Persona 3, released outside Japan as Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 3, is a 2006 role-playing video game developed by Atlus. It is the fourth main installment in the Persona series, which is part of the larger Megami Tensei franchise. It was originally released for the PlayStation 2 in Japan in 2006, and in North America in 2007. The game has recieved multiple iterations of enhanced re-releases and ports: Persona 3 FES, an extended version containing a new playable epilogue among other changes, was released in Japan in 2007 and worldwide the following year. An abridged PlayStation Portable version of the game, Persona 3 Portable, was released in Japan in 2009, North America in 2010, and Europe in 2011; this version was ported to the Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Windows, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S in 2023.
In Persona 3, the player takes the role of a high-school student who joins the "Specialized Extracurricular Execution Squad" (SEES), a group of students investigating a temporal anomaly known as the "Dark Hour". During the Dark Hour, members of SEES are able to enter Tartarus, a vast tower containing monstrous creatures known as Shadows. Members of SEES battle the Shadows with a physical manifestation of their psyche known as a Persona, which they summon by firing a gun-like object called an "Evoker" at their head. In addition to these role-playing game elements, Persona 3 includes elements of simulation games, as the game's protagonist progresses day by day through a school year and forms relationships that improve the strength of their Personas in battle.
The reception of Persona 3 was mainly positive; critics enjoyed its social elements, while some found its combat and environments repetitive. Persona 3 FES's epilogue was said to give narrative closure to the original game, although it was criticized for not featuring the simulation aspect of Persona 3. Two fighting games that continue the story of SEES, Persona 4 Arena and Persona 4 Arena Ultimax, were released in the early 2010s. Persona 3 has also seen other related media released, including a rhythm game, multiple soundtrack albums, musical concerts, radio dramas, a manga, an anime series, and an episodic animated film series.