Screenshot: Persona 5

Hello, Gameologinauts, and welcome to our weekly thread for the discussion of weekend gaming plans and recent gaming glories. With Mass Effect: Andromeda comfortably behind me, I’m finally free to start exploring the mound of PlayStation 4 games that I’ve been amassing over the last few months. Nier: Automata is still my ultimate goal, but Persona 5’s siren call has proven to be too powerful. Besides it being the hot new thing that all the cool kids are talking about, it’s just a better fit for my lifestyle and the way I play games right now. I definitely wish I could be playing it on the Switch, but I dug out my PlayStation Vita to attempt the next best thing: remote play. Persona 5 is the perfect game for that tech, since its narrative-heavy scenes and turn-based battles don’t suffer much when the magical video stream from your PlayStation 4 decides to get all choppy. It’s not perfect, but it’s allowed me to knock out a half hour here and there, and I’m enjoying myself so far.

I’ll leave the reviewing to Clayton (part two of his series will be hitting early next week), but I did want to quickly talk about how this game is maybe the most accurate portrayal of trying to navigate a city’s subway system for the first time that has ever been made. Just like my first time traveling alone in New York City, getting to your first day of school in Persona 5 is overwhelming and confusing, as you search for a specific train line and struggle to decipher the stations’ various signage. (“Okay, I don’t know what any of these proper nouns are or which of them these two arrows are referring to. Actually, this looks right! Wait… that arrow is pointing up, but does that mean forward or up this staircase? I’m just going to die in here, aren’t I?”) Unlike actual subways, the game is kind enough to tell you when you’re about to walk through a turnstile and into the completely wrong platform, but it doesn’t spare the first-time traveler from the soul-crushing moment of finding one of the multiple entrances to their destination only for that specific one to be closed for God knows what reason and forcing you to resume your search, frantically darting through the miserable, faceless hordes of passengers with new levels of panic that didn’t even seem possible. That’s a classic MTA dick move right there.