Trying something new here, since I find my normal reviews to be boring and full of a great deal of worthless filler.
- Persona summoning system: Fight battles by summoning Personas to cast spells and unleash powerful attacks.
- Social Link system: Make friends/girlfriends and strengthen your bonds in order to fuse more powerful Personas. The stronger your bonds, the more automatic level-ups your Personas get when you fuse them.
- Social statistics: Raise the main character’s stats, such as courage, diligence, and knowledge, by working part-time jobs and answering questions in school, as well as through various social events.
- There are approximately 187 Personas to summon.
- You get six unique party members (in addition to the main character) with which to form your ultimate party. There are NO instances where you are forced to use one character over another, and your characters never leave your party once they join.
- There are varied dungeons to explore, each with a unique theme. (Spoilers: For example, there’s a steamy sauna, a strip club, and an 8-bit videogame.)
- The Social Link system, mentioned above, is far more lenient than in Persona 3. It is now way easier to max all social links in one playthrough, and you won’t need to follow a strict walkthrough and lose all freedom just to do it.
- The storyline is absolutely hilarious. I almost peed my pants several times.
- The music is great, and fits every scenario/locale quite well.
- The voice acting is also pretty awesome, featuring the voices of Vash the Stampede, and Haseo.
- The control system/general gameplay is far more beginner-friendly than in other SMT games, such as Nocturne or Digital Devil Saga. Perhaps not as friendly as Devil Summoner, but you won’t be pulling your hair out.
- There are three difficulty levels. You can change levels at the beginning of the game, including at the beginning of a new game plus, and there are no hidden items or bosses that require you to play a particular mode.
- The new game plus mode seems fairly limited at first glance, but it actually gives you everything you need to be unstoppable on a subsequent playthrough. You keep your Persona compendium, which records all of your Personas. You also keep your money, and the “social statistics” of your main character, so you can almost immediately summon back your best Personas and save a lot of time on your next playthroughs.
- You can easily get around 120 or more hours of play from your first playthrough, assuming you make the right choices and your journey doesn’t end before it should….
- There are three endings to unlock, depending on how far you push your search for the truth.
- There are two secret bosses to fight in a new game plus, as well as secret/optional bosses throughout the main game.
- There is a fishing minigame that is actually pretty entertaining, as far as fishing minigames go.
- You can have multiple girlfriends/lovers, or no girlfriend, all depending on your preference.
- You don’t keep your levels, items, or equipment in a new game plus.
- You must get near the end of the game a second time, after getting the “true” ending on your first playthrough, if you want to fuse the ultimate Persona. This can take a great number of hours, depending on how thorough you are when you play.
- At some points in the game, you are forced into scenes that take up one or more of your days. This can be frustrating if you are trying to hang out with your girlfriends to max out your social links, but you keep getting pulled into events. There are also some events that completely end your ability to attend certain social links, and these are not obvious. You may end up getting a link almost maxed, only to have the link end forever the next day. The only thing you can do is wait for the next playthrough to max it.
- The ultimate forms of your party members’ Personas, as well as all of your ultimate Personas, are tied to maxing social links. If you don’t max a social link, that either means you can’t summon a particular ultimate Persona, or your party member is always stuck with their original, non-ultimate Persona. Ouch.
- There is a Persona named Mara. Mara is basically a giant penis-monster. No, I don’t mean he sort of looks like a penis. I mean he is a penis with tentacles instead of pubic hair, and a mouth just under the mushroom tip.
- The Persona Satan is nude, and has saggy woman-boobs (they are definitely not man-boobs). Six of them, if I recall correctly. I’m not going to check.
And there you have it. This review style might not actually work, but I figured I’d give it a try. It certainly seems more relevant to me than me driveling on in paragraph form.