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Persona 5

Developer / Publisher: Atlus
15 September 2016
Persona 5 - cover art
Glitchwave rating
4.22 / 5.0
0.5
5.0
 
 
2,494 Ratings / 10 Reviews
#33 All-time
#1 for 2016
A student placed under probation in Tokyo in suspicion of assault discovers the ability to steal people's twisted desires with the help of his Persona in the Metaverse, a manifestation of people's collective minds.
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ペルソナ5 20th PS Storeスペシャルエディション
2016 Atlus  
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ペルソナ5 20th PS Storeスペシャルエディション
2016 Atlus  
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2016 Atlus  
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2016 Atlus  
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2017 Atlus  
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CA 7 30865 02011 9 CUSA-05877
2017 Atlus P-Studio  
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2017 Atlus P-Studio  
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2017 Atlus P-Studio  
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US 7 30865 02010 2 CUSA-05877
Persona 5 SteelBook Edition
2017 Atlus P-Studio  
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CA 7 30865 02009 6 CUSA-05877
Persona 5 SteelBook Edition
2017 Atlus P-Studio  
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2017 Atlus P-Studio  
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IT 4 020628 822002 CUSA-06638
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XNA 7 30865 00154 5
Persona 5 SteelBook Edition
2017 Atlus P-Studio  
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US 7 30865 02006 5 CUSA-05877
Persona 5 Royal Steelbook Edition
2020 Atlus  
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IT 5 055277 036967 CUSA-17419
2020 P-Studio Atlus  
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GB 5 055277 036875 CUSA-17419
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Persona 5 Royal Steelbook Launch Edition
2020 P-Studio Atlus  
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2020 P-Studio Atlus  
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Title
That's cool Joker, I guess...
A case study in style over substance, not helped by a grating localization. Doesn't know what to do with its themes of oppression or societal pressure, and is muddled as a result.
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Big_Honk 2021-05-10T16:38:13Z
2021-05-10T16:38:13Z
3.0
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Fantastic game with a lot to criticize
If you've played this game or dropped out after sinking an unbelievable amount of time and couldn't handle it anymore you're not wrong for doing so. This game has so much useless dialogue, time wasting animations, and flirts with really dark themes but doesn't fully commit to them. Yet, it's one of the best games I've had the joy to play. When the credits finally rolled, I was so happy it was over, but sad I would likely never pick it up again.
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fedcoshark 2023-02-01T13:16:51Z
2023-02-01T13:16:51Z
4.5
1
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This review does a better job than I ever could explaining it: https://www.reddit.com/r/p...it_so_glad_its/
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Favourite game of all time
Unbelievably enjoyable story. I can personally barely handle visual media of any form for longer than a couple hours at a time, so the fact that I was not ever bored in this 130 hour masterpiece says a lot. Highly recommend!
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Stylishly stealing society's sins
(written may 6, 2017)

Alongside the popcorn campaigns of FPS games, Persona 5 is a modern epic; a 100 hour package of thievery, drama, friendship, and politics, wrapped tightly in deep RPG battles and rich character interaction. It’s an intimidating beast of a title, but a joy to tackle and bite into.

From the menu alone, Persona 5 boldly boasts style. Shortly after the release of Atlus’ adult-oriented puzzle game, Catherine, the development team called it a “test” for the next Persona game. We can say they’ve passed; Persona 5 has fine-tuned the pop aesthetics, cozy atmosphere, and cel-shading-so-rich-you-could-almost-touch-it that Catherine had already mastered. This also marks one of the first times a Japanese game has crafted a near 1:1 similarity between in-engine graphics and 2D animated cutscenes; hell, I find myself preferring the former most of the time.

The story kicks off with the player character, codenamed “Joker”, a high-schooler from the suburbs, now on probation in Shibuya after forcefully stopping a sexual assault. Joker is taken under the custody of Sojiro, who makes it very clear that he’s a hair trigger away from sending Joker back to the police. Joker is enrolled into Shujin Academy, with much hesitation from the school board. It’s very clear that, after rumors of his “criminal past,” no one really likes this kid.

Over time, Joker meets more and more kids his age, such as his classmates at Shujin, Ryuji and Ann. At face value, they’re your average 16-year-olds: trendy, social, always having a phone on hand, and never putting up with adult B.S. But when Joker and his friends enter the dungeons, or “Palaces” materialized from the twisted desires of adults, they transform into the “Phantom Thieves,” and things take a turn for the coolest.

Joker awakens to his Persona differently than characters in Persona 4; rather than defying your Shadow, the parts of yourself you hate, you embrace it. Society sees me as a criminal? Well, they’re getting a goddamn criminal. Joker and friends activate their Personas with ballroom masks; swanky clothes materialize in a flash; these rowdy little scamps start fighting and doing flips like it’s second nature.

Unlike the procedurally generated dungeons of Persona 3 and 4, every dungeon in Persona 5 has been handcrafted, from puzzles to platforms. These dungeons are called Palaces; they are the physical manifestations of a person’s heart, located in a dimension called the Metaverse. From here, the Phantom Thieves steal the Treasures, or the core desires, of their targets, changing the hearts of evil adults one by one.

Joker’s first target in the game is Kamoshida, a gym teacher who abuses, even makes sexual advances on, his students. He treats the school as if he’s “the king of a castle,” Ryuji says, as Joker’s phone picks up the phrase. Such a castle appears in place of the school; now the Phantom Thieves have their location. Joker leaps across chandeliers and columns that exude Kamoshida’s sense of superiority; all the palaces represent their holders through clever design, but their wit is lost a bit once the main characters start explaining every bit of symbolism the moment it comes up.

Palaces are littered with corners and small objects to hide behind. Joker snaps into a shadow, melting into the wall, the enemy none the wiser. There, the player can use one of the best stealth mechanics in a non-stealth game; when the enemy gets close, Joker can initiate an ambush, flipping onto its back and tearing off its mask, entering a battle with whatever Persona awaits.

If the odds are in the Thieves’ favor, they can hold up the enemy. With four guns and a spotlight centered on it, the monster sweats, begging for compromise. Joker can tell it to cough up some money, an item, or it’s power. The latter initiates a conversation; Joker must persuade the Persona based on its personality. If it takes a liking to him, that character is now in Joker’s inventory. Of course, if none of that is enough for the gang, they can always erupt in an all-out attack, dashing by a monster in streaks of sound and light, ending on a suave splash screen.

Persona 5’s intricacies don’t end outside the dungeon, however. When Joker isn’t conquering Palaces, he’s going to school and hanging out with his teammates, with the smoothest smoky-dimly-lit-bar jazz soundtrack. Major and minor characters within the story are “Confidants,” people who, the stronger a relationship they have with Joker, the stronger certain Personas become and the more abilities the Phantom Thieves unlock; but these characters aren’t just EXP fodder.

Character development is done mostly through the moments Joker spends with his Confidants. He must gain the trust of his partners, form a real relationship to unlock their true power within the Metaverse. It’s a beautiful blend of design and makes seeing more of the Shibuya populus believing in the Phantom Thieves have a much stronger impact.

During a mission, Joker will be make his way through the lights of Shibuya or the deep darkness of Palaces, but the player needs to open the menu. They’ll be loudly greeted by the best-looking UI a game has ever had. Hard reds, greys and white against a thick black outline; each word a charming font-Frankenstein; a silhouette of Joker twirls and flips with every selection; a hostage letter met a superhero comic, and their relationship is stunning.

The brilliance of the contrast between the real world and the dimension where these dungeons lie, the Metaverse, is how well the visuals represent it. These delinquents, outcasts in a pop-colored Shibuya, may look quirky, but they have a vogue, rebellious edge to them. Joker and his band contrast reality with their Persona by embracing their Shadows, and it doesn’t come naturally, it’s noisy, it’s wild, but it’s so confident that it works. That is the relationship between Persona 5’s aesthetics and design.

The involvement of technology and Japanese politics in Persona 5 is large enough to write an entire second piece on (wink wink), but there’s so much to chip away here. I alone can’t capture the grandeur and genius of Persona 5; I’ve gone on about it’s incredible RPG gameplay, social interactions and buttery music for too long. I can only say this: games that hold such expansive systems to toy with, making each playthrough a new experience, yet can still engross you in it’s story, characters, and charm, are something to behold. Persona 5 is a large investment of time; one that you’ll sink into like quicksand, marvel at its detail and grace, and finish like saying goodbye to a friend you’ve known for years.
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keublitz 2022-12-10T05:09:48Z
2022-12-10T05:09:48Z
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The gameplay, graphics and system mechanics are the best they've ever been, but the characters and narrative are at their lowest, and they unfortunately comprise a HUGE chunk of your play time. Look, I won't bullshit you: the storylines for these games have always been massively overrated by autistic otaku dweebs, but at least 3 and 4 told a straightforward, well-paced story with a diverse and memorable cast. Save for Morgana (who is way better than Teddy and one of the only characters I had a genuine emotional attachment to), all of the characters in 5 are inferior versions of characters we've had before. I can hardly even remember their names, even though this is the Persona title I've played most recently. Not only do we have a carbon copy of Yosuke from 4 in Ryuji, Adachi makes a return! And his name isn't even that different: Akechi. He's a detective who you think is one of the good guys at first, but then he turns out to be a persona wielding villain! WOW, WHAT A CRAZY TWIST!!!

Let's talk about that story. Remember how all the villains and boss fights in 3 and 4 felt like they were connected to the narrative? Remember how they all seemed to be building toward something? Well, you can forget about that here. I have no fucking clue what relevance any of the bosses had to do with the storyline, and I fail to see how any of them were even remotely connected beyond vague themes of "power" and "oppression." The "big bad" and primary antagonist throughout the plot is your stock standard Lex Luthor Jeff Bezos evil greedy bald guy, and the connection between him and the TRUE big bad is even more tenuous than it has been in past games. It's a crying shame that THIS will be many people's entry into the franchise, because it is in so many ways inferior to the games preceding it. Oh well, at least the OST is pretty good (although if you ask me, NOT as good as the previous two games).
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anon123 2022-09-30T21:31:32Z
2022-09-30T21:31:32Z
3.5
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A charming masquerade that fails to live up to its reputation
Persona 5 (and Persona 5 Royal) are both titles that have successfully wooed audiences into convincing themselves that they actually like jrpgs, through an admittedly beautiful presentation, the skin of Persona 5 hides the most disgusting excuse for a main body of a game that has ever been host to such critical acclaim. Persona 5 constantly betrays its own themes, characters and arguably even its own aesthetic for the purposes of emulating the same "style" that has won the affections of many a player, and fails to hold a mantle to most of its contemporaries, especially those developed and/or published by Atlus themselves.

The most significantly egregious flaw Persona 5 boldly waves in the face of its players its lack of character writing for many members of the cast, even some of its own party members. The tried and true social link method from 3 and 4 returns. but with much less heart and effort than in either of those titles. Each optional/player driven social link is bound by the aesthetic desires of persona 5, all these relationships must serve towards a thief making some sort of "deal" to improve their ability to heist. Which results in an incredibly set of same-y social links. Compared to the diversity of exploration of themes within Persona 5's predecessors, many social links are forced to harp on the same points: any social link with a female character that is not a party member (totalling 5 social links) follows the exact same formula over the ten social events, beginning with the forming of the contract, and a discovery that the given character is a "prodigy" in their field (a dedicated teacher, world class shogi player, etc.). The next few levels provide an insight into their oppression (Hifumi stands out here as being the only character not tormented by a male figure, making her slightly more unique than the other 4). The character's attempts to stand up to this oppression ultimately fail and it is up to the protagonist (during s.link levels 7-8) to solve this problem for them, ultimately leading to the same conclusion over the final couple ranks)
The social link system acted as a unique and interesting way for the modern Persona games to explore their themes in greater detail, while also adding to the cast of their games with a unique set of characters that were not fit for the roles of protagonist/antagonist. This genius circumvention of the JRPG side of Persona's story structure is flagrantly misunderstood and abused in Persona 5's writing.
Within the Royal expansion, the two social links of Akechi and Maruki serve as examples that Persona 5 was not bound to this issue, as they display a level of writing quality closer to Persona 5's predecessors, and explore their characters in ways unique to the plot and their story roles.

Even Persona 5's own main cast of party members aren't safe from the overbearing desire to "look cool" that persona 5 holds. Character developments are often betrayed for the sake of fulfilling the "phantom thief" aesthetic. The most flagrant example of this, being any time Ann is used to overcome a plot obstacle (entering Madarame's house, the pool of Shido's palace) has a comparison of this done right in Rise from Persona 4. Where as Rise's idol performance in Inaba serves as a showing of her appreciation to the party for saving her from the TV World, and provides a unique look into the subtle differences between what being an idol means to Rise and what her character conflict as shown in the TV World is. Ann's objectification after her resolution to stand up against said act (as this is what brought about her Persona awakening) offer no insight into her character as they're played off as a gag, and act as a subtle character assassination as her lack of real opposition implies no real drive in her ideals. Credit where credit is due. Yusuke's social link stands out as one that both explores Persona 5's themes of oppression and identity in a way unique to not only Yusuke, but also noticeably separate from what's explored in his mandatory story section, and serves as a unique reminder of the potential Persona 5 had to be an incredibly well written game alongside its beautiful visuals, soundtrack and good gameplay.

The part that irked me the most about Persona 5's writing after I first played the game in 2016, and especially after playing Royal during 2021/2022, was the way that the theme's of Persona 5 are constantly dragged through the mud by Persona 5 itself. Modern persona stands out as a uniquely thematically driven game, narratively speaking. Persona 3 is very clear in how its story links back to the themes of death, futility and moving on. And Persona 4's truth theme is so prevalent it leaks into half the song titles in the soundtrack. Persona 5 is so dangerously afraid of looking into the ideas of overcoming oppression and identity in a world that seems to keep everyone down that the star of the show becomes a minor and secondary theme of the effects of fame. Persona 5's desperate attachment to the phantom thief aesthetic inevitably links it to the ideas of anonimity in fame, the link between fame and power, and other effects of popularity in the modern era. The game's best and worst conflicts stem from these ideas (the best being Persona 5's original bad ending, and the worst being the Morgana/Ryuji conflict that climaxes/concludes in the Okumura palace). Regardless Persona 5 handles this in a way that ties strongly back into gameplay, Persona 5's first bad ending offers the player a chance to again revel in the fame that is tied to every successful dungeon clear within the title, and overcoming this desire for praise and remembering why the phantom thieves began in the first place is the path that leads to the good ending. This serves as not only Persona 5's strongest piece of writing but also a significantly above par moment even amongst other story-driven titles released in the surrounding time period/in the same thematic ballpark. It's a shame that because these conclude with the ending of the base game Persona 5, that Persona 5 Royal is left straggling for anything to hold on to.
As Persona 5 clung for dear life to the aesthetics that kept it in the public's eye, the inevitable interlinking of the themes lead to all of them reaching some form of conclusion by the end of the game, the good ending has the phantom thieves positing that they would 'live in the real world' regardless of whatever suffering came with it. This, of course, if thrown out the window the second the Royal expansion begins, the game offering a second bad ending in of which you can choose to live in a world of fantasy where everyone is happy directly contradicts the lines which joker nods along to within the conclusion of the original Persona 5. If temptation was given any room to exist in the absolute resistance to oppression that Persona 5 ends on (killing god) then perhaps this could have served as a unique insight into how hard it is to hold onto ideals/identity when a uniquely easy but (to the character) morally incorrect solution is placed right in front of them. However Persona 5, surprisingly, seems not to be written with the patented Atlus expansion in mind, and is forced to retread themes in a way somehow weaker than the original.

My own biases towards the gameplay of Persona 3 Fes aside. Persona 5 is a game that is visually stunning, fun to play (fusion in Persona 5 and Royal is a treat), with a very good soundtrack. However compared to most JRPGs released after the turn of the century (and arguably, ever) Persona 5 has writing and a story that actively detracts from the enjoyment to such an extent that is hard to give this game any praise without feeling disingenuous to what the 80-120 hour JRPG has to offer.
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dezbrymgw 2022-07-12T03:47:11Z
2022-07-12T03:47:11Z
2.0
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Catalog

skuppster Persona 5 2023-02-02T01:23:56Z
PS4
2023-02-02T01:23:56Z
4.5
2
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
BIGDA Persona 5 2023-02-01T14:47:40Z
2023-02-01T14:47:40Z
5.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
fedcoshark Persona 5 2023-02-01T13:16:51Z
2023-02-01T13:16:51Z
4.5
1
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
acdcmetallica Persona 5 Royal 2023-02-01T04:27:54Z
XSX / Xbox One / Windows
2023-02-01T04:27:54Z
5.0
1
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Ninjapenguin121 Persona 5 Royal 2023-02-01T02:53:13Z
XSX / Xbox One / Windows
2023-02-01T02:53:13Z
5.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
chibijean Persona 5 2023-02-01T02:46:26Z
2023-02-01T02:46:26Z
5.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
bernaninha Persona 5 2023-01-31T18:00:44Z
2023-01-31T18:00:44Z
4.5
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
nephilimaggie Persona 5 Royal 2023-01-31T08:17:29Z
PS4 • CA
2023-01-31T08:17:29Z
4.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
kirbypilled Persona 5 Royal 2023-01-31T07:46:32Z
Switch • GB
2023-01-31T07:46:32Z
5.0
1
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
completed in 2023
marcinw321 Persona 5 2023-01-31T06:16:03Z
2023-01-31T06:16:03Z
4.5
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
FoggyFire Persona 5 2023-01-31T05:32:34Z
2023-01-31T05:32:34Z
3.0
1
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Pulsar0 Persona 5 Royal 2023-01-31T03:18:40Z
PS4 • XNA
2023-01-31T03:18:40Z
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Content rating
CERO: C
Player modes
Single-player
Media
1x Blu-ray
Franchises
Also known as
  • ペルソナ5
  • Persona 5 Royal
  • ペルソナ5 ザ・ロイヤル
  • View all [3] Hide

Comments

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Note: Unlike reviews, comments are considered temporary and may be deleted/purged without notice.
  • Previous comments (158) Loading...
  • Convalescence 2023-01-12 17:02:37.160818+00
    finally caught up to the opening flashback sequence, and the plot holes surrounding jokers death are LAUGHABLE. like I still enjoy the whole palace leading up to that, and the cutscenes were dramatic and entertaining, but as soon as the game starts trying to explain whats going on, it completely falls apart. I knew this game had a lot of weak writing but this is almost certainly the worst of it.
    reply
    • Fowlawneeshafow 2023-01-16 03:14:49.316126+00
      first time i've ever heard any accusations that this has weak writing tbh, maybe you're just not into manga/anime inspired stuff
    • Convalescence 2023-01-16 18:20:41.127977+00
      If you scroll through this comment box and read some of the reviews here, I am far from the only one criticizing the writing.
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  • KesiMiao 2023-01-17 23:22:02.126663+00
    Eh that one seemed fine to me except Except with Sae being responsible for overseeing the body and keeping everyone from a supposed rotting corpse but she has a ton of trust within the police force so you could suspend your disbelief
    reply
    • Convalescence 2023-01-23 07:04:10.985991+00
      I honestly just found the whole thing needlessly complicated and difficult to even believe at all. The whole plan is way too reliant on luck and basically writing backwards from the writing room, knowing what outcome you need to reach and rambling on and on explaining and justifying. Feels very elaborate and clever but for me just comes off really cheap and flat and dumb, as does a lot of the writing in this game.

      Still enjoy it nonetheless.
      *shrug*
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  • saintANGRY 2023-01-22 03:46:52.806317+00
    What is everyone's thoughts about this game and Royal being listed under the same title? They were technically released as different games, even though everyone just calls it an upgrade or a definitive re-release?
    reply
    • Convalescence 2023-01-27 09:31:59.306137+00
      Makes sense that they are since it’s functionally the same game and same core experience. I think the same argument would be made for P3 and P4G
    • Convalescence 2023-01-27 09:32:29.02475+00
      Though given how much P5R seems to change, I MASSIVELY regret playing the vanilla version instead
    • tendollars 2023-01-27 21:02:15.148851+00
      glitchwave has always classified enhanced editions as re-releases. unless a game is a remake from the ground-up or part of a compilation
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  • homefires 2023-01-23 18:30:29.36198+00
    Surprised to see how high this is rated on here, considering how shit the writing is. It's also way too long. I liked the game but an average higher than a 4 is insane to me
    reply
    • Convalescence 2023-01-24 00:43:36.123341+00
      I’m certainly not the one to make the case for it, but I can understand it. Anime games get a lot of love here for whatever reason.

      Just finished it and it’s definitely good, but I don’t have the same overwhelming love for it that many have. The style is fantastic but the writing is so goddamn corny. Manga stuff just isn’t for me I guess
    • More replies New replies ) Loading...
  • Convalescence 2023-01-24 10:16:29.824124+00
    Pretty wildly bummed out I sunk 100 hours into the vanilla version when the royal version just seems like a huge improvement on all fronts
    reply
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  • KesiMiao 2023-01-25 03:12:21.360984+00
    People often shit on the writing of this story but maybe because this was one of the most immersive games I have played in years, was so excited to see next story beats and the friendly banter between characters, just couldn't stop and I have low attention with games these days thus being oblivious about the writing quality. But then tons people love the story too soo... Then it means it's doing many things right.
    reply
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  • bulletluckcharm 2023-01-30 19:06:22.197496+00
    Playing Royal and jees this game is yuge. It's got literally everything some gamers want. Pure, turn-based combat... monster collecting... social simulation... even bigu time #1 American basebarr. It is indeed a 100+ hour game but it never feels boring, even with its constant interruptions and seemingly endless dialog detours. Heck you only spend like 15 minutes of the game's first 5 hours in battle.

    Based on other comments the story & dialog isn't for everyone. I think a good rule of thumb is if you don't mind anime's idiosyncrasies, nothing will put you off here. Complaints about localization problems don't make sense-- this is about as fantastic as you can translate such a different language into English. You've got to keep in mind that the differences between Japanese and English are such that the two express ideas in fundamentally different ways. It's not like turning French into English where, for the most part, you can directly convert words. In many ways, Japanese is a less direct language, yet anime's characters will seem very archetypal, exaggerated, and 'forward' by English standards. This often reads as the 'wackiness' or 'corniness' in anime that turns a lot of people off. Whereas in English drama a lot of expression is understated, even with larger-than-life characters, Japaneses anime wears its heart on its sleeve. You know exactly who most characters are right away bc they literally scream it at you.

    I think P5's secret is how it seamlessly goes from one type of game to the other, tying it together with story. Despite how disconnected this would all seem on paper, the game makes every aspect and genre it features integral to the experience. You can't just avoid the social simulation, as it weighs into how the leveling plays out. You can't ignore monster collecting and fusion, or just sit on a basic party and grind to become over-leveled bc of how the story limits your time and forces you to move along. Everything is in constant flux and the crux is how you're managing that change.

    Combat-wise, the game is great not merely bc it's turn-based-- which is admittedly a predilection of mine in set-combat games like this. It's great bc of how it challenges the player to solve it, almost like a puzzle. I just finished playing a few of the souls games and there are, strangely enough, similarities in that sense. It's difficult to brute force your way through this. If you haven't figured out how to make the most of your party, affinities, and the myriad tools you're given to win fights, even regular enemies can make quick work of you. And if it is too easy, that's a clear signal you're dragging and might be behind on the story's strictly-imposed schedule. That being said, it's nowhere near as difficult as FromSoft's work.

    Probably should have just made this a review. Oh well.
    reply
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