Genre Mixing: What Makes it Work?

Most video games tend to fall somewhere in between genres, rather than belonging to one strict genre. However, sometimes games will combine two starkly contrasting genres, and that can create an experience which can be exciting but may also sometimes feel forced.

One example is the Persona series, which is part dungeon crawling RPG and part dating-sim style socialization, and ended up being wildly popular despite the unusual concept. What process do game creators need to go through to create a successful game that heavily mixes genres?

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