|Persona 4 Arena|
|Publisher|| Atlus (JPN, US) |
Zen United (EU)
|Developer|| Arc System Works |
|Platform(s)|| PlayStation 3 |
|ESRB||T for Teen|
| July 26, 2012 |
March 1, 2012
|August 7, 2012|
|May 10, 2013|
Persona 4 Arena (Persona 4: The Ultimate in Mayonaka Arena in Japan) is a 2D fighting game by Arc System Works, developed under the supervision of Atlus' P Studio. It is a direct sequel to both Persona 3 and Persona 4, directed by Katsura Hashino and scored by Shoji Meguro. Fumihiko Tachiki and Patrick Seitz act as the voice of the announcer.
The story starts 2 months after the events of Persona 4 and roughly 2 years after Persona 3 FES' The Answer. At the start of Golden Week, Yu Narukami returns to Yasoinaba and reunites with Dojima, Nanako and his friends. But soon Chie hears a rumor that the Midnight Channel is airing again and tells Yosuke and Yukiko. The three of them and Yu (coincidentally) see it. At the same time, Rise, Kanji and Teddie go missing and Naoto is busy on a mission. The following day, they head into the TV world and find themselves stuck in a tournament held at their high school where they must fight each other to advance, but during the tournament they see a mysterious girl who claims to be their student council president as well as three Persona-users they've never seen before.
Mitsuru is now head of a secret spec ops squad known as Shadow Operatives working with the government consisting of herself and some of her old SEES colleagues. On a mission to escort top secret cargo, the airplane she's on is hijacked. Aigis manages to take down all the hijackers on her own but one of the cargo is stolen: the 5th generation anti-shadow humanoid weapon, Labrys. They track her down to Yasoinaba and enter the TV world, joined by Akihiko Sanada, having just arrived from South America, who shows up to help after Aigis picks up readings from inside. Naoto is hired by public safety to spy on the Kirijo Group and Shadow Operatives. She follows them into the TV.
As Elizabeth continues on her journey, she stops by at the gate of death to defeat Erebus, who comes back about once a year (she picks it up with one hand, throws it through a portal to the moon, then kills it in one hit with Thanatos). She heads over to the TV world when she feels all the Persona-users gathering there, hoping that she may find something in the strange phenomenon may be able help her to defeat Erebus for good so that she could save the boy who became the seal to protect humanity. Elizabeth encounters two of the boy's successors, one that she had befriended and given the Velvet Room's guidance under her supervision, and another who had also received the Velvet Room's guidance but this time under Margaret's supervision.
As the Persona-users get to the Announcement room where Rise is being locked up, they discover Labrys and soon learn about her as her shadow reveals her true self.
Labrys was created in 1999 at the Kirijo Ergonomics lab and most of her development was done through forcing her to fight other models of her series. She grew close to one of her "sisters", #024, but was forced to destroy her too. She eventually escaped the lab, dealing a lot of damage to it in the process, but was recaptured and sealed away. After vanishing from Mitsuru's plane, she was tossed into the TV world and her Shadow Self created the tournament to let other people feel what she felt.
The Persona-users defeat Shadow Labrys and Labrys accepts her and turns the shadow into the Persona Ariadne. As they prepare to leave, however, the true mastermind behind everything takes control of her and makes her attack everyone, but Fuuka manages to reach Yasoinaba in time and cut off his connection but he escapes. The mastermind is a human with no Persona who cannot enter the TV world, but is partnered with something not human that can shape shift and pretends to be various characters' shadows. Their objective is to weaken the Persona-users mentally so that their Personas will revert to Shadows; they need to gather strong Shadows for their "Project", and reverting the Persona-users' strong Personas would make exceptionally strong Shadows. Both of them escape and Mitsuru tells the Persona-users of Inaba to forget about everything and leave the rest of the case to them. Yu convinces everyone to "comply" with Mitsuru's order, but she and Aigis easily see through his act, and they regardlessly decide to let them do what they want, though both also plan to do everything they can to keep them out of harm's way. Before they leave, Labrys meets up with the Inaba group once more and tells them that she will leave and join with Mitsuru's group to catch the culprit so that she can protect her new friends, while she and Aigis vow to find their "mother".
After they leave, Yu and Yosuke tell everyone that they are reforming the Investigation Team. As everyone prepares for what comes next.
(Penultimate boss in most character's story mode is Shadow Labrys. The final boss of the Persona 4 cast is a brainwashed Labrys with Ariadne. The final bosses of the Persona 3 characters and Naoto is their own fake shadow. In Teddie's case, he has an extra fight against Kanji who thinks everything is a dream and shows up looking for a fight.)
In addition, Yu, Chie, Yukiko and Kanji are given choices in specific parts of their story where they are given prompts to respond to. For Yu, this is merely aestetic as a callback as the player character (though through specific choices, can lead to an extra scene with Margret), but for the others, their choices can either lead them to their true ending, or a non-canon joke ending where each of them are in a situation where the case is prematurely ended with the group in an awkward reaction.
- Main article: List of Persona 4 Arena Characters
As a sequel to Persona 4, the game sees a return of the original cast as well as several characters from Persona 3. Each of the main characters were also given titles.
- Yu Narukami: The Sister Complex Kingpin of Steel (鋼のシスコン番長 Hagane no Shisukon Banchō, "Sister Complex" directly points to the players who feel love for Yu's cousin, Nanako Dojima, which is also known as "Nanakon" [ナナコン] in Japanese fandom.)
- Yosuke Hanamura: Captain Ressentiment (キャプテン・ルサンチマン Kyaputen Rusanchiman, a reference to Yosuke's resentment towards a society which resents him for being the son of a man that destroyed business for the Central Shopping District.)
- Chie Satonaka: Spunky Dragon with Deadly Legs (男勝りの足技系ドラゴン Otoko-masari no Ashiwaza-kei Doragon, literally "the dragon with leg martial skills who surpasses all males".); Her title in the original promotional video is The Carnivore Who's Discarded Womanhood (女を捨てた肉食獣 Onna o Suteta Nikushoku-jū, a reference to her undying consumption of meats and being a fan of martial arts).
- Yukiko Amagi: The Unconquerable Snow Black (難攻不落の「黒」雪姫 Nankō Furaku no "Kuro"-yuki-hime, wordplay of " " due to Yukiko's name means "snow" and reference to Yukiko's Castle. "Black" also refers to her hair color and the stereotype of Japanese stock character of "haraguro/腹黒" who talks amicably but has some weird or cruel idea in mind.)
- Kanji Tatsumi: The Bloodcurdling Beefcake Emperor (戦慄のガチムチ皇帝 Senritsu no Gachimuchi Kōtei, a jab at his sexual insecurities. Gachimuchi is a Japanese slang term, referring to very masculine homosexual men.)
- Teddie: The Beast in Heat (色欲の猛獣（ビースト・オブ・リビドー） Bīsuto obu Ribidō, The kanji translate literally to "Predator of Sexual Desires", differently, the furikana is translated to "Beast of Libido".) It is a reference to his repeated attempts to hook up with the female members of the Investigation Team.
- Naoto Shirogane: The 2000 IQ Killjoy Detective (IQ2000のKY探偵 Ai Kyū Nisen no Kē Wai Tantei, " " is a Japanese slang abbreviated from the phrase "kūki ga yomenai" [空気が読めない, unable to read the atmosphere] which means someone is acting improperly in the wrong occasion. Yosuke uses this slang on Naoto during their school trip to Tatsumi Port Island in the club in the Japanese version.)
- Akihiko Sanada: The Two-Fisted Protein Junkie (剛拳のプロテインジャンキー Gōken no Purotein Jankī, referring to his boxing career and how he eats protein a lot.)
- Mitsuru Kirijo: The Imperious Queen of Executions (孤高の処刑女王 Kokō no Shokei Joō, a reference to Mitsuru's ice executions.)
- Aigis: The Heartless Armed Angel (全身凶器の心なき天使 Zenshin Kyōki no Kokoro-naki Tenshi, a reference to her being a humanoid android with heavy weaponry.)
- Labrys: Yasogami's Steel Council President (八高・鋼鉄の生徒会長 Hachikō Kōtetsu no Seito Kaichō, a reference to her being an android and the Student Council President.)
- Shadow Labrys: The Raging Bull of Destruction (皆殺しの猛牛総統 Minagoroshi no Mōgyū Sōtō, a reference to her familiar Asterius and her desire for destruction.)
- Elizabeth: The Lethal Elevator Attendant (最凶のエレベーターガール Saikyō no Erebētā Gāru, referring to of her previous role as the assistant to Igor in the Velvet Room, which in Persona 3 took the form of an elevator.)
Additional Character DatesEdit
- Japan (Arcade Version)
- Labrys: March 22, 2012
- Elizabeth: April 5, 2012
- Shadow Labrys: April 19, 2012
- Yukari Takeba: Location Test from August 16 to August 18, 2013
- Junpei Iori: Location Test from August 16 to August 18, 2013
GameplayEditPersona 4 Arena follows the style of modern anime fighters as there is a focus on fast, combo-centric combat with many movement options. The controls of combat consists of four buttons: A (Light Attack), B (Strong Attack), C (Persona Attack) and D (Persona Rush). There is an option to combo with simple commands from a neutral position Light Attack, making it easy for players not familiar with fighting games to chain attacks (via a "dial combo" function reminiscent of attacks in games like two of the fighting games of the Touhou Project series and the recent Under Night In-Birth, which P4U shares a few recent traits with). From this function are certain normal attacks that can only be done from there, though in the later parts of a combo, the later attacks can only be cancelled into other moves (other than the typical skills-to-SP skills cancel) only through the use of more complex mechanics explained later. Special moves are universally known as Skills in this game to pertain to the series' scheme.
One of the more unique features of Persona 4 Arena is the Persona system, where Personas are summoned during certain moves, and vary for each character. These Persona moves can be spammed with no penalty (though users must wait for the Persona to vanish before executing another Persona Move for certain attacks), but however Personas can be hit by attacks which will instantly make them vanish. If the Persona suffers enough damage, a Persona Break will occur barring the usage of the target's Persona for a set amount of time, thus Persona moves are just as notable as non-Persona attacks in where they must be used with caution and care.
Additionally, each character has their own Reversal Action (also known as the Furious Action). As the name implies, they are defensive commands that allow the character to overturn the tide of battle like having an anti-air move with invincibility frames or a reversal/counterattack. However this uses some of that player's life to use which turns into blue life which can be healed over time as long as they don't get hit. Persona 4 Arena also has its own variation of an All-Out Attack dubbed an All-Out Rush, a mini version involving only one character instead of two characters or a whole party. This is activated by inputting a universally unique overhead attack with autoguard/guard point properities and an additional input if the initial overhead connects. The All-Out Rush allows for the player to knock foes away or launch them into the air. Also imported from the Persona series in general are Status Ailments; they all last a certain amount of time, though their effects are instantly negated if the character lands a hit on the one who inflicted the ailment on them in the first place.
The SP Gauge at the bottom of the screen. Players can choose to expend a portion of SP to execute various, advantageous moves if they input the correct command and they have enough SP to pull it off. Such commands involve Skill Boosts (enchanced versions of special moves; an example of EX Moves) SP Skill Attacks (Supers; cancelling into them from a special costs a small amount of health), Guard Cancels (actions done from a guarding position), and 1 More! Cancels (ends current animation, returns it to a neutral state; an example of an "Anywhere Cancel"). Characters can perform difficult-to-land Mortal Blows/Instant Kills which instantly defeats the opponents and ends the match. They can only be performed on match point and takes up 100 SP (which are universally activated by pressing down three times and using both Persona buttons). When a character's life is 35% or less, they enter an Awakening State signified by a red SP Gauge and a cut-in in the background. In this state, the SP Gauge is extended to 150 and gains an extra 50 immediately, the character suffers less damage, and enables a new Super or two exclusive to that state.
Below the Life Gauge is a Burst Gauge. When full, the player can Burst which blows back the opponent if they are in close proximity. When it is used when your opponent is hit and you are in neutral position, your SP Gauge maxes out and your Burst Gauge takes less time to refill. If it is used when the player is attacking, it causes a 1 More! Burst, a launcher that upscales damage following it. If it is used while the player is in hit stun, bursting has no benefits other than peeling the enemy off the player. All Bursts count as Persona moves, thus if the player cannot use their Persona, via Persona Break or Silence, they cannot burst.
The console release of Persona 4 Arena is split between several different game modes. Lesson Mode teaches the player basic and advanced system mechanics within the game. Story Mode follows the story of Persona 4 Arena in each of the character's perspectives. Arcade Mode is the arcade release of the game and serves as an abridged version of the game's Story Mode. Score Attack Mode is a much harder Arcade Mode where the player goes through every character in the game on a special difficulty setting that is higher than Hell difficulty. The characters are fought in the following order, regardless of player character: Yosuke, Naoto, Yukiko, Teddie, Kanji, Chie, Mitsuru, Akihiko, Aigis, Yu, Shadow Labrys, Labrys and Elizabeth. Each character also has a specific set of changes that make them more boss-like to increase the difficulty even further. After every four characters defeated, the next four will have a more aggressive AI than the previous, which also increases the difficulty over time.
Sukukaja: Permanently active
Fate Counter: Now lowered by all attacks
AI Aggression: High
Fire Break: Permanently active
Fire Amp: Permanently at Level 8
Fan moves are thrown three at once.
AI Aggression: High
Circus Bear: Teddie now runs across the screen 3 times instead of 1, damage and speed roughly doubled
AI Aggression: High
Grab attacks now do roughly triple damage
Gains a new special move, a very fast dropkick with super armor
AI Aggression: Very High
Power Charge: Permanently at Level 3
AI Aggression: Very High
All attacks now cause either Freeze or Charm status
AI Aggression: Very High
Cyclone Gauge: Permanently at Level 3
Electric Fists: Permanently active
AI Aggression: Very High
Orgia Mode: Permanently active and unlimited meter
Megido Fire EX: The flames hit thrice as much before throwing the target back into the ground
Ammo count increased to 999
AI uses Heritage Liberator Palladion (Low Probability)
AI Aggression: Extremely High
All attacks can now be canceled into each other
Electric attacks have a higher probability of inflicting Stun
AI uses Myriad Truths (Low Probability)
AI Aggression: Extremely High
Doubled overall damage output
AI uses Labyrinthos Gate (Medium Probability)
AI Aggression: Extremely High
Axe Gauge: Permanently at maximum level (red-colored axe)
AI uses Weaver's Art: Inquisition (Medium Probability)
AI Aggression: Extremely High
HP: Increased from 7500 to 22500
Invigorate: SP gain rate increased by roughly quadruple
Diarahan: HP now fully regenerates
Mahamaon & Mamudoon: Now activate instantly, no longer requiring a timer
Ghastly Wail: Damage increased to 7500 normally, and 44444 if the opponent has Fear status inflicted on them (instant death)
AI uses Megidolaon, but now activates with just 1 hit instead of 3 (High Probability)
AI Aggression: Ultimate
The original arcade version eventually has received patches that included characters from time to time, but eventually for both the arcade and console versions, a 1.02 patch came with slight balance tweaks to the system mechanics, small bugs, and all characters, and is identified with a small icon on the lower right of the screen. Thus, on console it's technically impossible to play 1.00 and 1.01.
North American Xbox 360 boxart
Anime cutscene, story mode
Mitsuru and Aigis
Teddie speaking to Akihiko
|Artwork and Sprites|
Costume based on various Persona characters
Extra DLC palettes
Artwork of Yu and Aigis
- P4A is the first title to not feature the Shin Megami Tensei label in its overseas title, since Shin Megami Tensei III: Nocturne was localized in North America and Europe.
- P4A's story takes place in spring 2012 - the same year the game's Arcade version was released.
- Despite dropping "The Ultimate in Mayonaka" from the game's title outside of Japan, the original name appears in the intro movie in all regions. Similarly, the default announcer will always refer to Teddie by his Japanese name of Kuma, even when the language is set to English.
- A direct translation of the Japanese name of the game would be Persona 4: The Ultimate in Midnight Arena.
- Despite taking place after Persona 4, Yu, Yosuke, Chie, Yukiko, Kanji, Teddie, and Naoto are shown with their initial persona, instead of their ultimate ones unlike Mitsuru and Akihiko, as well as Aigis being shown still using Pallas Athena. This, however, can easily be explained as obtaining their ultimate Persona is optional in Persona 4. Also since Aigis and Yu are both users of the Wild Card, they may have just recreated Izanagi and Pallas Athena through fusion. However, this still does not explain why Teddie still does not have his canon Persona, when it transfigured into its ultimate form, Kamui, by unlocking the good ending of Persona 4. It is possible the Investigation Team don't have their ultimate Personas because Persona 4 Golden has them acquire new third tier Personas, likely to accommodate people who haven't played P4G & wouldn't have gained the new Personas. Aigis may also have Athena instead of Orpheus for similar reasons, to accommodate players who haven't played The Answer.
- Yu, however, uses Izanagi-no-Okami during his Instant Kill, and Aigis uses Palladion (albeit heavily modified) during hers.
- Interestingly enough, each character has voice clips in their sound test of them calling the names of their initial/ultimate Personas. It was probably intended for each character to choose between their Personas but, probably due to time constraints, this was cut.
- Arc System Works originally wanted Ryotaro Dojima as one of the playable characters during the pre-planning stages when they were deciding on the cast. Takumi Iguchiya joked that instead of a Persona, he would summon Nanako Dojima to his aid. Nanako herself was proposed as a playable character but strongly rejected by Atlus.
- ↑ http://www.siliconera.com/2012/03/23/what-if-ryotaro-dojima-in-persona-4-the-arena/
- ↑ http://www.siliconera.com/2013/07/04/blazblue-chronophantasma-brings-us-80-through-the-blazblue-story-and-other-tidbits/
- First Trailer featuring Yu, Yosuke, Chie and Aigis
- Second Trailer featuring Kanji and Yukiko
- Opening Movie
- Video featuring character special moves (and Izanagi-no-Okami and Palladion)
- Story mode teaser 1
- Yu Story mode teaser
- Yosuke Story mode teaser
- Chie Story mode teaser
- Yukiko Story mode teaser
- Kanji Story mode teaser
- Teddie Story Mode teaser
- Naoto Story Mode teaser
- Aigis Story Mode teaser
- Mitsuru Story Mode teaser
- Akihiko Story Mode teaser
- Labrys Story Mode teaser
- Elizabeth Story Mode teaser