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Persona 5 is all about facing yourself with the help of others, so you can in turn face the world

Bragr

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In Persona 5, you travel into the psyche of a vile person and kill their persona, their shadow self, the bad part of their personality that has overtaken and repressed their good side. Doing so, their ego can no longer accept the actions they have done and they fall apart, confessing it all.

The game is based in some ways on Carl Jung and the shadow self and the collective unconscious, both referenced several times. (And, as you also probably know, a lot of this is used in Control as well, even though it was a lot more abstract in that game.)

Like a hopeless addict, accepting the problem and circumstance is the path to change. Persona 5 is all about this, every time you trigger the persona in a person, the part of them that can withstand the shadow and fight back, it comes from the support or pressure of a friend or someone close. Every time one of your teammates acquires a persona of their own, he or she is forced to face their own insecurities or failures, and it brings about the persona to face down the shadow in their own psyche, addressing the problems they may have, making them capable of facing the villains.

It is all about the people around you making you see a different angle, their compassion, support, or confrontation makes the characters break out of their normal cycle. The game has a strong theme of realizing your own issues with the help of friends and then developing a strong ego to deal with your internal problems. Then, when you got a hold of your own problems and got the persona to face them, you can stand against bad people with the virtue you have attained.

There is not much of a point to this thread btw, just fascinated by this amazing game, and I am sure many of you have noticed a lot more themes and angles to Persona 5. It goes deep in a myriad of ways.







 
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MigueelDnd

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Aye, this game had such a promising start with the first chapter and palace, just to throw it all away after Yusuke gets introduced. It never really recovered after that woeful chapter, writing-wise. As someone who works in mental health and considers Persona 3 to be one of the greatest games of all time, I was very disappointed with it overall.

Be sure to check out the other Persona games if you haven't already, they're much better written and executed IMO (but you'll have to tolerate the sub-par gameplay when compared to P5).
 

Bragr

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Aye, this game had such a promising start with the first chapter and palace, just to throw it all away after Yusuke gets introduced. It never really recovered after that woeful chapter, writing-wise. As someone who works in mental health and considers Persona 3 to be one of the greatest games of all time, I was very disappointed with it overall.

Be sure to check out the other Persona games if you haven't already, they're much better written and executed IMO (but you'll have to tolerate the sub-par gameplay when compared to P5).
What do you mean, I am no big Yusuke fan, but is there any particular thing that makes you disregard the game because of that chapter.
 
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Persona 5's story was really bad. Given that Persona 3 had a better story than Persona 4 which had a better story than Persona 5 I'm beginning to worry that this is a conscious decision on Atlus's part to appeal to a broader (and stupider) audience.
 

SlimeGooGoo

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I mean yeah there's a lot of cringe, but the adults in the game ARE bad. School faculty covering up for a pedobear for starters.
The villains were the worst part honestly.
In Persona 4 at least they made you feel a little empathy for the main villain.
In Persona 5 they're basically cartoon villains.
 
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Rran

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I feel like the themes covered in the OP apply more to P4 than P5. P4 is about the cast going into their own psyches to confront and accept the hidden sides of themselves, while P5 is about the cast going into other people's psyches to attack a manifestation of their worst flaws. I feel like P4 had more nuance, personally, but P5 was still enjoyable.
 

Bragr

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I feel like the themes covered in the OP apply more to P4 than P5. P4 is about the cast going into their own psyches to confront and accept the hidden sides of themselves, while P5 is about the cast going into other people's psyches to attack a manifestation of their worst flaws. I feel like P4 had more nuance, personally, but P5 was still enjoyable.
Gonna hunt down a Vita to play it, sounds like it covers a lot of the same ideas. Know anything about the older Persona's? Is it similar themes? I almost get the sense that each iteration is a new take on the same concept.
 
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Gonna hunt down a Vita to play it, sounds like it covers a lot of the same ideas. Know anything about the older Persona's? Is it similar themes? I almost get the sense that each iteration is a new take on the same concept.
I agree with Rran Rran btw. P4 may be more focused on those themes, but I also think it feels more focused in general because I don't like the localization of P5. I feel like by around September the localization gets messy and it hurt my enjoyment of the characters/story/themes. For example characters will say things like "you've repelled an ordeal" or "for the sake of absolute victory." It sounds like a fansubbed anime done in one night in the later months of the game. I've only played P3, P4 and P5 but I would say I love 3 and 4 while I only quite like 5.
 
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Persona 5 was a letdown for me! This is coming from someone who adores Persona 3 & 4. The cast and story of 5 is the weakest of all 3 games. Nothing tops the story of 3! And Persona 4 had the best overall cast of characters, they truly felt like friends. The cast in P5 had no chemistry.
 
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Persona 5 was a letdown for me! This is coming from someone who adores Persona 3 & 4. The cast and story of 5 is the weakest of all 3 games. Nothing tops the story of 3! And Persona 4 had the best overall cast of characters, they truly felt like friends. The cast in P5 had no chemistry.
I feel quite similar, but I believe P5's shortcomings are caused by translation/writing problems
 
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laynelane

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I also enjoyed the concepts explored in Persona 5. Whether it was changing hearts/cognition, psychotic breakdowns, or mental shutdowns - it made me look at the ideas of shadows, personas, and the conscious self more closely and in a deeper way. The addition of the collective unconscious, presented in a material way, was also intriguing. I don't know if you've played the Royal version, but it adds more food for thought with with the addition of new characters and events.

As others have said, the earlier Personas are worth playing too. They also dive into these topics and are quite interesting for it. Persona 4, in particular, took a more individualized look at it which resonated with many people. As an aside, your quote from Jung is a perfect fit for this topic.
 
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MigueelDnd

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What do you mean, I am no big Yusuke fan, but is there any particular thing that makes you disregard the game because of that chapter.
Well... I'm on call with not much to do atm (thanks to the virus) and Persona 3 is ranked 9th in my favorite games of all time list, so... here I go. I'll try to be brief.

It's not really that chapter in particular, mate, I'd say the game itself is tonally all over the place after that -- as if it was written and directed by completely different groups of people (which sometimes happens and is not necessarily a bad thing, mind). First you got Kamoshida (I might not remember some names correctly, as it's been a while since I played it), who is a fucking rapist and a just a complete piece of shite. After that, what do you get? A gangster, a plagiarist, and some other irrelevant villains I don't even remember -- Futaba's palace boss being one notable exception that just popped into my mind. Ann developed as such an interesting character over the course of the first chapter and after that, all of that progress is thrown into the trash as she is reduced to the being basically an object in Yousuke's chapter and just the butt of many bad jokes over the rest of the game. This is just an example of how it seems like characters in P5 are reduced to a caricature once the spotlight leaves them and the story moves on.

P5 is narratively the opposite of P3, where every character keeps growing and facing new, different issues with each new narrative arc, rather than just saying "aight that's it for me lads, please forget 'bout me and onto the next guy/gal". I assume you haven't played P3 and P4, yeah? So I'd rather not spoil anything else, in case you find the opportunity to give them a go, but basically each character gets the spotlight multiple times over the game, you see them become friends, get truly mad at each other and grow -- sort of like the brief rumble you get between Morgana and Ryuji when the former decides to leave the team for a while, but with more substance and much, much more frequent, rather than just a one-off. The more somber tone of P3 probably helps a bit, as the game isn't afraid to get quite serious even in the optional social links (like the Sun arcana lad, oof, bless his heart).

I'd argue P4's character development is way more uniform in that regard, as everyone develops and evolves as a group rather than by facing individual issues, so even though each chapter focuses quite heavily on one person and then moves on to the next like in P5, you always feel like your actions have changed the dynamic of the Investigation Team and not only serve to keep you on your toes, but also as a reminder that the game is building up to something bigger and bigger each time. Again, I'm being intentionally vague to keep spoilers to a minimum in case you decide to play it as well. I'm no game developer, nor a writer, but what exactly prevented the Persona Team from doing the same thing in P5? Because the buildup and pacing is incredibly inconsistent in P5, while in P4 you literally wish for some chapters to never end because you feel like part of the team, in the midgame of P5 you just want to move onto the next thing in hopes that it gets more interesting. Aside from just two exceptions (Kamoshida and Futaba's mom), most of the so-called inner conflicts felt like child's play when compared to P3's villains.

Also, the whole traitor's true identity and all that was just... disappointing, IMO. I felt like a twist just for the sake of having a twist, like they wanted to replicate P4 (which was quite excellent) and failed comically in the process. P3 had a small and not-so-good twist like that, but the game itself didn't revolve around it and it just served as a narrative device to move the plot forward into the second arc, not as a building point for reaching the climax of the story like in P5's case.

I could point out so many more issues I have with P5, but honestly, when compared to most of the current JRPGs it manages to stand out, even with all of its flaws taken into account. That and nothing more manages to come to mind atm, but I'll gladly respond to any counterarguments you have if so you fancy. Criticizing this game can get quite troublesome at times in other forums because of the whole gay controversy (which I don't give two fucks about), so I'm quite happy to be able to discuss it here without being witch-hunted as if I was enabling homophobia.

That being said, I have a huge warning for you in case you decide to go try P3 and P4: the gameplay and general design blows compared to P5. If you make it through those horrid sections that have not aged well at all, however, I believe you'll be aptly rewarded for doing so. I was just fortunate enough to play P2, 3 and 4 before 5, but I don't look forward to replaying any of them unless they get very substantial remakes.
 
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Hugare

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You put more thought into it than the game deserves, OP

As someone who enjoyed Persona 4 a lot, I think that Persona 5 was trash

The hipocrisy from the main characters was just too much for me

"Ann was abused by that terrible professor during last chapter. Now, right after that, lets use her to seduce this guy for story reasons"

Those entitled little shits never questioned their own actions. Hell, this shows that even the fucking developers werent self aware.

Pandering to the weeabo power fantasy and wifu simulator came first than anything else the story was trying to convey, OP
 
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Rickyiez

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No way in hell that the story is bad , you guys just overthink too much . Joker pulling tricks on Akechi which led to his downfall was one of the coolest part in game's story , way better than a lot of Western trash that people thought are good.
 
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In Persona 5, you travel into the psyche of a vile person and kill their persona, their shadow self, the bad part of their personality that has overtaken and repressed their good side. Doing so, their ego can no longer accept the actions they have done and they fall apart, confessing it all.

The game is based in some ways on Carl Jung and the shadow self and the collective unconscious, both referenced several times. (And, as you also probably know, a lot of this is used in Control as well, even though it was a lot more abstract in that game.)

Like a hopeless addict, accepting the problem and circumstance is the path to change. Persona 5 is all about this, every time you trigger the persona in a person, the part of them that can withstand the shadow and fight back, it comes from the support or pressure of a friend or someone close. Every time one of your teammates acquires a persona of their own, he or she is forced to face their own insecurities or failures, and it brings about the persona to face down the shadow in their own psyche, addressing the problems they may have, making them capable of facing the villains.

It is all about the people around you making you see a different angle, their compassion, support, or confrontation makes the characters break out of their normal cycle. The game has a strong theme of realizing your own issues with the help of friends and then developing a strong ego to deal with your internal problems. Then, when you got a hold of your own problems and got the persona to face them, you can stand against bad people with the virtue you have attained.

There is not much of a point to this thread btw, just fascinated by this amazing game, and I am sure many of you have noticed a lot more themes and angles to Persona 5. It goes deep in a myriad of ways.







Connecting Carl Jung to... Persona 5?

Are you new to Megami Tensei series, OP? This shit has been known for decades and is not some kind of hidden or "deep" reference in the games lol
 
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Keihart

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Isn't that like the deal with every persona game? the face the shadow self and all?
 

Paltheos

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Adding to what MigueelDnd MigueelDnd said, a big problem I have with Persona 5 is that the game is directionless for much of its run. Taking down the guy connected to the first palace has a personal impact for nearly the whole cast and after that the picks are whatevs. There's no ideological procedure for selecting targets and there's no clear end goal for some time. The story has to paint the Phantom Thieves as clumsy idiots to keep the momentum going because they're blackmailed into taking action multiple times, which is a pretty poor contrast against the game's ostensible theme of rebellion.

I also much prefer P3 and P4. In those regards anyway - anything having to do with story and cast. P5's a technical achievement.
 
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P5 is a good game, but nowhere near the level of older entries for me. I really wanted to complete it, but I couldn't force myself. Needless to say the Jungian undertones are what makes the whole thing interesting. In that sense the game is much more "intellectual" than, let's say, pretentious God of War oder TLoU2 story archs.
 
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Connecting Carl Jung to... Persona 5?

Are you new to Megami Tensei series, OP? This shit has been known for decades and is not some kind of hidden or "deep" reference in the games lol
You must live in a pretty cool world where everyone's familiar with the works of Jung. In my world, hardly anybody even knows this guys name. Thanks for pointing out how obviously obsolete this thread is.
 

lachesis

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Well, this is certainly discouraging as I'm going thru 4th run on P5 right now. LOL.

I do think the story is weaker than previous ones - but as a whole package, it oozes with production values, style and great polished gameplay. As someone mentioned already - somewhat two dimensional villains are definitely a let down - but I did enjoy how Joker's careful planning overthrew Akechi's plan, and how story begins as recollection of the past. But somehow after Nijima arc, the story pretty much lost the steam for me... actually became a bit fatigued each time, all the way thru the ending. Royal's 3rd semester generally felt like more like a glorified DLC - or gaiden. I should have expected it to be so, but I have to be honest, that I wished it would be something more substantial to those issues many have mentioned in original's storytelling. In a sense, I actually felt like the original's story was preferable - leaner and more to the point - even though I am enjoying all the QOL improvements and added touches in the main game. Having a lot of content is good, but in P5 and P5R's case... it could have been streamlined a bit more.

One thing about Persona games - I enjoy how they visually represent some of the Carl Jung's of shared unconsciousness (in P5's case, mementos) and use those elements to give another undertone in its storytelling, albeit pretty upbeat/campy and sometimes overly sweet. Sort of a unique charm from having different tonality coming together - dark and light, silly and serious, etc... and the game delivers that type of stuff pretty good.
 
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Chukhopops

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The most disappointing part of P5 was the social links. In P3/P4 you have amazing storylines where the character grows and learns how to face their problems with the help of the main character. In P5 half of the social links make you instead go to Mementos and beat up the problem so it all feels pointless.
 

Khalid M.

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For every popular game there must be a wave of haters that say it's complete garbage. P3/4 may have done some things better than P5, but to call it bad? Where did the capacity for appreciation that let you enjoy P3/4 go?

Great thread OP. While I'm aware of my demons, there isn't really someone around to help me fight them. I wish I had a band of friends like Persona casts. I have friends but we don't have that kind of connection where we know each other's deep struggles. Instead I'll try to be that kind of helpful person for someone.
 

Cutty Flam

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Can't wait to play this game. Have heard a lot of people mentioning it as one of the greats but never have I read anything about the game's content until now. Great post OP
 

TonyK

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Playing Royal just now (70 hours into it), and even if for great part of the game I thought it was a masterpiece now I'm done with so many pointless dialogs. After the big (and impossible to believe) revealing I started to skip all dialogs and changed the difficulty to easy, I only want to finish this chore.

Another example of a game ruined by its excessive length.
 
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Ulysses 31

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Playing Royal just now (70 hours into it), and even if for great part of the game I thought it was a masterpiece now I'm done with so many pointless dialogs. After the big (and impossible to believe) revealing I started to skip all dialogs and changed the difficulty to easy, I only want to finish this chore.

Another example of a game ruined by its excessive length.
Hope you didn't make the right choices to get the extra Palace then. :lollipop_grinning:
 
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For every popular game there must be a wave of haters that say it's complete garbage. P3/4 may have done some things better than P5, but to call it bad? Where did the capacity for appreciation that let you enjoy P3/4 go?

Great thread OP. While I'm aware of my demons, there isn't really someone around to help me fight them. I wish I had a band of friends like Persona casts. I have friends but we don't have that kind of connection where we know each other's deep struggles. Instead I'll try to be that kind of helpful person for someone.
Persona has the same cycle as Elder Scrolls. Current one is shit, previous one is hot now despite getting shit on when it was the latest and the one prior to that one is deemed the GOAT classic. Wait until P6 comes out, everyone will say P5 was fire.
 

Ladioss

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There is not much of a point to this thread btw, just fascinated by this amazing game, and I am sure many of you have noticed a lot more themes and angles to Persona 5. It goes deep in a myriad of ways.

IMO it has been the point of the Persona series since the beginning - hence why they are targeted to a public of late teens / young adults.

Mainline SMT are about external change (throught apocalypse), Persona games are about internal change.
This is also the reason why the Devil Summoner series (which started at the same time as Persona) never really caught on : no strong theme to associate the series with.
 

llOswaldll

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I really want to get into this game, and the other Persona games, but then I go to howlongtobeat.com and it says just focusing on the main quest takes an average of 100 hours, and it's just like, ahhh, maybe not for me.
 
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Bragr

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Persona 5's story was really bad. Given that Persona 3 had a better story than Persona 4 which had a better story than Persona 5 I'm beginning to worry that this is a conscious decision on Atlus's part to appeal to a broader (and stupider) audience.
What makes Persona 3's story better than 4 or 5?
 

Bragr

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Connecting Carl Jung to... Persona 5?

Are you new to Megami Tensei series, OP? This shit has been known for decades and is not some kind of hidden or "deep" reference in the games lol
Yeah, I'm new to it. I'm not trying to make some pretentious holier-than-you thread even though it may have come off like that, I'm just fascinated by the game. I do think it goes deep though, I'm just talking about the stuff on the surface in the OP, but there is a lot of comments on socialization in the game that seem to be based on actual literature, which is rarely the case for games.
 
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