Atlus and streaming have had a long, and somewhat complex, history. The Persona series has had several rules that limited streamers in what they were able to do and show; Persona 5 notably declared that the series could only be shared through the PS4's share button, with Atlus infamously warning users they could face channel strikes if they broadcast gameplay after the in-game August events (Atlus would later soften the blow, apologizing for the harsh tone). Persona 5 Royal originally had a similar situation, however, Atlus soon came out and specified that streamers weren't allowed to show anything past the Christmas date, and thus the majority of the main content.
Now that Shin Megami Tensei V has been released, many streamers are worried about what they can show of the game on their channels. Atlus has clarified its guidelines for streaming SMTV, and while there are still some conditions they're much more forgiving than prior releases. In fact, compared to the Persona 5 controversy, Shin Megami Tensei V seems pretty safe to stream.
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There are three main points for streaming the game that needs to be taken into consideration. The first is that the streamer will need to include a spoiler warning to protect other players from potentially ruining the story for themselves. For the most part, this is perfectly sensible and should be something any streamer does while playing a new game. This is the only condition that isn't connected to the actual gameplay and is the easiest to accomplish.
The next condition relates to the ending of the game and the final movie. Atlus has stated that the final cutscene after the player enters the 'Temple of Eternity' up until the final credits can not be shown. This decision is intended to allow players to discover any potential twists that occur in the end on their own. However, it does mean that anyone who cannot play the game may never truly know how it ends.
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Perhaps the most challenging, though, is that streamers cannot show the analyze menu when dealing with bosses. This is one of the oddest limitations, but it does make a strange sort of sense. The analyze menu shows the weaknesses and strengths of enemies, allowing for options to strategize your playthrough. However, those won't change from playthrough to playthrough, so if you already know what you will be up against, the skill is moot and a lot of the challenge is gone. While this decision is strange, it is relatively easy to comply with and shouldn't limit the streamer too much -- although it could potentially make the game much harder for the streamer. Finally, Atlus has also made it clear that the game's music can not be uploaded or streamed independently.
Streaming has slowly become an integral part of gaming, and it's shown it can help increase interest and promote obscure titles and spin-offs. Thankfully, Atlus seems to be coming around to letting streamers play its games, as it has loosened the more stringent rules regarding streaming. The rules it has laid out are relatively easy to follow and should mean that prior controversies don't reoccur. This should allow for more players to enjoy Shin Megami Tensei V and, potentially, even play it themselves. While streamers did ignore prior rules and stream the Persona games, these new rules should allow them to do so without warnings of having their channels taken down.
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