OK Persona 5 strikersI’ll give you a chance to come clean Where is my girlfriend and what did you do to her?

I admit, Hifumi wasn’t in the foreground of my thinking when I first returned to the world of turn-based Japanese RPG Persona 5. I really wanted to catch up with my friends and phantom thieves: Ann, Yusuke, Makoto, Futaba, Haru, Morgana – . Although only six months had passed since us attacked and dethroned GodI hadn’t spent time with our Ragtag group in three years (apart from one ). I was curious to see what they’d been doing in my absence and how our shared experiences might have affected them.

We had spent a whole year enter the minds of cruel adults supernaturally, our mismatched gang of misunderstood teenagers who literally fight against the dark desires in people and force them to repent. There is no way that will change the path of your life in any way.

Fortunately, none of them seemed particularly traumatized by the experience. Reunited in Persona 5 strikersOur gang of happy underdogs was now out on our show, cruising around Japan applying an unsolicited mental recalibration to a new group of unsuspecting targets – and immersing themselves in new hack-and-slash gameplay.

After the initial excitement about our reunion subsided, I began to wonder about my friends who weren’t in the moonlight as ghost criminals. Café Leblanc’s curry king Sojiro was still there, allowing me to reclaim my makeshift bedroom in the store’s attic. But I had no idea how my ex-teacher Kawakami was doing. Both Iwai’s airsoft store and Tae’s medical clinic were closed.

And there was nothing to be seen of Hifumi, my beautiful Shogi queen.

I first met Hifumi Togo in a quiet Kanda church, a peaceful sanctuary that she often went to to practice Shogi. She became my instructor, teaching me strategy through the Japanese board game and unknowingly honing my fighting skills. Evening after evening I returned and evening after evening I taught me Hifumi. Eventually she confided in me and confided in her difficult relationship with her mother and the pressures she felt as a high-profile shogi player. I supported them and intervened in silence to help with their problems. Our relationship grew closer, more intimate, and slowly turned into a fragile high school romance.

While many Persona 5 The hearts of the players were stolen by badass biker Makoto. Starting a romantic relationship with another phantom thief felt too much like going out with a coworker. Our mission to bring the living daylight out of the physical manifestations of people’s corrupt psyche has been too important to compromise. I wanted to separate my love life as much as possible from my likely illegal robberies.

The shy, weird Hifumi was largely disconnected from my world of supernatural percussive psychology, and she had never met my cunning alter ego Joker. Aside from being the catalyst for a little side adventure, she had nothing to do with the phantom thieves. She also attended a completely different school, so she had never heard the rumors disguising me as a dangerous criminal (which, by the way, were absolutely false).

All Hifumi saw was my simple, unexciting, everyday self, humble in a normal Shujin Academy uniform and heavy glasses. She chose me anyway.

Persona 5 strikers follows a new storyline so you can technically play it without touching it Persona 5. You’ll still have fun if you’re willing to accept any premise and run with it, no matter how fancy it may be, although it will likely be slightly confusing, like watching the Downton Abbey Film without having seen Downton Abbey. Learning that the prisons you are exploring are similar to palaces means nothing if you don’t know what a palace is.

The ones who have already played Persona 5 It will be much easier for them to understand the game and they will enjoy getting back to the familiar world and characters they love. Since this is a straightforward narrative sequel, many relationships, terms, and basic world structures carry over to better understand the purpose of your battles. The introduction of the road trip premise also keeps the environment dynamic, so you won’t get bored circling the same neighborhoods that you’ve already thoroughly explored.

Persona 5 strikers is more of a spin-off from Persona 5 as a sequel in terms of gameplay, with significant changes that further revitalize the series. While I personally preferred Persona 5‘s strategic turn-based combat, strikerThe move to real-time hack-and-slash action offers a refreshing new challenge and a faster pace. Fortunately, strategy is still an important element of battles as the push of buttons can only get you so far. Defeating stronger opponents is virtually impossible unless you jump into a menu and fire magical attacks that target your opponents’ weaknesses.

Still, fans of the original will find Strikers feels a little less robust than its predecessor in some areas, especially when it comes to friendships. Rather than having individual relationships with your friends, it builds your bond with the whole group – a significant change considering how focused she is Persona 5 had been on these links. If you were hoping to deepen your relationship with your favorite character, you will likely be disappointed.

What if you talk to your girlfriend about future plans or maybe even want to see her again after half a year? Well then, bad luck, Romeo.

We were in love

I understand Hifumi’s absence from Persona 5 strikers on a practical level. There had been several different love interests Persona 5Hence, it was easier for the developers to avoid the topic than to pick one as canon. Players might assume that their relationships will continue off-screen, or that they have broken up in the past few months – if they turned to love at all. High school romances often don’t last, and six months of teenage years can just as well be forever.

Still, I don’t believe for a second that my patient, level-headed Hifumi wasn’t waiting for me. Before I left, she told me that this was not a farewell and that we had even promised to visit.

“You won’t be victorious if you take your eyes off them,” she said. “It’s the same in shogi and romance, yes?”

I spent many of them at Hifumi’s side. Now everything has been wiped away, the board reset and my girlfriend gone. We spent those quiet evenings sharing a shogi board, and shy eyes wandered to one another when we thought we were unobserved. The peace of our mutual isolation, the mutual understanding found in the sacred solitude of the Church. Our innocent, tentative affection has only been witnessed by her, me, and God (not the one we dethroned).

I’m not trying to sink this relationship, but we’ve both invested too much for our love to be ignored.

But like an overly cautious parent who teaches their children to be angry with them, the world of Persona 5 strikers kept Hifumi away from me. I can only assume that this served to drive home the unjust cruelty of this universe that hates young love and wants me to suffer personally. The wasn’t even mentioned before being taken to the next town, pulled away from my star, and drawn into another Phantom Thief adventure.

It was undoubtedly exciting to go back to unlicensed amateur psychology. I will always cherish any time I spend hurting people’s minds and beating their psyche with my friends in style. But like most things, driving people into mental breakdowns is just more fun when you share them with someone you love.

Persona 5 strikers launches outside of Japan on February 23rd on Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4 and PC.

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