UPDATE 27/04/2017 12.06am Atlus has confirmed to Eurogamer that everything up to 19th November in-game is available for streaming and the 90-minute limit has been lifted as well.
ORIGINAL STORY 26/04/2017 10.10pm Persona 5 publisher Atlus launched the acclaimed JRPG earlier this month with some unusually stringent guidelines on what could and could not be streamed. After a lot of backlash from fans, the game’s publisher has eased up on its restrictions.
Originally, Atlus said it wouldn’t allow people to stream sections of the game set after 7th July in-game. Given that the title spans the nine-month length of a Japanese school year, which begins in April, this effectively meant that only the first third of the game would be available for viewers to watch.
Now Atlus has restructured its rules and is allowing people to stream all the way up until 19th November “when the main story gears up for the final act.” In other words, we went from one third of the game being streamable to its first eight ninths. That’s a massive difference.
The author of the original Atlus guidelines previously blamed the company’s “masters in Japan”, but it looks like those on the high rungs of the corporate ladder in the east have taken the criticism to heart.
“To our surprise, we then saw numerous reactive news articles go up, opinion videos post, and received many emails asking us to please change our Persona 5 streaming/video policy,” Atlus said in its new blog post on the matter. “We recognise that our fans are the reason why the game is the major worldwide success it is, and we continue to want them to be able to enjoy the game without fear of being spoiled.”
“However, we also heard your issues with the guidelines and have decided to revise them. Because we want to give players the most access to the game while respecting the original goal, we’re now asking players to refrain from streaming or posting video past the end of the in-game date of 11/19 – when the main story gears up for the final act.”
The publisher further clarified that the tone of the publisher’s previous message misrepresented its intention. To Atlus (or at least its “masters in Japan”), such rules were less about restrictions and copyright strikes than they were about setting up a proper etiquette for how not to spoil the story-driven adventure.
“We also want to apologise to those of you who saw the previous guidelines blog post as threatening,” Atlus said. “We want to be transparent about what we do, and the reason we released the guidelines was to give streamers the right information up front. It was never our intention to threaten people with copyright strikes, but we clearly chose the wrong tone for how to communicate this.”
It’s worth noting that while Atlus has adjusted how long into the game one can stream, its other guidelines weren’t commented on, so ostensibly Persona 5 streamers are still not technically supposed to provide Let’s Play videos that are more than 90 minutes long. [Editor’s note: Nevermind. See update above.]
We’ve reached out to Atlus to see if these restrictions have been loosened as well and will update as we hear back.