On June 13, the gaming world was shocked when beloved Japanese role-playing game (JRPG) Persona 4 Golden debuted for PC via Steam. Previously, Golden, which was initially released in 2012, was only available for the PlayStation Vita console, while the original Persona 4 could be purchased for the PlayStation 2 and PlayStation 3. This represented a significant move for the Persona franchise, which had previously been associated exclusively with console releases.
Fans were initially skeptical, but Persona 4 Golden, which tells the story of a group of teen detectives tasked with solving a murder in a small Japanese countryside town, sold exceptionally well on Steam and received several positive reviews. It sold over half a million copies within its first month of availability. It quickly claimed the title of "most-played JRPG" on Steam, despite having competition in the form of much newer games such as previous title holder Final Fantasy XV Windows Edition.
Sega, who was responsible for publishing the port, admitted that Persona 4 Golden for Steam was the company's strongest performer in 2020 sales reports. It represented a saving grace for Sega, which otherwise struggled due to arcades, pachinko machines, and other in-person entertainments performing poorly due to COVID-19 lockdowns. Sega attributed the success to Steam being an accessible platform during the pandemic - various consoles are in short supply all around the world. In contrast, Steam is easily downloadable for anyone who owns a PC.
Speaking to GameIndustry.biz, a representative for Sega indicated that Golden's success would lead to more PC ports of JRPGs and other titles in the future. "Going forward," said Sega, we intend to aggressively promote the porting of previously launched titles to Steam and other new platforms."
Persona 4 Golden is available on Steam for the low price of $19.99. Persona newbies and longtime P4 fans alike will find something to enjoy with new characters, new battle techniques, and an extended timeline with more playable events, including beach and mountain vacations.
Which Sega games and RPGs would you like to see made available on Steam in the future? Let us know!