After several delays, the release date for Persona 5 has been announced, along with the game's Collector's Edition in a new trailer that launched yesterday.
The latest in the highly-praised JRPG franchise, Persona 5 has finally gained a Japanese release date. Though a date is yet to be confirmed for its Western release, developer Atlus is still maintaining that the game will be launching here in 2016.
Revealed at the end of yesterday's trailer reveal, Persona 5 was confirmed to have a release date of September 15 this year, meaning that Japanese players are only months away from their latest adventure. The video also shows off some of the title's story and gameplay, as well as revealing new members of the cast that have never been seen before.
Persona 5, which we count as one of our most anticipated games of 2016, was announced to launch with a 20th anniversary Collector's Edition in Japan. To those dedicated fans willing to make the investment, Atlus will include an art book, a soundtrack that includes songs from previous Persona titles, and special series-inspired DLC that features costumes from Persona 3 and 4. The Collector's Edition costs 13,800 yen (roughly $128USD) but has not been confirmed for a release outside of Japan.
Atlus also announced that the Persona 5 anime series, which likely follows the story of the game, will have its premiere in Japan this September. Western fans may wish to avoid the show entirely if they want to stay out of spoiler territory. Though the release date in the West is uncertain, it's entirely possible that we'll learn more at E3, since the title is confirmed to be making an appearance.
For those of you who haven't heard about the Persona franchise, it began as a spin-off from the Shin Megami Tensei series, featuring high school students who use their indivual 'Personas' to do battle with deadly creatures called 'Shadows'. The games feature dungeon-crawling combat, as well as the opportunity to strengthen your bonds or 'social links' with your partners. The upcoming title's predecessor, Persona 4, made our list of top 10 JPRGs, so excitement is certainly warranted with this future release.
We don't know too much about how Persona 5 will differ from previous games in the series, though the trailers released so far have shown off a few new additions. In dungeons, players will now be relying on cover and traversing gaps while exploring or getting the drop on enemies. The 16-year-old protagonist and his friends form a group named the "Phantom Thieves of Hearts" as they work together to explore the "Palace," a castle created by the hearts of people, and steal ill intent from others in order to help them.
For those looking to get into the series before Persona 5's release, it might be worth searching for a copy of Persona 4 for PS2, although they're sometimes a little expensive. PS Vita owners are in luck however, as the upgraded and remastered Persona 4 Golden is available exclusively on the handheld console and is vastly superior to the previous iteration.
Persona 5 will have its Japanese release on September 15 for PS3 and PS4. The Western release is still slated for 2016.