OK, let me just say while I love both games, I'm lean to P4 more than P3. You see, I like a game that's somewhat upbeat. If you can make a game that involves catching a serial killer upbeat, you get my respect. Persona 4 is that game. It has memorable characters, effective game mechanics, one badass soundtrack, and an incredible plot. You go to a small town and live with your uncle and cousin for a year while making friends at the local high school, all while exploring a dangerous world behind the TV screen
Now, let's compare it to Persona 3. Instead of finding a killer, you're saving the world, which is typical video game fare. You go to a boarding high school, hang out with people, and at night you explore a giant dangerous tower during a secret 25th hour. However, unlike Persona 4.....Persona 3 gets pretty grim. Suicidal imagery, lots and lots of deaths, not to mention the final boss is the representation of humanity's desire for death.....0_o. Like i said, Persona 3 is grim-dark as all get-out. I guess it's just me, but Persona 3 strikes an unnerving chord with me. I'm not going to spoil the ending, but said ending left me feeling pretty bummed. That doesn't change the fact that it's a good game, but it seems like the plot's mood never really gets out of the nihilistic are it squats around in. Persona 4, meanwhile, is a fairly cheerful game. Yeah, there's some downer moments, but they're outnumbered by the funny moments that range from a small chuckle to side-splitting and rolling in the aisles with laughter. Humor's a powerful thing, even more so than sadness. Some games, like Monkey Island, Portal, and Bulletstorm are best remembered by how many laughs they bring us, as well as their gameplay.