Persona 1 will satisfy your need for a good story; if you are not bored to death with it.

User Rating: 6 | Persona PSP
This is the game that made me buy a PSP. After playing and loving Persona 3 and 4, I thought I shouldn't even think twice of buying the first game in this series. Unfortuanately, this game doesn't hold a candle to its succesors, and does not stand well on its own regardless.

This is quite the ugly looking game. Character models are small, have very few animations and are exteremely simplistic. Dungeon exploration is done in first person mode, which reveals extremely repetitive backgrounds and unispired artwork. Battles are also uninteresting since they are almost completely static, being extremely boring to watch. The only positive here are the rare CGI cutscenes, which look fantastic. 1.5/5

The music is pretty good. Not as good as other Shin Megami Tensei games, but very solid, catchy and well fitting of the areas. The only think that will get on your nerves is the battle theme, since you will be in battle for so long due to the encounter rate. Voice acting is also solid, but only used in few cutscenes, which is disapointing, since this is a text heavy game. 3.5/5

The game centers around the Protagonist and his friends trying out a game called "Persona", and the events that follow after they meet Philemon, who gives them such power. Demons start runing a muck on the city, and they find out things might just be even worse and more complicated than they thought.

The story is the game's selling point. It is original, fun, entertaining and full on interesting plot twists. Adding to the replay value is a side quest called the Snow Queen, which takes you on a completely different route on the entire game. The one disapointing thing of the story is that character developement is not that great, since few of your party members actually talk a lot (sans Nanjo and Maki), and the villains may seem not all that interesting, but the world created is something you will want to explore, definitely. 4.5/5

The game is a turn based RPG. You control a party of five characters, as they go thoughout the city to find out just what the heck is going on.

If you played Persona 3 of 4, you will not have a good base. Unlike those games, this one is more traditional on the Megami Tensei mechanics. You have to talk to your enemies to earn their cards so you can fuse them into diferent personas for you to use. Now, while that system works really well on other games like Nocture, here, it is crap. The biggest problem is that there are so many options to chose on a conversation, that you never know where to start or what the demon will like. This makes getting spell cards a game of trial and error that is extremely frustrating. Worst of all is that you have to be at a higher level than the demon to get its card, which is hard to do since the level design system is bizzare.

Unlike other RPGs, where all characters get the same experience, on this game, it is divided by who worked more will get more experience. On paper, this is not that bad, making you make a balanced team, but on execution it makes it so that you have an unbalanced team of two or three overleveled party member, and the rest underleveled. And since that underleveled character may be the only one with the specific talk option, you will have to grind in order to get better personas. Grinding should not be a problem on this game though, since the encounter rate is ridulously high, but since the battles are unbalanced and normaly a lot stronger than you, it takes a while.

But how are the battles themselves? One thing that is cool in this game is that you can equip a firearm to your characters, and use diferent types of ammo, which gives another option on the battles. So, in addition to physical and persona abilities, you have that. Which makes for a dynamic battle system... that is unfortnately too boring for its own right. The problem is that everything is so slow paced. The animations are slow, and it is all so static, with you selecting all the attacks and then watching them unfold. With the simplistic look, it just gets uninteresting after a while. Turn battle animations off if you want to get anywhere on this game. Battles also tend to drag, with overpowered skill abilities that make it a waiting game (charm status, I'm looking at you).

The game will keep you busy for a long time, more than 50 hours, and there is a lot of replay value with a whole diferent story to see and diferent characters to chose on your party. But it is all meaningless when the gameplay is uninteresting. 2/5

This game is the oposite of what Final Fantasy X is for me. That game had a lousy storyline with great gameplay. This game has an interesting storyline with boring gameplay. If you can withstand it, than go for it, but I much rather play a game that does not make me angry with its gameplay and bores me to death.

The good:
-Soundtrack is solid
-Story is quite facinating
-A lot of replay value

The bad:
-Looks terrible
-Battles are uninteresting
-Mechanics are convoluted and needlessly drag the game