Shin Megami Tensei III: Nocturne HD Remaster - Game Difficulty

A guide on all available game difficulty modes in Shin Megami Tensei III: Nocturne HD Remaster (SMT 3: Nocturne). Included are features of each difficulty setting, player recommendation, other important mechanics related to game difficulty and how to get the Full-fledged Demon and Experienced Demon trophies.

Shin Megami Tensei III: Nocturne HD Remaster - Game Difficulty

Game Difficulty

Shin Megami Tensei III: Nocturne HD Remaster - Game Difficulty

Shin Megami Tensei III: Nocturne HD Remaster (SMT 3: Nocturne) features a three difficulty modes to suit players of all skill levels. Two modes, Normal and Hard, are available at the start of the game. A third mode, Merciful, can only be accessed through a paid DLC.


Below are trophies and achievements associated with the game’s difficulty.

Trophy Trophy Name How to Obtain
PlayStation 4 - Bronze TrophyBronze Full-fledged Demon Clear the game on Normal mode.
PlayStation 4 - Silver TrophySilver Experienced Demon Clear the game on Hard mode.

Trophies and Achievements List

Difficulty Modes

Below are all available game modes in SMT 3: Nocturne, including each mode’s features and player recommendation.

Difficulty Features Recommendation
Merciful Mode*
  • Enemies take x2 damage.
  • Enemies deal x0.5 damage.
  • You receive x3 EXP in battle.
  • You receive x4 Macca in battle.
For players who wish to enjoy the game’s main story without having to worry about challenging encounters.
Normal Mode
  • Enemies take standard (x1) damage.
  • Enemies deal standard (x1) damage.
  • You receive the standard amount of EXP (x1) in battle.
  • You receive the standard amount of Macca (x1) in battle.
For players who want a fair bit of challenge and want to experience the game on its default difficulty.
Hard Mode  

  • Enemies deal x2 damage.
  • Enemies attack the party’s weak points more frequently.
  • Almost no chance to escape encounters (even with the Fast Retreat skill)
  • Enemy ambush and back attack instances trigger more frequently.
  • You receive x3 damage from traps and Poison status.
  • Junk Shop items cost 3x their normal prices
For veteran players looking for a serious challenge by having a number of combat and non-combat features adjusted to their disadvantage.

*Only available through purchase of the “Merciful Difficulty” Free DLC.

Which difficulty mode should I choose?

When playing SMT 3: Nocturne for the first time, it is recommended to play on Normal mode to get the hang of the game’s basic mechanics. Random enemy encounters and boss fights will still be challenging enough for you to learn and devise keen strategies and party formations. After beating the game on Normal, you can then try out Hard mode on either a new save file or on New Game Plus.

You can change the game difficulty at any time during play.

If you are stuck on a certain encounter or section in the game, you can simply lower the difficulty in the Config menu. This is especially useful when you have purchased the Merciful Difficulty DLC, allowing you to easily farm enemies for EXP and Macca to progress faster. Bosses will also be significantly weaker in this setting so will have an easier time defeating them if you cannot do so on higher difficulties.

Permanent Events

Are there rewards for clearing the game on Hard mode?

There are no rewards for clearing the main story on Hard mode other than unlocking the Experience Demon trophy (silver). Choose Hard difficulty if you are looking for a challenge and the satisfaction of having beaten the game with a number of restrictions and disadvantages active in and out of combat.

Other Strategy Guides

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Getting Started

▼All Beginner Guides
Game Editions Game Difficulty
Game Controls Permanent Events
Differences in the Remaster Differences with Persona
Beginner's Guide Battle System
Demonic Compendium Magatama Guide
Stats Guide Attributes Guide
Skill Types Status Effects
Post-Game Unlockables New Game Plus (NG+)

Location Guides

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Shin Megami Tensei III: Nocturne HD Remaster Recommended Article List

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Top Guides

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Reason Endings True Demon Ending Trophies

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