[-[[caption-width-right:330:Saving the universe from [[EldritchAbomination Dark Force]] since 1987!]]-]

Creator/{{Sega}}'s answer to the RPG craze of the late 1980s, the ''Phantasy Star'' series was a classic contemporary to ''VideoGame/DragonQuest'' and ''Franchise/FinalFantasy''. Having been in the hands of several of Sega's development studios (in chronological order: Sega [=RD4=], Sega [=AM7=] (Overworks/Sega Wow), and Sega [=AM8=] (Creator/SonicTeam)), the franchise has taken several different forms since its inception.

The original tetralogy of turn-based role-playing games is primarily set in the Algol solar system, focusing on the planets Palma, Motavia, and Dezoris. Across thousands of years, various heroes rise to combat those who would threaten their home worlds, particularly the evil entity known as Dark Force.

Three {{Gaiden Game}}s, mostly focused on ''Phantasy Star II'', were released as well. ''Phantasy Star II Text Adventures'' and ''Phantasy Star Adventure'', a duo of text-based {{Adventure Game}}s, explored the past of the ''PSII'' cast and told an unrelated story set in the same era of the Algol system's history, respectively. ''Phantasy Star Gaiden,'' an {{Eastern RPG}} for the UsefulNotes/GameGear, took place roughly halfway between ''I'' and ''II'' in the Copto star system, a sector of space colonized by the Alogols. The protagonists are two colonists, Alec and Mina--the latter being a descendant of ''I'''s heroine, Alis Landale. [[NoExportForYou None of these games were released outside of Japan.]]

A number of times, the games of the tetralogy have been ported to newer consoles. At one point, there was even a [[VideoGameRemake Remake]] of the first two games in the tetralogy--''Phantasy Star Generation 1'' and ''Generation 2''--for the UsefulNotes/PlayStation2. On top of a more fleshed-out story (''far'' more in ''Generation 1'''s case) and updated graphics, there were a few additional quests and tweaks made to the remakes. [[NoExportForYou Of course, nobody outside Japan got to see these either]]. A similar remake of ''IV'' was planned and a US release bundling the ''III'' was announced, but the remake of ''IV'' disappeared and the US release along with it.

Sega's continued to make games in the ''Phantasy Star'' series, but they've largely taken place in entirely new settings with only tenuous connections to the Algol System... well, apart from the fact that Dark Force just can't seem to leave the universe alone. For more information on the sub-series that came after the tetralogy, see ''VideoGame/PhantasyStarOnline'', ''VideoGame/PhantasyStarUniverse'', and ''VideoGame/PhantasyStarZero''.

All four games from the original series are available on ''Sonic's Ultimate Genesis Collection'' for the Xbox 360 and [=PlayStation=] 3, though the first installment (because it isn't a Genesis game) must be unlocked, which isn't that hard to do.[[note]]Defeat the first boss of ''VideoGame/SonicTheHedgehog2'' in two-player mode.[[/note]] As of 3 May 2012, the original versions of ''Phantasy Star II'', ''III'', and ''IV'' for Sega Genesis can also be purchased and played on PC via UsefulNotes/{{Steam}}.
[[AC:The ''Phantasy Star'' series includes:]]
* ''VideoGame/PhantasyStarI''
* ''VideoGame/PhantasyStarII: At the End of the Lost Age''
** ''Phantasy Star II Text Adventures''
** ''Phantasy Star Gaiden''
** ''Phantasy Star Adventure''
* ''VideoGame/PhantasyStarIII: Generations of Doom''
* ''VideoGame/PhantasyStarIV: End of the Millenium''
* ''VideoGame/PhantasyStarOnline''
** ''Phantasy Star Online Episodes I and II''
** ''Phantasy Star Online Episode III: C.A.R.D. Revolution''
** ''Phantasy Star Online Blue Burst''
* ''Phantasy Star [[VideoGameRemake Generation 1]]''
* ''Phantasy Star [[VideoGameRemake Generation 2]]''
* ''VideoGame/PhantasyStarUniverse''
** ''Phantasy Star Universe: Ambition of the Illuminus''
* ''[[VideoGame/PhantasyStarUniverse Phantasy Star Portable]]''
** ''Phantasy Star Portable 2''
*** ''Phantasy Star Portable 2 infinity''
* ''VideoGame/PhantasyStarZero''
* ''VideoGame/PhantasyStarOnline2''
** ''VideoGame/PhantasyStarOnline2es''
* ''VideoGame/PhantasyStarNova''

%%Please add any examples relating to the blue-linked sub-series to their dedicated pages.
!!The series provides examples of:
* ActionGirl: From Alis in the first game, to Nei, Rika, and Alys in the sequels.
* AIIsACrapshoot: Throughout the original tetralogy, this is averted and subverted. If a robot or AI is causing problems, then it's either because the AI was given faulty or incomplete orders, the situation has changed over a thousand years and the original orders are no longer relevant, or [[spoiler: it was designed and programmed by the enemy to begin with]].
* [[EarthIsTheCenterOfTheUniverse Algol Is the Center of the Universe]]: Thoroughly [[JustifiedTrope justified]] in ''PSIV'', as it's revealed that [[spoiler:the entire star system and all that live in it were originally created by the Great Light to imprison the Profound Darkness]].
* ALongTimeAgoInAGalaxyFarFarAway: Inverted. Though the tetralogy's set primarily in the Algol star system, seemingly in its own universe, Algol is actually a [[http://www.phantasy-star.net/art/algol2.jpg real-life star system,]] its name is Arabic for "demon star." [[MeaningfulName Now, think back to the plot in]] ''IV'' ....
** Additionally, although obliquely, hinted at in ''I'', it's confirmed in ''II'' that [[spoiler:Earth does exist]] within a far future context, as its race tries to conquer Algol to colonize it for resources and living space.
* AnyoneCanDie: This series is not even slightly shy about killing off its main characters. ''PSIV'''s WhamEpisode had [[spoiler:Alys dying from the effects of the Black Wave]]. ''PSIII'' never killed anyone in the active party, but was absolutely murderous to the heroes of the first and second generations. And [[KillEmAll then there was]] ''PSII''.
* ArtEvolution: ''PSII'', the {{Gaiden Game}}s, and ''PSIV'' opted for a cel-drawn art style for {{cutscene}}s that was evocative of [[TheEighties late '80s]] and [[TheNineties early '90s]] anime. ''PSI'' and ''PSIII'' have a different (but still {{animesque}}) style. ''Generation 1'' and ''2'' sport their own cel-shaded style as well, distinct from the original ''PSII'' and ''PSIV''.
* ArtificialHuman: The Numans: Neifirst, Nei, and Rika.
** The android/cyborgs of III and IV probably count as well. And then there's [[spoiler:Seth]] in ''IV''.
* AwesomeMcCoolname: The Japanese versions have some ''seriously'' WTH-worthy choices for character names. For just a small sampling throughout the series: Rolf was "Eusis", Rhys was "Kein Sa Riik", Crys was "'''Noin'''", and Kyra was "Shess".
* BecomeARealBoy: Nearly all robots in the quadrilogy avert this. Even if they're RidiculouslyHumanRobots who have emotions and act like people, they're ultimately tools created to serve a purpose, not human beings. Their ''modus operandi'' when they lack masters is to continue in their final mission until it becomes completely impossible or irrelevant, then [[DrivenToSuicide shut down permanently]].
* CantDropTheHero: Rolf in ''II''. ''I'' and ''III'' don't have enough characters per party to use this trope, while ''IV'' selects your party for you up until the end, and then, you only get to choose one OptionalPartyMember to take along with the four required ones.
* CharacterNameLimits: Four letters max.
* ClarkesThirdLaw: Throughout the series, the explanations for the games' equivalent of magic, "Techniques", has differed. For instance, the manual for ''VideoGame/PhantasyStarII'' describes the fire Technique "Foi" as compressing oxygen into a small space until the molecules ignite and create a fireball, suggesting they are technological or psychic in nature. Meanwhile, ''VideoGame/PhantasyStarUniverse'' describes [[SpellMyNameWithAnS TECHNICs]] and their melee equivalent, Photon Arts, as computer programs uploaded to weapons on discs.
* CompilationRerelease: No shortage of these with the original series. The UsefulNotes/SegaSaturn and UsefulNotes/PlayStation2 both offered collections which combined all four original games into one package, the UsefulNotes/GameBoyAdvance offered one which combined the first three, and compilations of Genesis games tend to contain at least the three for that system (the collection for the [=PlayStation=] 3 and Xbox 360 contains all four, albeit requiring the first to be unlocked).
* ConLang[=/=]SpellLevels: Techniques from ''PSII'' onwards. The base spells (such as "Foie" or "Resta") are augmented with prefixes, with "Gi" and "Na" strengthening them and "Sa" making them target multiple subjects. This is much less obvious in the English translations with their five-letter limit.
* CuteMonsterGirl: Nei and Rika, Numans in general.
* DarkerAndEdgier: Compared to many [[EasternRPG JRPGs]] of the period, the series was far darker and far less willing to [[PlayerPunch pull its punches]]. The first game ''started out'' with the heroine's brother being casually murdered by government agents, and the second through the fourth established that not only [[AnyoneCanDie can anyone die]], but that important characters ''will'' die and that your actions and failures ''will'' have consequences even if you succeed.
* DeadCharacterWalking: Can be done in ''VideoGame/PhantasyStarII'' game. First, kill off everyone except [[SpoonyBard Shir]], then enter a shop repeatedly until she steals something and leaves the party. You'll now be able to walk around with an all-dead party, though the second you get into an encounter, you'll die immediately.
* DevilInDisguise: In ''UsefulNotes/PhantasyStarIV'', you are accompanied for the span of one dungeon by [[spoiler:an adventurer named Seth]]. While his name doesn't really say anything of what he really is, using the Talk command from the menu gives subtle hints, and his abilities (most, if not all of which were used in previous fights by [[spoiler: Dark Force]]) are almost a dead give away if you are paying attention. [[spoiler:"Seth" is also the name of the ancient Egyptian god of darkness.]]
* {{Dropped A Bridge On H|im}}er: [[spoiler:Alys]].
* DualWielding: Possible with every character, starting with ''PSII'', and highly encouraged when it's not more effective to use a two-handed weapon. You can even dual-wield ''shields'' if you need to beef up a magic user's defense.
* EldritchAbomination: Dark Force in all the games. [[spoiler:The Profound Darkness in ''PSIV'' and ''[=PSO2=]'', even more so.]]
* {{Expy}}: There's a reason why Numans seem [[{{Catgirl}} catgirlish]]; Nei was deliberately meant to carry on Myau's legacy. During development, she even had a musk cat's tail. Rika was ''originally'' meant to be Nei herself, as was said by Tohoru Yoshida in an interview; conflict within the staff compelled him to make subtle alterations to keep Rika in.
** In fact, the four main characters of ''PSIV'' are, in a sense, [[FridgeBrilliance representative of the games of the tetralogy]]. Rune Walsh [[spoiler:given his identity as the fifth-generation Lutz]] represents ''PSI''. Rika, originally meant to be Nei, represents ''PSII''. Wren represents ''PSIII'', as another android of the same model was part of the main cast in that game. Chaz himself represents ''PSIV''.
* FightingAShadow: [[spoiler:Dark Force's relationship to the Profound Darkness--especially true in ''PSIV''. Lassic also has a "shadow" fought partway through his castle in ''PSI.'']]
* GenreShift: The jump from classic console RPG to [[MassivelyMultiplayerOnlineRolePlayingGame MMO]] ActionRPG between ''Phantasy Star IV'' and the later sub-series, as well as the side-story text-based adventure games like Phantasy Star Adventure.
* GlobalCurrency: Meseta, which is more of an interplanetary currency. One of the mainstay concepts of the series, even after the tetralogy.
* HijackedByGanon: Dark Force/Falz has a nasty habit of appearing in nigh every game in some way, shape or form. [[spoiler:The Profound Darkness gets a turn at hijacking in ''[=PSO2=]'' as well.]]
* HollywoodSilencer: On a laser gun, no less.
* HyperspaceArsenal: As with most [=RPGs=]' inventory systems.
* LegoGenetics: Numans are humanoids comprised of human, monster, and animal DNA.
* LighterAndSofter: The series has gradually gotten significantly less dark as more entries have been added, which started from ''Universe''. ''Nova'' is an exception, as it's a DarkerAndEdgier counterpart to ''Online 2'' that attempts to invoke the feel of ''Online''.
* LuckilyMyShieldWillProtectMe: Men get traditional shields, while women instead wear emels -- basically thick gauntlets. Unfortunately, in a franchise which offers higher rewards for DualWielding, these are largely useless except on your {{Squishy Wizard}}s.
* MagicKnight: Alis, Rolf, Chaz, and every third-generation protagonist in ''[=PSIII=]''.
* ManaPotion: Many games use Fluids as the magic restoring item. [[AvertedTrope Dropped completely]] from ''Portable 2'' onwards, as the Tech Points system was replaced with the Photon Points system, which serves the same functions, but has a much lower cap and regenerates automatically.
* MasterComputer: Mother Brain in ''PSII.'' [[spoiler:She's got a "daughter" named [[EveryoneCallsHimBarkeep Daughter]] in ''PSIV''.]]
* TheMedic: Amy and Raja are the best examples, and several ''PSIII'' characters can be turned into this with proper tech distribution.
* NintendoHard: All four games of the tetralogy, although ''PSII'' is the most punishing, even with LevelGrinding.
* OminousFloatingCastle: Lassic/La Shiec's castle in ''PSI'', Skyhaven and Lashute in ''PSIII''.
* PhantasySpelling
* PlotlineDeath: [[spoiler:Tiem and Nei in ''PSII''. Alys in ''PSIV''.]]
%%* RedundantResearcher: Subverted.
* RequiredPartyMember: Nei insists on joining Rolf for the first third of ''PSII''. In ''PSIV'', there are even ''less'' options on who to take, as the party makeup is often entirely decided by the plot. Even prior to the final dungeon, four characters in the five-man party are required.
* RobotGirl: Mieu and Miun in ''PSIII'', Demi in ''PSIV''.
* ScienceFantasy: The setting is more or less sci-fi, but magic is commonplace in ''PSI'' and continues to exist in the games set afterwards (though its role is mainly taken over by [[PsychicPowers Techniques]]).
* SeriesMascot:
** Rappies, [[RidiculouslyCuteCritter little fat fluffy yellow birds]]. It wasn't until ''PSO'' that they started to fill this role; it's more pronounced in the later games. They also appear in ''PSIII'' by the name "Chirper."
** The [[TalkingAnimal musk cats]] were basically this for the original tetralogy.
* ShoutOut:
** In ''PSII Text Adventures''. Shir's quest involves stealing the [[VideoGame/FantasyZone Opa Opa]], a famous treasure.
** Some of the books Chaz finds on bookshelves in ''PSIV'' also reference other Sega franchises, like ''Franchise/SonicTheHedgehog''.
* SingleBiomePlanet
** CrystalSpiresAndTogas: [[spoiler:Rykros]].
** GhibliHills: Palma [[spoiler:before its destruction]], and Landen, Draconia, Elysium, and Terminus on the Alisa III... before you factor in their sci-fi elements, of course. Motavia in ''PSII'', due to terraforming.
** ShiftingSandLand: Motavia started out as this, and is regressing back toward it [[spoiler:after Mother Brain's destruction]]. Also Aridia on the Alisa III.
** SlippySlideyIceWorld: Dezoris, along with Frigidia and briefly Aquatica until Rhys fixes it.
* SortingAlgorithmOfWeaponEffectiveness: Subverted in ''PSII''. Dezo sells Laconia Daggers for 18,400 meseta, and only Shir can equip them. You'd think they'd be her ultimate weapon... but it only boosts her damage by 4. That's even less than the ''Scalpel''.
** ''Generation 2'' plays it straight, thankfully. They've been heavily buffed into being Shir's best weapon.
* SpellMyNameWithAnS: Localization teams lacked consistency with translations; as an example, the name of the Algo/Algol System's planets (as well as the system itself, as noted here) have ''plenty'' of variations on their names (Palma/Parma/Palm/Parm, Motavia/Motabia/Mota, Dezoris/Dezolis/Dezo).
* SquishyWizard: Noah in ''PSI''; Hugh and Amy in ''PSII''; Hahn, Rune, and Raja in ''PSIV''.
* StickyFingers: Shir, ''PSII'''s resident thief, has a chance of stealing something from every item, weapon, or armor store that the party walks into and taking it back to Rolf's home in Paseo. [[FridgeLogic This includes any stores on Dezoris]], [[ScrappyMechanic which is extremely counter-productive given the circumstance]].
** Allowing Shir to steal something from Motavia's Central Command station nets you a visiphone that allows you to save your game anywhere (through the use item command), but she has to be over level 10 to do it.
* SwordOfPlotAdvancement: Nei Sword in ''PSII'', Orakio's Sword in ''PSIII'', Elsydeon in ''PSIV''.
* TalkingAnimal: Myau, and all other musk cats.
* TraumaInn: Averted in the first two games, where you actually visit hospitals to heal your characters and churches/clone labs to resurrect them.
* {{Unobtainium}}: Laconia, a specific mineral found in the Algol star system (typically on Dezoris) which is among the hardest known to man. Your party's best gear will typically include several pieces crafted from it.
** It should be noted that Laconia ''itself'' isn't rare, but the knowledge of how to refine it doesn't get spread around. In ''IV'', several stores sell "Silver" weapons and armor, which one of the shop residents explains ''is'' Laconia, but a low-grade form of it because out of outdated processing techniques.
* UndergroundMonkey: Like other console [=RPGs=], the creatures and enemies found in the tetralogy have lots of cousins, many of them {{Palette Swap}}s.
* ViciousCycle: Dark Force is slated to arrive every millennium to destroy the world.
** Until [[spoiler:a space station slams into Palma in ''PSII'', destroying it, and thus weakening the seal, allowing not one but ''three'' separate versions of Dark Force to slip into their dimension during ''PSIV'']].
* WhenTreesAttack: The trees surrounding Garubrek Tower in ''PSIV'' are carnivorous. There are also a few biomonsters in ''PSII'' that appear to be trees, too.
* YouGottaHaveBlueHair: In addition to blue, purple, and pink, the series has some of the most impossible hair colors ever. To this day, very few video games and anime use a color best described as "electric laser limeade" for hair even once, let alone ''five'' times.