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Walkthrough

Use this guide discreetly, since a blind, step by step following of the text can detract from the gaming experience.

[Note: All my quotes from this game are from the translation by "Magic Translations" (the
 people who wrote the patch so we non-Japanese-speaking PS-fans could play it)]

THE STORY:
[slightly paraphrased from the game's intro]
"Long ago, the evil Cablon ravaged the planet Copto, one light-year distant from the Algol
 system.  In defeat, he was sealed on that colony planet, later discovered by Alis, and
 nicknamed "Alisland".  Now, it's AW813*, a time of growing unrest.  Alec and Mina are two
 youths from Tedo Village, who revere the legend of Alis and Odin, as told by the elder who
 raised Mina, an orphan."

* [Anyone know what "AW" is? If it's the same timeline as Phantasy Star 1, then it takes
place 471 years after PS1 began (in "Space Century 342").]

KEEP IN MIND (when playing this game):
-Unlike most other RPGs, all the Weapons, Armor, and Spells in this game are usable by any
 character.  No character much better than any other at fighting or spell-use.  The only
 restriction is on what level the character must be before they can equip a given item or
 learn a given spell.  None of the characters has an exceptional amount of Magic Points, so
 it makes sense only to learn the two or three main spells (see below).
-The random encounter rate in this game is staggering.. every couple of steps you'll have a
 monster encounter.  I chalk this up to the fact that the world map is small, and a "step" on
 it probably represents travelling a longer distance.  Besides, the encounter rate is balanced
 by the fact that...
-You can [almost] *always* run from monsters (with the possible exception of Robot Cops, who
 I had some trouble running from).  Nine times out of ten, you'll be able to run away with your
 lead character, but if you can't, each of your other characters gets a chance, and this is all
 before the monsters get to attack you, because...
-You always attack first, each person as soon as you select his/her action for that round.
 This will often result in you not getting hit at all, or reducing the number of things you're
 fighting against [the maximum in this game is two monsters].  However, if you're fighting a
 difficult monster [or boss], this is the time to cast some important spells...
-The two most important spells in the game are "Protect" & "Terror".  The former cancels the
 monster's ability to cast spells (the only thing you have to fear from most of them --
 many will try to run away when you do this!), and the latter decreases their attack ability
 (and as far as I can tell, it's cumulative!).  The only useful spell in the game is whatever
 healing one you can cast at your current level.  It starts out as "heal", which heals five
 points, but there are others.  I, however, stopped at the next one ["Bi-Heal": 35 points],
 because healing isn't a top priority in this game [see bullet #3, above].
-The order your characters are in is important: the lead person is attacked about 75% of the
 time, the 2nd person about 20%, and the 3rd person about 5%.  The 3rd person can often venture
 out unarmored if you need to buy the lead person better armor or weapons.
-Certain monsters give XP or treasure disproportionate to their difficulty (Gold Slimes,
 especially, give you *way* too much XP).  Pick your fights.
-Not only do you need more XP than you did last level to gain a new level [as usual], but the
 XP awards go down as well (according to the character's level).  So sometimes you'll see one
 person get 20 XP for something, and another only get 10.  FYI.
-If you happen to die, you'll find you don't *really* die.  You just wake up at the last
 church you were at, with one HP.  As far as I can tell, there's no loss in XP or treasure, so
 it could be used as a simple way to return home from a difficult maze (if there were such a
 thing in this game).  I found myself avoiding death anyway (out of habit, I assume). 
-I've played through this game twice now, and both times [but at different parts], I
 simply stop encountering monsters.  This is a refreshing change, but it can't go on
 indefinitely, because you need to be high enough level to equip the laconian items, let
 alone beat Cablon.  I think resetting the game fixes this, or you might consider using
 the "call" tool (found in Mektor's items shop), which is a monster-summoner.


THE GAME:

Alec & Mina learn that Alec's father, Morg, is being held hostage by Mountain Bandits
(called "Daedalus Bandits" by the elder [a different elder than the one who raised
Mina]--They'd been ambushed while looking for Laconian ore.  Alec is given the Wisdom
Mirror.
-The wisdom mirror appears to increase the stats of your weapons & armor, but it can't be
 used in combat, and I don't know how long it lasts when you use it.  It's never used up.

First, go see "Old Rob" [Mina won't let you out of town before you do].  He's in the
upper-right hand corner of town--there's a little path near the road out of town (this
took me a little while to find).  Old Rob notices the Light Pendant that Mina has, and
points out its place in a prophesy: two people would aquire the Pendant, and save the
planet. (Guess who THEY are!)  He tells you to get the Scroll of Truth from the cave to
the West of town.
-The "light" pendant that Mina starts out with is a perpetual-use torch, which makes the
torches they sell in the shops (as well as the ones some monsters drop) useless.

Buy 2 Leather shields and a White robe (or whatever), and equip them all [using the
"item" menu; the "equip" menu is only to UN-equip something.  Go figure.]
Also, remember to reverse the travelling order.  For whatever reason, Mina starts out in front.
Go earn experience.  Raising levels is easy for quite a while.  The monsters drop enough
Monomate to let you stay out indefinitely.  The only dangerous creature near town is Red
Slime, which can zap you w/ Flaeli.  It takes about 20 minutes to get both Alec & Mina to
level 6, when you should come in & re-arm for your trip to the cave.  You should have
enough $ for a Silver Sword & Iron Armor for Alec (give the hand-me-down Short Sword &
White Robe to Mina [see "Keep in Mind", above]).  Before you attempt the cave, you may
want to earn enough cash for the "Protect" and "Terror" spells [again, see "Keep in
Mind"].  Give them both to Mina (though when you can afford it, an extra copy of Protect
for Alec is a good idea.
Go to the cave & get the scroll.  (Yes, it's that easy; head left upon entering).
You may also notice there's a door you can't get through; you'll open that up later from
the other side.
Give the scroll to Old Rob.  He reads to you that Alec and Mina will eventually defeat
Cablon, and he also reads that Mina is the daughter of Alis!  Keen!
Anyway, the story is open-ended here, and you're left to wander around & raise levels
looking for Alec's dad.  First, head SouthWest, & find the town Mektor (across the bridge).
Here you learn that:  Morg headed toward Karkato (to the South); There's a map in Tinyville
 (to the North); There are Ancient Ruins in the South, but they're guarded.
Do some fighting near town & heal at the Inn until you can afford the good stuff at the
Weapon shop.  Farther South are a harder batch of monsters when you're ready for them (look
especially for the Gold Slimes I mentioned above)
Tinyville: you learn:  A hermit (Popo's teacher) lives in the mountains; Popo lost his map.
Go to the cave: Lao-Tse [the hermit] is the first thing you encounter:  beat him & get
the map. (Note: use Protect on him & he's a piece of cake.  He never hit me once.)
(Note #2:  The map isn't *needed* for anything, it's just so you can see where you are.)
You can continue through the cave to find the key and open that door, even though it
would take longer to use the cave to travel between towns than it does to take the land
route, so I don't see the point (but I did it anyway).
Go south to Karkato.  This is a fishing village, but all their boats were sank.  Also, you
learn that they make a drink called Ouzo here.  Buy one at the Item shop.
Go East to the Ruins.  The guardian of the ruins makes a not-too-subtle hint that you can
get in if you give him Ouzo.  The way to give it to him [this isn't entirely clear]:
after you've talked to him, and you're standing over the ruins, use the Ouzo.  Once
inside, get the ATV (in a treasure chest, of course).  Stock up your weapons & armor at
Karkato before heading north back over the bridge and east to the Gypsy camp bordering
the desert.  Here you learn that Morg crossed the desert [that guy got around!], and that
there's a fortune teller in town.
The fortune teller is the only reason for this "town".  If you buy "Inspiration" or
"Crystal Ball" you only get sayings, so save your money; here they are:
Inspiration - "Close the sluice to stop the river from flowing."
Crystal Ball - "Find Dirk in the Lost Forest -- 3 right and 2 left."
You'll need to buy the Tarot Card thing because you get an item with it - the Bracelet of Kura
(but you won't need it until the very end of the game, so you can save your money for now).
She also tells you: "A wee enemy will join; a big one will guide. A boat will appear when the
master is found."  You'll figure these out when you come to them; they [like everything else
in this game] aren't too hard to figure out.
Wander around in the desert for a while, fighting these harder monsters.  Then cross the
bridge in the South, and immediately enter the cave you'll see there.  The monsters
outside the cave on the South side of the bridge are much more difficult, but those
inside the cave are as easy as those surrounding Mektor.  The only items of interest in
the cave are Trimate and a Perseus Shield, the latter of course you'll want to equip
right away.  It'll help you survive the trip to Porum, to the East.  Here you learn that:
the bridge between Porum and Tarrytown was destroyed by bandits;  Dirk has the gatehouse
key (to close the sluice); and that to the South is the Lost Forest (which no one has
ever returned from!  Guess where YOU'RE headed next??).  Dirk--if you've been checking
back w/ Old Rob from time to time--is Old Rob's elder brother.  Remember that the Gypsy
fortuneteller told you he was in the Lost Forest.  You may want to raise some levels and
get yourself better weapons & armor first.  There are some good spells here, but sadly
the game is constructed so you don't need to depend on them (except for the two mentioned
above ["Keep in Mind"].  Your best investment is in weapons & armor.  Then head South
into the Lost Forest [which isn't hard to navigate; I'll let you figure it out], and
find Dirk on the Western end.  Take him home (the house in the middle), & he'll give you
the sluice key and come with you.  Exit the forest and head North up the river until you
get to the gatehouse, and use the key on it.  It'll ask you what direction to turn the
valve: this is why the fortuneteller told you "3 right and 2 left".  The river stops, and
you can cross the dry riverbed to Tarrytown ("The donut capital of the world!") on the
other side.  Also, if you go back to see Old Rob (not that you need to), he reminds you
to look for the 3 Laconian items.  They're in the caves to the North of Tarrytown: the 3
on the Western side contain the Laconian items [do these first!], and the Easternmost one
contains the Bandits you've heard so much about.  But first you'll need to do some major
level advancement. It's slower here than it has been until now; first, fight the monsters
east of Porum, and then start fighting the monsters on the Tarrytown side of the river
(after you're level 20 or 21). Since you can only equip the Laconian items at level 20,
it makes no sense to try earlier; but by the same token, since you can equip them at
level 20, it makes sense to get them soon after you achieve that level, so you can kill
harder monsters and raise levels faster.  Remember, you can just run from just about
everything if you can't handle it.
After you have the Laconian items and are around 22nd level or so, go to the "Daedalus
Cave" (the Easternmost one).  The robots in this cave don't seem to let you run as easily
as other monsters do, but it's still not too hard to get to Daedalus (you'll know when
you're there).  Heal up and then go fight him (use Protect and a few doses of Terror).
You may also want to un-equip Dirk's items beforehand , since he'll leave after this battle,
and he probably won't take part in the physical battle anyway.
Now I'm not too sure of this part of the plot: Daedalus starts out saying, "I am the servant
of Cablon - Leave now.. or perish!" -- but after you beat him, he says, "Must find the
Master!  Cablon must be defeated now!".  If anyone can offer insight as to why/how he was
controlled by Cablon, I'd appreciate it.  Dirk recognizes him as The Guardian of Alis's
Champion, and he [Daedalus] tells you his name is actually Lars.  He mentions the name of
a cave (Mizurina?), which is on the East side of the lost forest (though you can get to
it w/o going through the forest), which is where "The Master" is. Dirk fixes him and he
joins your group.  Morg shows up in this scene as well. [Remember him?  The reason we're
adventuring in the first place?  I'd forgotten too.]  He'd been a prisoner of Daedalus/
Lars, but now he's free to leave.  Mina insists that Alec continue on with her rather
than go back to Tedo.  Dirk leaves to go back to visit Old Rob.
Go back to town to heal, give Lars the Armor & Weapons you took off of Dirk, then go
right to the Mizurina Cave (don't bother to advance Lars in levels; you won't be using
him long).  The monsters in this cave are like the ones outside--weaker than the ones
near the bandits' caves.  In the lower-left corner of the caves is a large metal box;
un-equip Lars' items before you approach it (because you won't be using him to fight
after this).  The box turns out to be where Alis is cryogenically frozen (why, I'm not
sure).  She's thawed, and she confirms that she is Mina's mother.  She says that that they
were destined by prophesy to meet, because she created the Scroll of Truth (do these two
statements appear to anyone else to contradict each other?).  Lars turns into a land rover,
to make room in the party for Alis. [Despite this game's shortcomings, it's worth it just to
see Alis again (although she's changed her hair color since PS1).]
It's time to go fight Cablon!  This is where the Gypsy's phrase, "A boat will appear when
the master is found," comes in.. Lars can turn into a boat, too.  You can go to Cablon's
castle now (on the island in the lake) if you want, but you're probably not strong enough
to handle the monsters there (not that you need to; you could run from them & just fight
Cablon himself, but where's the fun in that?).  So I'd stay near the bandit's caves and
fight the creatures there for a while (especially Shadows).  After you're all equipped with
the best equipment, head to the castle.  The monsters on the first & second levels are harder
than those on the third, so I mostly run from the former.  I fight "WDragons" & Skeletons and
run from most everything else.
When you get to Cablon, be sure to use that Wisdom item on all your characters; it seems to
make some difference.
Cablon gloats that Lars helped him get his power back (while Lars was deluded, I assume),
and he'll try to make a deal with you in which he'd give you this planet (in exchange for,
I assume, leaving him alone?).  You refuse (obviously), and the battle begins.
The usual tactic (Terror and Protect) doesn't seem to work on him, but when you use the Kura
item (which you got from the fortune-teller) on him, he gets much weaker (often missing you
with physical attacks, and becoming more vulnerable to all your attacks.  Then you just keep
attacking repeatedly until Cablon dies.  You may need to use a Dimate or Trimate every now &
then, but I didn't (I had raised Alec & Mina to level 27, & Alis to 26).  You appear back in
Tedo, and at Old Rob's, Alis informs you that even though Cablon is dead, "A greater evil is
awakening.  Not in Copto.. still, I must..." (at which Mina gets upset that her newly-found
mother will abandon her again).  She says she's needed, to save the Algol system (again).
"The End."

IMHO: Not bad for a Game Gear game, but not good for an RPG.  It may be "Phantasy Star" in
name, but it's not really in spirit (but then, neither was PS3--but that's another debate).

Questions/Plot Holes:
- Exactly when DOES this game take place?  If my theory above [after "The Story"] is correct,
then why is Alis in hibernation 471 years after she saves Algol?
- What was the need to start a colony world?  the Palma of PS1 had lots of space...
- I assume she didn't become queen of Algol at the end of PS1, if she left to start a colony
world?  She still looks pretty young [no older than 35, IMO], so if she became queen around
age 20, she would've had a fairly brief reign before leaving to start a colony world.
- She obviously had Mina while she wasn't in hibernation, and Mina was probably never in
hibernation herself, since she never knew her mother [meaning she'd have been an infant when
Alis went into hibernation, and I'd guess it's risky to freeze an infant?]
-Who's the father?  Is it Odin? (My only circumstantial evidence is the mention of the two of
them in the beginning of the game).
-Why DOES Alis go into hibernation, anyway?  Especially if she knew about Cablon? (She wrote
in the Scroll of Truth that Mina & Alec would defeat him.)
-Where does Lars fit into all that?  If he's "The defender of Alis's Champion" [as Dirk says],
and "Alis's Champion" is either Alec or Mina [I never could figure that out], then why hadn't
either one of them ever seen him?
-Most importantly, where does Alis go next (where "a greater evil is awakening", that
 apparently threatens the Algol system)?  Maybe someone out in PS-Fan-Land could whip up a little
unofficial sequel?...

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