If you hadn’t heard, Persona 4 Golden is on Steam now, and not only is it bringing the series to PC, it’s also put the game on a device that can be easily modded, thus allowing modders to put together some scrapped content that still exists in the game’s files. Including the gay romance social link for Yosuke, which has existed in the game’s files, but never was accessible through the game as it existed on PlayStation 2 or PlayStation Vita.
The mod is still a work in progress, but it uses voice lines and dialogue that exist in the game’s files to make Yosuke a romanceable social link. This is notable for a few reasons, because not only is it adding another romance option to the game, but it’s also the sole gay romantic storyline in a series that has gone out of its way to not be inclusive when it comes to queerness in general.
Here’s a clip from the mod, which shows Yosuke’s confession dialogue, but given that the audio files used are repetitive, you can see that the entire modding process is far from complete.
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The Yosuke romance is a sore spot for some queer Persona fans, as not only is it one of the only times modern Persona appeared to me making steps toward inclusivity, but that it was ultimately removed from a game that already has questionable storylines that intersect with issues of sexuality and gender identity has felt like a nail in a particular coffin about how willing the series is to engage with these topics. Things haven’t improved for the series either, with Persona 5 doubling down on gay panic scenes for no reason beyond using them as an attempt at comic relief. Persona 5 Royal, the enhanced edition of the game that came out earlier this year in the west, did get some key changes to dialogue in its English localization, but even those weren’t enough to make the game itself inclusive to gay men beyond not making them a predatory stereotype.
Now that the Persona series is making moves to PC, maybe Persona 5 Royal will find its way to Steam in the future and people can mod in a Ryuji romance, yeah? Maybe even an Akechi or Yusuke one, too? It would be an easy update, considering each of their stories are oozing with romantic tension between them and protagonist Joker, but they’re all a bunch of clueless buffoons. Maybe one day we’ll even see Persona 3 on Steam and can get an Akihiko romance, whether that be in just a straight port or a much-requested remake.
For more on Persona, check out our review podcast of Persona 5 Royal, as well as our plethora of guides on the 100+ hour RPG. Need some guidance on how to raise your Baton Pass rankings? We’ve got a guide for that. Want to know how best to rank up Ryuji’s confidant? We can help you with that, too.