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BioWare On The Decline Of The JRPG

Illustration for article titled BioWare On The Decline Of The JRPG

Final Fantasy aside, Japanese role-playing games simply don't command the respect (or sales) they once did in the West. You may have an opinion on this! That's great. So do BioWare.


With Mass Effect and Dragon Age both leading the way as far as Western RPGs are concerned, they're a company well-placed to know what's good, and what's not so good, about the Japanese entries in the field.

"The fall of the JRPG in large part is due to a lack of evolution, a lack of progression," BioWare co-founder Greg Zeschuk told Destructoid last week. "They kept delivering the same thing over and over. They make the dressing better, they look prettier, but it's still the same experience".


"My favorite thing, it's funny when you still see it, but the joke of some of the dialogue systems where it asks, 'do you wanna do this or this,' and you say no. 'Do you wanna do this or this?' No. 'Do you wanna do this or this?' No. Lemme think — you want me to say 'yes.' And that, unfortunately, really characterized the JRPG."

"We have big debates on whether GTA is an RPG, for example", he adds, highlighting some of the differences between Western and Japanese approaches. "It's got all the elements, it just doesn't have the numbers. And what gamers here want is that higher depth, that higher integration of features...Mass Effect 2 is in some ways a continuation of that evolution."

Ah, there's the BioWare plug. Still, he's got a point; the more you push those traditional RPG elements under the hood, the more accessible you make the game. The more accessible you make it, the more people will play it, the more money a company makes. Easy!

BioWare co-founder: JRPGs suffer from 'lack of evolution' [Destructoid]

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bullshit reservoir is full

Okay, I gotta start checking Kotatku more often so I can comment on threads that mean something to me sooner when people might actually notice! Oh well, here goes. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. Simple, huh? Let's look at the keyboard. Works pretty good huh? Y'know what though, it's STALE. It's always THE SAME THING. Let's INNOVATE! No. Sure, it's not for everyone. There are other options for those who want them (DVORAK, anyone?), but the standard QWERTY keyboard has stayed the same because it works. There may be some extra bells and whistles here and there (funny buttons at the top that do cool things), but the basic device is the same as it has been for decades. Fancy that.

Let's get an actual gaming example. Mega Man 9 (or even better, 10). Guess what they did there? They went back to the formula that WORKED. It worked for YEARS and people loved it. So now when they go back to that old SUCCESSFUL formula, what happens? It STILL WORKS. FANCY THAT!!! I'm getting a little angry here now, forgive me for that. I'm just so sick of people requiring innovation in their games. You don't need to innovate pizza. I like pepperoni pizza, it's good. I'm not always in the mood for it, and it does get old sometimes, but I always come back to it because it's DELICIOUS.

So now how about those JRPGs, huh? Well guess what? I, and a number of other people, LIKE those "same old boring cliche blah blah blah blah" games. I've liked them for well over a decade, and I don't see that changing much. I loved Final Fantasy (1-10), I loved Dragon Warrior (Quest, whatever, 1-8 haven't tried 9), I loved Super Mario RPG, I loved Tales of (Phantasia, Destiny, Symphonia, Abyss, Vesperia), I loved Breath of Fire (1-4), I loved Earthbound, I loved Grandia, I loved Xenogears, I loved Chrono Trigger, I loved Chrono Cross, I loved Lunar (1 and 2), I loved Golden Sun, I loved Paper Mario, I loved Wild Arms, I LIKE THE GENRE THE WAY IT IS. IT'S GOOD.

So don't listen to this douchebag, or any other people who DEMAND innovation in their games. I like the QWERTY keyboard, I like pepperoni pizza, I like Pepsi, I like JRPGs, and while I might not want these things at every occasion, guess what? I'M GOING TO FUCKING COME BACK TO THEM BECAUSE THEY ARE WHAT I LIKE GOD DAMMIT. LEAVE JRPGS THE FUCK ALONE.

'Kay, end foul language, end rant. Have a nice day. Remember, you don't have to like JRPGs. I sure as hell don't like anchovies on my pizza.