Needless to say, Jun had a terrible home life. But there was a shining beacon in this dark spot of his life: his friends. One day, Junko and Akinari went to a festival with Jun, but instead of spending time with him, they left him to play by himself. They did, however, buy him a mask from a popular TV show similar to our Power Rangers; he worse the Black Falcon's mask, who was the "leader" of the group. While he played by himself, another boy showed up with his brother. Having spent all of his money on the boy already, the brother chose to leave the boy there alone with Jun.
The two hit it off almost immediately, bonding over their similar masks. The boy, named Tatsuya wore the Red Eagle. The two played together for a while, until another boy came up, wearing the Yellow Owl mask. He had whined to his parents about them buying something, until his father hit him and he ran off, tripping quite literally into Jun's life. The boy's name was Eikichi, and he was considerably chubbier than he is when we first see him in-game. Their next addition was Lisa, who wore the Pink Swallow mask, an American girl that got teased for her un-Japanese appearance; promising not to make fun of her, Jun quickly accepted her into their growing group.
They played together all through that summer, always wearing the same masks, even calling themselves the Masquerade Friends.
One day, when they went to the shrine they played at, a new girl greeted them. She was considerably older, a teenager, while the rest of them were only seven or eight. They took to her immediately, letting her into their group. She talked a lot about dreams, and they all stated that if she joined them, they could make everything she wanted come true. In return, she taught them a chant called Persona, that was rumored to show them their future self. Later in life, each of them discovers that they have the ability to summon a manifestation of their inner selves, aptly called Persona, that have the ability to fight.
Through the coming weeks, they grew even more attached to her, Jun and Tatsuya specifically, while also becoming closer to each other. Sometime in that summer, Jun and Tatsuya met up outside of the group, each exchanging treasures with each other. Tatsuya received a lighter, engraved with a quote from The Little Prince, while Jun received a watch. Jun said that it was okay that he gave away his treasure, because, as he put it, if Tatsuya had it, it was like he himself still had it!
One night, Jun and Tatsuya went together to see the girl at her home. In the shadow, she said that she mistook them for twins. "Hey... do you guys know Doppelganger?" she said.
“The night is still, the streets are quiet,
In this house lived my Love;
She left the town long before,
Yet her house is still standing in the same place.
There I also see a man standing and staring into the heavens,
Wringing his hands in violent grief.
I shudder when I behold his face;
The moon reveals to me my own likeness.
You Doppelgänger, you pale companion!
Why do you mimic my lovesickness,
That tormented me at this place
For so many nights in the past?”
Even though they were different, she said, that was why they were drawn to each other, like a person and his shadow!
Sometime during that summer, Jun met Nyarlathotep, the Crawling Chaos. Nyarlathotep and another creature, Philemon, were the personifications of the collective unconscious. Nyarlathotep led poor souls to the underworld, while Philemon led the strong of heart. The two of them came up with a plan to see whether humans would be able to progress into perfect human beings. Nyarlathotep chose Jun as a sort of catalyst for their test, and began to appear as the perfect father for Jun, who was ashamed of the rumors that surrounded his true father.
The five of them played throughout that summer, until the girl showed up one day, telling them that she had to move away the very next day. Being the immature children that they were, they tried to lock her in the shrine, thinking that if they kept her there past the day she was supposed to leave, she wouldn’t ever be able to leave them. Tatsuya protested, so they locked him in there too.
When they came back the next day, the shrine had burned down. Tatsuya was okay, but they never found the girl’s corpse. Thinking that they’d killed her, the four of them hid their masks deep in the caves of Mt. Iwato and parted ways. Eikichi, Lisa, and Tatsuya all suppressed the memories they had of that summer, but Jun wallowed in misery. Nyarlathotep, seeing this as his chance, morphed Jun’s memories. He began to believe that it was he that protested when they tried to lock the girl in the shrine, and that Lisa, Eikichi, and Tatsuya had burned the shrine down. So he wanted revenge on them.
Sometime between that summer and the setting of the game, Jun’s real father died, crushed to death by the gears of the clock tower at Sevens.
After this happened, Nyarlathotep came up with a plan to ‘help’ Jun get his revenge. He made it so that Sumaru City was a place where rumors became reality and granted Jun the power to become the Joker. Jun began to spread the rumor that if you called your own cell-number (this takes place in 1999 in japan, where calling your own phone number didn’t come up with voicemail), the Joker would appear and grant your dreams. However, if you couldn’t tell him your dream or you didn’t have one, he would turn you into a shadow of your former self.
Jun was told that he was fulfilling a prophecy by becoming the Joker, in which he, while creating those Shadow people, collected the ‘essence’ of their dreams, which he would use to take Sumaru City to paradise. The prophecy was called In-Laquetti, and the physical copy of the prophecy, as told by Tatsuya Sudou (incidentally, the person who burned down the shrine that Tatsuya and the girl had been in), was written by Jun’s real father with the help of another teacher named Maya Okamura. Jun agreed to do it because he would be fulfilling people’s dreams, which had been his greatest wish, inspired by the girl, who had held that same wish before she ‘died.’
He also created a newer, more perverse version of the Masquerade Friends. The newer Masquerade was made up of King Leo (Tatsuya Sudou), Queen Aquarius (Junko Kurosu), Prince Taurus (Ginji Sasaki, a slightly pedophilic band producer who set his eyes on Lisa in the first few parts of the game), and Lady Scorpio (Anna Yoshizaka, a former track star in charge of getting the dreams of high-school students). They were based on Tatsuya Suou, Jun himself or the girl depending on the way you looked at it, Lisa Silverman, and Eikichi Mishina, respectively. The ‘titles’ that the newer Masquerade members had coordinated with the star signs of each of Jun’s childhood friends, with the exception of Junko Kurosu, who matched her son.
One day, Tatsuya, Lisa, and Eikichi met each other again by coincidence, and Lisa tried the calling the Joker with some of Eikichi’s friends. When they called Jun, he recognized all of them immediately, though they hadn’t recognized each other. He was poised to take his revenge finally, but when he realized that they didn’t remember him, he ran away, vowing to make them remember.
He continued to collect dream energy, towards raising Xibalba, which was the ship that would take them to the paradise named in the prophecy, while Tatsuya, Lisa, and Eikichi teamed up with a reporter named Maya Amano and her photographer Yukino Mayuzumi, in solving several bizarre cases involving rumors that had become reality and demons that had invaded the city. Tatsuya Sudou started a chain of terrorist attacks on various buildings throughout the city, the last of which was the Sky Museum. After they defeated Tatsuya Sudou, they learned that there was a rumor going around about them. It said that they were the terrorists: they ended up spreading a rumor stating that they were the good guys to combat that, but instead of negating the other rumor, it created doubles of themselves, shadows, that worked for the Masquerade.
Not knowing any of this, they tried to figure out what their connection to Jun was: shortly after the attack on the Sky Museum, Lisa and Eikichi revealed that they knew everything once they first heard the word Masquerade, but kept it hidden from everyone.
They went back to the mountains where they’d hidden their masks and retrieved each of them. Jun’s was gone when they got to his, probably stolen back when he first became the Joker. It was there, deep in the heart of Mt. Iwato, that they encountered the first of their shadows--Maya’s. They fought her after the real Maya showed up. After the battle, Maya revealed to them that she was the little girl that they thought they’d killed, and that she forgave them for locking her up. They had a tearful reunion, then realized that Jun was the Joker. They then traveled to Caracol, where Jun had been hiding out.
In the meantime, Jun had spread a rumor that Hitler was alive and had an army of Nazis. After they exited Mt. Iwato, Nazis invaded Sumaru City, and, as they reached the heart of Caracol to find Jun, Hitler was there, talking to him. Jun started to turn the city into the ship, Xibalba, and, while he was distracted momentarily by a brief flash of sanity, Hitler stole one of the skulls that had housed the energy that the Joker and his minions had gotten, and, having gotten what he wanted, took his minions and ran. The shadows of Tatsuya and co. took the rest of the skulls and followed Hitler. Maya told him that she was still alive, and, frightened and startled, he attacked them.
After the fight, Nyarlathotep appeared, still in the guise of his father (even Jun didn’t know his true identity), and took Jun’s persona away. Now that he actually believed them about Maya being alive, he realized how big of a mistake he’d made, and vowed to help them defeat his father. Yukino, whose love had been killed back before they got to Caracol, decided to give Jun her persona and quit the group.
The five of them traveled to the four shrines that had materialized in Sumaru--now Xibalba--where they knew the shadows of themselves were hiding with the skulls. The shadows, before they battled their counterparts, each revealed several secrets about their counterparts.
Lisa had tried drugs, used pretty much everyone she was friends with for attention, including Tatsuya, who she’d claimed previously to be in love with (though she said later that though that she’d originally gone after him for attention, her feelings were now ‘pure’), and whored herself out to older men for money (this may or may not have included Ginji Sasaki). Tatsuya was an apathetic person who had no idea what to do with himself, and his shadow self accused him of hating Jun, though depending on what the player chose, this may or may not have been true. Eikichi, who had, as a child, been incredibly obese, was now a complete narcissist who would only date his girlfriend because she was thin. Only Jun, who didn’t have a shadow self, was spared the embarrassment of having everyone know his secrets.
They then, having retrieved the skulls from their shadow selves, made their way to the ‘core’ of Xibalba. They went through several flashbacks, each indicating several of the character’s father complexes. As they go through the dungeon, Maya noticed that whatever they thought was becoming reality. Eikichi made the mistake of thinking of his father, and a ‘metal’ version of his father appeared and attacked them.
Another flashback revealed almost everything that Jun had been lying about in regards to his home life, and yet again a metal version of a parent showed up--this time his mother, who he hated almost more than he hated his true father, because she’d ignored him almost completely for a string of younger boyfriends after his real father died. Presumably, he ran away from home and lived with Nyarlathotep-slash-his-fake-father after realizing that getting into trouble and having to change schools constantly wasn’t going to gain any attention or sympathy from her.
It was after they fought her that Jun remembered everything--he knew exactly who his ‘father’ was (it’s unsure whether he actually believed that Nyarlathotep was his father as a result of his twisted childhood memories). They reached the center of Xibalba to find Maya Okamura, the teacher that had written In-Laquetti with Jun’s father and Tatsuya Sudou. Maya Okamura muttered something about Maiyans and unleashed the Bolontiku (aliens that had been described in the prophecy), who then attack Jun and co., looking for food. After the battle, Jun told them that the prophecy involved killing a Maiyan maiden--Maya Okamura had intended to die when she released the aliens, instead of merely going unconscious, as she had done.
They finally reached the true center of Xibalba, and Hitler was there to greet them. A battle ensued, though Hitler didn’t die when they defeated him. Instead, Nyarlathotep greeted them, welcoming them to what he called the ‘Collective Unconscious.’ He told them that the entire prophecy was a lie, and that they were fools for believing that anything would take them to paradise. He called everyone out on their father complexes and transformed into the ‘Great Father’, a kind of conglomeration of all of their fathers, and attacked them in one final battle.
Afterwards, Philemon appeared next to Nyarlathotep and they revealed everything. Philemon congratulated them, because he believed that through their trials they had begun ‘perfect people’, and expressed the wish that more people would turn out like them, so that perhaps humanity could really achieve a “truly divine existence.” While they were talking, Maya Okamura appeared and stabbed Maya with the Spear of Longinus, in a last ditch attempt to fulfill the prophecy. They attempted to heal her, though because it was the Spear of Longinus and not a random spear, the blood wouldn’t stop flowing. Nyarlathotep then destroyed the rest of the earth, with the exception of Xibalba, which remained floating above the dead planet. He then disappeared, taking Maya Okamura with him.
As Maya lay dying, she told them all to “forget her quickly”. Philemon offered them one chance--if they’d never met each other when they were children, none of it would have happened, and they would have been able to go on with their lives in peace. At first they said no, because most of them had only been able to find peace with each other, rather than with anyone outside their group, but after realizing that it was the best thing they could do, they relented. That’s the end of the game, though eventually Tatsuya realizes that they made the wrong choice, but that’s at the very end of the next game. This exact point, at the end of the first game, is where I’m taking Jun from.