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Persona 5 Royal review
Exceptional
by Paul Rasms

Persona 5 Royal is astounding. Incredibly well made JRPG that adds a lot of really great features to an already solid basegame. I wish the story additions to Royal were handled better, but they're still pretty good.

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When I played the original Persona 5 at its release it immediately jumped to becoming one of my favourite games of all time. It had some of the best dungeons of any JRPG I'd played but also perhaps my favourite turn based battle system as well. It also had a truly excellent story with some great themes about making the world a better place populated by some of the most loveable characters any game JRPG or not.
Playing Royal as left me secure in those opinions so all that's left to talk about is the new content, of which there's a lot of and  is very good, but unfortunately a bit inelegantly placed, well at least once you get to the new final semester.
SPOILERS AHEAD, new confidants Kasumi and Maruki are great additions with some helpful abilities and buffs attached to them as well as being fun and interesting characters themselves and are weaved quite well into the story at first. Being able to hang out with Akechi now is a great addition as well, the added time allowing you to become more attached and sympathetic to his character. I was a bit disappointed that Kasumi does not join the party fully until the final semester, it seemed perfectly set up for her to join at Shidos place after all of the Casino shenanigans or at the very least join at Mementos. Alas she is saved for after all that in the new third semester palace.
It's this new semester were some of my gripes come in. OG P5 has a truly excellent build to it's climax where the whole city remembers who the Phantom Thieves are and cheer them on, all your completed confidants included, as you shoot God in the face. P5R does all that still...but then keeps going. Maruki is actually a pretty great villain with a compelling motivation and backstory and his Palace plays to all the strengths of the games design, I love this battle system so much I'm down for any excuse to play it more, but in his new reality the Phantom Thieves are once again not remembered, at least strongly, taking the wind out of the sails a bit of the games original climax. 
One feels it may have been best served to the story to have this palace appear earlier but then again certain plot points would not be possible like Akechi's return without interrupting the flow of the narrative drastically further. That being said as you say your goodbyes to all your friends at the end I can't say these minor issues stop me from crying like a baby for 30 mins straight as I said goodbye to everyone, like even saying goodbye to that old guy that runs the second hand shop was sad.
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«Just one more turn»
«Can’t stop playing»
I really did not think this game could get any better but I was very, very wrong. They took an absolute masterpiece and made it even better. This game has been out for a week and I'm already at the 35 hour mark. That may not seem like much for a game like Persona but I go to school full time and work full time. I am three months from getting my bachelors, so school also takes up a lot of time. I have been spending every single solitary free moment playing this, that is not a joke. You will notice the changes very early on, some big things, some small things.

They've taken the base game and perfected it, I'm not trying to sound like a complete fanboy but it's hard not to when you have a game as polished and fine-tuned as this.

Also spoiler but Maruki's theme is some straight up fire, same with Kamoshida's ambush theme in his palace.

Wanted to play Persona 5 but never pulled the trigger? Now's your chance.

Played Persona 5 some but never beat it? Start the fuck over.

Played Persona 5 and beat it? Time to have your heart stolen again.

I'm changing my original score of 9.8, this is a 10/10 in my book, one of the best games I've ever played. A true joy from start to finish and the way they seem to have streamlined it to make it an even smoother experience has pulled me in even more. If we do get a Persona 6, I can't wait to see what they do next.
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«Blew my mind»
«Can’t stop playing»