Phantasy Star Ø (pronounced Zero) is a Japanese-style RPG that borrows elements from Phantasy Star Online and Phantasy Star Universe. Core mechanics are typical for RPGs: destroying monsters gains experience and different levels unlocks higher level gear and powers.
Character creation is similar to Phantasy Star Online, the player chooses a race (each with their own strengths), gender and archetype.
The different races include the versatile Humans, powerful, hulking androids called CASTs and nimble but fragile genetically-engineered Newmans. Archetypes are Hunter, Ranger and Forces.
Different races affect the story and in which order the first three zones are tackled. Ultimately all three end identically.
The game features a central hub where the player can shop, store items and find quests in a safe environment.
The game features an off-line mode in which the player can advance through the story, backed up by AI controlled allies. It's also possible to play on-line with friends, random matchmaking or alone. Communication is done through an in-game PictoChat, where players ca draw what they want to communicate. When playing with strangers, there's no free communication and only predefined sentences can be used.