Playing through Persona 5: Royal has been fun and has also given me a writing idea! The characters in this game have phenomenal character development and I wanted to create a list of the characters that I found the most inspiring in Persona 5. I’m currently at Kaneshiro’s palace in Persona 5: Royal so most of these memories will be from Persona 5.
Makoto feels useless as the student body president. Everyone relies upon her to change things, but the principal only wants to use her to find information on the Phantom Thieves. She also laments not trying to do anything about Kamoshida’s abuse despite the whole school knowing. On top of that her sister loses her temper and calls her “useless” making her REALLY feel useless.
She is desperate to prove she can help the student body so she forces the Phantom Thieves to help. Seeing the twisted desires of the mafia boss, Kaneshiro, she becomes enraged that adults keep using her and stands up for herself. She becomes this badass character willing to stick up for others and fight against corruption in the palaces. She’s very intelligent as she is somehow able to understand the mechanics of a palace like cognitive distortion. Even though it was reckless of her to confront a mafia boss upfront, she did it to help the Phantom Thieves and also because she really wants to help the student body. She really is a strong leader which is why she does make a good student body president. She really listens to the students and wants to help them despite the adults not making it easy on her to help the students. I admire how strong of a person she is and that she is willing to go to extreme lengths to protect the students at her school.
Futaba has agoraphobia. Her mom died in a car accident and she firmly believed she caused her mother to die. Turns out her mother was forced to die because she knew too much about the mental shutdowns. The adults who caused the mother to have a mental shutdown so she would die told Futaba it was all her fault her mother died. Futaba was then passed around to awful relatives until she ended up in Sojiro Sakura’s care who wanted her to be happy and tried to care for her.
Futaba does have a lot of courage. She asked the Phantom Thieve’s to change her heart which is a big risk considering no one knows how the Phantom Thieves change hearts. She also let them into her room and see her after they explained that she needed to help them open up her Palace more (If a person believes they are safe, the palace will only let a person enter so far until that person believes that their defenses are down).
She also is courageous because after her Palace is defeated, she tries really hard to go out in public. The protagonist and his friends help her come out of her shell, but she still has to take steps to go out and be around people and try to attend high school. I admire her for working so hard to overcome her agoraphobia and learn to trust people.
Ryuiji has had a rough life. His father was abusive and his mother is struggling to make money since the father left. Ryuiji got a temper from seeing the way his mother was treated which Kamoshida targeted so Ryuiji would lash out at him so Kamoshida could disband the track team and blame it all on Ryuiji.
Despite appearing tough, Ryuiji is a really sweet kid. He meets the protagonist and after having to escape their first palace without even knowing each other or what a palace even was, he decides that this guy is going to be his best friend. Ryuiji really listens to the protagonist and wants to be a good friend. My favorite scene is when they get ramen together at the beginning of the game and Ryuiji wants to make sure the protagonist has enough food and listens to him talk about why he is on probation. I love that Ryuiji just genuinely wants his friends to be happy and tries to look out for them.
After her friend is physically and sexually assaulted by Kamoshida and then hospitalized, Ann vows to first seek revenge. She spares Kamoshida even though he is an absolutely awful human being. She decides to fight against corrupt adults and she also feels inspired to grow a stronger heart. Even though it takes her a while to learn how inner strength cannot be grown through little things such as not getting upset over criticism or not eating sweets. I enjoyed maxing her bond in Persona 5 because I enjoyed seeing her grow as a person and how she was just so caring towards others.
The protagonist has to move to Tokyo after he is put on probation. He attempted to stop a drunk man from sexually assaulting a young woman. Because this man was a very important political figure, he was able to get away with everything and the protagonist got a sentence for assaulting him. Despite having people look down on him and judge him, he still manages to be compassionate towards others. He helps people and makes friends just because he cares about others. He is a strong leader of the Phantom Thieves and he works hard to make sure that corrupt adults change. I admire his courage and his willingness to change the future and create a better world.
Let me know what characters from Persona 5 or other games you thought were inspiring?