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Kazuya

Atlus's milking of Persona shows ill signs for the future of MegaTen

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I should start out by saying this is just my opinion, if you disagree, please try to be nice about it. I should also state that I have no clue if there is another topic like this, if there is, I didn't see it when browsing earlier, my bad. 

    Persona is seemingly the life blood of the Megami Tensei franchise, or MegaTen. There is 2 spin offs for the spin off series releasing in 2 days as of writing, a leaked/rumoured Persona 4 reboot thing, Persona Q2 which is a sequel to the Mediocre at best Persona Q, and a slightly confirmed Persona 6. While this may be seen as fantastic to a lot of people, I don't agree with that. Persona has eaten Atlus's attention for MegaTen. There are no more sub series or spin offs anymore, just Persona. It's now to the point where Persona and the rest of MegaTen are considered financially different. Sure, SMT5 is on the way eventually but that is it. While DEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEP Strange Journey just released, that was a rerelease of a DS game with new additions, whether you prefer it or prefer the original isn't of importance, but DEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEP SJ is just a rerelease. The game came out many years ago, it doesn't count. The only other game is Dx2 SMT Liberation, which doesn't count either. The mobile game was developed by Sega and is managed by Sega, not Atlus. Atlus is busy rushing out Persona spin offs with what will most likely be mixed results of Mediocre to potentially great, time can only tell. But with SMT5 being the only Main Line game being made, there is an apparent lack of presence of other titles. We haven't had a fifth Demon Summoner and the last DeSu game was a rerelease of Soul Hackers which was originally on the Sega Saturn. Hell, Demi-Kids isn't a thing anymore and Atlus tried to run that like it was the second coming of Christ. We haven't had anything similar to Digital Devil Saga, Devil Survivor, Demon Summoner, really anything in years. Ever since Persona 3 and 4 became popular, especially Persona 4. Persona 4 has brought about the end of a golden era of MegaTen. Instead of a new DeSu, we get a Persona 4 spin off regularly. Instead of originality, it's Persona 3 dancing! Only time can tell what will happen but this can potentially harm Studio Zero, a new studio formed of Atlus staff who are making Project Re:Fantasy as well as the port of Catherine. Funding will stop going to Studio Zero and will go directly to another Persona game. Eventually there will be a Persona fatigue and Atlus will be screwed with its new cash cow. SMT is all but surely dead, which is sad. Main Line has been a staple of Atlus's greatness. SMT 1, 2, and If... are staples of their SNES library and the PS1 ports are even better. SMT3, while being a product of its time, showed that even after a decade, Main Line was strong and capable of a genre defining game. Without SMT3, MegaTen as a whole would be completely different as well as the beloved PS2 games like DDS, DeSu, and both Persona outings. SMT 4 and 4F are both strong contenders of why the 3ds is a great place for JRPGs, they are both great games with an aura of brilliance in their gameplay. Strange Journey was a return to the first person dungeon crawling mixed with elements from the PS2 era, blending both extremely well. SMT NINE should be forgotten to time and IMAGINE was snuffed of the Main Line status even though NINE still is and NINE is the definition of steaming garbage. 

It'd be a shame if Atlus dropped Main Line, especially since this unnecessary milking of Persona has eaten up their interest. If this continues, SMT5 will be overshadowed even worse than it already is. Atlus needs to stop focusing on Persona and just let their developers go wild, MegaTen is a wacky franchise and that shouldn't ever be lost. Persona is so popular but the costs of its popularity is harmful to the franchise and needs to be scaled down by a lot. It's great that Persona 5 sold so damn well and is loved, it truly is. That love shouldn't mean more milking though. There will be a huge fatigue for Persona eventually and that will be an issue for Atlus and then what? There will be no more parts of the Franchise to rely on since all were murdered by the wave of Persona. Hopefully SMT5 succeeds and the Switch can get a lot of great sub series with that success.

Have a nice day/afternoon/night everyone!

Side Note: Please don't beg for Persona 5 switch ports, that's nonsense. 

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I just hope SMT5 has good sales, the game is a thing... I though they would have give up with the main line after the 3DS game... But nope, there is still MegamiTensei.

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We need a Giten Megami Tensei remake this instant

I honestly don't know what else could even be done with Devil Summoner or Digital Devil Saga at this point.  

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10 minutes ago, Von Ithipathachai said:

We need a Giten Megami Tensei remake this instant

I honestly don't know what else could even be done with Devil Summoner or Digital Devil Saga at this point.  

A lot. Especially since DeSu can be set in a noir setting and DDS is a duology, so that is done.

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I like Persona but I have never finished a non persona Megaten game. Not even the apparently well liked Devil Survivor or Digital Devil Saga games. If Persona had never existed, I guarantee a SMT game that's basically Persona Q would still have been made eventually with a different cast of characters. And if any SMT game spawned a well liked enough cast of characters then boom, we would see a fighting game spinoff and Dancing All Night. 

So I guess the question to ask is, does the main series have to remain the focus when the spinoff is proving more financially viable? The Metroid Prime series took over the main Metroid games. To a point where the DS saw two Prime spinoffs rather than a sequel to Fusion. We still don't have a Metroid 5 announced at the time of this writing, though I'll admit I did like the remake of 2 on 3DS. Only a new Prime game is in the pipeline right now. World of Warcraft is probably the most fantastic example of a spinoff eclipsing the original series. They could have made a Warcraft 4, but why bother? Hell, a mod of Warcraft 3 became DOTA and spawned the MOBA genre of multiplayer games. Those draw larger crowds at tournaments than any other genre of competitive game. When you've got a hit, you need to pursue that. And don't go acting like the main SMT series is dead. 5 is still coming even if all they have to show for it is a sort of cutscene.

1 hour ago, Kazuya said:

Side Note: Please don't beg for Persona 5 switch ports, that's nonsense. 

Why not, I want my friends to play that. They haven't owned a home console since the Xbox 360 and jrpgs are kind of great on Switch.

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3 minutes ago, Glennstavos said:

I like Persona but I have never finished a non persona Megaten game. Not even the apparently well liked Devil Survivor or Digital Devil Saga games. If Persona had never existed, I guarantee a SMT game that's basically Persona Q would still have been made eventually with a different cast of characters. And if any SMT game spawned a well liked enough cast of characters then boom, we would see a fighting game spinoff and Dancing All Night. 

So I guess the question to ask is, does the main series have to remain the focus when the spinoff is proving more financially viable? The Metroid Prime series took over the main Metroid games. To a point where the DS saw two Prime spinoffs rather than a sequel to Fusion. We still don't have a Metroid 5 announced at the time of this writing, though I'll admit I did like the remake of 2 on 3DS. Only a new Prime game is in the pipeline right now. World of Warcraft is probably the most fantastic example of a spinoff eclipsing the original series. They could have made a Warcraft 4, but why bother? Hell, a mod of Warcraft 3 became DOTA and spawned the MOBA genre of multiplayer games. Those draw larger crowds at tournaments than any other genre of competitive game. When you've got a hit, you need to pursue that. And don't go acting like the main SMT series is dead. 5 is still coming even if all they have to show for it is a sort of cutscene.

Why not, I want my friends to play that. They haven't owned a home console since the Xbox 360 and jrpgs are kind of great on Switch.

Persona Q wouldn't have happened at all seeing as the franchises roots are first person dungeon crawling with demon summoning and demon conversations. It wouldn't happen because it already did, if that makes sense. I doubt it makes sense but it's true. I don't think Main Line is capable of a dancing game, it's too dark and actually serious with its tone and conflicts compared to the light hearted and weaker conflicts shown in Persona. A fighting game, sure, it would make sense if you had demons fighting or like Demi-Fiend slapping people around like the god he is. Jack Frost fighting game when? 

Main Line can't be replaced though, seeing as nothing else but Persona is going on right now. Atlus can't seem to do anything BUT Persona and Main Line right now with the focus on Persona. Main Line isn't dead, but it could be and that's an issue. I'm really excited for SMT5, especially since it's going for a Nocturne like tone if the trailer is anything to go off of. 


Persona games are Playstation exclusives normally (exception being Q but that's only because it uses the EO4 engine) and Main Line with the exception of SMT 3 have all been on Nintendo consoles in some forme. (Not counting NINE, that game is such a damn mistake, like how do you make such a bland and bad game and introduce Demon leveling in it? Either way it led to Nocturne being fantastic so no biggie, but NINE needs to be forgotten to time) 

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Persona 4 reboot? You mean the “Persona 4 is not over” line? That was actually a mistranslation. They simply meant that Persona 4’s legacy will remain. Why do people keep spreading this without actually doing research?

And about the milking of the Persona series, I don’t really see a problem with it. It’s not like Atlus didn’t try to give attention to the main series, SMTIV and Apocalypse are good examples of that, but unfortunately they didn’t become as popular as Persona. Plus, the main SMT series is not for everyone. The difficulty scares a lot of people off and the themes of the main games can a put off some people. I know a lot of people who doesn’t play the main series because the anti-religious theme of the game makes them uncomfortable. 

Is it really suprising that the more approachable Persona series is more popular?

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1 hour ago, Water Mage said:

Plus, the main SMT series is not for everyone. The difficulty scares a lot of people off and the themes of the main games can a put off some people. I know a lot of people who doesn’t play the main series because the anti-religious theme of the game makes them uncomfortable. 

Is it really suprising that the more approachable Persona series is more popular?

To be fair, the Persona series still is a little obtuse or 'difficult' compared to a standard JRPG, and those themes are still there albeit being more light-hearted.

The only one I have played through to completion is Persona 5, but it did actually make me want to try Nocturne. (which I started, but maybe when I have more time)

As for the rest, consider yourself lucky that a series you like still has the possibility of survival. Many of mine are dead and have been been for a while.

Edited by Tryhard

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I perfectly understand what you're saying, but honestly I think you should try and make it a bit more... coherent. 

Like, right now it feels less like a post with thought and effort put into it and more just fan rambling.

You seem to not know that Persona is basically as big as Final Fantasy in Japan; I don't see series fatigue ever really setting in.

Honestly, I'd reccomend going back to the drawing board; the most solid point you have (that I believe could be expanded on) is how the Persona focus for the past half-decade+ has stifled SMT spinoff games.

Edited by The DanMan

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I hate to say it, but even the mainline SMT/spinoffs that aren't Persona probably wouldn't happen as often(Or possibly even at all) without the Persona games.

Persona 3/4 came out during a time when there was a heavy JRPG drought(The late 00s/early 10s were an awful time to be a fan of the genre), and JRPGs in general were not of major interest. I don't see many of Atlus' other SMT efforts being noticed if it weren't for the newfound attention brought to them by the Persona games, which were pretty goddamn huge by JRPG standards and were *the* most noteworthy JRPGs during that era. The even larger success of Persona 5 ensures that Atlus has a pretty large cashflow to allow them to keep making smaller titles.

I don't see the Persona games as taking over Megaten. I see them as the products that ensure that we get more Megaten. So long as SMTV is like SMT, and not like Persona, I don't think there's any reason to worry about this. And considering Persona 5 itself was more SMT than Persona 3 and 4, I don't think we have to worry about Atlus neglecting the mainline franchise or anything.

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10 hours ago, Water Mage said:

Persona 4 reboot? You mean the “Persona 4 is not over” line? That was actually a mistranslation. They simply meant that Persona 4’s legacy will remain. Why do people keep spreading this without actually doing research?

And about the milking of the Persona series, I don’t really see a problem with it. It’s not like Atlus didn’t try to give attention to the main series, SMTIV and Apocalypse are good examples of that, but unfortunately they didn’t become as popular as Persona. Plus, the main SMT series is not for everyone. The difficulty scares a lot of people off and the themes of the main games can a put off some people. I know a lot of people who doesn’t play the main series because the anti-religious theme of the game makes them uncomfortable. 

Is it really suprising that the more approachable Persona series is more popular?

If I knew anything about Persona, I'd give you a better response.  I've played all of one SMT game (4, and in the middle of Apocalypse), so I'll weigh in there.

There's some seriously disturbing themes in 4.  Even if I didn't care about religion, I'd be somewhat hesitant because of

Spoiler

starving kids, lobotomies, and cannibalism (and probably some other stuff I'm forgetting)

and I think those things would make others hesitate, too.  If Persona can do some of the things SMT does, without going into nightmare territory, it wouldn't surprise me in the least if that's what Atlus goes with.  I liked the premise behind SMT 4!

Well, maybe not the super-punishing beginning, either.  But I'm a sucker for such things, so I enjoyed getting beaten up repeatedly early-on.

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2 hours ago, eclipse said:

If I knew anything about Persona, I'd give you a better response.  I've played all of one SMT game (4, and in the middle of Apocalypse), so I'll weigh in there.

There's some seriously disturbing themes in 4.  Even if I didn't care about religion, I'd be somewhat hesitant because of

  Hide contents

starving kids, lobotomies, and cannibalism (and probably some other stuff I'm forgetting)

and I think those things would make others hesitate, too.  If Persona can do some of the things SMT does, without going into nightmare territory, it wouldn't surprise me in the least if that's what Atlus goes with.  I liked the premise behind SMT 4!

Well, maybe not the super-punishing beginning, either.  But I'm a sucker for such things, so I enjoyed getting beaten up repeatedly early-on.

I think it has to do with tone. 

Honestly(Depending on the game) the mainline SMT games don't tackle much heavier human themes than Persona games do. 

But the mainline games have a weight to the presentation. The Persona games are a lot lighter and more bubbly, but they still deal with some heavy themes. 

People love Persona 5 despite

Spoiler

a high school rape and abuse victim trying to kill herself and spending the whole game in a coma, depending or not you do a specific Confidant chain. Before you finish the first heist. 

 

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4 minutes ago, Slumber said:

I think it has to do with tone. 

Honestly(Depending on the game) the mainline SMT games don't tackle much heavier human themes than Persona games do. 

But the mainline games have a weight to the presentation. The Persona games are a lot lighter and more bubbly, but they still deal with some heavy themes. 

People love Persona 5 despite

  Reveal hidden contents

 

Hmmm.  What you described affects one person.  What I described affects in-game society.

Maybe that's why the SMT version bothered me more than your example.  One person is a tragedy, while a million is a statistic and all.

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1 hour ago, eclipse said:

Well, maybe not the super-punishing beginning, either.  But I'm a sucker for such things, so I enjoyed getting beaten up repeatedly early-on.

EO in a nutshell, no? 

 

9 hours ago, The DanMan said:

Honestly, I'd reccomend going back to the drawing board; the most solid point you have (that I believe could be expanded on) is how the Persona focus for the past half-decade+ has stifled SMT spinoff games.

True, the last spinoff series was Devil Survivor. Although to be fair, would it be far to say the rise in development costs has also been to blame for stifling SMT spinoffs? Can't afford to make super obscure games anymore. I don't think Devil Children/Demikids would see the light.

 

19 hours ago, Kazuya said:

Side Note: Please don't beg for Persona 5 switch ports, that's nonsense. 

Well Persona has been generally Sony exclusive, but if the PS3 can handle P5, and was originally made for it, the Switch could handle it too. All depends on how strong Sony's chains to Persona are. And if Persona is a cash cow, well why shouldn't Atlus consider porting to Switch, and PC? If there are significantly enough expected buyers to exceed port costs, they as a company should.

 

16 hours ago, Kazuya said:

I don't think Main Line is capable of a dancing game, it's too dark and actually serious with its tone and conflicts compared to the light hearted and weaker conflicts shown in Persona.

Now you're insulting Persona! Well somewhat.

P5 has the MC lose their reputation over trying to defend a woman from sexual assault and then features as the first boss and villain the classic school gym coach rapist whose psychological dungeon is filled with their nasty thoughts in physical form. That is pretty disgusting, and partly why I have no interest in P5. I bear with SMT darkness, sometimes with it draining me, but sexual crimes I simply do want to have to witness even in fictional form. 

There is also the case of the one character with a kinda serious past which is a serious issue in Japan, if not so much over here, which is why Japan gobbles them up and the West/rest doesn't.

And insofar as I'm aware, there is... Kenji I think his name was in P4?

Spoiler

PC with a public bath dungeon inside his psyche with a nude flamboyant version of himself lurking inside? Something to do with liking traditionally feminine things, maybe wanting public attention. Perhaps even gayness, and if not, he is still sensitive to anything others say/suggest that would imply he is gay?

Yeah... I don't want to touch that. But at the same time it for some reason it also would make me want to use them PQ, if I bought that game.

I am aware Persona has plenty o' lighthearted stuff in it, like visits to the beach, spying on girls bathing, and slice of life anime goodness galore, none of which would end up in a mainline SMT. Although Devil Survivor 2 was also pretty darn comical at times, not exactly a dating sim because 8 ingame days isn't enough for one, but lightness and coolness overrides darkness, if not seriousness in that game for sure.

Mind you I've never played a Persona, nor ever intend to. But GFAQs puts out enough talk on the games for me to get an idea of them. And if PQ2 is significantly better than PQ1 in gameplay and still EO-like to the core, I might nab it. Assuming all 3 Persona casts were in it, MC, MC, MC, OC, + Dog I'd consider for my team.

 

13 hours ago, Water Mage said:

I know a lot of people who doesn’t play the main series because the anti-religious theme of the game makes them uncomfortable.

I wouldn't quite call the series anti-religion. It does lack Jesus love and other niceties on the Law side, but to be fair Chaos is no bucket of puppies either. You're never forced to be Chaos, and Lucifer, although perhaps not so rubbing the wrong way as the Law reps tend to be (they are "holier than thou"), is at his core just the same. He doesn't really care about humanity, he thinks Law is stupid the same way Law thinks Chaos is barbaric, and he has no issue with his nominal goons running around eating and terrorizing humanity. 

And sometimes, religious references are just for coolness. I did the fourth and final Archangel battle in DDS2 today, mind you it's just side content here, nothing story-related. I liked fighting Michael and friends, since the idea of fighting the Archangels is fun, even if I'm not a immoral satanist, which I am not (and Satan is Law-aligned in SMT anyhow:P:). They're big and strong and put up a good fight (well on the blind round, grinded for three -dynes and used the -kajas for change and things were much easier). When you factor in the bits of what they say, it's even an act of mercy when you defeat them.

 

22 minutes ago, eclipse said:

Maybe that's why the SMT version bothered me more than your example.  One person is a tragedy, while a million is a statistic and all.

Doesn't that saying work against what you say right beforehand? A statistic is cold, nothing to get attached to, that you do (and I do as well), is unusual according to the saying.

 

19 hours ago, Kazuya said:

We haven't had a fifth Demon Summoner and the last DeSu game was a rerelease of Soul Hackers which was originally on the Sega Saturn. Hell, Demi-Kids isn't a thing anymore and Atlus tried to run that like it was the second coming of Christ

Maybe they realized trying to compete with Pokemon for the kids market wasn't the best of ideas? Outside of what, Digimon, all Pokemon competitors died off, although that Yokai Watch rival was relatively recently born and has at least been having a good show from what I hear. Don't know about the current status of the show.

As for Devil Summoner, the last new one was on the PS2, so you shouldn't be surprised. I've played Soul Hackers, it's nothing special really. And while I hear Raidou Kuzunoha vs. King Abaddon does improve on the gameplay of vs. The Soulless Army, unless it is massively better, and unless the plot is as well, it was a milking of SMT side project that wasn't actually up the series's usual par. Not saying Devil Summoner can't have a new good title, but what was the exact point to the subseries? It needs a Reason, but feels to me like a Vortex World.

 

19 hours ago, Kazuya said:

SMT is all but surely dead, which is sad.

Then utter a Silent Prayer. I'm not sure this was the best way to go about things.

And SMT isn't dead until we stop getting actual games. And right now, we can't say that. V is on the way and looking like its taking inspiration from good old Nocturne, hopefully this includes dungeon design. Can they just make the characters thicker than tissue paper and more risen than a pancake this time? 

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9 minutes ago, Interdimensional Observer said:

Doesn't that saying work against what you say right beforehand? A statistic is cold, nothing to get attached to, that you do (and I do as well), is unusual according to the saying.

Yes and no.  It's a comparison to how an individual event is perceived versus a systemic one.

In Persona's case, if the rest of society is more-or-less not-fucked, then that one instance is just a tragic outlier.  Some people were assholes, while the rest of the world isn't.  In SMT's case, social issues crop up again and again.  It shows that the world is screwed from the top-down.  IMO, it's a lot more horrifying when there's something wrong, and society just. . .goes with it, because it's their best option.  It speaks far more to the hopelessness of the situation than one person being dealt an awful hand of cards in life.

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1 hour ago, Interdimensional Observer said:

Not saying Devil Summoner can't have a new good title, but what was the exact point to the subseries? It needs a Reason, but feels to me like a Vortex World.

If I remember correctly, Atlus initially did not plan to make any more mainline games past if...; Devil Summoner was to take up the torch, so to speak.  

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2 hours ago, eclipse said:

Hmmm.  What you described affects one person.  What I described affects in-game society.

Maybe that's why the SMT version bothered me more than your example.  One person is a tragedy, while a million is a statistic and all.

Persona 5 is very much a society-focused game. Though it's more poking critiques at modern society(The game boils down to the idea that just following the hivemind of society and harmful traditional values is ultimately bad, and that change is better for society) than SMT, which in general is more about looking at the worst humanity as a whole has to offer. 

I guess you're right though, since Persona often tackles themes and how they impact the individual(Persona 4 was about the media and how it affected people). 

Edited by Slumber

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15 hours ago, eclipse said:

If I knew anything about Persona, I'd give you a better response.  I've played all of one SMT game (4, and in the middle of Apocalypse), so I'll weigh in there.

There's some seriously disturbing themes in 4.  Even if I didn't care about religion, I'd be somewhat hesitant because of

  Reveal hidden contents

starving kids, lobotomies, and cannibalism (and probably some other stuff I'm forgetting)

and I think those things would make others hesitate, too.  If Persona can do some of the things SMT does, without going into nightmare territory, it wouldn't surprise me in the least if that's what Atlus goes with.  I liked the premise behind SMT 4!

Well, maybe not the super-punishing beginning, either.  But I'm a sucker for such things, so I enjoyed getting beaten up repeatedly early-on.

Yeah, so things can get really disturbing, even the monster designs. I imagine you saw Mara? And there’s Alice’s backstory...and her sidequests in many games.

And funny you mention cannibalism because it’s the main gameplay mechanics if a spinoff off series, no joke. The game gives you the option to eat monsters(somw which are transformed people), and eating them is the only way to learn new skills and level up if I’m not mistaken.

@Interdimensional ObserverPerhaps I’ve exaggerated when I called SMT anti-religious, but Law is seen in a much more negative light than Chaos, plus the Christian God is the main villain. Besides, while Lucifer is not gentle soul, he at least gives you humanity a chance. He even says that while he really doesn’t love humanity, he won’t abandon them either. 

Edited by Water Mage

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2 minutes ago, Water Mage said:

Perhaps I’ve exaggerated when I called SMT anti-religious, but Law is seen in a much more negative side than Chaos, plus the Christian God is the main villains. Besides, while Lucifer is not gentle soul, he at least gives you humanity a chance. He even says that while he really doesn’t love humanity, he won’t abandon them either. 

Yeah.  One of the things that's always bugged me about the series is that Law is usually portrayed as the general worst of the three Alignments.  Shin Megami Tensei II in particular suffers quite profoundly from this and it's one of the reasons (among others) I dislike it so much relative to other mainline games.

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6 hours ago, Water Mage said:

And there’s Alice’s backstory

Reminds me that when I played SMTI iOS, the only official English version, the Visionary items related to Alice in a way undercut her, although they did in a different way makes things even more creepy. I did like the Visionary items as whole though, and I'm aware SMTII also got them in later versions.

 

18 hours ago, Von Ithipathachai said:

If I remember correctly, Atlus initially did not plan to make any more mainline games past if...; Devil Summoner was to take up the torch, so to speak.  

*Checks the release dates*

Shin Megami Tensei II: March 18th, 1994

If...: October 28th, 1994

Devil Summoner: December 25th, 1995

Devil Summoner: Soul Hackers: November 13th, 1997

NINE: December 5th, 2002

Nocturne: February 20th, 2003

Seems like you're right. That gaping gulf between mainline titles is pretty big, almost ten years. Wonder why they chose to abandon Devil Summoner as the replacement for the mainline and just go back to plain old SMT? It's worth noting that 1996 was the year of Persona 1, and Persona 2 filled in 1999 and 2000 with Innocent Sin and Eternal Punishment, so those years weren't exactly empty. Plus whatever other minor spin offs.

6 hours ago, Von Ithipathachai said:

Yeah.  One of the things that's always bugged me about the series is that Law is usually portrayed as the general worst of the three Alignments.  Shin Megami Tensei II in particular suffers quite profoundly from this and it's one of the reasons (among others) I dislike it so much relative to other mainline games.

Why oh why haven't they given an official English version of this one yet? I'd still play it, as old school as it is.

I also think that when it came to Devil Survivor, Law pre-8th Day was done well, YHVH gave humanity a week to fix its problems, rather than just send in the nukes first thing, and Remiel was fairly reasonable, as was Amane as the human rep. But the Overclocked 8th Days, besides being poor writing as a whole, just excreted all over Law. Yuzu 8th does YHVH no favors at all, and if you choose the heroic version of Naoya & Kaido 8th, it is even worse. The evil version of that 8th doesn't make Law good, just makes you worse than Law. It isn't like the Amane 8th does Law that many favors either, it doesn't really hurt, but it could have been better.

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19 hours ago, Slumber said:

Persona 5 is very much a society-focused game. Though it's more poking critiques at modern society(The game boils down to the idea that just following the hivemind of society and harmful traditional values is ultimately bad, and that change is better for society) than SMT, which in general is more about looking at the worst humanity as a whole has to offer. 

I guess you're right though, since Persona often tackles themes and how they impact the individual(Persona 4 was about the media and how it affected people). 

I'm not overly familar with the SMT games but from my basic understanding, the whole Law and Chaos paths don't do anything to dissuade that the world is essentially portrayed as bleak and unforgiving, and neither can be considered "Good" in which the best you can hope for is to break even.

I think that's a big part of why SMT can be considered a bit more Lovecraftian.

Edited by Tryhard

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2 hours ago, Tryhard said:

I'm not overly familar with the SMT games but from my basic understanding, the whole Law and Chaos paths don't do anything to dissuade that the world is essentially portrayed as bleak and unforgiving, and neither can be considered "Good" in which the best you can hope for is to break even.

I think that's a big part of why SMT can be considered a bit more Lovecraftian.

That's another part where SMT is different than Persona narratively, where you're definitively the good guys, and while there are grays leading up to the climax, it almost always boils down to black and white in the end. 

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At least Atlus does not seem to be afraid in try out new IPs, or even new narrative takes on existing genres when they get the chance. Granted, I only started playing the Persona series, and I probably won't play any of the mainline SMT series, but deconstructing a fighting genre sounds like an interesting narrative. Deconstructing the idol/dancing industry in P4D sounds like a good reminder that we (as audiences and consumers) should be vigilant of the abuses and other darks parts of the industry that can (and - I'm sure - do) happen. Even TMSFE sound like a fascinating new take on the characters' personas/performas/mascots and the FE lore. Devil Survivor sounds like a commentary on a possible panic scenario when a hypothetical large-scale terrorist attack hits Tokyo, or other big cities. (And considering the politeness, calmness, and restraint of the Japanese shown in the Tohoku Earthquake of 2011, it's also scary to think that the DS panic in Tokyo (or any Japanese city, really) might be considered as one of the less-bad-case scenarios, compared to if the same thing happened in a city outside of Japan.)

Edited by henrymidfields

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Most of the spinoffs in the EXTREMELY long gap between Persona 4 and 5 were not handled by the main team. Arena and Dancing All Night are not even in house with Atlus. It's mostly Sega promoting their best selling series, as a large company would want to do, but Persona is keeping Atlus and SMT alive.

Atlus is frankly not good at HD development, which has led to extreme delays of any console release from them. Before Persona 5, the only game their main team managed to release was Catherine. A sub team managed to push out TMS with assistance from IntSys. While Persona certainly feels overexposed, it's mostly because of the construction of ports for the PSP and Vita. Enhanced ports have always been Atlus's way to stretch the life of their games across generations because they just don't make many games, especially after the phase out of the PS2. The gap between SMT4A and 5 is likely going to be a lot shorter than the gap between 3 and 4 now that Atlus finally has more teams and more of an HD asset library built up from Persona 5.

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On 5/24/2018 at 9:01 PM, Von Ithipathachai said:

Yeah.  One of the things that's always bugged me about the series is that Law is usually portrayed as the general worst of the three Alignments.  Shin Megami Tensei II in particular suffers quite profoundly from this and it's one of the reasons (among others) I dislike it so much relative to other mainline games.

To be fair, it's not like they were any better in real life. 

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