Persona Q is a combination of the Etrian Odyssey and Persona franchises. It features the characters from Persona 3 & 4, the dungeon exploration of Etrian and a version of the press turn battle system that falls somewhere between the two. Some fans derided the lack of social links and story depth of a full Persona title, others disliked the difficulty level, but for us it’s the meeting of two brilliant gaming series’ that gives us the chance to soak up even more of their worlds. That being said, both franchises aren’t the easiest to understand, never mind a game looking to blend them together.
The main concern is party members. These are thrown at you in huge amounts – 16 active members and 2 supports to be exact – yet you only have 5 slots available in battle. Little further than this is explained, which can leave budding gamers floundering, struggling to clear the early maps with a much less than optimal team. In a previous article we detailed the absolute 5 best team members, but what if you’re looking to experiment a little further? Well today we’re going a little deeper for you and detail the 5 best choices for front line characters We’ll follow up with a rear line article too, so keep your eyes peeled on our Persona Q section for that too.
Junpei heralds from Persona 3, in which he takes on the form of a ‘comic relief’ character, at least at first. We soon learn that there is more to him than this, and without spoiling too much from previous titles there is a good deal of depth to his character, despite first impressions. In Persona Q it can be hard to discern this. He’ll often crack a joke and generally be considered quite a confident team member, pushing you forward whilst retaining a comic feel. It’s a shame that his depth doesn’t come to the fore, but he serves a purpose.
In battle he can be a very useful front line fighter. Whilst he lacks the statistical prowess of others further down this list, his skills can be immensely useful. Should you decide to put the time into levelling him up, you’ll end up with a very useful ‘Linker’, designed to follow up others attacks with his own, whilst still being capable of holding his own with some tremendous skills.
Key Row Skills
- Golden Gemini: Chance to repeat any attacking skill again.
- Death Chaser: Follows up attacks from his row with one of his own.
Chie is a character from Persona 4, in which she is a direct class mate of the player character. There we learn that she has endless energy levels, loves martial arts knows no fear when it comes to protecting people she cares about. In Persona Q, sadly this is mostly reduced to loving martial arts and eating meat. Whilst both of these facts are true, this is the limit of her character development throughout. Unfortunately we don’t get much of a glimpse into her forthright, caring side.
When it comes to battles, Chie is a powerhouse. Her character lives for critical attacks and her skills benefit this greatly. She does not often interact with others abilities, but alone she will be able to push out very high amounts of physical damage. Her stats are the only thing that keeps her behind the rest of this list: Her SP is very low and she isn’t quite as balanced as the rest.
Key Row Skills
- Furious Fist: Significantly increases critical damage.
- Power Charge: Greatly boosts physical damage of the target.
Akihiko hails from Persona 3. There he plays a more mature student within your group, more likely to voice reason and command respect. At least, until it comes to facing a challenge, at which point he’ll want to dive head first and has no problem telling you such. In Persona Q his character translates white well, though this is mostly limited to him wanting to run into danger, only to be pulled back by Mitsuru. This is certainly accurate in it’s reference, but it is slightly overplayed in the portable title. It’s expected that a handheld title cannot dive too far into character depth, but we would have enjoyed a bit more detail to Akihiko.
When battling he takes the form of a physical powerhouse. His statistics are very well balanced and he’ll be able to provide almost anything you could ask for with the right setup. He’s fast, strong and even has a respectable magic stat, so you’ll always find a use for him.
Key Row Skills
- Champions Title: Greatly increases critical rate.
- Matarunda: Lowers all enemies attack.
2. Persona 4 Main Character
Being the main character from Persona 4, in which he is a silent protagonist, the only character detail and background you’ll be able to draw upon is your experiences with him in the past. His interactions with the team in P4 will shape how you feel about him. If you’re coming to Persona Q without prior experience, you’ll find him a blank slate. In conversations you’ll be able to choose his responses, though their influence on the game itself are minimal at best. Some of his interactions with others will call back to P4 experiences, which is nice, otherwise he’s canvas on which the game is painted.
When it comes to fighting, he’s another physical powerhouse, but he’s even more well equipped to turn his hand to any requirement. His eventual Persona makes him nigh on invulnerable to spell damage and his statistics mean he can cope with almost any situation.
Key Row Skills
- Dekunda: Removes any debuffs from your party.
- Heat Riser: Increases a party members Attack, Defence and Agility for 3 turns.
In many ways, Aigis is one of the most important and prominent characters from Persona 3. Her interactions with the team and mainly the protagonist form a large part of the story there, and she’s given a great deal of depth and nuance. Her story is one of tragedy and personal growth. Sadly Persona Q reflects almost none of this. She is reduced to a machine capable of contributing logic and hard facts to every situation. Of course, it would have been very difficult to introduce a great deal of depth into a heavy dungeon crawler, but its sad to see her history entirely glossed over.
What she lacks in character depth she more than makes up for in battle performance. She is the absolute best front line fighter in the game, mainly due to her incredible defensive abilities. She will frequently completely eliminate the threat of an enemy with her passive abilities, and she’s perfectly capable of putting out big damage, especially with her alternative mode.
Key Row Skills
- Swordbreaker: Medium chance to half damage when your row is attacked.
- Aegis Shield: High chance to nullify Elec, Fire, Ice and Wind damage to your row.