Persona 2: Innocent Sin, known as Persona 2: Sin in Japan, is the second game in the Persona series on the PlayStation. Innocent Sin is followed by Persona 2: Eternal Punishment, which together, create one overarching story.
Innocent Sin focuses on protagonist Tatsuya Suou dealing with rumors in his city coming true, due to the Joker. Along the way, Tatsuya and his friends must fight the Joker and figure out Joker's identity, as well as protect their city from the second coming of Hitler and his army of robot Nazis known as the Last Battalion.
Persona 2: Innocent Sin begins three years after the events of the first Persona, in 1999. The location is Sumaru City, a large fictional metropolitan area set in modern day Japan. Sumaru City becomes cursed after events during the beginning of the game that cause any rumor that spreads enough to become true.
The silent protagonist of the game is Tatsuya Suou. Tatsuya is dragged into the plot by Lisa Silverman, a fellow student who idolizes Tatsuya, when conflict between Seven Sisters High School (Sevens) and Kasugayama High School (Cuss High) begins. The two come across Eikichi Mishina, the self-proclaimed boss of Cuss High. After getting into a fight, the three play a game summoning the Joker, a mysterious antagonist rumored to appear before anyone that calls him. Anyone who fails to tell Joker their wishes, either because they lack one or refuse to tell him, has their "ideal energy" stolen, reducing them to ambition-less shells called Shadow Selves. Once summoned, Joker claims that the three students had done something terrible to him in the past, and is angered when they do not recognize him. Swearing revenge and wielding an odd Crystal Skull, he departs, leaving the trio confused and eager to learn more about him. Later on they make a point of saying that Tatsuya and the Joker look alike.
Eventually, the three students are joined by Maya Amano and her friend, Yukino Mayuzumi, who returns from the first game and is already familiar with demons and capable of using her Persona. The five then search for Joker, the source of all rumors that spread becoming reality. Their search leads the group to clash with a cult-like following known as the Masked Circle. It is later revealed that the original Masked Circle was the group of friends including Tatsuya, Maya, Lisa, Eikichi, and Jun when they were all kids. After debunking numerous rumors and defeating several members of the Masked Circle, the group meets with Joker, who then reveals himself to be Jun Kurosu, the fifth childhood friend and member of the original Masked Circle. Eventually, the widely spread rumor that the Fuhrer had survived World War II with his secret forces, the Last Battalion, surfaces and his forces invade Sumaru City. Tatsuya and the others fight off both remaining Masked Circle members and the Last Battalion soldiers to obtain the crystal skulls, defeating their own Shadows in the process.
Towards the end of Innocent Sin, Tatsuya and the others board an alien spaceship known as the Xibalba, another rumor that had spawned into reality. In the deepest parts of Xibalba, the group finds the Fuhrer, wielding the Spear of Destiny (the spear that pierced Jesus Christ that is said to leave a mortal wound the second it strikes flesh) and defeats him.
At the conclusion of the game, it is revealed that all of the events had been orchestrated by Nyarlathotep in an attempt to show that the negatives of humanity would outshine the positives, contrary to Philemon's beliefs. Nyarlathotep then takes his true form and fights Tatsuya and the others. After the fight, Nyarlathotep manipulates Maya Okamura into striking Maya Amano with the Spear of Destiny, killing her quickly. With the prophecy fulfilled, the Earth's rotation suddenly stops, destroying everything on the surface of the planet, save for Sumaru City. Philemon tells Tatsuya that there is a way to prevent Maya's death and stop Nyarlathotep from destroying the world. Tatsuya agrees to create a new timeline in which Nyarlathotep is not successful, in exchange for everyone's memories.
- Tatsuya Suou: The game's protagonist, a young man who attends Seven Sisters High. He has a mature and cool attitude that makes him popular outside of school as well as among his peers. Ironically, he is a loner who does his best to avoid being involved with anyone. He always carries a special lighter and habitually takes it out to flip its lid open and shut.
- Maya Amano: A cheerful and bright woman who naturally draws others to her with her considerateness and affable nature. She spends her busy days as a reporter for "Coolest", a popular magazine aimed at high school students. Her prized possession is a stuffed bunny that evokes memories of her father.
- Lisa Silverman: A second-year at Sevens Sister High. Nicknamed "Ginko", she looks clearly Caucasian with her blonde hair and blue eyes, but speaks fluent Japanese. She was born to parents who were naturalized as Japanese citizens. She has a crush on Tatsuya and follows him around with little regard to Tatsuya's feelings on the matter.
- Eikichi Mishina: A second-year at Kasugayama High, nicknamed "Death Boss." (Though, due to his well-known habit of pantsing those he beats in a fight, he's also called "Undie Boss" behind his back.) He is the boss of a gang of delinquents at his school and also front man in his band. He makes his underlings call him "Michel" rather than his real name. He tends to take what people say too personally, is easily swayed, and is often a bit too taken with himself and could be viewed as an extreme narcissist.
- Yukino Mayuzumi: An active student at a vocational school for photography. She's paying her way through school as an apprentice to a freelance photojournalist, as she hopes to become a professional photographer. Though she has grown out her hair and settled down a little since the SEBEC scandal and time at St. Hermelin High, she's as fiercely protective and caring as ever.
- Jun Kurosu: A third-year Kasugayama High transfer who hasn't been seen attending classes for some time. Well-versed in hanakotoba, and often seen sporting flowers on his uniform jacket. Wears an unusually expensive-looking watch on his left wrist. Jun is also a very close friend to Tatsuya, ever since they were kids.
PlayStation Portable Remake
Just like Megami Ibunroku Persona, Innocent Sin received a PSP remake on April 14th, 2011 in Japan.
The remake features an updated user interface, tweaked character portraits designed by Shigenori Soejima and Masayuki Doi and heavily improved controls, but it still keeps most of the game's original gameplay systems. The battle system, however, no longer uses the Strategy menu from the PS1 version, but adds adjustable difficulties and battle cut-in portraits like in Persona 3 and Persona 4. Many enemies and bosses had their Attack, Defense, Magic Attack, and Magic Defense stats lowered, resulting in an easier experience compared to the PS1 version. The remake also includes Sumaru Climax Theatre, a theater which features side-stories written by various other authors from Atlus, including one written by Tadashi Satomi, the original scenario writer for the first 3 games. The stories are like mini-quests where in the end, players will have to face a boss. Additionally, players can make their own quests in the Japanese version of the game (the feature was omitted from the English release).
In addition, players can select whether they want to hear the old soundtrack of the original game or listen to about 100 new arrangements of the original soundtrack. The arrangements make use of guitar sounds, J-Pop, and other modern music genres. The voices have been remastered for the Japanese version, but Atlus did not re-record anything due to some of the original voice actors having retired.
There is an all-new opening movie created by Studio Satelight titled "Unbreakable Tie." The opening was supervised by Hirotaka Marufuji with music by Lotus Juice. The original opening is still viewable in the game's gallery.
Two Bundle Packs were released in European regions, the first bundled with Persona 3 Portable and the second with The Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky, both of these were released on the Playstation Network as Digital Only Bundle in 2012.
PSP Remake Images and Screenshots
- The PS1 version of Persona 2: Innocent Sin has never been officially released for North America or Europe for unknown reasons, though it is widely speculated that the appearance of Adolf Hitler as an antagonist, the use of Nazi iconography, and the potential homosexual relationship between protagonist Tatsuya Suou and fellow party member Jun Kurosu prevented the game from being greenlit for localization upon the game's initial release.
- In an interview with GameInformer, Gail Salamanca, a member of Atlus USA's localization team, mentions another possible reason for a lack of localization was simply due to the developers not having the resources, manpower, or being able to schedule the time to localize the game for an American audience, with the team already having been underway with development of Eternal Punishment, and adds that "...We pretty much had to let it go. Though it wasn't for the lack of b--ching and moaning by the US staff", likely referring to the aforementioned issues.
- Despite this, the game received a fan translation patch for use with PS1 emulators, giving the game English text, but leaving the Japanese voice acting intact. Atlus became aware of the fan patch early on in its creation and has made no attempts to halt its development or distribution.
- Persona 2: Innocent Sin was referenced in Persona 3. The game's subtitle serves as the title for a popular fictional MMORPG in the the English version of Persona 3, "Innocent Sin Online". During the course of the game, the protagonist has the opportunity to play the game on Sundays and on holidays as a requirement for the Hermit Social Link. In Persona 3 Portable the MMORPG "Innocent Sin Online" and consequently the Social Link from it can only be initiated if the male protagonist is chosen. In addition, the protagonist's character in "Innocent Sin Online" is called Tatsuya and the person representing the Hermit Social Link (who the protagonist interacts with in the MMORPG) uses the handle Maya.
- In both Innocent Sin and Eternal Punishment, the game's developers make frequent cameos.
- The PSP remake of Innocent Sin is the first Megami Tensei game to have its European release announced before the North American release.
- Persona 2 is the only game in the Persona franchise that does not have an official manga adaptation. However there is a spin off manga and several fan-made manga anthologies (Only one of these anthologies ‘Persona 2: Tsumi Comic Anthology’ at this time has been fully fan translated but the rest remain unscanned/untranslated)
- Released alongside the sequel Eternal Punishment, a bonus CD revealed a trailer for an anime called Persona 2: Another Self. It was planned to be an ova/anime series retelling both Innocent Sin and Eternal Punishment, but the production was cancelled for unknown reasons.
- Persona 2: Innocent Sin PS1 official site (JPN)
- Persona 2: Innocent Sin remake official site (JPN)
- Persona 2: Innocent Sin remake official site (NA)
- Persona 2: Innocent Sin remake official site (EU)
- A Graphic of Overall Persona Series Physical Game Sales in Japan for February 2020 Persona Central (Reggie, February 26, 2020)
- Bundle Release on Ghostlight's Website