Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 3 FES review

Go to class, battle evil and try to get dates - Persona's a great combo, but is it worth the update?

GamesRadar+ Verdict


  • +

    A lot more of the same great game

  • +

    Getting the true ending

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    Even deeper Persona customization


  • -

    The soundtrack is embarrassing

  • -

    Same repetitive dungeon elements

  • -

    Too deep into the JRPG niche for some

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If you played Persona 3, is it worth your $30 to buy Persona 3 FES all over again? Yes. For everyone else, congratulations on not buying the first game, it's all included with FES - you are a winner. There are two Episodes in the game: The Answer, a new thirty-hour campaign taking place directly after the events of the original Persona 3, and The Journey, which is the original episode spiffed up with new features. FES has added enough new content to make a replay fun for Persona veterans, but if you'd rather just pick up where you left off, save files can be imported to the new game.

The most important part of the new content is the new campaign. You now control a new hero, the android Aigis, and you've become trapped inside your dorm reliving the same day over and over with all your best buddies. Once again, it's your job to harness the power of Personas, which are powerful creatures that level up with you and give you stat bonuses, weaknesses and tremendous attacks related to their attributes. Chapter one sent you through a dark tower controlled by shadowy creatures, now you have to explore through the Abyss of Time, also controlled by shadows - same great game, but now you go down instead of up.

The new chapter takes the difficulty up, making combat in a challenging game downright hard. By the time you reach the second storyline, you should be a hardened veteran and we were glad to have a tougher challenge. For sadists looking for even more pain, you can replay the first chapter with the new Hard difficulty setting. Be sure before you select it because the difficulty can't be changed once you've started playing.

Aside from the story, there are a bunch of new Personas that can be created and won through a card shuffle, after battles (the shuffle is also harder - now cards tend to fly off the screen). Collecting up to 170 of these summonable creatures is at the core of why we can't stop playing this game. New Personas are useable in either chapter of the game, and so is the new crafting system, which lets you fuse them into new weapons for your heroes to use.

More info

GenreRole Playing
DescriptionPersona 3 FES delivers two new chapters and the original Persona 3 itself in this excellent continutation of an already great RPG.
Franchise nameShin Megami Tensei
UK franchise nameShin Megami Tensei
US censor rating"Mature"
UK censor rating""
Alternative names"Persona 3 FES"
Release date1 January 1970 (US), 1 January 1970 (UK)