Shin Megami Tensei V

Shin Megami Tensei V[a] is a post-apocalyptic role-playing video game developed by Atlus, and released in November 2021 for the Nintendo Switch. It is part of the Shin Megami Tensei series, the central series of the larger Megami Tensei franchise. It is produced by Shin Megami Tensei IV director Kazuyuki Yamai, and is designed as a hybrid between Shin Megami Tensei III: Nocturne and Shin Megami Tensei IV, featuring returning gameplay mechanics such as raising and fusing demons.

Shin Megami Tensei V
The game's box art shows the protagonist (center) surrounded by angels and demons.
Cover art depicting the Nahobino, the game's protagonist, surrounded by angels and demons
Developer(s)Atlus
Publisher(s)
Director(s)Shigeo Komori
Producer(s)Kazuyuki Yamai
Designer(s)Masaru Watanabe
Programmer(s)Yoshiki Oyamada
Artist(s)Masayuki Doi
Writer(s)
  • Yoh Haduki
  • Tatsuya Watanabe
  • Takahiro Yamamoto
Composer(s)
  • Ryota Kozuka
  • Toshiki Konishi
SeriesMegami Tensei
EngineUnreal Engine 4
Platform(s)Nintendo Switch
Release
  • JP: November 11, 2021
  • WW: November 12, 2021
Genre(s)Role-playing
Mode(s)Single-player

SettingEdit

Shin Megami Tensei V is a role-playing video game that is set in modern-day Tokyo and the Netherworld.[1] It features returning gameplay elements from previous Shin Megami Tensei games, such as the ability to fuse demons, along with new mechanics.[2]

The player assumes control of a high-school student who is unexpectedly drawn into investigating rumors about demons appearing in a tunnel with a pair of his other high-school friends. After entering said tunnel, a mysterious earthquake occurs, and the player falls unconscious. When he awakens, he finds himself alone in Da'At; an alternative apocalyptic version of Tokyo amidst an almighty battle between angels and demons. As he travels in the world, he shortly gets overrun by demons and is about to die, only to be saved by a being named Aogami. Together, they fuse into the Nahobino, a forbidden being that is neither human nor demon, but more like a deity.

After reuniting with his friends, they are found by angels, and sent to Bethel Japan, the Japanese branch of international agencies focused on keeping humanity out of the war between angels and demons. Amidst this meeting, they agree with the group that, in return of returning them to the version of Tokyo they came from, they will cooperate in protecting their version of Tokyo from the war happening in Da'At. While the protagonist gets to keep his newfound powers as the Nahobino, his pair of friends get introduced to the Demon Summoning Program, a program which allows them to summon and battle using demons.

As they return to their version of Tokyo, little time passes before the unthinkable happens: the demons from Da'At start invading their Tokyo, and the world they know is now under attack. As the Nahobino, the player will have to ascend to Godhood and claim his throne, while deciding what to save and what to sacrifice in a world without its creator.[3]

DevelopmentEdit

Shin Megami Tensei V is developed by Atlus, and is produced by Kazuyuki Yamai,[4] who previously directed Shin Megami Tensei IV.[5] One of the development team's goals with the game is to depict and sympathize with modern issues, such as unemployment, unease about retirement, terrorism and nuclear weapons, and home problems. The game is developed as a hybrid between the "profound charm" of Shin Megami Tensei III: Nocturne and the demon-raising gameplay in Shin Megami Tensei IV.[2]

 
The Nintendo Switch platform was chosen for its portability and its capability for high-definition graphics.

The game was developed using the game engine Unreal Engine 4,[6] a first for Atlus; according to Yamai, moving to Unreal Engine 4 changed the way they create games, as the ability to create something and immediately see it within the game allows them to spend more time on trial and error and coming up with ideas.[2] The decision to develop the game for the Nintendo Switch was made as Yamai liked its portability combined with its capability for high-definition graphics,[4] although there were some challenges involved since Shin Megami Tensei V was Atlus's first time developing for the platform.[7] The higher hardware capabilities of the Nintendo Switch meant that the demons in the game took approximately three times as long to develop when compared to previous Shin Megami Tensei games.[8]

The game was revealed in January 2017 as part of Nintendo's unveiling of the Nintendo Switch console, in the form of a teaser trailer featuring a destroyed office building and a number of demons.[6][9] At the time of the announcement, development had just started, and the game was presented as Shin Megami Tensei: Brand New Title;[9][10] the Shin Megami Tensei V title was announced in October of the same year, to coincide with the 25th anniversary of the original Shin Megami Tensei,[2] along with a new trailer showing a modern-day Tokyo train station and a post-apocalyptic city scene.[9] At this point, Yamai described development as not even far enough for Atlus to be able to say "coming soon".[2] By February 2018, he described the project as having entered "full-scale development", with more and more Atlus staff joining the production.[8] Although Atlus USA did not initially know whether they would get to localize the game for the Western market, they still sent out a press release about the game's announcement in January 2017;[11] an international release was announced in November 2017.[12] Responding to worries about the development's progress following a lack of status updates, Atlus reaffirmed in 2019 that the game was still in active development.[13][14]

A trailer was shown during a July 2020 Nintendo Direct presentation,[15] and another at E3 2021, announcing the game's release date of November 11, 2021 in Japan and worldwide a day later.[16] A limited edition was made available in Japan, featuring a music album, an artbook, a t-shirt, and a game case.[17]

ReceptionEdit

Shin Megami Tensei V received "generally favorable reviews" according to Metacritic,[18] and was nominated for best role-playing game at The Game Awards 2021.[27] It debuted as the highest selling physical video game of the week in Japan, with an estimated 143,000 copies sold.[28] In the UK, it debuted as the ninth highest selling,[29] and outperformed other recent Japanese role-playing game releases in the region including Bravely Default II, Monster Hunter Stories 2, and Tales of Arise.[30]

Polygon praised the scale of the game's world and writing, stating that "Despite the performance issues, the bigger areas and new engine allow for some creatures to be truly breathtaking and terrifying".[31] IGN's Leana Hafer liked the essence system, feeling that it was "possible to create some absurdly powerful and specialized teams that can take on almost any challenge".[23] GameSpot enjoyed the tension of actions in the game, "Every action in SMTV has a weight to it, and that's what makes the game so fun and engaging".[22] Game Informer said "Shin Megami Tensei V makes smart improvements to its already strong core, creating an entertaining and rewarding journey."[21]

George Yang of Bloody Disgusting gave the game a positive review, praising the modernity of the game, and the Tokyo setting, while calling it one of the best JRPGs of the year.[32] Destructoid liked the fast-travel system, liking how the feature allowed players to teleport back before a boss or move between biomes easily.[33] VG247 felt the refinements made to demon negotiation helped make the mechanic more understandable, with the reviewer stating "the tone of your answers when entering talks with a demon actually matter, and you’ll quickly build a familiarity with some of the more common personality traits of demons".[34] Andrew Stretch of TechRaptor gave the game a very positive rating, summing up their review by saying "Shin Megami Tensei V understands its roots in RPG combat, demonic friendships, and plotlines about toppling gods. This new entry takes advantage of the next generation of Nintendo console and improves vastly in look, feel, and in world exploration."[35]

NintendoWorldReport's Donald Theriault praised the move to open world environments, writing that, "every square inch of the thoroughly nuked Tokyo has spots to explore".[36]

NotesEdit

  1. ^ Japanese: 真・女神転生V, Hepburn: Shin Megami Tensei Faibu, "True Goddess Reincarnation V"

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Nintendo Switch用RPG『真・女神転生V』発表。本作のティザートレーラーが公開". Dengeki Online (in Japanese). Kadokawa Corporation. October 23, 2017. Archived from the original on November 8, 2017. Retrieved January 27, 2018.
  2. ^ a b c d e Sato (October 24, 2017). "Shin Megami Tensei V Is Being Made To Sympathize With The World's Current Troubles". Siliconera. Curse, Inc. Archived from the original on October 24, 2017. Retrieved January 27, 2018.
  3. ^ "Shin Megami Tensei V-Official Site" (in Japanese). June 15, 2021. Archived from the original on June 24, 2021. Retrieved June 19, 2021.
  4. ^ a b Ashcraft, Brian (October 26, 2017). "Atlus On Why Shin Megami Tensei V Is A Nintendo Switch Game". Kotaku. Gizmodo Media Group. Archived from the original on October 26, 2017. Retrieved January 27, 2018.
  5. ^ Sato (October 24, 2017). "Why Shin Megami Tensei V Is Being Made For Nintendo Switch". Siliconera. Curse, Inc. Archived from the original on October 24, 2017. Retrieved January 27, 2018.
  6. ^ a b Frank, Allegra (January 12, 2017). "Shin Megami Tensei is headed to Nintendo Switch". Polygon. Vox Media. Archived from the original on December 1, 2017. Retrieved January 27, 2018.
  7. ^ Romano, Sal (April 4, 2019). "Atlus brand manager discusses Joker in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, potential of Persona 3 and 4 remasters, more". Gematsu. Archived from the original on April 5, 2019. Retrieved April 5, 2019.
  8. ^ a b Junpoco (February 19, 2018). "「真・女神転生V」の成功祈願に参列。プロデューサーの山井一千氏に,通称"お払い"で知られる恒例行事とナンバリング最新作について聞いた". 4Gamer.net (in Japanese). Aetas, Inc. Archived from the original on February 19, 2018. Retrieved February 19, 2018.
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  10. ^ Osborn, Alex (October 23, 2017). "Shin Megami Tensei V Announced for Nintendo Switch". IGN. Ziff Davis. Archived from the original on January 27, 2018. Retrieved January 27, 2018.
  11. ^ Yin-Poole, Wesley (January 13, 2017). "Atlus doesn't know whether the new Shin Megami Tensei for Nintendo Switch will head west". Eurogamer. Gamer Network. Archived from the original on October 23, 2017. Retrieved January 27, 2018.
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  13. ^ Wong, Alistair (December 25, 2019). "Shin Megami Tensei V And Project Re Fantasy Are Still In Active Development, Assures Atlus". Siliconera. Curse, Inc. Archived from the original on June 7, 2020. Retrieved June 28, 2020.
  14. ^ Wong, Alistair (December 28, 2019). "Atlus' Shinjiro Takada And Katsura Hashino On SMT V And Project Re Fantasy Hopes & Aspirations For 2020". Siliconera. Curse, Inc. Archived from the original on June 6, 2020. Retrieved June 28, 2020.
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  16. ^ Peppiatt, Dom (June 15, 2021). "Shin Megami Tensei 5 coming to Nintendo Switch in November". VG247. Gamer Network. Archived from the original on June 16, 2021. Retrieved June 16, 2021.
  17. ^ "Switch『真・女神転生5』発売日が11月11日に決定。『メガテン』新作の続報がついに公開【E3 2021】". Famitsu (in Japanese). Kadokawa Game Linkage. June 16, 2021. Archived from the original on June 16, 2021. Retrieved June 16, 2021.
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  19. ^ Carter, Chris (November 4, 2021). "Review: Shin Megami Tensei V". Destructoid. Archived from the original on November 4, 2021. Retrieved November 4, 2021.
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  28. ^ Romano, Sal (November 18, 2021). "Famitsu Sales: 11/8/21 – 11/14/21". Gematsu. Archived from the original on November 18, 2021. Retrieved November 18, 2021.
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  31. ^ Arguello, Diego (November 4, 2021). "Shin Megami Tensei 5 brings familiar pain, new pleasures". Polygon. Archived from the original on November 4, 2021. Retrieved November 4, 2021.
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External linksEdit