Saturday, March 28, 2015

Video Game Review: Persona Retrospective: Persona (PSP) Part 6: Trees of Green

Our heroes start to wander the school looking to see what the situation is and to catch up with Maki, however they run across some familiar people behaving in a rather unfamiliar way. Like for example when they encounter Ms Saeko she doesn't talk and is a perpetual sadness golem.
Or at least this is my head cannon as to why. But you can guess for yourselves.
 From that bit of what the hell the gang heads to the principal's office to find that Hanya, is actually being nice, is concerned for the safety and well-being of his students and wants to protect them from Aki and her Demons!
Now we know what the Deva system does!
Thinking that they've probably gone nuts, the gang tries to leave but run into Yukino in the entrance hall. She seems confused when Nanjo brings up playing the Persona game and going to the hospital, which further cements the theory that they may not be in their world. More evidence of that is presented when they run into Yuko on the 2nd floor who is acting far more stuck-up and snooty then when the gang last saw her.
She went from Hinata to Asuka in nothing flat, going so far as to asking why Nanjo is hanging around "That sort".
After that, the gang finds Maki and Yosuke in room 2-5. And yes this is in fact the Yosuke from their world that disappeared two months back.
Remember dude, a man wears a scar as a medal.
Yosuke explains that he and Chisato are from their world confirming to the group that this in fact an alternate universe and not the past despite everything looking exactly like it was one year ago. However there are two notable differences, the Police station is now a forest and there is a castle where the hospital used to be. Yosuke also confirms that the Maki that has been in the group to this point isn't their Maki, but the Maki from this universe. Maki wasn't trying to trick them or anything, she just didn't know for herself until she got back since she never thought that she might have just traveled to another world, mostly because she's sane. She says that she dosed off and them BAM she's in their world. Mark of course asked why she didn't at least mention any of those details, but then again, would they have believed her if she did? Because, again that just sounds crazy on top of everything else that's going on. Maki just figured that everything would be fixed if they just beat Kandori. Yosuke tells them that Chisato is with Aki but before the group can take action, an earthquake occurs and the school transforms just like the hospital, the architecture changes and the place is infested with demons. The one responsible is Aki, she's caught on to the group and is trying to kill them and destroy the school in one swoop; and to make sure that nobody escapes, she removes all the exits. So now the only course of action is to find Aki and stop her. So once the gang finds the Nurse's office, heal up, saves and head to the Velvet Room to create more Personas, they fight their way through the school.Along the way the gang reassures the students they find that they'll save the school from the demons. They also hear from a student that there's a girl that looks just like Aki hiding out in the forest and that it was a flower garden before Aki and the demons showed up. In the art room the gang catches up with Reiji who is protecting a girl from a demon that is attacking her. Reiji then summons his Persona, Bres of the Devil Arcana and kills the demon with one attack.
Bres was a king of the Tuatha De Danann in Irish mythology. He ruled with his wife Brigid before being slain by his predecessor Nuadha for his tyrannical rule and his favor toward his kinsmen, the Fomorians.
 The gang clues Reiji in on how they currently aren't in their world and that they were sent there by Kandori and that Reiji must be the kid that Dr Nikolai mentioned beign sent trought he rift. Reiji explains that he was pulled into this world by a girl in a white dress. As soon as Mark mentions that Kandori is in the world with them Reiji joins up, no questions asked; that is if you've completed the required steps mentioned in the previous parts of this retrospective and only if you didn't pick any of the others to join the group. With our fifth man on the team the group continues the trek across the school. Near the end there is a save point and a Velvet Room, so if you have any spell cards, now would be a good time to make new Personas and give at least two of them to each team member if their levels are high enough to equip them. Once all the prep is taken care of you encounter Aki in the school courtyard. Maki threatens to spank Aki unless she fixes the school, but Aki only listens to Kandori so that's a big no-go. In response she calls Maki flat-chested,  Mark a monkey-boy and  generally acts like a petulant brat. Finally deciding to kill them she chants "Erusaer Tsymmom" and summons a monster.
A mechanical Rat with a machine gun on its back named Tesso.

Despite it's stupid looking design Tesso can cause some rather big problems for your party, especially with its Magry and Megido attacks which can attack all members of your party at once and unless you have a lot of revival beads and recovery items, well good luck. It is vulnerable to Electric and rush attacks so that helps. Once the rat is scrap Aki teleports away, however Yosuke comes in to tell the gang that the school is back to normal and all the demons are gone, he also says that he wants to introduce them to someone who is investigating the two worlds and could be of some help. So the gang heads up to the library to meet their new ally.
This is Tsutomu Kurouri, an alleged expert on the occult but mostly gives wrong info and is socially awkward.
However in this universe Tsutomu is not only eloquent and well-spoken; but he actually knows what the hell he's talking about. Tsutomu theorizes that the events that are happening in the world, thought at first seemingly unrelated are in fact the machinations of someone or something and that the black door that appeared in the library is also connected. However only those that are tied by the same bonds as the events can access the door, this however does not include him. Nanjo conculdes that it's up to Naorin, himself, Mark, Maki and Reiji to uncover the truth. Tsutomu asks who holds the tread, Maki replies with Kandori's name and Tsutomu was expecting that very name, in fact he was foretold of these events by a certain man at the Shrine. So off to the shrine they go. There they find Philemon who says that they world that they're in is indeed a replica of their world, and that this world is where Kandori's ambitions lie. If they pursue him they will eventually discover what the nature of this world really is and how to get back to their world.
Hopefully it won't involve this butt-plug,
 this Jackass,
 or anything like this, because things are crazy enough as it is.
He then says that Kandori has set up shop on the east side of town and if he finds what he is looking for, both worlds are screwed. Philemon also says that the only way to access the east side is through the subway terminal, however the place is guarded by a monster and it can only be stopped by the Expel Mirror. The gang however don't know where the Mirror is. However I do, till next time kiddies!

Please be sure to read, spread the links, re-tweet and follow me on Twitter @OnDavidsBrain!

Shin Megami Tensai Persona is owned by Atlus and Sega.
Soul Eater is owned by Square Enix, Studio Bones, Funimation and Atsushi Ōkubo.
Bizzaro World is owned by DC Comics and Otto Binder.
Chappelle's Show is owned by Dave Chappelle, Comedy Central, MGM Television and Comedy Partners.
Kamen Rider is owned by Ishinomori Productions, Toei Productions, and Bandai.
Exiles is owned by Marvel Comics, The Walt Disney Company and Judd Winick.
Kingdom Hearts is owned by Square Enix, Disney Interactive Studios, Tetsuya Nomura, and Shinji Hashimoto.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Video Game Review: Persona Retrospective: Persona (PSP) Part 5: Hostile Takeover

Once the group created new Personas they head off to the Subway and find Elly. Of course she's surprised to find Maki up and walking but decides now isn't the time to be asking questions, especially when she says that the subway tunnels are all buried. After Mark fills Elly in on what she missed she offers her services, but in this case the gang refuses and head off to the Abandoned Factory. Not one to be discouraged she then decides to wander around town and heads off. At the factory Maki complements Mark's graffiti, then Nanjo points out that even though Mark hangs around the place all the time, he never noticed SEBEC's activity.
After Mark proves how SMRT he is the group finds Ayase hiding behind a barrel. She says that she barely got out alive since apparently St Hermelin wasn't as safe as they first thought. According to her the whole damn place is just gone. Nanjo speculates that the school vanished due to the effects of the Deva system and that once Kandori is stopped, St Hermelin should pop back up in short order. Ayase wants to come along, but of course the group refuses so she tells them to go to hell before storming off. But yeah at this point the group doesn't even know if Ayase has a Persona or not, she clearly doesn't have a lot of combat experience so she could be a liability if they took her along. So the Scooby Gang finds the entrance to the abandoned factory and try to find Kandori. I only have two piece of advice for this section, first; once you complete a dungeon you can't go back, so be sure to save often when you find the save points and open every chest you come across, two, if you come across a Yakuza demon, get its Spell Card, it will save you an insane amount of trouble later if you are trying to get every spell card in the game. Why should you? Because you will get a very special Totem for doing so that will allow you to summon an incredibly powerful Persona. So after fighting your way to the top of the SEBEC building you finally encounter Kandori. But before you head in you hear Kandori's Bodyguard apologizing for letting a woman (Most likely Setsuko) escape but all Kandori is concerned with is making sure that his scientists finish adjusting the Deva System. The group busts in but Kandori just sends his bodyguard Takeda and some goons on them to cover his escape, but not before Kandori reveals his Persona, Nyarlathotep of the Tower Arcana.
An Outer god of H.P Lovecraft's Cthulhu Mythos, Nyarlathotep is known as "The Crawling Chaos", "The Faceless God", "Black Pharaoh" and the "Stalker of the Stars".
Once he delivers a taste of his power Kandori runs off leaving Naorin and his group to deal with Takeda, his goons and his own Persona. The goons should be no problem, just use attacks that hit multiple targets to get rid of them quickly, Takeda can be a problem with his guns and his Delyte skill, which can cause area wide blindness, just use Ice and Earth attacks to end the battle faster, but make sure you have plenty of revival beads with you because this can get nasty. Once the muscle is done for the gang looks for Kandori's secret door while Maki wonders where she's seen him before. Before you press the button near Kandori's desk, check the closet to find a new sword for Nanjo. Once the group finally makes it to the Deva system chamber Kandori is talking with the Deva systems creator; Dr Nikolai who is trying desperately to convince Kandori to stop all of this. Kandori's response goes something like this.
Even if it means throwing people into the dimensional rift created by the Deva System. Like a certain high school boy that seemed pretty determined to stop Kandori for some reason, but eh that probably isn't important, he's most likely dead now anyway, no need to give him a second thought no siree. Anyway the group manages to get inside but Kandori just ignores them, taking the Doctor with him inside the Deva System itself. Maki seems to vaguely remember the Deva system for some reason, but before she can remember where; the system starts to cause tremors. It turns out that Nikolai pulled a fast one on Kandori and has set the device to take the both of them out by reducing them both to Atoms. Kandori screams for someone to stop the machine, but of course the group doesn't know how. Maki mysteriously says that the blue button on the console will increase the output, but the red button is the emergency stop button (I'm guessing Dr Nikolai likes his devices to be idiot proof). Mark says they should press the red button to stop the machine. That way the group can stop Kandori themselves and save the Doctor. Nanjo on the other hand says to respect Dr Nikolai's wishes and press the blue button and take Kandori, the Doctor and the Deva System out at once. Naorin takes the more humane route and presses the red button to stop the Deva System, however the system doesn't stop and even worse Kandori starts to re-materialize before the entire area is surrounded by a bright white light. When the light subsides a little girl pops up in front of the Deva System saying how she won't let the group kill her "Daddy".
This is Aki, and oh boy are we going to hate her later.
Yeah this little girl turns out to be Kandori's trump card, Kandori then orders Aki to take him back to her world and she does so accidentally taking the group with her. After being teleported to a school gym the group starts to wake up after being knocked out from the teleportation. Once everyone is up Mark points out that they've been transported to their old school gym before it was torn down 6 months ago. But before the group can figure out what's going on they're informed that Yosuke got seriously injured, with that Maki rushed off to see what happened with Nanjo, Mark and Naorin not too far behind. So with that we'll explore this strange, brave new world next time.

Please be sure to read, comment, spread the links, re-tweet and follow me on Twitter @OnDavidsBrain! and support me on Patreon.

Shin Megami Tensai Persona is owned by Atlus and Sega.
Naked Gun 331/3: The Final Insult is owned by Jim Abrahams Jerry and David Zucker, and Paramount Pictures
Sesame Street is owned by PBS, Sesame Workshop and Warner Home Video.
Nostalgia Critic is owned by Doug Walker, Channel Awesome,, and The Walt Disney Company

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Video Game Review: Persona Retrospective: Persona (PSP) Part 4: Absolutly Flawless

So our heroes fight their way though the streets, fighting demons along the way. After they spend time at the casino playing games, picking up the Totems for later and creating two saves (one is for preparation for the Ice Queen Quest which I will cover after the main quest) they finally get to the shrine where they start to look for Maki's mo.... hey look a butterfly! Our heroes everyone, distracted by shiny Bug Pokemon when they should be looking for critically injured people! Yukino asks the obviously silly question about how there might be something off about the Butterfly. Gee let's think here, a golden butterfly just magically materialized out of nowhere while the streets of your town are being flooded by demons. Lady, I think that a golden Beautifly popping out of nowhere is the least weirdest thing you've seen today! They start to trip out and meet Philemon again.
After that bit of foreshadowing the gang finds Maki's mom RIGHT NEXT TO THEM! Hey um quick question, when the demons showed up did everyone else lose all sense of Peripheral Vision?!
"Maki's mother Setsuko Sonomura. She works at SEBEC as an engineering specialist."
 Setsuko tells the group that she took a bullet wound after being shot at by Kandori's goons. She also says that he's the one responsible for the changes done to the town and that she was involved in creating a device that is responsible, the DEVA System. It was designed to affect reality but she had no idea it would get this bad. Hang on, something with the power to warp and rewrite reality goes out of control and the whole world is twisted upside down?
Nah. That would just be stupid.
 Setsuko says that Kandori gives absolutely no shits about what he's doing. She wants to go to the police and tell them what is going on, but aside from them dismissing her because it sounds like several flavors of crazy; the police station is a no go anyway since Elly came from there before meeting up with the gang at the hospital and according to her the place is already taken over by demons. Mark asks Setsuko how she escaped, she says she got out through a secret freight entrance in the abandoned factory next door. She then gives the group her security card before passing out. The group then splits up with Mark and Nanjo heading off to the factory while Naorin, Elly and Yukino take Setsuko back to the school to recover. After Elly gives a really dumb password Ms Saeko shows up to help get Setsuko to the Nurses office, she tells Elly and Yukino to help Ayase and Yuko plug up the hole in the wall near the gym's passageway.
Oh right I forgot to mention Yuko Himeno, long story short she's Maki's best friend and dirt poor. As for her character, just remember Pre-Chunin exam Hinata from Naruto and you're good.

 After Setsuko fills Saeko in on what happened she tells Naorin to go by the hole and ask Yukino and the others to not fill up the hole since she thinks that Mark and Nanjo might come back. Now before you do anything make sure you talk to everyone and go to the sports club rooms to collect some new weapons and gear for your team. Once you tell Yuka that you're off to attack SEBEC Maki shows up! Wait what? And for some reason she seems more perky and optimistic then when you saw her in the hospital. As in she's well enough to move of her own accord. Even Ayase knows that something stinks like dead fish and responds accordingly.
 Ayase thinks this Maki is a demon in disguise. Yuko doesn't think so because she has Maki's favorite compact mirror around her neck. "Maki" wonders if something is different with Yuko, but before we get any answers Nanjo shows up and says that Mark was captured by demons at the police station when he was trying to get some weapons. Nanjo managed to escape with some guns to get help since Mark still has the security card (otherwise he would have just left his ass there to get munched on by demons, great guy huh?) Once outside Maki asks what a police station is, and no she's not joking because even after being told by Nanjo what it is she still has no idea what the hell he's talking about. Even more warning flags are raised since Maki asked when the gym was renovated and Nanjo replies when she was hospitalized and Maki says she's never been in a hospital. Just as the group is about to head out a demon attacks, Maki then summons her Persona, Maso of the Priestess Arcana.
Based off of Mazu or Matsu, a Chinese Goddess of the Sea that protects fishermen and sailors from its many dangers.
Once that's all taken care of it's time for a jailbreak. The trio gets to the station and finds that the place is trashed; but they find a key to the prison cells and haul ass over there. Once there they find not only Mark but Brown locked up as well. Apparently he had the same idea and came to the station to get some weapons but got caught too, the police lieutenant shows up but it turns out to be a demon in disguise and sends zombie cops after the group. Brown is speechless after the others kill the zombies with their Personas. Just as the Demon Lieutenant is about to kill Brown he summons his own Persona, Nemhain of the Justice Arcana.
Along with Badb Catha and Macha, Nemhain was part of a trio of goddesses that represented various aspects of the goddess Morrigan. Nemhain represented the state of frenzy and panic and often created such feelings in armies, causing those of such states to attack both allies and enemies in rage.
With the demons gone Mark gets Brown up to speed, then he gives Naorin the access card and rejoins the group. Now with four permanent party members we need to discuss the potential fifth member, in the main quest you can choose who will be in your party as the fifth member between Brown, Ayase, Elly and Reiji. Be careful though, once you choose one, you're stuck with him/her, and Yukino is only available in the Ice Queen Quest. But the one you will really want to get is Reiji. Why? Because not only will he have exclusive access to certain Personas, have negotiation skills that work on almost every demon, has some actual relevance to the plot and (most importantly) can only be obtained as a party member in the SEBEC story that's the one we're going to aim for, if you've been following my reviews and wondering why I've been pointing out those Reiji parts, this is why. If you don't want Reiji my second best choice would be Elly since she has similar points to Reiji like the compatibility with certain Personas but also because you can choose her to be a Party member in Persona 2: Eternal Punishment and well, continuity and all that. But don't worry, you can still play with Brown, Ayase and Elly as party members in the Snow Queen Quest, along with Yukino. So for now when Brown offers his services just say no. With that Brown heads back to the school while we head off to a certain room.
Welcome to the Velvet Room.
 This is where you can create new Personas with the help of some of Philemon's servants. The first is called Nameless.
He plays the piano to open the doors of the heart. Since music is the language of the soul as it were.
Next is Nameless' partner Belladonna.
Her singing accompanies Nameless' music. She covers her ears while she sings.
The last is the one who handles the fusions themselves and the one character that appears in almost every game in the Persona Franchise, Igor.
Yeah because THIS GUY looks trustworthy eh?
Though these three; Personas can be drawn from the collective unconsciousness to aid those who are either directly chosen by the trio's master, or those who are bound by a contract when they are granted a certain power will be covered MUCH later. The purpose of the Velvet Room is to aid their guests by honing their power through creating more powerful Personas. Now to give the bare basics of how the Room works here, Igor will show you a list of potential Personas that can be fused from the Spell Cards obtained by negotiating with demons. Then by selecting the Persona you want and which cards you want to fuse to create it (you can also add an item from your stock to give your Persona a power boost or skill it couldn't normally know depending on what item you use in the fusion) all Igor has to do is use his special Bone Phone and voila new Persona. Also certain Personas can only be created by adding in a Totem Item into the item select. But the exclusive Persona can only be summoned by a fusion that would result in their Arcana. Remember that you can only create Personas that are at most Ten levels above you and can only equip them once the characters Persona level matches theirs.  The Persona list will tell you what characters work better with what Persona based on their Affinities.
Best - If the appropriate conditions are set, it may activate its Unknown Power.
Good - Can be equipped and used, but its Unknown Power will not be activated.
Bad - Can be equipped but not used in battle. Healing and support skills can still be used outside of battle via the menu.
Worst - Cannot be equipped.
 As you would assume, the party members have a "Best" affinity with their original Arcana, Naorin with the Emperor, Nanjo and the Hierophant, Maki with the Priestess you get the idea, however each of them has a second Arcana that also gives them "Best". I personally only bother to equip my party with Personas that have a "Best" affinity since they will level up their rank faster. Igor can also store away up to 16 extra Personas to swap out with the three each of the five characters can equip. You can also have Igor delete any Persona you want which will give you an item if you delete it once its Rank is maxed. Anything else you want to know, you can just ask Igor. Now listen to the sounds of the Velvet Room before we come back next time where we start the attack on SEBEC.

Please be sure to read, comment, spread the links, re-tweet and follow me on Twitter @OnDavidsBrain! and support me on Patreon.

Shin Megami Tensai Persona is owned by Atlus and Sega.
The X-Men are owned by Marvel Comics, The Walt Disney Company, Stan Lee and Jack Kirby.
Yugioh is owned by Konami, Kazuki Takahashi, Toei Animation, Shonen Jump and Viz Media.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Video Game Review: Persona Retrospective: Persona (PSP) Part 3: Live long and prosper

Leonard Nimoy
March 26 1931- February 27th 2015
Previously on the Persona retrospective. Some High School kids got struck by lightning, they somehow survived without any brain damage, we meet several characters, one of which might cause those with apophenia to go completely ape, our gang then goes around town looking for the Fonze before finally meeting their friend at the hospital, and after causing her to have an episode about her workaholic bitch of a mother this happens.

SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO y-yeah, bit of a day. But hey at least it can't get any worse then this. Then things immediately get worse then the gang finds out that monsters have started showing up.
Close, but not quite as random or insane.
No no, this is relatively more mundane, it's just zombies who viciously attacked Yamaoka who was saving a nurse from them. Mark is naturally bewildered by the zombies while Nanjo attacks them for what they did to Yamaoka. When the zombies attacked, Naorin discovers his power that was granted to him by Philemon, his Persona, Seimen Kongou of the Emperor Arcana.
A Rakshasa of Hindu lore and a guardian deity of Japanese Buddhism, he was originally a monster who spread various diseases and plagues before changing his ways to cure the diseases that he once helped spread.
His new power was easily able to destroy a zombie as the other members of the group in turn awaken their Personas. Mark's Persona is Ogun of the Chariot Arcana.
A god of steal and iron from the Yoruba people of Nigeria, Ogun was the one to show man how to forge steel and iron into tools.
Yukino then gains Vesta of the Empress Arcana.
The Roman goddess of the Hearth, Virginity and Sexuality.
And finally Nanjo gains the power of Aizen Myouou of the Hierophant Arcana.
In Japanese Buddhism; Aizen Myouou is one of the Vidyaraja or "Great Wisdom Kings". He represents when Lust becomes enlightenment and Passionate love becomes compassion for all living things.
Once the zombies are dealt with; Nanjo rushes to Yamaoka's side, desperately begging his father figure not to die. Yamaoka, with his last breath asks his Master to promise him to become the number 1 man in the country and carry Japan on his back. Nanjo makes that promise before Yamaoka dies in front of him.
While Nanjo grieves Mark, Yukino and Naorin discuss what just happened. They at least come to the conclusion that the power they just used isn't hostile so it should be safe to use. Once they leave the room we get our first real fight where we'll discuss the battle controls.
"Now, shed your preconceptions, lay your young mind bare as I, as you teacher lovingly embrace you with wondrous knowledge"
For the love of, GET THE HELL OUT OF HERE ASS-CLOWN! Someone call Chris Hanson and tell him we have a live one here. Ugh, anyway the combat system. From the menu you can use the up and down directional pads to scroll and the X button to select an action. Fight lets you choose a characters combat actions; from using a Persona skill, using your personal weapon, using your gun using items or switching to another Persona in your stock (we'll get to that later) and guard which is pretty self explanatory.

Take note however that your weapons, guns and some Personas skills can only hit enemies in their range, but you can change your characters formation (thus giving you more attacking options) by choosing a character formation from the Form action. This lets your characters switch between four of your own customized formations that you can set up outside of combat. Free tip, try to wait until you have a full party to create formations as it will give you time to learn how each of their individual weapons work, also try to create two formations, one where your party is all on the left side and another where everyone is on the right, because some enemies have attacks that work on the party members directly in front of them in about three or four rows. However be warned, switching formation wastes a characters turn if their position changes from the original formation that they entered combat with.

Next is the contact button which lets you talk to demons, this is important as talking to demons and getting their spell cards is the only way to get new Personas in this game, you can have about 12 spell cards on you before you either use them or lose them. Now talking with demons is a whole other mess entirely, once you've completed a negotiation with them and get a card, the battle ends with no EXP or Yen earned, that's not that much of a problem if you just take the other enemies out first before you talk to your target demon. Each of the characters have four conversation techniques that each affects demons in one of four ways, there's "Happy" in orange which when maxed will make the demon give you something, whether it be Yen, EXP or a item, "Scared" in blue which will make the demon run away, "Anger" in red which will not only make sure the demon sticks around but it will also try to intimidate you which might hit you with a status effect, and last but not least is "Eager" in yellow which you should be aiming for with every new demon you encounter because once it's maxed you can ask it to give you their spell card. Once you have a demons spell card if you talk to them again while you still have it they will not only leave the battle but they may also give you an item or Yen. However you can't get the spell cards of demons that are higher level then you so be careful.

I know that there are some people out there that are thinking "hey, maybe I can just go through the game gathering spell cards and not actually fight the demons" yeah, free tip, DON'T! Not only are there demons that don't give up spell cards but sometimes an action that makes a demon eager can also get them moving toward another emotion without warning, not only that but the escape option at the bottom of the select screen barely works, meaning you'll have wasted a turn trying to run away and subsequently get flattened. But most importantly if you don't level up, the bosses will just flat out steamroll you. Making matters worse, all demons have various personalities that can make negotiations even more difficult, fortunately here's a link to a guide that will help you with demon negotiations 90% of the time.

Then there's the Analyze button, which lets you look at the stats, strengths and weaknesses of demons that you've defeated before. Be careful however as some demons have hidden weakness and strengths against attacks that aren't listed. You can analyze easier by just pressing the right trigger and the left trigger lets you see your parties conditions. Lastly is Auto, which lets you set your party to automatically use one action, or just use the actions you took last turn with repeat, be careful however because if you use repeat, it may not target the same enemy you selected last time if you used any attacks that hit an individual target if an enemy is within the targets range of the spell itself it can be rotated between targets.

Now for the biggest problem I have with this game, the EXP system. Remember in Final Fantasy 8 where the party member that dealt the last blow to an enemy gets more EXP? Well here it's worse, EXP is dealt between your party members on how effective they were in combat, so if a character does nothing but guard during the fight they'll get a minuscule amount of EXP compared to the others, also there are actually two levels that your characters have, your characters level and their Persona level, Personas will get less EXP if the enemies are finished off with weapons or firearms. The reverse is true if the enemies are killed by the Persona's skills. But you can solve this by just grinding.

There are some points in the game where after you clear a story event everyone will gain EXP to match that of the MC so keep that in mind. Once you level up, your characters will gain a stat boost in one of five attributes, Strength, Vitality, Dexterity, Agility, and Luck. As characters level up they will boost their own stats with three stat points that they will assign themselves, the MC however is up to you. So you can give one point to three stats, put two point into one while giving the last one to another stat, or pour all three points into one stat. The choice is yours, though personally I try to keep my stats equal, once that is done I tend to pour all three points into one attribute at a time.

Now that that is all taken care of we can finally get back to the story. While you are wandering around the renovated hospital, be sure to check inside of every room you come across as some have equipment you will definitely need. By talking to your party members and the hospital staff you find, you'll learn that Maki is still stuck in ICU and that Nanjo is pretty damn shaken up after Yamaoka's death. Once you reach the reception area Yukino will find a Nurse that is still alive but trapped under a vending machine, Nanjo however says that you don't have time and to just leave her behind. The situation is made even worse because Mark says the demons are still in hot pursuit. Even the nurse is telling you to just leave her and run.

No matter what your choice is the demons will still show up (though you should help her, as it will be important much, much, MUCH later) Elly will show up to help you fend off the demons. And it just so happens that she has a Persona as well, Nike of the Judgement Arcana.
The Greek Goddess of Victory as well as the archetypal portrayal of Christian angels.
Elly is naturally flummoxed by this, and after being brought back to her senses by Yukino she actually thinks that she has become Nike given that whole "I am thou, thou art I" shtick, until Mark tells her that the rest of the group can summon Personas too. Nanjo asks if she had the dream about the Butterfly, and she says yes confirming to him that those that have the dream are granted the power of Persona. Elly explains that not only are there demons outside of the hospital but a barrier has been erected around the town so escape is impossible and the only safe area is inside the school. Yukino suggests heading back but Elly says to head to the Shrine first since Maki's mother was hurt and collapsed there.

Before you do however head back to the SEBEC building to see Reiji try to threaten his way inside. But before he can be made into Swiss Cheese by the heavily armed thugs with very itchy trigger fingers Mark gets him out of there. Where Reiji just storms off again. Speaking of leaving I think this is where I'll call it quits for now. Now that all of the boring tutorial stuff is done we can finally focus on the story itself.

Please be sure to read, comment, spread the links, re-tweet and follow me on Twitter @OnDavidsBrain! and support me on Patreon.

Shin Megami Tensai Persona is owned by Atlus and Sega.
Star Trek 2 The Wrath of Khan is owned  by Paramount Studios and Gene Roddenberry.
Cabin Boy is owned by Touchstone Pictures, Buena Vista Pictures and Walt Disney Pictures.
Kill La Kill is owned by Studio Trigger, Hiroyuki Imaishi, Kazuki Nakashima and Aniplex of America.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Video Game Review: Persona Retrospective: Persona (PSP) Part 2: Worldview time!

Sorry about the delay folks, back to business. After Philemon sends you back to your body Nanjo, Mark and Yukino wake you up in the Nurse's office talking about how they all had the same dream. Once you get up the gang's homeroom teacher shows up to see if everyone is okay.

This is Saeko Takami
 She is one of the more popular teachers at St Hermelin school for her fairness with the students. She was also the one who helped Yukino reform her Yanki ways. She tells the four to head for the hospital and then straight home because, well when you get struck by lightning and survive, well that might raise an eyebrow or two. The nurse mentions that while the gang is at the hospital they should check in on their friend Maki Sonomura who has been there for about a year. But before you do be sure to check out the school for more characters that will show up later and to set up events to recruit the hardest of your fifth party member choices. Head to the teachers lounge to not only catch up on Elly and Ayase but to also talk to the man in the brown coat who tells you that they have seen someone walking into an open classroom on the second floor and he thinks that it might be you. So go upstairs to investigate in room 2-7. Once inside we see this rather shirtless gentleman.
Meet our Fonzie stand-in.
This is Reiji Kido, he transferred to St Hermelin 6 months ago when a building belonging to a company called SEBEC finished being constructed. As Nanjo astutely points out, Reiji is not one for being social as he storms off without a word. As you continue exploring the school head into the Home EC room to hear a conversation about a guy named Yosuke who supposedly ran off with his girlfriend Chisato two months ago.
Not yet, not yet.
Anyway head to the cafeteria to meet another student who will come into play later who claims to have had a dream about the girl that appeared before Naoya's group.
This is Kenta Yokouchi AKA Toro
He will be somewhat relevant later and one of my pieces of evidence in my case against Ayase. Continue to class 2-1 and talk to the guy next to Mark, he'll ask if derelict buildings should be torn down as they only attract hooligans. Mark snickers at him using the term hooligans, now on the one hand I have to agree with Mark chuckling about the vocabulary choice as no high schooler uses the term "Hooligan" unless A, they're trying to sound smart on a report, or B, are pretentious little pit-stains, I'd go more towards door #2 in this case. But on the other hand Mark, he does have a point.
Trust me.
I'll follow you on twitter if you get the reference here. After talking with (Insert Political punching bag here) Jr we meet a girl named Yuko Himino in room 2-4 who asks you to tell Maki that she'll giveback the book she lent her called "Gate to Paradise" the next time she visits Maki in the hospital. Hmmmmm a story about the Children's Crusade of 1212 trying to reach the holy land with the themes of idealistic naivete vs cynicism and moral corruption of those in power? Odd reading choice, eh must have a lot of time on her hands what with her being cooped up in the hospital and all, though personally I'd just watch the movie. After Nanjo proves that he knows as much about poverty and subtly as he does about the mating habits of Narwhals,
we then move on to the first floor hallway to meet with this obviously evil looking piece of work.
Does this guy not look like a Bond Villain?
This is Vice-Principal Hanya, and in terms of likability I'd say he's, oooooooooh about as likable as Snow from FF XIII.But more on him much later, for now continue exploring until you come across the fencing club room. Here we find someone that will cause some people to have worse headaches then those who try to find every piece of media connected to the Tommy Westphall universe.
This is Tamaki Uchida
 In this game she's a transfer student. What happened in her last school? Well for that play Shin Megami Tensai: if where she was the cannon Protagonist. Yeah apparently if was the progenitor to the Persona continuity but with this one reference along with another that appears next game it will start a domino effect that will drive certain people to try and figure out how each of the Mega Ten games, series and continuities all take place in the same universe, or try and create some Zelda timeline crap, trust me it has the potential to be even more confusing then the Toei continuity and Hypertime. Now for those of you who want to see how Tamaki got here, tough luck for those outside of Japan cause guess what? It never released outside of Japan. Now from that pile of potential mind-breaking we meet the guy that Tamaki is arguing with.
This is Tadashi Satomi
This is a self insert of the actual scenario writer of the same name. Now this caused some controversy among the fans because Tamaki is modeled after a Actress/ Pop Idol that Tadashi liked at the time and basically made these two characters to act out his own fan fiction.

Needless to say the idol's fans and the games fans were not particularly happy with this decision, but personally I don't really care I just had to put this in because if I don't mention it somebody else most likely will. Needless to say Stan Lee is ashamed.
I see you True Believers, I see everythiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiing.
As the group finally starts to leave the school we meet Nanjo's butler/Surrogate Father Yamaoka.
I'll be there in a second Master Wayne
After inadvertently being embarrassed by Yamaoka's over attentiveness Nanjo insists that the group heads off to the Hospital, but first they group heads to the Judgement 1999 casino in the Joy Luck mall. Inside they encounter members of Mark's crew the Tailors who tell their boss that there were reportings of a guy with a scar in his face hanging around the abandoned warehouse that they use to practice their Graffiti. They head over to find Reiji who tells them that if they keep hanging around there they'll die and walks off. Heading back to Joy Street they meet Reiji's mom at Yin and Yan. She recognizes them as students of St Hermelin and asks if they know Reiji. She then asks them if they'll be friends with Reiji to help him and his lack of social skills and Naoya agrees before setting off again. The group then heads to The SEBEC building where a man named Takeda threatens to toss them out on their asses until his boss walks out of an elevator, the President of the Mikage-Cho branch, Takahisa Kandori.
After Kandori challenges Nanjo's title of "Most condescending Character in Persona" the gang finally heads to the hospital where Mark surprisingly knows exactly where Maki's room is. Why, well....

 Well okay not exactly that but it's pretty damn clear that Mark likes her enough to visit her very week. Near the hospital entrance, Yamaoka is hiding behind a vending machine/ Easter egg overjoyed that Nanjo actually has friends. I know the feeling, I honestly thought the guy would end up as another rich kid character with parental issues. But at least he doesn't have a dragon shaped jet-plane (yet). Here we finally meet Maki Sonomura.
She seems nice.
She thanks Mark for bringing Naoya, Nanjo and Yukino with him like he promised. After she had an outburst about her displeasure towards her workaholic mother she collapses and is imminently rushed to ICU, where we will pick up next time.

Please be sure to read, comment, spread the links, re-tweet and follow me on Twitter @OnDavidsBrain! and support me on Patreon.

Shin Megami Tensai Persona is owned by Atlus and Sega.
Miami Vice is owned by Michael Mann, Anthony Yerkovitch, Dick Wolf, Michael Mann Productions in association with Universal Television and NBC Universal Television Distribution.
Jojo's Bizarre Adventure is propriety of Hirohiko Araki, David Production, Tokyo MX, Warner Bros Entertainment and Viz Media.
Jojo's Bizarre Adventure Abridged is propriety of Anthony Sardinha AKA Antfish and Team Four Star.
"Narwhals" is owned by Johnathan "Jonti" Picking.
Star Trek The Next Generation is owned by Gene Roddenberry, Paramount Domestic Television, and CBS Television Distrobution.
The Simpsons are owned by Matt Groening, Gracie Films, and 20th Century Fox Television.