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How do you deal with post-game emptiness? What games were the most impactful for you?

I just finished Persona 5 Royal, I played it totally blind, and after 110 hours and little over a month of playing, I watched the credits roll and the game come to a close. I was genuinely emotional and pretty sad when the credits finished and the game ended for real. I did not want it to end, ever, and it never felt like it would, so when it finally got to that point it was bittersweet. I had slept on the game for years, and didn’t even bother looking at Royal when it came out, but I eventually bought it and boy was I stupid for waiting so long and passing this game off and another annoying generic JRPG, but I’m also glad I didn’t play the original.

It was one of the most immersive experiences I’ve ever had with a game, and it actually felt like I was connecting with and interacting with the characters personally, especially considering how much I took my time with the dialogue and social sim elements, which were easily my favorite part of the game, and saying the goodbyes at the end to all the confidants I maxed out was definitely a great touch.

Overall, this was a far superior experience compared to my time with any other Atlus game, and it was hugely impactful to me, my mood, and probably my character overall, now that I’ll have time to really sit back and look back on the time I spent with the game and really think about the themes, characters, and messages. Simply put, it was an extremely unique experience, as flawed as the game was.

Definitely one of the most important games I’ve played in my life and I’m going to look back on it extremely fondly in 10 years, and probably for the rest of my life. It really was a one of a kind experience, and it definitely would not have been so fantastic had the game not been as extremely long as it was, and filled with as much great writing and character interactions as it was as well. It basically ended up feeling like a second life after a bit of playing, and no other game has ever done that for me, it was insane how real this game works and these characters felt to me. Maybe it’s the fact that I’m still so young and a lot of this game reflects what I wish high school was like for me that really got to my heart, who knows. The English dub also being as amazing as it was (apparently they fixed a lot of bad localization from the original game?) helped with the immersion and attachment as well.

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This was my first time ever playing Persona 5 but I got the true ending anyhow, and I much, much prefer the ending of everyone going their separate ways and the open ended ending implied in the post credits scene than I did the original game’s ending. I’m very glad that I never chose to play the original P5, and I am immensely satisfied with the ending of the third semester and how it made me feel. It’s nearly perfect, and gave me an amplified version of the same feeling I rarely ever get when I finish a super long and impactful show, and know it’s really over for good, and I’ll never get to see any new interactions with these characters ever again, or ever be able to experience this game and these characters and this story for the first time again.

I have zero interest in going for true 100% completion or trying NG+ out either, it just wouldn’t be the same for me, and it would ruin a lot of what made the experience special for me the first time around, but that’s just me personally. This game would be a ton of fun to min-max in and experiment with if I was as invested in the gameplay as I was the story, the world, and the characters. As for me I got the platinum and the award for spending $500,000 at the clinic and that’s good enough for me.

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It basically feels just like when I wake up from a really detailed, immersive, and really nice dream, just knowing that I’ll never be able to continue it ever, as if the people I met in the dream are just living their own lives and still having experiences as far as my brain is concerned, but I’ll just never know or see them again. I just feel empty and detached from games now and don’t even know what to do. I’m not super depressed or anything, like I said the game improved my mood and way of looking at the world a ton, and it was an amazing experience, it’s just that I just don’t know what to do now in terms of games. Maybe now I’ll actually try Catherine again, I don’t know, but one thing I know for a fact is that nothing will ever come close to replicating my first time playing P5R ever again.

Does anyone else get this feeling after finishing a hugely impactful game? How do you deal with it? Do you like this feeling or do you hate it? I personally really enjoy this feeling in a few ways, it doesn’t come around in my life often, and this time especially has been way heavier than ever before.

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