Atlus Is Taking Persona 5 Spoilers Very Seriously, Disables PS4 Share Functionality

Spoilers are a huge problem when it comes to story-driven games. The accessibility of the internet has allowed thousands of people to mistakenly or intentionally spoil major plot points for games over the years, including some of the best endings of all-time from Red Dead Redemption to The Last of Us.

In response to these tragedies, some publishers have made an effort to do what they can to prevent spoilers from occurring in the first place. Atlus stands among them, but has done it in a way that has some fans riled up.

In an e-mail sent to Game Revolution and all other press outlets who received a Persona 5 review copy, Atlus has explicitly requested that reviewers don’t spoil the contents of the story. It goes as far as to write, “Please PLEASE do not post any specific plot points or story spoilers, and only talk about the game in broad strokes.” It follows up by clearly describing how to write about the story without specifically mentioning plot points.

This doesn’t happen often when it comes to press e-mails, but isn’t too out of the ordinary for a highly anticipated RPG. However, in a follow-up e-mail it became clear that it’s taking this much more seriously than other publishers. A portion of the e-mail reads:

 

This being a Japanese title with solely a single-playthrough story means Japan is very wary about it. Sharing is currently blocked through the native PS4 UI. However, if you do plan on streaming, video guidelines above apply except length. If you decide to stream past 7/7 (I HIGHLY RECOMMEND NOT DOING THIS, YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED), you do so at the risk of being issued a content ID claim or worse, a channel strike.

Initially, we were under the impression that sharing would only be blocked until release. However, that’s not the case. At launch and extending indefinitely, you will not be able to take screenshots or capture footage while playing Persona 5. Atlus stands firmly on this decision.

Although implemented with good intentions, this has summoned outrage from a large number of fans who were excited to play and share their time playing the game. Persona 5 and its cast of characters are visually attractive, serving well for screenshots, after all. This is the kind of game that encourages you to share your experience.

In addition, the PS4’s share functionality is seen as one of its best traits. Being able to take a screenshot or capture footage at the press of a button is something prior generation consoles weren’t able to achieve. To block this feature seems backwards to a large number of fans.

It is worth mentioning that this can be circumvented by using a capture card. However, such equipment costs $100 or more, and requires an inconvenient setup process that is a sharp contrast from the PS4’s integrated share functionality. Alternatively, you can stream your session online using Twitch or UStream.

Despite these efforts, spoilers have already leaked online. Many Twitter users who have posted with the #Persona5 hashtag have reported that they’ve been mentioned or private messaged with details of specific events that happen throughout the game, including its surprising ending.

As much as an inconvenience as this might be to some gamers, it’s kind of charming that Atlus cares this much. It wants you to experience the story to its fullest, and has acted on it for better or worse.

The good news is that Persona 5 is hitting western shores next Tuesday, and it’s everything we hoped for.