Persona 4 Arena Review

Mike Kayatta

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Persona 4 Arena Review

An excellent fighting game for Persona fans, an excellent Persona game for fighting fans.

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ChupathingyX

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I just finished Persona 4 for the first time a couple of weeks ago and loved it, so this may be the first fighting game I ever buy.
 

neonsword13-ops

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Mar 28, 2011
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Not 5 Stars?

RAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAGE!!!

Nah, just kidding. Very good review.

An easy to play, difficult to master fighter. Easily one of the best games of 2012 for me.
 

Truly-A-Lie

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So glad the response to this has been as positive as I'd hoped, it certainly had potential to go wrong. Now I wait patiently for the game to be released in Europe...
 

Fappy

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I'm going to play this over the weekend, so we will see if agree with your assessment. Sounds about right though from what I have seen.

The bit about the AI not being as good with some characters as others... I think that's just an Arc System Works thing. In BlazBlue a high level AI Tsubaki is a fucking god compared to some of the other characters in the game.
 

AbstractStream

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I'd like to say that this is an extremely accurate review (even the 30 minutes between fights for story mode). I've lost quite a couple of hours to P4: Arena already and I love it. LOVE IT! I'm pretty tempted to buy some dlc, but I'll hold off for now.

ChupathingyX said:
I just finished Persona 4 for the first time a couple of weeks ago and loved it, so this may be the first fighting game I ever buy.
My bias for Persona aside, I'd recommend it.
 

Shinsei-J

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Getting my Vita tomorrow and picking this up soon after.
Can't wait........... I want it! NOW!!!
 

Ghonzor

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I should probably get a Vita before Golden comes out. And I should get this.
I've been so excited about more P4 since the announcement. Cannot wait
 

StriderShinryu

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Like with pretty much all of ArkSys' fighters, I appreciate the work they've done but there's just something about the game that totally turns me off and kills my interest in actually playing it. Oh well, the reception amongst the fighting game community so far has been positive enough that I'm happy those who are interested are actually getting a good game instead of a cheap cash in.
 

Rad Party God

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I can haz PC release?.

I think I'm getting a PS3 just for this game, there's just no love for PC gaming with fighting games :(

Except Capcom maybe (I'm still waiting for UMvC3), but not from other developers/publishers, like Atlus/ArcSys.
 

Grahav

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I have never played a Persona game. A shame since I have some knowledge of the plot and it seems to be a very good story.

I am going to experiment this game I hope the story is not too dependable on Persona 4 to be understood.

Still, I have a question. Why the Escapist hasn't made a Skullgirls review? A brand new fighting game via DLC which broke 50.000 copies in ten days. I was thinking that the staff wasn't into fighting games and then suddenly this enthusiastic reviw appeared. What happened?
 

Mike Kayatta

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Aug 2, 2011
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DVS BSTrD said:
Is Elizabeth this game's MetaKnight?
Everyone seems to be fairly balanced, but we won't know any of the busted tier characters for a couple days, when pros have a chance to show whose a god and who isn't.
 

Mike Kayatta

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NameIsRobertPaulson said:
DVS BSTrD said:
Is Elizabeth this game's MetaKnight?
Everyone seems to be fairly balanced, but we won't know any of the busted tier characters for a couple days, when pros have a chance to show whose a god and who isn't.
Yeah, I am far from pro but , personally, I did seem to jive better with Elizabeth than the others - probably the only reason why she looks like more of an ass kicker in the video. :)
 

StriderShinryu

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Grahav said:
I have never played a Persona game. A shame since I have some knowledge of the plot and it seems to be a very good story.

I am going to experiment this game I hope the story is not too dependable on Persona 4 to be understood.

Still, I have a question. Why the Escapist hasn't made a Skullgirls review? A brand new fighting game via DLC which broke 50.000 copies in ten days. I was thinking that the staff wasn't into fighting games and then suddenly this enthusiastic reviw appeared. What happened?
Yeah, the staff and (more importantly) many of the users of The Escapist are, at best, not overly knowledgable about the genre or are, at worst, outwardly hostile towards it. We do definitely have some diehard fighting game fans here but this just isn't the place to be if you're looking for consistent and solid coversage of fighters.
 

muffinatorXII

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am i the only one who got really annoyed when he said that story in fighting games is "counter to the genre" i realize it's become the norm for fighting games to have little or no story but that doesn't mean it's "counter to the genre"
 

antipunt

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Very nice. Sounds much better than I even thought it could be. And a story mode too? 30 hours. Holy crap what is this?!

One tiny fear: is the story good.
Persona games are usually awesome b/c of its story/character development. With the fighting-game tie in the multiple characters that you can choose from, I wonder if the story will feel cheap/light/unauthentic :(

Be keeping my eye on this one though
 

edgecult

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antipunt said:
Very nice. Sounds much better than I even thought it could be. And a story mode too? 30 hours. Holy crap what is this?!

One tiny fear: is the story good.
Persona games are usually awesome b/c of its story/character development. With the fighting-game tie in the multiple characters that you can choose from, I wonder if the story will feel cheap/light/unauthentic :(

Be keeping my eye on this one though
The story is pretty good. (I'm still working through my 2nd character run now.) It's got a running story for every character in the game showing their point of view from each time they cross with another along the way and seems like it's leading to something bigger in the end. (someone sorta spoiled the ending of the over arching plot for me but I wont do the same for ya.) Suffice to say it's a solid persona story line.
 

Denamic

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An SMT game with lots of text in it?
This is clearly something to complain about.
 

Username Redacted

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NameIsRobertPaulson said:
DVS BSTrD said:
Is Elizabeth this game's MetaKnight?
Everyone seems to be fairly balanced, but we won't know any of the busted tier characters for a couple days, when pros have a chance to show whose a god and who isn't.
Ummm, people already have a pretty good idea who the "best" and "worst" characters are in the game given that it's been available to play in Japanese arcades for ~5 months. That said while there definitely are better and worse characters there aren't any that (at least with current information) are going to be some meta-game warping force of nature.
 

antipunt

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edgecult said:
antipunt said:
Very nice. Sounds much better than I even thought it could be. And a story mode too? 30 hours. Holy crap what is this?!

One tiny fear: is the story good.
Persona games are usually awesome b/c of its story/character development. With the fighting-game tie in the multiple characters that you can choose from, I wonder if the story will feel cheap/light/unauthentic :(

Be keeping my eye on this one though
The story is pretty good. (I'm still working through my 2nd character run now.) It's got a running story for every character in the game showing their point of view from each time they cross with another along the way and seems like it's leading to something bigger in the end. (someone sorta spoiled the ending of the over arching plot for me but I wont do the same for ya.) Suffice to say it's a solid persona story line.
oh...wow cool. How does it compare to other Persona stories ( I don't even know if this is a fair question..). Have you played P3 or P4?
 

Pandora92

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It's not really all that unusual for a story based game to have a continuation in a sort of spin-off fighter, although I guess it's not exactly common either. Melty Blood originally had a story mode which continued on where Tsukihime left off, although it was extremely short compared to the actual VN, and they got rid of it entirely in later versions.
 

edgecult

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antipunt said:
edgecult said:
antipunt said:
Very nice. Sounds much better than I even thought it could be. And a story mode too? 30 hours. Holy crap what is this?!

One tiny fear: is the story good.
Persona games are usually awesome b/c of its story/character development. With the fighting-game tie in the multiple characters that you can choose from, I wonder if the story will feel cheap/light/unauthentic :(

Be keeping my eye on this one though
The story is pretty good. (I'm still working through my 2nd character run now.) It's got a running story for every character in the game showing their point of view from each time they cross with another along the way and seems like it's leading to something bigger in the end. (someone sorta spoiled the ending of the over arching plot for me but I wont do the same for ya.) Suffice to say it's a solid persona story line.
oh...wow cool. How does it compare to other Persona stories ( I don't even know if this is a fair question..). Have you played P3 or P4?
I have indeed played them both and actually am watching the p4 anime as well. (and replaying 3 on portable F-protag story) Over all it's interesting though if you played the 4th game some of the exposition in the beginning will drag on a touch. (Kinda covers what happened with the 4th game without going into to much detail so people can go back for it later if they want to get up to speed) It would depend on what you mean by compare. Overall it's a good quality story played like a visual novel esc deal with fighting matches to break up the various interactions. -shrug- the quality and character dev is there and really I can't say to much on exactly what makes it half as awesome as it is without spoiling.
 

Aiddon_v1legacy

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neonsword13-ops said:
DVS BSTrD said:
Is Elizabeth this game's MetaKnight?
She has powerful SP attacks, but her HP is the lowest in the game.

So she is fairly balanced.
According to Dustloop the "top tier" characters are Aigis and Mitsuru currently. Elizabeth is actually rather low.

Anyway, just finished the entire story mode. I actually that while the narrative was interesting, it also runs into the problem of a LOT of characters' stories being very similar at times to the point of having literally the exact same scenes only with the central character being changed. However, the game ends with a BUNCH of mysteries, obviously signalling stuff that will happen in Persona 5 which intrigues me. I actually hope ASW comes back to this to update the game with more characters from the Persona series, like maybe seeing Koromaru or Ken.
 

Mahorfeus

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The allusion to Nyarlathotep being back and the P4 crew heading to Port City just screams sequel. But will it be Arena 2 or Persona 5?

The game is rather solid so far. I found myself laughing out loud several times, and lo and behold, it has multiple endings for the characters.
 

Alaster Angelo

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Mahorfeus said:
The allusion to Nyarlathotep being back and the P4 crew heading to Port City just screams sequel. But will it be Arena 2 or Persona 5?

The game is rather solid so far. I found myself laughing out loud several times, and lo and behold, it has multiple endings for the characters.
Hopefully the next Arena game, I don't want a bunch of old characters in Persona 5.
 

yunabomb

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I wouldn't strongly consider speculation over character strength early in the release. Let's all remember when SCIV Hilde was bottom tier.
 

neonsword13-ops

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yunabomb said:
I wouldn't strongly consider speculation over character strength early in the release. Let's all remember when SCIV Hilde was bottom tier.
You probably don't know this, but Arena's been out in Japanese arcades since March. So all of the characters have already been set into some pretty accurate tiers.

And apparently Naoto is a bottom tier character.

Ha.


I'll show the fools that made that list how powerful Naoto can really be.

Like, ya know.. once I practice some more. And more. And more.
 

MonkeyPunch

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SupahGamuh said:
I can haz PC release?.

I think I'm getting a PS3 just for this game, there's just no love for PC gaming with fighting games :(

Except Capcom maybe (I'm still waiting for UMvC3), but not from other developers/publishers, like Atlus/ArcSys.
No PC release happening I'm afraid. Something which the developers themselves confirmed on multiple occasions. I asked myself and got that response too.
Also, no point in waiting for a UMvC3 PC release because that is also not happening. Ever.
Besides the fact that the license for the Marvel stuff has expired for that project, again the developers have said that there's no chance of a PC release. (nothing more is coming to the consoles either)
The best you can hope for from other companies are Japanese Indy fighters that appear now and again. Even ArcSys neglect the PC with only the odd release (a version of BB - back in the day a couple of versions of GG but again none kept up to date) and again often the "support" is more than lacklustre.
The only other fighter coming to PC in the future worth mentioning is Skull Girls, if I haven't forgotten any others.

But yeah, it's tragic that you can mostly only get Capcom's fighters on PC and even then they are gimped and neglected and bar the performance boost (which is really nice, not going to lie) it's always more advisable to get the console releases if you want to be "serious" about the game and play online. (and then people like Capcom will say how sales on PC aren't really viable... really? You sell us badly supported, late and neglected versions and you wonder why they don't sell? Get someone with a p.h.d so we can figure that one out!)

I would have loved a P4A version for PC because the game looks genuinely fun but there's no point pining since it won't happen.

:(
 

Grahav

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StriderShinryu said:
Grahav said:
I have never played a Persona game. A shame since I have some knowledge of the plot and it seems to be a very good story.

I am going to experiment this game I hope the story is not too dependable on Persona 4 to be understood.

Still, I have a question. Why the Escapist hasn't made a Skullgirls review? A brand new fighting game via DLC which broke 50.000 copies in ten days. I was thinking that the staff wasn't into fighting games and then suddenly this enthusiastic reviw appeared. What happened?
Yeah, the staff and (more importantly) many of the users of The Escapist are, at best, not overly knowledgable about the genre or are, at worst, outwardly hostile towards it. We do definitely have some diehard fighting game fans here but this just isn't the place to be if you're looking for consistent and solid coversage of fighters.
I suspected that. I wished it was paranoia.

Sigh.

We still have Shoryuken, at least.

Still disappointed.
 

krazykidd

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neonsword13-ops said:
yunabomb said:
I wouldn't strongly consider speculation over character strength early in the release. Let's all remember when SCIV Hilde was bottom tier.
You probably don't know this, but Arena's been out in Japanese arcades since March. So all of the characters have already been set into some pretty accurate tiers.

And apparently Naoto is a bottom tier character.

Ha.


I'll show the fools that made that list how powerful Naoto can really be.

Like, ya know.. once I practice some more. And more. And more.
This. Naoto has AMAZING potential , but she won'T be easy to play at first, honestly, i give it about a year before anyone discover her true potential . But while thats happening i'll enjoy being Elezibeth.
 

Aeryn Seoung

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I need to grab this game as soon as I can...

Also, can I please not be the only one who laughed at "The Imperious Queen of Executions" for Mitsuru...?
 

Adultism

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Pretty solid. The game can be really hard too which is awesome. Score attack has to be one of the funniest things to watch. I did the tutorial and then went straight to score attack and lost after getting like two hits in. Though after I trained for a bit I was able to beat it. It isn't TOO hard but its very challenging.