Is an AI run a challenge?- Persona 5 Royal

Hey, Gamers! So this week, we’re talking about Persona 5 Royal again because… it’s me. After playing Strikers on stream for weeks, I wanted to play Royal… but I wanted to do a challenge run. I did some googling and someone suggested playing it Persona 3 style, which meant giving the AI free rein. I was going to do this with a no items run… but then I remembered about Okumura’s boss fight and decided against this. So, I’ve been doing an AI-run! Here is my experience after about 4 weeks.

So, this AI is good. Really good. I was worried that they wouldn’t Baton Pass and interact properly, but it does. Not only that, but it really picks the best option. They don’t waste SP if there isn’t a need (for the most part), for example, if an enemy could be taken down with just a plain ol’ attack. That was something I was seriously concerned about. The whole preserving SP that comes naturally to me after so many hours of playing this game does not come naturally to the AI, but they’re also not stupid with their SP usage which is a relief.

I also learned very early on that the AI will use items… even if it’s not needed. For example, Morgana brought Ann back to life when the battle was nearly over with our only revival item. After getting over that shock, I decided very quickly that I needed money and a lot of it because if they were going to use items, I would need to buy more. Part of me likes this because there are just some items that I buy and don’t tend to use so I’m hoping that they’ll use them but at the same time… I only had one revival item and they’re expensive early on in the game.

The biggest challenge, without a doubt, is SP preservation. It is, quite frankly, awful. I’ve had to come out of the palace so many times when I went into grind, and we made minimal progress. This means that the time that I would usually spend on getting my social stats higher or on confidants is wasted by more palace days. For example, I know that in a normal playthrough, I can do Kamoshida’s palace in one day. I’ve done it at least twice in Royal, so it’s definitely something I know I can do. I’ve been playing this for like 3 or 4 weeks, I think we’re on 10+ hours and there are less than 7 days left. I think there’s only been one day where I did not go into the palace so far, and we’re still not done. I haven’t even gotten my kindness up to rank 2 to start Ann’s confidant; same with Guts, I don’t have it high enough to do Takemi’s confidant.  The latter is what is really holding me back because rank 5 with Takemi unlocks SP recovery items at the Clinic. I could probably do the palace in one day if I had a lot of SP recovery. I usually buy 5/10 at a time, but I think I’ll probably need around 20-30 for a full palace in one day. A benefit to doing the palace in multiple days is that I can’t go out at night, which limits my options… which means I am much more inclined to make coffee, which is SP recovery. I’m trying to advance Sojiro’s confidant to unlock curry but I can’t remember if that’s blocked by kindness (I’m 60% sure it’s not but I’m just a bit hesitant to advance it so far so early in the same).

So, is it a challenge? Yes and no.

The actual fighting part isn’t a challenge. I feel like I’ve turned it onto easy mode. The hardest thing is that grinding is harder due to the lack of SP.

The issue with the whole SP thing isn’t just that there’s not enough SP to go through a whole palace, or that grinding is much more difficult. The hardest thing is that it increases the difficulty of the time management side of things to the max. It makes it so difficult to advance confidants and increase social skills which are so vital to the real-life side of the game. I mean, the confidant part is even crucial to the metaverse sides of things, and the lack of high social stats is really holding me back in the confidant progression.

I think I might do an update/ part 2 to this post when I’m finished with this route. I just wanted to share my experience with it for now. After all, I am honestly so shocked at how good the AI is in fighting because I’ve never really heard of AI’s being good in video games, and I never thought that this playthrough would have such a crucial effect on the real-life side of the game.

So, that’s it for this post, Gamers! If you liked this post, give it a ‘like’ and hit follow for more gaming or Persona 5 content! If you’re interested in this playthrough, you can watch me on 2nerds_1game on Twitch! It should be linked on my homepage, so make sure to check that out if you’re interested! Make sure to check out my social medias to stay updated and have a say in what I post! And please leave your thoughts and feelings in the comments below, I try to reply as soon as I can. See you next time, Gamers!

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