Sunday, November 24, 2013

Persona News. Something Everyone Can Be Thankful For.

In the spirit of misdirection, I thought we could diverge from our regularly scheduled program and talk about big Persona news.

Let me preface by saying that the Persona series is very dear to my heart.  I won't be a hipster and say I've been playing it from the start, before it was cool, because that would be a lie.  Instead, I will admit to the truth that I have only been playing since Persona 3.  I have played about 30 minutes of Persona 2, and everyone says it's awesome, so I'll probably get around to playing that one, but Persona 4 is one of my absolute favorite games of all time.

Anyhow, Persona is one of the various splinters of the Shin Megami Tensei (SMT)...multiverse thing.  SMT spans a series of games with the same title, the Devil Survivor games (there's two at this point) and the aforementioned Persona series.  These games generally focus on humans taming demons spanning various mythologies.  Kind of like a demonic Pokemon, I guess.

So anyways, Persona focuses more on people (so far almost exclusively high school students) who use the power of "Persona", their "other self" to fight Shadows.  In Persona 3, the shadows were turning people into apathetic, soulless husks, and in Persona 4 someone was using them to commit murders.

The last proper installment to the Persona franchise was winter of 2008 when Persona 4 came out, one of the last games for the Playstation 2, and was wildly successful.  Since then, Atlus, the company that put out the games, has been beating around the bush, being a general tease to all the Persona fans craving a sequel.  In fact, a sequel was announced way back in March of 2010 (Happy Birthday to me), but nothing was ever done with it.

They released a PSP port of Persona 3 (Persona 3: Portable, or P3P), an Xbox 360/Playstation 3 fighting game that tied the timelines from 3 and 4 together (Persona 4: The Ultimate in Mayonaka Arena, or simply Persona 4 Arena in the states), and a Playstation Vita port of 4 (Persona 4: The Golden).  They were all great games, each one adding it's own particular spice to the whole Persona stew, but no P5.

However, roughly a month ago, Atlus released a website...countdown clock...thing (Persona Channel), counting down to November 24th, 8:00 p.m.

Fortunately for us in the U.S., 8:00 p.m. has already come and gone in Japan.

Atlus released news and trailers for several Persona projects, and I am...3/4 excited, for the upcoming titles.

First is a...not very informative trailer for the much anticipated Persona 5

Not much to say about this one, other than that it verifies that Persona 5 is coming out next winter for the PS3.  I'm gettin' it.

Next is a trailer about a 3DS RPG featuring both casts from 3 and 4.  So without further ado: Persona Q: Shadow of the Labyrinth.

I'm actually really interested in Shadow of the Labyrinth for several reasons.  Primarily, I want to see if and how this effects the story continuity.  There are several big flashing indicators that lead me to believe that it won't, which makes me pretty sad, but I think this could be a lot of fun.  Consider me sold.

I can see some people complaining over the art style, which to me is reminiscent of another Atlus 3DS RPG series: Etrian Odyssey or something like that (I played the demo of the first one and thought it was okay), but I think it could be fun.  So I'm down.

The last video Atlus posted was for a rhythm game for the Playstation Vita called Persona 4: Dancing All Night.

I'm really not thrilled :/

The last project wasn't announced last night, it's actually oldish news, but still exciting.  They're putting out a sequel to Persona 4: Arena

So basically last night was like...hitting a triple with the bases loaded.  Not QUITE a Grand Slam, but pretty sweet nonetheless.  I'm so thrilled for Persona 5, Q, and Arena 2 to join the ever-expanding family that is my Persona collection (Dancing All Night can burn in the hell it crawled out of).  To all of you out there who love Persona like I do, I hope I've brought some joy to you.  And to all of you who have never played Persona, consider this post my enthusiastic endorsement (of all that I've played, I would say 3 would be the best place to start!)

Thanks for reading, Happy Thanksgiving, and happy gaming, friends! :D

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