So anyway over the weekend I decided to try playing Shin Megami Tensei: IMAGINE – aka the Persona MMORPG. I’ve actually been meaning to try the Japanese version about a month ago but was hesitant because I’d be a noob who wouldn’t understand all the complex kanji in the game. Well luckily that problem was solved because the English version came out not too long ago and over the weekend it opened up to everyone and stopped being closed beta.
What’s interesting about this game is it sort of tries to stay focused on a story. Now maybe to hard core gamers this is to be expected but I’m coming off crap like Ragnarok Online here where the moment you become a noob you grind, change class, grind change class, PVP the end. There probably is a story but because you have to really go out of your way to find it, no one ever bothers to do quests or see what the hell the story is even about. At least with this game, there’s a lot of interesting cut scenes and your quests are sort of divided by “episodes”. Each time you complete an episode you will get some goodies, such as exp and perhaps a new demon.
I’m only level 15 soI don’t know what happens later on but for the first 15 levels your “episode guide” man is Snake. I don’t know if this is some kind of Metal Gear Solid parody or what but in any case he gives you ridiculously hard quests. He also though gives you some nice virtual training to help noobies get the hang of the game, how attacks work and how the skills leveling works.
As always you can add friends as well as party no matter what level you are. However you first must get through the “Home” missions which are introductory missions to help you get a feel of the game. Once you finish Home I and Home II you will get to Home III which will be sort of like your “base grounds” for a while until you head over to the Shinjiku Babel town (which looks a lot nicer and less like an ugly science lab.)
The most interesting part of the game for me is probably the demon summons. Basically you get your “pet demon” (gotta catch em all! 😆 ) who will fight along you but you can control what attacks they do. This gets kinda tricky because you’re sitting there trying to control your mouse and press 2 sets of key rows at the same time. However it can be very helpful, particularly for me, who decided to go the mage/healer path and i get pwned in like 4 hits so I kinda need my own meat shield. Your first mission is to get a fairy and it may look at you with pleading eyes but don’t be fooled, it’s a crappy demon and you should really get the money from Snake for it. (I wish I did now I have a useless fairy in my demon repository.)
So over the weekend JP & I were doing our missions and quests inside of the Suginami Tunnel. It’s like an instance dungeon for you and your party members. We got Kero-chan (Cerberus 😆 ) to help both of us from Snake. Kero-chan’s a useful demon because besides being a good tank, he also can heal and buff the party. Unfortunately he’s only a level 6 demon and once we both got Garm I pretty much didn’t use him after that.
In your early noob quests you will also learn about demon fusion. To make the yellow rock thing seen above I had to combine this chinese dress fairy and a Japanese kodama. It’s really useless particularly for me because I have magic skills and I didn’t need a monster who couldn’t defend me that had “magic skills”. He also died really fast so for the annoying Inugami quest I used Garm to help me anyway. JP needed him though since he is a melee type class.
It seems not everything in this game has been translated. While exploring around I ran into this miner guy who at first was speaking English and then he began babbling in Japanese. 😆 Well that wasn’t a problem for me since I could read most of it but I don’t really know what he was there for. In any case he’s something to come back to with a party next time, I think he’s the guard to an entrance of a mine or something.
In order to complete some abandone waifu quest I had to make my way into Shinjuku Babel. Unfortunately that required running through a Nakano forest which was full of high level aggro monsters. Somehow I managed to avoid them (only getting hit once but my high magic defense helped a lot) and completed the quest there.
The final part of Act III was another cut scene featuring a robot shota which looked a lot like Jun from Persona Trinity Soul. Actually both JP & I used names from that anime (me being Kanaru and him being KanzatoShin). Afterwards we ended up fighting some floating paper and that African tribal beast dude in the 2nd screencap. He’s a lot easier than he looks. I think the quest was probably meant for a party of 10 since there were 10 boxes afterwards, but JP & I were able to do it at level 13 together. In addition this gave us godly amount of exp and we both jumped to level 15 because of it. 😀
Anyway this game is kinda fun so I’ll probably post a game diary every now and then.