Perhaps you think this is strange - after all, Persona 5 was released back in 2017. However, the award for Persona 5 as the best game in 2020 indicates that it still hasn't lost its relevance - especially after the re-release of Persona 5 Royal this March.
Persona 5 Royal continues the tradition of its predecessor, not only as a great role-playing game - it offers new story chapters that fit well into the overall concept of the game. Yes, maybe for some, the re-release is just an opportunity to sell another 20 hours of game time to fans of the first edition. However, in the case of Persona 5 Royal, things are much more interesting.
The main thing in this game is a skillful combination of social simulation, when you live the life of a Japanese schoolboy, and dynamic role-playing battles, when you have to explore mysterious dungeons. Both of these aspects interact so well with each other that you begin to live this life as if "for real", making friends and growing up with your hero. The company of the so-called Phantom Kidnappers (the main characters) cooperate so successfully with each other that you feel like a member of a real gang.
Atlus is generally known for its way of releasing updated versions of its games, and in the case of Persona 5 Royal, it's not only additional content, but also additional mechanics and improvements to the gameplay itself. Recall that at one time the game was a PS4 exclusive and immediately after its release in spring 2020 was unanimously named "the best that Atlus has ever published in history." This assessment was deserved not only by the increase in game time, but also by the reworking of the game mechanics - for example, boss fights are now much more elaborated, and the dungeons are really interesting to study, since their device has been completely redone.
It is also interesting how the developers have added new development lines for each of the characters. For example, the story of Takuto Maruka, a school psychologist who helps the player to look at the ongoing plot more personally, revealing the inner trauma and psychological characteristics of the characters in the game. It is important that all such lines are "side", but they help you to look at the plot differently, making it more complete and varied.
One of the important aspects that the original game revealed was the relationship with the government and those who use power to oppress citizens. In the updated version of Royal, this is a truly large-scale conflict, which represents two points of view on a better world - thanks to this, the bosses do not look "flat", but have their own ideology. Therefore, no matter how "pompous" the last battle looks, it is based on human beliefs, and therefore does not seem stupid to the player.
Thus, despite the fact that the original Persona 5 was released back in 2017, the philosophy of this game continues to be relevant today. The developers of the updated version managed to very subtly convey what is interesting to the player and what the world of Royal is built around, first of all, it is its philosophy and emotionality. It is important that Atlus made the game more personal and inspiring, which is why it is so easy for it to hook you with its story. You start playing with a certain range of characters and, after over 100 hours of play, you find it difficult to say goodbye to them - which is why Persona 5 Royal is a truly impressive and emotional experience.