Persona 5 Strikers has lastly launched worldwide for PlayStation 4, PC, and Swap, and also you in all probability know by now that it is a sorta-sequel spinoff that continues the timeline of Persona 5. However with the unique RPG not being accessible on non-PlayStation platforms, the query of whether or not or not newcomers can nonetheless get pleasure from Strikers is a pertinent one. And the straightforward reply is: Sure, however your mileage will differ.
In my Persona 5 Strikers review, I praised the sport’s action-RPG fight mechanics, glorious soundtrack, and new characters, amongst different issues. And the truth that I bought to see my previous associates, the Phantom Thieves, once more as they go on a summer season trip to get pleasure from life and save the world yet one more time was an actual deal with. The opening hours do spend time plainly re-establishing the persona traits of its returning solid, however after all, it is not the identical as seeing them develop into who they’re of their 100-hour journey prior. So if you wish to have a extremely deep bond with the solid, I might suggest taking part in Royal first.
However, the charisma of the Phantom Thieves shines via in how they specific themselves and struggle within the Metaverse, the alternate dimension the place all of the battles happen. If they do not make a robust impression on you when assembly them of their regular lives, they’re positive to win you over with the best way they stylishly tear via demonic adversaries. Their personas, particular assaults, and distinctive animations in Strikers actually embody the Phantom Thieves’ preventing spirit, and that alone says loads about who they’re.
After I take a step again and take into consideration Strikers’ callbacks to the unique story of Persona 5, they assist present context for who the characters are, why they carry a particular demeanor, and draw parallels between the 2 video games. Aside from happening a number of months after the top of Persona 5, only a few story-critical issues in Strikers are a direct continuation of earlier storylines. There is no such thing as a “the story to date” sort of recap, however that additionally would not be completely essential.
Understanding Persona 5’s story is just not crucial to understanding the occasions of Strikers, as a lot of the main story beats early on harken again to what a specific character skilled in that recreation. Nonetheless, having a body of reference and context definitely enriches the characterization. For instance, Ann deeply sympathizes with the primary villain as a result of they confronted related struggles–you then come to know that a number of essential elements in life led them down very totally different paths. It is a narrative system that is used with Yusuke and Haru similarly. Whereas this historic context does not obscure the story’s occasions to the purpose they lose all impression, you will not get the total connection and could also be left questioning why the Phantom Thieves act or really feel a sure method.
As you get additional into Strikers, it begins to tackle a course of its personal. That may principally be attributed to the characters Sophia and Zenkichi, who make their debut on this recreation. As their tales come into clearer focus within the second half, the Phantom Thieves turn into extra of a lens to understand these characters and a car to assist them develop, and lots of the overarching messages would nonetheless come via. There’s a late-game dungeon that spells out an honest chunk of what occurs in a few of Persona 5’s concluding hours, however a lot occurs within the unique recreation that it is extra in regards to the journey than the vacation spot.
One other query is that if you’ll want to play Persona 5 Royal (the definitive model that options unique story content material). I imply, it is best to; it is one of many few video games that has earned a coveted 10/10 from GameSpot. Nonetheless, Strikers does not pull something instantly from Royal. There are a number of traces of dialogue that might be perceived as allusions to what transpired in Royal’s story content material, however even that is debatable. So long as you completed the unique model of Persona 5, you will be set going into Strikers story-wise.
Given the comparatively gentle reliance on figuring out precisely what occurred within the unique RPG, Persona 5 Strikers simply could be what attracts you into the sequence, and it might be your subsequent favourite factor.
On the finish of the day, Persona 5 (and Royal, particularly) is without doubt one of the finest video games of the earlier era. However given the mandatory time funding, it is nonetheless loads to ask to play it simply so you may try Strikers. As an alternative, you may consider Strikers as a extra streamlined expertise of what a Persona recreation can provide whereas being meaty sufficient to carry its personal in its 40-ish hour runtime. The distinctive fight system, premise of occurring a highway journey throughout Japan, and unimaginable soundtrack are motive sufficient to leap in. As as to if or not you want to play the unique RPG earlier than giving Strikers a shot, I might say it is a sturdy suggestion that you simply do, however not a necessity.
Admittedly, I’ve performed some video games inside a sequence out of order and got here away hooked sufficient to hunt out earlier entries. I can see a situation the place you play Strikers and are available away with a robust curiosity for the place these characters got here from and the way the Phantom Thieves got here to be. Given the comparatively gentle reliance on figuring out precisely what occurred within the unique RPG, Persona 5 Strikers simply could be what attracts you into the sequence, and it might be your subsequent favourite factor. I might go as far to say that there is no such thing as a improper solution to go about it.