Persona 5 Will Be About Overcoming Trials To Free Yourself

By Sato . November 26, 2013 . 5:40am

This weekend,  Atlus revealed that the next installment of the Persona series in Persona 5 will be coming to the PlayStation 3 in winter 2014 in Japan. This week’s Dengeki PlayStation magazine shares some additional tidbits of information on the upcoming game.

 

The teaser that was shown during the Persona 5 reveal had what appeared to be five chairs with a ball and chain attached to each one. According to the magazine, these chairs are part of a high school classroom, and the chairs and chains represent the theme of the upcoming game.

 

Additionally, Dengeki reports that Persona 5 will be an RPG that sends a strong message of catharsis, after overcoming trials to free yourself from your shackles. The game will take place in the series’ usual juvenile school setting, but will take on a different mood this time around.

 

We’ll have more news on Persona 5 as it is made available.


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  • Lutfi Ardiansyah

    i already thought that was a school chair , my prediction is almost on the mark XD

  • Hound

    Atlus. You know how to cause us gaming masochists hanging on your words. Let’s begin this doom-laden trauma festival!

  • totoro

    “Different mood”

    Yes ! More doom and gloom pls.

  • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

    I wonder if the chairs are meant to symbolize freeing oneself from the shackles of the school system and the societal and family expectations that accompany it. That would make perfect sense, since it’s a very relevant theme in Japan.

    You could argue that makes it sound like Persona 5 is going to deal with horrible highschool teenage melodrama, but since Atlus picked red to represent the game’s colour, I’m going to assume it’s much more serious than that. I wouldn’t be surprised to see them deal with subjects like high school suicides and the like.

    • Pedro Furtado

      That reminds me of Great Teacher Onizuka, which also dealt with suicide. Not too thrilled about the concept, but then I don’t play Persona for it’s themes.

      • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

        Actually, if they handle this properly, Persona 5′s themes could be really interesting, especially for people that had/have an awkward school life.

        It could be a game that helps a lot of kids that are going through a tough adolescent phase out, and I think that’s something that’s very valuable. Fiction can be a very good teacher.

        • Guest

          interesting I don’t think I can type in a mature way that you do but from what you describe just now. sounds familiar to the way things were when I was younger
          so in this game I might actually feel for the characters if it plays out like the way you said

          • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

            Yeah, plenty of people have led awkward or just outright terrible school lives. This game has the potential to speak to them, and help give them some perspective.

        • DesmaX

          Not gonna lie, Persona 3 did help me when I was on that stage.

          Hope P5 can do the same thing for kids going through that age

          • Testsubject909

            P3 is an excellent game for teenagers to play.

            Many of it’s themes, it’s story elements and it’s characters would easily provide some motivational figures and heroes, if you will, to look up to and to learn from so to better oneself.

        • DesmaX

          Not gonna lie, Persona 3 did help me when I was on that stage.

          Hope P5 can do the same thing for kids going through that age

      • Ouch My Head Said Dionysus

        Persona GTO: Social link where your male teacher takes you to a hotel room and takes pictures of you in your underwear.

        And then puts you in a German suplex.

    • JustThisOne

      I’m expecting bullying to the extreme.

      Or maybe something like Persona 5: Breakfast Club.

    • Shippoyasha

      To be fair, being bound by societal pressure isn’t inherently Japanese nor only to do with bullying. People can have the nicest impression towards you and you could still feel crushing pressure to please and live up to expectations.

      I’m pretty sure almost anyone from any given nation has felt some type of societal pressure. Though yeah, there’s just a certain level of pressure that’s a tad more intense in Japanese/Eastern-Asian schooling where kids are supposed to take Highschool seriously much like how most people start being serious starting from College. Kids in Japan sometimes take stringent entry exams to be accepted into a prestigious school. Even during school, there’s pressure to outperform other students as it can be a fierce competition among elite students. Not to mention the Senpai/Kouhai dynamic where you have to pretty much act as the role model and caretaker for younger generations and school underclassmen. Even without any bullying, there’s plenty of pressures already.

      Also, I’m not entirely sure the suicide aspect is all that unique only to P5 considering there’s been plenty of allusions of that in Persona 4, especially with several social links where it sounded like Yu Narukami stopped several people from going off the rails.

      I’m hoping that the supernatural element of P5 plays with the societal expectations or the rule of law and it becoming increasingly menacing and dire as the series goes on.

      • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

        Right, societal expectations in Asia are especially rough on kids, which was why I singled Japan out. Like every Persona game before it, this one is likely going to be set in Japan, so it makes complete sense for them to tackle a subject that resonates with society.

        As for the suicide aspect… I don’t think it’s unique to Persona 5, but I certainly think there’s reason for P5 to explore it more in depth than other games have. People don’t just wake up one day and decide they want to kill themselves. It’s something that festers inside you, sometimes for years and years, before you act upon it. I don’t think many games have dealt with the hows and whys.

      • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

        Right, societal expectations in Asia are especially rough on kids, which was why I singled Japan out. Like every Persona game before it, this one is likely going to be set in Japan, so it makes complete sense for them to tackle a subject that resonates with society.

        As for the suicide aspect… I don’t think it’s unique to Persona 5, but I certainly think there’s reason for P5 to explore it more in depth than other games have. People don’t just wake up one day and decide they want to kill themselves. It’s something that festers inside you, sometimes for years and years, before you act upon it. I don’t think many games have dealt with the hows and whys.

        • Shippoyasha

          Well, P3 and P4 definitely had pretty obvious allusions towards suicidal tendencies with certain characters, but it was mostly to do with side characters. Maybe they are aiming to bringing some of that personal baggage with the core cast this time. That said, I hope the ‘catharsis’ part delivers. I wouldn’t want a game where it’s too dour or downtrodden. Hell, even though P4 was considered to be a ‘light hearted story’, it was anything but that for huge stretches of its story, especially during its entire second half (at least until Golden came out, which brought back some much needed levity with the emotions including the ski trip and a different ending).

          • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

            You thought Persona 4 was too lighthearted? I have the exact opposite impression of that game, heh. P4′s a great game, but I was sorely disappointed by the direction they went in as opposed to the more serious tone of Persona 3. I think in the case of 4, the anime clichés were a little too overdone for my liking. Golden only made that even worse, IMO.

            But yeah, I do agree that they need to deliver on the catharsis part. Persona, at the end of the day, is a game about hope. I don’t think that should ever change.

          • Ouch My Head Said Dionysus

            Here here. For me, the Persona games were bang-after-bang-after-bang. Then P4 dropped, and I don’t know what happened.

          • Shippoyasha

            As I see it, P4 played the anime tropes, but made fully fleshed out characters even from playing by those tropes. Such as every character having shadow duality, it made all of them much deeper characters for it. I mean, the entire theme of the story is about the public facade, the ‘face you see on TV’, the general stereotyping of people on a superficial level and breaking out of that as there’s depth beneath. I mean, Teddie breaking out of his bear suit was super blatant metaphor for the ultimate theme of P4.

            Plus, they all had personal growth throughout the story so they weren’t stuck just being a stereotype as they felt more fully fleshed out. P3 had wonderful characters but my issue with some P3 characters is that they go through despair and stay there for the duration of the story. P4′s characters having ups and downs made them very relatable and easy to sympathize for me. Especially the way the characters picked themselves and try to live normal lives or just have fun again, that’s kind of how people deal with tragedy or serious times too. I kind of wished P3 characters had more ups and downs later in the story especially where it got gloomy and dark and got mired there until the very end.

          • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

            I agree that Persona 4′s characters were more down to earth than those of 3′s, and I also agree that the duality was an interesting concept in theory. That said, I feel as though a lot of the characterization in P4 doesn’t hold up upon closer examination.

            Some of the metaphors in P4 may have been a little too literal in my opinion. Personally, I thought Kanji and Yukiko’s character arcs were very well done, but the other characters seemed rather unrealistic and could have used a little more subtlety.

            Alternatively, they could have used even closer examination, which was never going to be possible, because P4 is already an 80-hour game.

            This is the problem with Persona 4. It was maybe a little too ambitious for its own good. Persona 3 gave you just enough information and then let the player fill in the gaps with their imagination. Persona 4 attempted to tell you everything in detail, and ultimately, what it did tell you wasn’t enough, because at the end of the day, human beings are far more complex than a game like even Persona can hope to convey effectively.

            That’s one of the crucial elements of telling a good story, in my opinion—knowing how much to tell the reader and how much to leave to their imagination. Persona 3, for all its faults, got that balance down perfectly, while Persona 4 aspired to greater ambitions, but managed to fall short of its goals because they were unrealistic.

            One would have thought that P4G would have at least attempted to rectify this issue by making the Social Links more detailed or adding a considerable amount of meat to each character’s arc. Sadly, instead of building upon the game’s strengths, Atlus chose to coat P4G with fanservice and an unnecessary new character who ultimately isn’t all that important to the story.

          • Chiupon

            I thought Ai Ebihara had a pretty interesting arc, but that’s probably because it personally resonated with me — and from other people know, that kind of scenario does happen quite often to a lot people. Some the of the characters were highly realistic but I feel like some of the fan base would complain a loooot. Like, Yukari, for example — actual real problems, emotional development (or lack thereof) and a whole other variety of traits that made her, as she is often called, one of the more realistic characters — and you can mention her name without someone saying something bitter about how she was a bitch to the moe robot girl.

            Fans like fanservice. I do hope this new game goes back to the P2 era roots and behaves a little bit more maturely, but without sacrificing fun character dynamics and humour.

          • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

            Wow. If you can relate to Ai’s situation, you must have gone through hell. Well, either that or you put other people through hell. :P

          • Chiupon

            b o t h
            i didn’t play p4 until midway during my own ai crisis and it actually helped me grow as a person and develop!

            learnin’ from vidya gaems

          • Shippoyasha

            Isn’t that a bit overboard for P4′s critique though? Surely it wasn’t perfect but I thought the ‘fanservice’ was much needed in P4G considering the second half of the game originally felt like it was losing some of the sense of adventure and camaraderie of the first half. And Marie was a lovely addition though it was somewhat cheesy at times with her plot arc, there was a fair amount that wasn’t entirely revealed about Kanji and Naoto for example and the entire Izanami aspect is a huge mystery. Not to mention we have no idea how Yu Narukami’ home life is truly like before Inaba. I feel there is actually quite a lot of mystery at play with P4. I really loved how the plot wrapped up. I can see how P4 isn’t perfect but I thought it did so many things right and should be commended for that. I actually hope P5 takes after the personal nature of social arcs. I don’t see why telling more story in a straight forward manner in regards to social link story is a negative as that was a huge charm point of the entire game. Even at that, there are a lot of trademark Persona style mythology they mix into it as well.

          • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

            Honestly, I don’t feel fanservice was necessary in the slightest, and we both know that the reason Atlus added it had nothing to do with the story or tone of the game. They tossed it in because $$$, and while that’s tolerable to an extent, it cheapens the brand when you go beyond a certain point.

            (That’s a discussion for another time, though.)

            I’m not saying P4 isn’t a good game, but I don’t think it’s as well designed as Persona 3 was from a narrative standpoint.

            Just to provide one example, I thought it was very odd how the game was supposedly a murder mystery, and yet, here we had a bunch of kids playing amateur detective with pop music blaring in the background.

            Now, I love P4′s soundtrack and I like its characters, too, but I feel like the murder mystery aspect doesn’t fit in with the rest of the game’s tone at all. In the case of P3, the story and characters had a consistent tone to them. In the case of 4, I had a harder time buying into the game’s events.

          • Jirin

            I would agree with that take on Persona 4. In Persona 3 the characters were forced into being heroes by a faceless organization and you could see it taking a psychological toll. In Persona 4 it felt more like ‘Kids playing detective’. Hopefully Persona 5 goes back in the other direction.

            It’s true Persona 3 had a lot of suicide themes, Apathy Syndrome had heavy suicide overtones.

          • Shippoyasha

            Yeah, but kids playing detective didn’t detract from the seriousness of the story. Plus, it would have made little sense for a bunch of kids to set up some professional organization out of the blue. The low key, humble depiction of characters in a humble town was awesome in my opinion.

          • Jirin

            The detective aspect of it didn’t detract from the seriousness, but the characters did kind of take on the attitude of “It is so cool that we get to be the heroes and solve this”. And it seemed odd that none of them ever said anything to the real police.

            My feeling is that when kids are thrown into an adult situation they develop a more adult attitude in reaction to it. In P3 they did, in P4 they didn’t, and that detracted from the characters’ relatability and believability, IMO. Like, the P4 cast would fit perfectly well into a Tales game whereas the P3 cast would not

          • http://amc9988.deviantart.com/ amc99

            Agreed, seeing the chains, Slave word, and the red theme color (which reminds me of blood). I think we will get a persona 1-3 ish feeling again

          • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

            You thought Persona 4 was too lighthearted? I have the exact opposite impression of that game, heh. P4′s a great game, but I was sorely disappointed by the direction they went in as opposed to the more serious tone of Persona 3. I think in the case of 4, the anime clichés were a little too overdone for my liking. Golden only made that even worse, IMO.

            But yeah, I do agree that they need to deliver on the catharsis part. Persona, at the end of the day, is a game about hope. I don’t think that should ever change.

          • karldeck

            I thought every character from Persona 3 was somewhat suicidal.

        • Shippoyasha

          Well, P3 and P4 definitely had pretty obvious allusions towards suicidal tendencies with certain characters, but it was mostly to do with side characters. Maybe they are aiming to bringing some of that personal baggage with the core cast this time. That said, I hope the ‘catharsis’ part delivers. I wouldn’t want a game where it’s too dour or downtrodden. Hell, even though P4 was considered to be a ‘light hearted story’, it was anything but that for huge stretches of its story, especially during its entire second half (at least until Golden came out, which brought back some much needed levity with the emotions including the ski trip and a different ending).

    • Pinwheel

      Interestingly enough, the color red also represents Persona 2.

      • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

        That might be reading into it a bit too much, IMO. At this point, I think Atlus are okay with pretending P1 and P2 don’t exist. :P

        • Pinwheel

          Wouldn’t necessarily say so. After all, Persona 4 Arena did have some implications of the P2 villain returning.

    • konsama

      Yeah, the red color ringed some bell and made me remember P2IS, which has a lot more serious tone than P3 and 4 had, along being a more violent color at difference of the high blue and yellow on P3 and P4 yellow usage.

  • Nexus

    Sad that they aren’t going for a more adult setting (college, work office and whatnot) like a whole lot of us expected after their work on Catherine, but I’m sure that whatever Atlus has in store for P5 will be great.

    • EQeE

      What makes you think that Highschool can’t be adult setting. Hell, I have seen plenty of serious anime that had highschool setting. What you are asking for would kill the franchise and it would basically look like this(Look Bellow). Tought, P2 was so damn good, but it also had it.

      • Shippoyasha

        Yeah. I mean, I can see why people may want differing age groups and all, but there’s something to be said for the positives of young protagonists being done well in great anime/games. I think Persona can make a lineage out of making excellent school aged characters, while they can branch out their other SMT related brands and have them deal with other kinds of age groups and peoples and settings. Plus, it’s not like having young characters means you can’t have older characters in your party. Maybe future Persona games can have more older characters join the fray in the party or the mystery-solving team as well.

      • Nexus

        What I meant about changing the setting is that it opens up plenty of possibilities in narratives that you don’t normally see in stories set in high school. In Catherine we had a lot of great themes going around such adult fears, adultery, stress from everything that society expects from a grown adult; obviously not something that a teenager would normally experience at their age. And seeing how heavy themes fit right at home in the MegaTen titles, it’d be great to see the Persona Team work with them on a Persona game. But I suppose that’s best left for their other series or sub-series like The Golden Playhouse(?). And considering how Persona is a more softer and lighter spin-off, it makes sense to not make things too dark.

        But like I said, I’m up for whatever Atlus throws at me.

        • Shippoyasha

          I’m guessing the Persona dev team still wants to appeal towards younger gamers. Unless they sense there’s a huge number of older demographics to cater to.. Maybe it’s not a correct analogy, but I think taking a huge generation leap is not done very lightly such as how Pokemon fans still haven’t gotten that ‘serious Pokemon’ fans have been clamoring for at least a decade now.

          • SeventhEvening

            The problem with that is if you look at the first three games in the series. The first game had a gimmick of persona fusing and high school students, but we didn’t start out with Pokemon Red and here we are at Pokemon X. Pokemon was a game for children that had fans that got older, and the older fans clamored for something serious. Persona is the exact opposite. A dark spin-off title that was targeting an older demographic that had an even darker pair of follow-up titles, IS and EP. Then there was the lighter, more kid friendly, Kaneko free Persona 3, which was a good game but….. well, then there was Persona 4 which was an even better game but….. Both of them are so light and friendly compared to the series roots, with Persona 4 being plain saccharine at times.

            I’d love for Persona 5 to be a return to form. A return to the roots of the series. But I suppose with how SMTIV had many hard-core elements stripped out (pay to escape game overs!) and the heinous DLC (pay real money to powerlevel!); as well as the fact that Persona 4: Dancing all Night is an actual thing that actually exists; AND P5 will have Shigenori Soejima, a high school setting and Shouji Meguro, I should probably bury those hopes.

      • Altin

        I just had one of my hardest cringes ever.

      • ChiffonCake

        >kill the franchise
        That’s quite the slippery slope if I’ve ever seen one.

      • SeventhEvening

        I don’t think it would have been like that at all. Persona 2 is a phenomenal game and it doesn’t rely on high school drama or anything. Even in Innocent Sin, where a majority of the cast are high schoolers, that’s only setting the stage. Most of the time you’re running around the whole city, dealing with an immediate and incredibly terrifying threat. Only P3 and P4 have the social links and moe-moe funtime highschool setting. That Persona 5 picture is about as fair as if I photoshopped Persona 5 on some picture from K-on, which, given the trend so far, seems a more likely direction.

    • Nitraion

      Hmm yeah maybe persona theme is always school but who knows..
      we might get older party member again like persona 2..
      Maybe teacher as party member?

      • LightZero

        I certainly hope so. I also hope the teen cast also have serious stuff going on with them like in P2. I can no longer relate to the typical teenager stuff that P4 had. I’ve been through all of that drama along with college and even grad school. I like to have more serious and adult like issues being apart of the story.

  • Randgriz

    I was hoping they would advance from the Apathy theme, this is brilliant!

  • Nitraion

    I can’t wait to see Screenshots,battle system flow and of course video of this game

  • Raze

    School chair and chained

    I think the trial here means Final Exam and University Test

    Thinking about what if I score below or what if I don’t pass this test…That’s pretty dark atmosphere right?

    lol

    Either way i’m happy Atlus stay with High School setting

    • ChiffonCake

      Considering that suicide rates amongst students in Japan are somewhat tied to this topic, that’s actually a possibility.

  • Go2hell66

    i wonder how far along development is for this game, they made us wait 2months for a teaser that didn’t show us anything

    • Shippoyasha

      Probably for years I’m betting. Atlus teased P5 development for a while now.

      Consider that the game comes out in Winter 2014. Meaning it could be November/December. So that’s not THAT long a wait until the game is actually released, probably with an entirely new gameplay engine, full voiceovers, gameplay balances and anime cutscenes and all. I really hope they show something off at the 2014 E3. And of course, they absolutely HAVE to show something at least by Tokyo Game Show 2014, considering it won’t be long after that where they’re releasing the game.

    • Arizato
  • Nanaki

    Battle Royale… o.o
    Hah! I’m glad they’re sticking to the school setting,

  • http://resettears.wordpress.com/ Reset Tears

    Reading this reminds me much of something I loved about Persona 4–just the sense that every single character has their own issues to deal with, and there’s always a lot more to people than you can assume from first impressions.

    “a strong message of catharsis, after overcoming trials to free yourself from your shackles”
    This can go a wide variety of ways, but it makes me think of how people make mistakes–and it can be difficult to forgive yourself, when you’re haunted by the choices you’ve made. Persona 4 had elements of this in some of its social links; I’d be curious to see this sort of thing expanded more in a main storyline. It’s rare for video games to deal with topics that nuanced.

    • Testsubject909

      Looking at your picture though. I can’t help but think all you really want to talk about are Murders.

      So I imagine you want this to be Battle Royale.

      • http://resettears.wordpress.com/ Reset Tears

        Don’t tell anyone I said this, but– (URK!!)

  • Akemi Nakajima

    Can’t wait for more news.

  • $61526767

    Definitely cannot wait to see more. The atmosphere itself interest me indeed. Still, overcoming trials to free yourself continues to give me theories about the story. Either way, I expect P5 to blow me away and continue to play it more than 5 times. lol

  • junir

    Seems like the entire P3/P4 team is back. Can’t wait to see what they can do on the PS3. P4 has aged incredibly well.

    • Arcana Wiz

      what?

      • junir

        Whoops, I should have added P3/P4 development team! The writer, director and composer are the same. Omg some tosser downvoted me. Wah :-<

        • Arcana Wiz

          yeah, now it makes sense.

  • Manny Being Manny

    The most important thing is that it was announced to still be high school. Thats the thing I was worried most after Megaten 4 and Catherine… now that we know its high school, I can look forward to it a lot more.

    • Ouch My Head Said Dionysus

      But Persona is always high school! With the arguable exception of Eternal Punishment.

      • Testsubject909

        A Journalist who teams up with her celibate boxing friend, a righteous cop and a suspicious looking tech-head possible hacker. Or a rag-tag team of teenagers.

        Which one sounds more appealing?

        • Ouch My Head Said Dionysus

          Hi five! Taiwanese Wire Tapping Blackmailer!

          • Testsubject909

            Hehehe…

            Y’know. I wonder if the link to his site works… I mean it’s written right there in the intro.

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oNazoPO-3-w

            Also. One of the rare games to feature Hitler.

          • ChiffonCake

            Hitler was in Innocent Sin, not Eteral Punishment.

          • Testsubject909

            M’bad, M’bad.

            Still.

            Hitler.

  • http://shadious.tumblr.com/ Vince

    Being a slave to me is also akin to the hesitation, and the fear of stepping out of one’s comfort zone.One who cannot go to the distance, as he or she let him or herself shackled.

    • Testsubject909

      And then there’s me who at one period of time in my life chose to hump people’s legs as a means of greeting.

      Specifically strangers whom friends would introduce me to.

      Because I thought it’d be entertaining to see what sort of reaction they’d have.

      I also monkeyed around in a bus because a bus is always so sad and boring. Everyone’s busy, pre-occupied, stuck in their little bubble, watching out the window for their exit, worried they’ll miss it or just wanting to rapidly get in and out.

      Though I once fell from the hanging bar and unto the chairs chin first. So I stoppped monkeying around and instead starting to just socialize by asking personal questions to complete strangers in the bus instead.

      • Testsubject909

        Morale of the story:

        Don’t be totally unchained unless you’re ready to suffer a bit.

        And I mis-wrote. It’s my shin. Not my chin.

  • Ouch My Head Said Dionysus

    Please be bleak. Please please please be bleak.

    • Slayven19

      Elaborate on what you mean by bleak please.

      • Ouch My Head Said Dionysus

        I want some Persona 1/2 levels of horror-tragedy up in here. Student body presidents sucking out souls at the high school dance. The police and government being “in on it”. Crazed stalkers. Shady business executives with black, empty eye sockets hidden behind sunglasses!

        Or at least another (different) deconstruction of the RPG party concept ala Strega. I think that was my favorite thing about P3.

  • DesmaX

    That’s Persona, all right.

    I like the theme they chose, and Atlus is a company that can deliver on that

  • ChiffonCake

    A little disappointed that they’re going with the high schol setting again, but the different atmosphere sounds promising.

    • Testsubject909

      There’s always Persona 2 Eternal Punishment.

      • LightZero

        True but it would be nice to have another adult oriented game. I guess the only thing we can hope for is a few adult playable characters like in Innocent Sin.

  • Testsubject909

    So… Battle Royale Persona?

    Anyways. My guess on the whole balls and chains being social restraints were probably a safe bet. I mean that’s what Persona is always all about. Humanity, society and how it works and what it is.

    So a game centered around breaking out of those social restraints, constraints, obligations, limitations, sounds just normal. Technically speaking Persona 4 did that as well with confronting one’s shadow which you can view as said balls and chains limiting yourself from moving forward on a personal, emotional and psychological level.

  • Wolfs_Rain

    Back to high school again? Why does almost every JRPG have to be about teenagers? I know they make up the target audience, but if Japanese teens will buy Metal Gear Solid even though it’s about a bunch of middle-aged dudes, I think they’d tolerate a Persona cast that’s a bit older. Oh well, maybe there’ll be a Persona 5:Eternal Punishment and we’ll finally get another adult protagonist.

    Nevertheless, I’m sure it’ll be an awesome game, and it’s nice they’re still trying to bring something fresh to the setting.

    • Manny Being Manny

      Because thats what the Japanese anime/jrpg fanbase wants. They’re making the game for Japan, not Westerners.

      If you look at anime sales, you always see that college and older series sell like crap compared to high school series, for example.

      • Manny Being Manny

        Plus, heres an interview with the Persona directors on why they use the high school setting:

        http://img138.imageshack.us/img138/2339/4b1z.jpg

        • Wolfs_Rain

          Hm, fair enough. I guess I can accept that if it’s for purely artistic reasons rather than about pandering. Still, I don’t think it would hurt to experiment with the formula in different settings.

          • Chip

            The keypoint here is relationships. In Japanese university life, the pressure to focus on building a career is immensely higher. Most people don’t even date during those years. As bad as academic pressure can be in highschool for Japanese students, it’s still the time when you can develop the most variety of relationships.

        • Blerg

          Cozy Okada and Kazuma Kaneko talking about Persona 2, I believe
          Your point, however, is still made though

      • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

        Because thats what the Japanese anime/jrpg fanbase wants.

        That’s highly debatable, considering that some of the best-selling RPGs this generation have featured older or mature characters. Fire Emblem, Bravely Default, SMTIV. The only reason we’re assuming that high school stuff is the only solution is because no one’s ever really done a university setting effectively.

        • DyLaN

          Wht about Golden Time?

        • Zero_Destiny

          Well Flynn was only 18 though and did have that school uniform DLC lol but that’s not really a big deal or anything, 18 is old enough to start University I guess.

          For Persona there’s also the factor to consider that the series was supposedly meant to be more “hip” and open to the “main stream” then the original Shin Megami Tensei titles at the time.

          Trying to bring in younger and less experienced RPG players then what SMT 1 and SMT 2 could bring in so they continued to go off the SMT if direction and made part of the focus school life. Even in P1 and P2 without the social links school life played a significant role in the characters relations and worries and friendships.

          I’d say it was definitely an intentional design choice on part of the creators and helped to differentiate Persona from Shin Megami Tensei proper and Devil Summoner.

          Though by this point considering how popular Persona is and how it’s essentially the main star of SMT now they could probably do away with school life, but really it would just have to be a matter of why. It’s been part of what made the series what it was, so while possible, I think the creators would need to feel a good enough reason to do it.

          • LightZero

            Personally I prefer the approach that P2 had with the characters. It even included two adult cast in IS while EP entire cast were adults except Tatsuya. Even then they all had rather mature and serious issues that were intriguing.

          • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

            Right, Flynn and co. were 18-ish themselves, but there was no school setting, and they didn’t really act like high school students either, which was mainly my point. :)

            But yeah, I do see what you’re saying about needing a good enough reason to move away from a setting that has worked for so many Persona games in a row.

    • Tincho Kudos

      Well to be fair, the only persona that has a protagonist not in high school was Eternal Punishment with Maya, the other ones always had teenagers/highschool students as protagonist.
      Altough, I see your point I would also like that.

    • dawnbomb

      its a series based on highschool life. removing the highschool seems kind of stupid.

  • Tincho Kudos

    I just hope it is more dark than Persona 4. It was a great game, but too light for being a persona game.
    So far, the premise has potential

    • Testsubject909

      I believe there’s a graph out there depicting the fate of a variety of characters from Atlus games set in the SMT world, the Persona world and the Soul Hacker/Devil Summoner world, showing that Persona 4′s MC is the happiest motherfucker of them all.

  • Warren

    Yes a high school, if it ain’t broke don’t fix it. Besides playing in a high school seems more fun. I’m in college and i would have no time to be saving the world with all the presentations and test i have to do.

    • OuchiGouchi

      somehow i can relate

    • SeventhEvening

      As a teacher in Korea, which has a very similar system to Japan, these kids have less free time in middle school than I did in college. Between school and academies, students go from 8am to 10pm every day. Middle schoolers go until 8 or 9 and have huge exams every couple months. I can’t realistically imagine any of my students saving the world.

      • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

        So Persona 5 will be about the Powerpuff Girls?

        • SeventhEvening

          That wasn’t the plot of Persona 4?

          • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

            …wow. Now that you mention it…

      • tubers

        Can Korean teachers physically hurt sleeping students? If not, then they can probably sleep through some hours in those classes during the day and save the world during the night.

        You from South or North?

        • SeventhEvening

          South. I’m an academy teacher, so there is some grey area. Physical punishment is allowed if the parents are OK with it. But I don’t do it. If my students sleep, I do take their chair. It is pretty hard to sleep if you’re standing up.

  • junir

    Persona 3 – Blue -> Dark and Somber
    Persona 4 – Yellow -> Bright and Cheerful
    Persona 5 – Red -> Anger and Rage?

    What’s most interesting is how the color-tone reminds me of Persona 2:Innocent Sin. Perhaps an indicator of the direction the game might take?

  • Martian Wong

    I am under the impression that it is about P3 protagonist freeing himself from High school /Tartarus

  • Pockystix

    Hopefully we get FeMC from the start this time lol

    • SerendipityX

      This is all I want Atlus please, does a girl have to get on her knees and beg? *puppy eyes*

    • Akemi Nakajima

      As much as I respect this wish.

      Always prepare for disappointment.

    • ShawnOtakuSomething

      or make your own MC….just saying

      • MrTyrant

        THIS! thousand time this. I want to edit my MC and see him/her in the events of the games or cutscenes.

        • Akemi Nakajima

          *sighs* Then we’ll lose the symbolism protagonist.

          I think they’ll only allow us to change clothes.

          • MrTyrant

            The symbolism protagonist will be his default setting like Pokemon X or Y and that doesn’t mean you cannot edit them, at least to see him/her in the normal events and battles. In the animated cutscenes they can show us their default looks.

          • Akemi Nakajima

            It’s actually cool if you’re thinking about it haha.

          • Detrimont

            but if they did that, people would rage as to why the MC doesn’t look they way they made them in the anime cutscenes

          • Testsubject909

            How about just customization.

            Like being able to go to a hair stylist to dye your hair, change your hairstyle. Change your clothings. Get a tan.

            With that level of superficial customization. Then the character can start with a preset appearance and THEN you can choose to alter him/her to your preference.

            But at least it’ll define a very specific set starting appearance that is canon.

            Plus, Persona is more into making a character that is a character first and an avatar next. But in close combination. And it does it well enough.

            Because it’s pretty damn near impossible to make a true Avatar character outside of a Pen and Paper RPG because there will always be some character defining elements that will have the odd or high chance of differing from your mental image of your avatar character.

          • MrTyrant

            As long as I can dress him as a banchou Im ok with that either way. Like I said, similar to how you edit in Pokemon but at least with the posiblity of removing or adding a damn hat lol

          • MrTyrant

            I would want a pen and paper RPG with more character development/events like Persona. Just saying.

            and I don’t know why discuss is telling me now that this is a new post when I already read it.

      • PERSONA 5!!!! (Umar)

        Indeed , he is already a silent protag in any case

  • kassandra

    please let it be something like persona 1!.. i don’t want to play scooby doo the videogame again..

  • Rake

    >People saying P3 MC is gonna return.

    No, save that for P6, make this game stand alone with a new MC. We need one more MC in the mix~

    • Brunstad Exicuren

      I want him to return bit not as a companion NPC, but as a replacement of Igor, after the original VA died, I really don’t want a recast of the character, i rather see the P3 MC taking Igor’s place since, you know, what happens to him.

      • Detrimont

        i would rather Marie take over

        • Brunstad Exicuren

          But he has the power to replace Igor and the expertise to combine stuff, not to mention that i have never played P4G just the original.

          • Detrimont

            the thing is, if they just bring him back in 6, just to replace Igor, the story around it would just make no sense, unless something happens in arena 2, but still

          • Rake

            For him to replace Igor he would need to be a servant of Philemon.

          • Brunstad Exicuren

            Well we don’t know what they’ll do with P4AU or with Margaret’s story, I’m just giving my opinion, mainly because it’s my favorite MC, all the stuff about bringing back and well, lets say that his physical body is no longer functional (although i wouldn’t have any problem of a zombie P3 MC).

    • Testsubject909

      Or save that for never?

  • Jirin

    I figured the slavery theme is this installment’s version of Apathy Syndrome.

  • junkpuyo

    So it’s Dangan Ronpa?

  • SirRichard

    “A strong message of catharsis” and the talk of breaking free from shackles says to me that it’s going to be an angrier game than the last two, probably about breaking free of society’s expectations and the good and bad that comes with that.

    This is going to be good.

  • ShawnOtakuSomething

    so you’ll be your own MC?

  • MrTyrant

    I think it’s an interesting premise. I was thinking on something like this back then when I was playing the old Persona games.
    Not something like a Prison break but something more methaphorical, I believe there will be some characters with some sort of adiction but not drugs. Like for example you are a prisoner of what people expect you to be and not what you really want to be for example. There are a lot of kind of chains nowadays in our society that keep up us restrained.

  • Guilherme Matheus Silva

    “Overcoming trials to free yourself from your shackles”

    History of my life ‘-’

  • Ferrick

    “Overcoming trials to free yourself from your shackles”

    so this persona is about marriage ?

    • MrTyrant

      Hahaha. It can be, if you have an adult character with that sort of problem.

      • Ferrick

        kinda explains the symbolism when more chair appear, more chains appear too XD

    • Aunna Terrell

      So one character’s shackled to an arranged marriage with a future murder victim or the murderer?

    • karldeck

      Teen Pregnancy?

  • PERSONA 5!!!! (Umar)

    Sounds nice. I’m hoping for a darker take on Persona. Bring in some Nocturne and DDS type flavor into the game. Don’t mind high school setting at all, Persona is one of the few games where even though the characters are teens, they aren’t completely repulsive.For the most part most of the characters ooze charisma and charm and maturity…

  • Exkaiser

    I wish I weren’t so burnt out on Persona. I’d really like to be excited for P5, but. .. Between P4A, the anime series, the P3 movie, and the two new spin-offs, I’m really sick of the franchise.

    • Akemi Nakajima

      Hope to see you again next year enjoying Persona 5.

    • Testsubject909

      I’d prefer to think of it as “I’m really sick of Persona 4″

      • Exkaiser

        I wish it weren’t true… I did love P4, but the fatty cash-cow aspect of it post-release is sickening.

    • LightZero

      I can understand although I’m more burnt out with the P3/P4 stuff. If P5 can be more like P2 it automatically got my complete attention. Either way I’m still excited about P5.

  • Kaetsu

    This gives me a Dangan Ronpa vibe. Hopefully it’s way different.

    • Akemi Nakajima

      This gives everyone a little Dangan Ronpa vibe.

      But I hope you trust Atlus taking a unique direction in its own way.

      Nevermind, you edited it.

      • karldeck

        …have to watch/play Dangan Ronpa.

      • Kaetsu

        Yeah my original post made it seem like I have no faith in Atlus. I’m sure the’ll do something completely new and brilliant.

        • Akemi Nakajima

          Hahaha.
          I might do something like that too actually

  • Yan Zhao

    Whatever the game is about or the underlying message may be. One thing’s for sure: This game is bound to be awesome.

  • RegReach

    can i get a lback guy

  • Niyari

    back to the roots! can’t wait

  • MrSirFeatherFang

    The stronger will you have, the more you will face various trials. Although you can choose to escape, “Trial” has the message for you to conquer yourself.

    I’m guessing P5 will be… a RPG shoot’em up! This is gonna be so rad.

    • Testsubject909

      Is this google translate engrish?

      • MrSirFeatherFang

        I made some typos… I associate the word “Trial” with a certain stage from a game that’s all.

      • AnotherTime

        MrSirFeatherFang has been playing Ikaruga.

  • PartEleven

    Hmm, sligihtly disappointed that it’s set in a high school again, but I understand that’s what appeals to their core demographic. It’s cool that they explore different themes with each main installment though.

  • http://radiantloki.blogspot.com/ Mark Dinh

    “You are slave” I’m sorry, that still cracks me up xD Hahahhaa

  • 07thCrow

    I cannot wait for this! Happy, happy, happy! And, seeing as how red appears to be P5′s official color, I wonder if Sho Minazuki from P4A has any relation to P5?

  • Rake

    >People are going to boycott this game if it doesn’t have a Female MC option.

    …What.. Yes, something like this is going around..

    • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

      Why is that such a surprise? I could see women wanting the option to play as a female character. People were upset when Persona 4 Golden didn’t include the option after P3P introduced it. That was a step backwards for Atlus.

      • Akemi Nakajima

        I could see why women wanting the option to play as a female character, is very reasonable.
        But calling P4G a step backward is a bit shallow. They already explained their own reason.

        • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

          One can come up with any number of reasons that one wants. For example, the director of SMTIV said that the reason there’s no female option is because SMT games have “typically had male leads”. That doesn’t really amount to any kind of reason, IMO.

          You could make any number of similar excuses for Persona 3, but the fact is that P3P had the option for a female lead and was a better game for it.

          I don’t see how it’s “shallow” to call a publisher out for ignoring half their audience. Atlus games in particular are played both by guys and girls.

          • Akemi Nakajima

            Hmm, I could agreed with lots of your point but I don’t think Atlus is ignoring “half their audience” (fangirls) IMO. They never stated Persona series is for both boys and girls now that you think about.

            It’s natural that the fans wish for what they want, and that’s a disadvantages for a popular series.

          • Rake

            It would take more time to make a Female MC route, that’s if people want to have a different experience while playing as the Female MC. I have no problem with having a Female MC, but we have to keep in mind that Atlus has a due date, and that they put as much effort as they can into a game in said amount of time. Maybe in the future we can see a P5 port (Lol, bound to happen.) with a Female MC.

          • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

            Right, as I said, you could come up with any number of reasons not to include an option for a female protagonist. But at some point, Atlus need to ask themselves how important their female audience is to them. As of now, I’m getting the impression they don’t think it’s very important.

          • revenent hell

            If a female is put in it should have value in more ways than aesthetics.

            The interactions should be different with the cast and NPC’s….

            I don’t entirely disagree with you but being a female in any game should matter especially for games like Persona or any SMT game where choices and actions, even how “demons” relate to the MC(some in persona could only be charmed by a female) have consequences….

            Yes, P3P did it, and did it well (thank god) years after the original mind you, but that doesn’t mean all the games to follow have to do it.
            As a female I don’t feel left out because a good game is a good game regardless of what gender the MC is.

            People want diversity in games? Where’s the transgendered MC? Or a Black MC? male and female mind you? It can go on and on…..

            Actually I prefer playing as ethnicities other than my own (never owned a white Barbie ha and ha) So that is something I’d prefer.

          • http://www.ihasnowebsitez.com Satonaka CP-Four
          • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

            That is more or less the reason, yeah.

      • MrTyrant

        For me the change of interface and not the answer chapter was the step backward in P3P. While I always desired more new events in the original story I’m glad that P4 Gold did that for me.

    • revenent hell

      Im just going to copy/paste this to these types of comments from now on…
      You know I am a female….and perhaps im odd but I really don’t care who or what the MC is as long as the story and game play are good (or excellent :D )…..

      While the option to choose is cool to sometimes its not always done well. Sure choose you character’s sex but does that change events or how NPC’s regard you? Not in quite a few games ive played and that alone is irritating enough to keep me playing as a male.

      I enjoy the game for what it is. Sure I may play as a guy but does that detract the fun for me? No. Sure, equality is great and all but it doesn’t matter if its not something that brings value to the table. If the G** D*** NPC’s cant even regard me as a chick I feel its valueless. (personally I think this particular game franchise would overall do a ton better in those regards but still…)

      I want the choices I make to matter in the games I play.

      A lot of people will say it shouldn’t be hard at all to supplement a female in a males case for this particular game type and maybe it wouldn’t be but by not having a female as the MC dose not in any way detract from the greatness of the game. While it might even add to it in some peoples view I still think its kind of ignorant to say ” I wont buy this game or series anymore because I don’t see my gender as the MC” all’s that gets you is missing out on a great (potentially) game.

      There are a lot of games out there where you can choose what gender you are….. just because its out there doesn’t mean it HAS to be in every game.

      If people want to boycott the game go for it but know not every female cares as much as “you” about gender as long as the game is good.

      • Akemi Nakajima

        Tottally this.
        You made my day.

        • revenent hell

          Im jut so done with people proclaiming the MC “better be female” its so ignorant.
          Yeah its nice to have but in most games I have played where the MC is female its almost like it doesn’t matter what gender you chose your still treated as a man.
          Sure a game or two has done it before and maybe they have done it well, but its not mandatory to be in the game… Its not like females aren’t represented as characters in most of the games from Persona one and on….
          Ok so they aren’t the MC for most of the time BUT THEY ARE THERE.
          Chill and enjoy the game everything doesn’t have to be politically correct to be good.

          Glad I made your day :D

      • Rake

        Lets make babies.

        • revenent hell

          OK!

          • Arcana Wiz

            …well, that escalated quickly

          • M’iau M’iaut

            Fang will always have space in his harem for you.

  • Nice Boat Quatro

    Catharsis for every trial? I guess the character will go through a lot of stress

  • Hinataharem

    Now all it needs are subtle references to the earlier games and I’m good. Needs more MegaTen Online

  • KoRLumen

    Can’t wait to hear the theme song.

  • Kami nii

    I’m ready for p5 :)

  • http://amc9988.deviantart.com/ amc99

    Persona 3 purple, dark atmosphere
    Persona 4 yellow, Happy atmosphere
    Persona 5 Blood, ??? atmosphere

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