JRPG Catch-All

Eternal Sonata was crap. The plot fell apart half-way through and it never recovered. It was a shame since I liked the concept and the music and graphics were just beautiful.

I'm not sure what to do with JRPGs anymore. My pile is huge and I'm trying desperately to shift my focus from gaming to art. The hours required to finish an RPG are too many at this point in my life. I'm currently playing Phantasy IV. It's one of my favorite games of all time so I replay it occasionally. I was going through Disgaea but the grinding killed my interest. It seems like Final Fantasy XIII is going to be the one to get me back into the genre since I powered through Lost Odyssey.

Switchbreak wrote:

It's pretty easy to explain why I hate Eternal Sonata.

-youtube-

If you can watch that without pulling out your own eyeballs then you are a stronger person than I am.

Well, eyeballs still intact and actually quite happy (they didn't read the subtitles). However, I do have pencils shoved through my eardrums, so I guess it's a wash.

Good idea for a thread. There never seems to be enough interest to keep a thread alive for a lot of smaller RPGs, but something like this should get some good traffic. And, I didn't know about one or two of the ones in your list... (but I would add Hexyz Force, dated May 25 for the US)

Yeah, great idea with the list. It loets Noob JRPG lovers like me, know what is coming out and what to check out. I never have time to do it myself. Thanks!

AUs_TBirD wrote:
Switchbreak wrote:

It's pretty easy to explain why I hate Eternal Sonata.

-youtube-

If you can watch that without pulling out your own eyeballs then you are a stronger person than I am.

Well, eyeballs still intact and actually quite happy (they didn't read the subtitles). However, I do have pencils shoved through my eardrums, so I guess it's a wash.

The intro was terrible. I actually enjoyed the game until I got seriously bored with it. It was nice to look at and listen to, but that's about all it was.

What I find unfortunate is that I have a casual, passing interest in JRPGs but they are almost all released on systems I don't own, as in, Wii and Handhelds. (Just look at the list on the front page) I'm especially disappointed in the amount on the PS3. That being said, playing FFXIII and catching up on old ones I haven't played (Lost Odyssey, other PS2 FF's) pretty much scratches my itch for that stuff.

Dysplastic wrote:

What I find unfortunate is that I have a casual, passing interest in JRPGs but they are almost all released on systems I don't own, as in, Wii and Handhelds. (Just look at the list on the front page) I'm especially disappointed in the amount on the PS3. That being said, playing FFXIII and catching up on old ones I haven't played (Lost Odyssey, other PS2 FF's) pretty much scratches my itch for that stuff.

Well, considering how few rpgs in general were on the PS3 for the first couple of years, it kind of makes sense at this point for Japanese role playing games to be heavily favored on the PS3. Clearly the install base in Japan for the 360 is extremely small and while Lost Odyssey sold well enough for an rpg not named Final Fantasy, it was far from a blockbuster. Believe it or not, Lost Odyssey sold really well over here compared to Japan. Not to take this too far, but Final Fantasy games in Japan tend to outsell America. Lost Odyssey sold almost 5 times as many in America as compared to Japan. That's almost certainly because of install base for the 360 being huge here and not so much in Japan.

I'm totally blown away by how many rpgs are coming out for the PSP, however. Didn't see that coming.

Like you said, though, if your itch is being scratched, until something revolutionary comes along (*cough* Valkyria Chronicles), you're probably fine just playing what you have. And for god's sake, if you want a jrpg, get any of the Persona games for the PS2.

Dysplastic wrote:

What I find unfortunate is that I have a casual, passing interest in JRPGs but they are almost all released on systems I don't own, as in, Wii and Handhelds. (Just look at the list on the front page) I'm especially disappointed in the amount on the PS3. That being said, playing FFXIII and catching up on old ones I haven't played (Lost Odyssey, other PS2 FF's) pretty much scratches my itch for that stuff.

I haven't followed the discussion about Star Ocean: The Last Hope closely enough to know if the game was hated, or if it was just the localization, but the PS3 version of the game has the Japanese vocal track as an option. I can't say whether or not that's an improvement.

For the sake of comparison, here's the same scene in English:

And in Japanese:

It might just be the benefit of not knowing the language well, but the Japanese actors sound better to me.

ClockworkHouse wrote:

I haven't followed the discussion about Star Ocean: The Last Hope closely enough to know if the game was hated, or if it was just the localization, but the PS3 version of the game has the Japanese vocal track as an option. I can't say whether or not that's an improvement.

The overall storyline of the game is a decent romp through space, especially if you played SO1 and SO2(as several planets referenced in those games are present). The battle system is decent, a more arcadey take on combat than the Tales series has, and the graphical detail is incredible. For reference, the cutscenes above are in-engine.

Unfortunately, the voice work and the(lack of) facial animation kill the entire experience.

There's another game that needs to get added to the list:
Dragon Quest IX: Defenders of the Starry Sky for the DS

Not a remake, it's a new, full DQ game.

Ooooh, good point on the DQIX.

Edit: And props to Adam for finding two vids of the same scene with different vocal tracks. Star Ocean 4 is clearly better in Japanese. I'd argue it's not always the case, but 95% of the time it certainly is. Star Ocean 4 had some poor, poor English voice acting though.

garion333 wrote:

stuff

Actually, I own a PS3 and am dissapointed by how few of actual interest to me are on the PS3. Apart from Valkyria Chronicles, which is somewhere on my list, I haven't really seen anything that's jumped out at me as really interesting.

ClockworkHouse wrote:

I haven't followed the discussion about Star Ocean: The Last Hope closely enough to know if the game was hated, or if it was just the localization, but the PS3 version of the game has the Japanese vocal track as an option. I can't say whether or not that's an improvement.

I plugged over 30 hours into it before I couldn't take the hideousness of the localization and voicework anymore. It was bad enough that it was embarassing to be playing it when someone else was in the room, a situation that gets worse as the game goes on and you acquire more characters, who seem to have progressively worse and worse voicework.

Outside of a craptacular localization, the game itself was pretty good. The battle system was fresh, and I really liked the fact that each character has 100 challenges to meet in battle, which gives impetus to keep switching in and out, and try out various tactics. The plot was nonsense, but it's a JRPG - that's de rigeur, right?

Dysplastic wrote:
garion333 wrote:

stuff

Actually, I own a PS3 and am dissapointed by how few of actual interest to me are on the PS3. Apart from Valkyria Chronicles, which is somewhere on my list, I haven't really seen anything that's jumped out at me as really interesting.

You mean with the new stuff? As far as that goes, I think the most interesting stuff in development is clearly on the handhelds right now. When Atlus moves development to the PS3, however, I'll probably change my thinking on that.

As far as the rpgs already out on the PS3, I'd argue that Valkyria Chronicles is the only really interesting jrpg. Well, Demon's Souls trumps anything else on any other system this generation, but DS doesn't really fit this discussion.

One could argue that when taking a look at the catalog of the standard jrpgs on the system (ie. not Valkyria Chronicles), Final Fantasy VII and VIII trump the other offerings.

garion333 wrote:

I actually watched a bunch of vids on Resonance of Fate after mentioning it earlier. It's a tri-Ace game, so I'm a bit scared (see: Star Ocean TLH), but Famitsu gave it a 34/40, which gives me hope. Anyway, it's on the 360 and PS3 and is slated for the 16th of March (this is a new date, btw, most places had it listed as May 10).

Anyway, I'm liking the way it looks. It actually reminds me of Valkyria Chronicles where you have a mix of turn based and live action with guns. I like that. And since I'm a visual person...

Oooooh, that looks tasty. Helps that the team lead worked on Valkyrie Profile 2, FF:Tactics, and Vagrant Story.

Vector wrote:
garion333 wrote:

I actually watched a bunch of vids on Resonance of Fate after mentioning it earlier. It's a tri-Ace game, so I'm a bit scared (see: Star Ocean TLH), but Famitsu gave it a 34/40, which gives me hope. Anyway, it's on the 360 and PS3 and is slated for the 16th of March (this is a new date, btw, most places had it listed as May 10).

Anyway, I'm liking the way it looks. It actually reminds me of Valkyria Chronicles where you have a mix of turn based and live action with guns. I like that. And since I'm a visual person...

Oooooh, that looks tasty. Helps that the team lead worked on Valkyrie Profile 2, FF:Tactics, and Vagrant Story.

Agreed. This looks very nice, it's going near the top of my GameFly queue.

garion333 wrote:

As far as the rpgs already out on the PS3, I'd argue that Valkyria Chronicles is the only really interesting jrpg. Well, Demon's Souls trumps anything else on any other system this generation, but DS doesn't really fit this discussion.

Yeah.. if we're bringing up Demon's Souls then I'm going to add 3D Dot Heroes to the discussion too... May release, PS3, $40, day one purchase.

I'm going to have to hop onto my Japanese PSN account and download the Resonance of Fate demo. I knew that would come in handy for more than just one demo.

RoughneckGeek wrote:
garion333 wrote:

As far as the rpgs already out on the PS3, I'd argue that Valkyria Chronicles is the only really interesting jrpg. Well, Demon's Souls trumps anything else on any other system this generation, but DS doesn't really fit this discussion.

Yeah.. if we're bringing up Demon's Souls then I'm going to add 3D Dot Heroes to the discussion too... May release, PS3, $40, day one purchase.

I've heard a lot about this recently. I'll have to look up some more videos, but I loved the Natural Sword Enhancement trailer.

and here's the classic trailer, just to be complete:

I've added everything everyone has suggested, so the OP is up to date. I didn't add 3D Dot Heroes because it seems to be more of an action game than an RPG. It's a pretty clear homage to the early Zelda games, and I don't consider those to be RPGs.

I also added Tales of Graces for the Wii even though a US release date hasn't been announced. Wikipedia has an EU release date of Summer 2010, so we'll keep our fingers crossed that it'll be around then.

ClockworkHouse wrote:

I've added everything everyone has suggested, so the OP is up to date. I didn't add 3D Dot Heroes because it seems to be more of an action game than an RPG. It's a pretty clear homage to the early Zelda games, and I don't consider those to be RPGs.

I also added Tales of Graces for the Wii even though a US release date hasn't been announced. Wikipedia has an EU release date of Summer 2010, so we'll keep our fingers crossed that it'll be around then.

What about Yakuza 3? That's certainly a JRPG.

TheCounselor wrote:

What about Yakuza 3? That's certainly a JRPG.

I overlooked that one. It's in the list now.

Dysplastic wrote:

Actually, I own a PS3 and am dissapointed by how few of actual interest to me are on the PS3.

So many jRPG had a strong following on PS2 that it took awhile for publishers to see the monetary merit in switching to current gen. Atlus is leading the charge so far. NIS should be quickly behind them after their recent financial woes and pledging to focus on PS3 development.

We went through a similar drought during the PS to PS2 transition but it seemed of a lesser magnitude. Don't worry, before long now we'll have more RPGs than we can handle. It's gonna be great :).

ClockworkHouse wrote:
TheCounselor wrote:

What about Yakuza 3? That's certainly a JRPG.

I overlooked that one. It's in the list now.

Looks like the demo dropped on PSN yesterday. I'll be downloading that later today.

I just want to bookmark this thread. Even though I've never actually played a jRPG, they seem like the sort of game that I ought to like. So I'll be keeping an eye on the thread and see if something grabs me.

The EU/JP PS3 title Record of Agarest War (Agarest: Generations of War overseas) is getting a North American release on the 360 and PSN. I'm not sure about the PS3 edition, but the 360 version has mostly naked women on the cover and is being billed as the "Really Naughty Limited Edition." Classy.

The concept sounds interesting, however. It's an SRPG and apparently has some sort of generational system where you choose a bride at the end of the game to create your character for your next playthrough. Or something along those lines. Any of our European GWJers played it?

(I've edited this post so many times that I'm started to feel like Irongut.)

That cover is absurd.

RPG Fan did an import review of End of Eternity (aka Resonance of Fate). I think I'm fully on board. I think I may just skip FFXIII. I'm not terribly excited for FFXII anyway. FFXII killed any and all excitement I had for the series.

Anyway, I like what Mr. Clark is saying about RoF:

[size=11]Like Valkyria Chronicles, EoE is likely to be another unappreciated gem from the hedgehog-endorsing publisher, especially considering its release date. While in Japan EoE came out just in time for the late January FFXIII burnout, the March madness North American release is likely to ensure that the game is lost among the Final Fantasy / God of War kerfuffle.

I hope to be wrong about that, since it's a better game than FFXIII. Better graphics? Better music? Better story? No. But it's a better game.[/size]

And Jonman, just for you because of your clear love of Star Ocean TLH:

[size=11][RoF's] story is good enough to make you wonder if it was really developed by Tri-Ace.[/size]

Glee!

JRPGs as a classification is a misnomer. There are broad similarities between JRPGs in terms of thematic approach and presentation, but apart from that, each other is its own animal. Some of them are real-time or semi-real time. Some are turn-based. Some are board-centric with tiles. Some have battle grids. Some even have cards. They run the gamut from end to end.

Classifying Final Fantasy with Fragile is a little like classifying Mass Effect 2 with Bookworm Adventures because they're both done by Western developers.

The reason why many people like Final Fantasy isn't because they like "JRPGs." It's because they like Final Fantasy. They Specifically like Final Fantasy. Doesn't mean they'll like Arc the Lad or Chrono Trigger or Disgaea or Tales series.

For my part, I'm looking forward to Fragile on the Wii. It's classed "JRPG" by some, but it's really a third person exploration game with what looks to be real-time combat and flashlight exploration mechanics. I suspect it might have more similarities to Shattered Hill than it does to Chrono Trigger.

Also looking forward to Arc Rise Fantasia, Tales of Graces, Sakura Wars, and Shin Megami Tensei. I wouldn't call this year a banner year for JRPGs, but it has some promising titles. Hope Monado hits the stores this year, too.

I see The Last Rebellion got added to the list. It's been torn apart in every review/article.

ClockworkHouse wrote:

The EU/JP PS3 title Record of Agarest War (Agarest: Generations of War overseas) is getting a North American release on the 360 and PSN. I'm not sure about the PS3 edition, but the 360 version has mostly naked women on the cover and is being billed as the "Really Naughty Limited Edition." Classy.

The concept sounds interesting, however. It's an SRPG and apparently has some sort of generational system where you choose a bride at the end of the game to create your character for your next playthrough. Or something along those lines. Any of our European GWJers played it?

(I've edited this post so many times that I'm started to feel like Irongut.)

Hmmm....it actually does sound interesting. It also has "exclusive trophy and achievement support." I miss the days when we used to get trophies and achievements in games.

garion333 wrote:
[size=11]I hope to be wrong about that, since it's a better game than FFXIII. Better graphics? Better music? Better story? No. But it's a better game.[/size]

While this sounds cool, and I'll likely check it out during the lean summer months, this bit here sounds disingenuous as all get out, though that could just be because I like to take a gestalt view.

Looking forward to Infinite Space and SHT Strange Journey as well as a non-Victor Ireland translation of Lunar.