- Adaptation Displacement: The anime series has been licensed for release in the west for winter of 2016. The western release of the game, itself, wouldn't be Saved from Development Hell until three years later when finally announced for Xbox One and PC.
- Americans Hate Tingle: The English-speaking fans despise the anime, citing its Slice of Life elements, lack of meaningful character development, and flimsy plot as reasons why it's so terrible. In Japan? While it was still relatively poor, it at least did enough to increase the playerbase by a noticeable amount.
- Audience-Alienating Premise: The anime. "Ordinary High-School Student is forced to play a popular video game by the school's perfect Student Council President". It sounds rather dull even as far as anime plots go, fans of the game aren't that excited to watch a show where someone plays a game they're already playing, and you need to be up to speed with the game's content to know that there's actually an underlying plot. A Nico Nico Douga poll amongst Japanese picked PSO2: The Animation as the least-anticipated show of the season, and the first episode came off as mediocre at best even to English-speaking fans of the game.
- Anti-Climax Boss: Apprentice is ultimately dealt with in rather mundane fashion. Not only does she pull off an undeniably stupid move that permanently cripples her, she does absolutely nothing for the rest of the finale until she is defeated when Itsuki recovers Rina. The only display of power she had was to worf a squad of AIS. The Darkers do more harm to the protagonists than she does!
- Broken Base: The anime having Slice of Life elements became a huge turn-off for certain parts of the fanbase. The fact that it also takes place on Earth, in Japan, and stars a high school kid and his pals also had English-speaking fans crying "generic" til the cows come home. The fact that it's a Stealth Prequel is even more base-breaking because some believe it makes the anime worth watching for the additional background information, while others believe it degrades the Phantasy Star name even further by linking it to a generic Slice of Life show.
- Continuity Lock-Out: The anime isn't well focused on attracting new viewers/players, but rather those already familiar with the game and its upcoming content. This is prevalent in several areas where they expect the viewer to retain prior knowledge of PSO2 to "get" what happening.
- Ensemble Dark Horse: Kouta and SORO are popular with fans, sometimes even better liked than the main characters themselves. Unfortunately, Kouta gets the short end of the stick in a lot of his appearances, and SORO gets shafted in Episode 5 in favor of RINA, reducing his role down to appearing in the opening and in the final episode.
- Funny Moments: Quest 6 has Koa receiving an invitation to enjoy a soak in the hot springs in-game from Rina, with Koa believing she would do so with her RINA avatar. This is accompanied by a cut-in of Dudu, the infamous item grinder clerk of the game, commenting on his luck. Rina then appears with her SORO avatar, and only soaks for a brief moment. This is accompanied by Dudu commenting on Koa's lack of luck.
- Growing the Beard: If you're willing to muddle through the first six episodes, all of which are generally considered mediocre at best, everything begins picking up extremely quick by Episodes 7 through 9, during which its overall quality also improves immensely.
- Hilarious in Hindsight: In Episode 7, Last Samurai, who last saw Mika Konoe in Quarry Free Field, wonders aloud if PSO2 has the Seiga Academy outfit as an available costume. When the first PSO2: The Animation Blu-Ray/DVD was announced alongside its included Item Codes, guess what costume it came with?
- Les Yay:
- Rina Izumi is stated to have admirers male and female, among them fellow student council member Mika Konoe.
- When Aika Suzuki transfers to Seiga Academy, one female student straight-up asks her for her views on lesbian relationships.
- Memetic Mutation: ゲイExplanation
- So Okay, It's Average: The anime can generally be graded by fans on two different scales: its quality as a Phantasy Star title, and its quality as a Slice of Life title. While the former scale is polarizing, the latter scale can fall squarely into this trope as far as the non-Phantasy Star fans are concerned, if not a tad bit higher.
- Special Effect Failure: The CGI is generally derided for being bad at times. Especially Episode 2's Rockbear, which is very choppily animated.
- They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: A very common complaint from English fans of the game stems from the wasted opportunity to base the anime around, well, the actual game.
- The finale episode is disliked for wrapping things up in a very convenient manner. Itsuki, Aika, and Rina use The Power of Friendship to summon Stargazer, a super-buffed version of Over End that had literally no reason to exist and was never hinted to exist up to that point, to kill Apprentice.
- Viewer Gender Confusion: If you didn't know Shouta Aoi sang the theme song, you could very easily make the mistake that the singer is female.
- What Do You Mean, It Wasn't Made on Drugs?: The anime's ending theme can be rather... unusual for those unfamiliar with the song or the game.
YMMV / Phantasy Star Online 2: The Animation