So... I needs help! (Early hours of P4).

#1 Posted by MachoFantastico (4700 posts) -

I'm playing Persona 4, and I'm in need of some help/advice. Still only a few hours in, but already facing some issues with my lack of RPG skills. At the first dungeon in the game (save Yukiko) and have already learnt some tips such as not overusing persona skills because SP doesn't regenerate and a few other bits and bobs. But when I get the fourth level I've died twice. Now I know part of it is me simply not realising just how much damage some of these creatures can do, I think 'oh, my main dude will be safe so lets attack' and then died on the next turn because the creature goes and takes all my life. So, back to the start of the dungeon and all that again. If Persona 4 weren't actually a blast to play I'd have probably given up on it (those RPG traits and me have never got on well). Trouble is, losing all that time I've invested killing monsters isn't much fun, so I need some advice and tips on what I should be doing.

At the moment I have direct control of all, and I'm trying my best to follow the tips I know (such as use items to recover health instead of healing skills, use normal attacks as often as possible so I don't waste SP) yet I feel I'm missing something. There's that, and the fact that I keep thinking that when I reach level four I should use that item that would allow me to return to the entrance and stock up and then grind some more. Basically take my time with it, but I only have the one item (sure more could be bought). Heard the SP thing gets better later on, and I didn't combine any personas at the entrance of the dungeon because to be honest, the day provided no bonuses in doing so and nothing really looked that great (at least I was able to get what was available through the shuffle card thing anyway). Me and RPG's have a spotty history, and for the most part I'm loving Persona 4 but need some help to get around these issues, which aren't the games fault but my little knowledge of how to take these sorts of games on exactly.

Would appreciate the advice, already read the tips/advice article written on this site and it proved helpful. But I still feel I'm missing a trick.

Thanks.

#2 Posted by Berserker976 (362 posts) -

Might be a dumb question, but are you making sure to exploit the shadows' weaknesses? If you aren't doing that then that might explain the trouble you're having. SP conservation is important, but you gotta be hitting those weaknesses.

#3 Posted by Levius (1140 posts) -

Maybe watch the the endurance run of that section of the game and see what they do different, at the very least you will be able to figure out some elemental weaknesses.

#4 Posted by golguin (3932 posts) -

You also don't have to do the whole dungeon in a single shot. Use your SP skills to hit the elemental weakness of the shadow enemies and go up as many floors as you can. You can just leave when you run out of SP. Using HP draining skills and not going all out will result in the enemies staying alive longer and dealing more damage to you, which will result in wasted items.

#5 Posted by ImHungry (377 posts) -

I've found that the Persona series in general encourages you to use skills rather than conserve SP, especially at the start. Exploit weaknesses with your skills whenever possible and don't be afraid to get out of the dungeon and come back another day, you have quite a good amount of time, especially for Yukiko's dungeon. Goho-M's are cheap so don't worry about using one and going to buy more (from the item shop in Shopping District West) and if you're really concerned about saving money then you could just backtrack and walk out of the dungeon if you're only on level 4.

Basically, don't be afraid to use skills. As you get later on in the game you'll get stronger physical skills which let you conserve SP more but at the start, just go nuts.

#6 Posted by Petiew (1348 posts) -
@Berserker976 said:

Might be a dumb question, but are you making sure to exploit the shadows' weaknesses? If you aren't doing that then that might explain the trouble you're having. SP conservation is important, but you gotta be hitting those weaknesses.

This. The entire system is designed around hitting the shadows with their weakness, knocking them out of action and then finishing them off with an all out attack when they're all down.
Unlike Persona 3, you have to find the weaknesses yourself but it's still the best tactic for finishing fights easily.
You can buy 5 Tap sodas a week at a vending machine outside the Shiroku store in town, and 5 other sodas at a machine in the final screen of the shopping district. Tap restore 10SP and the others restore 5.
You can also try buying a couple Goho-M and exiting the dungeon and saving every floor or two to minimise progress loss from dying.
#7 Posted by Terramagi (1159 posts) -

You can get some SP items from the vending machines outside the general store. 5 per day, I think. That basically amounts to 50 SP. Only usable outside of combat, but useful at that early stage.

#8 Posted by Grillbar (1834 posts) -

without knowing that much about p4 id have to say everytime you meet a new enemy fire off a different kind of magic to find its weakness, just use the cheapest magic you got. and dont bother about finding dark or light magic weakness since its more rare. the game will remember them so you will always know. sp items are your best friend. and stay safe. melee everything for the enemy's that are not that tough.and so on

#9 Posted by TobbRobb (4653 posts) -

The tips about conserving SP is just want to max out all social links or something, spam away you have plenty of time! And remember to play safe if you aren't used to the system, heal>damage making sure you stay alive is more important when learning. That said, later on you will have to reprioritize since healing massive damage forever is kind of pointless if you cant get a hit in between.

#10 Posted by FLStyle (4707 posts) -

I don't recall having any issues in the Yukiko dungeon so I'm not sure what it is you're doing to get yourself killed. If you're having problems with a specific group of enemies then hit their weaknesses twice in a row to make them unable to do anything for a few turns.

#11 Posted by MachoFantastico (4700 posts) -

Thanks for the tips, some helpful advice already.

Yes I'm attacking their weaknesses, I think the issue I've been having is that I'm not appreciating how much damage they can actually do. Like I said, I'm deciding to attack instead of healing thinking that they wouldn't kill me with an attack but the end up doing so. Happy to hear that the Goho-M is pretty cheap though, so I think I'll get to level four of the dungeon and then come back, restock and start over. Interesting you say to spam skills, a common tip I've heard is to conserve as much SP until its needed but guess it might be related to another matter. Still figuring the mechanics of this game out.

Thanks again folks.

#12 Posted by BBAlpert (1475 posts) -

@TrueEnglishGent said:

Thanks for the tips, some helpful advice already.

Yes I'm attacking their weaknesses, I think the issue I've been having is that I'm not appreciating how much damage they can actually do. Like I said, I'm deciding to attack instead of healing thinking that they wouldn't kill me with an attack but the end up doing so. Happy to hear that the Goho-M is pretty cheap though, so I think I'll get to level four of the dungeon and then come back, restock and start over. Interesting you say to spam skills, a common tip I've heard is to conserve as much SP until its needed but guess it might be related to another matter. Still figuring the mechanics of this game out.

Thanks again folks.

I haven't played it myself, but from watching the ER, I was getting the feeling that the balance between spamming skills and saving SP until you need it is kind of unusual, but very important. I think it's kind of a matter of doing both at the same time. In other words, casting spells with every character, every turn, regardless of enemy, will result in you running out of SP real quick. On the other hand, if you can exploit an enemy's weakness and you don't, you'll draw the fights out far longer than they need to be and take lots of unnecessary hits.

I think the key difference in strategy between this system and a lot of other RPGs is that while "saving your mp" usually means not using any magic during normal encounters so you'll have enough for a later boss, "saving your sp" in P4 means using magic during normal encounters, but limiting magic attacks exclusively to exploiting weaknesses.

If that makes any sense. And again, I haven't played the game firsthand, I've only played vicariously through Vinny and Jeff, so your mileage may vary.

#13 Posted by Neurotic (632 posts) -

Don't worry about saving SP. It is impossible to complete Yukiko's dungeon in one go without a New Game + and you have plenty of time to do it. Also don't use normal attacks, if you're gonna use physicals, use skills like Chie's physicals and Yosuke's Bash/Sonic Punch which has an absurd critical hit rate in my experience.

If you're underestimating the enemies' strength then start using buffs. They're generally not necessary in this early part of the game but if you're having trouble, you might wanna fast track that learning curve. Buffs/debuffs are your best friend in SMT games. Chie has Tarukaja which raises your offence and your MC has Rakukaja (defence) on Izanagi and Yosuke has Sukukaja (evasion). Also, when your MC has a Persona with a debuff (-nda), cherish it and use it often.

#14 Posted by pyrodactyl (2043 posts) -

@TrueEnglishGent said:

Thanks for the tips, some helpful advice already.

Yes I'm attacking their weaknesses, I think the issue I've been having is that I'm not appreciating how much damage they can actually do. Like I said, I'm deciding to attack instead of healing thinking that they wouldn't kill me with an attack but the end up doing so. Happy to hear that the Goho-M is pretty cheap though, so I think I'll get to level four of the dungeon and then come back, restock and start over. Interesting you say to spam skills, a common tip I've heard is to conserve as much SP until its needed but guess it might be related to another matter. Still figuring the mechanics of this game out.

Thanks again folks.

try healing between fights.

If you know the ennemy weakness they shouldn't even have the time to hit you before they're dead.

Don't forget, you can bring them all down in the first turn, do an all out attack and it's over.

#15 Edited by imsh_pl (3295 posts) -

I'm gonna tell you my strategy: I just made sure my main has decent health all the time and concentrated on the enemies' weaknesses. I made sure to kill every enemy on the floor. Whenever my SP ran out I just called it a day. I usually managed to do 3 floors a day that way, maybe less on the higher levels. Don't push it, the game gives you lots of time to finish every dungeon. I'd say if you are able to finish every dungeon in 5 visits you are cool.

If you have to spend your whole turn on regenerating and healing, and your enemies just deal damage to you - escape.

If you're not dealing damage, have to heal often and cannot defeat at least one enemy even if all your party members attack him - escape.

If at the end of your turn there are enough enemies to potentially kill your main with their combined attacks - escape.

The game gives you plenty of time to finish a dungeon, beating the first 3 levels in one sitting is more than enough. If you're afraid to proceed to the next floor because you don't have that much SP, use the remaining SP on the lower level monsters to grind some xp.

Also always make sure to have at least one physical persona. They're crazy strong and do not use SP, incredibly useful for grinding.

#16 Posted by kerse (2114 posts) -

@Neurotic said:

Don't worry about saving SP. It is impossible to complete Yukiko's dungeon in one go without a New Game + and you have plenty of time to do it. Also don't use normal attacks, if you're gonna use physicals, use skills like Chie's physicals and Yosuke's Bash/Sonic Punch which has an absurd critical hit rate in my experience.

If you're underestimating the enemies' strength then start using buffs. They're generally not necessary in this early part of the game but if you're having trouble, you might wanna fast track that learning curve. Buffs/debuffs are your best friend in SMT games. Chie has Tarukaja which raises your offence and your MC has Rakukaja (defence) on Izanagi and Yosuke has Sukukaja (evasion). Also, when your MC has a Persona with a debuff (-nda), cherish it and use it often.

Yeah people who say to conserve SP are crazy, you don't have to do it in one day, as soon as you run out of sp just hop out of the dungeon. The game will get easier once you finish Yukiko's dungeon, just make sure in the boss battle you cure Fear ASAP, because it causes the boss to do an attack on that character that will likely kill them in one hit.

This edit will also create new pages on Giant Bomb for:

Beware, you are proposing to add brand new pages to the wiki along with your edits. Make sure this is what you intended. This will likely increase the time it takes for your changes to go live.

Comment and Save

Until you earn 1000 points all your submissions need to be vetted by other Giant Bomb users. This process takes no more than a few hours and we'll send you an email once approved.