Since everyone else has been bombarding you with questions about what you dislike about Persona 5 in comparison to Persona 4 and past games, now, is there anything you LOVE about Persona 5? You claimed that you like Persona 5 in one of your responses on your asks, but it seems to me that isn't really the case.
By god, yes! Yes, I DO love Persona 5! It’s a brilliant game, the best in the series objectively seen, even! I could never dislike it!
Let me explain!
- The hands down best Dungeon Design in the series, not even a contest. This has previously been my biggest complaint with the series, and I am SO GLAD they addressed it finally! Dungeons were always supposed to have some psychological symbolism behind them, but due to them all looking like they’d been created of a tileset of 5 individual pieces, this never really came out before. Up to Persona4, all story dungeons were bland, boring, and a slog to get through. Now, I said that back when I played Persona Q, but I also praised the dungeon in that game and said that I hoped this game has been used as a training exercise for Persona 5 and BOOOY HAVE I EVER BEEN RIGHT! Persona 5′s dungeons are beautiful, interesting, a joy to play. Every item placed is there for a reason, the dungeons are like characters in their own right, sparking with personality and truly seeming like an extension of the Shadows who rule over them. The puzzles are fitting and smart, they are paced perfectly, and story bits are handed out naturally during them, rather than just in randomly appearing textboxes. These dungeons really DO live up to the series’ psychological themes, and I ADORE IT.
- The battle system is streamlined to its logical excellence. Oh gosh, is the battle system beautiful! It’s fast paced, versatile, perfectly mapped to the controller in a way that seems natural and all its most annoying aspects have finally been dealt with; Swapping between Personas is a lot less frustrating now and the “Baton Touch” Mechanic not only fits the game’s style, but actually makes One Mores a JOY like never before. I actually went briefly back to P4 and played some of Yukiko’s dungeon during my playthrough of P5. You have NO idea how tedious P4′s battle system felt in direct comparison! The inability to baton touch over to Yosuke after downing a Hablerie made me feel awful.
- Best. Social Links. EVER. I am not kidding. This is the first time the Social Links (Confidants, whatever) did NOT make me feel bored or like I am wasting my time at ANY POINT during them! There were no characters I didn’t wanna link with after trying Rank 1, I loved all of them! Everyone was so powerful and full of personality, and I wanted to be with all of them constantly. Nothing like the Tower SL in P3, which just depressed me or the Temperance SL in P4, which made me want to smack Eri Minami in the face. I was actually looking forward to the longer stretches of nothing but Linking between story parts and I am genuinely upset for every single link I didn’t complete! Not to mention that the Confidant Abilities make it all even more worthwhile! Fusion bonuses were always a neat thing at best, but stuff like cheaper weapons and baton touch and more time to read REALLY make the whole system fit so much better into the game proper! Plus, the ability to see all your SL possibilities for the day right on the map. It is marvelous.
- The organization of the main cast. This is an advantage especially towards P4. In P4, the entire IT felt incredibly incompetent at what they were doing, to the point it was laughable. Even Naoto’s competence was questionable at best. Compare Naoto’s actions before she joins to Makoto’s actions before she joins and tell me, in all seriousness, and Makoto is not the more competent investigator. The Phantom Thieves always feel like they have at least a semblance of a plan, with the except of Ryuji, they think their actions through, they scheme, they gamble, they aim for flawless victory. Compare that to the IT, who usually seemed to be LUCKY if they ended up achieving anything. Any and all attempts to plan ahead on their part were doomed from the start, which is nowhere as evident as in— Actually, strike that, it’s evident EVERYWHERE, from how they dealt with Kanji, to randomly attacking a fanboy to “safe” Rise, to just believing the bullshit about Mitsuo being the culprit, right down to Naoto pretty much throwing herself into a TV, risking to get herself killed, just because her ego had been bruised. The PT feel a LOT more competent and it is VERY refreshing.
- The scope of the game. There’s always something to do. The game world NEVER feels “empty” or “dead”, as it often would on rainy days in P4 or on random days in P3. The possibilities for what you can do or how to raise your stats are endless, and it actually *does* feel like you have a choice in how to spend your time, rather than there being one single true “walkthrough path” that will get you everything in one go. Despite how the individual areas are cut off, it really does feel like you’re exploring Tokyo, and that’s just a great feeling, especially if you’ve been there before.
- The general aesthetic of the game. It’s breathtakingly detailed and awesome. Every inch of the scream exudes the love the designers put into it. A far cry from the dead-eyed models and lazy animations in the PS2-era games and uselessly clunky menus in the PS1-era games. This game has a personality and a flair from the moment you boot it up, and that’s definitely worth for something.
- Forshadowing. This game is GREAT at setting up all the pieces in the plot so that they’ll fall into pieces perfectly and it will make flawless sense, but without making the workings of some things too obvious. There were a couple “AHA!” moments when it really felt like I had a lightbulb lighting up in my head. In P4, it still often felt like stuff was pulled out of nowhere. That’s no longer the case and I love it.
- The overall themes of the game. Without saying anything specific and giving away spoilers, the social critique in this game is probably the strongest and most biting to come out of the series in a while, and it actually makes you feel guilty and reflect on your life as you play, which I find really powerful. By the time you’re fighting the final boss, you’re actually wondering if you, as the player (NOT the protagonist) aren’t just as bad as the NPCs in this game, which is something none of the other Persona Games ever managed to make me feel. It was pretty great.
So? What can I say? I LOVE this game. No amount of gripes I have with it is ever gonna change that!