9 Things We Learned From The Recent Persona 5 Famitsuu Article, That You Might Not Know Yet
…Hey, I’m allowed to have a click-bait title now or then too, alright!?
I wanted to make a video on this tonight, but I just realized I’m already too tired, so I’ll try record it tomorrow instead.
For now, I’m giving you my script for that video, in order to share with you my summary on what has been learned this past week:
1.) The heists
The targets of the party are malevolent, corrupted adults. The thief gang invade the inner worlds called „Palaces“ of these people to steal their „heart“ - here actually meaning their wrapped desires and ideals. Inside a palace, the host’s desires take the form of an item called „Treasure“. The party are trying to remove that „treasure“ from the target’s soul, thus forcing them to feel remorse for their actions and sins. However, since the target’s psyche usually has tons of defenses up against the Treasure being removed, getting to it is pretty tricky, hence the dungeons of the game.
The protagonists use a „mysterious“ Smartphone App called „OtherworldNavi“ to find their next targets and access their Palaces. From the description, it seems like „OtherworldNavi“ scans the hearts of people for corrupted desires and also opens portals to their inner Palaces.
3.) The Interrogation
We finally see the face of the woman interrogating the protagonist during the trailers. More on her later, in Makoto Nijima’s section. Personally, my theory right now is that this woman is a member of the Shadow Operatives, due to her demeanor and how unsurprised she seems by supernatural forces being involved. In the beginning of the trailer she threatened the protagonist with death if he doesn’t comply, meaning either that she is an extremist who would kill a minor for justice, or that the protagonist is under suspicions of murder at this part of the game and might end up being sentenced to death unless they bail him out.
4.) Makoto Nijima:
Previously called „Biker Girl“ by Fans, Makoto Nijima is one of the three female party members revealed in the new trailer. And yes, it annoys me a bit that her name is the same as that of the Persona 3 Protagonist in the movies. Anyway, according to the Famitsu article, Makoto is a third year student at Shuujin Academy, the same school the protagonist, Anne and Ryuuji visit. She is the student council president and very headstrong with a strong sense of justice, which apparently has been causing the problems of sorts. Her title in the article is „The Student Council President of Flawless Justice“ and her quote is „It’s true, I too am aiming for the Justice you guys speak of.“ According to director Katsura Hashino, she gets pulled into the events after the protagonist and Co realize that she is lonely and feels like she has no place to belong. Her Persona is called Johanna, and yes, Hashino confirms here that this „Johanna“ is in fact Pope Joan, the legendary female pope and inspiration for the images on the Priestess Tarot Cards. If you wanna know more about her, feel free to check out my video on the Priestess Arcana from a couple of weeks ago. (I had amazing timing there…) Her Persona is also capable of using Nuclear-Elemental Frei-spells for the first time since Persona 2, meaning that this game is not going to conflate Almighty and Nuclear Skills into the same category, but treads them as separate elements.
Interestingly, this character here, who’s name could be either Sae, Saya or Saeru, depending on the reading (Japanese names tend to be stupidly ambiguous with how they’re actually read) shares Makoto’s last name, Nijima, meaning that they’re probably related by blood. It’s gonna be interesting to see how an antagonist and a party member being related by blood is gonna play out here. (She’s the interrogator from the start of the trailer.)
5.) Futaba Sakura
We’ve already been introduced to her during the trailer, so I’ll keep this brief. Futaba’s title is „The Hikikomori Genius Hacker“, and personal quote is „…Navi. I will guide you to victory!“ Her characteristic is an extreme mathematical intelligence, which causes her to be a programming genius, but also incredibly awkward with social interaction. Due to that and a Trauma that caused her strong social anxiety, she stopped leaving her house and has been holed up in her room ever since middle school. The article doesn’t mention which High School she is enrolled in, if any, only that she should technically be a High School First Year, but has never set foot in there. Futaba is also a giant nerd; in one of the screen shots she even calls the protagonist outright “Protagonist”. If that’s how she refers to him in her navigation too, just “Protag”, I can die happy. And yes, Futaba is her given name. Sakura is her family name, not meaning „Cherry Blossom“, but „Helpful Storage“. By the way, Futaba means „sprout“. Again, her Persona is Necronomicon, and according to the director, its futuristic design is meant to symbolize Futaba’s technical genius. He also mentioned that Futaba is one of the most important characters within the party when it comes to the plot, so, look forward to that.
6.) Haru Okumura
Haru is a third year student in Shuujin Academy and, boy, does THAT confuse me. Despite Shuujin being supposed to be a correctional facility, Haru is characterized as a little princess, the daughter of the owner of a famous brand of take-out-food, and very rich and spoiled. She’s good at talking to people, but doesn’t really value others, because of her wealthy upbringing, that has rendered her rather naive to the harsh reality of the world. Her title is „The company Heiress who trusts nobody“ and her quote is „…I will commit myself to this. Whatever I can do, I want to do with commitment.“ Her Persona is Milady de Winter, an Antagonist of the Three Musketeers.
7.) The Velvet Room
According to Katsura Hashino, the Velvet Room this time is supposed to represent the protagonist’s own „Mental Prison“, and Igor is trying to lead him towards a „Rebirth into Freedom“. According to the director, Igor acting and sounding different to how he did in past games has been incorporated into the plot and likewise, Caroline and Justine being twins is plot-relevant as well. It’s also mentioned that Caroline and Justine don’t really have much respect for the Protagonist and treat him like a child.
8.) Day To Day Life, now including double-identity
While many mechanics have been brought back from Persona 1 and 2, a lot of mechanics from Persona 3 and Persona 4 make a return as well. You can still hang out with friends after school, date characters you like (the article only mentions girls, but who knows) and send your protagonist to part time work. There’s also gonna be a story event where they fly abroad, among other things. Hashino said he wants to place huge emphasis on the characters’ double lives here.
9.) Real Life: Morgana has taken over the official Persona 5 News Twitter. (Just a little bit of trivia)
This twitter page was previously hosted by Teddie from Persona 4 and had been written in-character in his speech style ever since it was first started in 2008, but starting last week Thursday night, it was permanently „taken over“ by Morgana of Persona 5. When asked about Teddie’s well-being, Morgana said, „Don’t worry about Teddie, the guy’s doing just fine.“ Fans responded to this with heartfelt farewell messages to Teddie in honor of his „Retirement“ and a lot of good luck wishes for Morgana in the future. Also, the Mangaka responsible for the Persona 4 Ultimax Manga (which, by the way is amazing and better than the game), drew a picture of Teddie and Morgana together, to commemorate the baton-pass.