Persona 5 Royal has a massive cast with 10 Phantom Thieves who are the main characters, 13 more crucial side characters, and a whole lot of villains. As such, some of the other characters who don’t fall into these groups are on the underrated side. There aren’t many, but the most impressive and impactful of the group has to be Shiho. You can find out all about this underrated and arguably underused character in this Shiho Persona 5 guide.
Shiho is a major part of Ann Takamki’s backstory and storyline going into Persona 5. As two best friends, their relationship is at the crux of the beginning of the main plot of the JRPG. Shiho is essentially involved in what I consider the best entire part of the main story in Persona 5, excluding what happens in the Royal content. It is a shame then that she is only relevant for so long in the story, besides what happens in Ann’s Confidant plot. Here’s what you need to know about her in this Shiho Persona 5 guide.
Bottom Line Up Front
Shiho is a second-year student at Shujin Academy, the same school the main character, Joker, and his friends attend. Ann, otherwise known as Panther and one of the core Phantom Thieves members, is Shiho’s best friend and the two enjoy playing together on the volleyball team.
However, because of this, Shiho and Ann are targeted by the abusive volleyball coach, Kamoshida, the first villain in Persona 5’s main story. For the most part, Shiho mainly plays a role during this plot and a little bit later on in Ann’s Confidant storyline.
There are characters who dominate the Persona 5 cast like Goro Akechi and Morgana that everyone knows. But then there are lesser characters, not a Confidant for you to build a relationship with, and someone who isn’t a villain in a Palace to take down. These types of people are few and far between in this game.
That makes it harder for someone who falls into that category, like Shiho, to stand out. But among the few that aren’t in the core cast of Persona 5, Shiho is the very best there is. She is arguably a character who should have been much more present in the story than she is.
I would even say there is more they could have done with her in the follow-up to her part in the plot to make her a more prominent part. I’m not saying she had to be a member of the Phantom Thieves or a romantic partner; in fact, I don’t think that makes sense either way.
However, what I do think is that Shiho would’ve made perfect sense as a non-romance Confidant for perhaps a female protagonist version. This is something that Atlus should have tried again with Persona 5 Royal, but, alas, it didn’t occur. Because of that, here’s all we know and have for the underrated Shiho Persona 5 character.
Shiho Suzui is a typical high school girl at Shujin Academy. This means that in her few appearances, she is wearing the standard Shujin Academy plaid skirt and a white long-sleeve shirt. She sometimes ties her long brown hair into a long ponytail and looks like a sports athlete.
Later in Persona 5, if you hang out with Ann and complete her social link, you see Shiho wearing slightly different clothes. She will be wearing a long black winter jacket and a scarf that goes around her neck. She will also cover up any blemishes and injuries from her time playing sports at school.
Key Moments in Persona 5
Shiho is mainly present during the first arc of Persona 5, which is the best one there is. In fact, the events that happen with her are what set this arc apart from the relatively traditional and unsurprising storylines that come later down the road. In addition, she is a significant part of Ann’s Confidant ranks, too.
If you don’t want to be spoiled on some of the best twists and most disturbing parts of the Persona 5 storyline, turn away now and go play the first dungeon of the massive JRPG, and then come back. Otherwise, carry on, but I have to put a trigger warning as going over Shiho’s story will deal with some very heavy themes that can’t be avoided. This is your firm warning if you’re bothered by absolutely horrific events.
Being Kamoshida’s Target
At the start of Persona 5, we see that Shiho is best friends with Ann, and both are members of the volleyball team at Shujin Academy. Neither one is quite happy with their circumstances due to their horrible mistreatment at school by the coach of the team, Kamoshida.
While most of the story is from the perspective of Ann’s side, we see glimpses of what Shiho is going through during this as well. She is a quieter and less resilient or strong girl as Ann is. As such, whenever Ann begins to become her true self and rejects all of the offers from Kamoshida and his abuse, things change for Shiho.
Ann is no longer the target of Kamoshida’s harassment and worse criminal actions, but Shiho is. Kamoshida does this to spite Ann and force her to be with him. But since Ann rejects him and wishes to expose him for the vile person he is, Kamoshida continues to target Shiho.
From what we know, this means that he likely does all of the same things he did with Ann. He probably picks up Shiho in his car, forces her to go out to eat and on dates with him, and likely verbally and physically abuses her whenever she doesn’t do what he wants her to do. Essentially, he makes Shiho’s life a horrifying living hell for most of Persona 5’s first arc.
This culminates in the Phantom Thieves preparing to steal the heart of Kamoshida and finish him off for good. However, this is his breaking point and the moment in which he takes out all of his frustration on Shiho. He finally tries one more time to get Ann to obey his commands, and she rejects him.
In retaliation, Kamoshida goes after Shiho, and the game very much implies that he does more than harass in this particular instance. It is believed that he assaults her, at the very least, and possibly more occurs in this final act of the first arc of the JRPG. It is one of the most heartbreaking and devastating twists in the Persona series.
But it doesn’t stop there. It isn’t known everything that goes on in Shiho’s mind after that disgusting event occurs, but it pushes her to end up jumping off of the school rooftop and trying to kill herself. Thankfully, the attempt isn’t successful, and she is able to spend time recovering in the hospital.
Whenever she gets out of the hospital, she is able to transfer schools and avoid the bullies from Shujin, even though Kamoshida is already gone. You don’t get much follow-up with Shiho’s storyline unless you complete Ann’s Confidant story, which I highly recommend.
You get to see what is essentially the epilogue of Shiho’s story and how she is now thriving at her new school and slowly but surely recovering from the horrifying events that happened to her. It ends on a positive note for what is possibly the worst event to happen to a character in the Persona series.
As you can see, this is why I wish it were more of a prominent element of the game. Having Shiho has a non-romantic Confidant or side character you spend more time with would have been a nice way to give her the closure and writing she deserves after those events. And it would make her feel less like a plot device above anything else.
Shiho Persona 5 Voice Actor
There are a couple of voice actors who had the unfortunate but powerful performances as Shiho. It honestly depends on which version of the game you play: the original Japanese version or the surprisingly excellent English dub, both of which are worth your time in the end.
If you go with the original Japanese voiceovers, you’ll hear Akemi Sato as the voice of Shiho during the course of the main story and Ann’s Confidant storyline. The 42-year-old voice actor is known in Japan for various iconic side roles in the past like this one, such as Anna Irving in Tales of Symphonia, Shiori Misaka in Kanon, and Nyotengu in Dead or Alive 6.
On the other hand, if you listen to the English voices in Persona 5, you’ll hear the voice of Shiho be Christine Marie Cabanos. You might know her from some of the best dubbing roles in anime and gaming history, including Madoka in Madoka Magica, Rinwell in Tales of Arise, and Sailor Saturn in the recent Sailor Moon Crystal remake.
There are only a few key relationships that Shiho has during her time in Persona 5 due to her infrequent appearances in the video game. That said, there is nothing like her relationship with her best friend, Ann Takamaki. They are as close as they come, two high school best friends who stick for one another through thick and thin.
To be clear, Ann makes some mistakes in their friendship, but I appreciate the realism that is displayed here. Friendship isn’t always happiness, a rainbow, and sunshine. Their friendship shows the darker side of relationships and how you eventually overcome these moments to get to the brighter future ahead.
Shiho’s second relationship is somewhat with the main character in Joker. Though they don’t talk much or see each other that often, and she isn’t one of the Confidants in the game, she plays a massive role at the beginning of his storyline. Joker is also active in seeing the recovery of Shiho during Ann’s Confidant story arc, arguably becoming friends in the process.
And, lastly, there is her relationship, if you can call it that, with Kamoshida. The volleyball coach is not just her coach but her abuser and the source of all her misery. He is the reason that she struggles with things and ends up on the path in her storyline that she ends up on. But it is through this horrifying relationship that Shiho shows how strong of a person she is and the bright future she has ahead of her.
Question: Who voices Shiho in Persona 5?
Answer: Shiho is voiced by two different voice actors in Persona 5. The English voice actor is Christine Marie Cabanos, who you may know from Madoka Magica. The other is the Japanese voice of Shiho, who happens to be Akemi Sato.
Question: What did Kamoshida do to Ryuji?
Answer: This is a major spoiler alert for what happens during the first part of Persona 5’s main story. Before the story begins, Ryuji is taunted by Kamoshida and abused by him to the point where he retaliates, to which Kamoshida breaks Ryuji’s leg and ends his track career.
Question: What did Kamoshida do to Shiho?
Answer: This is a spoiler alert and trigger warning for anyone reading this. Kamoshida abuses Shiho in multiple ways and makes advances on her. This culminates in him seemingly sexually assaulting her (possibly more than that) and causing so much distress that she wishes to end her own life.
Find Out More About Shiho’s Best Friend
Shiho Suzui is one of the most underrated characters, not just in Persona 5 but in the series as a whole. She, by far, has one of the most horrific but human storylines out of anyone to date. The events that happen with her are almost brushed over too much, in my opinion, considering that it is some of the best story-telling that Atlus has ever done.
It is unfortunate that Shiho is largely brushed aside after the first arc in favor of other characters. But, at least you get to follow up with her and see how her story progresses by checking out checking out Ann’s Confidant storyline. If you want to see what truly happens with Shiho in the end, be sure to check out Ann’s entire storyline, and you’ll be able to experience the conclusion of Shiho’s sub-plot.
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