Sony’s store for the PS4 currently has a Big In Japan sale, and Atlus’ Persona 5 and Square Enix’s Dragon Quest XI are both included. These are the console’s two best JRPGs, but you should avoid the temptation of buying them (even for the discounted prices).
Persona 5 was released back in 2017, and it’s my favourite PlayStation 4 title. The turn-based combat is traditional but fresh, the visuals ooze style, the narrative is charming and dark, and the social links are – as usual – the highlight.
Meanwhile, Dragon Quest XI is a perfect JRPG. For those who were miffed about Final Fantasy 15 turning its back on the genre to appease a new and more mainstream audience, Dragon Quest XI is the quintessential Square Enix title to get your JRPG fix.
However, although Persona 5 and Dragon Quest XI are the PlayStation 4’s two best JRPGs, you shouldn’t buy them despite the attractive prices.
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Big in Japan – don’t buy Persona 5 or Dragon Quest XI
For those who - for whatever illogical reason - haven’t yet played Persona 5 and Dragon Quest XI on PlayStation 4, you should avoid the temptation of buying them now they’re on sale. Yes, if you’re inexperienced with JRPGs the sale is a great way to try something new without feeling robbed, but you’d still be better off waiting until later this year and 2020.
As you’ll already know if you’ve been following news about Persona 5, Atlus recently unveiled a Golden-like soft remake titled Persona 5 The Royal. This will introduce a plethora of new additions and features including an additional Phantom Thief, human Morgana, a bonus social link, and extra places to explore in Tokyo.
It’s coming out sometime in 2020 for the west, and you should wait for its release instead of buying Persona 5 or Persona 5 The Ultimate Edition. Atlus’ title is unashamedly long-winded, and it’d be a mistake to play it so close to Persona 5 The Royal’s launch (you wouldn’t want to play Persona 5 and Persona 5 The Royal back-to-back as the extension will largely repeat a lot of lengthy scenes and storylines).
The same logic applies to Dragon Quest XI. Square Enix is releasing a similar sort of extension in Fall 2019 on the Nintendo Switch and it adds the possibility for players to marry whoever they want, in addition to a boatload of more features. The developer and publisher are unsure if Dragon Quest XI: Echoes Of An Elusive Age S will eventually come to PlayStation 4, but if you have a Nintendo Switch you’d be far better off waiting for its release.
Instead of buying Persona 5 and/or Dragon Quest XI, the JRPG you should try (if you haven't) is Ni No Kuni II: Revenant Kingdom. It’s not quite as good as its predecessor, but it’s still a charming and heart-warming experience with tons of content and likable characters. And – as far as I’m aware – there is no extended cut scheduled for launch in the near future.
PlayStation's Big In Japan sale ends May 15 at 23:59.
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