Video Game: Persona 4 Arena Ultimax aka: Persona 4 The Ultimate In Mayonaka Arena
The Final Battle Begins!
"Hahahahaha! The P-1 Climax... It's the end of the world, one-on-one death match that's worthy of the name 'climax'! And best of all, if you don't win the one-on-one tournament to the finish within the hour, the world will end! No punches pulled this time!"
— General Teddie
Persona 4: Arena Ultimax, or Persona 4: The Ultimax Ultra Suplex Hold in Japan, is the sequel to Persona 4 Arena. It was released as a Japanese arcade location test in August 2013. A console port for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 was released in Japan on August 28, 2014, with an international release soon afterward.In Persona 4 Arena Ultimax, the characters from Persona 4 and Persona 3 once again find themselves teaming up to face off in the P-1 Climax, a series of battles which must be won before the world ends. The original cast of characters from Persona 3 and 4 are back to discover the mastermind behind the whole tournament, while a few new faces join the fight, including Junpei Iori, Yukari Takeba, Rise Kujikawa, and more. But standing in their way is the dual katana-wielding Sho Minazuki, a huge threat to everyone involved in the P-1 Climax. Worse yet, there's a Sho lookalike who can wield a Persona...New playable characters include:
An Ice Person: Ultimax bumps the number of Ice-Persona users to two, as Chie gains a new ice-themed move.
Another Side, Another Story: The events of the P-1 Climax will alter depending on if you play story mode from the Investigation Team's perspective (Episode P4), The Shadow Operatives' perspective (Episode P3) or Adachi's perspective (Episode Adachi).
Bag of Spilling: If the previews for Ultimax are any indication, the rest of the former members of SEES (Junpei, Yukari and Ken) will avert this and have their ultimate Personas. Koromaru (a dog) is the only exception, but his never transmogrified in the first place.
Call Back: Shadow Yukiko makes one particular call back in Ultimax:
Shadow Yukiko: I have my lacey unmentionables on! I hope you're ready~!
Colon Cancer: 5 titles if we consider the MegaTen outside Japan or 4 if the Megami Ibunroku (the original overtitle of the first game) is used inside Japan. Its long title is Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4: Arena Ultimax for outside Japan and Megami Ibunroku: Persona 4: The Ultimax Ultra Suplex Hold inside Japan.
Damn You, Muscle Memory: Some returning characters had their inputs completely overhauled in Ultimax. Those who spent the time mastering Yosuke's gliding technique now must learn the new sequence. And his kunai? Those migrated to different buttons.
The Dev Team Thinks of Everything: The "real" Shadow Labrys doesn't work like any of the other Shadow characters because in this game it's the actual Labrys with the personality of her Shadow in control.
Enemy Within: Shadow Labrys still exists as personality inside Labrys after Arena due to Labrys already being a Mind Hive, and tries to take control of Labrys body partway through the Persona 3 route. She gives back control soon after, as she was just trying to protect Labrys in her own way.
Evil Knockoff: The sequel introduces Shadow Doppelgangers; copies of the main characters true Shadow Selves created by the Big Bad to slow the heroes down. Doppelgangers have lower attack power and fewer defensive abilities, but have rapid SP gain, constant access to Awakening SP Skills, more health, and the Shadow FrenzySuper Mode (which grants them unlimited SP and special-to-special canceling temporarily).
Hoist by His Own Petard: Sho tries to shut off Labrys mind to take control of her. Instead, this just makes her Shadow's personality, the second strongest "self" inside her, come out and try to kill him.
Hyper Competent Sidekick: Mitsuru's personal assistant / maid Kikuno takes care of most of the logistics for the Shadow Operatives, single-handedly locates and retrieves the Auxiliary team when Mitsuru goes missing, and is trained in piloting a military-grade helicopter.
Labrys: It seem that being a "maid" is a very serious and very difficult occupation.
In Ultimax, Yu got a secret super which plays out exactly like Order-Sol's "Dragon Install Sekkai" super.
This isn't the first SMT game to base a character after the rather unknown Kagutsuchi. Before this, he was also an avatar of YHVH.
Sho has some references to Joker from Persona 2 in that both of his names are spelled in a mix of lower and uppercase letters along with the fact that his Leitmotif is titled "Joker". Add to that that he is working closely with the main antagonist (who in turn is a Suspiciously Similar Substitute to Nyarlathotep).
Not-So-Fake Prop Weapon: Mitsuru's maid Kikuno has a bow made for Yukari based on the "Ultimate Arrow" prop she uses on the TV showFeatherman Victory. However, this one is equipped with an actual Energy Bow.
Rise Kujikawa, who was only an announcer in Arena, becomes playable in Ultimax.
Tohru Adachi, who had a guest appearance in the arcade build of Ultimax, becomes a DLC character in the home console version of the game.
Margaret, who played a supporting role in Arena's story, becomes a DLC character in Ultimax.
Sho Minazuki, who was the Eerie Voice back in Arena, becomes a playable character in Ultimax.
Psychotic Smirk/Slasher Smile: Almost all the Shadow versions of the characters have either one of these expressions on their faces. The only exceptions are Shadow Naoto, who just has a look of disdain, and Shadow Kanji, who is just fabulous.
Rise's story in Ultimax is book-ended by her preparing for shows with "Kanamin Kitchen", the idol group that suddenly disappears in Persona 4: Dancing All Night. You can even see Rise in her Dancing All Night costume in a few cut-scenes.
The prologue of Ultimax's story mode has a person later revealed to be Sho Minazuki refusing a contract with the Velvet Room. Igor however comments that Sho is destined to refine his power, and will eventually return.