Persona 5 Royal – Every Palace Ranked

After 80 hours of Phantom Thieving, I’ve finally finished Persona 5 Royal! It’s a phenomenal game across the board (and would probably now make my top 5 games of all time!), and it improves upon its predecessor in every way.

One of the biggest improvements since Persona 4 Golden, I think, is the dungeons (or “Palaces”, as they’re known here). They actually had a traversable layout that was fun to explore, rather than the straight-line grinds of before.

Even though every single dungeon was fun in its own way, I certainly had my favourites. How would I rank them all?

Before we begin, you can check out some of my related blog posts below:

OK

10 – Okumura’s Spaceport

Let’s just make one thing very clear – none of P5R’s Palaces were bad. Objectively speaking, they all had fun designs and battles that kept me engaged throughout. Unfortunately, Okumara’s Spaceport is easily the worst.

The soundtrack gets repetitive after a while, the puzzles are tedious, the plot reaches a real low-point, and it ends with one of the worst boss fights I’ve ever played. It was an enjoyable experience on the whole, but when I stop to think about it I realise that this Palace has an overwhelming number of flaws.

9 – Qliphoth

I was surprised to find out that “Qliphoth” was even considered a Palace at all – it’s just a straight line to the boss, and not a particularly good one.

The mini-bosses along the way are good fun, and the general apocalyptic setting is fascinating, but it’s quite boring on the whole. Considering this was the lead-up to a battle against Yaldabaoth, a literal god, I expected more.

Good

8 – Mementos Depths / Prison Of Regression

After spending so long grinding in Mementos, it was great to finally see what was hiding in its depths.

The Prison Of Regression is a really fun area to explore, and a lot of plot points start to make sense. The puzzles are a bit weird, however, and the location isn’t as visually stunning as I’d hoped, so I can’t rank it too high.

7 – Kaneshiro’s Bank

P5R was in full flow by its third Palace, but I couldn’t help but feel that Kaneshiro’s Bank was a slight step down.

The industrial bank setting isn’t my favourite, and the pin code gimmick in the vault section got very tedious very quickly.

Great

6 – Shido’s Cruise Ship

Shido was a villain that had great build-up across the entirety of P5R, so it was immensely satisfying taking him down on his own Cruise Ship.

The different mini-bosses and locations were great, the Akechi boss came out of nowhere, and I actually didn’t mind the mice puzzles … at first.

5 – Kamoshida’s Castle

The first Palace in the game, and you can tell the developers went all out in making Kamoshida’s Castle a memorable experience.

It has some of the best platforming and traversal across the entire game, and the plot leading up to the Kamoshida boss is incredibly strong. A fantastic opener for both new and returning Persona fans.

4 – Sae Niijima’s Casino

I had high expectations for Sae’s Casino – not only was it a setting that I loved (with a gorgeous soundtrack to boot), but it was the same Palace teased in the first few minutes of the game.

Exploring the casino was a blast, and the various gambling machines you had to rig was a nice metaphor for how Sae saw the world. It dragged in places, but overall it was excellent.

Amazing

3 – Futaba’s Tomb

I felt the story was dipping a little bit during Kaneshiro’s Arc, so it was a breath of fresh air when Futaba asked the Phantom Thieves to change her own heart.

Exploring her tomb was a dream come true, and the ancient mysteries and light puzzles were handled really well. If the final boss had been stronger, I would’ve liked Futaba’s Tomb even more.

2 – Madarame’s Museum

Kamoshida’s Castle did a great job of introducing me to the new style, but it was Madarame’s Museum that properly hooked me.

The thief + museum combo is a no-brainer, and the various traps and exhibits along the way couldn’t have been done much better. To cap it all off, Madarame himself was also one of my favourite bosses!

All-Time Great

1 – Maruki’s Lab

Just when I thought P5R’s story was coming to a natural conclusion, the developers suddenly threw an excellent Palace with even greater stakes into the mix.

The whole Maruki arc is probably the point where the plot peaks, and you can tell Atlus did everything in their power to make his Laboratory an experience like no other. All of the puzzles were fun, the visuals were stunning, and the final boss was a perfect way to cap off an extraordinary game.

Aaaand that’s my list! You can check out some of my latest blog posts below:

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