Persona 5 finally released last month in the west, and was pretty instantly met with both critical and commercial success. Fans and critics alike took to the game, with some calling it the best JRPG in years. Persona 5 director, Katsura Hashino, took to the PlayStation Blog to thank fans in the west with a special message.
Hashino says that it’s hard for the development team to see the reactions of fans sometimes, due to the distance, and equally hard for them to imagine how western fans would react to the game.
” Persona 5 is a very “Japanese” story with some political aspects to it, so I couldn’t imagine how Western players would react to it. I did know, however, that Persona 5 was highly anticipated by gamers overseas even back when we were developing the game, so I was curious to see how its story would be received.”
He compares traditional Japanese superhero stories against western ones, saying that usually Japanese heroes fight off forces from outside society while western superheroes more often than not fight off a force that comes from within. He hopes that this made Persona 5 appeal more to western audiences, as it’s also about fighting off a force that comes from within. Hashino also stresses why he loves making games.
“Since the game just launched in the West, I’d like to look back on it at a later time, once I receive feedback from the Western audience—how their gameplay experiences were, what kind of things they felt, etc. I hope that the tale of Persona 5 will leave a lasting impression on everyone who plays it. No matter what kind of project I take on going forward, I love creating RPGs that are both moving and relatable regardless of cultural differences—in fact, I’m most interested in strengthening those aspects right now.”
Hashino notes more than once that he’s immensely grateful to fans for all of their support, and wants to keep creating thoughtful engaging games for them. He’s now moving onto a new project separate from the Persona series,
“Last year, with the milestone of the Persona series’ 20th anniversary, I handed off the series development to my successors and announced the start of my new RPG project that takes place in a fantasy world. Be it a game set in modern day, like the Persona and Shin Megami Tensei series, or a game set in a new fantasy world, I aim to create games that provide an invaluable experience of reflecting on oneself through a journey, while roleplaying as characters that players can deeply relate to.”
Persona 5 is now available for PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4. You can read the entire post from Hashino here.
How are you liking Persona 5? Have you beaten it yet, or are you still making your way through? Leave a comment below and let us know.
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