Shin Megami Tensei Persona 4 (PS2) Atlus 2008
Persona 4 is an interesting mix of high school simulation, dating simulation, RPG, and dungeon crawler all rolled into one funky package. As one of the last great RPGs released for the PS2, the game pushes the old system to it's limits. The graphics look really cool and unique, while the music makes for one of the best game soundtracks in gaming history. The real kicker here is the story. The protagonist moves from the city to the sleepy country side to stay with his uncle, who just happens to be a cop. As the game begins, a murder takes place that frightens the locals with it's mysterious and horrific circumstances. Suddenly a new TV channel appears that reveals the next victim for the serial killer and it is up to a group of students to stop the murderer before he kills them by entering a portal to the "Midnight Channel". Inside this bizarre world, people gain the power of the persona, or die as part of the killer's sick game. Another interesting note is each character's personal story told inside the dungeons, such as one character fighting his own homosexual behavior and another that fighting her anger with the celebrity scene, these sections are very well told and make your party members seem like real people. You can also make relationships with your classmates and even find a girlfriend, which is strange, but fun. The game ships with the soundtrack inside as a special bonus. Pick this one up before it becomes rare, like most of Atlus' games tend to do. Did I mention you get a talking teddy bear in your party?