‘Persona 5’ tips: How to make the most of your time in Tokyo

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Persona 5 is absolutely massive, a 100-hours-long role-playing game with nearly endless choices when it comes to how you spend your time. Will you hang out with social contacts? Go shopping? Read a book or watch a DVD? Grind some combat? The choice is always yours, but it can be difficult to make.

Luckily, P5 is full of time-saving features and general improvements that make it the best game in the series. Use these tips to ensure you’re making the most of your time in Persona 5.

General tips

Do what you want

The best way for new Persona players trying to figure out what to do in Persona 5 is simply spend your time how you want. Hang out with the confidants you like, or who you think will provide the best benefits. Train up the stats you think will be important. There’s not really a way to waste time in P5, as almost anything you can spend a time slot on will wind up providing some benefit.

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Check other players’ choices

If you press the controller’s touchpad at any point while playing (except in a dungeon) you can see how other players chose to spend that time slot. Use that to see your options and weigh your choices. This is especially helpful when a teacher asks you a question in class — though it doesn’t work during exams, when you’ll have to resort to old-fashioned Googling.

You can decorate your room

Once you start taking confidants out to various locations of your choice you might get unique items with which you can decorate your room. It’s a small but fun personal touch. Examine the empty shelf next to your bed to get started.

Social links

Check the map

By pulling up the map with R1, you can actually see which locations have confidants — there’s a little icon next to a train stop if there’s a buddy there. Even better, you can get more info about them if you highlight that stop and hit the square button, including who’s there and whether your link with them is close to ranking up.

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Talk to new party members to start their social links

Whenever you add a new member to the Phantom Thieves, you have to actually find them in the world during the day and chat them up to activate them as confidants and start ranking them up. It’s easy to forget to do so, since, until you talk to them the first time, they won’t text you to hang out like the others will.

You can check the next confidant skill

If you navigate through the confidants section in the pause menu, you can actually see the next skill or perk that ranking up a confidant will provide, as well as what level you need to get the rank to. This can be useful when deciding what to do.

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Grind social links

If you want to advance your social links, you’ll sometimes have to hang out with them even if your bond isn’t about to rank up. Luckily, there are some things you can do to make them rank up more quickly (indicated by the number of musical notes that pop out of their heads during the scene):

  • Have a Persona equipped that matches the confidant (you can check in the pause menu)
  • The dialogue options you choose matter — pick the right ones
  • Choose hang-out destinations that match the person (more important as the map opens up later in the game)
  • Buy all the gifts you can in the underground mall and elsewhere, so you always have options when it comes up (applies to characters you can romance)
  • If the confidant you want to rank up isn’t around, pray for them at the Meiji shrine (once you unlock it).

Save-scum

Save-scumming refers to the practice of manually saving your game before undergoing an important action or choice, then re-loading that save if something goes wrong. If you’re stressed about making a mistake while building up your social links, you always figure out the best destinations, dialogue choices, and gifts through trial and error.

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