Why Categorise jRPGs and wRPGs? @ IndieRPGs.com
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March 6th, 2012, 04:54
* Exploration - yep, he's mostly right there. jRPGs will typically lock you in then slowly open the world to you over time. HOWEVER - most wRPGs do similar. Instead of completely locking you out, though, they let you stroll in and get butchered by enemies 10 levels higher than you. (Oblivion was the big exception to that and many gamers hated Bethesda for it.)
* Linear Narrative - yep. jRPGs tend to be more interested in telling a complex story about a team of characters. Some characters will show up only for a time, others may leave the team then come back later, others may stay on but undergo a lot of personality changes, and so on. Because of that, they have to lock the narrative down quite a bit or they run into the "too many story branches" problem. Western RPGs tend to concentrate more on one character with perhaps a few side stories here and there to flesh out the other team members (if any).
* Random battles - used to be, but not so much now. Some games still use them (e.g. Lost Odyssey) and some don't (e.g. Last Remnant).
* Linear Progression - errr, who cares? In all the games you need to pull in enough loot to progress through the game. It doesn't matter if I do 1,000hp damage to a 10,000hp monster or if I do 1hp to a 10hp monster.
* Anime - depends on the game. Even inside a single series it depends on the game. Sometimes you'll even get a mix of anime and not so anime in a single game.
* SciFi - ummm, no.
* More a movie production? Huh? You mean how they often have a lot of CGI?
* Menus - yeah. That's a console thing. If Playstation controllers had 101 keys then I'm sure the menus would be much nicer.
One factor I haven't seen covered is the age of the characters. jRPGs seem to have a lot more main characters that are teenagers. wRPGs leave the kids at home.
I smell a… wumpus!?
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