Video game Persona 5 is being turned into a co-op card game next year.
Persona 5 was released in 2016 as the latest major instalment in the long-running Persona series - itself a spin-off from the even longer-running Shin Megami Tensei franchise - before seeing an expanded re-release under the title of Persona 5 Royal a few years later.
The Japanese RPG follows the main character - nicknamed Joker - as he joins forces with a group of fellow students that come to call themselves the Phantom Thieves. The group works to change the corrupted hearts of wrong-doers (along with some less villainous targets) by delving into their subconscious and stealing their heart, visualised as a series of heists in themed ‘palace’ dungeons populated by enemies and bosses.
As in the rest of the Persona series, the party of heroes are able to summon their psyches in the form of personas, which fight with enemy ‘shadows’ in turn-based battles. Some shadows can be turned into persona allies, allowing the player to swap between creatures with different abilities, weaknesses and strengths - which play into an elemental-based combo system.
Between dungeons and fights, the player can improve their relationship with other members of their party and recruit new allies through various social activities, from day-to-day school life to exploring the districts of Tokyo at night.
The Persona 5 Royal card game will be designed by Emerson Matsuuchi, the designer behind Century: Spice Road - as well as its sequels and Golem spin-offs - and the hidden movement board game Specter Ops, inspired by stealth-action video game series Metal Gear Solid. (Matsuuchi was also working on the official Metal Gear Solid board game before it was cancelled, RIP.)
Machi Koro, Dinosaur Island and The Fox Experiment studio Pandasaurus will publish the upcoming board game. The Persona 5 board game was announced with very little detail, beyond Matsuuchi confirming it will be a “cooperative card-based strategy game” in which players control the Phantom Thieves seen in the video game and work together to “change the world”.
The Persona 5 Royal card game is expected to release in Q4 2023.