The Great JRPG Showdown

JRPGs can give you so many hours of gaming joy from the sometimes wild stories they tell, such a variety of character personalities and some fantastic designs for characters or weapons that they live on long after you finish the game.  Pix from Shoot the Rookie and Winst0lf of Winst0lf Portal want to celebrate all things JRPG and find out our favourite 5 JRPGs.  Now officially I missed the deadline instead I did tweet my picks so they were counted, but I still wanted to do a post to celebrate and explain my choices so here we are.

In no particular order….

Final Fantasy XV

A group photo of characters in Final Fantasy 15, containing the main characters Noctis, Ignis, Gladio and Prompto as well as Cid, Cor, Talcott, Iris, Monica and Dustin. Everyone is smiling.

I played this because it was on Game Pass (at the time) and I had never played a Final Fantasy game.  I ended up loving it and trying to explore everywhere and do as much as I could depending on my level at the time.  It has a world that I just loved experiencing and so many lovely characters to meet on your journey and then the enemies who were not quite so nice.  I loved how each of the four main characters brought something different to the group and how they grow throughout the game.  Plus you get to fish!  I do love a relaxing fishing minigame when offered.    

Final Fantasy VII Remake

The silhouette of three characters, Tifa, Cloud and Aerith, are shown with a ghost enemy further back. The image has a blue tint to it.

Now I still haven’t played the original Final Fantasy VII so I have no comparison point yet.  However, having recently been playing the remake I fell in love with the characters, the world and the story.  It has been the game that I didn’t want to put down and yet also didn’t want it to end.  So far this is probably my favourite game played this year, for what that is worth.  I have also spent quite some time listening to the music discs and just listening to the music as I go about whatever quests as it is so good and perfectly matched to what you are doing.  I now can’t wait to see what the next part, whenever that comes, brings and how it can follow up.  By then maybe I will have played the original too!  

Ni No Kuni Wrath of the White Witch Remastered

Characters from Ni No Kuni Wrath of the  White Witch Remastered ride Tengri the dragon. Tengri is a purple dragon with white horns and a green collar. Oliver, Pea, Swaine, Esther and Marcassin have their heads and shoulders visible above Tengri's wing.

I was torn between this and Ni No Kuni 2 as I love both but this one edges it for me.  The beautiful Studio Ghibli inspired art style, the music and the characters draw you in and the story keeps you going.  I adore Oliver but my favourite character is Drippy the fairy who accompanies you as his humour and Welsh accent (when played in English) is fantastic.  I’ll admit the platinum, should you want to go for it, can be annoying due to rare item drops but the game is fantastic.  Plus you can fly a dragon so that also gives it cool points and is the best way to explore.  

Pokémon Blue/Red

This would have been my first introduction to RPGs generally so will have a special place in my heart for that reason.  It was my first Pokémon game, specifically Blue, and my first journey to be the best, the very best, and learning how to balance teams as I played.  I still choose my Pokémon team in a way that balances cuteness with useful abilities so I’m not the best at the actual tactical aspect but I enjoy myself.  Blue and Red introduced me to the world and over the years I have gone back to replay them and still remain in my favourite games and most special memories.

Yakuza 0

A screenshot showing the outlines of Nishki and Kiryu's back tattoos from Yakuza 0.

I love this series, or what I have played of it so far, and a huge part of this is due to Kiryu and Majima.  Their story, and in Yakuza 0 in particular their backstories, are so interesting and seeing them develop through 0 and beyond is fantastic.  Yakuza is also perfect for distractions and despite being terrible at them I still enjoy the karaoke and dancing minigames in particular.  Though there are some minigames/activities that I actively try to avoid as they are not for me but there is a range available if there is something you don’t like but still want to participate in others (though you probably won’t be able to fully upgrade things if you don’t do everything so I won’t ever 100% these games). The locations feel lived in and real, they are cities with something happening at any time and distinct enough looks and atmospheres to them that they feel very different despite their similarities.    

Those are (at present) my top 5 JRPGs. I can’t wait to see what the overall results are so keep checking with Pix and Winst0lf for the next blog posts about the Great JRPG Showdown!

5 thoughts on “The Great JRPG Showdown

  1. Nice post 🙂
    Ni no Kuni is in my top 5 too! I played the Switch version. I have NNK II, but I have not started it yet. It looks very good so I’m looking forward to it.
    I can’t imagine what it’d be like if FFXV was my first FF game (I haven’t played it either). My first FF was VI (III) on SNES. I think it’s a bit different 😉
    Can’t wait to see the showdown results!

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  2. This is so cool! Thank you so much for taking part and for writing about your choices! I remembered that you like FF XV but reading this reminded me that I really need to play it 😀 It’d be super interesting if you played the original FF VII as well, I wonder how it would compare for you 🤔

    Thank you again, this was a great read! Looking forward to sharing the results.

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  3. Great list! I’ve only played two of your list items but also loved them: FFXV and Red/Blue. My first Pokemon game was actually the Yellow version and it had an adorable Pikachu following you around, haha. 💗

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