Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4 Reviews (PlayStation 2)
|Pursuing my true self||Donatello (463)|
|Great for fans of the genre, but too tedious and difficult for others.||Pixelspeech (1006)|
Our Users Say
|Acting||The quality of the actors' performances in the game (including voice acting).||3.9|
|Gameplay||How well the game mechanics work (player controls, game action, interface, etc.)||4.0|
|Graphics||The quality of the art, or the quality/speed of the drawing routines||3.8|
|Personal Slant||How much you personally like the game, regardless of other attributes||4.1|
|Sound / Music||The quality of the sound effects and/or music composition||4.0|
|Story / Presentation||The main creative ideas in the game and how well they're executed
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|Overall User Score (31 votes)||4.0|
Critic ReviewsMobyRanks are listed below. You can read here for more information about MobyRank.
Gaming Nexus (Feb 05, 2009)
Persona 4 is the pinnacle of PS2 RPGs. No title is going to be able to touch it. No Final Fantasy, no Tales of whatever, not even the much vaunted Shadow Hearts series. If you enjoy RPGs even in the slightest, you must own Persona 4. It is quite possibly, the greatest PS2 title ever made.
HonestGamers (Dec 06, 2008)
The very term “Japanese RPG” has become a by-word for a certain lack of quality, hinting at insipid storytelling and trite game design. This is based on a very lopsided view of the genre that only considers the output of certain major, conservative publishers. Atlus has always sat on the bleeding edge of Japanese RPG design, and has remarkably managed to stay in that position throughout the company's entire existence. Persona 4 is everything good and right with the Japanese RPG, and hopefully is going to pave the way for many more great, innovative titles in the future of the Shin Megami Tensei series. This is a game that everyone with a PS2 should try, if only to marvel at what is possible when an independent developer applies wild creativity to limited resources. It puts many of the more big-budget efforts of much larger companies, on much larger consoles, absolutely to shame.
GamePro (US) (Dec 09, 2008)
I'll admit: I went in to Persona 4 with some strong reservations, and I came out of it ready to boot up my save file and start the entire adventure over again from step one. While Persona 4 isn't revolutionary or utterly groundbreaking, it does so many things right on such a small scale - not to mention so many things that have never been seen before in the role-playing genre - it'd just be a shame to pass on this gem. I can't recommend this innovative experience highly enough, and from first time visitors to the Velvet Room to jaded MegaTen fanatics, Persona 4 is an absolute must buy.
GameSpy (Dec 18, 2008)
Persona 4 pleasantly surprised us, coming from out of nowhere and showing us that the PlayStation 2 still has what it takes to power a gaming experience that is on par with the best offered on next-generation platforms. If you only buy one more PlayStation 2 game before retiring the trusty system to that dusty closet, make sure this is it.
Game Shark (Dec 15, 2008)
The game is confined to a relatively small area, and yet it’s so massive in scope that this review hardly qualifies as a suitable summary of everything you can do. Choices are only as important as the ramifications though, and that’s why Persona 4 is such a beautiful experience. You get involved with the characters and the town on such a personal level that statistics melt into the background. On more than one occasion, I ditched beneficial Social Links because I preferred the company of my other friends, and it’s an incredibly rare and surrealistic moment when you realize that you think of a 3D model as a friend.
Thunderbolt Games (Dec 04, 2008)
Look, folks. If you have any interest in RPGs, you need to play Persona 4. Period. It’s one of the best titles available on the PS2. In fact, it just might be the console's swan song. It’s a worthy sequel to Persona 3; it takes all of the things that made that game kick ass, and improves upon it.
Destructoid (Dec 05, 2008)
Atlus managed to combine the best of what already worked well with fresh new ideas and tweaks, and the end result is a fantastic role-playing game -- definitely a shoo-in for RPG of the year. Unless you dislike the genre, do not, under any circumstances, miss Persona 4.
1UP (Dec 01, 2008)
But before that gaming holy war breaks out in earnest, here's something everyone can agree on: Persona offers some of this decade's finest RPG epics. If you're a role-playing freak who somehow still hasn't given this series a shot, I got news for ya, buddy: I'm comin' to take your nerd card.
Gamervision (Dec 02, 2008)
It’s a shame that this game will probably not get the recognition it deserves, because Persona 4 is really an outstanding achievement in gaming. There’s no question that this is going to be one of my top games of the year, and any fan of JRPGs should be playing it when it’s released next week. I don’t know why Atlus decided to stick with the PS2, but honestly, I really don’t care. Despite not having the graphics of a current-generation title, Persona 4 is easily better than many games released on the 360 or PS3 this year. It’s also incredibly lengthy and replayable, and at $40, there’s hardly a reason not to buy it. It’s not for everyone, but those who have enjoyed MegTen games in the past are in for a real treat, yet again. I never expected this game to become as much of an obsession as the previous Persona did, but it’s hard not to get sucked in to Persona 4.
Playstation Illustrated (Dec, 2008)
Persona 4 is an all-around great game and a must buy for any RPG fan - or really anyone in the market for a good game. There are numerous, much flashier titles coming out this holiday season, but Persona 4 should not be overlooked.
411mania.com (Jan 04, 2009)
Persona 4 is most likely the Playstation 2’s last great game. While I said the same thing last year in regards to the third persona title, I really don’t think that another great one will be coming out in the year 2009. The system has run the gauntlet and it’s about time to put this puppy to bed. With games like P4 around, it’s no wonder why the system lasted so long. It just goes to show that graphics aren’t needed to make a great game. If you offer enough content, if you put enough work into it…you CAN make a great title and Persona 4 is a shining example of that.
Digital Chumps (Dec 03, 2008)
Think of Persona 4 as a streamlined, alternate universe version of Persona 3. It shares enough mechanics for casual idiots to lament its alleged lack of innovation, but it contains a narrative so unique and characters so fully realized that it instantly renderd those complaints as meaningless. For a genre many have abandoned on a system most have already left behind, Persona 4 may unfortunately be the most overlooked game this holiday season. It's quite a shame, because it stands on the same pantheon as some of the best titles ever released on Playstation 2.
Worth Playing (Dec 09, 2008)
On the surface, Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4 may seem like a simple repackaging of Persona 3, but under the surface lies something more.Persona 4 is Persona 3, but better in perhaps every way. Everything — from the story to the combat system to the dungeon crawling and Social Links — has been improved. Considering that Persona 3 was already an excellent game, Persona 4 is a true standout. If you're an RPG fan who owns a PlayStation 2, you owe it to yourself to pick up this game. You won't regret it.
Cheat Code Central (Dec, 2008)
Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4 is a must-own title, hands-down. Even if you have never played a Persona game before, the game doesn't assume familiarity with the series, and does a good job of accommodating those who might fall into this category. Persona 4 delivers a unique, story-focused gaming experience that has plenty of style, substance, and heart. Even though some might balk at buying a game for the aging PlayStation 2, this game is definitely worth blowing the dust off of your old system, and it is unquestionably a serious contender for the best RPG this year.
RPGFan (Sep 17, 2008)
When reflecting on the current trend in the game industry, the old adage "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" comes to mind, particularly in the east. With Nintendo being the sole exception, console makers, developers, and publishers are all focused on "better technology" without considering "better experiences" in gaming, and "innovation" has become an all-too-commonly misinterpreted term. Atlus is one company that has never settled for such complacency. Among the cookie-cutter sequels and half-hearted remakes, Persona 4 is a near flawless example of the perfect balance between "falling back on what works" and "pushing the genre forward." That said, I wholeheartedly recommend it as one of the best RPG experiences of the year.
VicioJuegos.com (Apr 07, 2009)
Este es el apartado técnico que realmente importa en un juego, y los chicos de Atlus lo saben. Con un enorme compendio de Persona (al más puro estilo de la Pokédex), 21 relaciones sociales con diez niveles de amistad en cada una y muchísimas opciones de diálogo, varios finales, un enemigo secreto desbloqueable la segunda vez que completas el juego, 80 horas de duración tirando por lo bajo y la historia más absorbente del catálogo de PS2, este juego sin duda hará las delicias de todos los que amen los RPG y de alguno de los que no conocen el género. El único problema que le podrías ver al juego es que está en inglés en los tiempos que corren.
Game Freaks 365 (Jan, 2009)
The PS2 was supposed to be dead and Atlus proved us all wrong. Not being much of an RPG fan, I was highly impressed with Persona 4. It is not every day that I come across an RPG that is both accessible and relatively deep. The most compelling element of the whole game is the storyline. You are going to be sucked in for dozens of hours trying to solve the murder mysteries. Atlus throws some controversial social topics in there as well, dealing with things such as sexuality. I just really enjoyed this game. I highly recommend that you pick it up and dust off your PS2 for one last time.
Game Revolution (Jan 05, 2009)
Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4 is one of those rare games that have such a nonchalant, organic, and artful message about humanity that it feels improper to dissect and analyze each of its parts without recognizing the strength of its narrative sum. It shows that a game doesn’t need nonstop, high-flyin’ action or an epic “save the world” theme for it to have lasting impact and purpose. A well-executed mystery with believable high school students and paranormal twists coupled with a challenging but uncomplicated combat system is enough to captivate players for more than eighty hours. Though Persona 4 may not be commercially successful, it reminds us that there are experiences that only traditional turn-based RPGs and the patient diligence it demands can convey; it is a genre that should not be shunted to the shadows but be re-accepted as a trusted Persona of gaming whose power should not be dismissed or forgotten.
RPGamer (Dec 08, 2008)
While fans of Persona 3 can rest assured that they will find a thoroughly enjoyable experience in Persona 4, in many ways it feels like a move sideways for the series rather than a step forward. There are many players who will likely find it to be an overall better experience than Persona 3, while others, like myself, will find the game's weak ending and various grievances prevent it from truly surpassing last year's hit title. The game's difficulty falls right in line with Persona 3, and once again provides both easy and hard modes for those looking for less or additional challenge. However, the overall challenge actually begins to dwindle as the game progresses, and most players will probably find it more challenging in the early portions, and less challenging later on. Persona 4 is also slightly shorter than Persona 3, but still manages to last a whopping eighty hours, far more than most RPGs.
RPGamer (Jan 25, 2009)
Persona 4 is a very solid RPG. When compared to Persona 3, it has quite a few pluses and a few minuses. The setting and overall feel of the game might not appeal as well to fans of the darker Shin Megami Tensei entries, but it stands up very well on its own. The improvements to the interface and battle system are more than enough to set it apart from its predecessor, though for people who have played both, it's difficult not to compare and contrast the two. Some might consider the game a quick cash-in, using the same formula from a game just slightly over a year old, but the story and characters are original enough to bring Persona 4 out of the shadows and into the light of the truth. That truth is: Persona 4 is a fantastic game.
GameLemon (May 19, 2009)
All in all, though, Persona 4 is terrific game well-worth the gaming bucks of any jRPG fan. It's a deep, multi-dimensional experience with many redeeming qualities like a great soundtrack and an engaging story which will keep you hooked for days. Now get your scrawny ass to GameStop and see for yourself.
Gamestyle (May 10, 2009)
Great sequels are few and far between nowadays. Developers and publishers seem content to churn out releases, slowly diluting any worthwhile aspects of the original release. In Persona 4, Atlus have achieved the summit of what an RPG should deliver, confirming the series as one of the finest exponents of the genre on any system. Such quality overcomes any minor flaws or complaints that Gamestyle could highlight. This is a marvellous game and as such warrants our highest recommendation.
GamesRadar (Dec 10, 2008)
Graphically, P4 is a very good-looking PS2 game. It understands its limitations very well, and its unique art design works within them. Full of lush colors, fully animated cutscenes and a catchy soundtrack, it's got some very stylish touches. If you don't want a heaping pile of Japanese culture, or don't like an odd or off-putting story, then maybe you should stay away. Otherwise, Persona 4 is a superb (if long) RPG, and probably the last great PS2 game.
IGN (Dec 09, 2008)
A significant improvement over the previous Persona games in many ways, Persona 4 provides a deeper dungeon crawling/social link experience that makes it engaging to play. Everything from the battle system and the dungeons that you fight through to the social links you develop and friend interaction that you do on your "off hours" has been radically improved in this game. While the pacing can be somewhat off, and some things feel repurposed or unaffected from previous games, Persona 4 really is an evolution of the RPG series, and an instant classic. Tie this in with a large number of bonus items included with the game, like the soundtrack CD which you may find yourself listening to in-between game or New Game + sessions, and you'll find this to be a great game that is rounding out the year on the venerable PS2.
GameSpot (Dec 10, 2008)
Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4 is an excellent sequel that builds upon an already successful formula by improving it in nearly every way. With a down-to-earth cast of likable characters, an intriguing story further realizes its cast by highlighting their psychological complexities and making them seem that much more real, and an engaging and fun combat system, it's sure to keep your attention for the duration. Whether you're a fan of the dark and bizarre Shin Megami Tensei series or a first time shadow fighter, Persona 4 is a superb role-playing adventure with something to offer to everyone.
Game Critics (Dec 04, 2008)
With those issues in mind, the fact remains that Persona 4's mechanics are ingenious, the characters are well-written and engaging, the voice work and music are top-quality, the art is beautifully stylish, and its basis in a real-world setting manages to avoid the usual genre clichés. Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4 is a true gamer's game. Atlus has outdone themselves again and proved that they are at the leading edge of role-playing. As far as I'm concerned, Persona 4 is the JRPG must-play of the year.
4Players.de (Mar 26, 2009)
Was eine Steigerung! Ich war ja schon immer ein Fan der Shin Megami Tensei-Spiele, aber irgendwie gab es immer auch eine Menge zu kritisieren. Zwar ist auch Persona 4 nicht perfekt, aber was Atlus hier geschaffen hat, ist mehr als nur ein Geheimtipp für Fans - es ist ein hell leuchtender Stern am systemübergreifenden Rollenspielhimmel! Also ein Spiel, das sich kein Genreliebhaber entgehen lassen sollte. Gut, man mimt abermals einen stummen, austauschbaren Protagonisten und schlurft durch architektonisch altbackene Zufallslevels. Aber die Charaktere wirken wesentlich authentischer, die Kulissen deutlich aufwändiger. Auch die Story um einen mysteriösen Serienkiller, der seine Opfer in einer durch eine mit der Realität verknüpften Parallelwelt in den Wahnsinn treibt, wurde trotz einiger Durchhänger ungemein packend inszeniert.
Game Observer (Apr 29, 2009)
Despite a few repetitive features and a slow beginning, it’s one of the best role-playing games of this generation’s platforms.
Gamers.at (Mar 11, 2009)
Einmal mehr vereinigt Persona 4 zwei völlig unterschiedliche Genres - traditionelles, rundebasiertes Japano-RPG plus Lebens-Simulation - und geht bei diesem ungewöhnlichen Mix als ungeschlagener Sieger hervor. Um Längen besser als Teil drei. Wie kann man da noch widerstehen?
GameZone (Dec 01, 2008)
One of the top five RPGs of 2008, Persona 4 provides a distinctive experience that isn’t found in any other RPG this year. Personally, I can’t wait to see Atlus move onto the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 with their titles in the future – gorgeous environments, bigger worlds, and shorter loading times are items on my Christmas wish list for the Persona franchise.
Jeuxvideo.com (Mar 16, 2009)
Non content de rectifier les quelques défauts laissés sur Persona 3, Atlus nous offre un quatrième volet parfaitement maîtrisé qui comblera sans aucun doute les attentes des fans de la série. Même si les nouveautés ne sont finalement pas très nombreuses par rapport au troisième opus, la formule se révèle suffisamment bien huilée pour scotcher le joueur durant plus d'une soixantaine d'heures, à condition toutefois d'adhérer au background réaliste et au rythme un peu lent de la progression.
Eurogamer.net (UK) (Mar 19, 2009)
Powerful rather than perfect, then, Persona 4's a status ailment rather than a killing blow - it's not going to bowl you over with one strike, but it will quietly gnaw away at you until you succumb.
Legendra (Nov 03, 2008)
On se retrouve alors, au final, avec un Persona 4 au meilleur de sa forme. S’il est quasiment meilleur en tous points que son prédécesseur, il souffre pourtant du syndrome du demi-jeu dont Atlus a le secret (Persona 2 Eternal Punishment, Digital Devil Saga 2, Etrian Odyssey 2, et maintenant Persona 4). Persona 3 devient son plus gros complexe. Car définitivement, le déroulement global et l’esthétisme général de Persona 4 doivent tout à Persona 3, et les 2 innovations et demie (pourtant excellentes) ne parviennent pas à enthousiasmer autant qu’il faudrait. Du reste, le thème scénaristique du « shadow » (le combat contre la face primitive d’un personnage) mange les ¾ de l’intrigue alors que le fait de revenir à des donjons traditionnels enlève une part de la magie de Persona 3. Cependant, le jeu reste prenant comme jamais grâce au gameplay ultra-intuitif et on savoure les absurdités des phases télévisées (même si elles auraient du aller encore plus loin dans le trip) le sourire en coin.
Pelaajalehti (Apr 02, 2009)
Hahmojen väliset sosiaaliset suhteet ovat erityisen tärkeitä pelin kannalta, sillä vahvat ystävyyssuhteet vahvistavat myös hahmojen ”persoonia” – eräänlaisia mystisiä henkiolentoja, jotka hoitelevat leijonanosan taisteluista. Niinpä pelissä käydään läpi loputtomalta tuntuvat määrät japanilaisten teinien sosiaalipornoa. Tiedän, että se kuulostaa sietämättömältä rastilta, mutta peli on käsikirjoitettu poikkeuksellisen hyvin ja käännöstyökin on sujuvaa. Niinpä hahmot ovat moniulotteisia ja mielenkiintoisia, ja mikä parasta, kaikkein luotaantyöntävimmät, pelityypille ominaiset hahmokliseet pysyvät kiitettävän hyvin poissa näkyvistä.
UOL Jogos (Jan 09, 2009)
"Persona 4" é um "Persona 3" com uma outra história. Assim, herda o que o antecessor tinha de bom, como a mecânica de combate e os elementos de simulador de vida, e introduz uma ótima trama policial. As qualidades do game são inegáveis, mas é improvável que, sendo pouco convencional em seus temas, caia nas graças do público em geral. Mas quem já foi fisgado pela excentricidade do game, não terá nenhum motivo para recusar as aventuras da Midnight Channel.
GameCola.net (Mar, 2009)
And there you have it. This review style might not actually work, but I figured I’d give it a try. It certainly seems more relevant to me than me driveling on in paragraph form.
G4 TV: X-Play (Dec 12, 2008)
Those are pretty minor complaints, though, and definitely not enough to give Persona 4 a pass. Aside from some minor quibbles, it’s beautifully made – an addictive game, an involving story, and a gorgeous piece of artwork all at once. While not perfect, Persona 4 is one of this year’s best RPG and another example of how even old hardware can still run some of the best games.
Game Informer Magazine (Dec, 2008)
The interplay of the simulation and combat elements form an addictive cycle that makes it easy to immerse yourself in the surreal world of Persona 4, but it isn’t for everyone. The game implements a deliberate and regimented structure, requiring a lot of planning, repetition, and level grinding. On the other hand, it rewards your effort with a compelling story, rock solid combat, and a fanaticism-inspiring persona fusion system. If you’ve got the time and dedication, Persona 4 will not disappoint.
Blend Games (Jan 12, 2009)
Persona 4 is a fun, addictive game that suffers from laziness in level design, a overbearing story that will have your finger glued to the “x” button, and release on outdated hardware. The cartoony style of the game doesn’t necessarily need the graphics that a next gen system can offer but, hell, Blue Dragon did it pretty well. P4 is huge, so this might be a few month project for some of you, but if you’re looking for a really addictive RPG (with that Anime flair) then this one’s for you.
Games TM (Dec 24, 2008)
There is a wealth of variety to discover in Persona 4, it simply lacks that special something that makes other RPGs, such as Tales Of Vesperia or Persona 3, so endearing. We hope Atlus takes its time crafting a more compelling and intelligent game with the next Persona, as the series has some remarkable potential.