Follow TV Tropes

Following

Headscratchers / Persona 5

Go To

  • Regarding the second hang-out spot, when the school roof was chosen it wasn't such a bad idea since there was a fair amount of privacy for planning and executing their mission, but the second spot was the subway access way. A very public spot with people passing by that can hear and the game in fact makes a point of people spying on them. This is in addition to going to the metaverse which I don't believe is explain just how they do so.(Vanishing? Zoning out?)Why not find someplace a bit more quiet/out of the way?
    • First, the school roof had already been considered a hot-spot due to the previous incident(not to mention Makoto already becomes suspicious of the trio after Kamoshida's incident).Second, Yusuke is NOT from Shujin Academy, holding meeting up there will only makes it even more suspicious. Third, subway may be a better place due to the fact that majority of the public disregards the notion of Phantom Thieves. Talking about it in public is no more than jibberish to adults. Therefore, the meeting spot is not only sensible and convinent, but also effective at proventing eavesdropping due to the noise.
    • Advertisement:
    • As for getting into Metaverse, people can only arrive at Metaverse if they paid attention to the users and within close distance. In other words, if they are not aware that metaverse exists, then they won't bring random bystanders by accidents. Furthermore, why do you think they have to enter the place right away? They can move to the real-life location that is close to the palace, and activating their apps.
    • There is also the phenomenon of "You can't see what you're not looking for". Most people aren't actively looking for the Phantom Thieves, much less know what they look like. Not every cop can go around hassling teenagers for...meeting at a popular meeting spot and talking about pop culture news. The subway gets so busy and crowded, most people aren't going to care about the few that are standing still and out of the way.
  • In the beginning of the game, why hasn't the whole volleyball team quit almost simultaneously?! Even if they have gotten far in tournaments, success should never come at the cost of one's own well-being and will to live! Why do these people put so much importance on what's supposed to be just for fun to the point that teachers and parents are okay with letting the coach beat up their kids and even try to get in bed with a few of them? I realize honor and duty is important in Japan but there comes a point where enough is enough and this is absolutely ridiculous!
      Advertisement:
    • The incident with Ryuji and the track team is likely used by Kamoshida and the rest of the school to set up a precedence for what happens to those that defy him. Kamoshida was able to get away with disbanding the entire track team because he pushed Ryuji's buttons. Even worse with Ryuji, he was also able to get away with beating up a student and injuring his leg by claiming it was self-defense, and Ryuji's Confidant shows his old teammates are mad at him for snapping, since they all tolerated the same abuse. If anyone from the volleyball team tried to quit, Kamoshida could threaten them with expulsion like he did with Ryuji and the protagonist. Kamoshida also probably gave expulsion threats to make sure none of the girls he harassed ratted him out. The threat of expulsion and the precedence set by Ryuji probably made the team realize how futile it is to try and go up against Kamoshida.
    • Advertisement:
    • Also they endured it for the prestige of being on Kamoshida's volleyball team. Either because they or their parents wanted to use it to get ahead in life. For Japan it's not that unusual to think getting abused is worth it if it pays off years later.
    • I forget the specific word for it, but it is/was a problem that many Japanese employees were literally dying on the job. They were overworked, overstressed, and overtaxed. Why wouldn't they just quit? Loyalty to one's supervisor and team is very important. You are ranked more by your seniority to a company rather than your experience in many areas. This means that if you quit, you may have to start from square one somewhere else. So it is entrenched that once you establish a bond of responsibility, you fulfill it under the impression that you will (eventually) be rewarded. In this case, the volleyball players were/will be "rewarded" with scholarships and academic prestige, things that their parents especially value. The sunk-cost fallacy kicks in, and every day the volleyball players suffer just means they are one day closer to being free. It's crazy to think that this is by any means a fair transaction, but that was the level of Kamoshida's intimidating influence.
      • The word you're looking for is "karoshi", or death by overwork.
    • There is also the fact that students in Japan have to earn their way into high school to begin with. Considering that Shujin is a highly prestigious school, most of the students likely had to really focus to get into the school, and thanks to the sunk-cost fallacy they are likely not motivated to drop out or transfer to a lower-ranking school after all that work. Plus, if the outcome is "College of Your Choice", which is seen as a golden ticket to a successful life to high schoolers and their parents, why wouldn't you suck it up? As terrible as Kamoshida is treating them, the idea of earning an amazing reward "justifies" the treatment in at least their parents' minds.
    • It can be also interpretated that people are dumb. The regular masses simply live their own lives and are actually scared about authorities stomping all over them if they gather up. This is why corrupt governments are not overthrown easily; The people are actually scared about mass suppression by the government. It simply makes them easier to control, even though the government barely has any substance going over it.
  • Is there a reason Igor's voice is deeper than his previous appearances? I know his actor died but that doesn't seem to explain why they need to modify his voice. (If it's a spoiler reason, please say so.)
    • It's a spoiler reason.
    • More specifically, the Igor you meet in the beginning of the game is in fact an impostor. The real Igor shows back up near the end of the game with a voice similar to his voice in previous games.
  • Why does Futaba call her father by his first name? Granted, he's only her adoptive father, but that shouldn't make a difference (unless, perhaps, either or both of them thinks otherwise).
    • She has No Social Skills. Sojiro doesn't seem to mind, and accepts that part of Futaba. There's also the fact that there had been a wall between them for a while due to Futaba's severe social anxiety; he tried his damndest to get her help when he first adopted her, but all of his attempts fell flat. Perhaps that might be another reason why she's so informal with him.
    • Also, it seems that it was only a couple years before the start of the game that she was adopted, and she knew Sojiro long before then. It isn't terribly surprising that she wouldn't call him "dad" or something similar given this.
    • This, of course, is also all the point: when you get to Rank 9 for Sojiro, she calls him "Dad" for the first time ever, when she's telling social services agents she's happy where she is.
  • Considering the events of the game become an international phenomenon, why is it that characters from Persona 3 and 4 (or, hell, even 1, 2, or Tamaki from SMT if...) remain uninvolved? Naoto especially would be in a perfect position to deal with such a mysterious case.
    • It seems that Shido's group was manipulating the situation from the start, so they wouldn't have contacted someone who stood an actual chance of interfering with their plans. Naoto wouldn't have been contacted when there's already a wunderkind Kid Detective Goro Akechi on the case. The time after the Phantom Thieves graduate from curiosity to dangerous criminals, with Okumura's death, it was only a few months from there to Shido's downfall. As to why the existing groups of Persona users didn't step in to do something, perhaps "Igor" showed up told them that he had things under control with a new batch of Teenagers With Attitude. And by the time it becomes crystal clear that everything is going up in flames, it'd be too late to get everyone together to act.
    • If one also takes Ultimax into consideration, there's the major fact that the Shadow Operatives are constantly mired with red tape on the government's part. Partaking in any kind of mission is a headache and a half for Mitsuru and company, as shown both during the story and during the final part of the P3 ending. Due to the corruption of the Diet and Shido's growing influence with his new political party, combined with the fact that, while they are government agents, the Shadow Ops also have their own lives to live, it's little wonder why they aren't involved - they likely can't. The "lives to live" aspect can apply to any of the other teams of Persona users, both past and present.
      • In addition, considering Naoto still clashes with the police in approaching the Kirijo Group case at the end of Ultimax, how she naturally has more contacts with the police, it may also have been possible that she may have been secretly considered as a threat by Shido and whoever dirty officials in the police/prosecution agencies he had connections to. It may not be a stretch to think that Akechi, the prosecution attorneys, the various police agencies, and the media they're connected to may have all conspired to smear Naoto's name (or even legally frame and incarcerate her) - with Naoto losing influence in the police forces. Being a genius of whatever king does not help when you don't have the political/diplomatic skill to influence people in your favor, after all.
    • Given how the very first action the villain took was incarcerate Igor and take control of his most recent Resident, it's entirely possible Yaldabaoth also captured any Persona user or previous Resident that could interfere with the game.
    • Furthermore, give the aforementioned first action, any other Persona-user is going to be missing something important for dealing with the problem: their greatest allies. Given that access to the VR really only appears when it's needed, it's likely that Igor can decide to rescind access at any point. Yaldabaoth would almost certainly be able to do the same thing. Furthermore, if Yaldabaoth could overpower Igor and Lavenza, it's likely he could do the same to Theodore, Elizabeth and Margaret (while Marie appears to have left the Room for good). If the casts of the other games can't get to the Velvet Room, that means that the Wild Cards and P1/P2 casts are stuck with only one Persona each, and a big source of information and guidance is simply out of commission. This doesn't apply to Tamaki, who is a Devil Summoner, but given that she's over 30, it might be a bit hard for her to drop her life and investigate.
    • It is also possible that since most of the old Persona users do not have the "rebellious spirit" nor are involved in "Igor's" experiment (He's trying to prove that people want him to control them after all), They might still be affected by Mementos or lost their abilities to summon Personas over time, and/or they are not given the Metaverse Navigator.
  • Is there any good reason why Philemon doesn't seem to particularly care that his loyal servant Igor and his room have been taken over by Yaldabaoth? We know he's still around as he appears in P3 and P4 as butterflies. If so, why doesn't he do anything about the intruder?
    • Helping Would Be Kill Stealing.
    • Also, it's freaking Yaldabaoth. You know, the entity known elsewhere in MegaTen as YHVH. Philemon might be worried he can't throw down with Yaldabaoth and win with certainty, or might be worried that their battle, which would rage across the collective unconscious, would do serious damage to humanity's psyche.
      • It's worth noting this incarnation of Yaldabaoth is likely unrelated to the mainline MegaTen Yaldabaoth, he is simply a Treasure that gained consciousness due to humans valuing their social order far too much, and is powerful simply because he works under the rules of Gods Need Prayer Badly, as soon as Tokyo, which while densely populated, is a tiny fraction of the world's population(so, rather few people when you consider the entire world population, but still enough to give him godlike powers), started valuing the Phantom Thieves more than him(the pool meter only got up to 65% to allow Joker to summon Satanael, a notable majority, but not an overwhelming one), he was quickly dispatched, so he was powerful, he still had to put out his full power just to cause as much trouble as Nyarlathotep did while holding back, and even then it wasn't enough since he openly threatened the source of his powers enough to make them turn against him.
      • Indeed, the villainous Yaldabaoth is neither YHVH nor the Demiurge of mainline Megaten. As stated above, it's just a Treasure that sits firmly within the psychology and mythology of Persona 5 —he's not even an external entity like Nyx or Izanami. His name is likely a reference to how the Gnostic deity believes itself the sole god, controller, and object of worship of all creation, but he himself states that he was created by humanity, which is something the Demiurge would be loath to admit.
    • It's possible Philemon was playing the long game, he knew, or at least believed, that Yaldabaoth couldn't possibly have an ultimate victory since even if the Phantom Thieves failed, he could gather up the protagonists from Persona 3 and 4 to handle the situation, after all, it is arguable that Satanael should be around the same power level as Messiah and Izanagi-no-Okami, and they would just demolish the oversized gold pendant if they teamed up, plus, there is also a matter of principle: Philemon is a literal personification of the good in humanity, and him letting Joker handle things sends a message to Yaldabaoth,and any other evil gods or godlike beings up to even Nyarlathotep, that Humans Are Special, and they are not going down easily.
    • Also, it might be against the rules. He doesn't do any direct moves, and Nyarlathotep holds back as well. The fact that this game started with a well-executed sucker punch, doesn't change anything. Yaldabaoth pulled off the move, so Philemon needs to deal with it, and hope his proxies can rise above it.
      • He also likely needed to keep any movement by Nyarlathotep in check given how Yaldabaoth very existence came from a darker side of humanity and thus Philemon couldn't afford to take any great effort encase Nyarlathotep decided to make any moves which could cause another persona 2.
  • During the scene after the cruise liner when it was going up in flames, did no one consider that their Personas could have helped them escape? Futaba has a UFO or giant floating sphere, Ryuji's Captain Kidd has a boat, and the protagonist could potentially have Personas that also fly or float.
    • Perhaps only Futaba can enter Necronomicon, and Captain Kidd's boat doesn't work as an actual boat? As for Joker, that's solely due to the fact that the game has no way of forcing a certain Persona on you outside of Arsène, who probably can't fly and, if he can, not with that many people.
    • It's a general issue with cutscenes: They never use their Personas unless it is for direct battle, I mean, why would Joker let himself be captured when he could have just busted out Arsène, who should be able to melt normal people without any effort, and just as easily knock them out if he pulls his punches a little? Joker had a reason not to, but Akechi didn't know that, and he never finds it suspicious that he was captured easily while still in the Metaverse, it seem like a solid, consistent case of Forgot About His Powers.
      • Except the Phantom Thieves expressly do not kill, which Akechi most definitely knows, and it seems similarly unlikely that the protagonist would risk using his persona's power on ordinary people.
      • The mere summoning of a Persona would likely throw all the guards off him, which is why I said "pull his punches", then there is the massive intimidation effect of the sight of the huge winged demon man would cause, Joker could easily have got away by just using his Persona defensively without ever even throwing a single attack, instead using it for defense and mobility, plus, that was only one example, there are multiple others, like Futaba never bringing up that she could user her Persona for easier mobility in Okumura's palace(Necronomicon is an UFO, no less, it would fit perfectly with the Palace, even Prometheus wouldn't look out of place in there), or Makoto never using her Persona for mobility despite it being a literal motorcycle, or trying to dodge the rubble from Futaba's Palace instead of trying to destroy most of it with their Personas, or literally any point in the game that using their Personas would be useful, like maybe using their Personas to bypass a few Palace puzzles, the only instance I remember of the main characters using their Personas outside of direct combat or the awakening of their Personas was Ann using Carmen to intimidate Shadow Kamoshida.
      • It's mechanic issue. Party members don't use their Persona's outside cutscenes because they could be one of two Persona's depending on if you maxed their Confidant or not. Since that would require two variations of the cutscene that's too much work. Ann and Makoto use their Persona's in cutscenes in their first dungeon's because it would be impossible to max their confidants by then, but otherwise it's battle only.
    • It's also never established whether Personas can actually serve as means of transportation (except for Necronomicon, which, as stated above, only sees to be able to transport Futaba). Given that most Personas are only summoned for a few seconds at most while preparing an attack, it's unlikely that they could be maintained long enough to transport the protagonists across the water to safety.
      • Makoto DOES use hers as transportation in the first cutscene, though.
    • The power source of summoning persona power is hatred and animosity. In the cutscene mentioned above, Makoto was facing armies of guards and attempting to fight a way out. Also, the curise ship sinking had already caught them off-guard. With all the distractions and lack of will to fight, it would be impossible to summon persona as they ran out of "mana" to do so.
    • I think it's a lot simpler than any of the above: Once a Palace starts collapsing, Persona powers effectively stop working for anything except their Thief Suits. That's why the Phantom Thieves have to GTFO on their own two legs after stealing the Treasure every single time (except the Museum because Madarame's Boss Battle took place close to the exit). The fact this didn't happen in Sae's Casino is a big clue that the party didn't actually stole her Treasure. Morgana can resist this the most, but even he returned to his normal cat form in Kamoshida's Castle, possibly because he wasn't expecting it.
  • If the police wanted to find the Phantom Thieves, wouldn't the calling cards be perfect evidence? Wouldn't their fingerprints be on them?
    • They presumably put on gloves, because that's what an intelligent criminal would do. Then again, Ryuji made the first one.......
    • A fingerprint wouldn't be very helpful as evidence in this case. Even if Ryuji left fingerprints on all of the cards, they can't be traced back to him if they don't have his prints on file. All it would prove is that the cards were made by the same person, which everyone takes as a given anyway.
      • However, given the "self-defense" incident, he likely does have his fingerprints on file.
      • His first batch of cards were posted all over the school's bulletin boards, he could easily say he simply touched the cards when they were posted up by the phantom thieves, like several students undoubtedly did. Yusuke was likely clever enough to avoid leaving prints and the cops wouldn't check for any possible paw prints from Morgana.
      • It's also entirely possible that prior to Kamoshida's change of heart, the school simply thought of the Phantom Thieves as a prank and disposed of the cards, unintentionally destroying the evidence, so the police wouldn't have the first set of cards to analyze, and after that, Yusuke was in charge of producing the cards, so he just knew better.
      • In Kunikazu and Sae's cases, Haru and Makoto are the ones who report finding the cards as well as the delivery girls, so they'd have an excuse for their fingerprints being on them. It's possible that unrelated people handling them tainted the evidence and caused any fingerprints to be useless.
  • What did "True Justice", the skill you get from Sae, even do?
    • It is basically an indicator that you're on the right track to the true ending.
  • How can you get Arcana Burst from Judgement Personas before reaching the present? How does that work story wise, since you're in the past, relaying a story, for most of the game?
    • You don't get the Arcana Burst EXP until Judgement is maxed.
      • No, you do.
      • It is apparently buggy or different between regional versions: I did not get fusion bonuses for Judgment until after 11/20, but have heard reports that others did.
      • After having fused Satan with only a Rank 3 Judgement (this is in NG+ and maxed Strength), there was no Arcana Burst EXP at all, so Satan did not gain any experience, levels, or new skills upon fusion. It is unknown if this is indeed a bug or regional differences. Since there does not seem to be any bonuses, perhaps it actually could be a case of Gameplay and Story Integration. That is to say, since most of the game is technically a recounting of the events that lead up to the heist of the prologue and the Judgement Confidant is only established during the present day, then it is effectively non functioning up until the game catches up to the prologue because it was not technically established yet. So while the player may see the Judgement Confidant during the actual gameplay, it has no mechanical function until the game caches up to the present.
    • Since the protagonist is relaying his story to Sae, it's possible his current bond with her as he's relaying it would stick with him while he 'remembers' fusing a Judgement persona. Given the Clap Your Hands If You Believe rules of the collective unconscious, this could be really stealthily retconning all his personas (and by extension those he fused) to act as if he'd gotten that benefit from the bond when he fused them to begin with. Or, the most likely actual solution; a combination of Gameplay and Story Segregation and Unreliable Narrator.
    • The Velvet Room in this game may not have a linear timeline. P3 and P4 heroes need to enter into a contract to visit the Velvet Room and it's implied that the signed confession is P5 hero's contract, even though he signed it well into his partnership with the Velvet Room.
  • Why the hell is the Principal in on the big conspiracy? Sure, we know the Black Mask visited the other palaces, but if Kamoshida was ever a person of interest to the higher-ups in the conspiracy it's never mentioned, so it can't be because of that. Just why the hell are these super powerful men with tons of resources at their disposal hounding a principal who's so useless he has to make the student council president do his dirtywork?
    • I don't think the Principal's involvement was that major. IIRC, he only started receiving calls from the conspiracy after the Kamoshida incident. They probably realized what happened to Kamoshida and wanted to monitor the Phantom Thieves at Shujin Academy. I'm not exactly sure what the Principal would have told the police had he actually made it to the station but whatever it was, it could just be "I was contacted by so and so to spy on my students"
    • It's also shown in the Story Synopsis that the Principal was a 'minor' client of the Conspiracy. As in he possibly paid Shido in money/favors/information so that he could get Akechi to cause a mental shutdown in whomever the principal wanted. Once he was in, even as a member of the outmost circle, he pretty much had to obey any orders he received. Also, since the Conspiracy already knew about the Metaverse, any sign that there were others was a giant red flag that they needed to deal with.
    • In addition to buying off the woman Shido harassed, and having the police sweep the whole under the rug, the Conspiracy would also need to keep an eye on the other witness to make sure he didn't go around trying to give his account. Possibly paying the principle to let Joker be transferred and keep an eye on him for them. Its never explained just why the principle went out of his way to allow someone with a criminal record into his school when nowhere else would take him after all.
  • Why did the government decide they needed to get involved in Wakaba's research that, going from Futuba's understanding of the Metaverse and idea for how to use her own Palace, was likely based heavily in psychology and Jungian theory and more than likely had to look, even below the surface, like nothing more than a major revolution in psychology and mental health treatment? Certainly proof of the existence of the Collective Unconscious would change that entire field but why would the government feel the need to get involved at the scale they did and what kind of logical leaps did Shido have to make to realize he could use it to control the country?
    • Maybe Wakaba was working on a study of group psychology, or sociology. They're not uncommon, every so often organizations and governments try to better figure out how people think as individuals or groups. I think the timeline worked a little like this: 1) Wakaba makes a breakthrough about the Metaverse for her government think tank, maybe it was intentional, maybe it was coincidental, maybe Philemon, Nyarlathotep, or Yaldabaoth had a hand in it. 2) Akechi approaches Shido, and proves to him what he can do. 3) Shido realizes the utility, and since he's part of Wakaba's study, makes the connection. 4) Shido has Akechi kill Wakaba, and he makes the fake suicide note so that people think that Wakaba died because of Futaba, and not anything related to her research. 5) Shido starts up his conspiracy, using Akechi as his intel-gatherer, and assassin for hire.
    • Also, P2 and the Arena games make it clear that Shido's cronies are nowhere near the first government officials to be aware of Personas, Shadows, etc., and the power they hold. Wakaba's research probably wasn't the only Collective Unconscious-related project the Japanese government was pursing.
    • Can you imagine what the government could do if they know how control cognitions? They might use it on other national leaders or important figureheads and turn any negotitaions to their favor. If anyone what to interfere other countries's politics, this is the safest, and the most effective way.
  • So if I understand this right, Yaldabaoth was born in the Metaverse from humanity's collective desire for social order. But that would indicate that the Metaverse created Yaldabaoth, not the other way around. If that's the case, then a major question remains: what in Philemon's name created the Metaverse?
    • The game seems to say that Yaldabaoth was born from humanity's desires and he subsquently created the Metaverse around him. The other final bosses in the previous Persona games were created the same way, through humanity's unconscious desires.
    • The Metaverse is another manifestation of the liminal realm between reality and the Collective Unconscious, same way the Midnight Channel was. Humanity itself created it and everything in it.
  • When Akechi was speaking at a panel at Shujin Academy, he was about to reveal the identities of the Phantom Thieves but his phone goes off just before he says it. How did he time this perfectly?
    • It's not that difficult to time answers to a preset timer. There are magicians who literally make a career out of it, in fact.
  • Assuming Cafe Leblanc only has a minimal bathroom, since it's a restaurant, how often does the Protagonist bathe or shower?
    • There's a bathhouse right across from Leblanc.
      • Using that bath consumes time each day. How does he stay so clean otherwise?
      • That's in gameplay. In real life, your average bath takes nowhere near as long, unless you fell asleep (which isn't something you should be doing in such a situation). So presumably he stays clean the same overall way the rest of us do.
    • Moreover, washing the dirty clothes at the laundromat consumes time or requires paying/asking Kawakami. You can go months without using this function. How does the protagonist keep his clothes clean? It's not like the third game, where you can assume all the kids' clothes are cleaned as part of a dorm service, or the fourth game where you can assume Nanako or Dojima does it.
    • Another possibility is that, as the game skips most mornings, he does laundry then with money set aside for it.
    • This actually explains a lot. It's not that he's not doing laundry/taking a bath...it's that he's taking a LONG bath, or thrwoing in ADDITIONAL laundry that he couldn't clean otherwise. The bathhouse gives you a bonus because you spend HOURS soaking. The laundromat takes time because you're throwing in additional clothes you didn't have room for, that are COVERED in mud, to the point you can't tell what they were!
  • How exactly do mental shutdowns work? They are incredibly inconsistent. In the case of Ohya's partner Kayo, it is clear that mental shutdowns don't always kill the person. Also, in the case of Kunikazu Okumura, it is also clear that the process of killing someone's shadow doesn't immediately kill the person. Lastly, how are all the mental shutdowns timed perfectly?
    • This is an All There in the Manual/Viewers Are Geniuses issue dragging on since way back Persona 3. Long Story Short, Persona 3 Club Book: World Guide Q&A explains that a person's Shadow is a fundamental working component of their mind, especially one as complex as that of a human being. Depending on what kind of harm befall them, you can get of several and potentially nasty side effects:
      Deprive someone's from their Shadow without destroying it, and you have a case of Apathy Syndrome, Mass Lethargy Syndrome or a "mental shutdown" as it's called in Persona 5. Corrupt them as Akechi Goro did and the victim goes into a psychotic breakdown. Kick a Shadow's ass while in its berserk form, and you will put its progenitor well in their way of a psychological breakthrough as it happened with the Investigation Team sans their leader. Similarly, take away the metaphysical manifestation of the underlying unconscious motivations fueling their narcissistic personality disorders, a.k.a. their Treasure, and they will have a "change of heart".
      Completely destroying someone's Shadow will most likely kill the progenitor or turn them into a vegetable, but I noticed that many people are confusing a person's Shadow with a Cognition of them, which aren't the same thing at all. For example, Ann kills her bikini-clad double in the first Palace and suffered no backlash because that was merely a materialization of how Kamoshida thinks of her and no more real than the furniture of his castle. The death of Haru's father is another source of confusion because that person should have died soon after the culprit offed his Shadow, but that's just Gameplay and Story Segregation because the player can finish his Palace well before the press conference on October 11th. Same thing happened with Futaba who could have easily dealt with the Medjed issue but didn't do it until the storyline-mandated date.
      • I think mental shutdowns sometimes kill people and sometimes leave them either completely incapacitated or in a vegetative state, as there are multiple different outcomes among mental shutdown victims throughout the game. To explain Kunikazu Okumura's death, it should be noted that the circumstances of his shutdown were very unusual, as he is the only person we know of who had his heart stolen prior to the death of his shadow. It is entirely possible that the act of confessing his crimes is what killed him, explaining the delay between the killing of his shadow and his mental shutdown. To explain this, it's possible that the last remaining part of Okumura's shadow was his treasure, which was only truly destroyed when he confessed his crime, causing him to die. This may also explain why Kobayakawa died when he was about to confess his crimes.
    • My impression is that killing the Shadows didn't kill their hosts at all, just caused the breakdowns (a.k.a. made them go vegetative, but still alive), and the Conspiracy was finishing the job later. They were clearly manipulating the causes of death that were announced, it's not really beyond their power to have just disposed of the victims while they were hospitalised.
    • During Akechi's boss fight, he shows the ability to make shadows go berserk. This causes the mental shutdowns. He would make the people turn violent and than solve the cases. Killing the shadows, kills the person.
      • ...No, that's not how it works. Akechi's ability to cause rampages/psychotic breakdowns and mental shutdowns are two very different things. "Psychotic breakdown" is technically an incorrect translation of what he does to them, but to get to the point: The derailment of the train in April and the runaway truck in May are examples of rampages/breakdowns, and two months later, you get a Wild Duck Burger employee who streaked and took nudes of himself, which doesn't really constitute as a "psychotic breakdown." In both instances, those three people lived without remembering what they did. Per Akechi's definition, his rampaging powers "unshackles the chains of the heart" - which is exactly what he does to the two Shadow flunkies he brings with him to his first boss fight, and then on himself for his second boss fight. The two flunkies died because the thieves killed them, and Akechi also survived. To go back to the rampages: the affected get arrested for what they did, and Akechi takes credit for solving those cases. Mental shutdowns, on the other hand, have more or less been around since Persona 2 and share some consistent traits: death of the Shadow, either directly (I.E Akechi shooting Okumura's Shadow) or indirectly (I.E Shadow Yukino committing suicide in an alternate scenario of Innocent Sin), followed up by the person entering a vegetative state. As for the rate of death, I imagine that the person's health and mental strength might influence it; remember that Haru mentions her father being in poor health well before the shutdown, whereas Wakaba wasn't completely done in until she was struck by a car. There's also a very stark difference between their personalities and mental strength.
  • Why did Morgana take the form of a cat in the real world? Sure, he is formed from the last remaining hope from humanity, but why a cat, a mascot one nonetheless? Is there some kind of deeper meaning behind this? Can we just assume that our cognition of hope is that of a mascot cat?
    • Well Morgana was created with mankind's remaining hope, but his job was to track down and aid the Trickster, aka Joker. He was most likely given a cute and appealing form so not to frighten those he was supposed to be helping, and it's possible that Igor didn't have enough time or strength to give him a human form, like his other attendants. Basically; because cats are cute and previous protagonists have always had the option to be a Kindhearted Cat Lover.
    • He's a cat burglar.
  • If Makoto was trained in Aikido (which focuses on joint locks, grapples, and throws) than how and why does her fighting style revolve around kicks and punches suited for strike based martial arts like karate?
    • I'm pretty sure Makoto is venting her repressed anger in battle, so she uses a more aggressive style.
    • Remember that Makoto got easily overpowered and restrained by Kaneshiro's men despite all her training in Aikido once they realized she was using her phone to listen in on their conversation. This probably became a very sore point for her, and given that Persona Users get a considerable Magical Enhancement to their physical abilities in the Metaverse (seriously, they put anime ninjas to shame when traversing a Palace, never mind how they can punch/kick/slash/bludgeon Shadows without even using their Personas), Makoto realized she could actually afford to fight more like a brawler even if the style didn't suit her in the real world. If so, I assume it was indeed very, very cathartic.
    • The truth is probably simpler. A sizable chunk of the shadows the Phantom Thieves fight against don't have human proporitons, which would render a lot of Makoto's Aikido training useless. Any competent self-defense course will strive for basic proficiency in all areas of combat, so Makoto is almost certain to understand the basics of striking an opponent, which would be much more reliable.
  • At the start of the game, Sae says that the "best case" scenario for the Protagonist is life in prison, possibly even the death penalty. I'm sorry, what? First of all, the Protagonist is a minor who only had one offense to his record prior to the whole Phantom Thief thing, and second of all, since when is stealing a capital offense?
    • Stealing isn't the only charge he's facing. According to the Rabid Cop from the beginning of the game, he's being charged with obstruction of justice, blackmail, defamation, possession of weapons, and manslaughter. They could easily, and are probably planning to, bump up the manslaughter charge to full-blown murder and add terrorism to that list, which would definitely add up to a life sentence. You're right about the death penalty, though — execution of minors is against international law, so it would take some serious BS to get Joker to face the noose.
    • Assuming it had gone as the villains planned he'd have been convicted of every crime the Conspiracy did themselves, which were several crimes on a national scale and multiple murders and assaults in the mental shutdowns. That would have been serious. But that's cause he was framed. In the end, when he gets convicted of the actual crimes the Thieves committed, there's a broadcast violation and trespassing, both slap on the wrist offenses.
    • Sae is probably bluffing. She's a prosecutor, after all, plus she still has the warped desire to win that gave her her Palace, so she's not on Joker's side, even if she's less brutal about interrogation than the police. She probably knows full well that there's a good chance they won't be able to get any of the charges to stick, let alone life imprisonment being a best case scenario. She's just trying to scare him into giving a detailed confession to use against him in court.
      • Sae is DEFINITELY bluffing. Japan is a signatory to the Convention on the Rights of Child, which forbids the death penalty for children. Granted, the police have violated other provisions of the convention by torturing and drugging the protagonist, and forcing him to sign a confession, but there's difference between what they can get away with in secret in a darkened room, and what they can do in a high profile trial that will have international attention.
      • To be fair though, there is a powerful political figure out to get them with connections in very dark places (Sae wouldn't know that, however, given the circumstances presented post Sae Niijima's Palace)
    • She wasn't the one who set up the charges; in fact, she's only there by convenience and sent to avoid backlash, with no power over what's happening at all, especially in practice... and it doesn't help that her own values are distorted, as evidenced by her palace, where she cares more about winning/convicting the kid than actual justice/rule-upholding. Moreover, the ones who actually gave him said charges want him dead, and have no hesitation in breaking any laws behind-the-scenes, to get their enemies out of the picture. With such corruption, why is it even a surprise?
    • They knew the charges wouldn't hold, thats why they sent Akechi to murder you and label it as suicide.
    • Additionally, the entire thing might be rigged and set up for you to win, not lose by Yaldabaoth. Remember that he has a reason to do this; That's because if you won or Akechi won, he will still take over anyway. The entire trial has no consequence to you or him, at least not what is written on paper.
  • Weapons in the Metaverse work on Clap Your Hands If You Believe—the Shadows mistake them for the real thing, so they're affected as such. So somebody explain Akechi's energy weapons to me. I suppose they could fit in well enough with the general loopiness of the Metaverse (they wouldn't be out of place in Okumura's Palace, for instance) but still...
    • You say that like Morgana wasn't called out in game by Ryuji right after the gun mechanic was introduced for using a slingshot that is on par with the fake gun he gave Joker for this exact same reason. The same conversation basically established everything Morgana said regards to "Thinking it's a real gun makes it hurt as much as a real gun" is BS; A more likely reason is the weapons work because the people using them act like these should do something to the shadows which leads shadows to think they should be hurt (except when they don't) even if the weapon used is silly out of context. I'm more confused at why Morgana using a slingshot with things that look more like rocks than bullets doesn't get the same amount as snark as Goro's toys, since if his tech was real they could do a lot of damage... Assuming they didn't cauterize every wound they made closed on impact, keeping them from causing health issues like infection or bleeding.
      • Slingshots are real and can really hurt though.
      • Slingshots are real, slingshots can cause serious damage to people, slingshots cannot cause the same harm as a pistol or a revolver, not even close, yet Morgana's gun damage is on the same ballpark as Joker's or Makoto's.
      • In the real world, certainly not, but the Metaverse doesn't work on the same principles. If Morgana's cognition is that his slingshot is pretty powerful and can hurt enemies, then so is it reflected on his weapon's part. His cocky attitude no doubt helps in that regard.
      • Except it's stated by Morgana that the ENEMY'S cognition has to see it as a threat, not their own.
    • It's about the cognition of it; it's not so much that they think Crow's weapons are real as that they perceive them as a laser sword and as a ray gun, and they know that in fiction, a laser sword to the face is going to hurt, so they get hurt as if they were being hit by a (real) laser sword, and the fact that laser swords aren't a real thing is rendered irrelevant. The same logic is used to why Morgana can turn into a car. People know cats can't turn into vehicles, but works of fiction managed to make them perceive a cat becoming a vehicle as a possiblity.
    • The above is also the reason fake Igor throws you out of the game when you refuse to accept the game as fiction. The Demiurge has no intention of allowing the player to play by their own rules, ESPECIALLY if he knows that the player is the true individual responsible for stopping Nyarlathotep, Nyx, Erebus, Izanami, and perhaps even YHVH from Shin Megami Tensei. He knows that besides Igor, the player is his biggest threat, and by forcing you to acknowledge HIS reality, he imprisons you like Joker, Igor and Lavenza.
  • Two questions regarding the final segment of the game. First, when Morgana comes back after revealing he only died in the Metaverse, how in the name of fuck did they understand him when he's supposed to just be a regular cat, while Sojiro, who IIRC was able to hear him earlier in the game, didn't? Hell, how do even the Thieves themselves understand him? Second, which is much more minor, in the final scene, where does the gang go when the Protagonist leaves and he goes inside their van?
    • First, Sojiro was never able to hear Morgana, and they can probably hear him because the were in the Metaverse, and that still applies. And in the ending, they all went to the beach
      • I could have sworn Sojiro said, "Did that cat just talk?" shortly after discovering the existence of the Phantom Thieves.
      • He did say that, but that was him asking if Morgana said words when he meowed, instead of reacting to the fact that he DID speak. The only way you can hear Morgana speak is if you enter the Metaverse, which is an important reason why the Phantom Thieves suspected Akechi of being the traitor.
      • I thought the requirement to be able to hear Morgana was to have a Persona, yes, Futaba at one point says that you have to have entered the Metaverse, but Sae entered her own Palace, very briefly but it should still count, yet at no point she ever reacts to Morgana's words, or indicate in any shape or form she can hear him, it seemed to me that Futaba was just guessing, she did sound unsure when she gave the explanation, as it is something she has no way to actually test.
      • This troper decided to look it up, and found that hearing Morgana is tied to hearing Morgana speak inside the Metaverse, which changes one's cognition to account for Morgana talking.
      • Futaba claims this, but also says it's a guess, and in the end the whole crowd, including Sae and Sojiro hear Morgana talking during the final battle, yet still it's only the Persona users that can hear him. Between that and the likely hood of other Persona game characters probably going to have to be able to understand him in spinoffs, and it's more likely a Persona thing.
      • The whole crowd hears Morgana, but do they SEE Morgana talking? Otherwise it's just another voice. Why would their cognition change if they didn't actually see the cat talk?
      • But Ryuji was able to understand Morgana since his first day in the Metaverse, when only Joker got his Persona.
      • Anybody can understand Morgana in the Metaverse. The real question is whether Persona Users who never saw him talk in the Metaverse beforehand could understand him in the real world anyways. Ryuji doesn't count as a counterexample because he got his Persona on April 12th and Morgana didn't manage to track down the guys until two days later.
      • It's definitely a Persona thing. Sae and Akechi had both been in the Metaverse; neither of them met, much less heard, Morgana speak IN the Metaverse. But Akechi could understand Morgana anyway outside of it before he joined the team. So either the explanation that "you need to see him and hear him speak in the Metaverse to change your real-world cognition of a talking cat" is bunk, and all you REALLY need to understand him in the real world is a Persona of your own, or it's the writers trying to be too clever by half and accidentally creating a plot hole.
      • Except there's no reason to believe that Akechi wasn't spying on them as they were talking to Shadow Madarame. He could have heard Morgana talk.
      • If that were the case, he would have seen the entire group, not just Morgana, and thus would have blackmailed, interfered with, or eliminated them much sooner. Considering he acts immediately upon gaining an advantage, it would have served no one, least of all him or Shido, if he had seen the P Ts during the Madarame heist and sat on that info for at least three months.
  • There's a scene where Makoto speaks to Akechi in some unknown area, pictured here. Where the hell is this? Is this Akechi's school? If so, what would Makoto be doing there instead of Shujin?
    • That's an omission by the localization team. At the beginning of that scene, there's an untranslated sign that reads "全国統括公関模試" and "試験会場". I think the former says something along the lines of "nationwide standardized mock examination" and the latter simply means "examination hall". My guess is that Makoto and Akechi took some sort of standardized test that day as part of the application process for college and ran into each other by chance.
  • Sojiro expresses concern that a cat in his cafe would get him in trouble, but Japan is famous for having cafes full of cats.
    • At the start of the game, Sojiro is actively trying to be a hardass towards Joker in an attempt of creating an image of a tough authority, and he was antagonizing every last thing Joker said and did to that end, it's also worth remember that a few minutes after saying that Morgana could be a problem, he comes back with a plate of food, so Morgana was never an issue, he was just finding an excuse to keep acting harsh towards Joker(something he seem to have trouble doing, as his true nature of being a kind and well-meaning man constantly shines through the cracks of his facade).
    • Not every cafe can be a cat cafe. I looked it up and it seems like the cats are separated from the area where people eat.
    • I don't know how it actually works, but it's not unlikely a permit of some sort that Sojiro doesn't just randomly have is required. In the States, due to the health code a cat cafe is at least two rooms—you buy the coffee "next door" and then head to where the cats are.
  • The Phantom Thieves should really be taking more care with keeping their communications secure. During the Medjed arc, Makoto suspects the reason why Alibaba knows so much about them is because their phones have been hacked and their chat logs compromised, which by the way is a very real thing that could happen. While it turns out that this wasn't the case, it's a bit concerning that none of the Phantom Thieves make any contingency plans for phone security, such as deleting their group chats about Phantom Thief activities after a short time. Especially when it dawns on them that they are going up against one of the most powerful politicians in Japan.
    • Yeeeeeaaaahhhh... the Phantom Thieves did not do a great job with operational security. Modern phones are generally hard to hack unless you can get physical access to them, but they needed to do more than just delete the logs, they needed to encrypt them with something like Signal. By far though, the biggest security threat they faced was Ryuji's big fat mouth.
    • It is possible that the Metaverse Navigator protects them from such a thing. Again the Phantom Thieves aren't actually "rebels," just cards in a solitaire game for Yaldabaoth to prove that humanity wants control, not freedom. You need to keep the livestock safe before you slaughter them.
    • Fixed in the anime where after they speculate that Alibaba may have hacked their phones, Makoto emphasizes to the team that they need to secure their online communications and rely more on face-to-face conversations for the really important information.
  • How did the police ambush at the Casino work? Once the game catches up with the recollection, Makoto theorizes that Akechi pulled all those cops (and their vehicles!) into the Metaverse, on the basis that people don't realize they're IN the Metaverse when their surroundings don't change. However, they caught Joker literally outside the Casino and they would have seen him break through a huge stained glass window. Even if they received an anonymous tip that summoned them to the courthouse, and even if actual casinos have plain, nondescript back alleys, they must have noticed that the courthouse looked nothing like that. Also, while Akechi would have easily sent the tip and timed it so the cops gathered outside just as the Shadow Sae fight was ending, wouldn't he have needed to actually exit the Casino, exit the Metaverse, find those cops, and pull them in with his own Navigator App without revealing his identity to them, none of which he could have done while he was in the party? Setting that up would've needed more time than he was afforded by Joker's diversion.
    • Is it ever stated anywhere that those cops didn't know what was going on?
      • In a Dummied Out and thus not conclusively canonical scene there are some cutscenes of cops confirming their confusion about the meta-verse. For whatever reason it was cut out.
    • You have to remember that Shido and The Conspiracy have Wakaba's research on the Metaverse, meaning that they probably know more than the PTs do. It wouldn't be too hard to imagine they know how to get more people into that world than we know.
      • Going off on a limb here but whose to say that all of those officers are even real? Akechi could've dropped a tip to Sae's cognition of the police. Everything and everyone outside of the courthouse is un-distorted, so Akechi could've dropped a tip to the Cognitive Police who responded like the real ones would. Then after they caught Joker, he had a few cronies who he actually did bring in from the real world grab him and take him back.
      • In one of the earlier interrogation segments while talking about the Metaverse Sae talks about how what Joker is saying about the Metaverse lines up with the statements of the police officers who arrested him.
      • It is also possible that the officers simply perceived the Casino differently since the world has been revealed to behave as one might expect it to and things like guns work if you think they might. This is, however, subverted by the fact that the persona users who haven't obtained their personas yet who enter the Metaverse seem to be able to perceive the Metaverse's distortions but this could easily also be subverted by suggesting that those with the potential to have personas are simply able to perceive these distortions and those without the potential cannot.
  • On the note of the Casino: as detailed on the other Fridge page and elsewhere, what really unnerves Makoto is darkness, as in "absence of illumination" darkness. So how the damn hell does she keep it together so well during the pitch-black portion of the Casino challenges? Sure, she's armed this time, fighting for her sister and Gameplay and Story Segregation probably apply to not mess with your preferred party composition, but there isn't even a reference to her previous fear of the dark.
    • Makoto's fear of the dark is something that's Played for Laughs and used to fuel the Ship Tease with her and Joker. It's also an attempt to show that Makoto isn't as mature and serious as she makes herself out to be, and that underneath her somewhat arrogant exterior, she's just like the rest of them when it comes to being scared. You could also argue that the situation in the Sakura house was something that genuinely took Makoto by surprise, while she had time to get used to the situation in the Casino.
    • Having a Persona gives someone clarity, with a better hold on their feelings and emotions. Makoto knows deep down that shes not really afraid of the dark. When shes with Johanna in the other world she realizes that.
  • Does Mishima even know the Phantom Thieves personally besides Joker? I find it odd that he doesn't attend their meetings when they would be important to him too. Especially when the PTs are being slandered.
    • He knows Joker, Ryuji, and possibly Ann, are on the team, but only Joker personally. Mishima's relationship with the PTs is closer to a band and a groupie than anything. He admires the PTs and what they do, but only knows them by their alter-egos not as people. Being a supporter, no matter how big does not entitle him to sit in on or have a say in the group's meetings either. Since he's still not a real team member.
  • What is Madarame's long-term plan? As of his treasure getting stolen, his income and reputation rely on plagarizing off his students until they can't take it anymore, at which point he uses his influence to drive them out of the art world. The thing is, his plan ensures that he can never have a successful student again: if a student puts up with the plagarism for the long term, Madarame can't allow the student to graduate and become an independant artist, since the fact that the former students' paintings are in a style that Madarame abruptly stops producing once the student leaves would make the plagarism too obvious to ignore. On the other hand, if he just drives all his students out of the art world after he's done with them, it will eventually become obvious that none of his students go on to become successful artists, and he'd stop getting new students, since he'd have a reputation of being a terrible teacher.
    • You're forgetting the fact that Madarame's not as smart as he thinks he is. He's a scam artist, sure, but he's doing something someone has already been accused of doing in 1911 (selling fakes of the Mona Lisa). More than a scammer, he's a complete hack. Remember, his Boss form is a bunch of separate, poorly drawn parts of his own face. I wouldn't be surprised if the only "art" he was TRULY capable of was "color between the lines" coloring books.
      • Wasn't it said that, at some point, Madarame did do his own art before plagiarizing his students?
    • Madarame knew what he was doing because, whether or not he was a good artist or a creative villain, he knew the art world. He knew that once he reached a certain level of fame and prestige nearly anything he did would be valuable (as art critics can find artistic merit in almost anything if someone says they should and not being known for a particular style gives him enormous leeway) and he'd still have a number of paintings he could sell for significant amounts of money in the event he needed more on top of the counterfeiting business he was already involved with. As an already-older man Madarame didn't really have to keep the plan going for too much longer to live out his life in luxury.
  • When the protagonist calls "Becky" to trigger the Rank 7 event of the Temperance Confidant, a nurse answers her cell phone on her behalf and immediately informs him that Kawakami fainted and even gives him precise instructions on how to get to her, including the hospital's address and her room number. Considering all the regulations related to medical confidentiality, why did the nurse tell the protagonist all that without him even having to come up with a story to get her to talk, such as he's a relative or something?
    • When you check into a hospital they usually ask for a family member or friend they can call in case of an emergency. By that point in the Confidant Kawakami probably had The Protagonist listed as a close friend and told the nurse it was alright. Figuring that he'd be very concerned when he found out she was in the hospital and would want to see her.
    • But it wasn't the hospital who contacted the protagonist, but instead it was him who called Kawakami's cell phone and a nurse answered it in her stead. Maybe she had his number (or rather, the number of Leblanc's yellow pay phone) saved as something like "Master♥" and the nurse just assumed he was her boyfriend.
    • Was implying that the nurse recognized The Protagonist's number as one Kamakami had given when he called. The idea of her thinking it was her boyfriend does makes sense.
  • Wakaba Isshiki had a mental shutdown, and that led to her collapse and subsequent death-by-car, right? But to have that happen in the first place, she would need to have a Shadow somewhere in the Metaverse, right? So that it could be taken/killed? Actually, wouldn't all the mentally shutdown people need one? How did Akechi find them? Were they all distorted?
    • Presumably, the Shadows of every individual of the general public is likely in Mementos, but you can't access them without a full name.
    • The exposition dump between Shido and Akechi after Joker's release from interrogation makes it clear that Shido had it in for Wakaba and her research after Akechi offers his "services" (which was restricted to the psychotic breakdowns/rampaging at that point; no assassinations yet) to him. He likely did some digging, pulled up her full name, and he sent Akechi off to take her Shadow out (the shutdown being encouraged by him, which his Shadow tells to the thieves before fighting him). Since Shido had so many enemies, he was likely able to give Akechi names, and he'd send him off to Mementos (where Wakaba's Shadow was likely located) either to make them go nutty (I.E the Wild Duck Burger chef who took nude selfies of himself mentioned early in the game; the train conductor who derails the subway in an anime cutscene) or spur a shutdown (I.E Ohya's partner, Okumura, etc.)
  • How was Shido's calling card made? Everyone's in their Phantom Thieves outfits but cameras don't work in the Metaverse - unless it's only phone cameras that don't work, but that seems a weird distinction to make.
    • They don't need to be in their actual Phantom Thieves costumes. They were shrouded in literal shadow, except for Joker, and even then, it's only of his extreme close-up. For all we know, Futaba just used some nifty photoshopping in conjunction with her eidetic memory.
    • Futaba seems to be able to use technology in the Metaverse when others can't thanks to her Persona. She probably did it.
      • Mitsuru's motorcycle in P3 has a Plume of Dusk embedded in it, allowing it to function in the Dark Hour. Not impossible that Futaba could have used similar principles to put something together, given her Persona.
  • Perhaps this is just a complaint, but isn't Sae's "you did good, kiddies, now back off and leave running the world to the "reliable" adults" lecture a bit of a headscratcher? She's talking to a group that outmaneuvered her, a murderer who'd been running loose for over a year, the entire police force and a conspiracy that's had everything their own way for at least a year. However, when she enters the story in the present day, she assumes control (albeit in a polite and reasonable way) and assures them that once they've dealt with Mementos and gotten rid of their pesky superpowers, trustworthy adults will take care of running the world. Yet presumably "trustworthy adults" have been around all along, and haven't been able to do anything to halt The Conspiracy or even the "smaller" injustices the Thieves have suffered — Sae herself had to have a change of heart before she got her head back in the game. On top of that, those trustworthy adults didn't help Joker much: he still ends up wrongfully imprisoned, and it's his friends and contacts who bail him out. I know that this is really for narrative purposes and to ensure that The Magic Goes Away, as well as addressing Sae's concern that what they were doing was dangerous and she didn't want them in harm's way, but given the nature of the story it comes across as another adult assuming a role that they aren't really entitled to. Was Sae's speech meant to come across as slightly condescending and hypocritical, or was it supposed to be purely sincere?
    • How is she not entitled to it, considering she's (in a way) taking responsibility for her previous distorted behavior, as well as the reality that at the end of the day, who else but the adults can this job be left to, now that the Metaverse is erased? Particularly since overall, those reliable adults were under the same issue: a growing distortion of the heart that was the fault of a false god's rigged game, and what they really needed to get back on the right path, was to remove it (which we did by game's end). So instead of an entire society that behaves as it did in-game - ie not getting involved, going with injustices because it's 'easier' than speaking up, etc - they now have a society that will at least try to become better, dealing with such situations in the place of the Phantom Thieves. So I'd say purely sincere, in all senses - condescending is up to opinion, but hypocritical doesn't exactly apply, since the peoples' previous behavior wasn't their fault (they weren't even aware of it, as well).
  • What was the point in making the SIU director have a mental shutdown? Was it just the Big Bad being paranoid?
  • How did the Rival Persona User obtain more than one Persona? By the endgame, we learn that: Fact: Akechi is a Wild Card. Fact: He has two Personas: the high-level Loki, and Robin Hood, which match his lowercase personas (Akechi as Black Mask, and Akechi the Detective Prince). Conjecture: Loki is either his starting or Ultimate Fool Persona, since Robin Hood is Justice (it's not unheard of for Wild Cards to start off as non-Fools, though). Conjecture: Akechi, as a Wild Card with demonstrable access to more than one Arcana, had the ability to create Social Links/Confidants, and his relationships with Shido and Joker might count as such. Conjecture: since even Wild Cards can only awaken to one natural Persona, Akechi must have had some way to create his alternate Persona (and, evidently, he didn't recruit it from a random enemy). Question is, did he also have access to the Velvet Room? If the former, did Yaldabaoth-Igor (Ygor) force the Twins to fuse Personas for him like they did for Joker?
    • Hacking the game's files reveals that Loki is also of the Justice Arcana. It's very likely that, due to Akechi's state of mind and refusal to make bonds, he's a Wild Card user with access to only Personas from a single Arcana, in this case, Justice. Why that isn't the Fool is unknown, however.
      • Fair enough, but still doesn't answer how he can have two Personas when it's extremely unlikely —if not impossible— he negotiated for the other.
      • I thought it was because he had two literal personas. On one side: the kid who wants to be loved and admired. His thief costume uses laser swords and a ray gun. Robin Hood is a classic childhood hero, one who steals from the rich to give to the poor. In other words, his actions can be seen as both a "justice" and a means to be loved (by the public, family, etc.). On the other side: the reckless and unpredictable "apathetic". Loki is seen as a trickster who cares little for others, neither praise nor fear, but merely in getting what he wants. Interestingly, his neutral—well, chaotic neutral at times—interpretation means he could be great at justice, being able to administer just desserts to those who deserve it. However, both of these personas have the same flaw—the inability to connect with people. One wants to be admired, but can't give it in return. One wants to administer whatever is seen as fitting, but can't realize the world is more complicated. In tarot, the main flaw in justice is the inability to process the deeper meanings or accept responsibility for mistakes. This flaw matches Akechi to a T—which is why he's that arcana. For having this flaw and having two ways to confront the world, so is the tarot and the number of personas.
  • If you fail to complete Shido's palace on time, Akechi comes in your room and arrests you because he found out that you faked your death. This makes sense, except....why the hell does this still happen even if you beat Akechi beforehand (as it is not only impossible, but would render his sacrifice and the positive changes to his character because of it all for naught)??? Granted, you would have to intentionally make that scenario occur since you won't have anything left to do in that palace after he's defeated (except send the calling card, obviously), but it still begs the question.
    • Probably a case of the developers not having enough time to think of an alternative bad ending for that arc. The game had a lot of things they wanted to implement but either didn't have the time to work on or would've made the story even longer, like making Hifumi a team member among other things. The game was originally intended to be released in the winter of 2014, but didn't get released in Japan until September 2016 due to Development Hell. As mentioned, after beating Akechi the calling card is all that's left to deal with for that dungeon, so the writers might've written that ending under the assumption that most players hadn't defeated Akechi yet because if they did, they would do the calling card soon after dealing with that.
  • Maybe I'm just missing something incredibly obvious, but: the grand plan to fake Joker's death hinged on getting Akechi into the Metaverse. Fair enough, makes sense. But that begs the question, how did the Phantoms get him to leave the Metaverse? Surely he would have noticed something was up if he stepped outside and saw the giant casino.
    • As seen here, the game actually goes out of its way to explain this and other apparent inconsistencies involving Joker's "death", but it's an easy-to-miss scene. In this case, it was established all the way back in early April that you can leave a Palace simply by walking back to the entry point. That's how Ryuji and the protagonist left Kamoshida's Palace the first time the moment they got back to that back alley in front of the school/castle.
  • Concerning Okumura's death, why did the Phantom Thieves have to target him for the sake of The Conspiracy's plan? As shown with Principal Kobayakawa, they sent him a fake calling card to make him think he was going to have a change of heart from the Phantom Thieves when in reality, they were in the middle of their class field trip to Hawaii. So couldn't they have done the same thing, send Okumura a fake calling card, kill him, and have the Thieves deal with the aftermath? The police already thought the Thieves were responsible for Kobayakawa's death because of a fake calling card, so couldn't they have killed Okumura off the same way. Okumura was the most requested target on their fan site, mostly because they hacked it, but that and a fake calling card could've still made the Thieves seem guilty of his death. It seems like even if the Thieves didn't go after Okumura, he could've been killed off by The Conspiracy and the protagonists still would've dealt with the same downfall.
    • One explanation: it might be that Black Mask can't easily get to his targets if they have a Palace of their own, or would incur undue risk to himself if he tried to go it alone (it's not clear how far his Shadow-controlling power goes, after all). The Principal wasn't wicked enough to have one, nor was the subway conductor, so he would've been able to get into their psyche easily and destroy their Shadow. Meanwhile, Shadow Madarame and Kaneshiro knew about Black Mask but didn't seem to be in danger. So, it's possible the Conspiracy had Akechi tail the Phantom Thieves inside the Palace, letting them clear a path for him until Shadow Okumura was both alone and vulnerable. But on the other hand...
    • Another explanation: the Principal was killed off quickly and without fanfare because he was just as a loose end. He was about to confess to the police, so he had to be dealt with right away. But for Okumura, the Conspiracy explicitly fanned the flames at the Phan-Site, then took its time grooming the Phantom Thieves so they'd send a real calling card. The target thus became so visible and so public that, when Akechi killed him, both the gang AND their fanbase were brutally demoralized, and public opinion was swayed against the Phantom Thieves.
  • If you fail to complete the fourth palace, Joker falsely remembers that he's arrested for coercion and blackmail as well as suspicion of being a Phantom Thief, while Sojiro also gets arrested for hiding a criminal. How would this tie into the purpose of going into the palace in the first place, and how would the police get this information since the later part of the games reveal Medjed is fake? Unlike the previous game overs, the police do not mention who filed the charges. (Just to note, the Japanese game over is the same as the English version's, so the whole "Futaba's relatives blame Joker for her suicide" is a bit unlikely.) Possible suspects would be Futaba herself, as she threatens the Phantom Thieves that she'd leak their information if they didn't steal her heart, but maybe Sae could be a possible suspect, since she was heavily investigating Leblanc during that time. Maybe Joker falsely remember that Medjed was the one who leaked their information, even though it wasn't exposed as a fake until after completing the Palace.
    • He's drugged almost to or beyond the point of an overdose, incredibly stressed, and in a lot of pain from the beating he suffered. You also have to take into account the fact that, for even a moment, he thought a good friend of his was dead because of his failure. It's a miracle he can stay even remotely coherent. We also later see that there are some pretty substantial gaps in his memory. In all likelihood, his false memories weren't logical and would fall apart with any real examination, but Joker doesn't have the time for such an examination.
    • The fact that the Medjed threat was staged by the conspiracy isn't revealed until Shido's palace. At that point in the story, Joker is giving his account based on what he knows, so the bad end is a sort of "what if" where he imagines what would happen if he fails to get Futaba to help with the supposed "cleanse" threat.
  • The whole idea of trying to persuade Sae to help the Phantom Thieves seems better suited for her sister Makoto rather than Joker. If the idea behind their plan was to get Sae on their side, then it would make more sense to have her sister get arrested on purpose to persuade her rather than the protagonist. Sae hardly knew him before the interrogation, but Makoto wouldn't have had that problem. Why did they decide to use Joker in this plan instead of Makoto?
    • Because that was only half the plan, the other side was faking Joker's death so the conspiracy would leave the rest of the Phantom Thieves alone. They already know Akechi's plan for killing Joker, if Makoto was arrested then Akechi would abort the plan as he has to kill the leader.
  • What happened to the people who suffered mental shutdowns but didn't die?
    • That's actually answered in one of the confidant links. In Ohya's link, her partner's death was faked but eventually turns out to be alive but confined to a mental hospital post-mental-shutdown. Not many details are given, but it's reasonable to conclude that the victims remain alive but aren't themselves anymore and are no longer functional members of society.
  • If the Phantom Thieves suspected Akechi due to him being able to hear Morgana talk, wouldn't that apply the suspicion to Haru as well? That is assuming she heard Morgana as he was walking down the street.
    • Why? When the Thieves met Haru, they had already entered the Metaverse for the first time. When Morgana met her, she thought he was just a regular cat.
    • It's specifically the contradiction that makes Akechi suspicious. When he meets with the team during October, he gives a story that he gained his persona just 2 months ago, and makes a big deal of pretending he can just now understand Morgana speaking. However, it's during the trip to the TV station in June he makes the delicious pancakes comment, accidentally revealing that he could understand Morgana long before that.
  • When Joker fakes his own death, why does it take the police so long to notice that his body is missing? Akechi should have been the only person who could see the fake body. They say that Joker's death was already written up as a suicide. That explains why there was no autopsy, but what about the people who were sent to clean the interrogation room and move the body to the morgue?.
    • It's stated that Sae Nijima was pulling strings behind the scenes to keep the deception going as long as possible.
  • Why aren't all the phantom thieves simply arrested in the real world after Akechi finds out their identities while working with them?
    • The stated explanation was not wanting to cause too much of a stir. The plan seemed to be to quickly deal with Joker in custody, hopefully breaking the Phantom Thieves momentum. Then afterwards "deal" with the remaining thieves later. Shido seemed very concerned about anything affecting his chances in the campaign.
    • Akechi is also partially sympathetic to the thieves and he still has to cut a deal with Joker and Yaldabaoth. That wouldn't be a fair bet, and Yaldabaoth doesn't want to take down Joker as fast as possible, he wants to stall things until he sees an outcome then blatantly rig it.
  • At the very beginning of Sae's palace, while deciding on Akechi's code name, Ann asks Haru what's wrong, to which she shakily replies, "Oh, it's nothing". What was the point of that exchange and what was it referring to? It just came out of nowhere and to my knowledge, is never brought up again. If this is evaluated upon later, then I'd like for someone to point it out because I've played through the game twice and never even noticed the line was said in the first place the first time.
    • I think it was most likely a case of "Blind Idiot" Translation. It's possible that this made sense in the Japanese dub, but when converted to English just didn't work. I'm not entirely sure about this, but this is my best guess.
    • Someone theorized in the Funny Moments page that it was Haru realizing she was the only one who put much thought into her code name.
  • So at the end of the story Shido has confessed to his crimes but in order to get a conviction Joker needs to turn himself in to to act as a witness. So, does this mean Shido was officially convicted for the crimes he committed in the Metaverse? What else would Joker's testimony give?
    • Yes. Sae specifically tells Joker that his testimony is needed because they have no way to prove the existence of the Metaverse otherwise, since it doesn't leave physical evidence.
    • The probably wouldn't believe Joker's story about the Metaverse. Its more likely that he corroborated Shido's confession. Using details and facts that only he as the leader of the Phantom Thieves would know.
  • For Shido's calling card, how did no one from their schools recognize any of the Phantom Thieves to be from their school? I mean, sure, they did have masks, and they were for the most part covered, but you would think Ryuji, Ann, and Akira's hair would be pretty distinctive. Also, let's not forget voices. They were altered slightly, but someone should've recognized it, as well as the way they were speaking. The whole scene should've given away their identity.
    • I doubt every kid in school would be familiar with Joker or his friends. Being outcasts not many people associate with them as it is. Ryuji had no friends before Joker, who is also seen as a delinquent whom nobody talks to. Ann has the stigma of being "Kamoshida's girl". Yusuke admits that he had few friends at his school, being the pupil of such an esteemed artist. Only Makoto and Haru were actually popular, and even then few students would be willing to believe that the student body president, and such a nice rich girl would be part of a criminal group. Lack of interest in the group aside, even if someone did make the connection its possible that they might dismiss the thought as nonsense. Being unable to believe that their boring classmates could be part of a criminal group that successfully took down a crime boss, world famous artists, a mockery of an international hacker group whose one of its members has ties with the real one, and (supposedly) murdered a CEO.
    • It can also be the same cognition manipulation done by Yaldabaoth to make sure Shido gets taken down and thrown back into the [[spoilers:Prison of Regression]].
  • How does the rattled status effect work? I thought Morgana said that the thieves' outfits were supposed to protect them from their target's cognition changing them.
    • It protects them from being 'forced' into becoming what the target thinks people are completely. It doesn't protect against merely getting damaged in battle. Alternately? The protection isn't perfect. If it weren't for the outfits and Personas, the party would be at risk of being turned into, say...AT Ms with faces.
  • When Morgana escapes into Mementos, Makoto laments that they won't be able to catch up to him since he's a car. Uh... Makoto? Your Persona is a motorcycle.
    • Well that works for her but the rest of the Thieves would still have no way to keep up. Driving through Mementos by herself would also be very dangerous since she'd be completely outnumbered in the event that she was unable to avoid the Shadows.
  • Why doesn't Ren get bullied in school given his hated status as a criminal. One would expect to be allowed to beat the living daylights out of him or prank him without any repercussion using their word against his. Bonus points if they were part of the volleyball team at the time when no one trusts him at all.
    • The most logical reason is that they're scared of him.
  • What even happens when the protag goes back to his hometown with the girl he dates? Is it assumed it's a long-distance relationship? They have group chats, texting and such I guess. There's also Truth in Television since they are teenagers and their interests and things they want to do in life could very well change from graduating high school to entering a college.
    • Several of the romance options, particularly the party member ones, mention that they will wait for the protagonist. They particularly mention the nearest goal being graduating from highschool for both of them, so they generally have only one year (Ann, Makoto, and Haru) or three years (Futaba) to deal with, before they can focus on being together forever.
  • Okay, so basically Futaba's treasure was herself. Just think for a minute about the logistics that part involves... Assuming she hadn't entered her own cognitive world and more or less taken the place of her treasure like she did in the game, and that the Phantom Thieves had managed to steal it anyways, what the hell would have happened? Would the Phantom Thieves have ended in the real world with a second Futaba in tow? That would have been really awkward... "Hello Boss, we've been going to a Mental World and have come back with a 100% identical copy of your adopted daughter, how are we supposed to handle that?" Would have they brought back to the real world the dead body of a 100% identical twin of Futaba, possibly mummified, going with the dungeon's pyramid theme? That too would have awkward too, maybe less so as they could have pretended to have discovered the body in a dumpster or something, and hope that no one runs tests and realizes the dead girl is a 100% genetic twin of a single child that is still currently alive...
    • Treasures don't always stay the same between the Metaverse and the real world; indeed, they usually turn into something else. E.g., Kamoshida's Treasure is a big-ass crown in the Metaverse but a replica Olympic medal IRL. In all likelihood, Futaba's treasure would've turned into some kind of memento from her childhood or something that, on some level, is symbolically "her".
  • Why on Earth would Sae's cognition be that the courtroom is removed and inaccessible when it is literally open to the public? If all the Phantom Thieves have to do to gain access is show up to a trial with zero shenanigans or special arrangements, shouldn't her cognition be that it's open to everyone to begin with?
    • Her cognition is probably that she's an untouchable god in the courtroom setting. Sure, in the real world anybody can walk in, but then what? What can they do against a prosecutor with a record like hers? c.f. the cheater in the Tower Confidant—he believed he was invincible in a video game, leading to invincibility in Mementos.
  • I might be overthinking an obviously rigged trial, but do people charged with crimes have the right to face their accusers in court in Japan? I know that's the way it works in America (the 6th Amendment), so if it works that way in Japan, then Joker would have had his rights violated by not being given the opportunity to cross-examine Shido and would have real grounds for an appeal.
    • I'm not a lawyer and I know even less about Japanese law, but if I'm not mistaken, the Confrontation Clause gives the defendant the right to confront the witnesses against him or her. In other words, the bald guy from the flashback only needed a witness to testify against Joker (not necessarily him, the alleged "victim") and a passive defense to secure the conviction. My guess is that the guy made the woman give false testimony and the prosecution pressured the defense and Joker's parents to make Joker plead guilty in exchange for a lesser sentence (i.e. probation) instead of summoning the "victim" for cross-examination, in which case the prosecution would have aimed for actual prison time.
    • Alas, it was just a farce made by Yaldabaoth to rig Joker put into his rigged game. He needs another contender, and already controlled the entire thing to happen so his plan would be put into place.
  • Is there a reason why Joker's mask and Shadow Sae's eyeshadow look similar? A connection, or just an interesting coincidence?
  • This is probably due to game/narrative reasons, but why doesn't Principal Kobayakawa have a Palace? And have any of the Phantoms even checked his name on the app?
    • Because they didn't know he was as corrupt as he was.
    • Just because someone is corrupt does not mean they automatically have a Palace. Morgana mentions that most people don't have one, that Palaces only occur when a single person's desire become very distorted. Majority of people with distortions end up in Mementos, as one can tell from the Mementos requests. There's also the fact that, while Kobayakawa was a jerk and a member of the Conspiracy, he was not that big of a part of the Conspiracy.
  • For every character that gains a Persona, why do they never question the voice that shows up in their heads, and seem to know what's going to happen after their... "headache freakout" before their Persona appears? Was it something they just knew subconsciously and didn't have to think about the connections themselves since they were in the Metaverse or someone's Palace at the time? I mean, Makoto Niijima especially didn't question what happened to her and just "rolled with it" so to speak.
    • Very few people in this series question the obtaining of their Personas. They just get it and move on.
    • As seen in previous games in the series, Personas aren't just the local flavor of superpowers. They're very literally inner strength turned into actual strength. That's why a Persona Awakening is almost always associated to an important personal breakthrough of some kind in the User's life. Persona Users recognize their Personas as a part, an aspect of themselves in the same way a person recognizes their own reflection on the mirror.
  • Why is it that the police decided to drug the protagonist when they were interrogating him? It ended up knocking him out for a short time, so why did they think it was a good idea?
    • From their point of view, it kinda was. To wit, those men in black were in Shido's conspiracy and didn't really need Joker to confess a thing. For them, his "suicide" was a forgone conclusion and their only concerns were to make him sign the confession to keep him locked and his unavoidable interview with Sae. Getting him as disoriented as possible could only help them by making his testimony to her look even more untrustworthy than the unrealistic truth already is.
    • Sae also specifically mentions that the effects of the "truth serum" should be wearing off shortly after Joker finishes telling his story. So the drugs the police gave him were some kinda truth serum intended to make him spill the beans on everything and reveal the identities of the other phantom thieves. Fortunately, at least in the true ending, it doesn't work. Also, real life so-called truth serums generally work by sedating the individual, making them more suggestible. Such drugs include pentothal, sodium amytal, and substances like ethanol and hyoscine. This would also explain why Joker was so out of it and maybe why he had difficulty remembering certain aspects of his story (assuming the drugs had amnesia as a side effect, similar to roofies.) It would also explain why the truth serum didn't fully work on Joker because even in real life truth serums are more or less a crapshoot. Of course, a simpler explanation could be that the drugs they used were made up ones that don't exist in real life and that have specific side effects.
  • Do the Phantom Thieves really lose their powers at the end?
    • They didn't; But they can forget how to use it over time.
  • What the hell was Shido going to do after offing Akechi? Without him, he'd have no access to the Metaverse. Even if he'd achieved his goals, maintaining power would likely take some effort, and someone who can access the Metaverse would be invaluable towards that end.
    • Shido knew that wasn't an option because he saw Akechi's betrayal coming from the very beginning. That's why he wanted the "Black Mask" to tie loose ends and get rid of everybody involved — including the other Phantom Thieves — before the election despite how suspicious it would look. Shido guessed correctly that Akechi would turn on him the moment he took office, so he planned on getting as much use out of the kid as possible before giving him the You Have Outlived Your Usefulness treatment the old fashioned way.
    • Additionally, he's just assigned by Yaldabaoth to act as his vassal ruler. He does not need to. Yaldabaoth likely can delete any Shadow he doesn't like at that point and won't need an assassin in the first place.
  • Was Sae's offer to cut a deal with Joker after the interrogation genuine or a Secret Test of Character?
    • It was defintely of the latter. She will defintely not reduce his penalty if he does so, alas remember the entire thing is rigged by none other than Yaldabaoth, who actually taught Joker to circumvent Sae. If he doesn't play in, obviously Joker will be rigged to be disposed of.
  • Aside from the obvious, why did Kaneshiro set a deadline for the Phantom Thieves instead of starting on the extortion right then and there? Makoto was the big prize because she'd let him get to Sae, after all.
    • He did. Makoto mentioned several times that Kaneshiro constantly reminded her of her "debt". For the palace deadline, he always gives his victims a month because he does want the money instead of having to go about it the hard way.

Top

Example of:

/
/

Feedback