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Persona 5 Strikers Isn't a Great PS Plus Game, But Persona 5 Royal Is

Persona 5 Strikers Isn't a Great PS Plus Game, But Persona 5 Royal Is Image
  • Posted on 24th Sep, 2022 18:25 PM

Persona 5 Strikers is rumored to be free in January 2022 on PS Plus, but it doesn't feel like a good fit for the service given its sequel nature.

p>Recent leaks seem to suggest that Persona 5 Strikers will be one of January 2022's free PS Plus games. Strikers was released in the West earlier this year and proved to be a delightful follow-up to the events of Persona 5 in the form of a Musou-style action game. While it's certainly a worthy spinoff sequel to Persona 5, Strikers wouldn't make a very good PS Plus title given how much it leans on the player understanding the events that took place in the original title. Instead, a great Persona game to be given for free on the service would be Persona 5 Royal.

PS Plus is a great service that generally has good offerings and, while Persona 5 Strikers is by all accounts a quality title, it doesn't feel like a good fit for general audiences who don't know anything about Persona. That's not a sentiment being used to gatekeep; instead, it simply means that the spinoff just isn't a great place for a prospective fan to start, and that Persona 5 Royal would be a much better offering for anyone looking to get into the series.

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Persona 5 Strikers Doesn't Hold Newcomer's Hands

There's something to be said for sequels that just get right into the meat of a game without feeling the need to catch up new players to what's going on. While that's not always a great way to handle a sequel, it works in Persona 5 Strikers given the fact that it's a niche spinoff title and not a full-blown new entry in the mainline Persona series. The ending of Persona 5 is pretty complicated with plenty of major narrative twists, and the aftermath changes a lot of big things for its cast. As such, if someone were starting the series with Strikers, a direct follow-up to Persona 5, they'd be doing themself a major disservice as the opening hours spoil just about every major moment that P5 builds to for nearly 100 hours.

What's more, Persona 5 Strikers does a lot to include most of the mechanical elements surrounding the titular personas despite being a completely different genre than its predecessor. While the persona fusion system and the rest of the options available to players in the Velvet Room aren't hard to understand if properly turorialized, Strikers doesn't do much to onboard newcomers to the series about how those sorts of things work and their importance. Players are able to scoot by for a lot of the game with underleveled personas, but as things start ramping up in difficulty towards the end of the game, they're likely going to struggle if they're brand-new to the series and not well-versed in persona fusion.

Persona 5 Royal is a Great Place to Start

Instead of having Strikers up for free on PS Plus, it would make a lot more sense for Sony to list Persona 5 Royal on the service. The game is a great introduction to the Persona series, as it starts from the very beginning of Joker and the rest of the Phantom Thieves' story, requiring no preexisting knowledge of the series to play. Persona 5 is currently available for free for anyone with a PS5 thanks to the PS Plus Collection, but most fans agree that Royal is the definitive way to experience the game due to all of its new content and the quality of life changes made to the original.

Given the pick-up-and-play nature of PS Plus, if Persona 5 Strikers is listed, a lot of people who haven't played the original may try it out, only to see the game and entire Persona series as not for them due to how little Strikers is interested in catching newcomers up to speed. Royal, on the other hand, is a great introduction to the series and its concepts, so it would likely be able to bring in plenty of new fans who try out everything given away on PS Plus.

Persona 5 Strikers is available now for PC, PS4, and Switch.

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