Average User Score: 9.1Jul 16, 2013Persona is by far my favorite JRPG series, even topping that of the venerable Final Fantasy (which, for my tastes, is far too inconsistent inPersona is by far my favorite JRPG series, even topping that of the venerable Final Fantasy (which, for my tastes, is far too inconsistent in story and universes). I believe that P3 and P4 exist equally on the plane of greatness, and this PSP adaptation is somewhere one notch below.
First, the good things. You will find that the core gameplay has remained the same, and even improved, from the original P3, including FES. The battle mechanics, while still the same, allow you to control your party members, and the Shuffle Time, which is necessary to advance to certain levels of fusion, has new modes and rewards.
The part that made this game for me though, and the reason why it gets an 8 instead of a 6, is the all-new female player-character, with a different UI and social links, and a few story changes. It is so unbelievably well done that when I finished the game and went to New Game Plus, I didn't even really want to play as the male PC as in P3, but I did for the sake of completeness anyways. It was a good move, and I am sad to see that they scratched it when they remade P4.
Now, the bad things. The first and foremost thing you will find distracting is the overworld. Unlike P3 and P3: FES, there is no 3D overworld. That is used purely for battling. While I understand that there were space limitations on a UMD that prevent this 60-80 hour monster of a game, there should have been some way to compress the textures enough to make it 3D. The weird overworld models and lack of actually seeing your character outside of your portrait gets distracting rather quickly.
The second thing is that, like the lack of a 3D overworld, this game does not have FES. While I did like the story FES provided when I first played it, after playing through P3P again, I realized that I actually like this ending without FES better. It's a bit more poetic.
However, you WILL NOT understand the opening of P4 Arena if you do not play FES. I do believe there are a few copies of FES by itself, without P3 floating around, so if you can nab one and you still have a PS2, I highly recommend playing it if you plan on getting into Arena. I personally haven't played Arena, although I do want to really badly, but I have seen the intro, and you will be kind of confused if you haven't played FES.
Overall, this game is better than P3 in every way except for the lack of a 3D overworld and FES, which are major distractions and disappointments, and earn this game an 8 instead of a perfect ten. You won't be disappointed, but you will have trouble getting into it and understanding some things.… Expand
Average User Score: 5.2Jul 9, 2013This game is not worth a dime.
It would have been better placed as something that someone developed by themselves in their basement orThis game is not worth a dime.
It would have been better placed as something that someone developed by themselves in their basement or something, because that's what it feels like.
Let's go from good to bad here.
Good: decent car play, okay gun variations, somewhat cool race mechanics.
Bad: everything else. Stupid and unbalanced gunplay, weird and buggy graphics, weak to terrible voice acting, disgustingly stupid story, short play time, fetch side quests, no variations in enemies, and the sparsest overworld since the original Halo. (and that game came out 13 years ago... so that's pretty bad.)
Let's be real here. The real reason everyone hates this game is the absolutely stupid gunplay. The game would have been vastly better served in making all of the guns significantly stronger, and instead making the ammo so rare. (Where do the shops get the thousands of rounds of ammo you need to kill all your enemies?) Solid gunplay could have made this game satisfying enough...
But it wouldn't have saved the idiotic story. There is no way the devs couldn't know that this was one of the worst plots in a AAA shooter in a long time. You have no personal motivation to do any of the things other characters to do, and the ending was absolutely stupid.
Which is sad, because the ending level is pretty cool. You can tell that the game's engine better serves the futuristic areas versus the sparse, empty, and dead wasteland.
Finally, the enemies absolutely ruin this game. The mutants are the closest thing to a challenge and engaging gameplay, but the rest aren't worth the buckets of bullets you have to pump into them.
Overall, this game was a sorely disappointing waste of a few hours of my life that I can't get back, and the fact that the critical reviews aren't more scathing brings up certain... ethical... questions...… Expand
Average User Score: 7.8Jul 8, 2013I played this game without reading any reviews beforehand, which is incredibly rare for me. This sort of vacuum gave me a larger berth toI played this game without reading any reviews beforehand, which is incredibly rare for me. This sort of vacuum gave me a larger berth to overlook the glaring faults in this game and enjoy the absolutely stellar other parts.
First and foremost, the environments in this game are dull and boring, and you WILL get tired of them quickly.
Do not let that stop you from playing this amazing game.
At full spec, the game looks good enough to make the boring environments justifiable, and they do make sense in the space of the story.
And that's where this game shines- story. Compelling, addicting. You, from the first moments of the game, become desperate to figure out what has happened, and what is going on. It also has pretty amazing voice acting considering this is a foreign title.
The gameplay is a little rough, but that's the realism of the old-school fisticuffs and bolt-action rifle work. It's slow and clunky, but you're going to be slow and clunky in -30 degrees F weather using a 50-year-old Mosin Nagant rifle, so I liked that bit.
The flashback mechanic really makes the game shine. The trial-and-error element coupled with a break from the repetitive environs and horrifying enemies is a nice departure, and the game wouldn't work without it.
That brings me to another point- although there aren't many kinds of them, the enemies are TERRIFYING. Never in a game have I dreaded so much fighting "the enemy" as I have this game. They creep me out to my core.
Overall, the game has its rough points, but they're all justifiable. The artistic elements, terrifying enemies, solid voice work, compelling story, and temperature mechanics make this game shine like no other.… Expand
Average User Score: 8.5Jun 22, 2013This game is not the masterpiece some people would like it to be.
However, there is no reason to dismiss it. For the positive, it has threeThis game is not the masterpiece some people would like it to be.
However, there is no reason to dismiss it. For the positive, it has three amazing main characters with ambiguous backgrounds and emotions, humanistic flaws, and complicated relations (if you get to the ending, the "complicated" element is far beyond what words could express).
The gameplay is good. It's a bit repetitive, but that's standard shooter fair. The gunplay is nice and smooth, with a wide enough variation, but some of the guns feel useless, and others are a bit too strong. The progression is a little weak; sometimes you'll be wondering, "why am I going here? What am I really even doing?" but it's not often and that happens in most games anyways.
The story is amazing, and that is the reason why it deserves an 8 instead of a 5.
For the reasons it could deserve a five, there are many negatives. Firstly, there are a few plot holes and confusing elements, especially the placement and relation of this game to the other games in the series. Secondly, there are few characters outside the main trio, and that no-supporting-character bubble can get a little dull after a while. Thirdly, the graphics are nice, but not as good as they could be. The game requires a lot more of a computer than many games with equivalent graphics do, so you wonder how well the engine programming went.
Finally, there are a few gameplay weaknesses. The low variation in enemies and abilities is what kills the experience. The difficulty is also rather low until the end, where it gets unnecessarily difficult. But other than these somewhat major issues, it's still solid enough.
Basically, this is a rare shooter where the gameplay is really secondary to the story, and it excels for that reason.… Expand
Average User Score: 8.8Jun 22, 2013This is easily one of the greatest Wii games of all time IMHO, although that is a title that is not hard to aim for. Even having not playedThis is easily one of the greatest Wii games of all time IMHO, although that is a title that is not hard to aim for. Even having not played all of Path of Radiance, I found the difficulty to be engaging, the story to be compelling, most of the major characters to be rather fleshed out, and the RPG elements to be on par.
The FMV cuts are gorgeous, even if a bit sparse, and the lack of voice acting in the major dialogue scenes can get rather tiring, but this is a minor complaint.
The only reason why this doesn't deserve a ten is a few gameplay gripes. The graphics clearly could have been better, especially when you're on the map playing. The battle music has little variation and gets old quickly. The inability to repair forged weapons easily makes the game even more difficult beyond the actual strategy. Ranged units rarely are ranged enough (would it have been hard to make damage fall with distance and let the archers actually be archers!?), there are too many Condition: Rout battles, and the difficulties in distributing EXP and making certain units as useful as they should be just make the game hair-rippingly difficult in the second half of the third chapter and all of the fourth.
However, the relatively deep strategy for a console game, simple controls, wide variation in unit types, functions, and strengths, the great story, and the slightly-more-than-passing-thought RPG elements easily makes this one of the best games on this console.… Expand