We’ve unfortunately started to see a decline in the quantity and dare I say, quality, of Japanese developed role-playing games (JRPGs) in this industry. At the same time, western developed RPGS (WRPGs) are increasing in quantity are one of the most popular genres of video games at the moment in my opinion. Some gamers are happy about this because they couldn’t care less about JRPGs but I do. It saddens me when a new JRPG comes out but will get thrown under the bus by bigger WRPGs like Elder Scrolls or Destiny.I’ve been wanting to put pen to paper, or fingers to keyboard in this case, on this topic for a long time. Mostly because friends and other gamers everywhere truly never understand why I feel negative towards WRPGS. I would never say that those games are bad in any way. They win game of the year awards and usually score high on reviews all around. But since I was a small child, JRPGs have always been a part of my life.
So let’s start by differentiating these two totally different genres of video games shall we?
- JRPGs ie: Final Fantasy, Kingdom Hearts, Ni No Kuni, Dragon Quest, Earthbound
- – More focused on story and characters in a linear fashion.
- characters are usually pre-set or chosen for you.
- Less focus on exploration.
- Set story, no choices or character configurations
- Usually shipped without glitches or game breaking bugs
- Unforgettable soundtracks
- Turn based combat for some
- WRPGs ie: Skyrim, The Witcher, Mass Effect, Fallout, Destiny, Diablo
- More focused on the journey as a whole, make your own story approach.
- Complete control over how your character looks and sounds.
- More focus on open world, exploration over story
- A lot of WRPGs have been shipping with bugs
- Skill based system, classes.
- Tons of side quests and NPCs to talk to.
- Usually not taken place in a colorful world. Lots of gray colors.
Now of course these differences are my opinions of the genres. The breaking points for me not liking WRPGs is not having a set character to play as. I really don’t like games that have you customize your character. It means that the character that I’m playing as is not going to have a set story or personality. When I play a game like Final Fantasy XIII, I know who I am and what my goal is! I can relate to the character and whoever is part of the story. When the story takes a backseat to exploration, that bugs me. I don’t find it appealing to hear that a game has 300 hours worth of stuff. Not only is it overwhelming, it’s also not fun for me.
I like when a game has a beginning and an ending. Nothing more, nothing less. Having too much content in a game can surely bog/water it down to the point that makes it all unnecessary. To each their own I always say. Want to run around a fantasy world doing pointless crap for 300+ hours? Be my guest. I’m looking for video games stories to make me feel something inside. That’s why I play these forms of art. This is why I’m going to be playing Final Fantasy XV and Kingdom Hearts 3 instead of Fallout 4 and the next Elder Scrolls game.
I rather a game be linear than have multiple paths. I know! That sounds crazyyy! But that’s just me. JRPG’s have everything that I love mixed in one special package. A cast of characters with different personalities, a big world but not exploration based, fun combat, and a beautiful story to boot.
JRPGs are tighter experiences that I can enjoy to play. There have been a couple of instances this past year where I actually tried to get into some WRPGs, but I immediately get turned off when I start playing. Tried Bloodborne, it being a PlayStation exclusive intrigued me, but it was just blahh for me. Same goes for Diablo 3 and Fallout 3. Nothing keeps me coming back to these games. I definitely understand the appeal for these big titles but I’ll just stick to my emo hair protagonists with all of their buttons, zippers and swords
If you didn’t like my article then GET OUT OF HERE! Just kidding! 🙂 Let us know in the comments why you disagree!
What are your favorite JRPGs or WRPGs
Have a good day guys!