Persona 3 Reload Review | Attack of the Fanboy

Picture: Atlus

Within the gaming trade, it is advisable ask your self if there can ever be an excessive amount of of factor. I not too long ago have had this sense that builders lately live up to now and may’t assume up an authentic concept — leaning on their previous successes to proceed to thrive.

I’m all for it if it’s achieved proper, completely executed with each the Remaining Fantasy 7 remake and the large hits of the Resident Evil sequence, however not a lot in The Final of Us Half 1. It’s a nice line these builders have to stroll, the place they’ll both fumble the thought of a remake totally or nail it on the pinnacle to make one thing nice much more superb. This is the reason I’m at all times skeptical after I hear of a remake within the works of a sport that’s so beloved by the gaming neighborhood. Enter Persona 3 Reload.

Persona 3 is the entry of the Persona franchise that put the sequence on the map. It’s the one which received individuals speaking about Persona on the whole and made it its recognizable title immediately. Why utterly remake one thing excellent for many of the followers of your sequence? Why not depart one thing nice alone? It’s the query talked about earlier: “Can there ever be too much of a good thing?” 

The reply isn’t any, in keeping with Atlus, contemplating Reload is the fourth model of the sport. And you understand what? I believe I agree with them as a result of Persona 3 Reload is just not solely an outstanding remake of top-of-the-line JRPGs on the market, but additionally a sport that’s totally its personal factor. It sticks to its roots whereas being a totally completely different expertise, making you generally neglect you’re enjoying a reimagining of a sport that got here out nearly 20 years in the past. Persona 3 Reload was made with love, care, and fervour for the sequence’ fanbase, and I can’t thank Atlus sufficient for making it occur. 

A Nostalgic but New Expertise

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After I say this remake is totally its personal factor, you shouldn’t assume it strays away from the unique sport as a result of it doesn’t. Persona 3 Reload improves on the unique whereas sticking to the supply materials by its story beats, social hyperlinks, and college administration system. It’s all about quality-of-life inclusions in Persona 3 Reload that result in a definitive model of a masterclass JRPG for contemporary occasions. Something you may keep in mind and love from Persona 3 again in 2007 has been improved, reworked, and rebuilt from the bottom as much as make a two-decades-old sport really feel like a next-generation entry. 

That is very true in its additions to the fight system. Fight nonetheless feels like the unique sport however consists of options and mechanics that make it extra enjoyable and addictive. For instance, “Theurgy” is a brand new addition impressed by Persona 5’s “Showtime” that grants everybody in your social gathering a particular assault that may flip the tides of a battle. Theurgy is a posh mechanic that revolves round a gauge that may solely be constructed up by performing particular actions throughout battle. Every social gathering member has a distinct requirement for the Theurgy build-up, placing strategic pondering on the forefront as a substitute of simply merely choosing an assault. 

For instance, if you wish to construct up Yukari’s Thuergy gauge, you could proceed to heal the social gathering, or the gauge will keep stagnant. However, the chief should proceed utilizing Persona abilities to succeed in “max” on Theurgy for the power to change into obtainable. I discovered myself planning every battle across the necessities of filling the Theurgy bar, which made every social gathering member’s flip extra significant.

Picture: Attack of the Fanboy

Fight is just not the one factor that received enhancements, as you’ll discover many throughout the sport’s Social Hyperlink system. All social hyperlink occasions are actually totally voiced, eradicating the trouble of studying each line of dialogue. This easy addition may be very welcomed and extra necessary than you’d assume, because it makes conversations extra participating and provides extra to the characters of Persona 3. It makes you discover how vastly completely different all of the characters within the sport are.

With totally voiced social hyperlinks, you be taught that every character has their very own persona, tone, and mannerisms that genuinely make you’re feeling such as you’re getting shut to those individuals all through the sport’s calendar yr. The playfulness of Maiko, the shyness of Chihiro, the aged couple’s forgetfulness, Kenji’s sarcastic conduct, and many others, are all dropped at life with voice performing, making their tales extra impactful and plausible.

A Lovely Rebuilt World

Picture: Atlus

It wouldn’t be a remake with out enhancements to the graphics and visuals, and Persona 3 Reload is nothing in need of extraordinary in that regard. The sport is just lovely. Tartarus is extra enhanced, emphasizing a darker tone, whereas the mall space and dorm are brighter, graphically wanting as much as par with the newer Persona 5. It nonetheless has that anime and manga really feel like the unique model, but it surely’s scaled up with extra textures and particulars, including its personal distinctive attraction that solely newer Persona video games can pull off. Atlus knew what it was doing right here.

Not solely is the world rebuilt to pop on display, however character fashions additionally received a rework. Their base design appears just like the unique, except new outfits, however they’re extra alive and detailed than ever. As an example, they present extra vary of their feelings now throughout social hyperlink occasions. Blushing, worry, shock, disappointment — all feelings are actually proven in Persona 3’s characters. Because the Persona sequence has at all times been concerning the human situation, detailing feelings additional is an excellent contact that makes the sport much more lovely than it was.

A Story That Stands The Take a look at of Time

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The enhancements of Persona 3 Reload assist give the story extra highlight and the reward it actually deserves. In case you aren’t accustomed to the unique, with out spoilers, Persona 3 is about excessive schoolers navigating on a regular basis life as they combat an unnerving darkness that seems at midnight. It seems like a simple premise, however what appears easy quickly turns into a narrative with a lot deeper which means than anybody would count on. It slowly morphs right into a story about how highly effective the human spirit might be, studying about dying and the way to deal with it, the significance of friendship, and overcoming fears of life on the whole. Any individual from all walks of life will discover one thing to narrate to within the highly effective message the sport exudes.

The story is identical within the remake as within the authentic, however the easy additions make it really feel extra actual. As beforehand talked about, totally voice-acted social occasions, enhanced graphics, and a bigger vary of persona for the characters are current in Persona 3 Reload. All of those additions make the sport’s deeper which means stand out far more than it did within the authentic.

And that’s the place Reload shines essentially the most — in its capability to inform the identical story as the unique however make it hit that a lot more durable. This sport will hit you want a truck when you let it as you discover your mortality and the struggles one normally has to search out which means in life. I like to recommend anybody who performs Persona 3 Reload to take a second and assume critically about its story beats, as you’ll discover loads to unwrap, and when you do, you’ll respect all the sport that rather more.

The Verdict

Persona 3 Reload is a remake achieved proper. Every thing you like concerning the authentic sport is improved upon, resulting in a brand new expertise that feels recent and model new whereas not forgetting its supply materials. Visible enhancements, inclusions of addicting fight mechanics, extra pleasant social hyperlinks — this sport has all of it. That is the definitive solution to play the beloved JRPG, and when you get your fingers on it, you gained’t ever need to return to the unique.  

There’s a sure attraction in Persona 3 Reload that I don’t assume many sequence have the potential to copy. You begin to really feel for these characters as you navigate the hardships of on a regular basis life. Tough upbringings, willpower to achieve college, searching for each other, and most significantly, the facility of the human spirit. That is what the Persona sequence has at all times been about and Persona 3 Reload is aware of this, clearly proven within the enhancements added to the just about 20-year-old sport. Atlus has showcased what a remake can and ought to be.

– This text was up to date on February ninth, 2024

About The Writer

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Christian has been a author of Attack of the Fanboy for over a yr and has coated Shadows of Rose, Lords of the Fallen, Remnant 2, Lies of P, and extra; his favourite style is Survival Horror. He has a enterprise diploma however felt the necessity to take his love for video video games to the gaming neighborhood. Outdoors of writing, yow will discover him listening to all kinds of podcasts, particularly At all times Sunny Podcast and Morbid True Crime.

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