- "What's the matter...? Are you simply going to watch? Are you forsaking him to save yourself? Death awaits him if you do nothing. Was your previous decision a mistake then? Very well...I have heeded your resolve. Vow to me. I am thou, thou art I...Thou who art willing to perform all sacrilegious acts for thine own justice! Call upon my name, and release thy rage! Show the strength of thy will to ascertain all on thine own, though thou be chained to Hell itself!"
- —Arsene, Persona 5
Arsene (アルセーヌ, Arusēnu)? is a Persona in Persona 5.
- "A being based off the main character of Maurice Leblanc's Novels, Arsene Lupin. He appears everywhere and is a master of disguise. He is known to help law-abiding citizens."
- —Persona 5 compendium is a fictional gentleman thief created by . He was known for targeting criminals or those who were much worse than himself, making him an anti-hero of sorts within his own stories. He might have been partly inspired by the French anarchist .
Character designer Shigenori Soejima explained that Arsene was designed with an "old school vibe" in mind. Arsene's wings are meant to evoke the image of a thief's cape in the viewer's mind and represent the idea that a thief can go wherever he wants.
The protagonist obtains Arsene, his initial Persona, during his first confrontation with Shadow Kamoshida in his Palace, where Arsene personally teaches the protagonist how to fight during his first battle. He talks to the protagonist once again once he reaches the same point as the story's beginning at Niijima's Palace , facing off against Moloch once again. The Shujin Academy library has a book based on him called "The Great Thief" that boosts knowledge, while one of Sadayo Kawakami's quiz questions is on the book about his exploits.
In the manga adaptaion of the game, Arsene makes a brief cameo appearance as a fiery shadow in the first chapter. Here he appears before the protagonist after he initally uninstalls the Metaverse Navigator App on his way to Cafe LeBlanc for the first time.
- In the game's prologue, Arsene's form is darkened, much like Izanagi's form is obscured in the fog when summoned during the protagonist's dream after he arrives in Inaba from Persona 4.
- Arsene's two moves in the prologue, Eigaon and Brave Blade are impossible for him learn normally and must be inherited via fusion or taught using skill cards. He would also be far too low in level to face the Moloch in the prologue without multiple repeat strengthening sessions.
- Uniquely, Arsene is the only Persona to speak to the protagonist, should he be used in fusion, though this only occurs for the first time.
- Arsene is an anti-hero that conspires against people more evil than him; this trait is also represented by the protagonist as he uses his status as a thief to steal the hearts of the corrupt.
- One of the original ideas for Persona 5 was to give the protagonist an entirely diffrent Persona instead of Arsene. The original idea was have a Persona based on the German demon Mephistopheles. However, the programers were against this idea because the idea of a demon-based Persona didn't fit into the thief theme of the game.