The initial wave of Persona 5 screenshots have surfaced on PlayStation Japan’s official game page, giving us the first batch of new content since the game’s reveal took over the internet back in February.
Sadly these images aren’t technically new. Gamers who have painstakingly memorized every frame of the trailer with countless repeated views will be let down; most of the screens are grabbed straight from the footage itself.
Just in case you’re not familar with the Persona series let’s do a quick recap.
Persona 5 is the firth installment in the landmark RPG franchise and follows the lives of four students who transcend the normalcy of everyday life by summon imaginary aspects of their minds, called “personas”. Players engage in turn-based style combat against various supernatural enemies, and traverse dungeons with a party of characters that have their own roles and personalities.
The main character, Phantom, stalks the shadows and rooftops as a thief by night, and the other characters have been described as “juvenile academics”. This rebellious behavior isn’t just for the sake of character development; it’s also quite symbolic, and represents the internal struggle of breaking past the norms of society.
According to the Persona 5 Wikipedia entry, game director Katsura Hashino stated that “while the last few titles were about the protagonists chasing the antagonists, Persona 5 would feature more of the antagonists and phenomena caused by them chasing the protagonists during their activities.”
Although the pics aren’t new, we do get a glimpse at the player character’s first persona, “Arsene Lupin” (seen above).
The official description for this particular persona hints at an extension of Phantom’s thief role, which is seen during the trailer. Arsene seems more sinister and mysterious than a traditional black-mask thief, featuring a wicked mask and dark black wings.
Apart from the persona we also get a nice look at some battle sequences. Again these are seen in the trailer, but if nothing else it serves as a remind and gives us a reason to be excited about the game once more. Players can use guns like machine uzis and pistols to dispatch foes, or get up close and personal with melee weapons.
Even still a lot of the game’s mechanics are still unknown, but sharp-eyed veterans of the series will recognize key elements like Social Link and the Velvet Room featuring Igor and his twin assistants.
The PlayStation Japan update also hints that Persona 5 might soon be finalized and released. And the sooner it gets released in Japan, the sooner it makes its long overseas journey to North America to spin happily in our PlayStations.
Persona 5 will release exclusively to PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4 sometime in 2015.