E3 2012: Persona 4 The Arena Hands-On
Usually when a game crosses genre, it’s met with quite a bit of oppsition from it’s fans. We’ve seen it with Resident Evil and many are already doing it with Metal Gear Rising, so naturally gamers are against Persona 4 becoming a fighting game too. However with Arc System Works developing it, can Persona 4 the Arena accuratly protray the game and remain a fantastic fighter?
When you start up Persona 4 the Arena, you’re greeted with the same post modern motif found in the Goldens opening. This instantly gives the game a sense a uniformatity, which helps connect the two games. Besides retaining the motif, these silly cartoonish elements also appear in attacks. For instance each character has a move that leads into a cloud of smoke with punching sound effects.
Whille it should come as no surprise, the combat is quite fluid in Persona 4 the Arena. Each character has a normal / heavy attack, in addition to a normal / heavy attack for their Persona. Based off how you time out your attacks, you can easily extend combos with proper Persona use, so these controls are quite important. You also have several special attacks, which can quickly turn the tides. These are really your standard fare, but there is a seemless transition from RPG to fighter.
Ultimately Persona 4 the Arena seems to hit both sweet spots. Currently it feels quite balanced and with it’s release a few months away, we should see further polish. Naturally things can change, but it’s current form is quite strong.