I think I'll always prefer the original as she fit better with the rather subdued nature of the voice cast in general. Also, she was a departure from the usual routine in anime and JRPG voice casting that I found really refreshing. It's part of what drew me to her character so much that I'm still using Chie avatars everywhere four years later.
That said, the new Chie ain't bad really, just different. She does tend to high-note herself more than necessary, but when speaking normally, she's really quite good. It's been interesting to hear the differences in her line reads, too. Some are an improvement, others notsomuch. I do like her here better than I did in Arena because as I expected, there's more room for range here than there ever could be in a fighting game.
I'd say it's a wash. In the end, we got a good chunk of new voiced content that we wouldn't have had if they didn't recast her, and it's now possible to segue back and forth from this to Arena and the anime dub without getting whiplash from the casting changes. But I'll always have that part of me that misses the original.
Off-topic: I like the new Teddie more than the original.
I don't know, I'm at a crossroads. It's an RPG, so there's supposed to be a lot of characters, and Persona has good characters, but I've always hated in an RPG how the whole cast is standing there, then as soon as a battle occurs, all but 3 or 4 people disappear into the ether.
Yeah, I know what you mean. I think it would be interesting if an RPG changed your party limit based on the mission you're on and adjusted the gameplay balance and narrative stuff like cutscenes accordingly. A lot of SRPGs do that already.
If P5 follows-up on P4A's story developments, then I doubt there's any choice but to go a little darker.
It's all in the execution, really. P2 was truly mature and if peppered with P4's charm, it's the best possible example of how I'd like P5 to feel, regardless of how old the characters are. I would vastly prefer another run in that style over P3's occasional descent into frustrating emo wankery.
I'd prefer a 5-man team in the P2 style (i.e. gridless; let P1's mechanics stay in the 90s where they belong) but with a support character a la P3/P4. Mix it up a little by giving us a choice of supports, or even two supports serving different purposes. For instance, you could slot in Fuuka for dungeon mapping stuff, and Rise for battle analysis.
Regardless of how the exact mechanics turn out, ideally it shouldn't be a total reuse of either system. Keep it moving.