This role-playing game (RPG) remake was fantastic on the Vita, but its release on PC means that a whole new audience of fans will be exposed to this classic game. Persona 4 Golden dives deep into the franchise's well-known mechanics of detailed story development through "Social Links," which are governed by how much time you invest into getting to know your fellow classmates. It requires investment in becoming acquainted with the people in your life, taking on odd jobs or quests they ask you to complete, and spending time to make sure that they feel like you care. The same can be said for the randomly generated dungeons, which pack turn-based battles into twisting, cramped hallways. These tense, challenging fights between your party members and strange monsters have a specter of time pressure hanging in the background. If you can't defeat creatures in dungeons and save victims within a set number of days, the game ends. It's the balancing act between your personal life and your otherworldly investigator life that adds tension, drama, and emotion to a challenging game, and it will give dozens of hours of entertainment. Plus, it looks great in full HD, which the Vita and PS2 simply couldn't produce at the time, so visually, this feels like a completely new game.
All of this being said, the challenge is one of the biggest issues that some may find with Persona 4 Golden. The difficulty can spike on some dungeon levels, which can make improving your characters, boosting the levels of your collected Personas, and still accomplishing your goals a very steep climb. Add to that the limited number of save points in dungeons, and some newcomers to the franchise or to RPGs in general may be daunted. Similarly, the game's take on a character's questioned sexuality is cringeworthy. It was questionable in the original title, and it just feels antiquated and offensive now. It's a large blemish on an otherwise fantastic port of a classic game.