In 2017, Atlus, the developer of Project Re:Fantasy, released Persona 5, a game that forever changed the direction of the studio and finally helped it become one of the largest JRPG studios outside Japan, despite the fact that it was preceded by countless cult classic games. In recent years, the game has been followed by other JRPGs, such as Shin Megami Tensei 5 and the recent Soul Hackers 2. There was even an extended re-release in the form of Persona 5 Royal, however in 2017 Atlus announced its next big IP, a game from some of the key minds behind Persona 5: Project Re:Fantasy.
Re Project:Fantasy: A Fool’s Journey Begins was first announced even before Persona 5 was released in the west, which was shown live in December 2016, just three months after Persona 5 went on sale in Japan. Since then, the game has had only a few updates, usually in the form of interviews with some of the game’s employees, and despite numerous teasers, it has never been fully demonstrated. Since the previous precedent suggests that Persona 6 may be presented at the upcoming Persona concert, and not at the Tokyo Game Show, it is likely that the big Atlus game for Tokyo Game Show 2022 next week could be Project Re: Fantasy.
History of the Re project:Fantasy
After the announcement in December 2016, Project Re:Fantasy became the first Atlus franchise in the fantasy role-playing game genre, abandoning the modern settings of games such as Shin Megami Tensei 5 and Persona 5. The game is being developed by an internal team known as Studio. Zero, which is led by key employees of the developers of Persona 3, Persona 4 and Persona 5, including director Katsura Hasino, lead artist Shigenori Soejima and composer Shoji Meguro. The game was announced in the Japanese gaming magazine Weekly Famitsu with an announcement about the recruitment of developers, indicating that the preliminary preparation of the game has just begun.
After the announcement of updates, Project Re:Fantasy has been scarce for almost six years, and fans learned that the game is planned as a title for PlayStation 4, only from job listings on the Atlus website. In 2017, Hasino even confirmed that Studio Zero had started work on another non-fantasy project together with Project Re:Fantasy. In 2018, he confirmed that the development of the game is “halfway through”, and in 2019, a song from the upcoming game was discovered in the first official release of the game Studio Zero, an expanded reissue of “Catherine” 2010 under the title “Catherine: Full Body”.
Since 2019, Katsura Hashino has stated in the Atlus Weekly Famitsu New Year’s column that he hopes to properly reveal Project Re: Fantasy next year, but ultimately to no avail. In December 2020, he announced that the development of Project Re: Fantasy had reached its “apogee”, but no new information was received in 2021. Hashino repeated in the New Year’s segment of Weekly Famitsu next year that the development of the game is again approaching its apogee.
While this lack of updates and repetitive repetitions is somewhat disappointing, Project Re: Fantasy is one of Atlus’ most ambitious projects to date, created by a promising new veteran studio and affecting a type of setting that the studio has rarely touched before. In recent years, Atlus has also developed a habit of keeping silent about certain games until they are close to release, such as how Soul Hackers 2 was introduced just six months before its release, and how Shin Megami Tensei 5 lasted almost three years without any updates before that. it was re-shown only a year before its release. This probably means that when Project Re:Fantasy appears again, it will most likely be very close to its worldwide release.
Why Project Re:Fantasy Can Steal Tokyo Game Show 2022
Atlus is in a very interesting position for Tokyo Game Show 2022. Along with its parent company Sega, the studio has one of the largest booths at the Tokyo Game Show, but the only games that the studio has confirmed that it will demonstrate so far. there were updated ports Persona 5 Royal, Persona 4 Golden and Persona 3 Portable. Although Sega has several games of its own and several third-party games that it publishes in Japan, such as Hogwarts Legacy and Gotham Knights, such a large presence seems to be a studio showcasing only remasters. Atlus will host another Persona Super Live concert in October, and since the first Persona 5 trailer was shown at the 2015 concert, it is unlikely that the studio will show Persona 6 on the game show.
This leaves an opportunity for Atlus to showcase Project Re: Fantasy and give a name to a huge explosion ahead of the potential announcement of Persona 6 next month.