Should most JRPGs be around this games length?

  • 73 results
  • 1
  • 2
#51 Posted by anywhereilay (143 posts) -

No, to be honest the gameplay in the stick of truth was way more simplistic than most JRPGs and it became repetitive way faster (I still haven't completed it because of how easy and dull I'm finding the game).

#52 Posted by ProfessorEss (7281 posts) -

I just wish most of them would start faster.

I personally enjoy a game with a nice wander and grind element to it but more often then not I don't make it past the long, boring, cutscene-heavy introductions.

#54 Posted by noizy (656 posts) -

Has anyone ever considered an episodic model for JRPGs style games?

#55 Posted by Hailinel (23951 posts) -

@noizy said:

Has anyone ever considered an episodic model for JRPGs style games?

It's been done. Final Fantasy IV: The After Years is one such example. It is not a good game, and the episodic structure has a lot to do with that.

Online
#56 Posted by Veektarius (4637 posts) -

If you removed the need for grinding and ignored sidequests, most JRPGs would seem like a way more reasonable length, I figure, but not quite that short.

#57 Edited by Rafaelfc (1317 posts) -

What I hope JRPGS would take from the Stick of Truth is not the exact length of it. Just the notion that the game should be as long as it makes sense for the story. No more, no less.

It's not necessary to lengthen it artifically with an endless grind just to meet expectations.

Shin Megami Tensei IV was a pretty good game. It would be even better if they tightened up the experience a bit. There are a billion completely pointless random encounters that don't even give any decent XP.

#59 Posted by Brodehouse (9636 posts) -

If you're looking for a good 6-10 hour JRPG with a comedic bent, I recommend the Penny Arcade JRPGs, episodes 3 and 4. They do the same kind of changes to traditional JRPG structure that makes it palatable in 2014; health recharges between battles, you can blend jobs together, battles are designed to be quick and like little puzzles where you're looking to exploit weaknesses.

#62 Posted by TDot (283 posts) -

Should some games be that short? Absolutely. I do think there are JRPGs that are deserving of their lengths (Persona 3 and 4 come to mind, as the S.Link stuff is fun), but most are bloated and lengthy for no reason other than to pad game length or extend a story that doesn't need it. I think developers could learn from this game on how to keep things fresh and moving.

Specifically on persona 3's length which is longer than 4, much of fighting through the tower was a real drag. Like I would often just listen to podcasts while doing it and hoped it would end soon. Never finished the answer because it was primarily dungeon crawling and a grindfest.

#63 Edited by MormonWarrior (2544 posts) -

I'd appreciate it if more JRPGs didn't feel the need to be Persona length. There's a time and place for those insanely long games, but a 15ish hour RPG sounds really appealing too. That's probably a part of why I like the Mario RPGs so much. They have fun combat, witty writing and some of them aren't extremely long.

#65 Posted by Nightriff (4921 posts) -

NO! Persona 5 better be hundreds of hours

Online
#66 Edited by TheManWithNoPlan (5267 posts) -

I don't know about most, but far more should be shorter experiences overall. I really love Jrpgs, but I play so few of them just because of the amount of time I know I'm going to have to invest to complete them. It's taken me about 15 hours to get to the last stretch of the Sitck of Truth. Even if most people get through it in 12 hours, I don't know what people are doing with their lives to think a 12 to 15 hours game is short. Journey is short. Gone Home is short. Brothers is short.(I dearly love all three for the record) The Stick of Truth is not short. It feels just as long as it needs to be.

#68 Posted by Xanadu (301 posts) -

I find it's really a very popular misconception that JRPG = grinding. Most of the the JRPGs I've played were entirely beatable without grinding at all. In fact, grinding takes out a lot of the challenge and thus fun of using all of your resources to win a fight. Hell, Kefka's a bloody joke at high levels.

I would actually agree with you about this. I did not grind very much at all in Persona 4 and fought some bosses 10 levels lower then what the internet suggested. It just means you have to understand their weaknesses or be able to come up with good strategies. I also had a few nail biting moments where I was down to one guy with no SP and had to use a magic item on my last possible turn to kill a boss. So I definitely agree that it is more challenging and fun to not grind your way out of these games.

#69 Posted by Aetheldod (3514 posts) -

I think that rather the time , is the side content that needs to be either trimmed out or improved upon , many a times I just hated to arrive to a new town in many rpgs because it meant more lackluster content and lame npcs. Also conversations needs to be more like in western rpgs I think. Also they should stop using their voice actors from the US , they are terrible. Altho yeah more packed stuff would be awesome as well.

#70 Posted by DonutFever (3550 posts) -

Some, it depends on the game. I feel like most JRPGs have some parts that feel like they're unnecessarily stretching the game out.

#71 Edited by Hunter5024 (5551 posts) -

I've been arguing for shorter JRPGs for years. Length for the sake of length is pointless, and frustrating. Many JRPGs fall into this trap just because it's what we've come to expect from the genre. South Park specifically is a little shorter than I'd like out of a lot of my JRPGs, but I would be willing to play a lot more of them if they didn't insist they needed to be 60 hours, and then pad the shit out of the games to hit that mark. There's nothing wrong with a solid 25-30 hours, that's downright respectable compared to basically every other kind of game.

As long as they give the characters enough time to grow (in a story and statistical sense), I don't see how a shorter length would hurt the game. It would just make the good bits more meaningful, it would be less intimidating for newer people who are interested in these kinds of games, and it would allow people who enjoy these kinds of games to play even more of them.

#72 Posted by Hailinel (23951 posts) -

@hunter5024: Can you name examples? It doesn't do any good to say that games in any genre arev too long if you can't provide titles that supposedly are and why.

Online
#73 Posted by hermes (1385 posts) -

As others have said, it has to be the length it feels right for the story.

In fact, South Park has the problem of feeling too short in content. I am less than half game in, and I already reached the level cap. It is not that I have been grinding, but I have not used Timmy's fast travel, and at this point I have no way to make my character grow.

So, no, I wouldn't be too pissed of if the game was projected to be a little bigger.

#74 Posted by Rebel_Scum (642 posts) -

I'd prefer it if about 60% of games were in the <20 hour mark.

#75 Edited by Hunter5024 (5551 posts) -

@hailinel: Bravely Default is a recent and obvious one, I haven't seen you in any of the threads about it though, so I don't want to spoil anything if you're not there yet.

In Final Fantasy 13, when you get to Pulse, you basically have to grind for a significant amount of time with almost no story content. In fact the whole Pulse act ended up being pretty pointless story wise, and it really killed the whole "on the run" pace they'd kept up to that point. 13-2's length was kind of a sweet spot for me, but they still had that dumb part where you were supposed to look for gravity cores, which without a walkthrough basically required you to run around all the areas you'd already been to for a couple hours in search of dumb macguffins.

In Ni No Kuni they frontloaded a lot of those great cut scenes, which is unfortunate because that's where the game got a lot of it's charm from, when the cutscenes started to dry up towards the middle of the game, the whole thing started to be less interesting. If they'd had the budget to continue the output of those earlier sections it wouldn't have been a problem, but if they'd made the game shorter, than there wouldn't have been such a large part of the game that felt like a drag.

Then there's that Nier stuff too, but I won't elaborate on that one because it's more of an action game than an RPG, and technically its only post game stuff (even if a lot of the best content is gated by all that mindless recycling).

#76 Posted by ArbitraryWater (11492 posts) -

As someone who just wrote a rather angry denouncement of Bravely Default's rather unfortunate final four chapters... I still really enjoyed 45 or so of the 60 hours I spent playing it. I don't necessarily want shorter JRPGs, at least not ones that are supposedly 15 hours max like South Park. I want JRPGs (or really, RPGs in general) that are paced better and have less padding. Persona 3 and 4 earn their 70+ hour lengths for the most part, but I'm not going to pretend I wouldn't want some of the excess fat cut out. Fat is delicious in moderation, but when I get a prime rib that's like 50% fat I think I should've ordered a New York strip instead.

#77 Edited by ArbitraryWater (11492 posts) -

EDIT: I love the part where I can't delete these double posts.

#78 Posted by Demoskinos (14581 posts) -

I agree with Hailinel. Here is the thing that "wasted time" so many are talking about in JRPG's is entirely relative to the player. A lot of people found the opening sections of Final Fantasy XIII boring and that is fine. Personally, I really enjoyed it. What is a grind or poorly paced to others can be enjoyable to other people. Its all about finding what works for you.

Online
#79 Posted by Pezen (1565 posts) -

I am of two minds when it comes to this issue. On one hand the length and time commitment to finishing a JRPG is one that these days isn't as attractive as it used to be. Sure, I could get 30-60 some hours out of some games easy, but most of those are multiplayer focused and played in 10 minutes to an hour tops and it doesn't have to be done with any regularity. But if I am being honest with myself, it's not actually the length that's the issue with these games, it's what that length actually amounts to me doing for those hours. Which is why I also think the time in and of itself is fine taken at face value. However, the gameplay design is archaic and in dire need of a rethinking.

Because when it all comes down to it, my biggest pet peeve with all JRPG is that the thing I spend the most time eventually doing (engaging in it's lackluster combat system) is just not up to par with how much I tend to enjoy the stories. And it is all made worse by the fact that the leveling system usually assumes you feel like grinding, which accumulates to more hours pointlessly hitting an menu.

But that's on me, and I sort of wish I could get games like Persona 4 or Suikoden V with less combat and more just running around in the environments and interacting with the characters. The issue is, that's what those games are. Those games comes with a certain type of gameplay philosophy. I just wish I liked it more or that it was better and/or more forgiving to people like me who just want to experience the adventure so to speak.

I suppose that's a long way of saying, I don't think JRPGs necessarily need to be shorter. But I wish the bulk of the time spent in them wasn't such a pointless grind and that they used their hours better.

#80 Edited by Dixavd (1305 posts) -

Almost all JRPGs can be completed in 15-30 hours. If you want an experience to be quick then head straight to the main quests, don't bother min/maxing stats and items (just buy the things you use - at every new town/shop buy the best next tier of gear and sell the previous one). When you don't think about this crap, and just head to the story beats, you'll be surprised how quick most JRPG's are (and you'll also learn how much fun it can be to fight against tough enemies in a JRPG and finally overcome them then you are under-levelled*)

That said, I love getting the most out of everything and I tend to try and at least get through 50% of the side content (on shorter ones like FFXIII-2, I'll 100% them while others like Final Fantasy XII, I'll just try and side-quests I stumble on to as I'm doing things and not push myself to find every single one and go out-of-my-way to complete them).

*Though most games created now tend to have moved away from punishing the player who goes straight to the end, and just rewards the players who explore - in which case, it'll be tough finding them difficult no matter what you do).

#81 Posted by TheHBK (5466 posts) -

It is the thing I never got about JRPGs, developers think Length is a measurement of quality or the work that went into them. I mean, having to grind and go from town to town sucks ass. I play games like KOTOR and see how you can play these battles and level up accordingly to beat the game. But to often hear how the first 20 hours suck but then it gets really good is odd.

#82 Posted by Hailinel (23951 posts) -

@hailinel: Bravely Default is a recent and obvious one, I haven't seen you in any of the threads about it though, so I don't want to spoil anything if you're not there yet.

In Final Fantasy 13, when you get to Pulse, you basically have to grind for a significant amount of time with almost no story content. In fact the whole Pulse act ended up being pretty pointless story wise, and it really killed the whole "on the run" pace they'd kept up to that point. 13-2's length was kind of a sweet spot for me, but they still had that dumb part where you were supposed to look for gravity cores, which without a walkthrough basically required you to run around all the areas you'd already been to for a couple hours in search of dumb macguffins.

In Ni No Kuni they frontloaded a lot of those great cut scenes, which is unfortunate because that's where the game got a lot of it's charm from, when the cutscenes started to dry up towards the middle of the game, the whole thing started to be less interesting. If they'd had the budget to continue the output of those earlier sections it wouldn't have been a problem, but if they'd made the game shorter, than there wouldn't have been such a large part of the game that felt like a drag.

Then there's that Nier stuff too, but I won't elaborate on that one because it's more of an action game than an RPG, and technically its only post game stuff (even if a lot of the best content is gated by all that mindless recycling).

I can't speak at length regarding most of the games you named, but as far as FFXIII goes, I never felt that the Pulse section was that tacked on. Having at least a bit of freedom to move at my own pace, fight monsters on Pulse and accomplish some sidequests was a nice break from the game's constant "on the run" attitude. I accomplished as much as I felt like doing in that section and then moved on when I felt like it. I'd also ask, is the gravity core hunt portion of XIII-2 really any more egregious in its design than any other mandatory item hunt found in any genre? Does it really pad the game out that much? There are games designed entirely as collectathons that force the player to snag multitudes of widgets for little purpose other than widget-gathering. XIII-2's gravity core hunt is at least focused on one objective, and even though you're revisiting areas you've been to before, that in itself is also not necessarily a bad thing. You say yourself that it only takes a couple of hours. That sounds far more interesting to me than, say, having to gather up seven different kinds of items just for the sake of making any sort of progress in Star Fox Adventures.

Online
#83 Posted by Hailinel (23951 posts) -

@thehbk said:

It is the thing I never got about JRPGs, developers think Length is a measurement of quality or the work that went into them. I mean, having to grind and go from town to town sucks ass. I play games like KOTOR and see how you can play these battles and level up accordingly to beat the game. But to often hear how the first 20 hours suck but then it gets really good is odd.

When has a developer of an RPG, Japanese or otherwise, ever said that length specifically, in and of itself, is a measure of quality?

Online
#84 Posted by Hunter5024 (5551 posts) -

@hailinel said:
@hunter5024 said:

@hailinel: In Final Fantasy 13, when you get to Pulse, you basically have to grind for a significant amount of time with almost no story content. In fact the whole Pulse act ended up being pretty pointless story wise, and it really killed the whole "on the run" pace they'd kept up to that point. 13-2's length was kind of a sweet spot for me, but they still had that dumb part where you were supposed to look for gravity cores, which without a walkthrough basically required you to run around all the areas you'd already been to for a couple hours in search of dumb macguffins.

I can't speak at length regarding most of the games you named, but as far as FFXIII goes, I never felt that the Pulse section was that tacked on. Having at least a bit of freedom to move at my own pace, fight monsters on Pulse and accomplish some sidequests was a nice break from the game's constant "on the run" attitude. I accomplished as much as I felt like doing in that section and then moved on when I felt like it. I'd also ask, is the gravity core hunt portion of XIII-2 really any more egregious in its design than any other mandatory item hunt found in any genre? Does it really pad the game out that much? There are games designed entirely as collectathons that force the player to snag multitudes of widgets for little purpose other than widget-gathering. XIII-2's gravity core hunt is at least focused on one objective, and even though you're revisiting areas you've been to before, that in itself is also not necessarily a bad thing. You say yourself that it only takes a couple of hours. That sounds far more interesting to me than, say, having to gather up seven different kinds of items just for the sake of making any sort of progress in Star Fox Adventures.

I wouldn't say Pulse was tacked on, but the combat/story ratio took a pretty harsh turn towards combat in that section. Which I guess is cool if you're looking for that sort of thing, but if you're primarily in it for the story, that part was totally padding, especially compared to the rest of the game. If it had been optional content, then great, but it was basically mandatory grinding. On the other hand, if you're mainly in the game for the combat, you do have the option of skipping cut scenes. Not really fair.

Like I said, I didn't mind it in 13-2 so much, but even if it could have been a lot worse, it was still 2 hours that added basically nothing to the game other than length. 2 hours may may not sound like much in a 30 hour game, but remember, in other genres, 2 hours is a significant chunk of the play time. You could play through an entire indie game in the time it takes to do that one tedious quest in 13-2. Anyways I don't have a problem with optional collectibles, or a game designed around collectibles, quite the contrary, if your game is built around navigation and traversal they can actually add to the experience, but 13-2 wasn't really built around either of those things. Adding a weird fetch quest at the end of the game didn't compliment anything else you'd been doing, it was just unnecessary.

#85 Posted by TheHBK (5466 posts) -

@hailinel said:

@thehbk said:

It is the thing I never got about JRPGs, developers think Length is a measurement of quality or the work that went into them. I mean, having to grind and go from town to town sucks ass. I play games like KOTOR and see how you can play these battles and level up accordingly to beat the game. But to often hear how the first 20 hours suck but then it gets really good is odd.

When has a developer of an RPG, Japanese or otherwise, ever said that length specifically, in and of itself, is a measure of quality?

The way they talk about it. As if it is a point of pride. Look at any of these interviews and they are so quick to point out how long it takes to beat the game. Unlike other RPGs, where they talk about content and not just beating the game. Like here. So they won't outright say it. But come on, the game doesn't have to be that long.

#86 Edited by Hailinel (23951 posts) -

@thehbk: That link you provided says nothing of the sort. The dev was asked a question regarding story content and he responded with a more general response regarding the game's cutscene length and overall length. There's no sense of pride in the comment. He's listing off statistics. It seems more the case that you're misinterpreting the words of one dev on one game and extrapolating that out to the dev teams of most games in the genre.

Online

This edit will also create new pages on Giant Bomb for:

Beware, you are proposing to add brand new pages to the wiki along with your edits. Make sure this is what you intended. This will likely increase the time it takes for your changes to go live.

Comment and Save

Until you earn 1000 points all your submissions need to be vetted by other Giant Bomb users. This process takes no more than a few hours and we'll send you an email once approved.