Shin Megami Tensei IV Developers Answer Fan Questions

By Sato . April 27, 2013 . 11:44pm


The crowded NicoNico Super Meeting 2’s second day is still going on, and Atlus’ booth has been one of the main attractions, where the developers of Shin Megami Tensei IV answered several questions from fans as part of the Atlus Live 2 Days event. Here’s what Siliconera gathered from their Q&A session:



  • There are no direct connections between Shin Megami Tensei IV and the previous three numbered games. However, there will be remixed versions of their soundtracks.


  • The world isn’t tied to that of Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey, but the Black Samurai character will have some sort of connection. It was hinted that there may also be a connection to the first Shin Megami Tensei, in the future.


  • Total play time to clear Shin Megami Tensei IV will be over 50 hours. Some of the developers claimed that it takes 60 or even 100 hours.


  • There will be paid DLC. Atlus say that it won’t make you feel as though they’re just trying to make money, and will be worthwhile content.


  • Lucifer will be making an appearance in Shin Megami Tensei IV. However, Louis Cyphre won’t be showing his face for now.


  • The three Jack brothers will also be making a reappearance, along with a new Jack Frost demon to the series.


  • Character voices can be turned on and off.


  • You can now acquire experience points through demon fusing and also by conversing with them.


  • The “Macca Beam” used by the Preta enemy in Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey will be back to haunt players.


  • Atlus hinted at a harder difficulty mode being included.


  • Shin Megami Tensei IV boasts over 100 tracks used in game. An original soundtrack is expected to be released in he near future.


  • According to the map designer, he’s been asked about his reason for focusing so much in the Shinjuku district of Tokyo. He admits that his reason for that is because it’s where he’s been going out to drink lately, but he also wanted to make it clear that other parts of Tokyo will be in the game.


  • One fan asked about Shin Megami Tensei lead roles always being male characters and if there’s a chance we could be seeing a female lead in the future. The possibility of a future female lead wasn’t ruled out, although different development team members seemed to have different feeling towards the idea. Some welcomed the possibility of there being a choice of gender, while others felt that Shin Megami Tensei games are better suited to male leads.



  • Another interesting question was with regard to the different-colored scarves the Samurai wear and how it seems to clash with the Japanese style. According to Atlus, the various colors do symbolize something, but they didn’t reveal what exactly. The reason for including the scarves to the design is to give them a unique look, rather than it being a strictly Japanese style.


  • The Moon Phase System won’t be part of Shin Megami Tensei IV.


  • A comic in V-Jump magazine has been confirmed.


Shin Megami Tensei IV will be released on May 23rd in Japan and July 16th in North America. Europe is getting the game, too, but a European release date hasn’t been announced yet.

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  • “According to Atlus, the various colors do symbolize something, but they didn’t reveal what exactly.”

    Surely there’s only one explanation: They’re hinting at their next SMT spin-off, Megami Sentai Tenseiger! They even have the full five-person team with the token girl already.

    (Rumor is that the initial title was Tensei Sentai MegaMan, but they scrapped it for some reason.)

    • M’iau M’iaut

      What, we need to wait for SMT IV-2: Enter Lightning for the black ranger?

    • Gyro Zeppeli

      Goseiger with demons? No thank you!

      • Hey, who knows. With Atlus writing, it could be good without having two characters in the team that are more or less duplicates of other two characters in the team, or without going through three largely identical villain teams just to keep things interesting.

    • M’iau M’iaut

      (Rumor is that the initial title was Tensei Sentai MegaMan, but they scrapped it for some reason.)

      Simple, they would have had to cancel the game if they kept that title.

    • They’ve already got tokusatsu designers doing the demons. :P

    • Gabi López Ramírez

      All my likes. That was just beautiful. :)

    • Isaac Newton

      What sentai???
      Are they going to transform then turn into demons?

      • “Transform! God-body Armament!”
        “Fusion code initiate! Goddess Fusion – DaiTenSei, complete!!”
        “You shall haunt this world no longer! Finishing move – INCARNATION BANISH!!!”

        • vileBrenman

          this is the best comment in all the universe.

    • DuskSharkEX

      All of my likes.

    • JustThisOne


      Black Samurai?!

    • Guest

      I was thinking of Megami Sentai Devilman or something like that. So it’s like Goddess Squadron Devilman, but Tenseiger sounds way cooler.

      • “Tenseiger” (Tenseijaa) is also a few diacritic marks added to “Tenseisha“, which means “reincarnated person”.

        • Guest

          Okay yeah yours is so much better ^u^ hahah

    • Hound

      Oh my God. A live-action Megami Sentai show. That’s too awesome.

      • “Gods“. Let’s try not to make the lesser gods feel left out. :3 #DeityRights

  • $39420547

    i love hearing news about this game

  • Makoto Yuki

    A comic? Well. if this is an Atlus product, I’m looking forward to see MC name.

    • Oscar Alberto Abrego Suarez

      Will probably will be Flynn, im more eager to see what name they use in SMTxFire emblem.

      • Makoto Yuki

        Well, also his surname of course >.>

        • Oscar Alberto Abrego Suarez

          It probably wont have.

          • Makoto Yuki

            Alright o.o

          • Oscar Alberto Abrego Suarez

            I say that because the characters has only one name so far, even the support cast unlike Nocturne.

          • Makoto Yuki

            I see, makes sense.

  • Huh. Didn’t know Isabeau’s wearing a skirt; can’t imagine that being terribly efficient in fighting demons. But then Walter has a gaping hole in his top, so I suppose the organization just doesn’t have strict dress codes to begin with.

    • natchu96

      “looks at every female ninja in anime ever”

      It seems to work for them. Though one has to ask whether or not they worry about people accidentally looking underneath when they move around and jump so much.

      • LightZero

        I know I wouldn’t be complaining about a little panties shots with them jumping around lol. Then again maybe that might be the intention. Us guys will be thinking with the wrong head and they slit our throats.

      • puchinri

        Not entirely going to complain because I do like some of those outfits for varying reasons, but those are usually designed by guys (for fanservice). And for some reason, they barely write in the lady ninja using it for the most obvious practicality (seducing). But the weird part in this case is, Walter is also a guy, so maybe men just like to draw revealing tops, no matter who the character is?

  • AkuLord3

    Lot of good questions and some good results from answers. lol Macca Beam back for more tears, can’t wait to see what other themes from the other SMT games they remix (come on Town Battle theme~). Ahh man more excited for this

  • Barrylocke89

    Getting EXP for conversing is an interesting tidbit. I know some people out there mentioned not caring for the conversing side of Megaten, but maybe players will find it more worthwhile to be a good negotiator.

    • Ferofax

      Levelling up for being a slick talker? Mmm. Maybe a Demon Whisperer skill? And if talks don’t work out, you can always just whack em.

    • Androu1

      Conversing’s just kind of a sucker. It’s too random sometimes, like in Strange Journey if you tell Apsaras she’s like a durian she might either get pissed off or she will become super happy. But it’s random. So it doesn’t matter too much what you pick. Was even worse in Nocturne, IMO. “Hey gimme money. Hey gimme a thing. Hey lemme suck your energy.” That is all. A rare question now and then with the right answer being random but mostly just giving stuff to them… oh well.

      • Oscar Alberto Abrego Suarez

        It wasnt as bad in SJ at least you get some sub app to avoid getting them angry and avoid scaping with your money.

  • Ethan_Twain

    Boo! Boo I say! Not Atlus, no. I boo the fans asking questions at this event. Come on now, these are the best you could come up with? Most of these are just content questions that will be immediately answered in less than a month when the product is on shelves. This was an opportunity to ask the creative leads about the process and intent of SMT IV. Ask about how they decided which demons would get redrawings for the game. Ask about the challenges of presenting a similar law/chaos dichotomy in so many games without it getting stale. Ask about why they picked the hardware they did, and why they went with the sprite battle graphics. Ask which of the many SMT games are their favorites and if they tried to bring any of the strengths of those titles over into this new one.

    …or we could find out how long the game is a month early.

    At least the female protagonist question was a good one. Not the answer I would have wanted, but at least it was a good question.

    • Shane Guidaboni

      Then again, you weren’t there. It’s easy to say in hindsight what someone should have asked them, but maybe they were nervous talking to these developers from their favorite company.

      • He still has a point that the questions corresponding to many of the answers here still involve people asking what they’d get to know in about a month though. I’m not particularly sensitive about spoilers, but wouldn’t that spoil the surprise, even if not to a severe degree?

        • Ethan_Twain

          The spoiler angle didn’t even occur to me. It’s just… most of these questions could have been answered by grunts on the QA team. Waste of access to creative leads, I say.

    • On some level I might agree, but this also shows the excitement for the game of which I am also excited for ^.^

  • Oscar Alberto Abrego Suarez

    No moon? Thats a bummer, i loved the moon Phases.

    • Shane Guidaboni

      Yeah, kind of disappointed about that, too.

      • Oscar Alberto Abrego Suarez

        “Im a different girl on the Full moon. Come and get it!”. Comments like that will be missed.

        • Androu1

          Kagutsuchi was kinda annoying in Nocturne. Just making me stand in front of the Cathedral of Shadows, walking in circles until it moved to Full so I could perform Sacrificial Fusions…

          • Oscar Alberto Abrego Suarez

            Maybe but i liked it. What i didnt liked was the fact that it affected chests, i always got freaking Life Stones -_-

  • rebecasunao

    “Some welcomed the possibility of there being a choice of gender, while others felt that Shin Megami Tensei games are better suited to male leads.”
    Goddammit. I don’t even know what to say. -_- This makes me so angry and frustrated.

    • I don’t think they mean any particular ill will by it, but it would have been interesting to hear the reasoning behind the statement.

      • malek86

        Likely because the game is aimed more at male gamers, and since the main character is supposed to be an avatar of yourself, they probably don’t want players to feel unconnected.

        Having two different gender characters would probably be a lot of work. I have to wonder if they deemed P3P too expensive or something – I was half-expecting to find a female protagonist in P4G too, but nothing. Perhaps they found out that majority of the P3P players still used the male MC.

        It’s a bit weird though, because I assume that SMT is a lot less gender-dependant than Persona, for example Nocturne could have worked just as well with a female protagonist. So maybe this one will be a lot more story-heavy than the ones before?

        • I agree, SMT feels less gender-dependant than Persona to me as well – I enjoyed P3 a lot more when the portable version with the gender option came along and I was able to play the game as a girl, whereas in SMT gender didn’t matter to me at all, because the games weren’t trying as hard to make me feel like I’m the one inside but rather focused more on actual storytelling in a more cinematic way (compared to P3/P4, which are rather part RPG, part time-management-sim [which gives them a completely different flow of gameplay] and more of a novel-y storytelling experience) – I don’t see how the SMT stories wouldn’t work around a female protagonist as well. Makes me think the devs who said that haven’t really interacted with a lot of females… ;>

          (PS: It’s pretty logical to me that a protagonist who’s a Samurai would be male, so I’m not disappointed or anything that IV doesn’t have a feMC, but it would be refreshing to get one every once in a while.)

          • Tien Ron

            they could have easily put that girl samurai as an option, they could of had same ending same everything just with a different type swap text.

          • Yeah, they could have, but I could also imagine her being one of the few rare lady samurai is somewhat of a story element in this case and might have lead to a lot of changes in story if she’d been the protag (just speculating here, I know next to nothing about IV’s story and would like to keep it that way until I play the game myself. ;>) – I’m just saying that I can see why a male protagonist makes sense in this kind of setting, back in the samurai days woman had more of a behind the scenes role after all. An interesting idea to work around that would have been if the male protag was a samurai from the past and the female protag a Kendo student from our times (I heard there’s time travelling involved in some way or another) and you’d start out in different times, show different views on the story etc. 8)

            In any case I’m just glad to see a new SMT game. :)

          • rebecasunao

            I don’t understand why the samurai part has to be realistic while the rest of the game isn’t. It could work pretty well, the game isn’t a realistic portrayal of Japan.
            I see that argument being used to justify why games set in the past have women mostly in the background (most are prostitutes or someone’s wife). They say it’s because women back then had those roles – but at the same time, games have stuff like humans being eaten by huge rats and reduced to bones in 2 seconds. Or impossible weapons, superpowers, demons (like SMT).
            I hope you understand my point. :<

        • rebecasunao

          What about us girls and women who have to play all the time as boys and men? We learned to get used to it by force because most of the time the only choice we have is to not play the game.
          Most games are made with boys and men as the target audience, since forever. Now there are many girls and women playing games, we aren’t an exception anymore. Still, we keep being ignored (black, gay and trans people even more so). That’s why it’s so frustrating to me.
          Men feeling uncomfortable due to playing as the opposite gender is an excuse I’ll never see as valid. That’s what producers say when they’re trying to convince someone that a game won’t sell. That’s what they say in order to not give a game the budget it needs/deserves.
          Are men as immature as producers and devs make them to be? Is it seriously that hard to like and identify with a character of the opposite gender? The answer is, obviously, no. If we girls and women can do that pretty well, why can’t men do the same?
          People may say it’s a matter of taste, but I’m pretty sure the guys who don’t like to play as the opposite gender are just not used to it.

          tl;dr: boys and men’s needs and wants are always being kept in mind, while girls and women keep being ignored

          • puchinri

            Very articulate post/comment, and a message that needs to be out there more. Hopefully we have more devs that don’t default to those lazy excuses and more people that also don’t buy those excuses as much. (Which I have a bit of hope for since some of the recent titles announced, but it can be hard to feel hopeful with some of the other stuff that comes up and gets said.)

          • malek86

            “Are men as immature as producers and devs make them to be?”

            Maybe it’s just a matter of culture or something. There have been many games with female protagonists, or more often just choice of gender. One notable example is Divine Divinity, where each class has both a male and female character model, and if you select the female barbarian she will comment on how “women can be warriors too, not just sorceresses”. But there are many many others. The number of WRPGs where you can not choose your own gender are almost nil. Even some other genres allow you to (shooters, platformers, etc.)

            But they seem to come mostly from the west. Japanese developers seem to have more of an issue with player-character gender connection, maybe because their games are usually more focused on the story? Anyway, often you won’t get a gender choice in japanese games. Even games where you have a player avatar (Dragon Quest, SMT) usually just have a male character image.

            Looking at some of those quotes you posted, maybe japanese developers are simply too bothered by the idea of what would happen if the players felt disconnected from their main character, whereas western developers don’t care all that much or feel that players will just adapt anyway. Or even better for them, they just circumvent the issue by letting you choose your own gender.

            (it’s worth noting that even though there are a lot of girls playing games too now, I don’t often hear complaints of sexism from Japan, so I guess the culture really is different and japanese girls aren’t bothered by having to play as guys?)

      • rebecasunao

        They never mean anything ill. The problem isn’t if they do or not anyway, it’s the fact that some people there think it’s not suitable for a girl to be the protagonist. I’d also like to know why.

    • Its better than “Women like dual blades because the attacks are pretty!”

      But it still is what it is. I just wonder how they can reason that…

    • puchinri

      I know, I’m kind of disappointed in them for that. I hope their minds get changed somehow (for those feeling it’s better suited to male roles), but goodness.

      • rebecasunao

        I hope so too. :<

  • Lazulis

    D’oh…the response of that female protag question makes me sad. :c

    • Yeah me too. Why suited to male roles? We can have strong ladies. Maya Amano was a good protagonist.

    • Pockystix

      it’s sad that great developers still think that gamers only want to play as male characters :/

    • Spider-Man

      I don’t mind which gender is available. I generally prefer playing as my own gender in JRPGs, though. Aside from Monster Hunter where I mostly play as female. I wouldn’t mind the chance to choose a gender though, like in P3P.

    • Suicunesol

      I think sometimes developers want to tell one, particular story, and they think that the story is better told when the main character is not interchangeable. It’s possible that there is a story-related reason that the main character is male.

      …personally, though, I think it’s the ratio of male-female SMT players. If the number of female SMT players was high enough, you can bet ATLAS would make a it choice. :P

      • Pockystix

        in the first few games it made some sense to have male characters (no spoilers here), but I think at this point it’s becoming less and less of an issue to have to make the option available for players. SMT Nocturne, Strange Journey, and others really had no reason to be without a gender option; the characters were generally blank slates. Hell, Devil Survivor 2 had you choose the gender of your OS over being able to choose your own; it’s starting to get a little silly to think that stories can only be made with a single gender in mind.

        There is the possibility of the developers not wanting to put the extra effort into the story, as having two genders means a slight variant on events and relationships as a whole. But even with that taken into account, the changes would be minor, and allow their games to reach out to their audience that wants the option.

        And no, I still don’t believe the excuse of “mostly men play games, so we shouldn’t bother with gender options!”. It’s such an archaic fallback answer that I think I can firmly say it’s a dinosaur in this day and age to think this; as a developer.

      • Shane Guidaboni

        People are going to start asking for female alternative stories in their novels.

        • Actually, more so male alternatives because (at least in teen novels) there are many that star females. However, yes, that is something (as a writer) that I fear. I don’t understand what inherently is wrong in believing that a male protagonist better suits the SMT games? Could they still include a female option? Yes, it just doesn’t have to be the superior version of the story like in P3P or Megaman ZX.

          • puchinri

            There are any female stars, but there are still more male ones.

            The problem is that there isn’t really a reason for either gender to be the better option and in this case, it’s the better option because it’s the default (which is lazy among many other things).

            And no, it doesn’t need to be a superior version. It just needs to be there from the start.

          • Laziness is the excuse everyone throws out for everything. And, yes it can definitely be true. In this case, it most likely is. And to my comment about novels I specifically mentioned teen ones, not novels overall (though I still fear that we’re soon going to be asked for alternative stories for different genders… something that in that case is absolutely stupid).

            Now, the superior version of a game… I don’t want either side to be the superior side, that’s just what I’ve witnessed with the two examples I gave. Thankfully Capcom reversed that with Megaman ZX Advent, but if P3P is any indication, I don’t want them to make the female version the better version. Having the ability to save a certain character from death exclusively in the female path was a load of BS. Why couldn’t it have been in both paths? That’s what I don’t want to see if they do (and should do this) add a female version of the next SMT protagonist. At least if they don’t add an equivalent event for the male version of the protagonist.

          • puchinri

            I think that does still apply for teen novels too (perhaps especially).

            My thing is just that, they shouldn’t need to make a separate version later. They should just include the option from the start and then neither needs to be the cause/focus of a superior version. I think it’s a bit iffy in the P3P example. I think in the end, it makes sense in context of the game (because it’d be really cheating female players to erase one of their romantic options), but I still don’t think he should be erased in either version.

            The problem is though, how strongly they gender things. They really should just make things more gender-neutral; then again, SMT is technically that (where Persona isn’t). I can’t see that happening in SMT because you don’t have romantic options (not that you did to start with in Persona either, right?).

          • Not when I search through teen novels, the majority are aimed at girls and feature female leads (for the obvious, albeit unfair, reasoning that teen males don’t read and females do). It’s an unfair setup, but one that is understandable due to many of the same reasons that games feature more male leads (not that it is right).

            As to separate versions, I agree that they shouldn’t be added later, if they’re there, they should be there from the start. The SMT franchise does act very gender neutral (when speaking of the main games) and they could have done it with any of them. Specifically, Strange Journey would’ve been a great spot for them to do that.

            Persona has had romances in the games, though they were much more defined by the plot then the player’s choices. The first Persona had two of the female party members deeply enamored with the PC and that plot point was carried into Persona 2 (at least Innocent Sin). Innocent Sin and Eternal Punishment do something much stronger that way. The entire story is focused deeply on Tatsuya Suou and Maya Amano (more so Maya due to how Eternal Punishment plays out), so the two different, yet distinct characters both led the game. For romances there were numerous options for Tatsuya in Innocent Sin, but the ‘canon’ pairing was with Maya. Eternal Punishment though focused again on a story driven romance, much like the first game, only this time it was between Maya and Katsuya Suou (Tatsuya’s older brother).

            So yeah, SMT should be able to easily have options for the gender of the protagonist. However, if we were to discuss Persona, I’d have a much, much different view on it.

          • puchinri

            I haven’t seen that to be the case, but maybe it depends on where you’re looking? (I guess it also depends on genre, but on a larger scale, I think it is more male leads.)

          • Overall, I have no doubt, but all that’s made available at my local bookstores are those aimed at girls.

      • puchinri

        Well, if we put it like that, there’s a high number of women buying (registering) copies of Animal Crossing, so does that mean Nintendo should start removing the option to play as a male?

        P4 undoubtedly had a large female fanbase, but they didn’t bother to add that option to Golden. We can never assume they’ll do the logical (and “right”) thing and add the option to play as either gender, no matter what. Sometimes, companies/devs just get set in their ways and they have an entire industry around them that not only supports but encourages those ways and mentalities.

        It’s good people question and call it out though. Now they know people do want that option and maybe they’ll ignore their female fanbases less.

        • Suicunesol

          Animal Crossing is a life simulator game that is nothing like SMT. Animal Crossing was designed to be highly customizable for people of all ages. That’s the emphasis, so they wouldn’t remove options like that. But for SMT, the emphasis is on plot and exploration (I believe?) Further customizability, though nice, would just be icing.

          Yes, we shouldn’t assume companies will do the logical thing. You’re definitely right about that. But… it is also true that what is logical to us is not logical to them. It’s possible that adding gender choice might have cost too much, or maybe would affect the brand name somehow. Or maybe their research showed the female fanbase actually preferred the MC as a handsome dude with glasses. I have no clue really.

          • puchinri

            I don’t think what the genre is or other details really matter in the end though, right? The point is, both use MCs that are virtually blank slates that the player fills in. I mean, I wasn’t even going to go that far with the example, but that’s one thing they certainly have in common and I think the most important part.

            Oh, of course what’s logical in general isn’t logical to them. And that happens for a number of reasons (some really poor, some are at least mildly understandable). I give them less credit/more flak on this because they have had fe!MC options in the past with other stuff too (even if it wasn’t Persona, but that probably just makes more of a case). In the end, it is being lazy and anything/everything is a cop-out. I can’t let them off the hook for that, no matter how they try to justify it. I won’t enjoy the series significantly less, but it will be something that nags at me especially after this.

  • Isaac Newton


    Waiting for the english asian ver.

  • malek86

    From those answers, you can understand that they tried to mainstream/simplify the game (no moon phases, a harder difficulty mode likely means the default mode won’t be too hard, more ways to get exp, DLC content). I wonder if that will pay off. I think SMT is more aimed at niche players who normally don’t appreciate these kind of changes, but I guess it worked for Fire Emblem…

    • cirE

      Yep, I hate to say it, but I really appreciate changes like these.

      I’ve never been one to sink a ton of time into grinding my way through a difficult RPG, and now that I’m going to college, I don’t have the free time to do so anyway. I picked up a 3DS and Fire Emblem because in the past I’ve been a fan of sRPGs other than Fire Emblem, and heard about casual mode not being as unforgiving as the past games. I had a blast playing through the game on Hard/Casual to experience the stories, and can’t say that it would have been an enjoyable experience to me without casual mode. I’ve watched my friends playing hardcore mode…they simply rage and reset the game when one of their characters is killed. That just seems like a huge waste of time to me.

      As odd as it is, when playing RPGs, I’m more concerned about getting through the game and experiencing the story than I am actually playing the game. The same will be true for SMTIV, as the story looks really interesting.

    • Androu1

      I dunno. Persona 4 Golden has a lot of new features that streamlined it but still keeps its difficulty. Hell, the first dungeon on Very Hard was much harder than ALL OF NOCTURNE ON HARD. SMT isn’t even that hard, really, as long as you’re good at fusing powerful stuff.

      • Oscar Alberto Abrego Suarez

        You are crazy there is nothing hard in Golden, heck even the Pretas had much more chances of killing you than any enemy in P4G, the God Rise, then Gold Hands huge ammounts of experience and so on. Thats delusional.

        Digital Devil Saga is were you get your ass owned though.

      • malek86

        Multiple difficulty levels shouldn’t count. Games should be compared to each other on their default difficulty level. If P4G on normal is easier than Nocturne on normal, then the game is easier (haven’t actually played P4G, just making an example).

  • ragingmerifes

    “The Moon Phase System won’t be part of Shin Megami Tensei IV.”

    Seriously, I don’t think it will make much of a difference aside from fusing special demons; Nocturne, for example, had a “Moon Phase” System which worked in a relatively shallow way, and was not useful for much. Don’t hate me.

    “The “Macca Beam” used by the Preta enemy in Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey will be back to haunt players.”

    No please, don’t. Please, oh my god, I’m so screwed… just joking, but I really expected them to appear in Soul Hackers and had a Magnetite Beam. Think about it, Atlus.

    “There will be paid DLC. Atlus say that it won’t make
    you feel as though they’re just trying to make money, and will be
    worthwhile content.”

    I really like this idea. If the DLC works as expansions, and not just downloadable demons sold by unit, it will make the game longer and more fun. Unless there is a downloadable Demi-Fiend Frost or Yu Narukami with a speedo. Then they could charge 50 dollars and I’d buy it.

    “You can now acquire experience points through demon fusing and also by conversing with them.”

    And this means the level cap will probably be 999.

    I’m expecting so much from this game…

    • RoxasTheUnknown1

      Nocturnes a bad example. The first Digital Devil Saga with the Solar noise was useless. In Nocturne the moon had more plot relevance than anything else and that imo made it pretty cool. Better than P3 moon system that wasn’t a system. xD

      • Shane Guidaboni

        Moon system in Soul Hackers seems to affect demon strength. At least that’s what I think it’s doing.

        • ragingmerifes

          It does, a little bit; actually, it is the only time I’ve seen the moon phase system having effect without being in its full/new extremes, as it affects stuff even when it is half-mooned.

          • Jisgsaw

            The moon phases (other than full/new) also affected some fusions in Nocturne.

  • Junko Enoshima

    Well, I’ve been hoping for a certain phallic demon to be in this game….surprised no one asked, too. *cough*

    • Actually, people in the NicoNico comments were screaming “ASK ABOUT MARA!” over and over. Alas, no one asked about Mara.

  • Mrgrgr and Unacceptable World

    A new type of Jack Frost………..color me heee-hoo.^_^

  • Calling it now. The new Jack is probably Samurai Jack as in a Jack dressed like the main character.

    • vileBrenman


  • Tom_Phoenix

    “Paid DLC”

    As for the other answers:

    – The length of the game seems appropriate

    – I’m happy to hear that there will be a harder difficulty. That said, I have to wonder what kind of changes that exactly will entail. Will Charon’s bribe be raised or eliminated entirely? Will the number of saves per area be restricted? Will fusions have a higher accident rate?

    – I LOVE the fact that the OST will be incredibly extensive. It ensures that there is going to be a great variety of themes. Combined with the quality of the music we’ve heard so far and the first print soundtrack seems like a must-have.

    – It’s kind of weird that they’ve decide to eliminate the Moon Phases in a core SMT game, considering how important Demon fusion and negotiation is.

    – I am not sure why some of the developers seem to think SMT games are more suited to male leads. The protagonist’s gender is usually irrelevant to the themes that these games tend to pursue (with the exception of SMT I, due to the whole Lilith thing), so allowing the player to choose their own gender wouldn’t make much of a difference.

    • Göran Isacson

      Agreed- if the game is just about exploring philosophy and what makes order and chaos tick I guess you could say “why make a second skin when the main character doesn’t really matter as it’s all what you put into them”, but you could just as easily say “why NOT make a second skin?” Like, how much work would it honestly be to just have the MC switch genders and then just have the same adventure?

  • Pockystix

    I dunno “Shin Megami Tensei games are better suited to male leads.”

    Sounds like BS to me, since Persona 3 Portable’s female leas was a lot more interesting than the male one. . .

    then again, they said they were disappointed in that one, despite it being pretty much better in all ways to the original game lol

    • LightZero

      P3 isn’t a SMT game. It’s a spin-off. They aren’t called SMT games in Japan. But I agree with the above female characters work better in the Persona series. Maya (who shouldn’t had been mute) and the P3 FeMC are the best examples. The main titles are more about ideologies instead of being character centric. Since most of us who play megaten are guys I can see where the logic come from. Maybe one day they might consider doing a male/female option again like they did for SMT: if…

  • “The “Macca Beam” used by the Preta enemy in Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey will be back to haunt players.”


  • cj_iwakura

    Who are the people there?

  • DesmaX

    I don’t really see the point in having female leads in a SMT game. Having the choice would be cool, but I can “connect” better to the game universe (Especially for a game like SMT, that normally have mute MC) better with a Male lead

  • Jesse Torres

    I still dont like the battle perspective. I would have liked a third person view during battles.

  • The persona series fits more with having a gender choice in my mind. Not hat I wouldn’t mind it in the SMT but it always feels more story driven vs interaction/story that persona gives.
    The way they did P3 on the psp gave a tinge of hope for gender choice in the next persona game.They really handled that so well in my opinion. Even more replay value of seeing how they handle the social links and the depth of the characters the MC sees from both a male and female perspective.

    • Ethan_Twain

      I fully agree. Since Persona is at it’s most basic premise “SMT but in high school” the gender of characters is much more significant. The more abstract philosophical content in core SMT games doesn’t hinge on the character’s gender really. But in high school? That time when you put hundereds of students discovering their identity and sexuality in a building together for 8+ hours a day? In that setting, gender’s pretty important.

      • Don’t know who down voted both your comment nor mine but the atmosphere in the SMT v.s Persona is very different. I won’t be against there being a female lead in SMT but it just feels to fit more in Persona. Persona is more about making you feel like the player in my mind while SMT is more about you reading/playing through a story.

  • puchinri

    That’s a bit of a shame for the male lead part; hopefully those in favor of an option win out on a future title~. x’D

    I was curious about the scarves though. I can’t wait to see what they symbolize, no matter how minimal or significant.

    Also, gonna kinda sorta miss moon phases.

  • Eefara

    Good stuff. In slightly unrelated news, has posted that they’re going to be offering the preorder box-trenchcoat-thing. :D

  • Jonattas F.

    And nobody asked why they chose f**** stactic sprites dated from 1996 instead of 3d models???

    • benhofb

      Would you rather have the some 300-400 demons that are “static” (when they actually move and stuff) or 20 something re-skinned 3D models? I mean, we all know what the 3DS can do, but it takes up a lot less data just to do 2D models. ((DATA not money; sure, they have to re-scale and redraw things for the 3DS a little bit more))

      • Oscar Alberto Abrego Suarez

        Can you honestly (BE HONEST) say that you would use at least HALF the demons? Even 100? I have 3 playtroughts in SJ i have changed demons everytime i get a Demon Source and i have only 43% of them. Nocturne didnt had that much demons and i barely used 64% in two playtroughts so having more doesnt mean squat if you wont use most of them as you stick to what works.

    • Tom_Phoenix

      Beacuse constantly reusing Nocturne’s models gets old too.

    • LightZero

      And no one ask why you are being a jerk about it. Sprites aren’t dated. I rather have cool looking sprites that are unique instead of re-skin enemies.

      • Jonattas F.

        LOL dude, chill out! … Seriously If you like the sprites thing… good for you! But the ones they are using in this game have the same “elaborated animation” from a game that was released 16 years ago!!! And to me it feels like fighting against an evil silhouette made of paper!

    • Kelohmello

      the amount of enemies in the game are massive. It’s only possible because they use the artwork they’ve been using for years and add on more on top of that. 3D models would take too much cash, time, and ultimately you’d get less enemies, less party members, and more dissatisfaction.

      • Oscar Alberto Abrego Suarez

        Nocturne had the right ammount of demons, i dont see your point as no one complained. Heck even Persona games has the right ammount of Persona.

  • macca beaM JESUS NO

  • I didn’t knew Isabeau was wearing a skirt. Anyways, what kind of DLC can we expect for this game? All I can think of are costumes and maybe extra dungeons.

    • Firekitty

      That’s not a skirt. It looks like she’s wearing the same uniform shirt all the guys are wearing, but forgot to put on the pants.

      • Androu1

        “oh no it’s the apocalypse and i forgot my pants!”

  • Couldn’t someone have asked why they kept the 2D sprites on battle screens? I suppose it’s for time or cost-saving reasons but it would be nice to have the developers themselves explain the reasoning behind it.

  • MrTyrant

    over 100 tracks? ost? OMG! seems like i will have a lot of “eargasm” when I play the game.

  • Xmas Lopez

    A companion comic? I’m so all over that

  • Lzyslckr

    Jack Frost. Atlus’ Eevee.

  • I’ve seen some of the response to the protagonist’s sex question and thought I’d ask a question myself. What’s wrong with feeling a story is better suited for male roles? I’m not against having a female protagonist in a SMT game (if we include Persona as part, then let me say that I adore Maya), but, as a writer, I’m curious as to why that seems like an issue? That’s not to say that there isn’t a place for games where the protagonist should (or should be available to) be female, but it’s something I’m curious about.

    I’m mainly asking this because the wording of the answer seems to not intend any offense, but just state their reasoning (albeit vaguely) for why they use male protagonists in the SMT games. So, I’m curious as to why it seems to be an issue.

    As a writer, I write stories with male protagonists because that’s the main audience I’m trying to target. I have nothing against female protagonists (I’ve got stories with them that I’ve worked on or am working on), but that doesn’t change my overall view of writing protagonists of the same sex as me. Is it an issue there as well? Or is it just that I’m targeting a specific audience?

    Anyways, this is getting long and I don’t want to keep everyone reading for ages. What I’m trying to get at is that I don’t believe it’s wrong to have a view that a certain sex works better for certain stories/games. In the case of SMT (at least IV) it works purely due to the time period. However, something like Persona, I wouldn’t mind P5 being built from the ground up with a female protagonist. So, what I’m saying is that I don’t see any issue with the belief that a certain sex suits certain stories better. That may not be what the Atlus devs who gave that response were aiming at, but that’s what I took from it.

    Now, I’d like to have some healthy discussion with others on why they may view it differently or any answers to the questions I’ve posed here. Thanks for reading and I hope to see some discussion XD

    • Oscar Alberto Abrego Suarez

      If the MC has a personality i will play whatever gender im given, if the MC is silent and is a girl i would had probably ignored the games unless they were with women as Mcs from the first game (My first tittle that made me realize the awesomenes of the SP concept was P3 after all) then i would probably play them, fault P3 for that.

      The thing here is that their philosophy is MC= Player and most players are male, the concept of the Silent Protagonist is to allow better self immersion, and a matching gender is very important so i dont think is about the story is about the immersion you get from the character and for that your audience must match the MC gender. It would diminish the experience to have double genders as compared to focusing on a simple and cohesive story so thats why you dont get Female MC in any form.

      Persona is another thing entirely, same with IF.

    • rebecasunao

      The last paragraph made me want to reply you. It’s always nice to welcome discussions. :3

      I don’t think there needs to be any distinction between what stories would fit a certain gender more (not biological sex, since not everyone’s gender is tied to their sex). Pretty much all the reasons people can use to justify a man being more suitable than a woman (or vice versa) for a certain story/gameplay are either sexist or homophobic. Or just plain stupid.

      I’m pretty curious about the reasoning behind what they said, but at the same time I don’t want to hear yet another sexist statement coming from publishers or devs.
      Two things we’ve heard before regarding japanese games and female characters:

      “Well, if I had to pick one, I would say it is the scene where Joy first appears in the game, with Bayonetta and her impostor getting into a pose battle. That was my way of expressing the feminine notion that, to one woman, all other women are enemies. Even women walking by each other will check out what the other is wearing, and might smoulder a bit with antagonism. Women are scary.” – Hideki Kamiya, talking about his favorite scene in Bayonetta.

      “The Trico is a very powerful creature. If we’d had a beefed-up, powerful hero, it would have thrown off the balance a little bit, so the design naturally drove me to create an adolescent female character who was light on her feet.
      But in the end I decided a boy would have a little more grip to climb the Trico. Another problem is that girls tend to wear skirts, and The Last Guardian features a lot of climbing…” – Fumito Ueda, talking about The Last Guardian.

      That’s only two examples coming from Japanese developers. There are endless sexist statements about female characters in games, no matter the nationality of the company behind it.
      Their mindset is incredibly outdated, and I saw that in the answer given by Atlus.

      • I have to reply to you on this. Mainly your comments about gender not mattering to a story. To do this, I am going to bring up an example of my own writing. I am writing a mecha story with a male protagonist. That I believe a male protagonist suits my mecha story more than a female one, so I have written a male one, is that sexist. Or is there an issue with Remember Me because the developers decided that a woman was the better choice for a protagonist. I am confused by your reasoning here.

        • rebecasunao

          Why do you think a mecha story suits a male protagonist better?
          If the Remember Me devs said that, I would like to know why. Because reasons such as “women are more acrobatic” and stuff are sexist, yeah.

          • So, everything’s sexist? I’m very, very confused by your reasoning. It’s almost like saying that we should have gender neutral everything. Gender neutral stories, games, movies, everything. That no one can have specifically male or female protagonists in anything. It’s really confusing.

            And to your question, I decided that a male protagonist would be more suitable for my (keyword here) mecha story for a few reasons. The primary one being that I am male and prefer writing protagonists of the same gender as me. After that, there’s the fact that I prefer writing relationships from a male perspective and that I like mecha series with male protagonists. That’s not to say that female protagonists cannot or should not exist (there’s more than enough room for them) within the genre, I just prefer male leads for my (again, keyword) stories.

            Writers and developers should be allowed to choose whatever gender they wish for their protagonists without being attacked for being sexist (in the long run). For a game like SMT having both genders available makes sense, but it shouldn’t be necessary for every single game and/or every single story every created or being created.

            Edit: And before I forget, the Remember Me devs said that they chose a female lead because it ‘just felt right’ for the game they were making. It wasn’t a marketing or business decision, it was purely story based.

          • klkAlexar

            If you want to write about a male protagonist because that’s what you are comfortable writing and because you are writing for a male audience then it isn’t sexist. The problem is that some video game developers either aren’t aware that females play video games, or they write female characters in very stereotypical way that becomes offensive.

          • I appreciate your input. And it is true, the video game industry just doesn’t seem to realize that.

          • rebecasunao

            No, not everything is sexist. -_- That is why I asked your reasons and what the Remember Me devs said.

            Even though not everything is sexist, pretty much all the reasons to choose one gender over another are when it comes to video games (not talking about all industries here).
            Since games combine both storytelling and gameplay, the characters must be written while keeping those two aspects in mind. Devs are always mentioning design choices as excuses to not use women as protagonists or in ways different than we are used to see. That’s sexist.
            A lot of times devs also undermine and stereotype women, like in the two examples I mentioned before. They make up excuses regarding both storytelling and design choices. That’s a prejudicial combo for anyone who isn’t a white and straight man.

            You may say that there’s room for women in the mecha genre yet there are so few examples of meaningful female characters that are part of it (female main characters are non-existent), like in pretty much any other genre of storytelling that isn’t exclusively aimed at women.

            Men hold the majority of positions of power, and in the industries where works of fiction are produced the situation isn’t any different.
            Men keep creating things with other men in mind, narrowing their creativity and keeping other people from empathizing with characters they may find similar to themselves, and also from enjoying fiction as much as they want to.

            I’ll try to give you a real example to make this more clear: I’m a white, chubby (more like fat but people still see that word as something gross, so) and not really social woman. Finding chubby women in fiction that aren’t mocked and dehumanized is incredibly hard. Every time I find a chubby character that is well written (or close to that) I get really, really happy.

            But even so, I get to identify with more characters than black, trans, gay women or men.

            Next time you write a story, try to think of all the other people who aren’t straight guys and don’t have many role models or characters they can see themselves as.
            Believe me when I say there’s a LOT of people who are being excluded from enjoying things as much as you are able to.

          • Thank you for sharing your viewpoint. It clears much up. However, please watch the assumptions made from the limited information provided about my protagonist. I’ve not said anything about him other than that he’s male and my reasoning for writing a male character. I’ve not shared my six other leads that populate the story either. Five of whom are women of varying cultures, ethnic backgrounds, beliefs and body types. One of whom has no social skills to speak of, might I add.

            I’m not trying to exclude anyone, I just want to write the protagonists I want to write. If that is offensive and sexist, then I’m going to bear that title with pride purely because I refuse to back down on my beliefs as a writer and a person.I will also not apologize for being male and wanting to write stories for my friends. Though I do want to thank you again for sharing your viewpoints and clearing up what you meant.

    • Oscar Alberto Abrego Suarez

      Its not about the story is about the Silent Protagonist, the concept is that the player is the MC, and for that you need a matching gender and since most players are male then thats why a female role is almost not used because that would destroy the immersion they search for. For instance i can play a game with a MC with Personality regardless of gender because im not spected to fullfill a role and become the character im specting to see the story from the MC perspective rather than live it.

      Then dual protagonists would damage the story because its not one single and cohesive story, most people are not okay with only a reeskin of the MC, they would like something to set the stories appart from each other and that would require a lot of changes to the plot to make it work from a female MC perspective.

      This is why Female roles are so hard to come by.

      Double post XD

    • puchinri

      The problem is not feeling that a story is better-suited to having a protag of a certain gender, but why feels that way is important. I’m also a writer myself (and I want to write for a variety of audiences, genres, etc) and I’ve been taking a number of classes that really explore these issues on various levels; it’s pretty fascinating.

      To me, I think the issue is that a lot of people say that the protagonist needs to be male only because male is the default (or the writer is male and thus most comfortable writing from that perspective); but in the end, that is incredibly lazy (and wrong on a few levels). And even more so, as a writer, that’s boring – for you and your audience. You’re not challenging anyone or being imaginative.

      At the same time, I think you made an interesting note about why you choose male protags. See, that can lead to circular logic down the road. The problem is, sometimes, some guys connect better with certain protagonists regardless of gender and some guys even enjoy/connect better with a female protagonist. I think you need to carefully look at what is the story you’re trying to tell and how/why you want your audience to connect with your characters.

      We also need to be careful of our reasoning. When we start throwing certain pieces of realism out the window, it makes less sense to cling to others (we have demons, but a female samurai just doesn’t make sense). There’s also the problem that plenty of people have also denied the re reality of the times around them. There have been female pirates and warriors, some quite out about it and some that masked that, just like there have been men that questioned and challenged society around them (whether for other men of different sexuality, standing up for women, etc).

      Just a minor note, we should also look at things from the other way. In the U.S., a lot of media is focused on the absolute default [white, cis, straight men that are usually able-bodied and minded; though class is a variable that’s played with]. Now, the creators and execs behind stuff just expect everyone to relate to these guys (because they’re the “default”), and usually for bad reasons. This is wrong. And really, why should entire (and sometimes larger) groups of people be expected to connect with a certain protagonist (and generally speaking, they are able to), but this same group never has to connect with protagonists that aren’t of the same group they are? Women are 50% of the population, and yet are expected to always relate to a male protag (or always have to within a particular genre and for no solid/good reason). Same with other minority groups. It doesn’t make sense, and to me, it’s disrespectful to both groups. As mentioned above, the default group (white men, whether straight, cis, or of any mind/body) aren’t so simple that they can only ever relate to other white dudes/defaults. And we do them a disservice to assume that of them, and we do those other groups (huge, diverse groups) a disservice as well to neglect them just because they’ve been able to connect with the default so far (and we should never assume that they don’t buy whatever product, or that just because we have proof they don’t buy it often, isn’t because they’re just tired of not seeing themselves, etc).

      I hope I didn’t ramble for too long and that some of that made sense.

      • You didn’t ramble too long and brought up some valid points. Much of it still coincides with what I was getting at. There shouldn’t be any issue with choosing one gender over another depending on what the writer wants to do. There should be no issue in how the characters are written or portrayed either. Their sexuality, gender, appearance, they should all be available to be different than the norm. That makes complete and utter sense.

        Games like Mass Effect have done this already (with the choices available to the player) and novels and films have been building on this for ages (they may not be perfect yet, but they’re far ahead of games), so there’s clearly improvements going on.

        I just don’t agree that a writer shouldn’t be able to choose a certain gender or their protagonists. A writer/creator should have every right to create the protagonist that they want to. It shouldn’t be based off of marketing or sales/business. It should be based off of the writer/creator’s decisions and what sort of protagonist they want to present. If the industry could work past these issues we’d probably see a lot more diversity within our games.

        • puchinri

          I agree entirely. I think the problem is though, not that writers shouldn’t have every right, because in a way they do (I guess we could get into really sticky talk about society influences this), but generally speaking, most writers do write what they want (even if it means it’ll be seen as a stigma by those backing/publishing).

          The only problem with it is when the industry only encourages a certain type of protagonist and that starts framing some people’s mentality, or when what they want to create isn’t really a *want* so much as a “I’ll also stick to the default.”

          But, I do think that if the industry itself actually matured a bit and encouraged diversity instead of cringing at it and that publishers weren’t so stuck in their ways.

          • Yeah, if we discuss the industry purely (instead of writing for novels or anime/films) then that’s very true. It’s much like the complaint about all the same feeling FPS games or Japanese RPGs. Using the default stagnates the industry instead of allowing it to grow.

            Edit: Actually, it would affect every industry not just gaming.

  • ShawnOtakuSomething

    my body is ready for this game

  • Swaggermuffin


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