||Persona 3 follows the setting convention established by its 3 predecessors (Persona 2 was two games). The place is a Japanese metropolis, and the time is March, 2009. The main character is an orphaned transfer student of the town's island-situated school, Gekkoukan High. As part of the package, he is assigned to a Dorm in Iwatodai. Every night at midnight most people transmogrify into coffins and a period called the Dark Hour takes place. In the Dark Hour, creatures named Shadows come out to attack those who haven't transmogrified. Some of those people possess a power called Persona, which allows them to summon a spiritual aid to fight the shadows...What makes this system work is the excellent characterization of all the NPCs, as well as the PCs. I actually felt myself connecting to all of them in a way that I can't in most RPGs. Some of the relationships are humorous, some are heartbreaking, and some are downright goofy. Each of the characters made an impact, and since you follow them through the course of the school year, you see them grow and develop as you interact. I applaud Atlus for not just for changing the formula, but for doing it well and making it work...I have to admit, I'm not a big fan of relationship games, but the relationship aspect in Persona 3 was immeasurably enjoyable, and I had so much fun with it, I'm playing it through again to try and cultivate some of the social links I neglected in my first playthrough...As you probably noticed from my Editor's Choice award, I loved Persona 3. It delivered an experience that was both novel and familiar, and with the exception of the anime cutscenes and some of the voice acting, did so with excellent quality. MegaTen fan or not, I whole-heartedly recommend this game to all RPG fans out there.