The Let's Play Archive

Persona 5

by Arist

Part 63: 6/28-6/30: A Ton Of Salt

Part 62: 6/28-6/30: A Ton Of Salt

Music: Beneath the Mask

What’s Kosei like? Is it filled with guys like Yusuke?
I imagine there are a lot of “different” people there.
Now that you mention it, I have one very interesting classmate. She is a female shogi player, and seemingly quite the skilled one at that.
Are you talking about Hifumi Togo? I remember hearing she’s a student at Kosei. They say she’s the most beautiful shogi player around right now.
Dude, that sounds too good to be true! Gimme some more info!
I do not know much about her. She is not the kind of person to let others close to her.
It sounds like she only focuses on her shogi pursuits. After all, it’s said she is a lone genius...
However, I have heard she is commonly seen at the church over in Kanda.
For real!? We gotta go!
You’ll probably get struck down by a bolt of lightning if you’re going for that ulterior motive.
That ain’t it! This is for the Phantom Thieves!

Oh, this should be good.

I mean, shogi’s a kinda battle, right? She’s gotta know all sorts of insane strategies and stuff!
That is quite the stretch.
Churches are supposed to be holy. Don’t do this, Ryuji.
Urgh, you guys’re gonna pay for this one day! Maaku, you go spy on her for me! Find out if she’s really as cute as they say she is.
*sigh* Let’s ignore that idiot. Anyway, a shogi expert, huh? Striking an enemy with but a moment’s inspiration, skillfully strategizing toward victory… Those might actually be good tactics to know for our work as the Phantom Thieves. They said she’s at the church in Kanda, right? We should check it out when you have the time.

I like how we completely dismiss Ryuji there and then do exactly what he wanted for the same bullshit reason he suggested.

We can go to Kanda now.

It’s the two Uji Matcha Flans we ordered! They’re pretty worthless!

Ah, yes, I’d have to say Hifumi Togo. She does a very good job of balancing offense and defense. Not to mention, she’s very pretty.
Yes, I’ve heard she’s started doing some modeling work recently.

Well, let’s head over to Kanda and see Hifumi, then.

Music: Time to Repent

In Japanese this track is called “Penalty Time,” which always makes me think there’s like a hockey rink or some shit before I remember what track it is.

This is the church. It’s rather tiny.

Lambs who’ve strayed from their path and lost sight of their goals in this life are welcome here. Simply put, I offer solace and advice to those with worries or who wish to reflect on their past.
Hmm, this seems like a convenient place to-- Wait, did he say “reflect on their past”?

This feature returns from P4G, though now we can do it whenever we want instead of only on specific days for each party member. We still won’t be making use of it, because it’s better to get it right the first time.

That might be quite useful to you if you had something that you wanted to remember. ...Just make sure you don’t offend him or make him angry by brushing off his advice.

Maybe she’s Hifumi Togo, the one Yusuke mentioned… Why don’t you go ask her?

My overflowing Charm seems to have reached Hifumi.

This is a Rank 3 Charm gate, which we clear.

I’m Hifumi Togo...

I’m doing some research, so… Experimenting with new tactics is best to do alone in a place like this. ...Well, I suppose that doesn’t sound terribly plausible to someone who doesn’t play… Don’t mind me; please go ahead and pray.
Hifumi Togo seems to take a very tactical approach to playing shogi. I feel like I can learn some tactics for the Phantom Thieves from her shogi expertise. I should ask her if she’ll teach me...

Music: Alright (Elp Version)

...Huh? Um, you don’t necessarily have to learn from me, you know… There are other options… such as playing online.

Maaku bows.

Well then… Um… So… you like shogi?

Like me...? You’re a bit strange… but thank you. Um… OK, just a quick game then. Twenty seconds per move… If that’s all right with you.

...Saying that will likely make her lose interest. I guess I’ll have to play her. I’ll just move the pieces randomly...
I’ll start.

Music: Wicked Plan

The dragon which governs the blue sky has fallen into my hands. How do you intend to survive this?

Um, what

Hifumi slams the piece down onto the board with a resounding CLAP.

...It’s checkmate no matter how you look at it. Please concede.

To concede is an act of admitting that you have lost, with grace. If you aspire to become a shogi player, I recommend that you take your study of the game to heart. Thank you for playing… Well then, that will be all for today… If it’s all right with you, may I request another match sometime?

I feel… a gambler’s spirit emanating from you. Which is strange, since your style of play is that of a complete novice...

Huh…!? Oh, I-I’m sorry… However, I will instruct you under one condition… You become my playing partner so that I can research new moves. Is that agreeable?

Thank you very much… Well then, it’s a deal. I’ll teach you how to play, and you’ll assist me with my new moves.
I’ve made a deal with Hifumi...

Music: Interrogation Room

Ah shit, twice in one day!?

And yours weren’t by the wit of an amateur. You had a professional who regularly deals with such tactics. ...You have an idea on who that is, don’t you!?

Music: The Spirit

Star is the arcana of hope and inspiration, and represents lack of faith and despair when reversed. It’s all about idealism.

Hifumi’s skills don’t have a whole lot to do with each other, mostly just being a random grab bag of Confidant skills they wanted to shove in somewhere. They’re still pretty useful, though. I didn’t end up using Koma Sabaki much because it costs a turn (and also because all my main party eventually had SP Adhesive 3s on at all times), but I can imagine it being helpful to get yourself out of a jam or just make it easier to cover all your bases in terms of elemental affinities.

...I shall see you again, if the fates allow.
I feel like playing shogi with Hifumi has helped sharpen my Knowledge...

Maaku gains Knowledge +1.

Music: So Boring

A young woman wearing all brand clothing and an older man with gold accessories were arguing. Both were on their high horse, and even though they dressed fancily, it felt nouveau riche. Speaking of, the Japanese words for “high horse” and “nouveau riche” both originated as shogi terms. A lot of people aren’t familiar with shogi, but it’s good to know a little bit about it.

Goddammit, what is it with shogi right now?

So, Hamiru-kun. Have you seen this piece before?

This game has been localized well.

That’s right. This is the cursive form of the kanji for “gold,” which is written on the back of the pawn.

A weak piece like a pawn can become gold if you get it into the enemy’s camp, hence “nouveau riche.”

Maaku gains Knowledge +1.

By the way, nouveau riche like to wear expensive clothes because of a desire to be acknowledged. Once humans fulfill the basic needs of clothing, good, and shelter, our next desire is recognition. That’s why people try to make themselves seem bigger by flaunting their power through money.
Making yourself seem bigger… Reminds me of a frilled lizard.

Music: Tokyo Emergency

Already? I applied months ago.

So what are you going to do here today?

Music: Break it Down

I’ll do everything myself today, so you can just observe me and try to learn the ropes. Well, let’s begin!

Maaku gets 3200 yen.

Good work, Maaku-kun. Come back again when you have the time.

I bet doing this gift-making job has boosted your Kindness.

Maaku gains Kindness +2.

All right, we should head home.

Music: Beneath the Mask

The server went down because it was attacked from somewhere, I heard.
I hope they get caught soon. They’re really causing a lot of trouble for us!
I heard they’re some kind of scary foreign organization. Our police wouldn’t stand a chance.

The ISP has announced that the problems were caused by an external attack. The perpetrators did not issue a statement, but they are suspected to be an anonymous hacker group.
Attacking as a group… It must suck to be on the receiving end of that.

Seems like hackers are becoming a problem. Yikes.

Busy studying, eh? With these amazing study reference books, you’ll pass any exam you want!

Yeah! You better go buy… these awesome study reference books! If you’ll just sign here...

What!? You use up my time like this, and then you say you don’t want any of my products!? Why didn’t you just say so from the start!? Go away, you idiot kid, you’re wasting my time!

The ones who steal hearts? Ah, I wish they’d steal mine...
No! Akechi-kun says they’re dangerous. And he knows what he’s talking about!
You always fall for people too hard, too fast. You’re too clingy! That’s why you keep getting dumped!

Well, you see… I was already scammed once. And with all that’s happened, I’m a little cautious.
Look, lemme produce you. You’re absolutely fabulous. I’ll take care of you—you have my word.
I do really, really want to be a singer… But, can I trust you?

I’m gonna take a wild swing in the dark here and say the answer is no!

We pick up Flowerpedia from the Shinjuku bookstore while we’re out. It’ll come in handy for our job at the flower shop.

I remember you… You had a very abnormal destiny, as I recall. Please, take a seat.

For that much, it’d better not only change your fate, but also give you incredible luck. If you do end up buying one, we should go home and test it out. Well, what do you want to do?

What the hey, I’m a total dumbass and this seems like a great idea.

Thank you very much! Here you go.

It’s the smart thing to do, considering this is the only way to avoid misfortune. It’s already charged with a happiness aura, so you’ll feel the effects right away. Don’t forget to recharge it with moonlight every three days. Please stop by again and let me know how your fate changed. Goodbye...
I should head home...

Music: Break it Down

I was just about to close up shop, but I forgot to turn the stove off. I guess you start forgetting things more the older you get...

I wonder what kind of luck we’ll have this time around. It should be awesome, right? I mean, we paid a hundred thousand yen for this Holy-- Ow! What the heck!? Hey, can’t you keep this thing a little cleaner? I can’t be comfortable with all this gravel at the bottom of the… ...Wait, Maaku. I have a bad feeling about this.

Music: Tension


What’s gotten into you?

Huh? This tastes… salty!

Why are you tasting it!?

Hey, the Holy Stone is just salt!

I live a cursed existence

...Maaku? What’s going on?

You’re salty…? That reminds me, I was just about to head out and grab some salt for the shop. I’ll be back in a bit.

Wait, in that case… maybe the Holy Stone is supposed to help you get better at cooking!

This stupid cat

B-But if that’s not it, then what’s it for…? ...Hold on a second, the Holy Stone was supposed to change your future, not improve your cooking skills!

That fortune teller’s name was Chihaya, right? She clearly has some kind of mystical power… but this is just unacceptable. ...We need to go complain to her!

Or, and hear me out: we could slash her tires. Your idea’s great, but I like mine a lot too.

It turns out the Holy Stone I bought from Chihaya was a fake. I should go talk to her and try to figure out her true intentions...

This is what I deserve, isn’t it? For being so stupid?

Music: Beneath the Mask (Instrumental Version)

By the way, June’s almost over. We defeated Kaneshiro, so we can rest easy for a while… I guess? So, what do you want to do today? Maybe something like a trip to Mementos?

I mean, breaks are important… But we have those requests on the message board, so don’t forget to answer them.

Music: Beneath the Mask -Rain (Instrumental Version)

We head over to the diner. Maaku gains Guts +1 and Knowledge +3 from the rain.

Music: Beneath the Mask

Today, we interview a man who was once a con artist. In our talk with him, we’ll cover the skillfull methods of con men, which are constantly evolving.
They really put a lot of thought into these scams. I wish they’d put all that effort to better use.

Yeah, I saw that! They’re so cool! They’re like Featherman, taking on the bad guys like that!
When I said that, my parents got mad at me. They said there’s no way the Phantom Thieves are real.
Parents just don’t get it. All they do is nag and nag, telling us to study all the time.

Oh boy, time for the recurring adventures of our favorite elbow-bender!

Oh, sorry. This man just decided to lie down here.

No, he’s just drunk. Doesn’t he realize that it’s still dangerous around here?

Haha, who’re you imitating now? That’s one helluva quote.
The Phantom Thieves! You gotta check ‘em out, bro!

Yes, they’re the ones with the “calling card.” I heard they had an altercation with the yakuza.

Um, it’s the “mafia,” thank you.

They seem to be very popular among young people. Though I don’t know why.
There’s no telling why these days. However, I believe they may be able to build their own business.

How? Why, with the magic of Squarespace! Build it beautiful!™

*curious meow*
Oh, I mean… Excuse me, sir, but do you happen to know who put these dope—damn it! What I mean is, the flyers have this cool mark on them. Are they for a store that’s nearby?

Foreign Barker’s quest to be polite with the help of a cat is one of my favorite subplots in this game.

The thugs in Shibuya are actin’ up since the Phantom Thieves sent out that calling card of theirs. Aw, hell, it’s not all bad. I’m havin’ a lil’ bit of fun taking out a few of ‘em… *chuckle*

We need more Mega Fertilizer for our plant, so we pick some up.

Oh? She’s with a rube client.

Hm? She’s with a client… Sounds like they’re talking about the Holy Stone. Do you wanna eavesdrop on them?

Music: Suspicion

I-I’m fine. It’s my fault anyway, Yuya said so… He says he doesn’t want to hit me, but I just make him so mad…

Oh! Fuck this!

I suggest you break up with him. Things are only going to get worse at this rate.
B-But I’m the only person that cares about him! If I leave, how will he survive…? Please, is there any other way?
...Let us ask the tarot. O divine power, shed light upon her fate...

Yes, I’ve seen everything. Hm… I can sense a dark presence within your boyfriend. His heart seems to be possessed by a demon. This demon may hide itself away at times, but when it strikes, it will bring with it great misery.
Wh-What kind of misery…?
You will be hospitalized for severe injuries suffered in a domestic abuse incident, and he will be arrested.
What? Hospitalized!? A-Arrested!? I knew I shouldn’t have let Yuya throw my Holy Stone away! He said I shouldn’t be wasting my money on some dumb rock… that I should be giving it to him instead. This is my punishment for letting him do that, right? Please, let me buy another one from you!
Wh-What…? You want another?
My next stone will need to be even bigger. I’m a little low on cash at the moment… but you said I can pay in up to thirty-six installments, right?
Um, truthfully, I feel breaking up with him would be the best--
I can’t abandon Yuya!

There’s no way that could be true… right?

Man, this cat is dumb.

Right. It would make our jobs way easier if you could really change someone’s heart with a Holy Stone. It’s clear that Chihaya has some fortune telling skills, but that stone isn’t going to do anything… ...Hey, Maaku! Why don’t we change that “Yuya” guy’s heart ourselves? I mean, he’s hurting this woman here, right? This is the perfect chance for the Phantom Thieves to save her!

H-Hey! Were you eavesdropping on us? That’s an invasion of privacy, you know!

The demon within your boyfriend’s heart… cannot be exorcised by normal human methodologies. Fate is… absolute. A-Although, I guess you might be able to control the demon’s temper if you bought another Holy Stone… …...

This is Chihaya. Chihaya is a terrible person.

U-Um, I’m not entirely sure who you are… But do you know of any other way I can approach this problem…?

Mine? Oh… You’re talking about Yuya, aren’t you? It’s Yuya Uchimura… Um… why do you want to know? What are you planning on doing?

I’m surprised her immediate assumption isn’t just that I’ll fucking merc this dude.

Y-Yes! What do you expect to change with that meager information…?

What…? You honestly believe you can do something!?
…… I… I trust you.

Excuse me!?
It feels like he’s telling the truth. Besides, Yuya has all my money. He’s going to pay me back someday… But for now, I would rather put my trust in this one boy than in thirty-six payments for a Holy Stone.

Boy, you sure changed your mind about that Holy Stone quick.


You! What do you think you’re doing!? If you keep making false accusations like that, the divine power will rain punishment down upon you!

...Um, I never accused anyone of anything.

……? You look so pleased with yourself… Hm, I’ve seen everything. A vision of you groveling on the ground… Fate cannot be changed… and I will prove that fact to you! If that woman stays with her abusive boyfriend, she will meet a horrible injury within a year’s time. Now, if you honestly believe you can change her destiny, go ahead and try! But once you realize the error in your thinking, come back and let a true expert handle things. I will save her… with a Holy Stone…!

Christ, what an asshole.

Well then, are we done here? I’m way too busy for this!

And we get a new request, which we’ll have to make sure to complete some time in the near future.