolis, in search for answers. (Under the reign of Mother Brain, space travel became strictly regulated, generally ending the earlier interplanetary travel within the solar system.)

They land at a large mining facility, long abandoned after a gas leak killed the Palman settlers who lived and worked there. From there, they venture through a landscape of snow and ice, as well as a few native Dezolisian towns. (The Dezolisians are largely uninterested in Palmans and their doings and technology, though they build in stone and religiously venerate fire.)

Finally, the group reaches a place that has answers: the secluded home of the Espers, Palmans whose genetically endowed telemental abilities set them apart, and who have isolated themselves from the larger Palman civilization. Their leader, Lutz, is very old. Kept in cryogenic hibernation most of the time, he usually spends time awake only once every ten years, unless there is an emergency that requires his attention.

(Lutz is the name of one of the four protagonists in the first story, and presumably the same person. However, the English translators changed his name to Noah in the first game, but not in the rest.)

The fate of the solar system is certainly important, and Lutz emerges from his sleep to discuss matters. It turns out Rolf and Lutz have met once before, and that Lutz saved Rolf from a deadly accident in childhood. Lutz is convinced that Rolf is a descendant of Alis.

Mother Brain turns out to be located on a space ark named "Noah". To take down the system, equipment is needed, and Lutz gives the group the preparatory task of gathering it. Rolf and his team journey extensively, until they have obtained what they need. Thereafter, Lutz uses his powers to teleport the group to the space ark Noah.

They move through a series of corridors until Rolf encounters a box. Upon opening, he and the others suddenly face the demon of Rolf's nightmares. Perhaps this "hidden treasure" is the invisible brains behind Mother Brain.

Following a difficult battle with a vile and bombastic enemy, they make it further through the space ark and reach the room in which Mother Brain is located. Projecting an image of a great and benevolent mother-goddess figure, the computer declares its indispensability, describing the weakness of the people and their complete dependence on it. Without it, there would only be panic and chaos.

Overcoming the defenses of the machine and destroying it, something more still remains. Lutz telepathically informs Rolf that there are other people on the ship. Walking on, the group enters a large hall.

Here, they meet the Earthmen. Facing them is line after line of armed, uniformed people, whose leader soon speaks. The leader of the Earthmen tells them, briefly, of how they came to the solar system on a journey for a new home after destroying their own planet. Finding the people of Algol "living in simple happiness", the Earthmen decided that they wanted it all. Taking credit for the destruction of the planet Palma, the leader asks Rolf and his vastly outnumbered companions if they really think they can stop the Earthmen.

Sensing that Rolf needs help, Lutz has used his powers to gather more of Rolf's friends, and suddenly teleports them into the room to provide a little reinforcement. But the group is still greatly outnumbered.

And then the battle begins. But its end is newer shown.

The final scene shows a hexagonal object flying through the solar system. This is a reference to the sequel, with its backstory of a Palman evacuation on a fleet of newly built, hexagonally-shaped space arks just before the planetary explosion.

Phantasy Star III (1990, 1991)

The original title translated into "Successors of Time: Phantasy Star III", but the English translators found that too weird and changed it to Phantasy Star III: Generations of Doom.

The story follows the inhabitants of a space ark during a crucial part of its multi-millenial journey through space. The space ark consists of seven world domes interconnected in a hexagonal shape, and has two satellites in orbit.

A thousand years have passed since a terrible war destroyed civilization, leaving the survivors in "a world of mutated creatures and warring pockets of men". Following the destruction, knowledge was rapidly lost, and most of the inhabitants are without any understanding of the nature of their world.

During the ancient war, the leaders of the two sides suddenly ordered their followers to no longer kill, before disappearing at the same time. The Orakians - followers of Orakio - worked around it by building robots to kill for them. The Layans - followers of Laya - instead created biological monstrosities for an army.

The descendants of the two warring factions remain culturally divided, each elevating its ancient leader to the status of a mythical diety and demonizing the counterpart on the other side.

Most live in monarchical city-states and smaller towns strewn across the world domes, with little travel between the worlds. But a series of events leads a young prince to begin a journey of exploration and rediscovery carried on by his son and grandson. As history unfolds, the journey transforms into a quest to avert ultimate disaster for the space ark.

There are four possible endings, as the story branches out at each change of generation with the choice of whom the old protagonist will marry. The second generation comes in two distinctly different versions, while the variations for the third generation converge, even as the endings diverge.

One main branch leads to a black hole and the question of whether or not it is avoided. The other may lead either to nearly flying into a star, and finding that its solar system has a suitable home, or to coming into contact with one of the other two remaining ships of the same type.

There's far more in terms of structured details to the story and symbolism than there is elaborate development connected to it. I think the story writer had much more in mind, but ran out of time and budget. (The planner was a junior staff member for the second game who developed ideas for another one.)

I could do a fuller write-up for the quirky and neatly structured story of this game, which I have found interesting since I played it in my teens.

A final detail for a short summary is that on the space ark, four worlds are the main homes of ancient knowledge. One houses the secluded home of the pilots, one the secluded home of the engineers, and two others each contain a floating city. One of the sky-cities is the home of a few humble wise men, while the other, the "Holy City of Lashute", turns out to be the home of the ultimate evil. (Naming associations link the "Holy City" to Jerusalem. Symbolically, perhaps the "heavenly" Jerusalem of Revelations. This interpretation may however be disliked by those who trust the Bible.)

Phantasy Star IV (1993, 1995)

A thousand years after the fall of Mother Brain, people live in simpler times. And a great and decisive battle between good and evil approaches.

The story first unfolds towards a confrontation with Zio the Black Magician, a cult leader and all-around scary character who has been issuing threats and turned a leading researcher into stone in order to halt the exploration of the ruins of an ancient and advanced civilization.

A few people from Motavia (which has partly returned to being a desert world) - including an actual Motavian - and two ancient androids, and an old Dezolisian priest, among others, end up on a very strange journey through the solar system.

The solar system turns out to have a fourth planet with a highly eccentric orbit, home to non-physical beings who instruct and prepare the heroes for the great battle which awaits them.

The nature of the ultimate evil is explained, but the English version censors the explanation and replaces it with a dualistic creation story (the good is the creator and the evil is the antithesis of the creator). The creator banished its nihilistic dark counterpart to a realm outside the Universe.

The Japanese version instead tells a story of an ancient interplanetary war in a divided civilization of non-physical beings. The victorious side seals the defeated side away. The souls of the defeated side then meld together into a single, malevolent entity, pure in its hatred and destructiveness. Much later, the race of victors die out.

The "Profound Darkness" seeks to break free and re-enter the Universe in order to annihilate. The solar system is described as being part of the sealing structure, by an ancient design, explaining why the source of each millennium's demon has worked hard to blow up planets.

The demon-battling heroes across the millenia all turn out to be connected at the soul level. These "Protectors" are what remains to stand against the ultimate evil threatening the solar system.

There's some interesting ideas in the story, but I have the sense that the weight had shifted towards wrapping it all up in an entertaining package by the time this game was made. For a fuller write-up, perhaps skipping the less essential parts and instead focusing on themes would be more interesting.