Hashino was the director behind Persona 3, 4 and 5, and speaking in an interview with J-Wave radio, spotted by Genki_JPN on Twitter, Hashino admitted that Persona 3 was the game that saved Atlus.
Atlus wasn’t doing nearly as well as it is now back in the early-mid 2000’s, with the state of things being so dire that Hashino was told Persona 3 would be the studio’s last game.
Hashino then took it as his goal to make Persona 3 the game that saved Atlus, changing the game from its previous iterations enough so that it could appeal to a wider audience, and hopefully save the studio.
He even had a difficult time convincing other members on the Persona team, who believed these changes would alienate the core fans. Hashino responded by pointing out that if they don’t make these changes, the studio could collapse, and then the games they all love making die along with it.
Now, Persona 3 is on the verge of getting a remake in the form of Persona 3 Reload, which is set to launch this coming February, though this time its success or failure won’t be the deciding factor on keeping Atlus’s lights on.
Source – [Genki_JPN on Twitter]