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Persona: Revelations
- PlayStation

Breaking the Mold

Latest Update March 01, 1997  

Persona is Chapter One of the Revelations series. This massive story arc deals with the near future, and mankind's discovery of dimensional travel. As the player, you will control a band of ten characters that will join and leave your party at key moments in the game. You will only be able to control five of these characters at once. The plot is fairly twisted and chock full of mystery and suspense. You'll never truly know what happens until you're in the final phase of a key moment in the story. Sometimes you even travel to alternate dimensions, where you will meet yourself in the past, present, or future.

As far as gameplay goes, there has never been an RPG as vast as Persona. Throughout the game you'll encounter three different views - isometric, which is used for walking and key plot moments in single rooms, first-person, which is used for building and dungeon walking, and overhead, which is used for city walking. Each of these different modes features a detailed map that should help you if you are lost.

The mechanics of the game are similar to any RPG; you can heal your party, talk to people in the city, and buy or sell goods. One thing Persona does do that is rarely seen is allow for the movement of characters in a standard battle. You'll need to find which formation works best for your party. Plus, you can also give the command for one turn and save it to memory, then you can recall it for easy auto attacks. Figuring out which weapon to use with each character is also extremely difficult. Some characters work better in the front line, and others (who are weaker) are better for the back row. You'll usually want to keep your projectile attacks (bow, guns) in the back, and the hand combat in the front.

The biggest perk in Persona revolves around the enemies. There are over three hundred demons, each with at least four detailed animations. When entering combat, you'll first have the option to analyze them (see their powers), attack (the standard default), or talk to them. The conversations are tricky, since each demon has different characteristics (being sad, stupid, happy, etc.). All your characters are loaded with different commands and things to say. For instance, the smart character can give a speech, the trouble maker can lie, the attractive member can flirt, and the main character can persuade. The monsters will respond in four ways - anger, happiness, fear, or interest. If you can con your way through a conversation, you can obtain certain items, experience, get them to drop their guard, or you can piss them off and give them the chance to attack first.

Appropriately, all the magic is done through the use of Personas. This power is actually derived from someone else's soul that is stuck in your body. Starting out you'll only be able to summon one Persona, but as you progress through the game you'll obtain more and more. The way to gain Persona is to persuade an enemy to give you their spell card (life essence). When you obtain two different cards you can combine them into a new Persona. Since there are at least two hundred enemies that give cards, you should be able to obtain at least one hundred different Personas.

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Role-Playing Game
Special Features:
Over 100 Personas (Magical Characters), Five Man Parties, Complex Battles With Conversation Option, First Person, Isometric, and Overhead Views, Hundreds of Items and Weapons, and a Modern Day Plot
Created by:
Published by:
Current Media


Archived Media


Andy, The Game Hombre
Concept: 8
Graphics: 8.5
Sound: 7.5
Playability: 8
Entertainment: 8
"Although this RPG is somewhat of a slow mover, the entertaining story and inventive play dynamics more than make up for its slight shortcomings. I especially like that you can talk to your enemies and try to persuade them to your way of thinking. It makes for some hilarious moments. Otherwise, this game is basically everything you'd expect from an RPG: lots of enemies, decent graphics, and tons of items. If you are looking for a good waste of a lot of time, Persona will certainly consume your life."

Jon, The Greedy Gamer
Concept: 9.25
Graphics: 8.5
Sound: 8.25
Playability: 9
Entertainment: 9
"Persona is a fascinating blend of 90210 and classic RPG action. If only my high school was like the one in Persona. But alas, it wasn't, and so it's to Persona I turn to fill that void of fantasy and intrigue that's missing in my daily life. Moving from building to building completing the many sub-missions, all of this set within a small town gone awry, is a tremendous gaming scenario. But the best part, by far, is interacting with all the monsters... the bribing, flattery and lying are a giant leap forward in terms of character/enemy interface. I don't know if this should be your first RPG, but one thing's for sure; if you do play it, it won't be your last."

Reiner, The Raging Gamer
Concept: 9
Graphics: 8.75
Sound: 9
Playability: 8.5
Entertainment: 9
"Persona is a complex game that is as constantly challenging as it is entertaining. The three different aspects of gameplay and the amount of options throughout the game are hands down unbeatable and incomparable to any other RPG. Plus, all the little visual enhancements like the character animations, the extremely detailed backgrounds, and beauty of the story are a work of art. For the entire RPG nation out there, I recommend this game to you all. This is the best PlayStation RPG available. Its numerous endings and plot twists will surely keep you playing for months!"