Universal acclaim - based on 47 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 45 out of 47
  2. Negative: 0 out of 47
Buy On
  1. 90
    Everything from the battle system and the dungeons that you fight through to the social links you develop and friend interaction that you do on your "off hours" has been radically improved in this game.
  2. This stylish role-playing social-simulation game packs a great story, realistic characters, and dozens of hours of enjoyment.
  3. If you’ve never played Persona 3, then it’ll be overwhelmingly fresh entry to the RPG genre. If you’ve actually played Persona 3, then there have been more then enough changes to warrant a revisit through the world of Inaba.
  4. The interplay of the simulation and combat elements form an addictive cycle that makes it easy to immerse yourself in the surreal world of Persona 4, but it isn’t for everyone. The game implements a deliberate and regimented structure, requiring a lot of planning, repetition, and level grinding.
  5. With a play time between forty and fifty hours, different difficulty levels, and multiple endings, Persona 4 will keep you hanging on for quite some time.
  6. Everything — from the story to the combat system to the dungeon crawling and Social Links — has been improved. Considering that Persona 3 was already an excellent game, Persona 4 is a true standout.
  7. Persona 4 is not just as good as its prequel: it is even better. With a much more intriguing plot and a solid gameplay Persona 4 is a great RPG which lasts long and offers lots of contents and optional features along with a really enjoyable battle system. Fans of the genre must truly purchase such a brilliant masterpiece.
  8. 100
    If you only buy one more PlayStation 2 game before retiring the trusty system to that dusty closet, make sure this is it.
  9. Powerful rather than perfect, then, Persona 4's a status ailment rather than a killing blow - it's not going to bowl you over with one strike, but it will quietly gnaw away at you until you succumb.
  10. One of those rare games that have such a nonchalant, organic, and artful message about humanity that it feels improper to dissect and analyze each of its parts without recognizing the strength of its narrative sum. It shows that a game doesn’t need nonstop, high-flyin’ action or an epic “save the world” theme for it to have lasting impact and purpose.
  11. 100
    I can't recommend this innovative experience highly enough, and from first time visitors to the Velvet Room to jaded MegaTen fanatics, Persona 4 is an absolute must buy.
  12. 92
    This is undoubtedly one of the best role playing games recently made, and a must buy for PlayStation 2 users, although unfortunately it is in English.
  13. 100
    What really sets Persona 4 apart, though, is its endearing, relatable cast.
  14. If you don't want a heaping pile of Japanese culture, or don't like an odd or off-putting story, then maybe you should stay away. Otherwise, Persona 4 is a superb (if long) RPG, and probably the last great PS2 game.
  15. Atlus managed to combine the best of what already worked well with fresh new ideas and tweaks, and the end result is a fantastic role-playing game -- definitely a shoe-in for RPG of the year. Unless you dislike the genre, do not, under any circumstances, miss Persona 4.
  16. Persona 4 has unique style and shows a great balancing between arcade and simulation. Despite some light gameplay issues, this episode will make almost every fan more than happy, mostly for the great narration... Technically outstanding and well localized, this could really be the Playstation 2 swan song.
  17. games(TM)
    We hope Atlus takes its time to deliver a more compelling and intelligent game with the next Persona, as the series has some remarkable potential. [Jan 2009, p.126]
  18. If you enjoy RPGs even in the slightest, you must own Persona 4. It is quite possibly, the greatest PS2 title ever made.
  19. 80
    Aside from some minor quibbles, it’s beautifully made – an addictive game, an involving story, and a gorgeous piece of artwork all at once. While not perfect, Persona 4 is one of this year’s best RPG and another example of how even old hardware can still run some of the best games.
  20. 100
    P4 is constantly enveloped by an aura of dire urgency.
  21. Atlus has really created something special with Persona 4, because it still maintains the freshness of Persona 3, while also being different and in many ways superior.
  22. The Japanese role-player grows up, with a fantastic mix of traditional gameplay and daring plot.
  23. Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4 is a sublime RPG. There isn't much wrong if we look at the fundamentals or the overall feel of the game. Even the fact that the game appears on the obsolete PlayStation 2 doesn't affect the quality of the game says enough. And on top of that, the game will be in stores at a reduced price and with a free soundtrack. Nothing less than an instant buy.
  24. Pelit (Finland)
    Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4 finally makes its wonderful EU debut after a long wait. Atlus manages to combine ordinary high school setting with the weird and enthralling shadow world, this time behind TV screen in mysterious world the heroes explore. Working on your social links is oddly addicting, and combat system with plethora of Personas to choose from and create is well made and polished. While the story overall might pale a bit compared to Persona 3, in almost every other way Persona 4 is better. [May 2009]
  25. Electronic Gaming Monthly
    If you're a role-playing freak who hasn't given this series a shot, I'm comin' to take your nerd card. [Jan 2009, p.88]
  26. Playstation Official Magazine UK
    A creative, compelling experience. [May 2009, p.100]
  27. Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4 is a true gamer's game. Atlus has outdone themselves again and proved that they are at the leading edge of role-playing.
  28. Atlus' latest game for PlayStation 2 is with no doubt a masterpiece for this console. It takes the genre far away from what we're used to seeing nowadays. It's not the best JRPG so far, though, but it has all it takes to become an instant classic. If you're willing to enjoy a never-ending game with a immersive story and a lot of characters to deal with, do not hesitate, this is your best choice.
  29. Look, folks. If you have any interest in RPGs, you need to play Persona 4. Period. It’s one of the best titles available on the PS2. In fact, it just might be the console's swan song.
  30. 90
    Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4 offers a unique and unforgettable Japanese RPG experience that even succeeds at being significantly different from what Persona 3 offered. Persona 4 is the kind of game that will win back gamers who grew tired of the genre a long time ago.
  31. Persona 4 is a well-crafted game dense with content that achieves a compelling balance between traditional RPG dungeon crawling and, shockingly, what can actually be considered role-playing. In its 60-plus hours you’ll experience a tight, well-structured story, and the liberty to freely develop characters and progress at your own discretion.
  32. In Persona 4, Atlus have achieved the summit of what an RPG should deliver, confirming the series as one of the finest exponents of the genre on any system.
  33. 68
    As a swan song to the PS2 Persona 4 isn’t the highest note and all the bizarre characters, storylines and Personas you unlock can’t change that. But if you don’t mind grinding too much then there is some enjoyment to be had.
  34. 100
    Persona 4 is the Playstation 2’s new king of JRPGs and is awesome sending off for the system. Every single man, woman and child who has any interest in the story or has even the tiniest interest in the RPG genre has to check it out.
  35. Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4 is, in my opinion, the pinnacle of the series. It really is one of the best RPGs I’ve played in quite a long while, and even though the competition is thin, that doesn’t stop Atlus’ latest effort from being a clear-cut winner.
  36. Persona is a RPG with a strong story, a decent battle system and interesting characters. It is also a lot of fun to upgrade your Persona’s and other abilities. The game starts a bit slow, but is really hard to let go when the story unfolds. Persona 4 is a game that will bring back life in the good old PlayStation 2.
  37. PSM3 Magazine UK
    A triumph. [May 2009, p.77]
  38. 94
    Among the cookie-cutter sequels and half-hearted remakes, Persona 4 is a near flawless example of the perfect balance between "falling back on what works" and "pushing the genre forward." That said, I wholeheartedly recommend it as one of the best RPG experiences of the year.
  39. While Persona 4 manages to be the very definition of a hardcore Japanese role playing game, and possibly one of the better (if not best) role playing game that came out in 2008 as well.
  40. Playstation: The Official Magazine (US)
    This is probably Atlus USA's best work yet, with a script full of lively, natural-sounding dialogue and a cast of talented actors who take that dialogue and run with it. [Feb 2009, p.72]
  41. If Persona 3 could be considered the Godfather of RPGs, then Persona 4 could be considered the Godfather II.
  42. Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4 is the last great JRPG we'll ever see on the PlayStation 2, and one of the best on this platform, with an almost perfect combat system and a very beautiful graphic section.
  43. An outstanding achievement in gaming. There’s no question that this is going to be one of my top games of the year, and any fan of JRPGs should be playing it when it’s released next week.
  44. 80
    Persona 4 has its flaws. Some carried over from Persona 3, and some of its own creation. Initially it’s hard to look past these and the game feels a shadow of its predecessor.
  45. 90
    While fans of Persona 3 can rest assured that they will find a thoroughly enjoyable experience in Persona 4, in many ways it feels like a move sideways for the series rather than a step forward.
  46. Two utterly different genres merge to achieve something really special - for the fourth time. A must-have for any gamer passionate about J-RPGs.
  47. 100
    The truly stunning thing about Persona 4 is that it just doesn't have any glaring flaws. Even though it doesn't stand up to the graphics of the Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3, the clever art style makes up for that. Those who despise reading large blocks of text in games will be pleasantly surprised by the solid voice-over work applied to almost every conversation.

Awards & Rankings

#1 Most Discussed PS2 Game of 2008
#1 Most Shared PS2 Game of 2008
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 689 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 67 out of 76
  2. Negative: 3 out of 76
  1. Feb 5, 2012
    Shin Megami's Persona series exemplified with it's latest iteration. Each character possesses real problems and are for the most part relateShin Megami's Persona series exemplified with it's latest iteration. Each character possesses real problems and are for the most part relate able and enjoyable. There have been many recent spinoff's including manga and anime iterations. It seems that although this game has a more niche appeal than the more mainstream games such as FF have it is still an amazing peice Full Review »
  2. ERB
    Jul 25, 2013
    I love this game.Best PS2 game I have ever played.I love this game.Best PS2 game I have ever played. Full Review »
  3. Nov 16, 2012
    Oh boy, this is one of the greatest games ever made. The Persona series is probably the greatest series of all-time. This takes everythingOh boy, this is one of the greatest games ever made. The Persona series is probably the greatest series of all-time. This takes everything from Persona 3, and adds to it, making it a tad more difficult and adding some new gameplay changes. This game has fantastic combat, allowing you to switch between your crew and control what attacks they use, making it much more tactical. Outside of that, the world they built was fantastic, I've grown to love every single one of these characters. The story is great & very dark, just what Atlus is known for. The soundtrack, just like Persona 3, is absolutely top-notch, even better than Persona 3 in my opinion, it really gets you immersed in the world they created. I simply cannot wait for Persona 5. Full Review »