Persona 5 set the world on fire when it dropped in Japan back in 2016, and even more when it landed in the US last year. The series is at the height of its popularity right now. But I often wonder how many people who started with Persona 5 have gone back and played the previous games. I’d wager not a whole lot seeing as Persona 3 and Persona 4 were PS2 games, and while they were released on PS3 as PSN titles, I wonder just how many people realize they’re on the PS Store. Probably the easiest to find is Persona 4 Golden for PS Vita, but then that raises the question of: Who owns a Vita or PSTV(Not to discount the people who do own a Vita or PSTV and played Persona 4 Golden, just an FYI. I myself own a PSTV and bought it solely for P4G.)? So that leads me to the belief that remakes of the previous four Persona games wouldn’t be such a bad idea, especially as a way to bridge the gap between Persona 5 and the inevitable Persona 6.
Now, you may be thinking “But that would be way too much work!” And you’d be right in the case of Persona 1, 2, and 4. However, that would not be the case with Persona 3. The reason being that Persona 3: Dancing Moon Night has necessitated modeling various areas from Persona 3 along with the characters themselves. By nature of that alone, quite a bit of the modeling work has already been done. While that still leaves quite a bit of work for a remake, it definitely shaves some time off.
There are multiple reasons why a Persona 3 remake makes a lot of sense compared to any of the other Pre-P5 games, namely Persona 4. Persona 4 received its Golden edition on PlayStation Vita which can be considered the definitive Persona 4 experience. It has everything and lacks nothing while also being a bit cleaner graphically. Persona 3, however, has no such definitive edition. Instead, it has two separate versions that offer radically different experiences. One is the base PlayStation 2 version, Persona 3 FES, which contains the original game and “The Answer” epilogue. Then there’s Persona 3 Portable, which strips out a lot of stuff to streamline the experience for mobile devices, but overhauls the gameplay so that you can control your party members in battle like in Persona 4, in addition to a female version of the main character to play through the game as which changes some elements of the game. While a definitive edition ala Persona 4 Golden could merge these two together, at this point there’s only so much they could do for what is arguably a very dated game. A full on remake in the Persona 5 engine would make the game far more appealing to new players.
Of course, the same goes for Revelations: Persona(Persona 1), the Persona 2 duology, and Persona 4. Out of those 3(technically 4), Persona 4 would be the second easiest to remake since they already made some models for Persona 4: Dancing All Night, though not nearly to the same extent as Persona 3. The other three games, however, would have to be entirely remade from scratch, and even then, they’re dramatic departures from what Persona became starting with Persona 3. That being said, a survey that Atlus did suggested that remakes of at least Persona 1, 2, and 3 were on the table should the demand be there.
Needless to say, I’m crossing my fingers that SOMETHING happens in the near future. As mentioned before, Atlus could use something to tide new and old fans over in the interim between Persona 5 and Persona 6, and spin-offs have kind of already worn out their welcome after the Persona 4 milking.
The main reason I want a Persona 3 remake to be real, is because it’s my favorite of the latter three games. The atmosphere, characters, music, setting, story, I love it all. It’s dark, edgy, and deals with the themes of life & death. Quite the contrast to Persona 4's Scooby Doo murder mystery and Persona 5's societal shackle breaking. Persona 4 and Persona 5 had their dark moments, Persona 5 more so, but Persona 3 still stands above them as the darkest of the three(Not counting the first three games in the series.) and is quite the emotional tale by the end. Bringing that story and characters into modern HD graphics would be amazing. The same can be said for Persona 4 as well, though I won’t get my hopes up quite as high for that one.
On a side note, in case this comes up in the comments, no, P-Studio is not really involved in any other projects at Atlus. Originally, yes, P-Studio developed Catherine in between Persona 4(2007) and Persona 5(2016). However, development of the remake, Catherine Full Body, is being headed up by Atlus’ most recent team, Studio Zero, who are also developing a new IP. P-Studio is only lending a little assistance to the development of Catherine Full Body, and as a result the vast majority of their team is working on other projects, namely the Persona dancing games, more than likely Persona 6, and quite possibly remasters or remakes of the older Persona titles. Only time will tell.