E3 2015 Impressions: Persona 4: Dancing all Night; Saying Goodbye to Best Friends

Wednesday, June 24th, 2015

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P4D (00)

When Persona 4: Dancing all Night was announced, I was very surprised. This was as far away from what Persona 4 originally was as you could get, but some how it’s still in the same universe? The original Persona 4 was a life sim/dungeon crawler RPG and Persona 4: Dancing all Night is a rhythm game, like Hatsune Miku. So, of course, there was speculation on how developer Atlus got away with turning the series into a rhythm game, which actually continues right after the events of the original Persona 4. After playing the game at E3 2015, I believe they pulled it off and created something that is just as addicting as, if not more so than, the original.

P4D (3)

I chose Yukiko Amagi as my character, since she was my first love in Persona 4. I was a little intimidated by Atlus’s approach to rhythm games at first. I’ve played my share of Miku games, but that didn’t prepare me for the style Atlus went with. The notes come from the center of the screen, and on the left you have up, left, down and on the right you have triangle, circle, and X. At times, a circular star will come from the center where you will need to use the analog sticks. Even with my hour play time, I was not able to completely master those moves, which are actually crucial to winning the level.

P4D (1)

I played Dancing all Night on both the PlayStation TV and Vita. And with some adjustments on the PSTV, I enjoyed it a lot more seeing it on the big screen and having a PlayStation 3 controller in hand. Dancing all Night looks great on the Vita and plays fine, but I feel that with the impulsive button presses and speed of the game, holding the Vita became uncomfortable after an extended period of time. Granted, I was standing up for the demo.

P4D (2)

So, I will be honest with you, I didn’t want to put this game down. I lost track of time, and since I was wearing noise-cancelling head phones, I even forgot that I was on the E3 show floor. It then occurred to me that, when this game comes out, this might be my last adventure with the characters from Persona 4. These characters that I helped shape, became friends with, and even fell in love with, all while beating up loads of monsters; this is it. Even with these thoughts in my head, I was smiling as I was watching Yukiko do dance moves that she would have never done when I first met her, but look at how much she’s grown.

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From what I played, Persona 4: Dancing all Night contains the same level of story and fun that the original and spin-offs have. I am very anxious to play more and hang out, one last time, with some friends that I’ve already spent hundreds of hours with over the past seven years.

Persona 4: Dancing all Night comes out Sept. 29 for the PlayStation Vita.