Traveling with Persona 4 Golden

I recently took a trip to Seattle, which required a long flight. Fortunately, I brought both my Nintendo 2DS and PS Vita. One game I had started awhile ago but never got into was Persona 4 Golden. I made it a point to try and get through the beginning of the game and get hooked onto what many have called the best game on Vita. After putting in some time with the game, I have to agree.

P4G Cast

When I first heard about Persona 4 (and having no previous exposure to the Persona series), I checked out some YouTube clips of the gameplay. I was skeptical that I could get into a game that involved a social simulator by day, and a dungeon crawler by night. Despite the peculiarity of the mash-up, the formula works addictingly well.

The premise of the game involves the player as a nephew leaving his home in the city to live with his uncle and cousin in a rural small town. Uncle Dojima is a detective that is devoted to the slavish hours of his job, which has been made even more difficult by the mysterious and gruesome murders of two Inaba citizens. Naturally, the player also attempts to solve the murders when his new-found friends become involved in the intrigue.

Dojima Train Station

Thus, during each day (keeping track of days/weeks being an important mechanic) the player must build social links with other students and citizens of Inaba, all while trying to balance the rigors of school, clubs, and sports. Building these social links increases the power of Personas, which have a Pokemon feel via leveling for new abilities along with fusing Personas together to create new, more powerful Personas. The Personas are then used in the dungeons to battle, thereby linking the social aspect to the dungeon crawling combat portions.

delibearating_teddie

Teddie will provide the glasses you need to fight

The colorful and snappy presentation of the dialogue and menus really helps to keep the pace. There is no slow scrolling of text or long loading times between areas or events. The enemies, characters, and Personas each have a creative uniqueness that makes the combat more engaging.

The real pull is the story.  By giving the player the choice of when and how to spend their time, and with whom to do so, the game feels like a unique playthrough (not to mention it has a New Game+ mode).  Without spoiling further, the story is also paced to get you saying “just one more day.”

I don’t want to add too much more until I get further into the game.  What are your thoughts on Persona 4? Any tips I should I know going into the middle/end game? What is Teddie? Please comment below!

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5 thoughts on “Traveling with Persona 4 Golden

  1. Pingback: A Bit of Reflection: “What Have You Learned Since You Started Blogging?” | Particlebit

  2. I’m still just at the early days but I’m really liking P4G. I’ve played Persona 1,2,3 but only finished P3. I really like how they focused on what worked on the earlier games then added new things that worked well with the game. This whole social thing started with P3 and that’s a feature that I really liked, I used to play P3 with my mind set to get close and build social links to certain cute characters in the school. In P4G I’m looking forward to who I could form social links with and building my personas.

    I prefer the japanese Kuma than that english Teddie though I’m not really sure if the jap version used Kuma (I only saw the animation, I don’t play jap version of games).

    And well yeah, “just one more day”. That statement sums it up.

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    • Having not played the prior entries, do the stories from 1, 2, or 3 connect to 4 at all? I really enjoy the characters and so far prefer the social links and daily activities compared to the actual combat (although I do like fusing new Personas too).

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      • not really, though they all involved schools and it’s surrounding community… Also, P1 and P2 have darker stories IMHO. Gameplay-wise, P4 is close to P3. P1 and P2 have a different style, closer to other Shin Megami Tensei games I think.

        Back on P3, I spent most of my time to max out social links. Balance is the key though, too much of one thing makes it harder.

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