Looking to get into Japanese Role-Playing Games but you don’t know where to start? Because other websites have probably told you to start with the classics. Like Chrono Trigger, Pokémon or most of the Final Fantasy titles. However, you want more options, right? Maybe some games that aren’t that mainstream or classic yet? Then you might want to read this, since I have 5 great JRPGs for beginners to tell you about.
5.- The Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky
Trails in the Sky is a series of games that came out on the PSP and PC many years ago. So if you’re looking for something a little bit retro, this is your game. Because it has a fantastic story and an excellent turn-based battle system. It also has, of course, balanced gameplay (being crucially important on JRPGs for beginners). The main story is focused on the first two games. First one being on a physical format an second one being only digital. Where as the third one acts more as a spin-off and it’s only available for PC. Therefore, my true recommendation for this top are the first 2 games. They are amazingly balanced, full of charm and with an outstanding story that will definitely surprise you.
4.- Tales of Xillia
What’s that, you say? You don’t want turn-based games that are long and balanced? Too much to read? Then take a look at Tales of Xillia, part of a franchise that I’m sure needs no introduction. Sure, it’s a PS3 exclusive, but if you’ve got one then this is a title you can’t miss. Especially if you’re a beginner and want to get into the action part of JRPGs. Since it’s got three difficulty settings to choose from, you decide how challenging this marvelous title can be. Because it has a terrific story, with most of its scenes fully voiced. The game is told by passionate characters that aren’t short of charisma or strong development. All this in a beautiful world within a short adventure that shouldn’t take you more than 20 hours to finish. Great JRPG for beginners.
3.- Mercenaries Saga
Here’s another trilogy of games. This time strategy ones for those looking for a pleasant beginning into the tactical field of JRPGs. Originally released for Android and mobile devices, these three titles are more than perfect for you. Mainly because they’re also really balanced and easier to understand than all those other overly complicated strategy games. Now, the second and the third one were ported to the 3ds. But then all three of them were released physically on the Nintendo Switch as Mercenaries Saga Chronicles. So there you have it, 3 different platforms to play these amazing games.
2.- Wild ARMs 3
The Wild ARMs series is among the classics out there when it comes to turn-based RPGs. But everyone has already recommended you the first two. Especially the first one since it’s one of the most popular RPGs on the PS1. However, Wild ARMs 3 was an exclusive to the PS2. That is until it was digitally ported to the PS4 with a full enhancement. Now, is it worth it? Yes, it is, and very, obviously for either console. Because balance is there, story is also there with one of the best female protagonists ever in a JRPG. And the gameplay mechanics will leave you wanting for more. So be ready to immerse deep into an anime styled adventure. But with a strong influence from the Wild, Wild West.
1.- Odin Sphere Leifthrasir
Last, but definitely not least, we’ve got a masterpiece originally released on the PS2. It was remade for the PS3, PS Vita and PS4. That’s three different systems you can choose from in order to play this excellent action-RPG. It’s in 2d, with beautiful graphics, memorable characters and a dramatic story delving tragically into the Nordic Mythology. Now, be sure to get your hands on the remake, since the original PS2 version is tough as nails. That might be far from being among JRPGs for beginners. Although if you’re looking for a real challenge, it could be right up your alley. However, the remake has three different difficulty modes and also a classic mode. This includes the original gameplay settings for those into hard and unforgiving nightmares. Up to you how to play Odin Sphere Leifthrasir, as long as you have enough fun as a beginner of Japanese RPGs.