We continue with the hanging out with friend stuff, where… oh, all the friend events are over. What? I have to waste several weeks to actually progress to the next story beat??
I end up doing sidequests to pass the time until I eventually got sick of them. There are still weeks to go before the end of the game and there’s no option to just skip to plot-relevant days, so I passed time by going into the Mind Dungeon and leaving over and over. Fun. Love Persona 5.
I think my biggest problem with the friend stuff is… why is the gang even friends with Alex? Sure, he hears Vella and Rory out (which is just bare minimum stuff anyway) and Essentia’s with him because the game is gross, but why are the others friends with him? What has Alex done to show that he’s a friend in any way? Like, in the case of Proto-Michael, he’s chosen to stick by Alex’s side because he believes that if he doesn’t, Alex will go on to destroy the world, so in his case it’s more out of practicality than forming an actual bond.
Then again, according to stuff at the end, the Michael that Alex knew ditched him and to be honest, he had the right idea.
There’s nothing in the game that shows Alex to be quality friendship material. So, I got mad when the game started trying to justify his actions. The weird stuff happening in Alex’s reality implies that his behavior is a result of that weirdness and the Mind Dungeon really seems to lean on the trope of “not having a strong father figure to lead his morals.” Like no, you can’t fucking do that. That’s stupid. You can’t blame magic for Alex, YIIK.
In fact, trying to justify his behavior just downplays his supposed character arc of becoming a better person, because you’re essentially saying that he was never truly bad in the first place!! Like yeah, it’s somewhat set up with his monologues about how he’s suddenly become a jerk in the early chapters – but that doesn’t work because the game never shows us how he originally acted!! Much like how the cast keeps giving Alex the benefit of the doubt, the game expects us to take his words at face value!!
What actually has changed for Alex? Well, he’s suddenly keeping up with events going on around him and thinking about things past the worldly. To be honest, with the things he’s seen, I don’t really blame him. And he isn’t yelling at his friends for little reason, I guess? I guess you can say that Alex has changed if you put that as the bare minimum.
Anyway, the implications that Alex, in some way, is Claudio and Chondra’s missing brother is super cursed. I hope that it gets followed up on, because otherwise that’d just be a pretty cheap way to close out their arc.
And there better be time to close out their arc because the game is almost over! I spared a look at someone else’s video series on this game and the endgame starts immediately after where I left off! Things are getting weird and I hope there’s a pay-off??? I don’t know, to put your hopes in this game is foolish.