Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, and Pokemon are all beloved JRPG series that continue to this day. While there are a plethora of ongoing series in the JRPG genre, there are also a ton of standalone games that never made it into a long-running series or even received any sort of sequel.
Many of these games don’t even have spiritual successors, although many more recent games have been inspired by them. There have been so many standalone JRPGs over the past few decades that it’s hard to know them all, and which ones are considered the best differ from person to person. Here are a few you may have missed.
11 rogue galaxy
Rogue Galaxy is a space adventure developed by Level-5 exclusively for the PlayStation 2 in 2005. Like many other level 5 games, many who played the game around the initial international release enjoyed the superb graphics of the game. era and visually stunning art. style. However, opinions regarding the combat were mixed due to its unique yet repetitive action-oriented gameplay.
Many were also unhappy with the lack of story depth and each party character’s backstories compared to other JRPGs of the time. Despite these criticisms, Rogue Galaxy was well received and was digitally re-released on PlayStation 4 in 2015.
ten Eternal Sonata
Developed by tri-crescendo for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 in 2008, Eternal Sonata is unique in that it is set in a fictional dream world seen by composer Frederic Chopin on his deathbed. This dreamlike world is inspired by the life and music of Chopin, with some of his compositions included in the soundtrack. All of the characters that join Chopin’s party are also named after different musical terms.
Eternal Sonata is a beloved game that achieves its goal of making JRPG fans more aware of Chopin’s life and music while containing powerful themes regarding society’s shortcomings. If it ever gets remastered, it could see an even bigger fanbase in the future.
9 infinite space
Unlike other sci-fi JRPGs, the 2009 Nintendo DS title Infinite Space primarily revolves around spaceship combat rather than group combat. Due to this aspect, the characters will be tired after an intergalactic journey and will have to stop at different planets or spaceports to restore their energy; otherwise, they will perform less well in combat.
Although Infinite Space was well received at the time of its release, its sales were poor, which is probably a big part of why there was never a sequel. With mercenaries, pockets of unstable reality, precious ancient artifacts, empires, federations, and more, Infinite Space is an oft-overlooked JRPG that many sci-fi fans would appreciate.
8 Resonance of Fate
Developer Tri-ace is best known for the Star Ocean series, but in 2010 released an independent JRPG called Resonance of Fate for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. Resonance of Fate combines real-time, turn-based gameplay in using the “tri-attack battle system”, where characters in the party can perform different actions depending on how many action points they have. A charge system and different types of damage depending on the weapons used also help to add depth to the fight.
One of the coolest things about Resonance of Fate is that the weapons are mostly different weapon types instead of the mix usually seen in other JRPGs. Resonance of Fate received a 4K remaster for PlayStation 4 and PC in 2018.
Folklore is a 2007 PlayStation 3 exclusive action-RPG developed by Game Republic Inc. and based on Irish mythology. Players take on the role of one of two protagonists with different playstyles who explore the underworld for different reasons. Both have the ability to absorb creatures they have defeated to use the powers for themselves.
While Irish mythology has been seen in many games before, it’s not seen as often in JRPGs, especially on the same scale as Folklore. While Folklore was well received and a sequel was planned, unimpressive sales led to its cancellation, and at the time of writing the first game is only playable on PlayStation 3.
6 The last story
One of three Wii titles featured in Operation rain and another critically acclaimed JRPG developed by Mistwalker, The Last Story is an action-oriented JRPG that was first released in Japan in 2011 and released in North America, Europe, and Australia in 2012.
The Last Story follows the character of Zael and his group as they take part in a conflict between the Human Empire and the Gurak. Unlike other JRPGs where all or at least most party characters are playable, Zael is the only playable party member and instead issues commands to his AI-managed allies. Unfortunately, The Last Story is stuck on the Wii and has never been ported to other platforms, and it’s unlikely to receive a remaster in the future.
5 legend of the dragon
The Legend of Dragoon was developed by Team Japan and first released for the original PlayStation in 1999 in Japan, 2000 in North America, and 2001 in Europe. It has a traditional turn-based combat system with added quick events. At certain points in the game’s story, the characters in the party gain the ability to transform into dragon form, a human-dragon hybrid, once they obtain a dragon spirit, hence the title of the game. .
Despite its more legendary status now, Legend of Dragoon had mixed to average reception at the time of its release, with some saying it was too generic and didn’t do anything new or innovative for the genre. The Legend of Dragoon has also never been re-released on other platforms despite its passionate fanbase.
4 radiant history
Originally released by Atlus for the Nintendo DS in 2011 with a Nintendo 3DS remake in 2017, Radiant Historia is set on the fictional continent of Vainqueur, which is experiencing desertification due to the Sand Plague, which turns any being who contracts it into sand. . After the main character Stocke receives a book called “White Chronicle”, he learns that he can use it to time travel and change the past.
Radiant Historia features turn-based battles on a three-by-three grid and has all the fan base of turn-based JRPGs and familiar tactical games. There is no guarantee that it will be re-released in the future, but Radiant Historia: Perfect Chronology is currently available on the Nintendo 3DS eShop.
3 lost odyssey
Although Mistwalker’s JRPG Blue Dragon had two spin-off titles for the Nintendo DS, their other Xbox 360 exclusive JRPG Lost Odyssey never got sequels or spin-offs. Lost Odyssey features an amnesiac immortal man named Kaim, who tries to figure out what or who caused him to lose his memories. It features turn-based combat similar to that seen in other JRPGs, but adds an “aiming ring system” where timed button presses can add additional effects to character attacks.
Although it was well received, some didn’t like its more traditional gameplay, but that didn’t stop it from selling well. It is also now available through the backwards compatibility feature on Xbox Series X/S.
2 Arcadian sky
First released by Sega and developed by Overworks for the Dreamcast in 2000, Skies of Arcadia is set in the titular world of Arcadia, where all the continents float in the sky. It features a crew of hijackers known as the Blue Rogues on a quest to find the Moon Crystals to stop the evil Valua Empire from taking over the world.
Skies of Arcadia has the typical turn-based combat that many expect from JRPGs, but also has airship battles where players use the ship’s equipped weapons. Other than the GameCube version, Skies of Arcadia: Legends, the game has never been ported to another platform despite initial plans, but maybe one day it will.
1 Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars
It’s hard to say anything about this beloved Super Nintendo JRPG without getting repetitive, but it’s easy to see why so many fans love it so much. It has a distinct art style, providing additional characterization for previously established Mario characters and introducing new ones. There’s also a turn-based combat system with timed attacks that led to the creation of the Paper Mario and Mario & Luigi series, meaning Super Mario RPG has probably the greatest legacy of any standalone JRPG.
You’d think it would be more accessible because of that, but it can only be played on the original Super Nintendo, Super Nintendo Classic, or Wii U Virtual Console.
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