Note: iOS 9 + Facebook users w/ trouble scrolling: #super sorry# we hope to fix it asap. In the meantime Chrome Mobile is a reach around
hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts

Shin Megami Tensei IV

Very quick tips guide for Shin Megami Tensei IV

9:00 AM on 07.16.2013 // Chris Carter

Beyond Borroughs

Shin Megami Tensei IV is without a doubt a Shin Megami Tensei game. What do I mean by that? Well, it has a pretty steep learning curve that hits hard and fast very early, and unless you're a JRPG fan at heart, it can get a little discouraging -- very discouraging.

Having said that, the game does have a pretty extensive tutorial system, but for everything else and in-between, read on for some helpful hints on how to conquer your inner demon.

Warning -- although the basic tips section contains no spoilers, the second portion of this article contains one massive plot spoiler -- I'll warn you again after the basic section.

Basic tips:

  • It goes without saying that grinding is king in JRPGs, and that's completely applicable here. With your ever-shifting and evolving party of demons, one thing remains constant -- the protagonist. Your main character is always a part of the action, and leveling up his spells (through leveling up demons and giving him your powers) is key to success. Keep in mind that your hero can re-summon demons at will during battle when they're knocked out, whereas demons can typically only "sub" themselves out for another (although there are spells that allow demons to summon one another).
  • It's possible to "juke" (avoid) enemy encounters with some fancy footwork while roaming about the world. The easiest creatures to avoid are the humanoids, and the best way to do this is to move one way, then quickly dodge to the opposite direction. You are slightly faster than the vast majority of the game's enemies, so run in a straight line and you'll be okay. That said, this is a JRPG, so more encounters = more experience, which will make later bosses easier to deal with, so don't avoid everything.
  • Thankfully, this isn't one of those SMT games where if the main protagonist dies, it's game over. Instead, you can keep fighting with your demon crew, so I suggest you give one of your demons the ability to use items (it's a passive skill you earn, usually with fairies) -- that way they can resurrect the main character if he falls in battle, who can in turn re-summon demons at will to keep fighting the good fight.
  • Like many SMT games, weaknesses are key. Hit hard and fast with weaknesses, which allow you to earn more turns. Diversify your party's spells -- do not put stock in one element just because it's powerful at the current moment. If you have a wide variety of elements available, you can just summon in demons and pound bosses with weakness after weakness, allowing you to earn around 10 turns per round, which is obviously a massive advantage.
  • Additionally, consider kitting out your protagonist with Dia (healing), and a wide variety of each spell group. That way, he can turn the tide of battle with weaknesses, as he tends to go first in a skirmish.
  • One of the best App upgrades I've used is the "recover MP (Spirit) while walking" App. This is useful because the protagonist (with Dia, as suggested above), can constantly heal the party and keep it topped off under any circumstance with a consistent supply of free MP -- no MP recovery items needed.
  • Outside of battle, any Demon with Dia can heal your party even if they're not in an active slot, which frees up MP (Spirit) for your active party. You may want to capture a Pixie early just to keep in your party stock (even if she's not active), as she can learn the Dia spell almost instantly.
  • Fill all of your open demon party slots by talking to and recruiting demons, even at the start of the game (you'll learn the recruit ability around an hour in). Always. The more demons you have, the more chances you have to power up the protagonist's spells when demons level up, and the more combinations you have for demon fusion. Additionally, if a demon is killed in battle, you can sub another one in from your party stock. If need be, get a few "extra demon slot" App upgrades early.
  • Once you've "caught" a demon (gotta catch 'em all), you can re-summon it for a price (specifically, Macaa, the game's currency). Usually this feature will allow you to re-summon it at the level you acquired it (typically this is a low level), but you can re-register it to a higher level.

    You may be asking yourself "why would I do this, since I won't ever banish my party members," but the reason for re-summoning demons is due to the fact that some of them may evolve, or you may combine a few into a new synthesized demon, so you will lose the initial demon that may be needed for a specific evolution tree or purpose.
  • When you're inside a demon's domain that isn't related to the main story, you will most likely not have a map. To combat this, always take the first branching path in the domain, and follow it to the end -- that way, you won't get lost as much as you attempt to locate an exit.

  • If you're having trouble during certain boss fights, don't be afraid to turn the difficulty down in Boroughs' menu, then turn it back up.
  • This is a general JRPG tip, but I'll say it anyway -- always use both save slots. Use slot one as your "safe" slot, only in non-volatile areas where you can't get "stuck" while under-leveled. Use your second slot inside dungeons, demon lairs, and the like. Also, don't forget that you can save anywhere.

Warning -- the following section contains one major plot spoiler that takes place roughly 5-7 hours into the game. Only read after you've reached the game's second setting. You'll know it when you see it.

Advanced tips:

  • SMT IV operates very similar to those old school games where you may want to bust out an actual sheet of paper and draw up a map for some areas. Demon's domains are ripe for this, as is the second major area of the game.
  • Without spoiling too much, you will eventually visit Tokyo during your travels. It will be extremely difficult at times to figure where to visit next. So difficult in fact, that I busted out a real life map of Tokyo (seriously) to figure out what quadrant I needed to go. This map in particular is one I've found to be the most applicable and accurate.
  • Talk to everyone. If a door has a red exclamation mark on it, it leads to a single room, usually with NPCs. Make note of these doors, and talk to every NPC listed on the conversation UI. At least one main story quest requires players to talk to a seemingly random NPC, so make sure you hit up everyone, no matter how insignificant, if you're stuck.

    This is especially true in Japan, as anyone could drop hints on what region to go next, even on the world map screen. Take pictures of area hints with a camera phone to ensure that you don't forget them.

Chris Carter, Reviews Director
 Follow Blog + disclosure DtoidChris Tips
Chris (Magnalon) has been enjoying Destructoid avidly since 2008. He finally decided to take the next step, make an account, and start blogging in January of 2009. Now, he's staff! -----------... more   |   staff directory

 Setup email comments

Unsavory comments? Please report harassment, spam, and hate speech to our community fisters, 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 * to your whitelists.

destructoid's previous coverage:
Shin Megami Tensei IV

  Jul 30

Shin Megami Tensei IV hits Europe in September

Good things come to those who wait... and wait... and wait...

  Jul 10

Review: Shin Megami Tensei IV

Atlus' key franchise goes portable

View all:powered by:  MM.Elephant

Ads on destructoid may be purchased from:

Please contact Crave Online, thanks!

Indivisible exposes why forced diversity and its proponents keep failing

Steam Controller Review

RAE - Back in Town

Thankful it's ov

Half - Life 3 FINALLY 100% confirmed...maybe.

Surprisingly... I'm *really* enjoying Fallout 4!!

Where the Hell is Breath of Fire?

Comments of the Week - バーガーベスト, ですよね?

My Month in Games - November 2015

Cblogs of 11/28/15 - Lonely Thanksgiving, Gatchaman Crowds, and more

 Add your impressions

Status updates from C-bloggers

El Dango avatarEl Dango
SeymourDuncan17 avatarSeymourDuncan17
Protag shipping is best shipping. [img][/img]
El Dango avatarEl Dango
My dreams are really weird and scary, so I hope it's okay if I let them be dreams.
Fenriff avatarFenriff
Finally played the last two Shantae games. Risky's Revenge wasn't bad, but Pirate's Curse was damn good.
Flegma avatarFlegma
Memo to self: spend your time cleaning before wasting ten or so hours on a cblog you'll end up just scrapping because you're incompetent and incapable of writing on the subject.
Is there an occupation out there for people who want to give up and not worry about shit for a while until they can recompose themselves before going back into society?
Parismio avatarParismio
That test was pretty raw. Some decisions cut deep, some I didnt care for at all. But im satisified with the end result.
Lawman avatarLawman
Torchman avatarTorchman
MeanderBot avatarMeanderBot
People are having serious anthropological discussions about video games and here I am reminding people that they have one more day to get a dumb card I painted:
Sr Churros avatarSr Churros
I just finished this thing here: I'm mostly happy with my results, altough it lacks some stuff like Skyward Sword or Sonic & Knuckles [img][/img]
techsupport avatartechsupport
While I am glad I only paid $15 for it, I bought J-STARS VS+ for one specific reason: to drink some beer and kick ass as Yusuke and Hiei. And in that regard, it delivers. Beer not included.
OverlordZetta avatarOverlordZetta
We can be so weird sometimes. You can easily move on from some of the stuff you might want to remember forever, but then sometimes you just can't let go of trivial things. What's up with that?
ScreamAid avatarScreamAid
I'm in the mood for some feel-good music. Hit me with your best feel-good VGM, people! [youtube][/youtube]
Pixie The Fairy avatarPixie The Fairy
My "Thankful it's over" post is done. Editing it tonight, posting tomorrow. Will there be more last-minute entries? Will Pixie be merciful to Twilight Princess? Will Zetta add words to his entry? Why is bear driving? Who run Bartertown? Stay Tuned!
Parismio avatarParismio
Whelp since i got my ass kicked at snowboarding ive been issued a muscle relaxer today and slept the entire day. Time went by so fast. Is- is this what the phantom cigar is like?
FlanxLycanth avatarFlanxLycanth
What the hell is a Shantae?
OrochiLeona avatarOrochiLeona
Ok you Monday morning motherfuckers, 3 favourite fictional universes you'd like to exist in (The initial iteration of the universe had to be in videogame form) Go.
ChrisHannard avatarChrisHannard
Just ran into my first 'suicide mole rat' in Fallout 4. I'm beginning to think this may not be a 100% accurate, meticulously researched recreation of life after the apocalypse.
KnickKnackMyWack avatarKnickKnackMyWack
Well I just played Undertale. It's a really unique game, but the difficulty in the beginning is a tad intense. Got clobbered once they started throwing three monsters at me at a time and lost a lot of progress... where's Toriel when I need her?
more quickposts



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 -