Persona 5 Royal, the latest game in the Persona series, will censor multiple scenes that feature two gay men. Twitter and Reddit users have criticized Japanese video game developer Atlus for censoring the Western version of Persona 5 Royal after ResetEra members complained that the game’s portrayal of two characters was problematic.
Atlus Communications Manager Ari Advincula told IGN that several scenes involving two gay characters who harass the character Ryuji at certain points in the game would be changed for the western version so that the gay characters are no longer shown in a “negative light”.
The original dialogue for the first scene shows the characters acting predatory manner towards Ryuji and Ryuji responding by calling them “monsters”. Fans have also responded to the censorship by saying that they are done with the Persona series and will not be purchasing Persona 5 Royal.
— Raging Golden Eagle (@RageGoldenEagle) February 17, 2020
Advincula added that the first scenes where Ruiji meets these characters and a beach scene involving these characters have been changed for the Western release.
In an interview with GameSpot, Sega/Atlus senior project manager Yu Namba confirms that the scene will be censored. When as if Namba had any control over what content makes it into the games, he responded that he did not have much control over what makes it in.
There were certain things in Persona 3, 4 and 5, especially now in 2020, where there would be a lot of talk about the things in those games. As a localization manager, I really cannot do too much about what has already made it into the game.
When pressed for specifics Namba revealed there was also a scene where two gay men take Ryuji and take him out for a night on the town.
Persona 5 Royal releases on March 31st, 2020 for PlayStation 4. Below is a video showing one of the removed scenes from the game.