A beta test has dropped for the upcoming Persona 5 mobile spin-off The Phantom X which has given people a look at the new characters and gameplay, it has also revealed that several of Atlus’ popular demon/persona designs have been subject to censorship.
This was compiled into the Imigur file by Twitter user @wudabed. is likely to comply with the censorship laws in China, which is currently the only region where the game is confirmed to be launched.
The game features newly drawn artwork for the Personas used and thought in battle. Several of these new illustrations have been altered to remove the partial nudity present in their original designs such as with Lilim, Lamia, and Succubus who have been covered with new layers of clothing.
Furthermore, Chinese regulations also state that you cannot depict skeletons in games either so demons that have prominent skulls incorporated into their designs like Hell Biker and Bugbear have also had these elements removed. The vicious goblin Bugbear now has had his stomach sewn shut and Hellbiker has a hockey mask-looking helmet. It should also be noted he is currently the only known fiend [skeleton demon] that is appearing in the game.
China currently has tight censorship laws for what content is allowed on a video game for it to be approved for release in the country. According to the Neon Doctrine CCO Vlad Tsypljak who has published several games in China:
“There is a bunch of other stuff [rules and regulations] you have to implement into a game [to publish it in China]. No violence, gore, blood, skeletons, time travel, religious themes, political themes, and more”.
While censorship isn’t ideal, I don’t think changing the designs of the demons will affect Persona 5 X in a way that is truly detrimental, or at least from what we’ve seen of the game. I dare say I think Lilim and Lamia are actually really pretty good in their new threads.
In general, the new artwork makes most of the old SMT demons look great with vibrant new colors and dynamic poses. Here’s a look at some of the other demon/persona artwork you can expect in P5X:
Persona 5: The Phantom X will launch for mobile devices.
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