"Persona 4" Boss FAQ: Beat the Toughest Enemies

Updated on February 26, 2020
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Len is a writer who lives in Brooklyn, New York and has had a fascination with games and media that has lasted a lifetime.

Unlike many traditional roleplaying games, battles in Persona 4 are no cakewalk. Beating bosses in this game can be exceedingly difficult. That's why we made this visual boss FAQ for Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4. It will help players like yourself beat some of the more difficult bosses. Once you get past that annoying hurdle, you can get right back into social linking your heart out.

A Few Tips For All Bosses

Before you begin, here are a few good tips for all the bosses you will face in Persona 4. When using this guide, follow this advice for every single boss unless told otherwise. In this guide, assume all FAQs are for NORMAL MODE ONLY. Expert mode usually requires some power leveling and very carefully chosen persona choices.

  • Always Use Stat Buffs/Debuffs: Upping your party's attack, defense, and evasion while lowering your opponents is almost always a good idea. In addition to your own personas, most party members have at least one type of buff in their spell list so make good use of it. Rakunda on the enemy followed by Tarukaja/Power Charge on your team can make all the difference
  • Stay Close To Full Health: Many bosses have attacks that can do more than 70% of your party's HP in a single blow. Have a dedicated healer who can keep the entire party in peak physical condition.
  • Use Your Items: Magic restoration items in Persona 4 are rare, but it is better to use Snuff Souls and Somas rather than die over and over.
  • Defend When Enemies Power Up: Most Persona 4 bosses will give you plenty of warning while they're powering up their super attacks. Take that time to heal, buff, or use the defend command to keep yourself safe.
  • Max Out Party Member's Social Links: One of your top priorities should be reaching level 10 with your teammates on the social link track. Once you've reached the top, their persona will evolve and most party members will lose their elemental weaknesses.

Yeah, kinda do, Chie
Yeah, kinda do, Chie

First Boss Battles: Yosuke's Shadow, Chie's Shadow

Yosuke's Shadow Boss Fight

You would actually have to make an effort to lose this fight. He is weak to lightning. Your only persona has lightning magic. Cast lightning. Rinse, repeat. You'll be prompted to defend when he uses power charge so go ahead and do just that. Heal if your HP gets too low, but he'll be dead in less than 90 seconds.

Chie's Shadow Boss Fight

Almost as easy as the first one. Chie's Shadow casts ice spells so try to have a persona strong against it equipped. She's weak to wind, and wouldn't you know it? Yosuke is a wind user. Cast wind, beat it up. Occasionally the shadow will "gaze" at a player. That player should use guard immediately. Otherwise, no tricks involved.

Yukiko's Magical Castle Boss Fights: Avenger Knight, Yukiko's Shadow, Contrarian King

Avenger Knight

This is your first real challenge in Persona 4. Physical attacks do reduced damage to him and he has no magical weakness. He also does fairly good physical damage himself, so make sure your main character has a persona with high defense equipped (Slime is a good choice that can be found early in the game).

Have Yosuke boost your evasion, use a persona with rakunda to lower his defense, and use as much elemental magic as you can. Try and use either Yosuke or your main character to keep the party healthy.

Yukiko and her Prince
Yukiko and her Prince

Yukiko's Shadow

For many players, this is the first fight where they die. Yukiko's Shadow can be a very difficult boss fight early in Persona 4. As you might suspect, she absorbs all fire magic. Unfortunately, she has no weaknesses. Her HP is also very high, so this battle will be a real war of attrition.

Early in the battle, she will summon a "charming prince", adding an extra component to this battle. He will buff and heal the shadow, making him a real problem. Luckily, he is weak to ice. Have Chie cast Mabufu to knock him down and keep him out of the battle while keep pressure on the real boss. Use physical attacks on the prince while he's down.

She will start using a fire attack that hits all party members around 40% health. Things start to get dicey here. Chie is weak to fire and will die quickly if she does not either defend or have Red Wall cast on her. Try to use your main character to heal through this period, if you can. Yosuke and a protected Chie can deal the damage from here on out.

Persona 4: The Golden Update: This battle has had the difficulty reduced in the Vita version of Persona 4. Follow the basic strategy but worry less about grinding personas for this battle.

Contrarian King

The Contrarian King is a bonus boss found at the end of Yukiko's Castle and is no laughing matter. Many players try to face him right after beating the dungeon for the first time. These hardy adventurers usually have their entire party destroyed in one round when the Contrarian King uses his rampage skill. This physical attack hits all party members for up to 200 damage.

Players should be around level 20 before they head into this fight, with personas with high defense and agility. Try and up your party (or at least your main characters) defense and evasion during the battle.

The good news is, when he isn't using Rampage, he is not too difficult to heal through. Concentrate on using physical skills or ice magic and keep your party's HP topped off at all times.


Persona 4 Bathhouse Bosses: Daring Gigas, Shadow Kanji, Intolerant Officer

Daring Gigas

There's practically no need to write a guide to this Persona 4 boss fight. The Daring Gigas is a breath of fresh air after a series of rather challenging battles. He spends most of his time buffing up so your party is free to do the same, attack, heal, or defend against his coming fight.

He'll do heavy single-target damage when he does attack, though, so keep your main character in good health at all times, preferably with a resist physical persona and a buffed defense. A power charged attack will probably kill any character not guarding. Try using Dekaja to negate his stat bonuses and frustrate his plans.

Shadow Kanji makes things weird.
Shadow Kanji makes things weird.

Shadow Kanji

Your breather is over. Shadow Kanji is one of the most difficult boss fights in the early Persona 4 Dungeons. Shadow Kanji by himself is extremely powerful, but he is accompanied by two powerful minions. Your first order of business will be to kill the "Nice Guy" minion. Nice guy buffs and heals and is all-around bad news. The good news is regular physical attacks will make mincemeat out of him, so have your main character and Chie beat on him while Yukiko heals. Yosuke should attack or remove buffs on the enemy as the situation requires.

Once Nice Guy is down, kill his partner. Be sure to use only magical attacks or you'll be in trouble. Kill him fast, because you really need to concentrate on Kanji...

Kanji has massive HP and uses extremely strong physical attacks and lightning magic. Your main character will, ideally, be equipped with a persona with resist physical and/or a high defense. A lightning resistant persona will also be useful. Once you're facing him one on one, heal using Yukiko and items. If he uses power charge, have all characters defend ASAP or risk instant death. If your main character is low on health when he uses power charge, sacrifice Yukiko to heal him up to full or it might be game over.

Keep your health high and kill his companions fast to beat Shadow Kanji.

Intolerant Officer

The bonus boss of the bathhouse (say that three times fast), Intolerant Officer is a breeze compared to the Contrarian King. He is weak to electric, so bring Kanji along to make quick work of him. Just zap him over and over again for massive damage. Keep a persona with strong defense on to overcome his physical attack and you'll walk away from this fight unscathed.

More Persona 4 Boss Fight Strategies

Continue on for more strats and tips for boss fights in SMT: Persona 4

Part 1| 2 | 3 --->

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