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Junkyard is a grim wasteland, a realm of eternal rain and eternal battle. Its inhabitants are divided into six tribes that constantly fight each other, each trying to become the champion, earning a passage to the promised land Nirvana. Serph is the leader of the Embryon, a small tribe based in the Muladhara region of Junkyard. One day, the Embryon and their rivals, the Vanguards, find a strange pod, which both believe to be a weapon placed by the other tribe. During the fight, the pod opens, and as a result Serph and his lieutenants transform into demons, literally devouring the Vanguards.

The pod disappears, and in its place Serph finds a mysterious, yet strangely familiar black-haired girl, who remembers nothing about herself. Serph and his friends try to find out who or what sent her into Junkyard, what is the meaning of their demonic transformation, and, ultimately, who they truly are and how they ended up in that desolate place. Meanwhile, the battle for survival continues, and soon only one tribe will retain the hope of leaving the Junkyard forever.

Digital Devil Saga is a role-playing game set in a post-apocalyptic world with elements of Indian culture, influenced by the teachings and mythology of Hinduism. The game belongs to the Megami Tensei universe; it is regarded as a spin-off, comparable in this position to the Persona series. The game shares several thematic and gameplay-related elements with other Megaten titles: heavy mythological overtones, post-apocalyptic setting, fairly complex dungeons, elemental and support magic, etc. However, as opposed to other Megaten games, it is impossible to communicate with random enemies (demons) by talking to them, or summon them in battles in this game.

Instead, Serph and his companions are able to turn into demons themselves. During the turn-based combat, the characters can fight as humans (using guns); however, transforming into their demonic counterparts is the only way to use magic and special abilities. Characters learn new spells, attacks, and immunities by buying Mantras, which act like equipment sets. Mantras are located on a grid and divided into categories; in order to unlock stronger Mantras within the same category, the character must first purchase a weaker one, moving on a defined path. Abilities contained within a Mantra are learned gradually, depending on the amount of Atma Points (AP) gathered in battles. Using devouring abilities to finish off an enemy greatly increases the amount of AP received.

The weakpoint-based combat system has been carried over from Shin Megami Tensei: Nocturne. Player-controlled party and enemies are able to gain extra turns when exploiting physical or elemental weaknesses of the opponents.


Shin Megami Tensei: Digital Devil Saga PlayStation 2 World map
Shin Megami Tensei: Digital Devil Saga PlayStation 2 Fight in human or daemon form
Shin Megami Tensei: Digital Devil Saga PlayStation 2 Select mantra to learn at mantra grid
Shin Megami Tensei: Digital Devil Saga PlayStation 2 Zoomed-out mantra grid

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Alternate Titles

  • "数码恶魔传说" -- Chinese spelling (simplified)
  • "Digital Devil Saga: Avatar Tuner" -- Japanese title

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User Reviews

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Critic Reviews

Game Chronicles PlayStation 2 Mar 16, 2005 10 out of 10 100
RPGFan PlayStation 2 Apr 05, 2005 93 out of 100 93
Legendra PlayStation 2 Oct 06, 2004 9 out of 10 90
4Players.de PlayStation 2 Aug 20, 2006 83 out of 100 83
Eurogamer.net (UK) PlayStation 2 Jul 12, 2006 8 out of 10 80
Legendra PlayStation 2 Jun 27, 2007 8 out of 10 80
Video Game Talk PlayStation 2 Apr 15, 2005 4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars 80
GameSpy PlayStation 2 Apr 07, 2005 3.5 Stars3.5 Stars3.5 Stars3.5 Stars3.5 Stars 70
Games TM PlayStation 2 Apr, 2006 5 out of 10 50
Background PlayStation 2 Mar, 2007 Unscored Unscored


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Optional boss battle (Spoilers!)

Once you have played the game through for the first time and saved a clear "new game" file, an optional boss battle against a creature called Hitoshura (Demi-Fiend) is unlocked. Beside being considered by many players the hardest boss in RPG history (he is indeed almost impossible to defeat), Demi-Fiend has also quite an interesting background story: he is the protagonist of Shin Megami Tensei: Nocturne!


The US version of "Digital Devil Saga" comes as a "Deluxe Box Set". Packaged in a box (same height as a regular keep case, but double width, so that it will be able to host the upcoming sequel as well), it contains, beside the sealed keep case with the manual and the game, a "Bonus Materials" box that shows a picture of the upcoming "Digital Devil Saga 2" and an ad for Stella Deus, and that contains the soundtrack CD of this game.

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Contributed to by Charly2.0 (261117) and Unicorn Lynx (181409)
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