With Atlus announcing that Persona 5 will come to the west in December, maybe some Persona fans might want to dust off their copies of Persona 4, or buy it digitally on PSN, and fall in love with the Persona series all over again. If you are a newcomer to these games and want to get your feet wet with all that Persona goodness and need some help with this game, that’s even better.
One of the most iconic and unique aspects of the Persona series is the idea of Social Links, the ability to gain power and abilities through interacting with people, learning more about them and helping them with their personal problems.
For those who wish to attempt a “Complete Social Link” run of Persona 4, here is a guide pointing out the more difficult or complicated social links to complete, what the Social Links unlock gameplay-wise and how good the “Ultimate Persona”, a persona that is unlocked once the Social Link is maxed out, of each arcana is. All of the social links or S.L's will also be separated into various categories Also fair warning, but this guide will have spoilers! So watch out!
With all those technicalities out of the way, let the Persona 4 Social Link Guide Extravaganza begin!
This first group, No-Stress, is what I would call the least difficult or complicated of the Social Links available. This category is reserved for the S.L's that progress as the story progresses, making them the easiest to complete as the player just has to proceed through the story.
Description: The Investigation Team Social Link progresses alongside the story. Basically, takes minimal effort as long as you continue the story. The Fool S.L is initiated once the “Investigation Team” is officially formed between the player, Chie and Yosuke. This S.L is only completed if the player achieves either the “Good” or “True” Ending.
Ultimate Persona: Loki. A Persona that is available via fusion once the player reaches level 64. Loki has the unique “severe” Ice attack known as Niflheim, otherwise Loki is a decent persona in the magic area.
Description: Starting from June 24th, the Star Social Link is automatically activated and powers up as the story progresses. This S.L is only able to be 100% completed if the player is able to get the Good or True Ending. When this S.L is maxed out the player gains an Ultimate Persona and Teddie's Persona transforms into Kamui.
Ultimate Persona: Helel. This Persona is unlocked at level 87 and has some of the strongest abilities and attacks. He has a unique attack called Morning Star which causes almighty damage to all enemies and multiple healing powers.
Description: The Judgement Social Link is automatically activated on December 3rd after making the right choices and gaining "The Good Ending". This S.L levels up as the game progresses until it maxes out and gives the player its Ultimate Persona right before fighting the final boss.
Ultimate Persona: Lucifer. This Persona is one of the best in the game. He has two abilities in particular that make him rather powerful. The first is Spell Master, which halves the cost for all magic. The second is Victory Cry which fully restores the player's health and magic after finishing a battle.
This group of Social Links are pretty easy to begin as the game repeatedly reminds the player about the various clubs (both Sports and Cultural) that the Player can join. The player will have to find the right rooms in the school in order to join those clubs, but otherwise the difficulty to beginning and progressing these S.L's is rather low.
This Social Link can be activated anytime after April 19th by joining a Sports Club, by exiting via the West Exit on the 1st floor of the School building. If the player joins the Soccer Club then the representative of the Strength S.L is Daisuke, while joining the Basketball Club gives the S.L to Kou.
Availability: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Saturday, Sunday and Holidays. During the holidays or Sunday Kou/Daisuke are normally found at the North Shopping District.
Attitude with Kou/Daisuke: Usually staying upbeat and positive gets the best reactions from Kou/Daisuke. Also being sympathetic with their problems never hurts either.
Ultimate Persona: Zaou-Gongen. This Persona is unlocked at level 90 and like the rest of the Strength Arcana has a lot of Physical attacks. Zaou-Gongen has powerful multi-target attacks like Vorpal Blade and even boasts a real handy ability called Enduring Soul which grants the player full health restoration after dying, however this can only occur once per battle.
Description: Similar to the Strength S.L, the Sun Social Link can be formed by joining either the Symphonic Band or the Drama Club. The player has the option of joining either one starting on April 25th. If the player chooses the Band then Ayane is the Sun S.L, while Yumi takes her place if Drama Club is chosen. During this S.L the Player can develop a "lovers relationship" with Yumi/Ayane.
Availability: Monday, Tuesday and Friday. Despite having so few days for furthering this Social Link, it is one of the few S.L's that can be chosen if it is raining.
Attitude with Yumi/Ayane: Unlike Daisuke and Kou, Ayane and Yumi are very different characters. Ayane is very soft-spoken and appreciates it when you stand up for her and assist her with her usually overwhelming jobs. Yumi is more independent and values a more bold approach however with personal matters she is a bit withdrawn and is prone to snap the player.
Ultimate Persona: Asura. This Persona is unlocked at level 86. Asura boasts fire, physical and light attacks so it is very versatile in battle. It also has the special ability called Unshakeable Will that protects the player from all status effects.
These Social Links are directly connected to the characters who fight alongside the player character. Majority of these S.L's are activated by story progression, but not all of them. These S.L's in particular are important because as they progress, your companions gain new abilities and powers.
Description: After April 16th the game will automatically activate the Magician Social Link. Once the S.L. reaches level 3, Yosuke learns a follow-up move known as “Yosuke Strike”. When you complete Yosuke’s S.L the player does not only receive an Ultimate Persona but Yosuke’s Persona also evolves as well into the mighty Susano-o.
Availability: Monday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and some Sundays. He is also usually at Junes during the holidays and on Sundays.
Attitude with Yosuke: When choosing your character’s responses during his Social Link, usually being a nice and supportive friend will get his appreciation.
Ultimate Persona: Mada. A Persona that uses mostly fire attacks and is unlocked at level 78. Mada is a decent persona in all aspects but one without any unique abilities.
Description: After April 18th the game will automatically activate the Chariot Social Link. Once the S.L. reaches level 3, Chie learns a follow-up move known as “Galactic Punt” which knocks a single enemy out of the battlefield. When you complete Chie’s S.L the player will receive an Ultimate Persona Persona and Chie's Persona will also evolve into Suzuka Gongen. While advancing this S.L the Player can develop a "lovers relationship" with Chie.
Availability: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, Some Sundays and Holidays. On Sundays and holidays Chie can be found in the South Shopping District.
Attitude with Chie: Chie appreciates it if the Player responds to her energy and enthusiasm with more of the same. She doesn't like to feel protected or coddled, preferring to deal with issues on her own terms. Laughing and keeping a positive attitude is almost always appreciated by Chie.
Ultimate Persona: Futsunushi. Like the rest of the Chariot Arcana, this Persona focuses mostly on dealing damage via Physical attacks. It does have multiple abilities that increase the Player and the party's stats but sometimes this comes at a cost.
Description: In order to activate Kanji's Social Link you have to speak to a girl on the 2nd Floor of the Learning Building, she will be there from June 9th onward. After talking to her, you should be able to find Kanji on the 1st Floor of the Practice Building. When the Emperor S.L reaches level 3 Kanji learns his own unique follow-up move: Atomic Press, which deals critical damage to all enemies. When Kanji's S.L is completely maxed out the player gains the ability to fuse Odin and Kanji's persona transforms into Rokuten Moah.
Availability: Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday. On holidays and Sundays Kanji is found in the Northern Shopping District.
Attitude with Kanji: Supporting Kanji and always being loyal to him is usually appreciated by Kanji. However sometimes it is better to be blunt and forward than subtle and caring, Kanji does prefer this type of attitude.
Ultimate Persona: Odin. As an Ultimate Persona, Odin is a very adaptable and powerful and is unlocked at level 74. He has a mixture of wind and lightning attacks, including the strongest wind attack known as Panta Rhei. He also has a Regen ability that gives the player health at the begging of their turn in battles.
Description: This social link is automatically activated on May 17th as the story progresses. When the 3rd level of the S.L is achieved, Yukiko gains her follow-up attack: Fan Assault. As the Player progresses through this S.L, they can develop a "lovers relationship" with Yukiko. Like all of the party members, once the player maxes out the Priestess S.L, Yukiko’s Persona transforms into Amaterasu and the player gains access to a new Ultimate Persona.
Availability: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and rarely on Sundays. During Holidays and Sundays she is found in the South Shopping District.
Attitude with Yukiko: Similar to Yosuke, being a decent and supportive friend usually gets a positive reaction from Yukiko.
Ultimate Persona: Scathach, which as Ultimate Persona’s go is rather good. This Persona has both wind attacks and the Amrita spell, which cures any status ailment other than being Ko’d or knocked down for the entire party.
Description: The Lovers Social Link is automatically activated on July 23rd. While advancing Rise's S.L the Player can develop a "lovers relationship" with her. Unlike the other members of your team, Rise is a support-only character, so she never learns a follow-up move. However as you get further in the Lovers S.L she learns new support abilities. These powers, such as Enemy Scan and Weakness Scan, can really come in handy while dungeon-crawling. Once the Lovers S.L is maxed out Rise's Persona does evolve into Kanzeon and additionally grants the Player the ability to fuse an Ultimate Persona.
Availability: Rise can usually be found in school on Friday and Saturday. She can be found in the South Shopping District on both Sundays and holidays.
Attitude with Rise: Rise is a rather deep and unique character who seems really energetic and ditzy on the surface, but is actually hiding serious insecurities and questions about her how identity. When interacting with her being playful is usually a good move, however when she is serious it is for the best to follow suit and seriously try to help her with her problems.
Ultimate Persona: Ishtar. This Persona is unlocked at level 71 and packs a real wallop as it has a very strong Magic stat and has multiple healing abilities for status ailments and health problems. Ishtar is a solid Persona that can really help the Player out during boss battles.
Description: Of all of the Social Links in the Teammate category, Naoto's is the most difficult to complete. This is due to the fact that it is made available in the later half of the game (starting on October 21st) and in order to even activate the Fortune S.L the Player must have maxed out their Courage and Knowledge social qualities. In order to activate Naoto's S.L the player must talk with a Mysterious Man, which requires maxed out Knowledge, outside Aiya in the North Shopping District. Then the player must go talk to Naoto at school, which requires maxed out Courage. Once the Fortune S.L gets to level 3 Naoto gains the Ultra Trigger attack, which allows her to attack all enemies with the possiblity of inflicting dizzy or down status. While advancing this S.L the Player can develop a "lovers relationship" with Naoto. As difficult as it is to achieve, once Naoto's S.L is maxed out, her Persona transforms into Yamato-Takeru. !!In order to Max out the Fortune S.L it is advised that the Player has a Fortune Arcana Persona with them, as it increases the possibility of advancing the S.L. !!
Availability: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday. During the holidays and on Sundays Naoto is usually found hanging out in the Samegawa Flood Plain.
Attitude with Naoto: Naoto appreciates a person who is intelligent and quick-witted, much like the detectives that Naoto idolizes. She also appreciates a friend who is loyal after living a life with few friends.
Ultimate Persona: Norn. Norn is unlocked at level 72 and has a multiple abilities that come in handy. It has the Invigorate 3 ability that boosts the Player's MP a little bit every turn and Debilitate, which severely weakens all of a single enemy's attributes.
The Family group Social Links are ones that can only be progressed during the evening with the two people that player is living with. These S.L's provide some deep connections with the Dojima family. Both S.L's require the player's stats to be rather high, so they can be troublesome.
Description: Nanako's Social Link automatically activates on May 3rd. Although the Justice S.L is able to be advanced most days there are some requirements for advancing specific parts of the S.L. In order to get to Rank 4 the Player must have a "Persuasive", Level 3, Expression. The Player must also max out their Expression, Level 5 or Enthralling, in order to get this S.L to level 5.
Availability: The Justice S.L is usually able to progress everyday when the Player goes home. However whenever Dojima is home the Player is unable to talk to Nanako.
Attitude with Nanako: Usually being protective and kind towards Nanako gets a positive reaction from her. Trying to empathize or help Nanako understand situations she is not used to.
Ultimate Persona: Sraosha. This Persona is unlocked at level 74 and has a lot of different attacks. Sroasha has Almighty, Light, Thunder and Physical attacks. He also has a unique ability called Angelic Grace which increases the Players evasion for any elemental attack except for Light, Dark and Almighty attacks.
Description: This Social Link is able to be activated by talking to Dojima at night at the Dojima's Residence any night after May 6th. Like Nanako, Dojima requires the Player to have rather high Expression scores in order to talk to them. In order to get the Hierophant S.L to Rank 2 the Player needs Level 2 or Eloquent Expression. For the Player to get the S.L to Rank 4 you will need Persuasive or Level 3 Expression. The last Expression requirement is a Level 4 or Touching Expression in order to get the S.L to Rank 5.
Availability: Dojima's appearance at the house is determined by how far the Player is in the current dungeon. If the Player has completed the current dungeon then Dojima is able to get his days off and the Player can spend time with him.
Attitude with Dojima: Dojima is not used to talking to teenagers so taking the initiative with conversations really helps Dojima become more comfortable with the Player. Dojima can sometimes be a strict parental figure, usually the best way is to negotiate and be logical when confronting Dojima.
Ultimate Persona: Kohryu. This Ultimate Persona is unlocked at level 76 after maxing out Dojima's S.L. Kohryu has a combination of high level lightning and healing powers. He also doesn't have any specific weaknesses.
These Social Links are the most complicated and at times, most arduous, of the S.L's in Persona 4. They require the player to fulfill a certain amount of quests or requests that the player can complete at their leisure. However these requests rise in difficulty as you complete them.
Description: The Empress Social Link is very different from majority of the Social Links in the game, with the exception of the Hermit. This S.L become available after May 19th, however there is a second requirement. The player must have a Knowledge ranking of 3, also known as Rank 3 or Expert. Once these two requirements are fulfilled the Empress S.L powers up every time the player completes one of Margaret’s Fusion Requests. These can be kind of tricky but I did find a website that gives fusion combinations that help with completing Margaret’s requests.
Availability: Once the two requirements are fulfilled Margaret is available every day in the Velvet Room, also fulfilling this request and advancing this S.L doesn’t take up time, allowing you to further other S.L’s at your convenience.
Ultimate Persona: Isis. Isis is unlocked at level 79 and is a Persona that has some serious healing abilities that make it a solid healing back up for boss battles.
Description: The Hermit Social Link is automatically activated May 5th. Like Margaret, this S.L is only increased by fulfilling the Fox's requests. These quests can be completed at the Player's leisure but they get very complicated and time-consuming, very quickly. I was able to find a walkthrough which helps specifically with the Fox Quests. Also once the Player has begun the Hermit S.L the Fox is able to go into the TV with the party and heal them. As the S.L progresses the price that the Fox requires in order to heal the party lowers in price.
Availability: After May 5th the Fox is available every day, no matter if it is raining or otherwise. Luckily accepting a new quest does not take up any time, so the Player can advance another S.L the same day. Reporting back to the Fox to complete a quest does take up time though.
Ultimate Persona: Ongyo-Ki. This Persona is unlocked at level 82 and has all-around solid stats. Most of its moves are all over the place and don't specialize in a specific area.
This second to last group of Social Links are directly connected to the Player taking certain jobs available on the Job Board in the Shopping District. While choosing to do these various jobs the player begins to develop S.L's. However these jobs do require the player to have a certain level of Understanding, Knowledge, Courage, Expression or Diligence in order to begin.
Description: After May 25th the Player has to apply for the Hospital job at the Job Board. This job requires Diligence to be at Level 3 or Strong Diligence. After working at the hospital twice the Player will be approached by Sayoko.
Availability: Wednesday, Thursday and Friday at night.
Attitude with Sayoko: Sayoko approves when the Player rejects her "advances". She also respects it when the Player is sarcastic or witty, however this doesn't apply when she is baring her soul to the Player.
Ultimate Persona: Beelzebub. This Persona is unlocked at level 81 and packs some serious firepower. Beelzebub has Fire, Ice, Dark and Physical attacks and its most powerful attack is Megidolan, a multi-target Almighty attack.
Description: This Social Link is activated when the Player is able to accept the Tutor Job from the Job Board. This can be anytime after May 25th and when the Player has maxed out their Understanding. One special part of this S.L is that after achieving Rank 8 of the Tower S.L, the next time you visit Shu, he will immediately send you home, don't be discouraged and revisit him in order to complete the S.L.
Availability: Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday at night. This S.L is also available during the evening during holidays and some Sundays.
Attitude with Shu: Usually being very logical and straightforward with Shu works the best as that is how he normally operates. Shu is rather set in his ways and a bit rebellious so sometimes most of his responses seem negative despite how he really feels.
Ultimate Persona: Shiva. This Ultimate Persona is unlocked at level 80 after maxing out the Tower S.L. Shiva is all about the offensive abilities, as well as having no weaknesses. Shiva has powerful Almighty, Lightning and Wind attacks including a unique move known as Pralaya which deals severe physical damage to all enemies and has a 50% chance of instant-kill. If all that wasn't enough Shiva also has some solid support abilities like Enduring Soul.
Description: The Temperance Social Link can be activated after the Player has accepted the daycare assistant job on the Job bulletin board. It becomes available on May 2nd. After going to the job twice the Player will meet Eri and activate the S.L.
Availability: Monday, Friday, Saturday and only if it is Sunny or Cloudy. Since this S.L is rather uncommon during the week, it would be advisable to have a Temperance Arcana Persona in your arsenal when going to the daycare.
Attitude with Eri: Eri is a bit out of her comfort zone when trying to deal with Yuuta, her new step-son. Usually answering with definite answers and not being on the fence can gain Eri's approval. Although sometimes she appreciates you being on the fence, but these moments are rare.
Ultimate Persona: Vishnu. Vishnu is unlocked at level 73 and has multiple elemental attacks as well as the Regen 3 and Angelic Grace abilities. Vishnu is not exactly balanced, but has enough support abilities to be a real powerful force to be reckoned with.
This set of Social Links have a variety of requirements in order to activate and progress. These specific requirements usually connect to furthering other S.L and having the Player to talk to these characters multiple times before activating their S.L. These S.L's are rather difficult to start but the rewards for completing them are pretty helpful.
Description: This Social Link is able to be activated after two scenarios. On June 8th the Player will experience a cutscene that introduces Naoki. After this cutscene Naoki can be found on the first floor of the school. After talking to him around 3-4 times the S.L will activate.
Availability: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursdays and some Sundays. On holidays and Sundays Naoki can be found in the Northern Shopping District near his family's Liquor Store.
Attitude with Naoki: Naoki is having a tough time with his family and their reputation around Inaba. Standing up for Naoki's family when you hear people gossiping about him and his family is always a good move. Also attempting to go for more esoteric answers may pay off.
Ultimate Persona: Attis. This Persona is unlocked at level 82. Attis attacks focus on fire and some dark elements as well as a lot of healing magic. He is decently balanced in both attack and defense.
Description: After achieving Rank 4 with the Devil S.L the Player will see a cutscene with Hisano at the hospital. From then on look for her at the Flood Plain riverbank on Sundays or holidays. Every time the Player talks to Hisano it advances her S.L. However in order to get to Rank 7 of the Death S.L you have to talk to Old Man Daidara at the weapon shop. After choosing the Talk command after achieving Rank 6 in the Death S.L you will recieve Husband's Letter which allows you to continue advancing Hisano's S.L.
Availability: Sundays or Holidays if it is not raining.
Attitude with Hisano: Usually just simply talking to Hisano, most of the options or choices evoke a positive response. She appreciates sympathy and kindness about her situation.
Ultimate Persona: Mahakala. This Persona is unlocked at level 78 and mostly focuses on fire and dark attacks. All around an average Persona, but not the best Ultimate Persona.
Description: After getting the Strength S.L to Rank 4 there will be a cutscene with Ai. After this cutscene Ai will be in the School Lobby. In order to activate her S.L the Player needs to be able to agree to skip class with her (This requires the Player's Courage to be at Level 3 or Courage Level). After agreeing to skipping class, Ai will ask you to do it the next day during lunch. While advancing this S.L the Player can develop a "lovers relationship" with Ai. During this S.L Ai will ask you to be "fake lovers" which you must agree to in order to continue her S.L. This doesn't lock you into a relationship until the option of being True Lovers occurs.
Availability: Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and some Sundays (if she calls you).
Attitude with Ai: Ai can be rather temperamental. A wrong choice of words can put her in reverse, or stopping the S.L from progressing. Usually not being too blunt, or truthful, is the best policy. Also don't refuse to ask either Daisuke or Kyo (depending on who the Strength S.L) what their type is.
Ultimate Persona: Sandalphon. This Ultimate Persona is unlocked at level 84. Sandalphon mostly has light attacks as well as healing spells. However it also has Agneystra, a powerful physical spell that inflicts "severe" damage on all enemies 1-3 times.
Hopefully this guide has helped you with any of your Social Link problems in Persona 4 whether you are a returning player or a newbie to the Persona series. If you have any further or specific questions or comments, please leave a comment below. As always for all your Persona and gaming guides, articles and news, stay tuned to GameSkinny.com.