Game music of the day: Why Persona 4's battle music was the best

Welcome to GamesRadar's daily blast of all things pertaining to the ever-growing field of game music. Each post will introduce new sounds, games, composers and fan-made remixes of gaming's greatest aural achievements.

April 13, 2010

Above: Persona 4's memorable characters, excellent story, and brilliant battle system were all perfectly complimented by its amazing soundtrack

Persona 4
Song: Reach Out to the Truth
Composer: Shōji Meguro

Above: A cut from “Reach Out to the Truth” from Persona 4

The best battle music never gets old, but it’s so easy to forget about it. This single track is one of the most important and memorable pieces of music in every RPG. It’s what keeps you motivitated to hang in there for that one last quest before you reach that final save point after a long session of leveling up for the day. But most importantly, it’s what keeps you pumped up to fight again and again no matter how many times you beat down the same bad guys with the same party of characters - and when it comes to battle music, Persona 4’s got one of the best tracks of all time.

Fueled by hard power chords and tasty licks just before the catchy keyboard solo kicks in, Persona 4's battle score, "Reach Out to the Truth," grabs you by the throat and never lets go. Plus, it loops nicely, which is a must for any song that needs to carry you through the lengthly battles JRPGs are known for.

Above: Happiness is listening to "Reach Out to the Truth" while Kanji beats up a demon with his school desk

But despite high review scores and the series' loyal fan base, many RPG fans missed out on this amazing Atlus title and that’s a shame, because Persona 4 didn't just have one of the most overlooked soundtracks in JRPG history, it was one of the best JRPGs of all time. Period. The fact that it released so late in the PlayStation 2’s lifecycle couldn’t have helped either. North American fans didn’t get their localized version until December 9, 2008, and European fans had to wait till March 13, 2009 for their release. Strangers to the recent Persona titles are only beginning to get glimpses of the Persona 3 remake, "Persona 3 Portable," on the PSP - and with recent news that Atlus has just begun work on Persona 5, we're wondering if the series will always be doomed to delivering fanservice to just a select group of loyal fans.

Above: In case you can't tell, Chie is our favorite Persona 4 character. But Teddie was GamesRadar's choice for the sexiest character of 2008 

That's why we're hoping to bring some Okami-like love to the great tracks in this RPG gem. In addition to this kickass battle track, all of Persona 4’s songs were composed by Shōji Meguro, who has done work for many Atlus games, including: Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey, Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Summoner 2, and Persona 3. But his work in Persona 4 is by far our favorite. Give the battle music a listen and tell us what you think.

Above: An excellent cover of “Reach Out to the Truth” by shiningwizard327. Check out his YouTube channel, his rendition of “Heartbeat, HeartBreak,” and lots of other great game music guitar covers

April 13, 2010

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Game music of the day: Super Castlevania IV
Prologue by Adachi and Kudou

Game music of the day: seven amazing cover bands
The Advantage, Entertainment System and more!


  • ShadowBroker23 - July 27, 2011 2:39 p.m.

    I'm high on Persona music right now... I need to accomplish my unfulfilled dreams of completing Perona 4 !!!!
  • Metroidhunter32 - July 17, 2010 7:34 p.m.

    This article actually made me go and buy a copy of Persona 4. Currently sitting in the throne as my favorite game ever. Many thanks GR.
  • JohnDagger - July 6, 2010 10:40 p.m.

    The game music so good that the shipped it with the game. Can't wait to see what they pull off for Persona 5.
  • shopping88 - June 8, 2010 1:40 p.m.

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  • austin128 - April 15, 2010 4:29 p.m.

    Personally didn't like it..
  • Kisokuiki - April 15, 2010 4:58 a.m.

    I always did prefer P4's soundtrack over P3's. My favorite tracks are this, The Fog and Heaven.
  • PixelSly - April 14, 2010 8:59 p.m.

    Damn, now I want to go sink more time into P4 and I have nowhere enough time to do that :(
  • mgkyo666 - April 14, 2010 7:24 p.m.

    @RougeRED ME TOO!!! And if I dont find it there then... TO EBAY!!!!! Captcha: thongs but (lol)
  • IamNOTatalkingpony - April 14, 2010 6:26 p.m.

    One of my favourite games of all time. Just reading this has made me wipe off the dust on the ps2 and reach for my copy. WOOHOO!!!
  • philipshaw - April 14, 2010 12:01 p.m.

    I love this game and soundtrack, I must have played Persona 4 for like 100 hours
  • TheElephantManchurianCandidate - April 14, 2010 9:59 a.m.

    This totally brings back memories of the Giant Bomb Endurance Run thanks Gdar. ReCaptcha: foreign frogmen
  • KishouTenpi - April 14, 2010 8:15 a.m.

    I bought the game with the sountrack Me and my friend always thought the song said "All you lesbians, can you let me out?" but I agree, it is an epic peice of fight music
  • MoTheHawk - April 14, 2010 6:41 a.m.

    Just how awesome is Persona's music? Awesome enough to get its own live concert in Japan. Here's Reach Out to the Truth:
  • JeffGoldblum1 - April 14, 2010 5:56 a.m.

    Hell Yeah. I love Persona 4. Fantastic Game. Amazing Soundtrack. If it's not over you can pick up Persona 4 new at GameStop for $20 with a free soundtrack. That's where I got my copy. It's nice to see the music of an obscure game like this get recognized.
  • Amnesiac - April 14, 2010 4:43 a.m.

    The whole soundtrack is phenomenal, but this is definitely a particular favorite. Great choice. Am I the only person who prefers Naoto?
  • CH3BURASHKA - April 14, 2010 4:34 a.m.

    A lot of people are saying P3 had a better soundtrack. I would say to them that P3 and P4 had equally good tracks, head-to-head, but P4 simply had quantity OF quality. P3's dorm theme was DOPE, though.
  • GamesRadarTylerNagata - April 14, 2010 4:22 a.m.

    @Yaro Everyone's entitled to their own opinion, of course. But as for me, I only make bento lunches for Chie. The others only get pity lunches from me for social link purposes.
  • Yaro - April 14, 2010 4:17 a.m.

    Clearly Rise-chi is the best =) On the article...I second, third and fourth everything that was said. And said well. =) Again GR delivers.
  • AshLynx - April 14, 2010 4:05 a.m.

    Eh, I think I'm far more partial to Persona 3's awesome soundtrack, particular Master of Shadow full moon battle theme. I also really like Persona PSP's battle theme (I need to get back to playing that soon). I prefer P3 in story and characters too over 4. Let's just say I've already got P3 FES, but I'm getting the PSP remake when that finally comes out because being able to control everyone directly would make that the perfect game to me. Here's hoping they make a 2 remake on PSP too so I can play it without selling a kidney.

Showing 1-20 of 40 comments

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