Hey gang, Valkor here. Let me just say that in a heartbeat, I'll dive right into most rhythm games because I'm all about the music. “Bust A Groove” and anything “Dance Dance Revolution” related will always garner my attention. But I'll occasionally dip into “Hatsune Miku Project Diva X”. So, when given the chance to review “Persona: Endless Night Collection” the rhythm side series to the Persona Franchise, I prepared myself for one groovy session, which ultimately did not disappoint. Let's check it out!
The Endless Night Collection features three games -
- Persona 3: Dancing in Moonlight (Valkor Favorite)
- Persona 4: Dancing All Night
- Persona 5: Dancing in Starlight
Each title centers on a different set of members of SEES (Specialized Extracurricular Execution Squad) as well as featuring different themes. For instance, P3D is more bouncy and lighthearted, while P5D is like P3D in terms of concept, except the music has jazzier tones to it. And then there's P4D, which has a darker tone where you play along to an actual story, almost like a digital novel, with the rhythm game mixed in. Gameplay is the same for all three titles – notes fly from the center of the screen towards a circular border. Your job is to tap the button at the right time when the symbol meets its destination. You do all of this in sequence with the music, ranking up combo points, all the while, in the middle of the circle, you have your dancer tearing it up on the dance floor. If you hit all of your notes proper, another dancer will briefly join in the fun. Throughout each dance, other characters will chime in rooting you on, but you're also dancing for a shadow audience, where you'll be graded at the end by how well you do. In P3D and P5D, if you score well enough or meet a special objective, you'll unlock social interactions, so you can learn more about each of your team members. You can also unlock costumes, accessories, new music, and gameplay modes. I haven't experienced this in P4D, but I've only played with the story mode, so I'm not certain how the other modes play out.
Things may sound easy enough, but with different modes of play and so much on-screen action, there's enough in "The Endless Night Collection" to keep you on your toes... or rather your fingers tapping. It's not just about connecting the music to the beats, you also have to get in those "scratches" if you truly want to hit “Fever Mode”. And what's great is that if you miss a scratch, it won't break your combo. Lastly, in P4D, at the end of a dance, you're shadow partner will make an appearance, each one jamming with a different instrument.
I started my Persona rhythm experience with Persona 3D, switching over to P4D, which was an entirely different than the previous game. Afterward, I went with P5D, which basically took me back to a P3D experience. Now, from what I've learned through a friend, is that P4D, actually came out first, followed by P3/5D. I've also learned that each of the rhythm games connected with one of the Persona RPGs... that I've never played. So, in some instances, I'm a bit out of the loop as I try to connect with these characters. But at the same time, the game isn't really all that hard to follow, and you'll learn more about each character as the game progresses. So with zero Persona RPG experience, yet plenty in the rhythm game department, how well does The Endless Night Collection fare? Let's find out in the TOV Breakdown.
If you're up for a dancing good time, then you need to look no further than Persona: The Endless Night Collection. Fans of the Persona series will really get a kick out of these games since they're already familiar with the characters. However, newcomers will have just as much fun with this series of games as they become acquainted with each SEES member. And even if you don't connect, the game is still fun to play with a wide variety of music across three titles. The actual play mechanics will take some getting used to, for me especially since I'm used to matching floaty symbols that appear randomly around the screen in Project Diva X. But the learning curve isn't too steep. And before you know it, you'll be grooving to the beat of each song in no time. The music in each game is pretty amazing and mad catchy. And I'll admit, I enjoy the songs in P3D overall (Way of Life and When the Moon's Reaching Out Stars), as I'm more hooked on its lighthearted beats. But I wouldn't pass on the mellow sounds of P5D either as that was a bit of unexpected awesomeness. Finally, I find that I enjoyed the game way more with headphones on rather than playing through speakers; I felt in this manner I'm able to nail more of the “perfect” hits. Plus everything sounds so much better. In the end, if you like your rhythm games “groovy”, then you don't want to pass on Persona: The Endless Night Collection.
I'm not the biggest fan of the branching dialogue; I'm not quite sure how it works out in the game or how it affects the characters overall. Is this something that happens in the RPG as well? It's time I dove into this series.
You can get Persona: The Endless Night Collection as a bundle or you can purchase each game individually. The game is also available for the PlayStation Vita, so you're able to take your grooviness on the go. Either way, you're in for a real treat as you tap-tap-tap to the beat of some amazing music, balanced with sweet animation. I recommend checking it out. So, out of TOV 5 stars, I'm giving Persona: The Endless Night Collection a solid 4.