Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 2 - Innocent Sin PSP

  • Publisher: Atlus
  • Release Date: Sep 20, 2011
User Score
8.6

Generally favorable reviews- based on 76 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 63 out of 76
  2. Negative: 6 out of 76
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  1. Aug 17, 2015
    7
    Once a legend, always a legend. And all the same, once a game with problems, always a game with problems.

    Of course some problems age well, some don't. If your graphics were crap when you came out, it's still gonna be crap 10 years later. When your gameplay was crap, it's gonna get a whole lot crappier with time, since new, better and more polished games will have come out till then and
    Once a legend, always a legend. And all the same, once a game with problems, always a game with problems.

    Of course some problems age well, some don't. If your graphics were crap when you came out, it's still gonna be crap 10 years later. When your gameplay was crap, it's gonna get a whole lot crappier with time, since new, better and more polished games will have come out till then and the progress will make you look a whole lot worse.

    Innocent Sin is a game that has aged overall quite badly. Before I started it, it was presented as "the True Persona" while P3 was sort of the Final Fantasy VII of the Persona series, the game that put the series in the spotlight but was overall far, far worse. Considering that I despise FF7 and think very highly of P3, my expectations were soaring, and to be honest, they were somewhat satisfied.

    The biggest and pretty much only quality of P2IS is it's story and cast. I wouldn't spoil anything to you, but let's just say that this is probably the most fantastic story I've ever been in. And I don't mean fantastic as a quality but as a style. It's perfectly outworldly and irrational, yet makes overall very good sense. The stretches in plot and writing are all mostly properly justified and they all feel extremely good. With a cast that is probably on par if not better with the cast of P3 or P4, IS stands on the top of the series in terms of how grand the story gets, and although the cast is debatably better than other Personas', I generally liked them more, probably because they had actual adults(2 out of 6 characters are adults) and they are more focused, as you have a much smaller cast here.

    Yet while it stands at the top of the series in terms of story and cast, the entirety of the rest of the game is inferior, except for the music. The battle and boss themes speak for themselves on Youtube. And overall the music is very nice everywhere, it's a different style but it's as good as P4 IMO.

    The graphics look like **** but who is going to be surprised about that on a PS1 isometric game? To put it in perspective, it's roughly the same visual quality as Suikoden 2.

    The gameplay is however a complete break from later Personas:
    One: no social links. It's straightforward story where you go from dungeon to dungeon.
    Two: No fusions. You have to farm Tarot cards.
    Three: no slices of life. Again, it's a straightforward story.

    It honestly felt more like a classic SMT than a modern Persona. And while this is acceptable, what takes this down from a 10/10 old game to a mere 6 or 7 is its age and general 90ness.

    By 90sness I mean a lot of generally terrible ideas that were prevalent in the PS1 era and have fortunately died:
    -VERY long animations
    -Fights take far too long, turns take over 40s, some take over a minute
    -Tarot card farming is a guessing game and is utterly uninteresting
    -Menus lag, and the game has a generally very poor programming where it takes ~2 seconds for every menu screen, and the menus are HORRIBLY designed so you have to do 2 menus per character per turn, and you have 5 characters, and then you have to watch ~2s for every Persona animation + ~2s for every attack animation + 1s for EVERY ENEMY DAMAGED, one after the other. You do a mass attack and you get 1 second lost for every enemy damaged...just what the hell, for back then this was poor programming, for today it's just monstrously slow.

    These alone make the game a massive chore to play. I never want to do a single fight not because they're hard or annoying or luck-based(like in P3) but because they're sloooooooooow. The menus are slow. The animations are slow(and don't look good at all). The attacks are slow. Everything is slow. Because the PSP version of the game is also piss easy(never died on my first playthrough even though I played like arse and was on auto-attack all the time), I at least can breeze through, but it's still a pain to play.

    But beyond these, the design problems just show all over:
    -Dungeons are almost universally labyrinthic, too long or fetch quests. The fetch quests happen the most, and are the worst: you're literally put in the dungeon and are told to find ONE ITEM. And to do that, you have to scour every floor, every shelf, every container, for it, while randm encounters harass you with super slow fights. FU*K IT.
    -There is a lot of old game design problems like not being clearly told what is going on. The story often lacks foreshadowing or proper amount of text, it feels like chunks of text being given but there are parts missing to properly express everything.
    -There are far too many ellipses for about half the game.
    -Many story elements are just plainly not explained.
    The general feeling I got out of Persona2 IS is a sense of fun and quality ideas, but also vagueness. The age shows in storytelling, gameplay and general design, and although I assure it's worth trying, it's nowhere near a "true Persona" that would shame its sequels.
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  2. Mar 25, 2015
    9
    It's great. A bit different from 3 & 4 (I assume most people will be moving backwards from there). It draws on the earlier non-persona entries where you "talk" with the creatures if you so choose. It also doesn't have the day by day high school sim thing. The story and characters are fantastic. Everyone seems to say the gameplay is dated but I love it; classic turned based. I will say thatIt's great. A bit different from 3 & 4 (I assume most people will be moving backwards from there). It draws on the earlier non-persona entries where you "talk" with the creatures if you so choose. It also doesn't have the day by day high school sim thing. The story and characters are fantastic. Everyone seems to say the gameplay is dated but I love it; classic turned based. I will say that it's way too easy though. Even on the hardest difficulty setting. It has the same Shoji Meguro as the composer, and it gives the in-game option to change between the original score and more modern scores. Expand
  3. Nov 3, 2014
    7
    This was the very first persona game that I played. I actually like it despite the dated graphics and slow gameplay.

    The story is engaging and thrilling within is a cast of enjoyable characters. You also will get to listen to lovely soundtracks. What made me think of continuing this game though were a lot of factors: high battle rate, sluggish gameplay, date graphics and FMVs,
    This was the very first persona game that I played. I actually like it despite the dated graphics and slow gameplay.

    The story is engaging and thrilling within is a cast of enjoyable characters. You also will get to listen to lovely soundtracks.

    What made me think of continuing this game though were a lot of factors: high battle rate, sluggish gameplay, date graphics and FMVs, mediocre voice overs, and the lack of New Game+!

    This game would have truly paralled Persona 3 and 4 if the gameplay and graphics were remade 'cause the story is just plain awesome.
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  4. Apr 26, 2014
    9
    The best Persona game.

    You'll probably get sick of the frequent random encounters even if you don't have a thing against random encounters, but the goofy storyline (if only Hitler wasn't there to kill the mood) and great characters (best in the series) pull it through. You'll likely put the game down for a few days or so every few days or so because you'll be burned out on random
    The best Persona game.

    You'll probably get sick of the frequent random encounters even if you don't have a thing against random encounters, but the goofy storyline (if only Hitler wasn't there to kill the mood) and great characters (best in the series) pull it through. You'll likely put the game down for a few days or so every few days or so because you'll be burned out on random encounters, but as long as you don't power through it it's a great experience.
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  5. Nov 20, 2013
    10
    This game is fantastic, from the amazing story, to the colorful characters, to the obviously dated but still fun gameplay. This game stands as a gem in the PSP's library, and is a fantastic entry in the Persona series. The story completely pulled me in, there was just something gripping and amazing about this game. Another thing that I loved about this game is it's soundtrack. This gameThis game is fantastic, from the amazing story, to the colorful characters, to the obviously dated but still fun gameplay. This game stands as a gem in the PSP's library, and is a fantastic entry in the Persona series. The story completely pulled me in, there was just something gripping and amazing about this game. Another thing that I loved about this game is it's soundtrack. This game has an amazing....AMAZING soundtrack!

    Overall this game gets a 9.5/10, amazing story and soundtrack, though the gameplay does hold it back a little bit.
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  6. Apr 11, 2013
    10
    Simply put, the best persona game ever made, better then eternal punishment. better then persona 3 or 4, and better then the first one. Amazing music (There's a remade soundtrack but the original is better), AMAZING characters, this game probably has the best characters in any persona game, the persona 2 duology is the peek of the persona series, BUY THIS!
  7. Dec 29, 2012
    10
    Persona 2 - Innocent Sin has a fantastic story and characters. However, the gameplay is extremely dated and archaic. Because this is a remake, Atlus keeping the gameplay largely the same is justified and doesn't factor into my score.
  8. Dec 9, 2011
    8
    About I don't know say 11 or so years later Innocent Sin finally graces our shores in a form other than a fan translation. While it isn't as polished as Persona 3 & 4 it stands up well on it's own. It's a good thing that a game made in 90's has more of a soul than most triple A games today. The battle system has been made easier, fusion spells are easier to do and easier to to contactAbout I don't know say 11 or so years later Innocent Sin finally graces our shores in a form other than a fan translation. While it isn't as polished as Persona 3 & 4 it stands up well on it's own. It's a good thing that a game made in 90's has more of a soul than most triple A games today. The battle system has been made easier, fusion spells are easier to do and easier to to contact demons slightly. That being said the fusion system this game is not as useful as it would prove to be in later games. You can beat the entire game with the main persona you get at the beginning of the game and use nothing but and you'll be fine at least on easy mode. Also some of the translations seem off but I've seen the entity of the fan translation online so it's not a big deal. The new theater mode is neat too offering three interesting side quests, and yes while the quest make was not added to the North American version I don't that's a big deal though some are mad about it. Story wise this game is great though it gets bogged by the annoying high encounter rate. Though there is meter and on screen map that will flat out tell you when monster showdowns will occur and the high encounter rate often means you won't have to level grind for the most part, though the battles can interrupt the flow of the story and it's also easy to miss certain things. The voice acting has improved from the 90's compared to Eternal Punishment. Though in the Persona 2 saga the silent protagonist makes little sense since the main character IS NOT a blank slate. But that's a little annoyance Persona 2 is still a very solid game. Expand
  9. Nov 24, 2011
    8
    Atlus brings the never before released outside of Japan Persona 2 Innocent Sin to the whole world! Enjoy this cult classic game that has a storyline that involves spirits, demons, gods, goddesses, aliens and even the Nazis! Amazing Storyline, gorgeous music and a unique gameplay system, although some players might get shy away from this game due to its heightened difficulty and horrendousAtlus brings the never before released outside of Japan Persona 2 Innocent Sin to the whole world! Enjoy this cult classic game that has a storyline that involves spirits, demons, gods, goddesses, aliens and even the Nazis! Amazing Storyline, gorgeous music and a unique gameplay system, although some players might get shy away from this game due to its heightened difficulty and horrendous encounter rate. Regardless, if you are a hardcore RPG gamer or a huge fan of the Altus/Persona series, than this game is recommended to get right now! Expand
  10. Nov 19, 2011
    8
    Even after all these years this game has never lost its charm for me, I did played it on the PSOne and thoroughly enjoyed it back then. With the PSP released P2 has been given a face-lift and many minor improvements, the only problem that many people seems to be unhappy about are the long dungeons + high encounter rate but it's not exactly a bad thing the battle are fast-paced (in myEven after all these years this game has never lost its charm for me, I did played it on the PSOne and thoroughly enjoyed it back then. With the PSP released P2 has been given a face-lift and many minor improvements, the only problem that many people seems to be unhappy about are the long dungeons + high encounter rate but it's not exactly a bad thing the battle are fast-paced (in my opinion) and the dungeons are challenging although a bit trying at time. If you like Persona 1 for the PSP you may like this. Expand
  11. Nov 7, 2011
    9
    Persona 2 Innocent Sin was well remade, I'm a big Shin Megami Tensei fan and playing Persona 2 brought back some memories. Like other Persona games, it has a immersive and a absorbing story line which really gets you thinking "whats's going to happen net?". Persona 2 gets a little frustrating with the high battle rates and what not but its easily understanable considering you need to gainPersona 2 Innocent Sin was well remade, I'm a big Shin Megami Tensei fan and playing Persona 2 brought back some memories. Like other Persona games, it has a immersive and a absorbing story line which really gets you thinking "whats's going to happen net?". Persona 2 gets a little frustrating with the high battle rates and what not but its easily understanable considering you need to gain experience and new personas. With a classic rpg styled game play its a easy going old school touch to it. Atlus has remastered another one of its masterpieces with more twists and turns with a perplexing story line, I highly recommend this! Expand
  12. Nov 1, 2011
    10
    Its a great game.Its been criticised for its high battle rate,but its necessary because you have to battle for experience and negotiate to obtain new personas.I don't think its aged at all,the same way i don't think FFVIII(for example) its aged,a great game will always be a great game even if its for psone or for NES.
  13. Oct 3, 2011
    9
    Persona 2 Innocent Sin returns players to a remastered, reinvented version of the game never released outside of Japan. Sporting a bizarre, but well-written story about rumours becoming reality and a clash with a mysterious figure known as "Master Joker", the game is a nigh perfect example of a classic-era JRPG.

    That is...Until you get to the mechanics. Like it or hate it, Persona 2 is
    Persona 2 Innocent Sin returns players to a remastered, reinvented version of the game never released outside of Japan. Sporting a bizarre, but well-written story about rumours becoming reality and a clash with a mysterious figure known as "Master Joker", the game is a nigh perfect example of a classic-era JRPG.

    That is...Until you get to the mechanics. Like it or hate it, Persona 2 is full (and I mean FULL) of random encounters with a somewhat clunky battle system. The battles are much improved over their PSX counterpart, but still show their age - some of the mechanics being either simplistic or a bit turned-around to get to.

    That said, the encounter rate isn't too big of an issue as the battles are much quicker paced than in the original version and in the first Persona. You can now skip animations entirely to make the battles even faster than in SMT Persona, and believe me, you will come to appreciate it. Contacting demons is a lot smarter here - some of the questions demons ask you can actually throw you off, and the two and three person contacts can be fun. (Maya and Yukino = hilarity)

    I am finding that I am really loving this game, however my recommendation comes with a caveat...If you do not like "oldschool", or otherwise aged RPGs, you will want to stay away from this one. If you want something unique and, like me, don't mind the clunkiness of some of the game's systems, then Persona 2 Innocent Sin is a must-have. It's $40 I will never regret spending.
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  14. Sep 25, 2011
    9
    This is a very well made version of the original P2 from the PSX. It think is the best version and a great opportunity to experience the classic again. It´s true doesn`t have high-res graphics and can be a little frustating (lots of random battles), and also can confuse you, causing that you can get lost easily. But, appart from that, is a great game, with absorbing storyline,This is a very well made version of the original P2 from the PSX. It think is the best version and a great opportunity to experience the classic again. It´s true doesn`t have high-res graphics and can be a little frustating (lots of random battles), and also can confuse you, causing that you can get lost easily. But, appart from that, is a great game, with absorbing storyline, great character, with a lot of realism and humanity, good Ost, decent voice acting, and a fast-paced battle system. It fixes the weird grid battle system of the first Persona and makes it dynamic with the auto-battle. It has a lot of extras to obtain (theatre, fusion spells, secret tarot cards, secret bosses during the storyline...). It can be a little easy at early stages and it needs a high english level.

    The problem with the notes is that you can´t expect a game up-to date, this is like Tactics Ogre, very respectful to the original, but enhanded and very well adapted to the original. I highly recommend it to Shin Megami Tensei and Persona fan who couldn´t experience the lost episode of Persona 2, and to those people who want to play an old-school RPG. If you don´t like the high amount of random battle, the classic game system, the complexity of the storyline (they don´t tell you well where to go) and maybe a very classic scheme, this is not a game for you. Beside of all, is one of the greatest RPGs of the PSX, and now, one of the best of the PSP.
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Awards & Rankings

#6 Most Discussed PSP Game of 2011
#10 Most Shared PSP Game of 2011
Metascore
75

Generally favorable reviews - based on 25 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 25
  2. Negative: 0 out of 25
  1. Play UK
    Jan 25, 2012
    65
    A rather tame experience. [Feb 2012, p.82]
  2. Games Master UK
    Dec 17, 2011
    76
    Old school JRPG with a few unique twists, strictly for genre fans. [Jan 2012, p.94]
  3. Persona 2 isn't for everyone. The esoteric style and ageing looks will see off many a curious gamer, but persevere through the niggles and you'll uncover a stylish, incredibly written, charismatic experience.