hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts

First Look: Persona 3 Portable

10:00 AM on 03.01.2010 // Dale North
  @DaleNorth

Atlus was nice enough to stop by Destructoid HQ to give us a first look at their progress on a the portable version of a game they already know I love: Persona 3. Persona 3 Portable came out in Japan not too long ago, and it seems like the localization process started not too long after. From what I could tell from the build Atlus brought, it seems like they're right on track for the July 6th release. Good to see.

I got to see some of of the changes in the console version as well as check out some of the key story scenes featuring the female protagonist. That's right: if you haven't heard, you'll be able to replay Persona 3 as a girl this time.

Read on to check out some of the changes you can expect in Persona 3 Portable.

First off, let's talk about the technical changes. The PSP game will support installation to Memory Stick to dramatically reduce load times. The game is already fast, but this will make it even faster.

The new navigation cuts out walking in favor of a highlight spot that you use to select interaction points. Using either the analog nub or the d-pad, you just point to a person or object to interact. Hitting the R button toggles a hot spot indicator. While I kind of enjoyed the on-foot exploration, I like how this method is a bit faster. If you've played this game a couple of times, you'll also likely enjoy getting to the point a bit faster. On top of that, this method of navigation seems to make more sense for the portable screen size and the lack of a second analog control stick assigned to camera control.

As far as the game itself, there are plenty of changes, but I think you'll agree after reading this that they're almost all for the better.

Here are the big things: The dialogue is different as a girl, naturally. Along with this comes brand new Social Link opportunities, this time with the boys. You also have full control over your party now. There's now part-time jobs you can take, just like in Persona 4. For all the aesthetic changes you might think you're going to miss, there's significant game play improvements. I'd take more save spots over a 2 minute anime clip any day.

The cutscenes are no longer animated. Before you get too upset, think about it. It makes sense. With two choices for main characters, there would need to be double the cutscenes, with the female set requiring a full reworking. Another issue is size, as double the cutscenes would require double the storage space. Know that elements, like art and stills, have been taken from the cutscenes and are used in story segments, so you may not miss the full movies as much. Watching one early scene that takes place before the first key battle, I had to be reminded about how different it was in the original. The original had much more going on, but I honestly didn't miss it or even realize it until I was reminded.

One thing Persona 3 players had concern with is the fatigue model. It has been redone in P3P, working closer to that of Persona 4. You'll get tired less often, which means less retreating. Save spots are also far more plentiful, so you don't find yourself flinging your PSP against a wall after losing 5 floors of progress to an untimely death.

The menu looks a bit different now. There are slight tweaks, and if you're playing as a girl, everything's pink.

As far as the sound goes, there's new music. The score is a sort of upgrade, consisting of both new tunes and some remixes of old ones. I was also told that there is a lot of new recorded voice for the game, so look forward to that.

The only other change I can think of that's of note is that "The Answer" chapter from Persona 3: FES is not included in P3P. Game play enhancements and tweaks that came with FES are included, though.

Assuming you've played either Persona 3, know that I was able to check out the section of the game right after the intro, getting into the part right before the protagonist receives their power. At this stage of localization, the text was in English, but the voices were still in Japanese. They've still got a couple of months to go on this.

Even around this stage, early on, I was able to see the differences in how relations shift with a female as the main character. Just before the very first charge into battle, Junpei sounds a bit different than he did with a male protagonist assigned. For example, he sounds cautious of a female taking lead in this first battle, remarking that she's "just a girl."

Even early on, Junpei seems to show some interest in the main character. He's warming up to her, it seems. In the end, just about all of the game's major male characters will be "available." Heck, there's even a change in the Velvet Room for the girl side of the game. Get this: you can even have a relationship with Ken, the youngest main character in the game. I'm not judging you if you want to go that route.

I was able to see Yukari's budding relationship with the female protagonist as well. Yukari shares more as a friend, and relates in a totally different way than before with a male protagonist. The dynamic is totally different now. For example, in an early scene where the main character is being visited in the hospital, Yukari says, "Us second year girls have to stick up for each other after all."

As far as game play goes, I got to poke around in a few battles in different stages in the game. In the first battle, I got to hear the new battle music. It's no "Mass Destruction," but I still love it. Shuffle Time also changed, and seems a bit more like Persona 4's version. Later, I got to use Atlus' debug save file to battle in Tatarus, with all characters at max level, 999 hit points. Everything was one-hit kills. Good times. Controls were snappy and the loading was fast. Best of all, the game translates very well to the PSP's screen. In fact, the PSP's screen flatters the game a bit. At the time, the female protagonist's equipped armor was called Battle Panties.

I forgot how much I love this game.

Sure, it's smaller, but this is Persona 3 at its best and most enhanced form. It takes every improvement from Persona 3: FES and Persona 4, adds a female protagonist, many new story elements and social links, and sticks it in your pocket. What else do you even need?

Persona 3 Portable will be released on July 6th for $39.99.



Dale North, Former Dtoid EIC
 Follow Blog + disclosure DaleNorth Tips
I am Destructoid's Editor-In-Chief. I love corgis. I make music. more   |   staff directory

 Setup email comments

Unsavory comments? Please report harassment, spam, and hate speech to our moderators, and flag the user (we will ban users dishing bad karma). Can't see comments? Apps like Avast or browser extensions can cause it. You can fix it by adding *.disqus.com to your whitelists.

 Quickposts
Status updates from C-bloggers

Rad Party God avatarRad Party God
*sigh* If only Disqus had a "block/ignore user" option :/
VIRGO avatarVIRGO
Must. Use. This. Blog. More. But. School.
GoofierBrute avatarGoofierBrute
Just started playing Hyrule Warriors again. Man is that game fun. A bit mindless at times granted, but fun nonetheless.
RadicalYoseph avatarRadicalYoseph
I ate vanilla ice cream and didn't put on any chocolate syrup. Now wondering if that was racist whitewashing #thanksjed.
Jiraya avatarJiraya
The cat dragged in some action figures !
[img]http://i.imgur.com/6Cu2Asg.jpg[/img] [img]http://i.imgur.com/qMFDAw3.jpg[/img] [img]http://i.imgur.com/RPUraY8.jpg[/img] [img]http://i.imgur.com/51DLqjh.jpg[/img]
Dr Mel avatarDr Mel
There's a Custom Soundtrack folder in MGSV. I can't think of a better thing to put there than the old episodes of podtoid I've been running through lately. I'll be fultoning guys and Holmes will be puttin' on mesh tank tops. Perfect.
Shinta avatarShinta
MGSV Pro Tip: Turn your brightness down to 0. It actually makes the view distance for the guards correct, and doesn't make nighttime the best option for you every single time. When guards shoot flares in the sky, the lighting looks like Dragon's Dogma.
Pixie The Fairy avatarPixie The Fairy
Proof I listened to too much Weird Al growing up: I really do hear "Living in America" as "Living with a Hernia."
Nic Rowen avatarNic Rowen
I've been playing a shit ton of Heroes of the Storm recently. It's my first MOBA and I'm SHOCKED at how much fun I'm having. Anyone else into it? Would love to get some games in with Dtoiders.
Script avatarScript
I would wait for a chance to play the game by myself, but I just have to know. Is David Hayter in MGS V in any way? Please no spoilers.
Rad Party God avatarRad Party God
Guys, serious question... How can I make D-Horse to poop?
gajknight avatargajknight
Goddammit @ FullmetalJ, you have poisoned my mind with...whatever the hell this is.[youtube]https://youtu.be/wv0iUKb80C8[/youtube] It's so, so catchy. Go suck a baguette. And thanks :3. Yes I have listened to all of it.
Niero Desu avatarNiero Desu
That time when Mr. Destructoid went to Vegas [img]http://i.imgur.com/hYEQG7z.jpg[/img]
SirDavies avatarSirDavies
As someone who hasn't played the MGS series at all, should I play it by release date or story order?
Vuster avatarVuster
Been watching a good friend play the Metal Gear game on twitch soon. I will say I can understand the appeal 100% and Kojima knows how to make a great piece of work. I think will hold off on a new pc and get this if this keeps up!
FlanxLycanth avatarFlanxLycanth
So I can plug any headphones I want into my PS4 controller. If said headphones have a mic, will it work in chat?
ScreamAid avatarScreamAid
Gee whilikers, guys. I might just explain where I've been and what I've been up to while I've been gone. That'd be a good topic for a c-blog getting me whipped back into shape, right? I'ma try to write more, so expect more of me in the future!
bloma avatarbloma
Just bought Fez for xbox 360. Playing it on my 58 inch plasma. What a beautiful game.
OrochiLeona avatarOrochiLeona
So there's a chance more MKX characters are being revealed today. Now, I'm not saying you *should* cross your fingers and say a prayer for me to get my waifu Sindel just, y'know, it would be monstrous of you to make me cry with your lack of love & support
StriderHoang avatarStriderHoang
Just so you know, I've been a Huge subscriber for a few years but I thought I had until the end of September to cancel it. So I've opened an inquiry for the refund, which is on tinypass' end of things by the way.
more quickposts


Contest!


Seriously

Invert site colors

  Dark Theme
  Light Theme


Destructoid means family.
Living the dream, since 2006

Pssst. konami code + enter

modernmethod logo



Back to Top


We follow moms on   Facebook  and   Twitter
  Light Theme      Dark Theme
Pssst. Konami Code + Enter!
You may remix stuff our site under creative commons w/@
- Destructoid means family. Living the dream, since 2006 -