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SMT III Nocturne Is Constantly Building Up to Its Endings

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SMT III Nocturne Endings

A common thread for Shin Megami Tensei games is to offer multiple endings, and SMT III Nocturne (and its HD Remaster) is no different. These are incredibly thoughtful titles. Each one forces you to examine what is going on in its world. Maybe you consider the sorts of decisions your avatar would make, based on the personality you impose on them. Perhaps you think about what you would do. But the key here is that you aren’t going with a general alignment, like you would with SMT IV or other installments. Rather, SMT III Nocturne involves Reasons, inspired by different factions. In addition to the questions it proves, this sort of arrangement builds up the game further since you aren’t immediately going with a traditional “chaotic” or “lawful” choice.

smt iii nocturne endings

Editor’s Note: There will be spoilers for most of the SMT III Nocturne endings below. No spoilers are presented in any of the images.

As a Demi-fiend, players aren’t “human” enough to develop a Reason to shape the world. Rather, you’re a chosen one with a will strong enough to help one rebuild the Vortex World. Each person who does have a Reason will essentially impose their desires on the world around them. But because there is that selfish element, there’s more nuance to what’s happening with each one. We have a better grasp of why things will happen. By following certain people’s paths, SMT III Nocturne offers constant support for the possible worlds.

Isamu is a perfect example. He has a devotion to his teacher both before and after the Conception. But while his friends were by his side before, after he finds himself alone. He watches as his friend, the chosen Demi-fiend, constantly succeeds while he fails. He’s constantly imprisoned while trying to make a difference. He eventually “escapes” to the Amala Network and decides to go it alone. And as he embraces that with Noah, he works to a world where everyone will be alone. We can see how Isamu ended up isolated, and he embraced that. So much so that he rejected everyone else throughout his personal journey and ending.

isamu

Likewise, we see Chiaki and Hikawa’s experiences shape their stories and SMT III Nocturne endings. And, in a way, I like to think each one represents a different element of control. Chiaki is desperate for it after the Conception. She’s managing to survive in the Vortex World. However, she describes it as a “nightmare.” We see someone desperate for a chance to feel safe. And for her, a world in which she sides with Baal and sees the strong dominating the week allows her that control. Even if it means watching her back, she sees it as a sense of security. With Hikawa, we have a cult leader who already held control. He is established in both worlds. And accordingly, his path and ending works toward precision. It’s someone already in charge of a machine, the Cult of Gaea, applying it on a grander scale.

While these Reasons are, for lack of a better word, reasonable and plausible, choosing other options fit as well. Which shows exactly how expertly Atlus crafted SMT III Nocturne. All of the above make sense and lead to conclusions the game builds up to. You can clearly see how to get on their paths, as all you have to do is agree with people. But if you reject that, it feels as natural due to the way the Lady in Black and Lucifer interject themselves along the journey. Not accepting anyone’s Reason and being confident about that choice gives us perhaps the “best” chaotic ending. Things return to what they were, with a hint that things might not be over. If you aren’t confident, the chaotic Vortex World filled with demons remains unchanged. But if you complete the Labyrinth of Amala, you embrace your newfound power and join Lucifer against the Great Will. Again, all three are foreshadowed in the same way as the standard Reasons.

smt iii nocturne endings

Which is a good way to look at the SMT III Nocturne endings in general. Atlus is constantly foreshadowing what could happen. Even with all of the possible Reasons you could support. There’s constant support that makes them all make sense. It shows how well crafted its narrative is.

SMT III Nocturne is available for the PS2, while SMT III Nocturne HD Remaster is available for the PS4, Switch, and PC.

Jenni Lada
Jenni is Editor-in-Chief at Siliconera and has been playing games since getting access to her parents' Intellivision as a toddler. She continues to play on every possible platform and loves all of the systems she owns. (These include a PS4, Switch, Xbox One, WonderSwan Color and even a Vectrex!) You may have also seen her work at GamerTell, Cheat Code Central, Michibiku and PlayStation LifeStyle.