The Let's Play Archive

Persona 4

by Feinne

Part 122: Volume 1

Composers, please.  Drama girl has way too much drama, and I know you're smart enough to friend zone music girl. 

On another note, in Schildkrote's thread I was doing some artbook showing off, but of course that came to an end really quickly. I'll be continuing that here, but I'll be rewinding to the beginning of the art for the benefit of new readers. If you saw Schildkrote's thread, you can skip over these until we get to where he stopped. Without further ado....

In the US, Persona 4 came with a 100 page artbook if you preordered it. The book is nice, but a lot of the art is crammed together to save space, and the cover is pretty horrid. In Japan, Atlus came out with a 191 page artbook from which the US one took most of its art. The layout is much nicer and there's a lot of commentary from the character designer, Shigenori Soejima. The US artbook, however, has some art not found in the Japanese one.

I'm going to be showing off images from both of them, as well as from the official art found here (warning, spoilers galore). I'll also include some of the commentary from the US version, but not the JP version since I don't know Japanese (anyone is welcome to translate what I post up, though). There will be judicious cropping to avoid spoilers, but some might still be around in Japanese, so be careful and tell me (in thread, I don't have PMs) if you spot any. I'll try to post as the story moves along.

I will NOT be uploading the full scans from either artbook, since you can still buy them from Amazon (albeit at $100+ for the JP version). If Slowbeef somehow meanders here and rules that they're not , then it'll be share time.



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Our hero. He has a strong, battle-like stance that matches the power he has as the player's avatar. His design also shows the characteristic simplicity and clear lines of Soejima's work.

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Design sketches. The US artbook notes that the protagonist's design did not change as much as his "overall tone and expression". His final design can be though of as a balance between earlier aggressive and naive-looking designs; since he is supposed to be the player within Inaba, this balance was likely thought of as desirable. He resembles Serph from Digital Devil Saga somewhat.

Dojima Family

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Ryotaro and Nanako Dojima. Ryotaro is strict and accusatory, as befits a detective. He does not face the "camera", however, which belies as certain difficulty with people. Nanako wears perhaps the simplest clothes of all characters, suggesting naiveté. Her somber face shows maturity on her part, but her hands behind her back show her shyness.

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Nanako and Dojima's facial expressions. Both are reserved. They are not as unhappy as one might think though; one can see Nanako's shocked happiness (top right corner) and Ryotaro's rare smile.

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Design sketches. Ryotaro's designs shift from older to younger, more aggressive to more somber. Nanako is more somber in preliminary design than her father, and retains much of it in her final design, which seems to be a younger composite of her long-haired and baseball-capped incarnations.

Velvet Room Denizens

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Igor, who returns from Persona 3. His design is unchanged.

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Margaret's CG, facial expressions, and design. Her design echoes Elizabeth from Persona 3's, and the concept sketches show that this was intended. I personally like her "modern secretary" (top of second page) and "aggressive banged" (bottom) designs, and wish either of them had made it into the game. Her simplistic final design, however, is probably meant to invoke Elizabeth's without actually looking like her.

Mr. Mooroka

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Expressions and design. Apparently, how his socks look is fairly important, even though you can only see them in-game on his character model. His face seems to have lengthened during the design process, though his overbite is persistent.

Illustration of the Day

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The game's cover sans text. The protagonist is front and center, looking ready for battle; he (and the thing above him) are in the game's characteristic color of yellow as a hint to their importance. Often missed details of the cover include one of Inaba's roads at the bottom corners, and the power lines at the top ones.

Sketch of the Day

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Our hero (again)! I stole the sketch for the banner from this.

Next time: The one and only prince of Junes. And maybe some lowly commoners.

One last thing, if anyone knows a way to mass upload to LPix on a mac, I would really be grateful.

Feinne didn't reply/reject my question about doing this, so I assumed it was safe. If we wants it gone, I'll edit it out.