Over the years I have dabbled in the Persona series, and plenty of games that borrow heavily from Persona.

One game I haven’t gone back to though is Persona 3. Luckily for me, I got to play a more enhanced version now as my first experience, and this game is excellent.

If you haven’t played Persona 3 yet, let me tell you it’s dark. Like really freaking dark.

The protagonist is a teen whose parents died.  Later on he gets attacked by some monsters and this awakens his Persona. This results in him joining the SEES who are a bunch of students who fight these monsters and explore a super mysterious tower. The plot twists and turns, and gets way freaking darker. The Persona games have some strange tones at times, but they tend to be a bit more bright and bubbly. This one on the other hand, while having some great JRPG humor, stays dark throughout.

Persona 3 Reload

When it comes to the gameplay, it’s tough to say how it compares to the original without that experience. I will say it doesn’t feel like a really old game.

The gameplay feels like it belongs in the current games. It’s a giant slice of JRPG battles and a whole lot of relationship development. There’s not too much to say about the battles. It’s just damn fine JRPG with a nice slice of character switching to mix it all up.

You will use a lot of your time in the game to do side activities to build these relationships. The one thing that always gets in my head is there are limited amount of time in the day to do these activities. I get so paranoid about missing out on stuff or missing specific moments that could screw me later in the game. If you are new to the series, all I can say is chill and just do what you want. There is heaps of time in the day, and just enjoy what unfolds in front of you. Even if you are annoyingly paranoid like me.

Persona 3 Reload

The game, as far as PS2 remakes go, looks stunning.

The graphical overhaul, it doesn’t look necessarily like a brand spanking new game but it looks a far cry from a ported PS2 game. The character models look a bit flat, but the detail looks really good.

The scenery, the background, and the general style look amazing.

It all adds up to a damn good looking game. Some of the animation when you explore can be a bit janky, but hell, some games in 2024 are like that at times. The voice acting is good enough, but the soundtrack is absolutely top notch.

If you haven’t played Persona yet, Persona 3 Reload is a damn good place to start. Just make sure you move on to Persona 4 Golden and Persona 5 Royale afterwards, because the series is fantastic. Just trust me, check it out.

Persona 3 Reloaded
Persona 3 Reload (PlayStation 5) Review
Game details

Released: February 2024
Rating: M15+
Platforms reviewed: PlayStation 5
Genre: JRPG
Developer: Atlus
Publisher: Atlus

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