Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 3 FES

Shoot yourself in the head... with your friends.

Release date: April 22, 2008
Developed by: Atlus
Genre: RPG/Social simulator
Playtime: ~70 hours (The Journey)

Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 3 FES absolutely floored me. This is hands down one of the greatest games ever made.

This is the first of the modern style of Persona games where you have a social life aside from dungeon crawling. I had some concerns when I started this game; I had already played through Persona, Persona 2: Innocent Sin and Persona 4 Golden. Discussion of P3 FES online is a bit mixed. There's a significant contingent of people who say that you should play the PSP port (which removes the 3D environments except dungeons, removes animated cutscenes and is styled mostly as a visual novel). There's a significant contingent of people who sing its praises. There's a significant amount of people who won't touch it until it's remade. I'm here to say that you should play this game regardless of any concerns you have (and that you probably should play the FES version).

You wouldn't be wrong to think that with games so ambitious as Persona that they would surely get better with each iteration. Actually, I think that hasn't been the case. I've played all of the modern main series games (3 FES, 4 Golden and 5) and 3 stands above them all. I'd like to discuss why in a few different ways. Thus, I'm going to break this review up into parts so you can experience my thoughts differently depending on where you stand with the series.