2021 has been a year full of important anniversaries for the gaming industry. Nintendo celebrated both Pokemon's 25th and The Legend of Zelda's 35th anniversaries this year, while Microsoft reached the Xbox's 20th birthday, which the console shares with one of its launch titles, the FPS titan Halo: Combat Evolved. What's more, Persona finally reached its 25th birthday in September 2021. Well before September rolled around, Atlus teased some major events for Persona's birthday and indicated that it planned on celebrating Persona from September 2021 to fall 2022. It's pretty heartening to know that Atlus will give Persona so much attention in the coming year, especially since fans don't know when the next Persona game will come around.
Atlus revealed the first part of the franchise's year of events in September. At the time, lots of Persona fans were disappointed; many expected announcements of new Persona spinoffs or remakes, but Atlus had more modest celebrations in mind for the anniversary's first wave of events. Of course, it's entirely possible that Atlus is biding its time, saving the truly groundbreaking Persona announcements for later on in the anniversary year. Atlus' initial emphasis was seemingly on nostalgia for Persona's recent success, but the anniversary could still look to the future soon.
Persona's Initial Anniversary Content
In Atlus' first anniversary announcement video, Persona 5's Morgana stepped forward to represent the franchise. One of Morgana's first announcements was that each Persona game's anime adaptation, as well as the Persona 5 stage plays, would be newly available on streaming services in Japan. The anime play an important role in defining the franchise's identity, so reviving them made sense for the anniversary. In the same vein of entertainment, Morgana also announced that famed Persona 5 vocalist Lyn Inaizumi would be performing briefly at both Tokyo Opera City Hall and the Tokyo Game Show.
Aside from these sources of entertainment, Atlus' anniversary announcements also included some merchandising. A large number of Persona games went on sale in Japan for the anniversary, including Persona 5 Royal and Persona 5 Strikers. Morgana also revealed some accessories that fans could purchase for the anniversary, setting the stage for a year full of new Persona merchandise. Atlus recently ran preorders for a special Persona anniversary hoodie to promote the beta launch of Shop Atlus, a new site that'll sell merchandise for Atlus games and ship it internationally. Odds are good that Shop Atlus will play a major part in the rest of Persona's 25th anniversary year.
What Atlus Could Reveal Next
These initial reveals clearly weren't as flashy as many predicted, marking a slow start for the anniversary. Unfortunately, many of these initial reveals were exclusive to Japan as well, putting Persona's newfound international fans at a disadvantage. Ideally, whatever Atlus announces next will be something that all of Persona's fans can enjoy, whatever it may be. Although it makes sense that Atlus isn't releasing a bunch of new games all at once in retrospect, hopefully Atlus has some simpler games in mind. If a Persona 5 fighting game or a Persona 6 reveal isn't around the corner, then at the very least, a PC release for Persona 5 or a Persona 3 remaster would be a worthy compromise.
Perhaps the most important thing that Morgana told Persona fans was that Atlus' next batch of announcements will come sometime in December. Now that December has finally rolled around, fans should keep an eye on Atlus' social media platforms, since any day could be the day that Atlus releases a new video about the anniversary. Even if the beginning of the Persona anniversary wasn't what fans expected, it's exciting to see Atlus commit to an entire year of celebrations for the franchise. Boldness paid off for Atlus in making Persona 5, so seeing it press forward with such a huge event is another step in an encouraging direction.
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