What are the differences between Soul Hackers, Shin Megami Tensei, & Persona?

Three series, united by demons.

Soul Hackers 2 is a JRPG that combines a rich futuristic storyline with tactical turn-based battles. Despite having a different setting and characters, it is a spiritual sequel to the original Soul Hackers game that came out 25 years ago and is considered part of publisher Atlus’ Devil Summoner series. So, what are the differences between Soul Hackers, Shin Megami Tensei, and Persona?

The differences between the three main series are story and gameplay based, but all are related. The idea of Devil Summoners calls back to Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Summoner, released in 1995, followed by the original Devil Summoner: Soul Hackers console game in 1997. However, you don’t need to have played any previous games to fully enjoy Soul Hackers 2, as it has an entirely standalone setting and storyline.

Related: Soul Hackers 2 – Do you need to play the first game?

Just as the Persona and Shin Megami Tensai games are set in different universes, Soul Hackers 2 has its own unique setting. All the games are tied together via shared mythology, which could be seen more as a multiverse than a universe. Each game has a self-contained storyline, so no knowledge of previous titles will give you added background to the location.

In terms of the game itself, Soul Hackers 2 has a UI and general style that closely resembles recent Persona titles. While the world’s look and feel are similar to that of Shin Megami Tensei 4, the general high-quality anime style is reminiscent of both. It has the party dynamic and impact of relationships prevalent in the Persona series, and the leveling-up and importance of your demons hark back to the Shin Megami Tensei games. The way Soul Hackers 2 deals with fusing demons to make unique combinations and how that affects your characters' strengths and weaknesses in turn-based combat makes it feel fresh. This, alongside the unique setting, is enough to make it stand independently.

Need to know if the Soul Hackers 2 DLC is worth it? Or how many demons are in Soul Hackers 2? Find out at Pro Game Guides!

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About the Author

Chris Marling is a writer and editor with more than 20 years of experience across newspapers, magazines, and websites. Based in the UK, he has written professionally on everything from tech to tearooms. But his real passion is gaming, going right back to the Atari 2600 - and especially RPGs and MMOs. He cut his teeth on games such as The Realm and Anarchy Online. But 20 years on still gets excited about exploring each new world. When not online, you'll find him gaming analog-style around the table. Chris has had five of his own board games published, including Pioneer Days and Armageddon.

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What are the differences between Soul Hackers, Shin Megami Tensei, & Persona?

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