Persona-3--Dancing-In-Moonlight-and-Persona-5--Dancing-In-Starlight-Review Persona 3: Dancing In Moonlight and Persona 5: Dancing In Starlight Review

   28/11/2018 at 11:48       Chris OToole       0 COMMENTS. - Score 5/5
 - PS4, Action, Rhythm, Music, Persona

Review by Ashley Fiddes.

 

After much umming and ahhhing over whether to review these two games as a collection or separately (you can buy them individually or as a pair which includes a download code for the excellent Persona 4: Dancing All Night), I eventually settled on one review to rule them all. 

You see, Persona 3: Dancing In Moonlight and Persona 5: Dancing In Starlight are practically the same game.  The user interface differs between the two to match the original Persona games the are based upon, as do the characters and the music of course, but other than favouring one cast/ soundtrack over another I could not recommend one more than the other.  Both games have roughly 25 tracks which tend to be a mix of original versions are remixes of the same songs.  The remixes do just enough to make the song sound different and new whilst retaining all of the nostalgia you will have felt from enjoying the mainline games.

The core concept sees your team pulled into the velvet room to be met by either Elizabeth (Persona 3) or Justine and Caroline (Persona 5) who inform you that you are all asleep and they wish you to dance for them.  This is done to original and remixed versions of the best tracks from the Persona game you have chosen.  As you play through the tracks you will have (at least) one member of the team dance on screen to the music.  You probably won’t realise that this is happening though as the act of playing the game takes place on the edges of your tv screen and looking away for a second will see you stumble and fail at a track.  

The gameplay is similar to Persona 4 with two semi circles on either side of your screen (left hand side for directional buttons and right-hand side for face buttons) which need to be tapped in time to the visual cues.  As well as scratch (and frenzy) circles that require a quick flick of the analogue stick when they appear.  The gameplay is quick, responsive and really feels well made.  This meant that at normal and hard I never felt truly overwhelmed (though the all night difficulty is something else) even though I found some tracks difficult to maintain the level of concentration needed for long periods of time.  Thankfully, none of the tracks are too long ranging from approximately two to five minutes each. 

Finishing a track allows you to view a replay of your attempt which allows you to firstly experience the actual dancing but more importantly, see how you did in the track and where you may have messed up a section so you can improve upon it next time.

The real gem, and I imagine the reason most people will play these games, is the music. Persona games have always had top notch soundtracks and even though Persona 5 was a more recent memory I found myself falling back in love with Persona 3 and going back to them more than I thought I would. 

No Persona game would be complete without social links and this is true of Persona 5 Dancing in Starlight and Persona 3 Dancing in Moonlight.  Each character has a social link you can unlock by reaching certain milestones – ranging from using new outfits when dancing to hitting a combined combo score. Clicking on the social links gives you a short vignette based on the team member and then you are rewarded with outfits, accessories or modifiers which can make the game easier or harder (with score adjustments based on what you have selected). 

I have truly enjoyed my time with Persona 3: Dancing in Moonlight and Persona 5: Dancing in Starlight and would happily recommend them to anyone with a fondness for the Persona games or rhythm games in general. Playing through the game and unlocking the social links takes about six to eight hours each, but the real fun is in replaying the songs and trying to beat your best scores, something I have found myself doing nightly even after 'finishing' the games.

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Better late than never, eh Ror?
 
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