The first game in the Star Ocean series, Star Ocean was originally released for the Super Famicom; that version was never ported to the West, though Fan Translations exist. Square Enixremade this game for the PSP; this remake, subtitled First Departure, was released in the US and UK in October 2008. It tells the tale of a young boy named Ratix Farrence from the planet Roak (most of whose inhabitants have tails and pointed ears, though there are other races) whose world is under threat from a horrible disease that makes those who catch it turn to stone. Seems like standard fantasy fare, until Captain Ronyx J. Kenny and his Number One Ilia Silvestri from the Terran Alliance beam down to the planet to investigate. The stone disease is much more than what it seems, not just for Roak but other planets as well....
This game provides examples of:
Abandoned Mine: An optional area hidden in Mt. Metox is an abandoned mine filled with super-tough enemies and high value loot.
Alien Blood: A major plot point in Star Ocean is that Fellpool blood is copper-based. You'd think this would make them have blueish skin, but all they show for it are their tails. How copper-based blood is supposed to make things invisible is anyone's guess.
Though Fellpool blood, like Vulcan copper-based blood, is actually green anyway.
Attractive Bent-Gender: Millie and Pericci try to invoke this on Ioshua, but he runs away before they can give him a makeover. They mention their disappointment, as they believe he would look gorgeous in women's clothing.
Bishōnen: Some of the male cast, but especially Ioshua, even ingame characters said he is pretty.
Cat People: Fellpool, Lesser Fellpool, and Highlanders; more so with the Lesser Fellpool with their cat ears and ability to shapeshift into a cat, while the former look like pointy-eared tailed humanoids. Highlanders are based on big cats (tigers in particular) rather than the usual housecats. (Note that in Star Ocean: The Second Story, regular Fellpool, at least the ones on Expel, are portrayed as cat people, with the party member Leon in that game being a cat boy in everything but name.)
The third game' encycopedia reveals Expel's amount of genes being mixed up results in occasional cases of Cat people.
Crutch Character: Ashlay is a textbook Crutch Character. However, the updated remake gives you one utility over recruiting him instead of the much potential-filled Cyuss: He lets you recruit Erys and also lets Roddick gain some better abilities. In the remake, he is still quite viable endgame save for his inability to use shields.
Dual Wielding: Phia only looks like she does this, as her battle sprite dual-wields daggers, but she can equip only one dagger at a time. In fact, she's the only character other than Roddick that can equip shields.
Genius Bruiser: Ilia Silvestri managed to become a maritial arts master while simultaneously getting her PHD by the age of 23.
Giant Space Flea from Nowhere: Revorse seems to come out of nowhere and have little to do with the previous plot in the original version. The remake did a better job of tying him in to the main plot.
Hell, Jie Revorse himself might count. For well over three fourths of the game, Asmodeus is clearly built up to be the Big Bad, but once he's defeated, the plot basically goes "Oh yeah, by the way, there's this evil alien warlord who'[s never been mentioned until now in the present trying to conquer the galaxy. Go stop him."
Gonk: Madam Karner. The way she looks, her pose on the chaise, and how she buys and sells information makes her seem like a female Hutt.
Guide Dang It: The average player may waltz right through the game and miss many characters simply because they choose to accept others. The real title goes to Erys however - an addition to the PSP remake, who requires three other characters recruited while two of them make sense (if you know what their stories are), the third is easily missable and has no connection to these two.
Guys Smash, Girls Shoot: Inverted when it comes to Ronyx and Ilia. Ilia is the martial artist, while Ronyx is both the archer and offensive mage.
Handicapped Badass: Crutch character he may be; Ashley is 50-60 years old and has lost his left arm but can still keep up with the rest of the party and go head to head with some of the nastiest monsters Roak has to offer.
Hard-Drinking Party Girl: It seems odd before playing Star Ocean The Last Hope that Ilia is surprisingly knowledgeable about the local beverages given that she's 300 years in the past on an undeveloped planet, but that game shows that people from Earth knew about Roak at least several years before Asmodeus's defeat and that Earth's humans (including the party in that game) have set foot on it, so she probably just paid an unusual amount of attention to the history of Roak's cuisine in school.
Panthera Awesome: Highlanders are the evolutionary descendants of big cats, unlike their Felpool cousins who evolved from little cats. They are correspondingly larger and more robust.
Petting Zoo People: Fellpools are humanlike in appearance, but have heightened senses and tails like cats.
Peninsula of Power Leveling: The Abandoned Mine in Mt. Metorx, but only for a short while. The first time you can access it any enemy will kill you in one hit. When you are able to handle the enemies there, though, it's only a short time until you move on to more lucrative ones in terms of experience.
Really 700 Years Old: Mavelle is, though in this case, it is just the body since she is actually Erys inside. Welch show up in several Star Ocean games, which are all years apart in the timeline, yet looks all the same anywhere.
Rock Beats Laser: The reason that Ronyx and Ilia recruited the Roakians for the final mission is because Jie Revorse has made himself immune to modern weaponry.
You probably need a guide in order to get Welch, T'nique, Pericci, and Erys. You might be able to run into Welch by yourself as she is the easiest of the characters to recruit.note T'Nique requires you to have six characters in your party by a certain point, then for no discernible reason, run back to an early town. Pericci requires you to do something very early in the game and then backtrack to find her. Erys meanwhile requires you to recruit a specific set of characters, one of which has no relation to her whatsoever.
Ashlay may also count; however to be fair you can discover him by poking around the town he's in, and he does give a very strong hint that he's playable.
Shipper on Deck: Everyone for Ronyx/Ilia. Even Millie, who makes a This and That joke regarding her training of Ronyx in Symbology seemingly to irritate Ilia. She tries to persuade Ilia to reveal her feelings for Ronyx, but Ilia doesn't go through with it. Finally, though, when Ronyx does make his move, everyone's peeping in the jewelry shop until they scatter in a Leave the Two Lovebirds Alone moment. Talking to each of your party members shows how long they waited for the two of them to finally end up together.
Shout-Out: The Cave of The Seven Stars' background music is exactly the same as that in the Seraphic Gate of Valkyrie Profile.
Witch Species: While all three varieties of Felpool require special tattoos to use symbology, Featherfolk have the necessary symbols etched into their very DNA, so most, if not all, are naturally capable of using symbology.