Time to Actually Play a JRPG (For Real This Time)

Not Siralim, though. Anything but Siralim.
Screenshot: Siralim

I am not an RPG fan. Unless you count Zelda as an RPG, in which case you are probably also not an RPG fan.

I just never really caught the bug for it. Not to say I haven’t tried; I’ve given most of the big names a brief taste, just enough to realize that I would never end up finishing them for various reasons. Notable entries in my attempt history are Earthbound, Final Fantasy (the original), various Pokémon games (from the originals to the DS versions), Bowser’s Inside Story, and several other big names.

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Maybe it was the battle systems, maybe it was the stories, or maybe it was simply that I realized the amount of time I would have to sink into these games in order to finish them. All of those seem like nonsense, though, because I can name other games that aren’t RPGs that would fit into all of those categories, and yet I still thoroughly enjoyed. I certainly enjoy lore; Skyrim showed me how much I was willing to dig into hundreds of years worth of fictional history (though I never did finish the main quest itself). Other games have required investments of countless hours to see their finales, but I made it through. For whatever reason, RPGs, particularly JRPGs, have never stuck for me.

But all that is about to change. Maybe. I’m going to start going through as many classic and modern JRPGs as I can, as well as some other similar genres like KRPGs, action RPGs, and anything else that fits with those that I previously had no interest in.

For a starting point, I’ll be using this handy article from Kotaku’s Jason Schreier and playing through as many of these as I can easily acquire. I hereby pledge to play every game on that list until either a) I complete the main story of the game, or b) I have invested a sufficient amount of time into the game to know that I will truly never enjoy it. For a handy example of case b), see my Siralim example from the top. I tried so hard to get into it, especially since being available on iOS meant I could play it anywhere, but it drove me off.

With that, I begin my fiery trial with what I have been told countless times is one of the most penultimate examples of the genre as a whole: Final Fantasy VI, to be played as it was meant to be on the Super Famicom Super Nintendo. A quick Google search tells me that the main story takes around 36 hours to complete, ignoring most side quests and the like, so hopefully I’ll be back in a couple of weeks with my impression and hopefully newfound love for the classic. That, or I’ll hate it and be glad I only paid $40 for the game and the system (thanks, Goodwill). Until then...

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This is the perfect out of context image I could find for this game.
Screenshot: Kotaku

Also, feel free to suggest what other games I should check out in the comments. It has been made abundantly clear that Jason’s list is not close to definitive, so I’m open to any and all suggestions.

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