The Phantom Thieves of Hearts’ calling card has been sent, and the long-anticipated Treasure finally materializes! Within a day’s time, Joker from Persona 5 will touch down in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate as Challenger #1 from the Fighters’ Pass DLC, four months after his show-stopping reveal at The Game Awards 2018. Joker won’t be coming alone, bringing the whole crew of Phantom Thieves along for the ride and a stage based on the Palace born from everyone’s hearts — Mementos!
From the above manifesto, Joker makes full use of his handgun, dagger, and tripwire with the expected panache of a phantom thief. He can summon his main Persona Arsene to amplify his attacks and grant himself counters, as well as a better recovery. His Final Smash calls on his cohorts to assist him in unleashing their trademark All Out Attack, complete with the familiar black and red end card!
Within Mementos, you’ll need to keep an eye on the subway trains as well as intruding borders in order to survive. That said, while this iteration of the collective conscience is pulled right from Persona 5, its appearance can change based on the music being played! That’s right, even Persona 3 and Persona 4 are getting some love with the new stage, with new music and new Mii Fighter Costumes based on their protagonists, Morgana, as well as the returning Tails and Knuckles costumes from Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U (new costumes sold separately).
Not only that, Ultimate is also getting the hefty Version 3.0 update that brings with it a few surprises, in the forms of Stage Builder, video editing, and the long-awaited Smash World feature that takes full advantage of the Nintendo Switch Online mobile app. Ready yourselves for April 17 — tomorrow — as we have never seen all of this coming!
Sadly, the reveal video didn’t provide any insight on who Challenger #2 might be, but E3 is right around the corner…
Though the game hasn’t been out long in Japan, Persona 4: Dancing All Night is getting a new piece of DLC this August. What’s unique about this piece of DLC is that it adds a non-Persona character to the lineup! That’s right! Everybody’s favorite Vocaloid, Hatsune Miku, is making a guest appearance in the rhythm game. Hatsune Miku will be performing “Heaven”, a remix of the theme from the Heaven dungeon in Persona 4.
Check out some screenshots of Miku in action in the gallery below!
It may not be the release date that most Persona fans want, but earlier today, Atlus USA revealed that Persona 4: Dancing All Night will be hitting North America on September 29 for the PlayStation Vita. In addition to the standard edition of the game, Atlus is launching a special Disco Fever edition for $80, which includes a two-disc soundtrack, DLC costumes, a downloadable song, a Teddie keychain, and a Vita skin and pouch. Persona 4: Dancing All Night focuses on the Investigation Team as they search for the missing members of Kanamin Kitchen.
You can check out some new trailers above. Will you be picking this up?
Atlus is spinning off the characters of Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4 into a new rhythm game for the PlayStation Vita, titled Persona 4: Dancing All Night. The game will feature music from the Persona sub-series and a plot that takes place half a year from when Persona 4 left off. Above, you can watch the latest trailer, featuring the young, Junes Department Store-obsessed Nanako Dojima. Persona 4: Dancing All Night releases on June 25 in Japan and elsewhere later this year.
Atlus recently confirmed the Japanese release date for Persona 4: Dancing All Night. The PlayStation Vita exclusive rhythm game will release in Japan on June 25th, alongside a special edition console painted in the franchise’s bright colors. The system will cost around ¥30,000 (approximately $250), compared to a regular Vita which only costs around ¥20,000 (approximately $170). The bundle also comes with an original Persona 4: Dancing All Night background theme and the game pre-installed. The game’s release date for North America has not been announced, other than a vague “2015.”
As a medium, video games offer a unique experience from other forms of media, such as television, movies, and books, because video games are inherently interactive. One could argue that this is the only thing separating video games and movies. Despite this similarity, many movies that are based on video games often come up short and vice versa. With these shortcomings, the question rises whether or not video game franchises should expand into other media. I believe they can and should, as evidenced by Persona 4, as well as the Mass Effect, BioShock, and Pokémon franchises.
Sometimes the purpose of a multimedia venture is to bring a franchise to a new audience, as with Persona 4. Persona 4, which first existed as a PlayStation 2 title in 2008, then later became an anime in 2011, and focuses on a group of high school students who investigate some mysterious deaths in the small, rural town of Inaba.
The entire purpose of the animation is to allow people who don’t have the time or means to play the game to experience it, just as if they were playing it. It was a smart move to simply retell the story of the game in the anime adaptation, since there’s no background knowledge needed in order to enjoy it. Persona 4: The Animation is also much shorter than the game, reducing the time to completion by at least 60 hours, based off of my game clear time. The show is much more concise than the game, as the extraneous combat is removed and only the major events for the social interactions are shown. If you had to pick between a thirteen hour show or a 50+ hour game, which would you rather choose?
Multimedia franchises are also great for expanding a universe, as shown by the Mass Effect novels. There have been a total of four novels so far, but instead of telling the games’ stories, they focus on the events between games. I was astounded by the depth at which they added onto the lore as they added new characters and locations, some of which have made their way into the games. In Mass Effect 3, for example, a mission takes you to Grissom Academy and has you fight Kai Leng, both of which were introduced within the novels! While the books aren’t necessary to understand these moments, they are more memorable if you have read them.
Another example of an expanded universe lies deep under the ocean in the city of Rapture. I recently finished BioShock: Rapture, a novelization of the backstory of BioShock and BioShock 2, penned by John Shirley. Starting with the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, BioShock: Rapture tells the story of Rapture’s rise, subsequent decay, and all the events in between, ending shortly before the beginning of the game.
For those familiar with BioShock, you’ll recognize many of the locations and characters involved with the story. All the major players are there, including, but not limited to, Sofia Lamb, Brigid Tenenbaum, and of course, Andrew Ryan. If you have played BioShock, the novel completes one of its two purposes well, serving as a supplement to learn more about Rapture’s demise. Otherwise, the story takes on the alternate purpose, introducing newcomers to the premise of the games.
Quite possibly the best example of a multimedia franchise, however, is Pokémon. It launched in 1996, but did not become a worldwide phenomenon until 1998. Pokémon has spawned a whole wave of different types of media, from anime and manga to trading cards to books. This is in part thanks to a single character who has become to Pokémon what Mario is to Nintendo and Sonic to SEGA—a little yellow mouse named Pikachu.
Among people who don’t know much about Pokémon, chances are that they have some semblance of who Pikachu is. The adorable creature is one of the few aspects of Pokémon that remains constant across the show’s many seasons. As a result, Pikachu reigns as one of the most recognizable symbols from the franchise. There are Pokémon-themed airplanes, and Pikachu was even the official mascot for the 2014 World Cup Japanese team!
All of these appearances bank off of Pokémon‘s popularity, but it’s a two-way street. These companies and products benefit from the use of Pikachu and other characters, but at the same time, Pokémon becomes an even greater force because of the public’s increased exposure to it. Pikachu has become a universal icon of Pokémon, so it’s no wonder then why the franchise is extremely successful.
Some expansions are failures, however. In 1993, Super Mario Bros. released in movie theaters, but it proved to be a massive failure. Even among the Mass Effect novels, one of the four stories was found to contain a number of inconsistencies with the established lore. This story in particular was the only one not written by Drew Karpyshyn, who served as the lead writer on Mass Effect and Mass Effect 2. BioWare has promised revisions in future editions of the book, though this still proves that even the biggest franchises can lead to errors when turning to new media. As such, all companies should take precautions as more productions are developed to assure consumers the quality which we desire.
There are a number of ways video games can be successful outside of the gaming medium. Companies can use other forms of media to give the audience the background knowledge necessary to fully comprehend the plot. Other times, they expand on a particular character, or even hint at things to come in future installments.
Multimedia ventures also allow a new experience to come to those who haven’t played a game before. While this is a fairly uncommon tactic, some well known games have pulled it off successfully. These ventures allow titles to be exposed to a wider audience and, in specialized cases, can even be used as a way to market the brand.
While there have been and always will be flops in creating multimedia franchises, I believe that more good than bad will come from doing so. Companies shouldn’t be afraid to take risks with their IP. Regardless of how these projects turn out, the companies’ past works will be unaffected. A bad venture will certainly hurt, but it’s rarely life threatening. If that venture turns out to be a hit, however, the rewards could be tremendous, possibly opening the door for even more opportunities down the road.
Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4 is one of the most popular JRPGs of our generation, and with good reason. Even with the incredible Vita exclusive HD enhancement, Persona 4: Golden, Atlus confirmed that the original PlayStation 2 version of the game will be coming to the PlayStation Store on April 8th for only a mere $10! This could possibly be an attempt to hype up gamers for Persona 5, which is set to release in 2015. Either way, this gives me the perfect excuse to play the game again.
If you’re unfamiliar with the game, Persona 4 is an excellent hybrid of turn-based dungeon crawling mixed with
dating-sim elements. You play as a character that moved from the big city to
the countryside to live with your uncle and cousin while your parents work overseas.
Not even living in this seemingly peaceful town for a week, a string of murders
starts taking place during foggy nights. After accidently somehow obtaining the
ability to enter inside any TV leading to a world shrouded in thick fog, you,
your friends, and a bear discover that the TV world may be linked to the series
of murders happening in your town. Using the power of their Personas (which can
only be attained after accepting the evils within themselves), your team
prevents more murders from happening, whilst searching for the truth behind the
The bulk of the gameplay revolves around the main
character living day-to-day life in his new town. You can partake in a wide
variety of Social Links, which as you learn and help someone through their
problems, their bonds will help level up your choice of hundreds of Personas,
depending on their corresponding arcana. Some social links will require the
player to be at a certain stat level in one of five social stats: knowledge,
courage, expression, diligence, and understanding. These social stats raise through various activities such as studying, taking part time jobs, or making the right decisions in dire situations. When you aren’t eating ramen
with your friends, keeping a day job, or studying at the library, you’re in the
TV world fighting creatures called shadows. Unlike his teammates, the main
character can hold more than one persona and is able to switch between them on
the fly. This makes combat very customizable to tailor the needs of the player.
If my explanation wasn’t enough to sway your
purchase, I’d still implore you to try this game. I can promise you won’t be
wasting your $10. There’s also a version of the game on the Vita that’s a
bit more expensive, but boasts general menu improvements, an extra dungeon, and
dozens of hours of extra content. No matter which one you decide to go
with, this game is absolute must play.
The latest entry in the Persona 4 Arena arcade fighters, Persona 4: The Ultimax Ultra Suplex Hold, was given
a spot in the Persona Channel’s big announcement this morning. The
long-titled arcade brawler hits Japanese arcades on the 28th of this
month and will be getting a PlayStation 4 release next summer, though
there’s no word on a western release as of yet. Unsurprising,
considering the website is Japanese. From the trailer, it appears all
the characters will have their shadow versions appear as combatants, and
a new character is being introduced, as was the case with the original Persona 4 Arena.
Persona 4 has been an enormously popular title since its release—enough to warrant its own anime adaptation, arcade fighter, and handheld remake not long after its initial release. Now it is getting a rhythm game, because Japan, I suppose. Persona 4: Dancing All Night is a “sound action” game being produced by developer Dingo, who is behind a few other of these rhythm games, including Hatsune Miku: Project Diva Extend. They must be a pretty popular genre to warrant a Persona 4 spin-off reaching out to them, though it is hard to argue with the quality of the Persona series’ soundtracks. It will release in Japan fall 2014.
Be warned, the trailer sounds like an idol announcement and features shrill Teddie voice and extended voice-over.