I finished a JRPG and damn does it feel good

18 Aug

Much as I enjoy RPG as a genre in video games, leveling up your characters and being immersed in the story, I never really gotten around to finishing playing. It takes too long and I would lose interest as the “grinding” (i.e. doing same stuff over and over and over…and over) leaves me feeling burnt out.

nothing but a barely cute showboat at the high school competition.

barely cute.

Persona 4, however, is a different story.

My friend Albert got me Persona 4 Golden for the PS Vita last fall.

When I first began playing, it was okay but didn’t grab my interest as much. The Fusion (combining your ‘Pokemon spirits’ to make bigger, powerful ones) got me confused, Social Links came off as tacky (“oh so-and-so opened up a little…*flash* friendship leveled up!). But while the game was not hinged on the “save the princess/world/both”, I was intrigued on solving the mystery of  who was committing these murders and kidnappings in Inaba, a small town in Japan.

(So okay, you can argue eventually it becomes “save the world”, but by that point in the game, I’m already invested. Not some old stranger going up to me and without any context say “save the world, tarnations!”)

Another friend, who is not familiar with RPGs, asked me to describe what Persona 4 Golden is like, and I said something along the lines like: “Bunch of high school kids investigate a murder mystery and it plays like Pokemon.”

After about seven hours into the game, something clicked. Maybe it’s the story got more interesting or the Fusion made sense. So fast-forward some 93 hours, I finally achieved getting the True Ending after getting two bad ones. I always thought completing a JRPG was somewhat impossible as I’ll easily be sidetracked by side quests and other video games on my backlog. But have a fascinating story, smooth interface, and the option for my character to date someone (Yukiko’s taken, sorry), then I’m onboard.

Also, after having played the game, it made this comic pretty damn awesome to read. (There’s always the animated/voiced version on Youtube. Do read it first.)

Felt so good to have played it well. I really don’t want to leave Inaba. (I will return someday, maybe.) So now I’m playing Persona Arena and Persona 3. Looking forward to Persona 5.




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