How Character Customization Works In Shin Megami Tensei IV

By Laura . July 13, 2013 . 5:00pm

Flynn is the main protagonist of Shin Megami Tensei IV. He’s silent, like most protagonists in the series, and I must admit that when I wrote this I hadn’t played enough to be able to say he has a real “personality” yet. Demon negotiations aren’t a great way to judge, since they make you do some pretty crazy things, and choices are few and far between at this point in time. He seems to have a really good rapport with his fellow Samurai and a great friendship with Issachar.


What I can say for sure, though, is that he does seem to really enjoy himself some battles with all that Smirking.


Flynn’s starting equipment, though rather weak, looks pretty cool. It’s the blue and white coat he wears on the cover of the game. Fortunately or unfortunately, depending on how much you like that coat, Flynn’s appearance changes with his equipment. This includes upper body armor, lower body armor, head armor, and weapons. The benefits of each different armor seem rather subtle at this point in time, so I think Macca management will be a key aspect of the game.


(You can also purchase accessories, but they don’t seem to affect appearance.)


One point of interest, though, is that there is no defense stat in this game. Instead, the armors increase Flynn’s HP. Additionally, with each level Flynn grows, you’re given a number of points to distribute among his stats as you like. These include Strength, Dexterity, Magic, Agility, and Luck. You unfortunately can’t directly affect HP and MP through these points, but they increase a fair amount each level.


In addition to these points, your AI Burroughs gains points, too. I started out with gaining 10 per level. These points can be used purchase Apps from a list of Burroughs’ available installations, and there are quite a few to choose from. Here’s just a short list of some of the possible Apps she can give you:


  • Increasing the number of skills you can use
  • Increasing the number of skill your demons can keep at a time
  • Recovering HP or MP when you walk
  • Increasing the number of demons you can carry at a time
  • Changing the amount of stats your demon gains when they level up
  • Unlocking or enhancing Demon negotiation options,
  • Ability to fuse demons during battle
  • Changing the level cap for fusions (so you can fuse demons one level higher than you)
  • Decreasing the cost of the compendium summons


These Apps can range anywhere from 5 to 30 points, so gaining some Apps really takes some saving, and choosing Apps is really a point of preference. At the start of the game, Flynn only has 4 skill slots, although that number can increase with the Apps you purchase.


In addition to stats and Apps, you can also have full control over what skills Flynn learns. He learns these whenever your demons reach the point where they learn all their skills. At this point, Demon Whisper will activate and they will teach you whichever skills you want, however many you want. The only exceptions thus far seem to be the passive skills such as Resist Fire or Life Bonus (shame, those would’ve really been useful).


If you already have a skill they know, then the skill you already have automatically levels up. This makes it more powerful and decreases its MP cost a bit.


This unfortunately only happens once per a demon. It may be possible to keep a skill throughout fusions and then leveling the demons up so you can continue to level up the skill. You can also probably register a demon right before they learn their last skill in the Compendium and keep summoning them to level the skill up. This will prove very costly, though.

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  • keriaku

    Wow, this actually sounds really fun. Seems like a great expansion on old SMT systems to really feel like you’re aquiring a lot of different stuff all the time. This is why RPGs are great.

  • Tylor Boreas Makimoto

    Damn it, Tuesday, why can’t you be here already? I want to get my butt kicked numerous times before crying in my sleep in frustration.

    • mojack411

      Of course it’s the day I have a big paper due too but whatevs right?

      • Tom_Phoenix

        Then again, that’s all the more reason why you should work on your paper now. That way, you can hand it over on Tuesday and spend the rest of the day playing this game.

        • mojack411

          Funny because I was writing it then took a break to read articles and then saw this comment lol.I should have it done by the end of Monday.

    • Ispheria

      Its the day I don’t have any classes at all lol so i’m planning on finishing all my homework today instead of spreading it out so that I have all of Tuesday to play

  • darkfox1

    Laura pls :D

  • ChiffonCake

    Wow, fusing during battle? That sounds really crazy.

    • Barrylocke89

      That’s exactly what I popped down here to say. I can see it being useful in a pinch battle, but it’s not the sort of ability I expected to show up in these games.

    • Ouch My Head Said Dionysus

      That’s actually…really cool. It’ll reduce trial and error (not bringing the right demon to a boss fight), but it’ll also add some complexity!

  • Keima88

    Arghagaraghragha. ArGAHAGA! NEPPU!!!

    Come on Atlus you are killing me here. I am slowly losing it and it get worse each day… Help me! xD.

  • Guest

    thats weird i bought the limited edition 2 days ago from a store near my house are you telling me its not released yet for the rest thats ….awesome!!! lol

    • I’m not sure that’s the kind of thing you should be posting on a public forum…

      Edit. Never mind. Apparently a whole place broke street date XD

  • vileBrenman

    Oh shiz the hype is raising! I think I’ll explode from the hype!
    > Last resort

  • zeta

    in my country a toystore broke its release date I’ll try to get it today

    • resuri

      There’s a chance you could share what country it is? XD

      • zeta

        philippines. and sadly I came back from searching damn it was sold out fast I didnt manage to get one from toysrus and astrovision.

        • resuri

          Do you by any chance know how much? Do you think they will get in trouble for it?

          I think it’s better to erase what country. They might get in trouble. :))

          Edit: Heard that it cost 2500 Php (56.6 USD)

        • piichan

          ick. might as well just wait for it in datablitz. TRU and astro overprice their games.

  • Junko Enoshima

    So you can fuse during battle??? That’s crazy!

    Luckily, I’m pre-ordering tomorrow!

    • Freud_Hater

      Kinda late on the mark, but good luck!

  • Exkaiser

    Hm, with no VIT stat, perhaps physical defense is based on STR, the way MAG and magic resistance usually work? There were a couple other games in the series to add a defense modifier from STR, as I recall.

    • Zeik56

      From what I recall hearing, it does not. In fact, if I recall correctly, strength doesn’t even affect your physical skills, only your standard physical attack.

      • Fidelis

        Well I guess going my usual route of ALL POINTS INTO STRENGTH AND AGILITY ALWAYS wouldn’t be too smart.

        • MrTyrant

          Change it for magic and agility this time.

    • How you survive depends solely on HP. There’s no defense or resistance related stat

  • ShawnOtakuSomething

    I’m so ready for this!!!!!!!

  • infinitia93

    Well I just bought the game yesterday…

    • Haseyo

      I’d be all like “er mah gerd jelly” but seeing how I have double shifts all week until Thursday…it wouldn’t make a difference.

      But at least I could afford it plus many other games. Paid it off today,

  • Tom_Phoenix

    Come on, European publisher (whatever company that may be)!!! You’re killing us here! Tell us what’s going on with the release of SMT IV! Tell us something, ANYTHING!!!

    • Jisgsaw

      Wouldn’t count on that, sadly. It’s really slowly getting to my nerves how pal regions are overlooked by Atlus…

      On the bright side, we at least got a news (that a pal release will come at some point) BEFORE the game even came out in the US. Sad to say, but it’s already a huge improvement for Atlus.

  • The App system sounds pretty cool – if there are no limits on which apps you can get right off the bat. I imagine that would make for a variety of starting builds.

    • You have to build up. For example, you can’t purchase Apps that affect the Demons’ stat growth until you purchase at least one Demon skill expansion App (I think that’s what it is). But when you do unlock it, all the stat-related Apps unlock at once so you don’t have to build up in that sense.

      • Ah, so there’s at least some sort of “skill tree” involved.

        • Kibbitz

          Some are event-based, they won’t unlock until you go far enough.

  • shuyai

    can anyone confirm if it has Japanese voice or english only??

    • Zeik56

      English only, obviously.

  • Guilherme Matheus Silva

    Wait… We can fuse DURING battles?? *o*

  • ragingmerifes

    Fusing demons during battle? Holy moley!!!

  • Zerita Wilson

    so excited for this it comes out on my birthday

  • deadMastershiro

    CRAP! I don’t have money and my 3ds touch screen is messed up. AAAAAAHHHHH!

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