Atlus had spent roughly 5 years as nothing but a fully-dependent brand of Index Corp. Even before that, they had been suffering from money-troubles. (Well, duh, otherwise they would never have been bought out in first place!) And now, they have been suddenly made back into their own company again, meaning they have to manage their own budget again and work with it. Do you realize how difficult this is going to be for them?
In other words: Atlus NEEDS cash to stay strong right now. If they want to keep developing SMT, P5 and any other new games they have in store, they NEED to gather a strong budget, using their pre-existing licenses.
THAT’S why there’s 3 new games featuring P3 and P4 (Their two most profitable games ever). THAT’S why they let Aniplexx make a P3 Movie Series and another P4 Anime. THAT’S why there’s such overabundant amounts of merchandise for these popular games.
Atlus are *not* just being greedy. The truth is, they NEED a reliable, non-risky source of money right now in order to survive and P3 and P4 just offer themselves, since they have a very strong, reliable and loyal Fanbase that still hasn’t died down in Japan and is still strong with buying merchandise.
No matter what it looks like, the Index-Corp. scandal was a HEAVY blow to the brand/company and now they need to learn to stand on their own two feet again. They cannot afford making risky moves right now.
Persona 2’s Japanese fanbase is weak, and I mean incredibly weak. Most fans don’t even seem to realize these games were a thing that existed. That’s why the P2 license, as much as Atlus themselves love the duology, is NOT a reliable source of income right now. And SMT? SMT is popular, but very restricted in it’s appeal, meaning you would have to rely on a very narrow demographic, which would be a stupid move if you are trying to build a budget. P3 and P4, however, are household names, especially P4, because the first Anime made it known beyond the boundaries of just the hardcore RPG gaming audience, meaning they can draw an audience they would usually never reach in with it. It’s the safest way to gather a strong budget for future projects that they have available right now.
So, you want new content? New games, new experiences, characters, systems, gameplay, a new story? Fine. But these things don’t appear out of nowhere. Videogames are *expensive* to develop.
So if you want Atlus to continue outputting quality games, you WILL have to accept that they WILL be forced to milk the cash-cow every once in a while.
Atlus are, first and foremost, a business, and not a magical entity that grants your gaming wishes as you please out of thin air. Do NOT brand-mark them as “Destroyed by the Persona Casuals” or "Fallen From Grace“ just because they are gathering money that they need so they can continue catering to YOUR gaming needs in a fashion that isn’t just *affordable* but *high-quality*.