Originally released in 1996, Revelations: Persona was a game firmly rooted in two schools of JRPG game design. First, it was a RPG from Japan that was released before the huge sea change that was Final Fantasy VII. It was never a glamorous game, it wasn’t a multi-disc affair held up with overly long cut-scenes. It was poorly translated, with every Japanese element of the game being Americanized, in an effort to apparently make it palatable to Western audiences. It was also rooted in the Atlus RPG philosophy of making grind-filled, long, fairly difficult games. Atlus also likes to make games with many systems layered on top with one another. Their best known series of the time, Shin Megami Tensei was a series that was known for a layered, punishing turn-based combat system, that also involved talking to and recruiting the help of your demon enemies.
Running with many of the mechanical premises of SMT, the new spin-off series, Persona dropped the SMT prefix that was present in the Japanese edition and came to American shores, and seemingly sold kind of okay. The Persona series has since floated itself through the PS1 and PS2 eras of RPG’s, changing and reforming itself the entire way. It all came to a head with the late PS2 title, Persona 4. After riding high on the large popularity bump Persona 4 gave to Atlus, they decided to go ahead and give the people an enhanced remake of the first Persona game, this time on the PSP. This happened in 2009. I finally finished my first step down Persona memory lane the other day, on the Vita. Let’s talk about it for a bit. Continue Reading