With Persona 3 Reload’s release imminent, fans are getting both official and leaked looks at the game and fans of the series are digging what they see of the gameplay and story changes.
Studios have the habit of using “remaster” and “remake” as interchangeable terms. A game can be marketed as a remake and turn out to be simply a remaster with little to no modifications of the original game. While there is some vagueness when it comes to where the line is with games like Metal Gear Solid Delta: Snake Eater, one look at Persona 3 Reload next to its original makes it clear that the P Studio pulled out all the stops for this remake.
While it was clear from the trailers that the game had the potential for excellence, gameplay footage has confirmed that the marketing materials weren’t embellishing how good the game looks.
Persona 3 Reload gameplay footage, trailers show story and combat changes
Persona 3 Reload’s trailers and gameplay footage show the incredible leaps in the game’s graphics and overhauled combat.
This is made immediately obvious with the new opening segments of the game. The main character still walks through the streets heading towards the train station before the scene cuts to Yukari who is trying to use her Evoker. Originally, Yukari is sitting in a bathroom and is visibly distraught. In the new version, Yukari is in her room and is talking herself into pulling the trigger.
The main character takes the train and gets off at Iwatodai Station. At the station, the clock strikes midnight and he is inside the Dark Hour.
The graphics received a Persona 5-style overhaul to the HUD and menus, including the stylish navigation between screens. Other changes in Persona 3 Reload include the introduction of new gameplay elements including the removal of the fatigue system, the ability to control all party members, and more. Though the original game is still fondly remembered, it had various gameplay elements that have aged poorly.
Persona 3 Reload follows The Journey, the main story of the original game, but changes some scenes, adds new ones, and more. The game also boasts a brand-new cast of voice actors alongside a completely redone soundtrack with a new singer.
Persona 3 Reload updates gameplay, but sheds major story additions
Persona 3 Reload is based on Persona 3 and does not include all the additional story elements added in FES or Portable.
Following the success of Persona 3 in 2006, Atlus released Persona 3 FES. This version included updates to the original game and a new epilogue chapter.
A PSP remake of the game followed, known as Persona 3 Portable. This version allowed players to select a female protagonist, changing when the social links play out and which characters can be befriended. It did not include the epilogue chapter of Persona 3 FES, however. While FES and Portable built upon the original game, not all of these new story elements will be included in Persona 3 Reload.
Persona 3 Reload is based solely on Persona 3 and it will not include elements from Persona 3 FES or Persona 3 Portable. As such, Persona 3 Reload is not by any means a definitive version that includes all three versions. It’s unknown whether this will be added later as DLC or in a “Golden” or “Royal” re-release.