This is Objection Network’s countdown of the top 25 video game series of all-time. We’re counting down to the best franchise ever on March 31. For more info on the voting process, click here.
16) Persona (3 votes, 86 points)
Chris: Persona is in a decent position on this list, but it could have been much higher for a couple of reasons. One, there was another potential panelist who would have had it as his No. 1, which would have put this in the top 10. Two, Persona 5 should have been out by now, and that game has been crushing it in reviews. But that’s not how things worked out, and here we are.
The franchise has essentially been split into two halves: 1/2, and everything since. That line divides character designs, core gameplay functions like social links and — if we’re being honest — public awareness. There are some folks who have never played the first couple games who would still swear by the series. There are others who slightly resent Persona’s success in the last decade as it has gone more mainstream.
In any case, the franchise is pure RPG through and through. Turn-based battles, nifty summoning mechanics, and the ability to guide your silent protagonist into an often dark and difficult story. There are a ton of game mechanics in play here, many of which stay hidden under the hood (although Persona 4 Golden and now 5 are doing a better job of bringing those to the surface).
It’s worth noting that Persona 4 originally came out in 2008. That’s easy to forget in a sea of remakes, re-releases and…rhythm games?…but it’s true. As such, Persona 5’s release is a huge benchmark for the series, and by all accounts it delivers on every level. I’m excited to get my hands on it in a couple weeks, and we’ll see how this ranking holds up in the long run.
Shaun: Jason, Chris, and I would all agree that they ruined Persona 3 for me. It’s no one’s fault — just a casualty of the situation. Hype in the Persona 4 and Persona 4 Golden train was intense in our household, before I ever really knew a thing about the game, so by the time I played it, my expectations made it so that if it wasn’t the greatest game ever created — a manifestation of Video Game Jesus itself — I would have been disappointed.
It wasn’t the greatest game ever created.
With that said, I find myself looking forward to 5. The themes of the collective unconscious and the lore intrigue me, and maybe now that I have my own PS4, I can play it before the series and the soundtrack are ruined forever. Time will tell.