Part I: "You can't return again!"
After Mother Brain has been defeated at the end of Phantasy Star II, and Rolf and friends prepare to head back home, Lutz's voice fills everyone's heart with the words, "Rolf wait! There's still somebody in the ship! You can't return again!"
This is the most misinterpreted line in the entire series.
Many phanatics interpret this line to mean that whatever the outcome of this next battle with the Earthmen, Rolf and his friends are never again able to leave the space ship Noah, that they are stuck there forever. If this is indeed the case, then this means:
And most importantly of all...
- Rolf's Neisword, which all along has been able to teleport the group from Noah back to Esper Mansion, one hundred, one thousand, one million times, if need be, all of a sudden just stops working!
- Lutz, who is able to teleport a group of three people -- three people, keep in mind, that it is possible he has never even met -- from Rolf's house on Mota, to all the way outside of the star system, to the space ship Noah, is powerless to teleport them a shorter distance, from Noah to Esper Mansion.
- If what Lutz means is that Rolf and his friends are trapped on Noah forever, then that means that he sends three more people to their doom aboard the starship! "Rolf needs help! Of course, the catch is that you'll never ever be able to return to your friends and families again, but so long! Go directly to Noah, do not pass Go, do not collect 200 meseta! I curse thee to the same fate as Rolf!"
Rolf and friends were not, literally, unable to ever return from Noah. All Lutz was saying, in essence, was that since they had come so far already, to come home now, without investigating this final piece of the puzzle, would be inconceiveable. I find the idea that Rolf and the others are trapped on Noah to be absolutely ridiculous. Considering the three facts above, isn't it much more logical that Lutz was simply using a figure of speech?
Part II: Rolf and friends' fate
The quest is complete, and the words "I wonder what the people will see in the final days?" scroll onto the screen.
"Yeah, I do, too...," millions of frustrated gamers shout, "but I also wonder what the hell happened to Rolf!"
It is a question that gamers have asked ever since Phantasy Star II's initial American release, when the world first laid eyes on English Phantasy Star II's cliffhanger, "resolve nothing" ending. The Japanese gaming community is not stuck with this problem; they know how Japanese Phantasy Star II ends. The entry for AW 1284 (the date of Japanese Phantasy Star II) on the Phantasy Star Chronological Table in the Phantasy Star Official Production Compendium reads, "Eusis and company defeat Dark Force, Mother Brain, and the Earthmen race, but what happened after that is unknown." (English translation of the Compendium text courtesy of Rebecca Capowski's English Phantasy Star Compendium Translation.)
We are left knowing that Eusis and company were successful in defeating the Earthmen, however, as the English and Japanese Phantasy Star continuities are not in 100% agreement with one another (see the Introduction to the Theories), we are still left in the dark as to Rolf and his friends -- did they acheive victory, as Eusis did, or did they meet their maker?
Though the English and Japanese Phantasy Star continuities rarely agree, in this case, I believe they do. Just as Eusis and his party defeat the Earthmen, so also do I believe that Rolf and his companions survived their trip to the space ship Noah. Further, I believe this can be proven to be all but fact based solely on the abilities that Lutz demonstrates in the game itself.
The chief criticism one might make of this proof is that if Lutz is indeed capable of bringing Rolf and his friends back to life, why does he not do so if the heroes fall in battle against Dark Force and/or Mother Brain? The simple answer is, How do we know he doesn't? The game ends the moment all four party members are killed, and so the player is never shown what happens next if the group is killed in battle with Mother Brain. But judging from the power Lutz demonstrates, it is completely factual that he can resurrect the party from the dead while they are aboard Noah. If one is to argue that Lutz does not resurrect all four members of the party if they are killed by Dark Force or Mother Brain, the burden of proof is theirs, for Lutz's clearly demonstrable powers in the game show that he is indeed capable of such a feat.
- Consider the arguments made in Part I above. Lutz is capable of using his power to teleport three people he perhaps has never even met from Rolf's house on Mota across the star system to a space ship Lutz has apparently never himself been aboard. Since this is pure fact that is demonstrated in the game, why is it so far-fetched to assume that if Rolf and his friends became weak in their battle with the Earthmen, Lutz would not also teleport them back to Esper Mansion if they were in danger of death at the hands of the Earthmen?
- Lutz is capable of healing the party as often as he has to. Anytime Rolf says he is not yet ready to go to the space ship Noah, Lutz sends Rolf on his way after healing him and his friends. This fact, combined with the above, proves Lutz could teleport the party back to Esper Mansion, heal them, and then return them to Noah again and again, if required.
- And what if Lutz is not fast enough to teleport the party home for healing? If only one member of Rolf's party survives the battle with Mother Brain, the player gets to see that Lutz resurrects the fallen members of the party, proving that he is capable of bringing dead members of the party back to life even while they are on the distant space ship and he is at Esper Mansion.
One more bit of information factors into my opinion on this matter. Ironically, it is a quote not from Phantasy Star II, but from Phantasy Star IV. In that game, Rune says, "The first generation of Lutz stored the Aero-Prism in the Soldiers' Temple!" Knowing the Aero-Prism was stored in Soldier's Temple sometime prior to Phantasy Star IV, we then reflect back on the last time we saw the Aero-Prism: it was in the possession of Rolf, aboard the space ship Noah! Therefore, it somehow got back to Esper Mansion and back into the possession of Lutz sometime after Phantasy Star II, and the simplest, easiest explanation for how this could have occurred is: Rolf and his friends brought it back from Noah with them.
I will be the first to admit that having Rolf and his friends nobly sacrifice themselves to the creators of Mother Brain certainly fits into the theme of despair prevelant throughout Phantasy Star II. I'll admit that having Rolf and his friends die makes Phantasy Star II truly the "Empire Strikes Back of Phantasy Star," if you will; the game in which, to be blunt, the good guys get their asses kicked.
However, to me, Phantasy Star as a whole is the story of how good will always triumph over evil, no matter what the cost, no matter how slim the odds. And one must admit, seven versus several hundred are pretty slim odds. However, Rolf has a secret weapon on his side in the form of Lutz, and based on the power Lutz demonstrates in the game, the real question becomes, "How couldn't Rolf and his friends have survived?" Because the actual end of the battle is never shown in Phantasy Star II or unquestioningly revealed in any other entry in the series, the fate of Rolf and his friends will always remain open to speculation. However, the burden of proof in this matter must fall upon those who feel Rolf and his friends did not survive. They have a much harder case to make than do those of us who feel Rolf and his friends were victorious.
Part III: What was that... a UFO?!
Anyone who has defeated Phantasy Star II has seen it, but very few have been able to answer the question of just what the hell it is. I refer, of course, to that... something... that flashes across the game screen, right after the final "Presented by Sega" and "The End" credits. Well, here it is:
Note that "the object" moves away from Dezoris, and thus, away from the center of the system (the sun rises behind Dezoris). This rules out the oft-presented ideas that "the object" is the space ship Noah, either heading away from Algo, or heading for a crash landing into Algo. Based on the direction "the object" travels in, it is something that is in Algo heading outward.
Oh yes, and didn't some 400 objects head out of Algo during the Phantasy Star II era...?
Phantasy Star II was released in Japan on March 21, 1989. Phantasy Star III was released in Japan on April 21, 1990. Being released only some 13 months apart, it stands to reason that Phantasy Star III was, at the very least, in the early stages of development at the time of the release of Phantasy Star II. Could Phantasy Star II's designers have placed "the object" -- one of the 400 Algoian world ships that fled Palm -- into the ending of Phantasy Star II as a way to foreshadow the next chapter in the saga?
Note that "the object" consists of five interlocked shapes. Now, look at the layout of the Alisa III:
I do not believe that "the object" is the one and only Alisa III, however, using that as an example, look at "the object" as if it were a world ship laying "flat" (as "flat" as space can be). The left-most shape of "the object" is then Elysium. The next shape is Frigidia, blocking the view of Landen. The next shape, the center one, is Aridia. The fourth shape is Terminus, blocking the view of Aquatica. The final shape is Draconia.
Even if "the object" was not deliberately inserted into Phantasy Star II as foreshadowing of the plot of Phantasy Star III, considering its shape, the direction it travels in, and the point of the game in which it appears, my personal opinion on "the object" will always be that it is one of the Palman world ships, joining its 399 brothers in the exodus out of the system the system the Palmans had called home.
Other Theory Pages
The Two Phantasy Stars |
Separate But Equal
Phantasy Star II's Date |
Noah and Lutz
Character Birthdays |
Phantasy Star II's Ending |
Fate of the Worldships |
Phantasy Star Online Numans |
Phantasy Star Online's Date
Ragol is Not Earth |
Why the Earthmen Truly Are Evil |
The Whole New World
On the Characters and Story of Phantasy Star I |
Phantasy Star and the Raglan Scale
The True Message of Phantasy Star II