Persona 5 and Cognitive Estrangement – a Detached Enchantment


Persona 5 is a role-playing video game developed by Atlus that was released in 2016. The game follows a group of high school students who are struggling with modern issues such as social oppression and the pressure to conform to societal norms. They discover that they have the ability to enter a mysterious realm known as the “Metaverse,” where they can confront their personal struggles and fight against corrupt individuals who seek to exploit the power of the Metaverse for their own gain.

One of the key themes of Persona 5 is modernism, which is characterized by a focus on individualism, rationalism, and progress. The game explores the ways in which modern society often imposes strict rules and expectations on individuals, leading to a sense of alienation and disconnection from the world around them. The game’s protagonist and his friends seek to challenge these oppressive systems and assert their own agency in order to create a better world for themselves and those around them.

Another important theme of Persona 5 is enchantment, which refers to a sense of wonder and mystery in the world. The Metaverse is a place of magic and wonder, full of strange and bizarre creatures and environments. As the protagonist and his friends explore the Metaverse, they are constantly confronted with new and exciting discoveries that challenge their understanding of the world and their place in it.

Finally, the game touches on the theme of faith, as the protagonist and his friends must believe in themselves and their ability to make a difference in the world. Throughout their journey, they encounter numerous challenges and setbacks, but they never lose faith in their mission or in each other. In the end, their faith is rewarded as they are able to overcome their personal struggles and make a positive impact on the world around them.

Overall, Persona 5 is a deeply thought-provoking and engaging game that explores themes of modernism, enchantment, and faith in a unique and compelling way. Its complex characters, rich story, and immersive gameplay make it a must-play for fans of role-playing games and anyone looking for a deeper experience

Character Analysis

One of the standout features of Persona 5 is its cast of memorable and well-developed characters. The game’s protagonist is a teenage boy who has been transferred to a new high school after being falsely accused of a crime. He is joined by a diverse group of friends who each have their own unique personalities, backgrounds, and personal struggles. These characters are all likable and relatable, and their interactions with each other are a highlight of the game.

As the protagonist and his friends journey through the Metaverse, they encounter a variety of villains who seek to exploit its power for their own gain. These villains range from corrupt politicians and businessmen to twisted individuals with personal grudges. Each villain is well-written and has their own motivations and desires, making them more than just simple caricatures.

One interesting aspect of Persona 5’s characters is how they align with the player types model of video game studies. This model suggests that players can be classified into four categories based on their playstyle: action-oriented, achievement-oriented, social-oriented, and immersion-oriented. The characters of Persona 5 can be seen as representing different player types, with some characters being more action-oriented and others being more achievement-oriented. This adds an extra layer of depth to the characters and allows players to find characters that align with their own playstyle.

Overall, the characters of Persona 5 are a major strength of the game and are an integral part of its storytelling and gameplay. Their complex personalities and relationships add depth and richness to the game’s world and make it an enjoyable and rewarding experience for players

RPG and Genre Games in Japanese Identity

The role-playing game (RPG) genre has a long and storied history in Japan, with many classic and influential games coming from Japanese developers. Persona 5, developed by Atlus, is a prime example of the RPG genre and has gained a significant following both in Japan and abroad. In this essay, I will explore the role of RPG games like Persona 5 in Japanese society and how they reflect the cultural values and social issues of the country.

One aspect of Persona 5 that sets it apart from other RPGs is its focus on modern issues and social critique. The game takes place in contemporary Japan and deals with themes such as social oppression, the pressure to conform to societal norms, and the consequences of ignoring one’s personal beliefs. These themes are not uncommon in Japanese media, but Persona 5 presents them in a unique and nuanced way that resonates with players.

RPG games like Persona 5 also offer players a sense of escapism and fantasy. The game’s setting in the Metaverse allows players to experience a world that is different from their own, filled with magic and mystery. This can provide players with a temporary escape from the stresses and challenges of everyday life and allow them to explore different identities and roles.

Another factor that contributes to the popularity of RPG games in Japan is their emphasis on character development and relationships. Persona 5, like many other RPGs, allows players to form relationships with the game’s characters and make choices that affect the trajectory of the story. This sense of agency and choice can be appealing to players, as it allows them to shape their own experience and feel like they are a part of the game’s world.

In conclusion, RPG games like Persona 5 play a significant role in Japanese society as a form of entertainment, escapism, and cultural critique. These games allow players to explore different identities, relationships, and scenarios, providing them with a sense of agency and choice. The themes and issues addressed in these games also reflect the cultural values and social issues of Japan, making them an important form of media for understanding the country and its people.


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