I have some idea of what the roadmap might possibly look like.
One thing that many people seem to overlook is the fact that the game's currently still considered to be in an Open Beta state. Yes it receives updates but the game hasn't officially launched. I believe the random factor that is the Open Beta (it can last for as long as bugs and other issues keep popping up) is one reason we don't know any idea on what's to come... any plans Sega would have may not be in terms of any specific dates but rather a "this many months after official launch" sort of scenario.
OPEN BETA CONTENT
Kinda hard to describe but i'll try my best. Many players are complaining about a lack of content in the game's Open Beta... while some attribute this to a repeat of PSU's case I do see something else. I personally think the issue here is that the current content available is the current content the game will need to have for its official FULL launch and when PC releases (more on that later). So on one hand, the only updates we might get during Open Beta are the different outfits and such and maybe some rotation of UQs, but true major content updates may not come until AFTER the game's "Officially" no longer in Open Beta.
OPEN BETA BUG FIXES
I do not wish to come off as blindly optimistic, but I do think there hasn't been much evidence AGAINST the issues reported during Open Beta NOT being fixed. I think that behind the scenes, many of the issues plaguing the Open Beta are being looked into... and the fixes are being implemented into the "Launch" client.
LAUNCH AND PC VERSION
Assuming things are going smoothly with whatever issues needed to be addressed in Open Beta, we can expect to see the game's launch either late April or early May. This may be followed up by the PC version's release on the same day... why do I think that? Well (mind you, these reasons are very speculative)...
- Long ago, Sega clarified that the PC version's planned to come out during "Spring 2020" which is also when the game's full launch is expected to be. Mind you... Spring (in business terms) is between April and June so lets look at another point.
- The Twitter made sure that the general idea was that the game would be coming out on Xbox One first... the Open Beta is far from the game's full launch, but it is an official public launch to the point that on this very site, Xbox One is the only platform listed without "Coming Soon" underneath it. So the game's technically out already on Xbox One, just in a "Open Beta" state.
- One personal reason why I think the game hasn't even been released on PC is due to the fact that the Xbox One version needs to no longer be in Beta prior to full launch. I would consider this a bit of an inverse on how platform betas are handled on the Japanese version, PS Vita and PS4 Betas were done on isolated servers which were eventually merged into the public servers once the Beta period was over... in this case the difference is that the PC version isn't active yet.
More evidence popped up of the game having a Steam release, I personally believe the game may launch simultaneously on the Microsoft Store and Steam. What little we know of the PC version seems to indicate that it would be similar to JP's PC version complete with a game launcher used for options and updates. Given how similar online games with their own launchers and updates are handled (TERA, Final Fantasy XIV), Microsoft Store and Steam would be nothing more than just a distribution platform that installs the base game and launcher. This does also mean that there may not be much in terms of Steamworks integration or things like Achievements in order to keep both PC clients as identical as possible.
FULL LAUNCH CONTENT
Like I previously stated, the launch content may not be too different from the content currently available in Open Beta. Gating content serves not only the purpose of easing localization timelines but is also one of the things Sega's doing to make the game more accessible to new players. Given the new wave of new players that would be coming when the PC version launches, it only makes sense that both be on similar stages in terms of updates.
That said, we can certainly expect some content that wasn't available in the Open Beta such as Crafting or the Challenge and Battle Modes (hinted at here: https://pso2.com/manual/menu/quickmenu with the mention of "Universal Ships" which are the Shared Ships used in Japan for Battle and Challenge Mode) and late into the game's initial release (some months before the next Episode update) we may see Episode 3 UQs become active.
Several months (2-4) after the game's no longer in Beta and the PC version launches, Episode 4 content will be available.
I think we will be getting both Episode 5 and 6 at once. At launch we have the Oracle Saga available initially consisting of Episode 1-3. Episode 4 makes up the standalone "Earth Saga" and as previously mentioned, might be released all on its own. However, Episode 5 and 6 make up an entire saga known as the "Photoner Saga".
Given the patterns:
- Sega didn't mind releasing the game with a whole saga making up its launch content.
- The NA version does not have us waiting for individual story chapters to be released over time, rather all at once...
- Episode 6's coming to an end around Summer in JP, therefore it would be able to be releasing in NA "all at once".
I do think we may have the full "Photoner Saga" released at once. I do especially believe this might be teh case due to Sega's demonstration that they are willing to streamline / work around things that didn't work such as them removing Old Type Weapons entirely. Episode 5 was quite unpopular to the point that its original roadmap, planned story direction and content was abandoned halfway through in favour of transitioning the game to Episode 6. As a result there really isn't that much content that Episode 5 could offer to begin with aside from Buster Quests and Dark Blast (Scion Classes, ill get to eventually).
As a result, we may see content from Episode 5 and 6 available at the same time and both theirs story released at once (though much like with the story mode, you have to complete Episode 5 first before you can play Episode 6... this is the SAME in the JP version).
In terms of UQ schedule, I think much like how we currently have Episode 1-3 available but most UQs are from Episode 1 or 2 with us maybe getting Episode 3 UQs late into release prior to the release of Episode 4, the first two/four months might consist of Episode 5 UQs before eventually having Episode 6 UQs.
Or as many JP players may know it as, "Successor Classes". Much like NA version has all the basic and advanced classes available at once, I think the NA version may not see a gradual release of "Scion Classes" but rather a batch update... literally a post on the front page of the website "SCION CLASSES ARE ARE HERE, READ ALL BOUT EM!".
Now this could get messy... the availability of Summoner does show that Sega doesn't need to go in chronological order to release classes so... Scion Classes could very well release in Episode 4.
Now, I do think the situation with Scion Classes MIGHT be a similar situation to Episode 6... we are getting a new Scion Class in the JP version so we might not get Scion Classes in the JP version until that new Scion Class is released so that it could be included with the 'batch of Scion Classes' available to the NA version.
Wew, thats all I got for now, tell me what you all think! xD