The highly anticipated remake of Persona 3, Persona 3 Reload, finally released last week to positive critical acclaim. While it offers a generally faithful revamp of the original role-playing game, a few distinct changes were made overall.
Notably, as well as quality-of-life improvements and tweaks to the battle system, more focus has been placed on the mysterious antagonistic group, Strega. Without getting too deep into spoiler territory, Strega consists of a trio of Persona users (people who can summon manifestations of their personality to fight with) whom the protagonist and his group come into conflict with throughout the story.
In a new interview with PC Gamer, Persona team general producer Kazuhisa Wada confirmed that this is something he’s wanted to do ever since he worked on the original 2006 game, on which he served as chief designer.
“Something I had wanted to do since we had made the original Persona 3, but never got around to – I wanted to increase the portrayal of the Strega,” Wada revealed.
“They are a very fascinating and puzzling group of enemies,” he explained. “So I wanted to make sure that their backbone and ideology were conveyed, and I wanted our fans to feel the catharsis of the story by digging deeper into the theme.”
With that said, changes made in the remake weren’t taken lightly by Atlus. Elsewhere in the interview, Wada explained that the developers “were extremely careful about the areas to be changed and how to adjust them.”
All in all though, Persona 3 Reload has generally been considered a hit with fans old and new. In my review for TechRadar Gaming, I praised the gorgeous visuals and improvements that have been made to the overall experience, such as the in-battle ‘shift’ mechanic which allows you to pass turns between the party when an enemy is knocked down. However, I criticized the removal of Persona 3 Portable’s female protagonist, as, even though Reload is a remake of the original RPG, it felt that the character’s inclusion should never have been considered as some sort of ‘bonus feature’ in the first place, but rather the standard that should be expected.
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