YMMV: Persona 3

  • Accidental Innuendo: Would Ryoji please stop talking about being inside of the protagonist!? Especially if playing as the female protagonist, because that can happen.
  • Alternative Character Interpretation:
    • Fanon characterizes the Male Protagonist as a Sugar and Ice Emo Teen and the Female Protagonist as a Stepford Smiler Genki Girl. These characterizations are supported by the manga and drama CDs:
      • Compared to the usual fan interpretation and his characterization in the manga, the male protagonist is surprisingly less stoic and more expressive in the drama CDs, particularly in the second P3P drama CD, where he is shown happily conversing with various friends. Though reserved and still somewhat quiet, he's capable of expressing a number of emotions, including cheerfulness, annoyance, exasperation, anger, alarm and relief. However, he still retains his trademark stoicism, in that his emotive cues aren't readily apparent to others and he rarely voices his opinion on most matters.
      • Much like the male protagonist, the female protagonist is also given a tangible personality in her own drama CD. She's is shown to be significantly more cheerful and energetic than her male counterpart. She even gets angry at one point ("Her mouth is smiling, but her eyes aren't...") and later attempts to pummel Kenji when she loses her temper.
    • Some have theorized that the reason Yukari Took a Level in Jerkass in The Answer was from grief over losing the protagonist. If you maxed your Social Link with her, it'll make it seem all the more justified.
  • Americans Hate Tingle: In the Western fandom, Yukari is a very divisive character. In Japan, however, she's one of the more popular characters in the game. She ranked 20th in a Persona Magazine poll that counted the entire franchise, which is no mean feat. This is likely not assisted by cultural issues in her own game; she's infamously easy to reverse her Social Link if you're playing blind, because in a few places, what would be the natural reaction for most Americans is what you don't want to do in Japan, which is just amplified even further by her own attempts at staying distant until you convince her it isn't necessary.
  • Anti-Climax Boss:
    • Strega can be beaten in a single turn every time you fight them after The Hanged Man they are the only boss fights on full moons, contributing to the Ending Fatigue. Justified in the case of Strega. They're just persona users, not all that different from your party, and you always outnumber them, so there's no particular reason why they should be hard. The game further justifies this by explaining Strega's link to their Persona as something forced and manufactured. Compared to the SEES kids, who all have natural links with their Persona, Strega don't stand a chance.
    • Many of the Full Moon Shadows also come across as sort of pathetic as well, particularly in comparison to the tower guardians inside Tartarus. This is entirely intentional, since the tower guardians give you the opportunity to heal, save the game and prepare your personas before fighting them, while the Full Moon bosses often restrict you to whatever prep work you did the day before. Strength and the Wheel of Fortune in particular are either this or That One Boss depending entirely on how good you are at manipulating the latter's roulette wheel attack.
  • Base Breaker:
  • Breather Boss
    • All of the times you fight the members of Strega require little to no strategy compared to any of the other bosses. Takaya and Jin are fought before the Hanged Man boss fight in November; Chidori is fought alone in the middle of the same month, and you fight Takaya and Jin once more separately before the final boss battle in January. Since they're susceptible to attacking characters' resistances (Jin's fire attacks being used on Junpei and Koromaru in particular) and only attack once per turn, even a somewhat underleveled player can wipe the floor with them with no problems.
    • While the Hanged Man boss itself has an annoying gimmick (the player has to knock out three statues in order to actually attack it, and it can respawn them), the fight itself, compared to prior battles, is fairly straightforward. The Hanged Man mainly uses physical attacks, won't defend itself, and lacks status ailment spells, which basically allows any party to go at it.
    • The Devil Social Link. On top of being one of the only nighttime social links (a boon for the male protagonist, as he only has two of them), you don't need to carry a Devil Arcana Persona to boost points - Tanaka's link will always level up, no matter what responses you choose, and there are no "holdover" visits where the player has to wait. Doggedly doing Tanaka's link allows you to possibly max it out by August. And although there's the issue for Aigis' Metatronius weapon (see below), her own social link will also always level up like Tanaka's, likely because it opens during the final month of the game.
    • In a similar vein, for the female protagonist, although Shinjiro and Ryoji's links are on a one month time limit, both also lack "holdover" visits and will both level up with any response she gives them. Shinjiro is also a nighttime link, which leaves the heroine more room to work on other ones.
  • Broken Base:
    • This along with Persona 4 caused this in the main Atlus fandom, due to how much attention it receives from mainstream audiences over everything else Atlus makes.
    • Exactly how much a sequel this and Persona 4 are to the older games and if they are, whether or not they were planned from the start to be sequels causes this among fans.
    • If The Answer should be considered canon or not.
  • Counterpart Comparison: This game clearly takes cues from Neon Genesis Evangelion. The twelve shadows resemble the seventeen Angels, Aigis resembles Rei Ayanami, Ryoji is essentially Kaworu Nagisa going by another identity, the coming of Nyx resembles Instrumentality, and the protagonist accidentally summoning Thanatos at the beginning of the game greatly resembles when Eva Unit 01 went berserk. Hell, you could even stretch it a bit and say that the protagonist's headphones take after Shinji's SDAT player.
  • Critical Research Failure: A rather funny one in the PSP port. Because Fuuka's lines for the Bonus Boss fight weren't re-recorded from the fight against Elizabeth, when the PC fights against Theodore, Fuuka calls him a "she" at the start of the battle.
  • Crowning Music of Awesome:
  • Die for Our Ship: In essentially any fan fiction with a different character the Protagonist is shipped with, Yukari will be reduced to the Clingy Jealous Girl. Granted, that is how she tends to act in canon... Some see her as the Designated Love Interest, if you find that the scenes with her and the protaganist are rather forced.
  • Dude, Not Funny!: For some, the Hot Springs Incident in Kyoto has shades of this, especially after taking place just after a Wham Episode filled November of Ikutsuki being revealed as the traitorous monster he is, along with shooting Mitsuru's father fatally. The fact that the guys that had no idea what was happening really weren't at fault doesn't help much, even if it is optional. Nor does the fact that Junpei, the Butt Monkey from that scene, loses his girlfriend in one of the biggest Tear Jerkers in the game not even a week later.
  • Early Installment Weirdness: People coming from Persona 4 may be surprised to find that you are unable to control any besides the main character during battle and that none of the male party members have Social Links. The change became so hard to adapt to, that the PSP remake's new mode makes several alterations to make it closer to 4.
  • Ear Worm:
  • Ensemble Dark Horse:
    • Elizabeth, the world's coolest elevator attendant.
    • A notable example is Chihiro, who is just a Social Link, yet gets to return Older and Wiser (and Hotter and Sexier) in Persona 4.
    • Among the party, there's Shinjiro, whose sheer fan popularity might make non-players think he's the main character in the game. Koromaru is given a special spot in most players' hearts (and parties) for general usefulness in combat and coolness.
    • The Female Protagonist from the PSP remake qualifies for the franchise as a whole. Despite only ever appearing in that remake, the stage play, and a drama CD, she manages to have as much (if not more) fanart than the canon male Protagonist who shows up in everything in the franchise.
  • Fanon Discontinuity: Lots of fans dislike The Answer for lots of reasons, from the generally poor decision-making of the characters, to the removal of lots of ambiguity from the ending, to just Cutting Off The Branches in a rather haphazard manner.
  • Fan-Preferred Couple:
    • Protagonist/Aigis and Protagonist/Elizabeth are closely tied in popularity.
    • In the case of Persona 3 Portable, Female Protagonist/Shinjiro due to fact that completing his S.Link actually gives the player the ability to prevent his death. While the female protagonists' canonicity is markedly vague, some official side materials have jumped on this ship: they have some interaction in the Persona 3 Portable CD Drama, and they actually are paired up in the stage play.
    • Female Protagonist/Junpei is also becoming fairly popular in the English fandom despite (or perhaps, because) the fact that he is not dateable.
  • Game Breaker:
    • The Lucifer/Helel Persona when abusing his instant-kill combination attack with the Satan Persona. It also learns Victory Cry at Lv.94, which restores your HP/MP to maximum after every battle and makes spamming Armageddon (which will defeat anything but the Final Boss (only because its multiple life bars, and still drop it last one allowing the player to skip the hell with Night Queen) and Elizabeth in a single hit) even easier. Fixed in FES - Helel no longer learns Victory Cry naturally - and then further nerfed in P3P, in which the combination abilities are items that must be bought with gemstones rather than skills used by having both of the relevant Personas. Still, one can't help but feel a little guilty for just cheesing the Reaper or the final boss with a single use of that hard-earned Armageddon.
    • The Dreamfest combo skill (Succubus+Incubus) borders on this. It has a high-chance of charming (i.e. neutralizing) all enemies, and works on tough encounters and even some sub-bosses.
    • In some instances, Thunder Reign. Anything that doesn't resist/block/absorb/reflect it is guaranteed to get the shocked status effect, and until their next turn, all physical attacks (that they don't block, absorb, or reflect) are guaranteed Critical Hits. So, if you're facing a single opponent whose turn comes after your entire party, you get three successive All-Out Attacks. In which fight can you benefit the most from this? Against The Reaper.
    • Persona 3 Portable is broken in so many ways that it's the perfect game for beginning Megami Tensei players. It's perhaps because of the below features that Maniac difficuty was added:
      • The game lets you directly control allies, unlike the PS2 editions. No more wrangling with Artificial Stupidity. Most preexisting bosses were not rebalanced to accomodate this, which makes several of them a joke.
      • You can obtain Skill Cards, which can teach any Persona you have a new skill. To make them even more broken, there is a card duplication service at the shrine. The process takes five days, but is completely free. Some of the Skill Cards you can get include even even high-end skills like Prayer and the element Absorb skills.
      • Your condition no longer changes during dungeon exploration; it only changes after you leave. Feel free to complete as much of the currently-available portion of Tartarus as you want in a single night; the worst that happens is that you'll be "Sick" for two days when you exit.
      • Run out of SP while exploring? No problem! The clock provides full-party healing for cheap.
      • Sometimes when fusing a persona you'll receive a persona that's holding an item, usually an accessory. By raising that persona until it learns its final skill it will give you that item. By registering a persona that's holding an item just before it levels up to that point, you can resummon it as many times as you like and get multiple copies of whatever that item is. This is an easy way to make large amounts of money in the early game. The same process can actually be used to obtain multiple skill cards from the same persona.
  • Good Bad Bugs: There's a famous exploit in the original game and FES where pausing the game causes the on-field enemies to change which direction they're moving. Doing so makes it incredibly easy to manipulate the enemies into turning themselves away from you so you can attack them from behind and get an advantage. Unfortunately it was fixed in 4 and Portable.
  • Hell Is That Noise: Five words: "Be careful! I sense Death!" Or, worse still, the quiet jingling of chains that signals the Reaper's approach.
  • He's Just Hiding: The Fanbase believed this about the main character until the release of FES which revealed that he did in fact die, at least physically. However, Elizabeth states she's trying to find a way to bring him back in Persona 4 Arena.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • Chihiro's S-Link ending in FES is her outraging at the article against a Student Teacher Romance saying that love is important, no matter what age. Now what is the Justice S-Link in Portable again?
    • In PSP remake, one of Ken's S-Links mentions a manga about an alien who takes different forms to save the day. Although this is only in the female MC's playthrough, this is funny considering the male MC's voice actor's other role.
    • Ken is represented with the Justice tarot in the remake, which contains a lot of members of the Divine race from the main game. Beta Johnathan actually looks a lot like an older version of him and he represents the Law alignment - which all of the Divine race is in.
    • Ken drinking milk to get taller becomes funny considering that he hit a sudden growth spurt in between this game and Ultimax - he was right about the milk!
  • Ho Yay: So much... it even has its own page!
  • Idiot Ball: While Yukari's knee-jerk reaction to go back to the past to bring the protagonists back to life in The Answer can be chalked up to Love Makes You Crazy (hardly excusable in itself), Mitsuru, of all people, decides to support her, with everyone else either choosing the present (Akihiko and Ken; while Junpei and Koromaru also agree to this, they're more worried about everyone fighting each other) or focusing on why the Abyss of Time exists/is indecisive, but knows it's not a good idea (Aigis and Fuuka). Why does Mitsuru want to possibly put the world back into danger and possibly bring back things like Nyx, which is something that she wanted to get rid of to restore her family's tarnished name? Because Yukari comforted her when her father was killed, so she wants to return the favor. You'd think she'd return that favor in a saner way. Not only that, but Mitsuru doing this is never really addressed, and when Yukari breaks down about missing the protagonist, everyone comforts her and forgives her, despite her being incredibly insensitive and rude towards them in the beginning (namely pointing out Shinjiro's death to Akihiko.
  • Internet Backdraft:
    • The canonicity of the female main character and her path in Persona 3 Portable. You have fans that point to The Answer and The Reveal from Margaret in Persona 4 as proof that the FeMC route never happened, while other fans counter that since FES and P4 were written prior to P3P they can't be used as proof of anything related to the female PC. Then you have other fans using The Amala Network as a way to explain that she could exist, just not in the same universe as the Male Main Character. The debates were much larger in the weeks leading up to the release of the game, and still persist to this day. Persona 4 Arena has made the debate a moot point, with the Male MC being the reaffirmed as "canon" main character.
  • Iron Woobie: Akinari is so positive during his last days.... Even more so if you complete his S-Link, and his soul comes in to cheer for you in the last battle.
  • It's Popular, Now It Sucks: This along with Persona 4 was what made the Shin Megami Tensei games mainstream in the West. Atlus has since build a franchise around the two titlesnote  The more hardant old-school SMT fans didn't quite like this.
  • Memetic Badass: You've gotta be a chiseled Badass to eat Fuuka's cooking. You must also obtain Badass status to initiate a social link with Ken as the Female Protagonist.
  • Memetic Mutation: BURN MY BREAD! (in reference to the improper english in vocal songs by Yumi Kawamura)
    • Ken Amada: Fans have taken to calling his shorts "shota shorts".
    • Marin Karin!
    • The whole concept of "I shoot myself in the head and a monster comes out."
    • Junpei/Stupei Iori, Ace Detective/Defective
      • Bringing you another installment of "Junpei's Believe it or don't."
    • Aigis: I NEED YOUR HALP!
    • Akihiko: I've been WAITING for this!
    • Shinjiro: Adios asshole!
  • Moe:
    • The manga made the main character very adorable. Justlookat him. Ryoji too.
    • Fuuka so very much, she's the most gentle and sweet of the female characters. It's even lampshaded by Junpei at one point in which he states "She's the kind of girl you want to protect".
    • Chihiro. Every quirk of her personality, and every stage of her Social Link brings her adorableness score even higher. Such a shame she sheds her Moe traits by Persona 4.
  • Mondegreen:
    • Burn my dread: Last battle.
    Burrrrn rye Bread!
    It's a man's man no-one's ever survived, invisible hands are behind you just that if you ever win that rage against race that you became now because it's no man's land.
    Mask is in heavy rain now ultimately slain make shadows slave what we've done now is in vain make your voice seven twenty four seven but you gotta live it persecuted hot headed
    comes from direction, indication you've got tutu Let it out Let it down Let it inside Let loose Letting letting damn depressed Let's get it up
    Then whatcha gotta do is drop behind the town Drop rhyme drop hammer Digging like a labor You've got blood all volvo
    Ash all Volvo Spit it out son game's over
    buuurrrrn my bread!
    • The music for the town map during most of the game:
    I never felt like... the taste of red meat...
    It's a way kinda peace out face reality never be chattin' tea the enemy
    Your body covers hole society chamber bodies down here gonna fight
    Right here shadow 10 o' clock erection seize the moment it's your negation
    Across no bullshit any motication pick up now and denim arrive
    Bounce up arounds get out before lower round like a roller stone covered in grout
    Watch out below 'cause this about this out this Sonic Bomb's goin' ground it's a roundup
    Don't be suitcase 'cause enemy's poodle formin' a troop that ain't your troop
    You're the only one one one one go up like a batter go zone shadows of Mass Destruction
    • Persora: the Golden Best is an official CD for the Mondegreens of the Japanese fandom.
  • Moral Event Horizon: Strega (especially one particular, long-haired member) crosses this as soon as he kills someone affected by the Dark Hour.
  • Most Annoying Sound:
  • Narm: Fuuka's Dull Surprise voice acting can lead to a few moments like this. She gets better in The Answer, but that just leads to a whole new set of problems when the "I'm mildly surprised by everything" voice acting from the old lines frequently contrasts with the more flat and matter-of-fact delivery of the new lines.
  • Never Live It Down:
    • Expect anything to do with Ken to have people complaining about Shinjiro.
    • A large portion of the fanbase judges Yukari purely based on her actions in The Answer.
    • Mitsuru also gets it to a lesser extent. Her joining Yukari in going back to prevent the Protagonist's death, risking the revival of Nyx has led some to believe that her intellect has become an Informed Attribute, despite this being her only Idiot Ball moment.
  • No Yay: Spending a long time with Ken Amada but subverted in that the scene is up to the player's imagination. A straighter version is the female protagonist and Takaya. Or the male protagonist and Takaya. Although, the Minako/Ken ship is popular with fans of shotacon.
  • Paranoia Fuel: Normal people do not remember the Dark Hour... which means it could be really happening every night and you'd never know. The Shadows can pull people into the Dark Hour whenever they want and the victim is powerless to do anything to stop it. This means they can kill you at any time. Sleep tight. Enjoy the next full moon!
  • Player Punch:
    • Shinjiro's death on October 4, right after the day's accompanying Full Moon boss. Followed by a Player Kick Them While They're Down at his funeral, when a few classmates talk smack about him. The game gives you an option that amounts to telling them to shut the fuck up.
    • The Final Boss. You finally have the power to defeat it, in the form of a battle skill. Just one very major problem though: the cost of the skill is all of your HP!
  • Polished Port: Portable, in spite of removing rendered cutscenes, is lauded for removing a lot of sources of Fake Difficulty (such as lack of direct ally control and allowing the player to resume exploring Tartarus from the exact floor they left off) and adding a bunch of new content.
  • Porting Disaster: The PSN version of FES initially suffered from several emulation problems, such as the game failing to save or just deleting your saved games when you try to load, freezing, and lots of texture flickering. This has thankfully been patched.
  • Rescued from the Scrappy Heap
    • If a character you hate has a social link, chances are, you'll end up growing on them. Ken is more well liked in the portable version due to this. Evidently, it's more easier to find fanart and fanfics of him with Minako than standalone fan work of him.
    • Many detractors of Junpei (either because of his personality, or because the player ends up running into a long string of boss fights who exploit his weakness early on) find that he gets a lot better after he meets Chidori (and also because he serves as one of the few voices of reason in The Answer.) And if the player is willing to stick with keeping him leveled after the aforementioned boss fights, he turn into a formidable heavy hitter (and the player will probably have access to skills to cover his weakness by then.)
    • Mitsuru was fairly popular as a character, but never used in gameplay by most players due to her Artificial Stupidity. With the PSP remake alowing players to directly control her (thus avoiding her spamming of certain spells) she was suddenly finding herself on many teams.
    • Despite the general... disagreement with Yukari Takeba in the west, there's a surprising amount of (western) fans who welcome her inclusion in the update for Persona 4 Arena.
    • Ken's inclusion in Persona 4 Arena has also been positively received, though he's more of a Base Breaker than fully rescued.
  • Ron the Death Eater:
    • Probably the biggest reason why Ken is seen as a scrappy. Some people hate Ken just for hating and wanting to kill Shinjiro, despite having (albeit disproportionate) reasons for doing so. A fair amount of people ignore the fact that Shinjiro actually is accountable for the death of Ken's mother. In fact, some fans blame Ken entirely for Shinjiro's death. Despite the fact that Shinjiro voluntarily died for him without Ken asking him to. And many would have preferred that Ken died instead. And they seem to completley forget Takaya, you know, the guy who actually killed Shinjiro. While Ken had admittedly put Shinjiro and him in the situation, it isn't exactly 100% his fault.
    • If This Very Wiki, and other sites, are any indication, then Yukari might as well be regarded as the TRUE villain of the whole franchise... Particularly, people begrudge her for her attitude during The Answer. While she does come off as more abrasive and irrational, griefstricken people aren't entirely known for being 100% stable. These same people will also conveniently forget that Yukari does work to make amends for her earlier behavior and works to become Aigis' friend to make up for her earlier jerky behavior.
  • The Scrappy:
    • Fuuka and Natsuki are disliked for their grating English voices, which isn't helped at all by the lack of the same extensive Character Development found in, for example, Junpei.
    • The one most disliked, however, would be Ken Amada, due to his similarly uncharismatic English voice acting, vehement dislike for Shinjiro (the dub even made it more explicit - see Jerkass Woobie below), claims that he's out of place in the cast (despite a dog and robot being on the team) inclusion as a romance option (unless you like shotacon), rather average combat stats, a balanced skill-set that is outclassed by other characters - with his one specialty being useless for bosses -and can be done more easily with the protagonist, and gradual lack of prominence after his confrontation with Shinjiro. His P3P incarnation, on the other hand, is much more well-liked, due to giving him a role beyond being Demoted to Extra by making him a Social Link evidently, it's much more easier to find fanart of him with the female protagonist than standalone art of him.
    • When it comes to social links, Kenji is easily the most disliked one. His attraction to older women comes off as annoying more than anything, and he doesn't get any meaningful character development. It doesn't help that his counterpart in Portable is Junpei.
    • Nozomi is also disliked for being a creepy Gonk (though he does get some Hidden Depths) and one long Church of Happyology joke, while Mamoru is considered to be extremely dull. Their Portable counterparts are Shinjiro and Akihiko, respectively, and to go further, along with Saori (the female protagonist's Hermit social link, and a completely new character unlike Rio), Nozomi and Mamoru are the only Social Link characters who don't appear in any of the Drama CDs.
  • Scrappy Mechanic:
    • If the main character drops, it's an instant game over. Hand Waved with a very late explanation.
    • Random chance light and dark insta-kill abilities. Most of the time they'll miss. Sometimes they'll hit and knock other party members unconscious. If it hits you, you'd better have a Homunculus item (which is not obtainable by the time you first encounter it).
    • In combination to the above two, Portable adds the fact that when your allies get hit by these attacks, they will use one of your very rare Homunculi to survive it, despite the fact you can simply revive them afterwards and if YOU die, then it's game over.
    • In the original and FES update you didn't have direct control over the party. This is thankfully fixed in the PSP remake.
    • In order to lock down the very powerful skills in the PSP remake, they converted them to Fetch Quests - you now have to grind on shadows to get enough of a certain type of gem to drop.
    • The FES expansion basically forces Level Grinding upon the player if they want to finish it.
    • Want to level up the Hermit Social Link on the male protagonist's route? Have fun spending the entire day, including nighttime, doing so for one session!
  • Sequel Displacement:
    • Persona 3 and 4 are credited with singlehandedly popularizing the rest of the Shin Megami Tensei franchise outside of Japan. The PSP re-releases of Persona1 and Persona2 were generally well received, but neither had anything near the sales of the sequels.
    • FES also did this to the original game, with its many improvements and additions to the original game and The Answer epilogue. The PSP remake might have done this to FES with the female main character's storyline.
  • Shocking Swerve: The Reveal about Ikutsuki, which came completely out of left-field for some.
  • Sidetracked by the Gold Saucer: Many players forget to train their combat in an effort to do well on Exams.
  • Spiritual Licensee: This Kotaku article makes the claim that Persona 3 can be considered a video game adaptation of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, with each character from Persona 3 compared to a character from Buffy.
  • That One Attack:
    • Night Queen, the final boss's most powerful attack, which it will only use once it has only a remaining third of HP of its fourteenth lifebar. It deals massive Almighty damage to the party, and has the capability of inflicting any status effect on the party. Worst case scenario, if one or more of your party members is killed, charmed, enraged or inflicted with fear, you have pretty much no hope of victory at this point. If just the protagonist is enraged or charmed, it can be just as bad if the protagonist had a persona that healed, since then YOU can end up FULLY healing (*6000* HP) the FinalBoss, or getting your team in a nearly hopeless position depending on the tactics you had on them when you got enraged and can't heal the team. That Nyx Avatar mix things up with Moonless Gown, which allows it to repel everything you throw at it for a few turns, you can potentially end up screwing yourself over depending on how everything goes.
    • The Hermit boss battle. Giga spark. If you don't have every party member equipped with thunder charms (and even then it has a one in a hundred chance of working), the battle is all but impossible.
  • That One Boss:
    • This being an Atlus game, most of the bosses are very tough, but Sleeping Table deserves a special mention. Megidola and Maragidyne (ma-spells hit all posible targets, and Megidola is a second-level Almighty - thus unresistable and very powerful - spell), plus Hamaon, Evil Touch (inflicts Fear) and Ghastly Wail (unblockable, instantly kills any character with Fear.) You know it's bad when you're praying that it just spams its One-Hit Kill and misses. A lot of the Tartarus bosses can fall into this category, especially compared to the Full Moon Shadows, but the Table is the standout example.
    • The Chariot and Justice dual boss, especially if you're not playing Portable version which lets you control your non-MC party members. They've both got very strong attacks. Justice's are multi-hits while Chariot's have added status effects (which often result in criticals from Justice's attacks). No big deal, just deal with the problem one at a time, right? Well, no. Because if you're unlucky enough to kill one of them and the other's turn comes along, he'll use Samerecarm to bring his partner back to life at full health. So if you don't lower both of their hp at the same time (and/or are really unlucky) you run the risk of starting the entire fight over again.
    • Nyx Avatar is this to a lot of players despite being the Final Boss due the sheer length of the fight and reasons mentioned above.
  • That One Level: It's generally agreed upon that Harabah is the hardest portion of Tartarus, what with it being dark and the only light coming from moving rainbow circles, which is hard to look at and makes Shadows nigh-impossible to see. Empyrean is a possible contender in The Answer, what with pretty much every enemy having either Mahamaon or Mamudoon.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character: In the original game, all of your male party members lack Social Links, with their arcana being represented by a similar non-playable character instead. While they still get plenty to do during the plot, it makes the player feel much less close to them than they're supposedly supposed to be. It doesn't help that the characters filling in for them in their Social Links tend to simply be more generic versions of them, making several Social Links seem almost redundant. This is remedied somewhat in Portable, as the female protagonist has Social Links with every playable character (even the one who dies after about one month).
    • Ikutsuki. You'd think that after The Reveal, he'd be the game's Big Bad. Instead, he quickly gets killed off.
  • Uncanny Valley: Ken's 3D model. The smile on his face is just too wide.
  • That One Sidequest: Certain Social Links.
    • Mitsuru's (Empress) Social Link doesn't begin until November (third-to-last month in the game), and your Academics need to be maxed out (while all of your attributes should be maxed out well beforehand, Academics takes the longest time, and it's possible to not have it maxed) and it's also required to score the highest results on at least one exam (which is dependent on your Academics stat toonote ). She's also only available two days of the week (Tuesday and Thursday). If there is one Social Link that most players wind up not finishing, it's usually hers.
    • Hidetoshi, the Emperor link, is generally considered one of the most difficult male links to max out. He's the only fellow classmate who will never call to hang out on weekends, limiting the time you can see him, and his link progresses faster earlier on if you approve of his boarderline Knight Templar tendancies. (A Genre Savvy player will realise he's going to have Character Development later, and he does, but until then you have to take his side no matter how jerkish that seems, which goes against the norm for Social Link responses.)
    • Aigis (Aeon, only in FES and Portable) is even worse in that regard; it opens in January, which you only get if you choose to let Ryoji live. You fight the Final Boss by the very end of that month, so you're on a very limited time span to complete hers as well. Complicating things further, the Ultimate Persona of the Aeon Arcana (Metatron), which only can be fused after completing the Social Link in the current or a previous run-through, can be fused with a Nihil Weapon to obtain the best gun of the game for Aigis (Metatronius). Considering that the Antiques Store takes two days to complete it, this leaves a very, very small window of opportunity to get the weapon on the first playthrough.
    • In both FES and the original version, social links with the female characters are even more complicated. After a certain point in each dateable girl's Social Link(which generally occurs between ranks 5 and 7), you're in a "serious" relationship with that girl. Pleasing one means upsetting the other and woe is him if he double-booked and ended up canceling a date. The "jealousy" mechanics was removed on Portable though.
    • The female protagonist's links are both easier and harder at the same time; she has more links open at night, but two of them are on a one-month time limit (the Moon for Shinjiro, and Fortune for Ryoji); Ryoji in particular has to be hung out with whenever you are given the chance to do so. If you miss one opportunity, the link will simply stop progressing. It also trips you up because of a large gap between Rank 9 and MAX - choosing to let him live maxes it out, and that's at the end of December.
    • Right up there with them is trying to become Akihiko's Love Interest in his link; unlike Shinjiro, Ken and Ryoji, Akihiko's romance route requires triggering multiple flags that you likely won't know of without a guide, and mucking up even one keeps their relationship strictly platonic. What's more, the link freezes at Rank 7 with no indication of when it can restart if you get there before October (it coincides with Shinjiro's death), and it's possible to break his link altogether, although only if you do manage to romance him and reject him.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic: Concerning October 4th, Ken. Despite whatever reasons he had or the circumstances of the day, many Shinjiro fans ignore them and hate him for the whole ordeal. Considering that the latter is an Ensemble Darkhorse, well...
  • Woolseyism:
    • The original titles of The Journey and The Answer were Episode Yourself and Episode Aigis in Japan. It's generally agreed that altering them from the Engrish-happy Japanese names to names that have thematic importance to the content within them was an improvement. In a similar vein, the very ominous-sounding Dark Hour in the localization was originally named the very generic "Shadow Time" in the Japanese version.
    • As mentioned above (see mythology gag) the Devil Busters/Innocent Sin Online is almost completely changed. Y-ko mearly speaks with an accent, the english version changed this to Maya using 1337 speak, offering a better contrast between her online persona and her real life composition teacher self.
    • Aigis in Japanese uses a very generic and to the point speaking style when first introduced but as she becomes more humanized starts to drop this in favor of speaking regular Japanese. Since this can't be done with English, the US version has her speak in a robotic monotone at first and gradually start to talk like a normal girl as she becomes more human.
    • In the Updated Re-release, Persona 3 Portable, Ken, the Jailbait Adorably Precocious Child, is a romance option with a "spend the night" event at S-Link level 10. This was heavily edited in the US version.
  • The Woobie: Akinari, Mitsuru, and Shinjiro are prime examples, but pretty much everyone in SEES is a woobie. The Protagonist after his Heroic Sacrifice, especially if you characterized him specifically.