* AdaptationDisplacement: Shin Megami Tensei spun-off from the original Megami Tensei, which was based on the ''Literature/DigitalDevilStory'' series of books.
* BaseBreaker: Lucifer's been called a heroic revolutionary, a despicable SocialDarwinist, and everything in between. A common debate among fans is whether he's actually morally better than YHVH or if he's just better at selling his pitch; he is the [[ConsummateLiar Father of Lies]], after all.
* BrokenBase:
** Alignments. Game of choice. There's a ''lot'' to argue over.
** The ''Persona'' sub-series. Many of its fans are unaware of the main series, and some of the few that do bash the games for [[FanDumb not being more like Persona]], much to the [[ItsPopularNowItSucks ire of the main series fans]]. There are some people that even love the games but still hate them for their overshadowing popularity.
** The way fusion is handled in ''VideoGame/DevilSurvivor'', ''VideoGame/DevilSurvivor2'', ''VideoGame/{{Persona 4}} Golden'', and ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiIV''. Some complain that part of the fun of fusion is unpredictable RNG result and that being able to choose exactly which skills to pass on to the fusion result makes for a boring and excessively forgiving gameplay experience. Others see it as a great AntiFrustrationFeature and point out that in practice, random skill inheritance boils down to tediously rerolling fusions over and over just to get the skills the player wants.
* CashCowFranchise: The Persona Spinoffs, more specifically ''VideoGame/{{Persona 3}}'' and ''VideoGame/{{Persona 4}}'' have become some of Atlus' most popular properties. They got so popular they even started to drop the "Shin Megami Tensei" label.
* CompleteMonster: [[VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiStrangeJourney Captain Jack]]; [[VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiII Archangels Uriel, Raphael, and Michael]].
* CrossesTheLineTwice: Many things, but Mara stands out. A GagPenis in a golden chariot is one thing. However, the games have made a habit of spewing out puns whenever Mara's around. And then there are the times where Mara's ''stats'' contain puns...
* CrowningMomentOfAwesome: [[Awesome/ShinMegamiTensei Go check]].
* CrowningMusicOfAwesome: [[AwesomeMusic/ShinMegamiTensei Here]].
* DracoInLeatherPants: There is ''nothing'' wrong with liking Chaos. Remember, though - that's the side that, while wanting to preserve Humanity, was the one to put the [[MoralEventHorizon Z-Class]] ApocalypseHow on the table or desires a Social Darwinst[[note]]and by Social Darwinist we mean 'rule by the person most capable of killing everyone around them'[[/note]] world with no restraint whatsoever. Just saying.
** It really depends on the game rather than those two being the only options. Chaos is portrayed far more positively in Devil Summoner 2 [[spoiler:Lucifer and his manipulations aside]] and not every game wants a world of Social Darwinism. Not to mention the [[SadisticChoice choice is between a Z-Class or endless cycle of X-Class]] ApocalypseHow till all of humanity's free will is taken away by [[GodIsEvil God]].
** If you were wondering what the above spoiler means, [[spoiler: it refers to the fact that Lucifer tricks a young man, trying to save his sister from a FateWorseThanDeath, into kick-starting the apocalypse, while at the same time defacing the timeline. On the other hand, the original timeline's implied to be ''ShinMegamiTenseiI'', [[CrapsackWorld of all places]]...]]
** Long story short, Lucifer's interest in Humanity has varied widely, and it's still the matter of intense debate. There's a ''reason'' half of everything he does belongs to the YMMV tab. Unwelcome meddler or radiant savior? And let's not even ''start'' with Law...
** Probably doesn't help that Lucifer is turned into a good character in SMT2, and siding with him arguable has the best ending, but his actions are a lot more questionable in the rest of the series
* DrinkingGame: [[DrinkingGame/ShinMegamiTensei here]]. This being a NintendoHard franchise, prepare to drink ''a lot.''
* EnsembleDarkhorse: Black Frost. He's an [[DiscOneNuke excellent early/mid-game demon/Persona]], and is a [[spoiler: party leader in some routes of ''Devil Survivor''.]]
** Mara, aside form the Jacks, might be the most popular demon in the franchise due to... [[GagPenis you]] [[StealthPun know]].
** Matador, as a result of ''Nocturne'''s rerelease, went from an average Fiend to one of the most infamous bosses in any Atlus game. There's a [[WakeUpCallBoss VERY good reason]] he's the picture of Atlus's That One Boss page.
* FandomHeresy: Stating that you like Law factions and what they stand for is a good way to have series fans breathing down your neck. Ironic, given that in many games with a Law-Neutral-Chaos axis, going ''Neutral'' is what leads to the PathOfMostResistance.
* FreudWasRight: [[http://megamitensei.wikia.com/wiki/Arioch Arioch]]'s... [[VaginaDentata stomach-mouth...]] thing.
* FridgeHorror: It's [[WordOfGod been explained]] that God is not the source of all evil in the series, and that something in the Universe is causing God to be Evil. Okay, um, what could be ''so'' ''evil'' that it makes God (y'know, the guy who made ''everything'') evil?
** Even worse. According to Christianity, God's very nature is ''love itself''. What in the name of everything holy could possibly have corrupted ''love incarnate''?
*** Maybe too many people hating and killing in its name? Worse: believing that they do good and what they feel is love? This world runs on GodsNeedPrayerBadly. -> HumansAreBastards.
*** However, this could also be a reflection of exactly ''what's'' wrong with him creating KnightTemplar Angels as well. As SMTII makes it clear that the Archangels own psychotic belief can give rise to a [[ClapYourHandsIfYouBelieve fake YHVH]]. If their own belief can create a fake one, then doesn't it stand to reason that angels in general can make God fit their view of their creator?
* GameBreaker: Has [[http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/GameBreaker/ShinMegamiTensei its own page]].
* HoYay: Meet ''Persona''. Meet ''Nocturne''. If it's MegaTen, there's porn of it. Usually in this variety.
* ItsHardSoItSucks: A complaint from a lot of JRPG enthusiasts, particularly that the difficulty is [[FakeDifficulty not particularly well-designed]] or [[LuckBasedMission dependent on player skill]].
* ItsPopularNowItSucks: ''Persona'' has been receiving this treatment by main fans recently.
* MemeticMutation: Rated M for Mara[[labelnote:Explanation]]Games featuring the GagPenis demon Mara tend to receive an automatic ESRB "M" (Mature) rating when exported to North America, even if the rest of the game content only warrants a "T" (Teen) rating. For example, ''VideoGame/DevilSurvivor'' and ''VideoGame/DevilSurvivor2'' feature characters getting killed on-screen with pools of blood, or being murdered in other brutal ways, like getting blown up or knocked down a flight of stairs, but Mara is not present. Both games are rated "T". ''VideoGame/PersonaQShadowOfTheLabyrinth'' features a SuperDeformed visual style and your typical dungeon crawler fare, and features Mara. It is rated "M".[[/labelnote]]
* MemeticMolester: Mara, due to being a [[GagPenis penis]] demon that spits out {{Double Entendre}}s as {{Pre Asskicking One Liner}}s.
* MemeticSexGod: On the other hand, Mara is also seen as this, being almost literally a sex god, as it represents {{lust}}, among other worldly desires.
* MorePopularSpinOff: '''Persona'''
* MyRealDaddy: Kazuma Kaneko and his artwork. The series just wouldn't have been the same without it. The series actually received some fire for the announcement that Masayuki Doi, who has done art/coloring/other work for Atlus games would be doing character art. Several Sentai plus other artists would be doing new demon art for ''Videogame/ShinMegamiTenseiIV''.
* MST3KMantra: Satan is based on the Jewish view of Satan, the QuirkyMinibossSquad has the Catholic Uriel and Raphael, and [[spoiler:only a few people will be allowed into the Millennium Kingdom]] in ShinMegamiTenseiII, which mirrors (the Hollywood version of) Jehovah's Witness teachings. Thor, Narukami and various other thunder gods [[AllMythsAreTrue co-exist]] and move on.
** And to make it even more confusing? ''Uriel actually isn't a Catholic figure.'' He comes from other sources that no major version of the Bible accepts as canon.
* ParanoiaFuel: An integral part of many of the ''VideoGame/{{Persona}}'' games.
* TheScrappy: General consensus is that while Chaos is a radical philosophy that has a number of nasty problems, Law is just straight-up ''bad''. You'll see a lot of people rooting for Neutral and Chaos, and rarely anyone who likes Law. This extends to their supporters; the Messians in ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiI'' and ''[[VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiII II]]'', Amane in ''VideoGame/DevilSurvivor'', [[spoiler:Zelenin and the Three Wise Men]] in ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiStrangeJourney'', and Jonathan and [[spoiler:Merkabah]] in ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiIV''. [[InternetBackdraft Support these individuals at your own peril.]]
** It's gotten to the point where Atlus seems to know, as ''Strange Journey'' gives us [[spoiler:Mastema]], a Law representative who's revealed to be so utterly evil on the Chaos route there's no way it was unintentional. Though [[TookALevelInKindness he did clean up his act next game...]]
* SequelDisplacement: The series is called Shin Megami Tensei, ignoring the first two games (Digital Devil Story: Megami Tensei and Digital Devil Story: Megami Tensei II).
** Before ShinMegamiTensei, there were two games for the Famicom called Megami Tensei (the first was adapted from the first novel of the ''Literature/DigitalDevilStory'' series of novels). Few outside of Japan have heard of them, and even in Japan the number of gamers who came of age during the 90s and 00s who've actually played those games (or read the novel) are increasingly few in number.
** ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiIIINocturne'' was not the first game released with the ''Shin Megami Tensei'' supertitle in the west. The largely forgotten Demi Kids games also had it (in small text) and predate Nocturne's release in the west by a year.
* StopHavingFunGuy:
** This being a NintendoHard franchise, there are many players who, while being experienced and proficient with the series, fail to see why the games are so hard and dismiss anyone complaining about ''x'' [[ThatOneBoss boss]] or ''y'' [[ThatOneLevel dungeon]] to be an idiot.
** In games that have an easy difficulty, playing on those easy modes is a FandomBerserkButton, and is often met with responses along the lines of "Atlus games are supposed to be unfair!"
* ThatOneAttack: Any spell with the "Megido-" prefix. It must mean [[NintendoHard "fuck your life"]] in some other language.
** [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mount_Megiddo In a way, it does.]] That series of spells is named for the mountain where Armageddon will supposedly be fought.
** This extends to any Almighty attack, really (the Megido are the main spells but not the only ones).
** ''Devil Survivor'' takes it UpToEleven by adding the -dyne suffix. As if Megidolaon wasn't bad enough, [[spoiler: BonusBoss Lucifer]] can drop Megidoladyne on the ''entire map''. And did I mention that it gets 50% more powerful with each hit?
*** Then others like Strange Journey throws fuel on the fire by planting new spells in that are of the same type. Thought Megidolaon was awesome? Add in Big Bang which is even more powerful by a good 200 points. Then we have Babylon Goblet which has a chance to charm. Good luck recovering from that. And god forbid you get the eponymous JIHAD because not only is it one of the strongest spells in the game, but it also LOWERS THEIR STATS TOO. But to be fair while you have those, you can bet your opponent has even better shit than you.
* ThatOneBoss: [[WakeUpCallBoss Matador]] and Mot in Nocturne, the golden metal trio in ''VideoGame/{{Persona 2}}'', Intrepid Knight in ''VideoGame/{{Persona 3}}'', anyone in ''VideoGame/DigitalDevilSaga'' with the second boss theme and probably a few more. Of course, if you don't use all of the options that are available to you like ailment inducing ammo, buff and debuff skills, buff and debuff cancelling skill, healing skills, elemental and ailments immunity to at least some of the bosses attacks, then expect lot of bosses to suddenly turn into NintendoHard ThatOneBoss. You know what, let's just tell you we have [[ThatOneBoss/{{Atlus}} ThatOneBoss/Atlus]] (where Shin Megami Tensei makes up most of the article) and leave it at that.
* UncannyValley: Part of the series' aesthetic. While it remains distinctly {{manga}}, the characters tend to share the same grayish skin color and nearly all share the distinctive eye design.
** This was noticeably absent in VideoGame/DevilSurvivor and the later installments of the Persona series, both of which used a more manga, cartoony style, that severely contrasted with all the NightmareFuel of the game.
*** Both of those series had different character designers for the human characters, while keeping Kazuma Kaneko's demon/persona designs. Kaneko is responsible for the human character designs in all the main series Shin Megami Tensei games except [[VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiIV IV]], as well as DDS and the Raidou games.
* UglyCute: Some of the demons that aren't [[OurMonstersAreDifferent mind-bogglingly strange]] or {{Stripperific}} demon babes could arguably qualify. Decarabia and Yatsufusa are some examples.
* ValuesDissonance: The ratings for each game vary greatly by the region. ''Nocturne'' (''[[MarketBasedTitle Lucifers Call]]'') and vanilla ''Persona 3'' have significant gaps between the PEGI (12+ ) and ESRB (17+ ) rating alone.
** ''Nocturne'' even got an A in Japan, which basically means suitable for everyone. Note that this game is considerably more difficult than the already difficult ''VideoGame/DigitalDevilSaga'' and ''Persona'' sub-series, you get turned into a demon by having a snake-like parasite get ''dropped into your eye'' '''in first-person perspective''' and [[spoiler: you can become the literal [[TheAntiChrist anti-Christ]] as you ''become the new General for the legions of Hell/Darkness to wage war against {{God}}'']].
** Many speculate that the only reason many of the games--even the less violent ones such as ''VideoGame/{{Persona 3}}'' and ''[[VideoGame/{{Persona 4}} 4]]''--have M-ratings in the United States is because of [[GagPenis Mara]], who is absent in ''VideoGame/DevilSurvivor'' games, one of the few series in the franchise to carry a T-rating.
* VisualEffectsOfAwesome: Some of the designs for demons are truly awesome (which is why they can be downright [[NightmareFuel terrifying]]). For example, [[http://megamitensei.wikia.com/wiki/Beelzebub Beelzebub]].

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