Playing Persona 5 Tactica: Style and Substance

Persona 5 Tactica: A Stylish Tactical RPG Experience

Persona fans have a special attachment to their favorite characters, and when the credits roll on Personas 3, 4, or 5, it can be difficult to let go. Fortunately, Persona publisher Atlus understands this sentiment and has continued to deliver follow-up titles featuring SEES and the Investigation Team. In October, they are treating us to a new genre: tactical RPG with Persona 5 Tactica.

I had the opportunity to play Persona 5 Tactica (P5T) on Xbox at gamescom, and I must say, it’s shaping up to be one of the most stylish tactics games in the market. Everything I loved about Persona 5 returns in a remixed fashion, from the iconic music played with new instruments to the familiar characters hanging out in Leblanc Coffee Shop. The menu options have even received a new “cuteified” art style. If you’re a fan of the Persona world, you’ll already be drawn to this game.

But the most notable change is the gameplay. Persona 5 Tactica has transformed from a turn-based RPG to a tactics-focused adventure with its own Persona twists. Strange occurrences in Tokyo lead the Phantom Thieves back into the Metaverse, and players must navigate this system one battle at a time, mastering its particular nuances.

In the mainline Persona games, the focus is on exploiting enemies’ elemental weaknesses to launch devastating all-out attacks. In P5T, you’ll be deploying familiar tools like melee weapons, firearms, and Personas, but the strategy is different. Placement and cover now play crucial roles in maximizing the effectiveness of your team’s turns.

A key tactic revolves around using melee attacks to leave enemies defenseless, opening up the opportunity for a second character to “down” them and earn a free turn known as “One More.” If you can surround a downed enemy with your characters in a triangle formation, you can execute a powerful Triple Threat attack, reminiscent of Persona 5’s All Out Attack. It’s a strategic choice that pays off in battle. Just like in basketball and soccer, the triangle formation works wonders in P5T.

Persona 5 Tactica

However, setting up Triple Threats often requires at least one character to leave cover, creating a compelling risk/reward scenario. P5T is filled with these moments of tension, where players must decide between speed and patience, safety and daring. Finding the perfect balance between these systems will define your experience in P5T.

And of course, P5T delivers everything else you love about the world of Persona 5. The witty banter between characters, such as Futaba’s self-referential remarks about their next adventure as “DLC,” and the playful arguments between Ryuji and Yusuke over a beach trip, bring back memories of the time spent in the alternate universes of Tokyo. It’s a nostalgic journey that I’m ready to embark on once again.

Persona 5 Tactica is set to release on November 17 for Xbox Game Pass, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, and Windows PC.