Persona 5 is an excellent game. I know, understatement of the year isn’t it. Still, the statement stands true, it is a very good game. It manages to perfectly mix storytelling, deep RPG elements and a turn-based battle system that rewards your actions away from the actual battle screen. Oh, and it is effortlessly cool.
Apart from all that, Persona 5 is equally interesting because it works on a day-by-day calendar system. You structure your day partly how the game wants you to and partly how you want to. Freedom is gained but interspersed with important story details. Yet, you get enough free time to have control over how you want to progress relationships with your confidants and increase your abilities. It’s a mix that works in the context of the game Atlus has built. The calendar system also allowed a unique experience to happen.
While playing the game, it soon became apparent that I was going to, as many other people will, spend my digital birthday with these characters. My birthday is 11th July (please send me presents) and while that date has passed in the real world (there is always next year) it was approaching in Persona 5. With that in mind, I decided to see what my digital buddies, and by extension, myself, got up to on the 11th July in Tokyo.
I will now transfer you to Chazzo B, sometimes known as B-kun, to narrate his day.
The night of my birthday was a calm one. Having gotten all that business with the evil Kaneshiro out of the way, I felt I could have a more relaxed sleep.
Waking up on my birthday, away from family, and suddenly realising that it was only a couple of days before final exams, is joyous, sad and stressful all at the same time!
Met Akechi while waiting for the train. He talked about Kaneshiro’s change of heart and continues to muse over the perception of justice and the Phantom Thieves. He is always asking for my opinion. I have to be very careful around him, he is an intelligent dude who has the ability to figure out the truth. We eventually went our separate ways.
The train was packed and hot, even Morgana, popping his head out of the bag at the most inopportune moments, mentioned how the train was more packed than usual. Well, at least he is perceptive, doesn’t help the fact I am sweating and extremely uncomfortable.
Stuck in a stuffy classroom next to the window with the sun beating down, Mr Hiruta started asking me about fireflies, specifically, what made them glow. *At this point I went to the network to discover the right answer* The answer I gave was luciferin and to my astonishment it was correct. All the students were jealous but at the same time thought I was clever. It was a good feeling. I was starting to be more than the dangerous transfer student to them.
Still in class, my phone started to vibrate. It was the group chat, Ryuji specifically, talking about the fireworks evening we are preparing to go to. Everyone seemed excited, except Makoto, who reminded us that we are on our phones in class. She is the student council president after all.
With school finally over I decided to go and see Makoto outside the student council room. We hadn’t really talked before all this, and I think she is an interesting person; a bit like the rest of us, she is more than meets the eye. Surprisingly, she announces she wishes to broaden her horizons away from academia, and after some deliberation, we decide to go to the arcade, to see where all the normal kids hang out.
Makoto seems genuinely surprised that this is where the normal kids hang out. It’s like she has never contemplated this place as a possible social gathering place. While at the arcade, Makoto plays a light shooter *I’d like to say it was Time Crisis* and she becomes engrossed in it. So much so that she starts making bizarre noises and attracting quite a bit of attention. Eventually, we leave, but I got the distinct impression she enjoyed the entire experience. More than meets the eye indeed.
So far my birthday has been fairly uneventful, nobody really wants to go to mementos even though we have a target or two and we don’t have a major target, having just dispatched of Kaneshiro.
As I arrive home, I get a text from Ann saying she wants to meet and study. I don’t have much else to do, and I like spending time with Ann, so I agree, and we head to the diner. We study for a while, and I actually feel it’s helpful, though I would much rather do something different, maybe go to the park? It’s a struggle to ignore the outdoors on a day like this, but the finals are super important and I need to maintain the status quo so I don’t attract unwanted attention.
After a long day, it feels great to be home. I grab a quick snack, lock up and head to bed. All in all, not a bad birthday. It started slow to say the least but picked up later as I got to spend time with friends and I got some studying done. To say it felt like a birthday would be a lie though.