Persona 4: Dancing All Night – Review
Follow Genre: Rhythm
Developer: Atlus
Publisher: NIS America
Platform: PS Vita, PS TV
Tested on: PS TV

Persona 4: Dancing All Night – Review

Site Score
Good: Songs, Authentic, Simple to learn
Bad: Very hard to master, Hard for non Persona fans to get into
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(2 votes)
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Rating: 9.5/10 (2 votes cast)

Persona 4 is undoubtedly one of the most beloved RPG titles in said genre, even with the sometimes limited distribution in Europe. Nonetheless, Persona 4 has had its fair share of attention as there have been remakes, updated editions and even a fighting game. If you thought the craze would be over, you’re quite mistaken as today we will present you with a dancing spin-off of Persona 4. Even though the overall appeal of the game was already catchy before it hit the stores, we secretly hope this fad doesn’t get out of hand. We wouldn’t really like to see a Persona 4 Cooking All Morning.

persona 4 dancing all night


Even though the fans of Persona 4 do not want to let the franchise rest, the ingame characters are finally picking up their lives after all the events of the original game. Rise Kujikawa has picked up her career in entertainment once again, and things are looking quite well for her. Yu Narukami, the protagonist of the original game, even shows an interest in what she is doing and wants to dedicate his life to dancing as well, which is odd to say the least. Nonetheless, as expected problems soon arise when another band goes missing.

Rumor has it that when one views the video of a deceased pop idol at midnight, the ones who watched it will be drawn to the underworld, never to be seen again. Yu and his compatriots do some research of their own and decide to put the rumor to the test. As expected, this rumor is no mere story and everyone gets dragged to the netherworld, where they are besieged by loads of demons. That being said, these demons can’t be beat in the conventional way, but you’ll have to make them fade away by showing your spoofy dance moves.

Whilst this may sound like the most cheesy plot ever, which almost feels like a musical version of ‘The Ring’, the story value is actually great. You’ll be treated to hours’ worth of story, which is presented in a visual novel format. Nonetheless, it’s clear that the story is mainly directed at hardcore Persona 4 fans, as there is a lack of background information for newcomers.

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Persona 4: Dancing All Night is split into two portions, namely the visual novel side and the dancing sequences. The visual novel part of the game is beautifully done, with detailed characters, great facial expressions that are shown when the situation calls for it, all accompanied by very vibrant colors on a well designed backdrop.

After seeing the characters in beautiful 2D animations, we were quite curious to see how the dancing sequences were handled. Simply put: great. The vibrant colors are extended into this portion of the game and even on the big screen (PS TV), the characters looked great and above all they remained true to their 2D selves. The flashiness of the dancing screen has a certain appeal, which makes everything, including the songs, even more catchy, but this can hamper the visibility of the commands you’ll have to input to complete the level. Nonetheless, everything looks great and authentic.


Pretty much the entire game, at least the story mode, is accompanied by superb voice acting. Even though only the English dub is available for this very long visual novel-ish dance game, the voices are exquisite. Voices are convincing without too much overacting, except for when the situation calls for it and on the background there’s either a subtle tune or a more ominous undertone, when things are getting serious again.

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Seeing dancing is the core of this game, it’s only natural that catchy tunes are needed to get you in a dancing mood. Of course, you will not need to dance yourself, but it’s always fun if you can move a bit to the beat as well. The music itself are usually remixes of existing songs from the Persona 4 franchise, which are often a hit or miss. Some songs are excellent, whilst others are a tad more bland than you’d expect. Throughout these songs the character that is dancing, and his/her partner during the ‘fever’ sequence, will keep shouting the same phrases over and over again. This is the only aspect that could have been improved with a tad more diversity.

Overall the amount of songs certainly suffices to keep things interesting, especially seeing all songs are from other Persona 4 titles. Nonetheless, many songs get used in several different formats, namely different remixes, reducing the actual number of ‘original’ songs. Despite this minor flaw, the remixes are done in a great way and some actually make the song they mix quite refreshing.


Persona 4: Dancing All Night is a mix between a visual novel (for those who are interested in the story mode) and a rhythm game. Depending on what you choose, you’ll either be digging through a meaty story that will keep you occupied for many hours to come, with a few occasional dance sequences, or you will immediately show off your dancing skills in the free play mode. Truth be told, it’s actually pretty much as simple as that.

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If you fancy a great story, you’ll definitely pick the story mode, in which you’ll be clicking through the many text windows one after another, sometimes getting the chance to choose between several different replies, when a situation arises. Depending on what you answer, you’ll get slightly different responses, but overall they won’t have any real big impact on the plot that is unfolding. After big chunks of story, you’ll have to dance as if your life depends on it, and well, actually it does.

Dancing follows pretty much the same formula as many other rhythm games, namely press the right button at the right time, in order to score and prevent the song from stopping. If you miss too much it’s game over and you’ll have to try the song again. During dances you’ll only use six buttons, namely the down, left and up ‘buttons’ of the D-Pad and the square, circle and x buttons. These buttons are aligned on screen, in the same way they are spread across your controller, making it easier to know which button you’ll have to press.

A few extra things are thrown into the mix, as sometimes you’ll have to press two buttons at the same time, keep a button pressed down until the note ends and last but not least, there is the fever mode, which is a circle that appears on your screen, which you’ll have to ‘hit’ before it reaches the edges of your playing field. This has to be done by flicking one of the sticks during that time, in order to save up fever. Fever mode can happen a minimum of one time during each song and it will also stand for how well you’ll perform and simply if you’ll pass the level or not.

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If you dive into the free mode, you’ll simply be able to dance all you like, unlocking songs as you go. Other than that, you can also unlock special boosts, costumes and so on to use in the free mode, adding a fun extra for those who love to collect items or funny outfits.

It’s clear that this entire game is a pretty big homage to the overall Persona 4 experience with the many extras you can unlock, ranging from simple character models, cutscene stills and so on. That being said, as this game is all about music, it’s great the developers decided to add a jukebox mode, in which you can simply select the songs you want to hear, add them to a list and enjoy the melodies from the Persona 4 universe.


Persona 4: Dancing All Night is one of those odd spin-off games that is actually great, if you’re a heavy Persona 4 fan. Of course, those who like cheesy, catchy and upbeat Japanese tracks will certainly have a lot of fun, especially if you look up some of the background information of Persona 4, nonetheless, let’s assume this game is pretty much for the Persona 4 fans out there. The story mode is quite massive for a handheld title and the dancing sequences are very amusing. Certainly a title to look into, especially to actually start using your PS Vita or PS TV. Perhaps we have to take back our statement of not wanting another spin-off of this beloved title in the Shin Megami Tensei universe.

persona 4 dancing all night

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Rating: 9.5/10 (2 votes cast)
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Persona 4: Dancing All Night - Review, 9.5 out of 10 based on 2 ratings

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