Colors Flying High - Let's Play Persona 5 Royal

Hi! I uh… started recording for the next update and got most of the way through a big cutscene before I remembered something. Remember how I said earlier that I had already named the main character Akira Kurusu (but he will always be John Persona in our hearts)? Well, there’s something else I need a name for:

It’s 12 characters, and I don’t think you see it anywhere except the online mode and the status screen.

John Persona fits with spaces.

I’ll mention in this the update, but the default name is “The Phantoms” and is kind of a reference to Soul Hackers, which featured a hacker group by the name of “The Spookies” who had a ghost as an emblem.

I’ll need a few days to work on the update up to the naming point since it’s one gigantic cutscene, so you’ll have until… let’s say Sunday to come up with one.

On that note, the first P5D stream will be next Saturday, 09/25. I will be accepting co-commentators.

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I think John Persona should be it. We may be called Akira Kurusu, but in our heart and soul we are all John Persona.

My mask is John Persona. Jung would probably have a field day but thanks to my mask I can barely spell Jung let alone know what any of this is about.

We are known as the RyhtymRogues- Wait this isn’t Dancing Star Night. I guess John Persona it is.

Click Here for Update 12

9_2iVBrO_400x400: It’s 05/03, and unfortunately the rest of Joker’s school vacation is on autopilot. We can’t do anything during the day.

Sojiro: “Hey, you can hear me, right? You don’t have plans, do you? Come help me out, instead of sleeping your life away.”

Morgana: “We do owe it to him… we’ll just have to wait. Hurry down and help him out.”

Sojiro: “Hm? Isn’t this…?”

Sojiro: “I knew it. This is your school, isn’t it?”

Sojiro: “sigh Things might be getting turbulent at school, but you need to just keep your head down, all right?”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: I feel like for the first half of the game, there just needs to be a button where any time Sojiro comes on screen you can press it and it’ll just flash “OK BOOMER” and skip it.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: We spend the evening watching the first half of Wraith, which gets us 3 points to kindness.

Sojiro: “Just do it. Don’t get cocky with me.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Oh look, Sae’s here, no doubt about some irrelevant bullshit. She’s going to order curry and then ask Sojiro how he learned to make it because no one could possibly make curry by themselves.

Sojiro: “Not at all.”

Sojiro: “Oh, is that the thing everyone’s been talking about?”

Sae: “Doesn’t it make you curious? People who were living normal lives suddenly went mad or deranged out of the blue…”

Sae: “Not to mention it’s happening one after another… could they really be coincidental?”

Sojiro: “Hmm… leaving that aside, what’ll you have?”

Sae: “…I’ll have the house blend please.”

Sojiro: “Uhh, no, not exactly.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Ahh, nope. It’s just me, Gabe Newell. And then Sae interrogates him because there has to be a conspiracy about why Episode 3 never came out - it couldn’t just be because Valve has become a progressively shittier company since the early 2000s.

Sae: “Are you a high school student? Where do you attend?”

Sae: “Oh? Someone I know goes there as well. I’ve heard that things are rough right now.”

Sae: “A teacher named Kamoshida confessed his crimes like he was a completely different person, supposedly.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Her next line should be “It’s like we’re in a poorly-written videogame.”

Sae: “And it happened all of a sudden one day… can a person’s mental state change so easily?”

Sojiro: “…Huh.”

Sae: “Is my drink ready yet?”

Sojiro: “Coming right up.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Naturally, we go to Untouchable to sell the medal.

Iwai: “Huh? A gold medal? Why do you have this? We don’t buy any fake or stolen goods here, kid.”

Iwai: “…Hold on a sec. Lemme see it.”

Iwai: “I’m just… not gonna ask where you got this. How’s 30,000 yen sound for it though?”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Iwai reminds me a lot of The Dark Id.

Iwai: “Hmph. The both of us know you ain’t findin’ another buyer for that thing. Just take the 30k.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: By the way, selling precious metals very rarely works this way in real life. Most places will not give you spot price for metals - they’ll only buy slightly below that so they always make a profit. It’s one of the reasons investing in physical metals is a bad idea.

Iwai: “It’s almost time…”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Oh, this bag. This fucking bag. As you’ve probably guessed by the pattern of “all characters with portraits are confidants or major bosses”, Iwai here is a confidant.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: In the base game, you had to open the bag to start Iwai’s confidant. Doing so required a minimum of 4 guts. In the 100% guide I used for the base game, the earliest you could do this was near the end of August, and you wound up finishing it with less than a month to go before the last day because that’s how unimportant he was.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: A lot of people never even made it that far - one of the top questions on Gamefaqs is “How do I open the bag?”. The reason they give it to you this early was originally for people playing New Game + who had maxed social stats.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Make no mistake though, we still need 4 guts to start his confidant. The good news is, we’ll be doing this significantly earlier - we’ll have that by the end of July.

Iwai: “Glad you’re so quick to understand.”

Iwai: “…They’re here.”

Iwai: “I dunno, lookin’ for evidence? You tell me, Mr. Detective.”

Iwai: “Well, you guys gonna search me? Go on, do what you gotta do.”

Iwai: “An upstandin’ citizen’s supposed to cooperate with the cops, right?”

Iwai: “Can you two hurry it up? I got a business to run here.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: I know what’s in the bag, but I imagine the cops opening it and inside are two Desert Eagles. The first one is named Nagisa, the second one Honoka, and they’re pink, white, covered in Pretty Cure and have little rings on the underside of the grip to hang charms on. The iron sights have been replaced with tiny anime figures. The cops open the bag and it causes the Third Impact.

Iwai: “…The kid’s just a regular ol’ customer. You can check the tapes if that’ll convince you. They’ll show you everything that’s gone down here today.”

Iwai: “That’s right, Mr. Detective. Maybe next time try not harassin’ my customers, see how that goes.”

Morgana: “More importantly… aren’t you curious about what’s in the bag?”

Morgana: “Well? Come on, let’s open it up.”

Morgana: “It’s incredible though! Miles ahead of the one Ryuji had. There’s something weird about that place…”

Morgana: “Hey Akira, I just had a great idea… we should totally buy this gun from him later!”

Morgana: “I mean, it’s perfect. Something this real-looking would work wonders in the Metaverse…”

Morgana: “Anyway, he told you to bring it back the next time you came, right? You should try striking a deal with him when we go to return it!”

Ann: “I saw the news coverage. You know, about Kamoshida. It’s getting a lot of coverage…”

Ann: “I don’t know… the reaction’s been bigger than what I was expecting… I guess I’m just… surprised.”

Ann: “I don’t think we did anything wrong though. I wonder if we helped those people speak up about it…”

Ann: “That’s pretty amazing, huh? I didn’t think we’d actually be able to do it! And yet look at us now! This calls for a celebration.”

Ann: “Let’s meet in front of Shibuya Station at noon tomorrow. Don’t be late! Oh, and did you pawn off that medal? You didn’t forget, right?”

Ann: “Good to hear! I already made reservations! You should be really excited about the place I chose, by the way. I’m sure everyone’s gonna love it!”

Morgana: “Ah, a restaurant of Lady Ann’s choosing. Finally, a decent meal! Hey, what do you think we’re gonna be eating?”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: I’ve made my position on sushi clear in the Innocent Sin LP (it sucks).

9_2iVBrO_400x400: We spend the night crafting. I only make one lockpick because there will be at least two more crafting sessions before the next dungeon. Because we have proficiency at 2, we can now make 3 items per session.

Ann: “Oh yeah, I heard that the police are coming to interview some people at school.”

Morgana: “That’s troublesome.”

Ryuji: "Our names are gonna come up for sure. People’re spreadin’ all sorts of rumors about us and Kamoshida… but we got ‘em pumped up! I keep hearin’ stuff like ‘The Phantom Thieves really stole his heart!’ "

Ryuji: “I think most people don’t believe it, but some of 'em actually seem grateful. Look at this.”

Ryuji: “Pretty cool, huh?”

Ann: “I was just desperate to deal with my own problems, but seeing people saying all this feels… strange.”

Ryuji: “Yeah… hey, what do we do now?”

Ryuji: “Well of course I’m gonna eat, but…”

Ann: gasp “This place has a time limit!”

Ryuji: “Oh crap, we only got an hour to eat!”

Ann: “Just fifty minutes left!”

Ryuji: “I’m not gonna finish all the beef dishes at this pace!”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: What are you, Chie?

Ann: “I need to eat my way through the entire desserts menu!”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: What are you, Stocking?

Ryuji: “Look after our stuff! We’ll snag somethin’ for you guys too, don’t worry!”

Morgana: “Seriously? Only meat?”

Ann: “Now, where should I start?”

Ryuji: “Hey. Calories.”

Ann: “Shuddup! How much do you think oneo f these costs!? I’ll never get the chance to do this again! Mmm, the Wilton Hotel cake buffet… I’d heard rumors, but I never thought it’d be so amazing!”

Morgana: “And… where’s our share?”

Ryuji: “I didn’t really know what you’d want… so I just grabbed you some beans.”

Morgana: “B-Beans!?”

Ann: “There were some pretty bizarre things there too, so we got you a variety of those. Fried bananas, preserved eggs, and… some kind of beans.”

Morgana: “M-More beans?”

Ann: “We put so much on the plate that it got all mixed up, but it should probably still taste good.”

Morgana: “This is just plain grotesque. Let’s go, Akira. These two just don’t know what fine dining means! We’ll show them!”

Morgana: “You guys watch our things while we’re gone! Wait patiently for our return!”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Bet the yaoi artists loved that one.

Ann: “Ooh, this part’s cream cheese!”

Morgana: “They’re not even listening.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: This is how you’re supposed to know that the cast are teenagers because only teenagers would pay $80 for a hotel buffet. I don’t know if things are different in Japan, but they act like this is some super upscale dining experience when in America (and as far as I know, everywhere else in the world) buffets are the lowest form of food.

Morgana: “They have a lot here… but fish should come first! Let’s fill our plate with all sorts of fish. Which table do you think they’re at?”

Morgana: “I’d prefer it raw, but grilled is great too!”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: So, what I’d like you to do is pay attention to what the “shitty adults” are saying, because Morgana is going to give us a summary that doesn’t make a whole lot of sense at the end of this.

Morgana: “Hold on a sec…”

Morgana: “Huh. It sounds like the Kamoshida incident is the talk of the town.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: It strikes me as really weird that people here are talking about Kamoshida by name. Kamoshida was basically a local scandal in Aoyama, and we’re in Shibuya right now. I’m not surprised they know about him, but it seems weird they’d have remembered his name.

Morgana: “Shoot! They noticed you! Just grab some food and act natural! On the plus side, we’ll get to eat the food later.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Let me ask you something. When was the last time you saw a rich person eat at a buffet?

Morgana: “What’s so bad about kids coming to enjoy a buffet? Hm, I wonder how the other people here are reacting to the news. Let’s get some more food and listen in.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: We then go through several eavesdropping cutscenes like it’s Dagger of Amon Ra.

Morgana: “Look into? I guess they’re investigating Kamoshida? They don’t sound very enthusiastic about it though.”

Morgana: "Gah! Grab some food! Ah, get the part that’s not too fatty!’

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Eggplant parm. Chicken parm. The legendary Pizza Burger. What I’m saying is that Morgana is wrong.

Morgana: “…Sorry, I got a bit carried away there.”

Morgana: “How can he be so insensitive? A student almost killed herself because of that Kamoshida…”

Morgana: “Quick! Grab some food! And don’t forget the crispy bits!”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: So now we’ve been through three different conversations where the adults have done nothing but talk about Kamoshida.

Morgana: “A sudden change of heart, huh? I suppose I can’t blame him for seeing it that way.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: This is the last one of these we have to do. It’s as boring and repetitive here as it is in game.

Morgana: “Ah. I got distracted.”

Morgana: “So they don’t believe themselves, but they’re making up stories to make the Phantom Thieves seem real… and they’re doing this in front of the actual Phantom Thieves.”

Morgana: “Whoa! Act fast, and get some food! And make sure it’s got a lot of whipped cream!”

Morgana: “Well, that was rude. Did you hear him? He said you were weird.”

Morgana: “But it’s shocking. So many of the adults here don’t seem like nice people. Now, according to what we heard…”

Morgana: “It seems most adults aren’t very interested in the news about Kamoshida.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: I’d like to point out that out of the last 12 adults we’ve seen (roughly 10 here, plus Sae and Sojiro) 12 have talked about nothing but Kamoshida.

Morgana: “Well, now that we’ve got a nice variety of food on our plates, let’s head back to the others.”

Ryuji: “Whaddya think about comin’ up against such ritzy food?”

Ryuji: “I was thinkin’ that too, but take a bite. Usin’ better ingredients makes stuff taste way different!”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Wait, what? How does that last line track with what I just answered?

Morgana: “Look at you, acting like you have a refined palate all of a sudden.”

Ryuji: “Don’t you think you’re eatin’ too much, Mona?”

Morgana: “There’s no… knowing when we’ll get to come back here again.”

Ann: “Sure, but you guys brought back loads of food. It’d be a shame to let it all go to waste. Why don’t you help them out, Ryuji?”

Ryuji: “We should both help.”

Ann: "Oh, me? I’m waaay too stuffed! I couldn’t possibly help!’

Ryuji: “Yeah, stuffin’ your face with cake. Whatever. Let’s deal with this ourselves!”

Morgana: “W-We did it…”

Ryuji: “Ye-Oh yeah… this is a victory… for all of us…”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: John Persona looks Ryuji straight in the eyes and goes “It looks like food to you?”

Ryuji: “Not exactly…”

Ann: “Good job, you guys. How about one last dish to cleanse your palates? I recommend the seasonal tart! The grapefruit has both alluring sweetness and a tangy sourness!”

Ryuji: “Stop… I don’t wanna hear about sour stuff.”

Ryuji: “This isn’t good… I gotta go to the bathroom…”

Morgana: “M-me too… please… carry me gently…”

Ryuji: “What was that? …Urp! We don’t got time for that. C’mon, let’s go…”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: This is me every year at the family Christmas party.

Ryuji: “I totally panicked when I saw the ‘Closed for Cleaning’ sign at the bathrooms…”

Morgana: “You were talking big about eating until you puked, but you really did puke… are you some kind of moron?”

Ryuji: “Hey, same goes for you! What floor was that restaurant on?”

Morgana: “We came up to get here, so it has to be on a lower floor, right?”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Oh look, it’s the guy from Joker’s flashback who kinda looks like Hideki Kamiya. He just shoves Ryuji out of the way and takes the elevator for himself.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Nah, there’s no update to Wonderful 101 PC edition that makes it not control like crap.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Now, you might think this is foreshadowing to the next dungeon. It’s not.

Ryuji: “Hey, you’re cuttin’ in line!”

Ryuji: “Oh, I’m sorry. So you can butt in front of other people if you’re in a hurry?”

Ryuji: “What?”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: So yeah, the game just kind of expects you’ve totally forgotten that this guy exists. Now, you might think “Clearly, the rest of the game must be a revenge plot on this guy”… except it isn’t at all.

Morgana: “Shouldn’t we head back down?”

Ryuji: “Yeah, but… that dick really pissed me off. He wasn’t even hidin’ the fact that he looks down on everyone!”

Morgana: “Don’t lose your temper over this.”

Ryuji: “I just can’t forgive shitty adults like that!”

Ryuji: “…What’s wrong?”

Ryuji: “You sure? You’re not lookin’ so hot.”

Morgana: “It’s probably because he never eats well. I’m always stuck with canned cat food too.”

Ryuji: “Ugh, that “sir” bullshit makes me sick! …Dammit!”

Ryuji: “Why’re you all pissy?”

Ann: “Sorry… I had a run-in with some woman a second ago. She bumped into me, but then said it was my fault when she dropped her plate.”

Ryuji: “Sounds like a real bitch.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: One thing this game does that I kind of can’t stand is that it abuses the hell out of ellipses. The start of the game didn’t do this. It’s something that’s coming up now, and it makes no sense. Persona 1 and Innocent Sin did this a lot when a character’s dialog was being split up into multiple text boxes, but both Ann and Ryuji do it in those last two lines (I removed it in the transcription) even though they’re not being split between boxes.

Ann: “Yeah, thanks though. But… the restaurant workers all looked at me with this disapproving expression. I wonder if we’re out of place here…”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: I mean, it’s a buffet. A very overpriced buffet, but still a buffet.

Ryuji: “…Hey, Morgana.”

Morgana: “What is it?”

Ryuji: “Anyone could have a Palace, yeah?”

Morgana: “Anyone with a strong, distorted desire.”

Ryuji: “Same for them havin’ a change of heart if their Treasure gets stolen?”

Morgana: “That would be the case.”

Ann: “Why are you bringing this up all of a sudden?”

Ryuji: “We had trouble earlier too. These selfish shitheads who just looked down on everyone else… I was just wonderin’ if we’d be able to change those kindsa people too.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: In case you can’t tell, this game takes pretty heavy inspiration from Death Note.

Ann: “You mean… you wanna continue as the Phantom Thieves?”

Ryuji: “I’ve been thinkin’. We put a lot of work into changin’ Kamoshida’s heart, but nobody believes in the Phantom Thieves.”

Ryuji: “Plus… those guys who had no other choice but to deal with it are thankin’ us. Us, of all people.”

Morgana: “Well… that’s true. You’re under my tutelage. There’s nothing we can’t accomplish as phantom thieves!”

Ryuji: “Shouldn’t we be able to help 'em out?”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Here’s the thing about this scene, and why I don’t like it. What Atlus is trying to do here (and also what they were trying to do in the cutscenes when the party was arguing about whether they should steal Kamoshida’s heart) is evoke the 2012 film Chronicle, which was a pretty big hit when it came out. The thing is, both this scene and that one are more or less carbon copies of a single scene in that movie.

Ann: “But… that means we’ll have to fight Shadows again, doesn’t it?”

Morgana: “Indeed. That can’t be avoided.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: If you haven’t seen it, Chronicle is a film about a group of three high school kids (all boys) who get superpowers after touching an alien techno-sphere thing. They immediately make a pact that none of them will use their powers for evil and then one of them inevitably goes to the dark side and kills his abusive stepdad.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: That movie’s biggest impact was bringing the term “apex predator” into vogue. That’s how the dark side kid justifies killing his stepdad: he’s an apex predator now despite the fact that he has no real protection against being shot.

Ryuji: “Eh, I’m sure we’ll manage. Hehehe… right?”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Here’s my problem with this scene, though. Chronicle was heavily inspired by things like Watchmen and Spider-Man, about what happens when suddenly you’ve got powers that make it so that the ordinary rules of society no longer apply to you and how you’re supposed to handle that while still trying to maintain your humanity. Persona 5 thinks about this for all of about ten seconds before tossing it out a window.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: My other problem with this is that there’s no real stakes behind it. The earlier games all worked because you were ultimately fighting something that was either going to destroy reality (Maki), was an existential threat to humanity (Nyx, Nyarlathotep) or had the immediate potential to become an existential threat (Izanami).

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Oh, right. I also wanted to mention that yes, I recognize that Inception was also probably an inspiration for this game. This is just kind of Atlus doing what they’d done for the past twenty-five years or so. The original Megami Tensei games were direct ripoffs of a book called Digital Devil Story: Megami Tensei, and SMT If was heavily inspired by a British film that was simply called “If” to the point where they copied the font for the cover art straight off the movie posters.

Ryuji: “We’re gonna catch all these shitty adults by surprise, and make ourselves known to the world!”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: The other thing I think doesn’t work about this is that like, there’s no point in this game where any of our party members will even do anything vaguely questionable. I’m not saying I want like, WoW-grade corruption porn (because that’s exactly what Warcraft has always been) but have a point where the party maybe goes a little too far. It kind of sets that up here… but never really follows through.

Ann: “…Are you okay being our leader?”

Ryuji: “No objections here! I can’t handle all that responsibility stuff.”

Morgana: “Where’s my say in this? But Lady Ann made the recommendation, so I’ll allow it.”

Ann: “Ooh, I’ve got it! I want it to be something both cute and luxurious sounding… let me see… how about “The Diamonds”?”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: This is Lupin III poking through. In the show, Lupin has this unhealthy attraction to a woman called Fujiko Mine. Fujiko loves diamonds, particularly in Red Jacket. She’s also more or less asexual (for the most part).

Ryuji: “…I’m gettin’ a real little league baseball feel from it.”

Morgana: “Well then, here’s my suggestion. How about ‘Tilefish Poele’?”

Ryuji: “Tile… uh, what?”

Morgana: “That’s what I ate earlier. It’s commemorative, no?”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: I looked it up, and as far as I can tell, tilefish poele is not an actual thing. The only results I got were a handful of recipes for tilefish and a lot of people doing runs of the base game where they named their group that.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Tilefish is a firm, white, flaky fish that many places don’t use anymore because it typically contains large amounts of mercury. A lot of recipes that call for it can take other types of fish with lower mercury content just fine. Poele is a cooking method involving a covered pot that is used in French cuisine, but it’s typically used with chicken or other meat that has skin on.

Ryuji: “Hell no, you idiot! Ugh… you decide for me.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: By default, the group’s name is The Phantoms. This is kind of a reference to The Spookies from Soul Hackers, who have a logo that looks kind of like the one Ryuji put on the calling card for Kamoshida.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: The thread voted overwhelmingly to name Joker “John Persona” but I kind of screwed that up by recording too early. With another overwhelming vote, we’re naming the group John Persona instead, because we’re all John Persona inside. This name only really shows up online (if you use the thieves guild, which we don’t) but really, we’re all just John Persona inside.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: I can just imagine Sae asking “Who the fuck is John Persona? Where is he? Answer me, dammit!” and Joker just looking at her and laughing. “We’re all John Persona. I’m John Persona. He’s John Persona.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: I like to think that canonically, while Joker gave us his real name, the one he gave to Sae was actually Juan Persoña.

Ryuji: “John Persona. We goin’ with that?”

Ann: “Well now that the name’s set, who’s our next target?”

Ryuji: “There are tons of rotten adults and all. Why not just stick to targeting big names?”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: If this was Persona 1 or 2, this would actually be a route choice. It’s not.

Ryuji: “Yeah, something along those lines. If we go after some bigwig, it’s gotta get on the news, right?”

Ryuji: “Don’t you think more people would believe in us if we did that?”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: This sounds almost exactly like 4chan’s mentality around the time that /b/ was starting to degenerate into shit. At the time (this is like, probably 14 or 15 years ago now, which is just kind of mind-boggling to me) the goal was to get on the news for something incredibly stupid.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: The whole Phantom Thieves idea, apart from being inspired by Chronicle, was also probably inspired by Anonymous (as in the activist group), which kind of didn’t age well. I actually had an account on one of the separate message boards that early Anonymous (back when it was Project Chanology) used and I can tell you the mentality was almost exactly the same. There were even people going “Now that we’re attacking Scientology, what’s next?” like Ryuji does.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Have I mentioned that there’s a character in this game who is basically Anonymous incarnate? There is. We won’t meet them for a while.

Morgana: “That’s not a bad idea… for you, Ryuji.”

Ann: “True. If we become better known… we might be able to give courage to a lot more people.”

Ann: “I don’t really like the idea of just picking someone out of the blue though.”

Ryuji: “Let’s narrow it down to someone we can all agree on then.”

Morgana: “Hm, so we need a bigwig we can decide on unanimously.”

Ann: “I like that unanimous decision part! It’s like we’re making some kind of pact!”

Morgana: “Now then, this is the official formation of the Phantom Thieves organization!”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: The thing is, just like putting Steven Segal in Innocent Sin, having direct references to Anonymous was kind of a bad idea. Not even a year after the base game’s western release, the whole QAnon thing popped up and 4chan’s reputation took an even greater turn from merely being a self-described “ocean of piss” to being a hangout for white supremacy and the alt-right. The thing is, the signs were definitely there in 2014 and 2015. Atlus should’ve fucking known better.

Ann: “Oh no! Our time for the buffet ran out…”

Ryuji: “I guess we’ll just have to talk more tomorrow…”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Let me tell you the other reason I don’t like that they glorified Anonymous. I used to play TF2 with a bunch of 4chan people going back to 2007. Half of them grew out of that and are now relatively well-adjusted adults. The other half… not so much. I’ve lost a lot of friends to that mentality, and it is fucking heartbreaking when a person you’ve known since 2007, where you know their actual name, comes to you and starts preaching QAnon.

Sae: “Honestly speaking, that all sounds absurd. It’s hard to believe that this is even worth listening to.”

Sae: “Still, it can’t be considered nonsense when parts of it align with Kamoshida’s confession.”

Sae: “The same goes for the testimones of the officers who arrested you… but so be it. At any rate, you mentioned something more important.”

Sae: “These two other accomplices, besides this talking cat thing that appeared in your story… from what you’ve been telling me, they’re students at the same school, aren’t they?”

Sae: “Very well. I’ll leave it at that. Let’s continue on. The questioning’s not over, anyway. If you are making this up, the cracks in your story will prove it.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: I hate that the game doesn’t just let us discover the next boss ourselves. Anyway, meet the target of the next arc: Ichiryusai Madarame. Hilariously, this line is wildly inaccurate: Madarame does not specialize in something like ukiyo-e or traditional Japanese sculpture or pottery. He’s a painter, and a western-style one at that.

Sae: “It’s even more incomprehensible than Kamoshida as to why this man was targeted. Where did you come to know him? And how did you learn of his crimes when you weren’t a victim of them? Start by telling me all that you schemed…”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: We lose most of that 30,000 yen, but get to keep 8,000. We’re going to need that to get everyone locked and loaded before the next dungeon.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: We then get a notice about another new feature to Royal: the Thieves Den. We’ll see what that is in a side update immediately following this one.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Before that though, we have another IM we can look at.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: I sure hope Akira deleted that from his phone before Sae got a hold of it, and that Sae didn’t think to just subpoena his cell carrier.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: We spend the night doing two important things. First up, it’s been exactly 16 days since we last fed the plant. Second, we finish watching Wraith for another 3 kindness.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: In bed, we get another cutscene with Igor. I am going to skip it because it’s basically a “Hey, you’re doing confidants, right?” reminder.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: We also get two extra slots in our Persona stock. This will be VERY important in the next dungeon, because we need not one, not two, but THREE new Persona arcana on top of the three we already need for confidants. In fact, we’ll be fusing one of those three before we even go into the next dungeon, thanks to all the grinding I did. This will put us ahead on a confidant by one point.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: By the way, I’m not kidding when I say it’s a tutorial. In the next side update, we’ll play a godawful card game.

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Click Here for the Side Update

9_2iVBrO_400x400: It’s time to go to the Thieves Den for the first time. You might notice that the menu tells us we’re John Persona now. This is part of the reason I’m glad I didn’t name the character John Persona.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: The Thieves Den is basically the Safe House from Payday 2, or the Memorial Hall from Deep Rock Galactic.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: It has a cutscene viewer, which… why.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Concept art gallery. I’ll probably do a single update on this at the end, since more gets added to it as we go.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: This is where the godawful card game is.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Meet Jose. We don’t know his name yet, but we will soon enough. Jose is new to Royal, and adds a whole bunch of features to this game’s equivalent of the Abandoned Factory or Mikage Ruins/Devil’s Peak.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: My first guess on seeing him was that he’s a piece of Philemon the way Marie was a piece of Izanami in P4 Golden, if not Philemon himself (even though we know that Philemon likes to pull the “I’m you in a mask” thing).

9_2iVBrO_400x400: So yeah, this is basically Joker’s Palace. Because apparently everyone can have one of those now.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: P Medals are currency you can use to buy stuff to decorate with. You get them for doing certain achievements, and getting all the achievements gives you a thing that makes it so security level never goes up and allows you to summon any Persona for free from the compendium. This requires a minimum of two complete playthroughs and requires killing four optional super-bosses which I am not going to do. Maybe if it had allowed me to import my save data from the base game.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: You can spend the medals at the Palace Maker machine, which pretty much directly confirms that this is Joker’s Palace. The stuff in “Confidants” only unlocks when you max a confidant, and the stuff in Daily Life requires doing a whole bunch of stuff we have no reason to do.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: As an example, we can buy a statue of Kamoshida’s demon form. I don’t know why we’d want that. The “enemy” category is pretty much entirely statues of the major bosses, including a few you can only actually see on New Game + because they’re of the final bosses.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: The “Metaverse” category has items from the various dungeons. We could buy the big statue of Kamoshida from the church if we wanted. I don’t know why we’d want to do that either.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: We can also buy statues of all of the starter Personas for each character. Unfortunately, there’s no statues of the upgraded Personas or the new Ultimate Personas as far as I know.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: There’s also the option to change the decor. There’s one for each Palace, plus the Velvet Room and the standard set. I picked the Velvet Room.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: This wall will fill in with pictures as we accomplish stuff. Many of these we won’t even be touching - there’s one for using the laundromat ten times and fuck that.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: This one, however, we will DEFINITELY be doing. When I said we’d be doing 100% confidants, I meant it.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: There’s also one for seeing both the Rank 10 cutscenes on the Romance route for all 10 female confidants. This means that yes, we can date Doctor Femdom if we want. She’s a very popular choice, but she’s not the best girl. We can do this without permafucking because the game saves system data every time you save, and the achievements are based off your system data. At some point, probably once we reach June or July, I’ll put up a poll for who we want to go for, if anyone.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: There’s also one for seeing the Rank 10 cutscene on the Friendship route with all of the female confidants. We’ll be getting that one as well.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Tycoon is another way to get P Medals. I’ve heard it’s bullshit hard, but I only actually played on the easiest difficulty because I had no idea how it works. Playing cards in your brain with clones of your friends is a perfectly normal activity.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: The idea is that one player each round is the dealer, and they put down a card. It then cycles… I think left to right… and each player has the opportunity to play a card, so long as the value of the card is higher than the last one put down. Jokers can, of course, be any card you want.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: I started off with a real dumb move. Playing four of a kind gets you a “Revolution”, which reverses card values (so now a 2 is the highest card and an ace the lowest).

9_2iVBrO_400x400: I came in second the first two rounds. The highest-ranking player is the Tycoon, and the lowest is the Beggar. Second place is Rich, third place is Poor. At the end of the round, the Tycoon has to give a card to the Beggar and the Rich has to give a card to the Poor.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: In the last round, I figure out how the fuck the game works and come off with a win. Basically, you want to play your lowest-value cards first and then your highest-value ones. From what I’ve heard, on harder difficulties the AI basically plays like it knows which cards you have. Naturally, there are achievements for winning on the hardest difficulty.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: I also win the game because if you’re the Tycoon and lose, you automatically come in dead last and get no points. If people really want to see how this works, I can stream it a little when I do the P5D stream.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Finally, there’s a thing on the second floor where you can switch to any party member you’ve recruited.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: The exit hall also has a bunch of the promo art for both the base game and Royal on the walls.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: One of these characters will be joining us in the next dungeon. The character on the far left (underneath the shot of Ryuji and Morgana) is the Anonymous character I mentioned in the last update.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Anyway, that’s it for the Thieves Den for now. If you want to change it, let me know and I’ll put stuff down.

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Can’t speak for Japan of course, but up here in Canada, at least my part of it, the hotel buffet is a professional high class dining buffet, not the “low form” of food.

It’s part of the tourism experience; you go to a fancy hotel, you go downstairs and get whatever you desire from an assortment of professionally cooked foods, and then gorge yourself on it. And because of where I live, that means roast caribou and cheesecake, among other things.

My Mom did catering so you’d be surprised how many rich people would get fancy buffet for like, their wedding. Again, probably coloured by my living in the middle of fucking nowhere tourism town.

Yeah, that’s probably very different from how it is in the US. In the US, buffets kind of had a bad reputation for a long time and still kinda do today. I think it’s because it was kind of a meme (how much of it was reality, I don’t know) in the 80s to make fun of the buffets at the casinos in Vegas. There’s also a lot of low-quality chain places (Golden Corral is one) that didn’t really help much with the reputation issue.

I’m sure there probably are nice ones somewhere, but the idea of going to a hotel and doing a buffet there is just not something I’ve ever done. Probably because I usually stay in crap hotels.

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So, showing who the next villain is can work depending on how it’s done. It makes sense for, say, Ace Attorney, where they sometimes show the villain at the start so the player knows who did the murder and can focus on how the murder happened, (AA1 also plays around with the concept rather than always telling you exactly who the villain is, but that’s a separate tangent.) I can’t say I remember Persona 5 doing anything interesting with it, though. It’s really just a clunky way to say, “hey here’s the next arc.” (And I’m gonna be honest, if they didn’t want to go down the subtle route with introducing arcs they should have given each one a flashy title card. I’d be into that.)

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Adding more fuel onto the “I’d like Morgana more if they were just a cat and not a mascot half the time” fire is that for some reason I love the idea of John Persona and his cat renting DVDs to watch. Like Danny trying to get Nick to watch Point Break from Hot Fuzz.

Also I get the feeling they won’t but between the needles that were visible in the interrogation room in the first update and Sae’s incredibly leading questions I feel a little doubt that any of this happened. Like the problems with hypnotic memory recall.

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Click Here for Update 13

9_2iVBrO_400x400: When we go to the calendar, there’s a new poll in the bottom-right corner. This will update periodically as we follow the rise and fall of John Persona.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Someone needs to tell the website operator that we’re John Persona, not the Phantom Thieves.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: The Big Bang Burger challenge is the equivalent to the Rainy Day Beef Bowl in Persona 4. It raises all of your stats by 2 for only 500 yen, which is freaking amazing. However… we can’t do it until the end of the month.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: The reason is that while the mega-burger is great, it’s actually kind of bad for grinding individual stats. Plus, we need to do a couple of things to unlock a confidant with a strict time limit.

Morgana: “A huge burger, huh? Interesting. I bet giving that a go will increase your Guts.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: This is a very, very bad line to have left in. While the burger does increase guts, there are far better (and cheaper) ways to train guts if that’s what you need… and we don’t really need it right now anyway.

Kawakami: “The gist is, don’t go around talking about the incident. That’s all. The police are still investigating Mr. Kamoshida, so I can’t say anything myself.”

Kawakami: “As a teacher though, I’m ashamed for not having noticed that a student was suffering like that. I’m not defending him, but as a colleague, he just seemed like… well, a normal person.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: This is actually more or less true for a lot of sexual abusers.

Kawakami: “Honestly, it still doesn’t feel real. I guess people can have multiple sides to them.”

Morgana: “The teachers have it rough, huh?”

Kawakami: “Oh yeah, I just remembered something I learned about psychology. They say that humans have several different personalities hidden in their subconscious.”

Morgana: “Different personalities?”

Kawakami: “Oh, to be clear, I’m not talking about multiple personality disorder. These different personalities can be a different gender or a different age from you.”

Kawakami: “I mean, if you think about how gods and monsters in myths were first based on the human image… if you actually saw one of those personalities with your own eyes, it might look like a monster.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Yes game, I know what a Persona is. I’ve only played all but one of them.

Morgana: “Mm-hmm…”

Kawakami: “Well, I’m just saying what I’ve heard. It feels like I just how understood what I learned long ago.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: This gets us two free Knowledge points. We didn’t even have to answer a question!

Ryuji: " ‘I wanna make my friend apologize for not returning the stuff I lent him.’ Ugh, deal with that yourself!"

Ryuji: “That’s prolly a normal reaction for now, but… they’ll see soon enough! If we can take care of two or three famous guys, people’ll have to believe we exist.”

Ann: “So about those big shots… we don’t have any leads yet, right? Plus there’s that rumor about you two threatening Kamoshida too…”

Morgana: “Looks like you’ll just have to live a normal, honest school life for the time being. Still, make sure you stay prepared just in case anything comes up, all right?”

Ryuji: “I’ll keep an eye out for info on any big shots that might be comin’ around.”

Ann: “And I’ll try to dig up some dirt online.”

Ryuji: “We went and formed the Phantom Thieves group, but we can’t even find a target.”

Ann: “There, there…”

Ryuji: “I guess sometimes things just don’t go the way we want 'em to.”

Kobayakawa: “You saw the state Kamoshida-kun was in, didn’t you? It’s as if his personality has completely changed. Something is definitely wrong here.”

Makoto: “I’m not sure I follow…”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Like all the other party members, Makoto’s portraits were almost entirely re-done from the base game. In the base game, Makoto had only one pose: it’s the one you see above. You can kind of tell where the new ones were added because they stick out.

Kobayakawa: “From what I’ve heard, it appears as though some students were meddling in his business. If they did something to him… who could they be?”

Makoto: “Are you saying that these students may have caused Mr. Kamoshida to change?”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: You know what’s weird? Why is it that they left the Japanese honorifics in half the time, but then drop them?

Kobayakawa: “That is what I wish to know… even if it takes some probing into student matters. I would like you to look into this for me.”

Makoto: “It is true that there are many rumors regarding Mr. Kamoshida, but… do you mean all this talk about those Phantom Thieves?”

Kobayakawa: “It is undeniable that Mr. Kamoshida has changed in some way. I’d like to have a grasp of the cause.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: More awkward lines.

Makoto: “Oh…”

Kobayakawa: “I will continue speaking to Mr. Kamoshida myself. Unless you find whomever did this, these irresponsible rumors will likely never die down. Don’t you agree?”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Here’s my problem with this scene. Kobayakawa is pretty much straight-up acknowledging that he believes there’s some kind of supernatural force at play here, rather than the simplest explanation of “a couple of kids found out about the abuse, went to Kamoshida, and told him he could either turn himself in or they’d go to the police.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Now, this would work if this game acted like it was a sequel to SMT If and had like, fliers around the school warning people about demons. The principal would have no idea if Kamoshida had been possessed or if there was a mundane explanation for it and wants Makoto to look into it before he goes hiring a devil buster.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: I forgot the game reveals that this early, but Makoto is Sae’s younger sister. There will be a lot of parallels between them and Tatsuya and Katsuya Suou in Persona 2, both thematically and otherwise.

Makoto: “Th-thank you…”

Kobayakawa: “Your lineage must certainly play a part in this excellence. Your sister is still young, yet she holds an admirable position at the Public Prosecutor’s Office, no?”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Sae clearly graduated from the same school as Athena and Apollo in Phoenix Wright, because I think she’s in her early 20s.

Makoto: “…Yes.”

Kobayakawa: “Haha, how wise. It’s no wonder you’re our student council president. I’d appreciate if you’d look into this as soon as possible. I ask that you begin at once.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Way to say the same thing twice in the same line.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: And oh look, the principal is part of a shadowy conspiracy.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: “Man, I really can’t wait to keep living this double life” is something no real person has ever said.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: For that, we get a piece of chalk thrown at us.

Mishima: “Have you seen that Phantom Aficionado Website?”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Are you ready for Mishima to become the second worst character in this game?

Mishima: “I’m the one who started it.”

Mishima: “Um… you guys are the Phantom Thieves, aren’t you?”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: If Mishima figured this shit out, Makoto will probably be on our ass tomorrow.

Mishima: “…Sorry. Although… if things really are as I think, I should keep it a secret. Kamoshida used me, and I did some horrible things to you guys.”

Mishima: “This isn’t much of a way for me to apologize for it… but if there’s anything I can do to help, just let me know!”

Mishima: “That’s… all I needed to say. It’s not just Kamoshida. There are tons of evil adults out there.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Everyone over 30 is the devil, I read it in 1965.

Mishima: “But I’m sure the Phantom Thieves will do something. They can’t let this end after just one target.”

Mishima: “That’s why I wanted to make a forum where people could post their problems.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: So you uh, made Nextdoor?

Mishima: “There are probably a lot of people who have high hopes for the Phantom Thieves’ next move. So I’ve also implemented an anonymous poll on the site.”

Mishima: “I wanna work on this forum so eventually it’ll be packed with tons of supportive posts. I’d really like to help out in the Phantom Thieves’ acts of justice! Can I, please?”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: I think what Atlus was trying to go for is the whole idea of an attorney never asking a question they don’t already know the answer to.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Mishima’s confidant is special. Unlike the others, you never need a matching Persona for it. His confidant will rank up every single time you spend time with him.

Ryuji: “Geez, it was a little awkward tryin’ to figure out when to walk over here.”

Ann: “So that forum is Mishima-kun’s…”

Morgana: “Has he figured out our identities!?”

Ann: “Even so, I think it’ll be fine. He seemed to be playing it cool.”

Ryuji: “I guess we should have a little chat about this later.”

Morgana: “I will say though… a forum where people can post problems may prove unexpectedly useful.”

Ryuji: “Anyways, we gotta get lookin’ for a new target.”

Ann: “And we need to stay sharp until we manage to find one. Once we do, we’ll have to head into another Palace, so we should prep our equipment and -”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Oh boy, exams. Exams in Persona 4 were never really that useful. Doing well on them got you S-Link points for all of your main party members, only by the time you could do really well on them you’d already maxed those out if you were going for 100%. That’s pretty much also the case here.

Ann: “Judging by that reaction, I’d assume you’re going to struggle this time too?”

Ryuji: “It’s not like you’re any better! All you’re good at is… English!”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: You heard it here first, folks. Ann is absolutely not Lisa Silverman with a different hairstyle because she can speak English (she absolutely is Lisa with a different hairstyle).

Ann: “I’d rather that than be bad at every subject!”

Morgana: “Even your Japanese is questionable at best, Ryuji.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: I got back on the whole “let’s learn Japanese” train a few months ago. I’m honestly convinced that Japanese’s days as a language are numbered. In fact, I’m kind of amazed it still exists at all given how clunky it is.

Ryuji: “What’s questionable is whether you’re really even a human. Ha! Good comeback, huh?”

Morgana: “Let’s discuss this with our fists!”

Ryuji: “Bring it!”

Ann: “Will you two stop it!?”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: We need to do a couple of things before ending the day, namely buying all the books from the bookstore. Medjed is Persona 5’s name for Anonymous.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: We also need to get a copy of Beverly Hills 90210. I don’t know that I’d call anything about that show realistic.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Now that we’ve accomplished those goals, it’s time to talk to Ann. Notice that Ryuji’s logo is on the back chalkboard. I got a close-up in case someone can translate it.

Ann: “It’s Shiho. Well… I went to visit her in the hospital. She… she said she was sorry.”

Ann: “Sorry for not telling me about Kamoshida… about all the things he was doing to her.”

Ann: “But it was my fault too. I didn’t realize how much trouble she was in… I wasn’t there for her… so I apologized as well.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: I haven’t mentioned it I don’t think, but I kind of hated Ann’s confidant. It’s as much about Shiho as it is about her.

Ann: “All of this happened because of how weak I am… that’s why I believed Kamoshida’s authority outweighed Shiho’s own ability to earn her starting spot.”

Ann: “Akira, do you remember the last time I talked to you like this? When I got that phone call from Kamoshida… and cried.”

Ann: “I felt so alone… scared, even. But because you were there for me, I decided not to go.”

Ann: “I was a little surprised at how pushy you were about it… but I see now you just wanted to help. …Thanks.”

Ann: “You’re so kind, Akira. Back then, people used to call me all sorts of names… ‘prissy bitch’, ‘Kamoshida’s girl’… I got tired of it pretty quickly.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: There’s a pretty sizeable chunk of the fanbase that has cranked out a surprising amount of fanart of Ann being gay, and honestly I think that would’ve just been better if it was in the actual game.

Ann: “But to tell you the truth, someday I want to be able to take labels like that in stride.”

Ann: “Hey, um… Personas are the power of the heart, right? That means if my heart get stronger, my Persona will too.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: This is the game trying to tell you something in case you haven’t played Persona 4. In Persona 4, maxing out your S-Link with a party member caused them to get their ultimate Persona. The same is true here.

Ann: “So… I want to strengthen my heart. And I want to use that strength to help the people around me.”

Ann: “I hope we can save people from trouble, just like we did when we changed Kamoshida’s heart. Though honestly… I don’t even know what ‘strong’ is.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Akira goes “I’ll show you what strength is!” and proceeds to order a jar of pickles to the table, which he opens after only six attempts.

Ann: “But I’m going to find the answer. I promise.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: The game goes through a lot to try and set you up with Ann as your romance choice.

Ann: “Huh? Really…!?”

Ann: “Thanks! I feel like I’m a little stronger already! I guess that doesn’t really count though, huh?”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Just like Ryuji, Ann gets an ability that can reset negotiations with certain shadow types.

Ann: “A strong heart… hm… how about this? I won’t get any refills on fountain drinks! I mean, they’re free, so not getting any would mean you have a strong heart!”

Ann: “…Is that not right?”

Ann: “Now I feel like I have a better idea of who I want to be. Also, I’m going to think of how I can strengthen my heart.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: I dunno, have you tried learning Cantonese and having an unhealthy attraction to a gay guy?

Ann: “If I think of anything, I’ll let you know. I hope you’ll join me again next time!”

Ann: “Yeah, I’m counting on you! You’re such a nice guy!”

Ann: “Oh! how bout you help me come up with ways to train my heart? Just lemme know when a really good idea hits you, okay?”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Oh, or maybe you could try getting really into kung fu. Drop the whole whip thing and just use your fists.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Even though we only just got the ability to go outside at night what, a week ago? Sojiro will now let us go outside of Yongen-Jaya at night.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: What we’re going to do next is something that, as far as I know, there’s no way to know you have to do unless you’ve already tried to do it.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Remember the politician we saw outside the train station? He’s a confidant. The thing is, he won’t let you spend time with him unless you’ve worked the beef bowl job twice. The beef bowl job takes place at night, so this is the first time we can actually do it.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: This sounds a lot like my job, where we spent the entire year having so much work that no one could keep on top of it but also lost several people and had a hiring freeze put into place.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: As you can see, our politician friend is here - he’s the guy in the suit and tie directly to the right of Joker.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: This gets us 3,600 yen and three points in proficiency. The only reason we’re doing this is for the confidant: Toranosuke’s confidant is one of the only ones in the game with a time limit that ends before the last day.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: While I’ve normally been trying to keep days together in updates, I’m going to have to split this one between two updates. The reason is that after the upcoming cutscene, there is a tutorial that is very long and made longer in Royal.

9_2iVBrO_400x400: The pollen warning is actually a dungeon thing, but we won’t be seeing it.

Morgana: “People are really talking about the Kamoshida incident. No one in this car knows that we’re the ones who did it…”

Kawakami: “Anyway, today we’ll be talking about The Tale of the Bamoo Cutter.”

Kawakami: “Most theorize it’s the oldest story in Japan; for some, it’s the oldest science-fiction story in the world.”


9_2iVBrO_400x400: This is from a card game that is now mostly dead because it sucked, but it’s probably my favorite depiction of Kaguya because she’s just kind of “Yeah fuck it I have Star Wars tech but I’m going to dress like I’m Imperial Japanese just because I can.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: It’s also like, one of a handful of cards from that game that I don’t have. I played it for like a month before realizing how bullshit it was and that the only reason anyone liked it was for the anime girls.

Kawakami: “But if you ask me, it’s the oldest story in Japan about a terrible woman. I mean, Princess Kaguya gives her suitors absurd tasks, demands fancy gifts, then runs off to the moon.”

Kawakami: “Some men lose their fortunes, some are humiliated, and some even get serious wounds or go blind.”

Kawakami: “Women like Princess Kaguya actually show up in a lot of stories from around the world.”

Kawakami: “Now then, Kurusu-kun. You’ve probably heard that a woman who uses her wiles to lead people to their doom is a femme fatale. So what’s the literal translation of the phrase ‘femme fatale’?”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: This is probably a bitch and a half to answer in Japanese, but it’s almost insultingly easy in English.

Kawakami: “That is correct. The answer is ‘fatal woman’. In French, of course. Some famous examples are the witch Morgan le Fay from Arthurian legend and Queen Salome from the Bible. Not to mention the wild, seductive dancer of opera, Carmen.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Game, I fucking get it. You didn’t have to do this with Personas 1, 2, 3, or 4 because I could look this shit up for myself except when I couldn’t because you used a Chinese mythological figure with a name transliterated into Japanese or something.

Ryuji: “There ain’t even a hint of a hint about a new Palace.”

Ann: “We can’t get everything online. Finding a post with a name and location is asking a lot…”

Ryuji: “Guess we just gotta find one ourselves then!”

Morgana: “Are you seriously suggesting we look for a target that even the police have overlooked?”

Ryuji: “…Yeah, you’re right. We should prolly just hold off ‘til exams are done with, huh? We can wait and see for a little longer, then worry about comin’ up empty-handed if it happens…”

Ryuji: “We’ll get outta here once we’re done chattin’. Anyways, what’s Miss Council President want with us?”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Oh right, she’s also the class rep. Hmm… short-haired female class rep… where have I seen that one before? Could it be that Hashino is a fucking hack and just made a less-interesting version of Yukino with Tatsuya’s backstory tacked on and hoped no one would notice because no one ever played the earlier games? Nah, couldn’t be.

Makoto: “The troublemaker, the center of gossip, and the infamous transfer student. Hmm, interesting combination.”

Makoto: “By the way… it seems as though you got to know Mr. Kamoshida pretty well.”

Ryuji: “Yeah, y’know he’s only been here a month or so.”

Makoto: “Hm… I heard Mr. Kamoshida used a volleyball team member to spread details of your past record. Don’t you hate him? Mr. Kamoshida, I mean.”

Ryuji: “What’s all this about? My friend here’s an upstanding guy.”

Makoto: “I don’t mean to offend. Many students have been shaken up by what happened with Mr. Kamoshida.”

Makoto: “The rumors about that odd, calling card-esque posting aren’t going away, either.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: If you ever play this game yourself, here’s a fun thing to do. Any time Makoto comes on screen, just hit the fast-forward button until she’s no longer visible.

Ann: “I didn’t expect someone like you would care about that tactless stuff, Niijima-senpai.”

Ryuji: “I dunno that it was tactless. Anyways, we done here? We can’t leave if you keep talkin’ to us.”

Makoto: “At least try to understand my position. Being forced to deal with this horseplay…”

Ann: “Horseplay!?”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Just like her sister, really.

Ann: “What was that about?”

Morgana: “…She’s onto us. That girl seems rather sharp. We should be cautious of her.”

Ryuji: “She really pisses me off!”

Ryuji: “Talk about a pain in the ass.”

Morgana: “That reminds me… study hard. Especially you, Ryuji. There are bound to be traps that will need to be solved with brains.”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: He acts like Eikichi didn’t completely defeat a laser hallway by admiring himself.

Morgana: “Keep in mind that everything you do in your daily lives has an impact on your abilities.”

Ann: “True, studying won’t be so bad if we just think of it as helping us prepare to be phantom thieves…”

Ryuji: “I guess you got a point. But man, it’s just so lame… I was all fired up about helpin’ people, not about studyin’…”

9_2iVBrO_400x400: Next time, we’ll see Persona 5’s equivalent of the Abandoned Factory. We’ll also see someone’s fetish in action, a dumb Ghibli reference, and grind to level 15 just to make the next dungeon even more of a joke.

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In case you just saw the last update, I’m aiming to have the P5D stream tonight at around 8 EST. It will cover all the songs up to where we are now, and you’ll get to see just how much of a trainwreck P5D is.

Edit: Apparently, you don’t have access to like, half the song list to start because of course you don’t, and the songs you start with are the theme to the final boss and the theme to the Casino, which only plays when we get there and not in the intro. I might have to grind off-screen a bit.

Edit again: I grinded for like an hour and got what we need. We’ll be doing:

9_2iVBrO_400x400: I didn’t realize until I played it the first time, but this game (in addition to being a blatant cashgrab) was a mistake in more ways than one.

In my defense I know nothing about these games and only called him Principal Kingpin because of his looks, I didn’t know this whole scene about how Fisk has leverage over the prosecutor’s office scene was coming up.

At least we can honestly answer that we’re not in the Phantom Thieves. Now if they asked if we were John Persona…

Oh, trust me, I saw you call the “punch Philemon in the face” moment near the beginning of Innocent Sin. But yeah, I have a feeling that someone at Atlus was watching Netflix Daredevil when they designed the principal. Joker’s suit underneath the jacket/cape thing he wears even kind of looks like Daredevil’s - except in black instead of red.

Yeah like, I don’t know where this game goes, but Principle Elf-Ears is definitely immediately suspicious because of this.

La Lune! The Moon. Our big shiny mom in the sky. Symbolic of darkness, terror, and hidden enemies- but with a positive twist, in that this is more of a revelatory card. It is not foreboding danger, but revealing it. The dog, cat, and lobster are symbolic of natural threats and the abyss given form.

The general idea of the card is that it is an understanding of threats. In that sense, Mishima is probably being set up as a sort of early warning system. By making his fansite of Phantom Thief groupies, we are now seeing the depths of human nature, and have an early warning system if things start to go bad. The website ITSELF is the Moon, and Mishima it’s embodiment. Neat!

Also as an aside in some variations of the Moon card, it instead of these animals has an old woman sewing some stuff under moonlight. P5 has chosen to depict that old woman being attacked by the things that represent humanity’s nature and the terror of the unknown. So… there’s probably symbolism here but it’s also just really funny to me for some reason.

Medjed is also the egyptian god that looks like a person wearing a sheet-ghost costume. A being of immense power but always hidden- if you were going to make an Anon group, it’s a decent enough name symbolism wise. It also looks unironically like an ancient shitpost I mean look at this.

I kiiinda like that conceptually, since helping someone get over a painful event is a good way to become their friend and confident, but it seems like this might be taking away from learning about Ann as a character… and also if she’s meant to be Lovers and her support is about her best friend who is a girl they should end up dating.

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Also hey here’s a two hour video on YIIK for you Timrod. Highlights include; you’re in it!

Yeah. My problem with it wasn’t that Shiho was in her confidant so much as it is that at times, she kind of totally subsumes it. It actually got to the point where I was like “Why isn’t Shiho just her own confidant?”.

I think that if they’d had someone more talented write this game, Ann absolutely would’ve been gay. I’m not even entirely sure Hashino understood what he was doing, since Hashino is kind of a known homophobe and he wrote a character where it’s easier to interpret her as gay than straight. Trust me, if I remember her confidant in the original game correctly, there’s more than one point where that happens.

On one level, I can understand why they wouldn’t make Ann gay, and let me explain using an example from Innocent Sin. There were people who played through Innocent Sin and didn’t understand that Anna is gay (and that most likely, Yukino is as well, assuming she’s not bisexual). Atlus had to explain that in supplementary material that never made it outside Japan. Now, you’d think this would be because people didn’t play through Caracol twice to see the bad ending, but they also had to clarify this with Jun.

On the other though, a good writer absolutely could pull it off and there’s not really a good excuse when almost half the Innocent Sin cast was gay.

Yeah, I saw that earlier! I’ll have to watch the video at work today.

Edit: Oh christ no. Oh fuck no. No!

Oh fuck Innocent Sin was cursed and I got shunted into a new universe where YIIK is getting updates. I thought that update already happened and they just removed some unused shit! Fuck! My predictions:

  1. They’re going to force me to play through it again to get the new content, because the Allansons know about my LP and want me to suffer.

  2. The new character will be a dialog box with legs that walks around and pads the game out by 2 or 3 times. Every other line is an advertisement for that Chromo-whatever game that is just the remake of Two Brothers. Fuck!

  3. It will contain multiple softlocks because I know it will.

  4. They’ll fix the LP Toss bug.

Needless to say, if this update drops, I will immediately re-open the YIIK LP and do it. I’m hoping it never does.

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I came expecting a new update. Instead I got a two hour long video about YIIK. The Videlectrix catalog came early this year, because that was a great trip.

Back on P5, I was starting to write about how I didn’t like the Japanese voice acting in this game (not that I like the English - I haven’t heard it), but then I realized I was heavily basing that on P5D, which was the actors spouting vague, no-context exclamations in a recording booth for 3 hours, which isn’t a fair judgment.

But Nana Mizuki as Ann is still really bad and I hate every word that comes out of her mouth. Which is weird because I’ve heard in things before and she’s pretty much always good. I can’t remember what she was good in because all my anime knowledge has poured out my ear and coalesced in some metaphysical space into my Shadow, which I will inevitably encounter, reject, and be killed by. But yeah she was in…Symphogear…other garbage I can’t think of…even more garbage I can think of but is so bad I’m not even willing to name it…and she was fine in all of them. I think.

Look they did a Fusion Forecast and calculated the precise correct ratio of genders, ages, etc for all the Social Links and Shiho being a confidant would just be one high school girl too many. You might be wondering how it’s possible for a Japan game to have ‘too many’ high school girls, and they don’t know either, but Shiho being a confidant triggered Hashino’s death clip.

Either that or in the original script Shiho died, and by the time they decided to walk that back all the confidants had been decided. That’s another possibility.

The next update is actually almost done - I just need to go record the night of 05/08 quick. Your point about the voiceactors is definitely correct. Voiceactors have never been Atlus’s strong suit. I don’t even know why they bother. I’m sure the Japanese players probably turn them off, and the Western players usually set it to Japanese to escape the equally bad English voiceovers.

I looked at the list of stuff Nana Mizuki has been in and it looks like a lot of magical girl stuff I don’t watch.

It’s because he would’ve had to write something original for once and not just steal from the earlier games.