It’s only fair that Persona fans would clamor for a Nintendo Switch version of the excellent Persona 5, following this month’s reveal that Joker will be a Super Smash Bros. Ultimate fighter. Atlus has only encouraged the fervor with a recent slew of domain registrations — and now Masahiro Sakurai, Smash Bros.’ director, is adding more fuel to the fandom’s fire.
Atlus’ YouTube account uploaded a 10-minute video today of Sakurai’s recent trip to Atlus HQ, where he talked about his affection for the demon-collecting, high school-set RPGs. It’s all in untranslated Japanese, although translations from viewers on Twitter suggest the interview is all complimentary toward Persona.
A thread from MysticDistance on Twitter breaks down the highlights; those include the one social link Sakurai failed to max out, his appreciation of Persona’s menu design and his desire that the games were “half as long as they are now,” which, relatable.
The video’s best moment is when Sakurai and feline mascot Morgana meet for the first time. They share a sweet hug. It’s the best.
It’s all fluff, of course, and especially if you’re not a Japanese speaker. But the timing of this video’s release is curious with all of the other seeming hints Persona fans have spotted of late. Several domain names popped up over the weekend, including Persona5R.jp, Persona5B.jp, Persona5S.jp and Persona5M.jp. The company registered P5R.jp in 2017, two months after the release of a survey gauging player interest in further Persona projects. (Back then, we cited numerous fans speculating on whether that R stood for “racing.”) Then, earlier this week, Atlus moved the site onto a dedicated server.
On Twitter, MysticDistance explained the possible significance of all these domain names, along with similar registration patterns Atlus followed for previous Persona games before announcing them, in another thread. (Atlus followed up Persona 4 with a Golden re-release on PlayStation Vita, the fighting game Persona 4 Arena and dancing game Persona 4: Dancing All Night, leading to speculation that the company would follow suit with even more Persona 5 spin-offs.)
The domain P5R.jp is particularly noteworthy, they explain.
“On December 7, 2018, following the reveal of Joker in Smash Ultimate, I stated that I had it on ‘good authority’ that P5R is the updated release of Persona 5 and that it would come to the Switch in 2019,” they tweeted. “On December 25, 2018, Atlus moved the domain http://P5R.jp onto dedicated servers.”
The word is that the next move — a possible game reveal — will occur on Dec. 30, after a new Persona 5 anime airs.
“We know that we’ll get the first official info on [the Persona Super Live 2019 concert event] in a public commercial following the P5A ‘Dark Sun...’ OVA,” MysticDistance tweeted. “I’d also expect a teaser site for P5R during this as well, due to the recent move over to dedicated servers.”
A Switch version of Persona 5 not only sounds like a dream, but also, increasingly, a reality. Expect some kind of Persona news this weekend, whether it’s a game teaser or not.