1. SacaSoh

    OP SacaSoh Newbie
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    Hello guys.

    Do you have any recommendations for Switch (or, alternatively, PSP or PSX) JRPGs with low filler/padding content and/or that have QoL settings (such as cheats, fast travel, etc.) so an adult that works full time and study by night have hope to complete (so, no Trails recommendation please)? I give emphasis to QoL improvements, because some of you guys may have played games in their old, original versions, that were slow but the Switch port can be speed up, or random encounters disabled, or something like that that let you skip grindy/bullshitty parts.

    I hate random encounters, but if the game is "that good", or at least non-grindy I could play it. Don't care about graphics at all, I play ASCII roguelikes and get immersed anyways lol.

    I would prefer an RPG with a more mature, less-tropey approach, no harem dating sim bullshit, or anime-ass - though I know that restricts a lot the options and I would be able to play anything if these aspects are not something major to the game or can be skipped. I need a good story to be able to play - it can be something more down-to-the-earth or save-the-world.

    The only JRPGs I've played and finished are Grandia 1 and 2, and I liked both very much due to: their stories are simple (even 2 having the "save the world/kill god" story...), the game pace is perfect (little to none sidequests that don't advance the plot), the gameplay is absolutely fantastic - if a dating sim had Grandia combat I would play it, and they can be finished in 20~25hrs. Played and loved Persona 4 Golden, aaaaand dropped it after ~35hrs due to the game length and BORING dungeons (nice slice of life gameplay though), never gonna play another lol.

    In regards to WRPGs I've played Mass Effect 1 and 2 and Witcher 1 and found them awesome (Witcher has a lot of padding but, at the time I've played, I had lots of time and loved the lore - have no intentions of playing Witcher 3 right now). Mass Effect can be finished under 20hrs even reading all the Lore files, etc., and was the best paced rpg I've ever played. Also loved Disco Elysium but don't know if it is an RPG or an Adventure.

    I did some research (read a lot of topics that ended in people trying to murder each other because - for some - P5 is a short game with 100h of gameplay...), and kind of got some games that look promising (mind you, never played any): FF7, FF10, FF 12, Xenoblade Chronicles DE, SaGa Scarlet Grace.

    Thank you!
     
  2. LyuboA

    LyuboA Unknown Entity
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    Xenoblade Chronicles 2 is amazing game with very good story and you can skip All side quests plus you can mod this game they way you want to play it with a Save Editor and by editing game files you can change lots of game mechanics very easily i played that game several times
     
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  3. PrinceOfBrains

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    As a person who avoids JRPGs very much for the same reasons you recommend, I will say I had a blast with Dragon Quest XI. It is indeed a little 'tropey' (at least in that it doesn't seem to be doing anything new or exciting with the typical fantasy JRPG setup), but it really modernizes and streamlines a lot of the things you need to do, even if it is a bit grindy at times.

    I'm also right in the middle of Persona 5 Strikers, and while it isn't a traditional RPG, I'm having a ton of fun with it. I got a little more than halfway through P5 vanilla before my save file ate itself, and I really prefer Strikers in a lot of ways - it removes or greatly streamlines a lot of the time-consuming social aspects (going to school, interacting with classmates), and focuses more on the combat and moving the story along, even if it feels like every chapter still takes a good long while.
     
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  4. Gep_Etto

    Gep_Etto Advanced Member
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    Final Fantasy VII and Xenoblade Chronicles DE toe the line here: FFVII has great QoL features that can speed up the game and make the random battles more tolerable or even remove them completely. Xenoblade has a pretty straightforward storyline if you ignore the sidequests and the subtle QoL improvements related to combat and mission tracking make it so much better than the Wii version all the while feeling as if they were a part of the game since its inception. However, they both have several dozen hours worth of sidequests and distractions (which you can ignore, of course), their stories are pretty heavy in JRPG tropes (to be fair, FFVII invented some of these tropes) and FFVII can get quite grindy at times. In Xenoblade, you don't really need to grind that much unless you want to tackle some of the late-game sidequests. It's perfectly possible to just power through the story for the most part. So these two games have a bit of what you want and a bit of what you want to avoid.

    I'd give Xenoblade a try first, it's a beautiful game and a real pleasure to play, plus no random encounters: monsters freely roam the world and new ones don't just pop up at you from nowhere, so you can avoid them if you want (some of them will chase you if they see you, though).
     
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  5. Rahkeesh

    Rahkeesh GBAtemp Advanced Maniac
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    XC2 is like the poster child for anime harem tropes and its a ridiculously large game to boot. I guess you can stumble through easy difficulty but otherwise you have to spend at least a little time playing gatcha or seeking out sidequests to fill out your party with rare blades. Its got a ton more layered systems going on and a lot of the side content is actually good that you are skipping.

    XC1 can be fine if you stick with the main story, its a simpler game and most of the sidequests are MMO grade pointless collectathons anyway and you don't need the XP from them, especially with casual mode there if you need it. It is JRPG tropey but not nearly as eyerollingly shonen anime tropey as its sequel, so its probably fine for someone who liked say Grandia.

    FFVII through FFX have a bit of side content but they are pretty good at pointing you in a linear direction, moreso X. XII is a bit iffy because the first half of the game is fairly open ended with a bajillion side quests.

    If you *really* don't care about graphics though then you can get much shorter games heading over to indie and retro sphere. Like Cosmic Star Heroine comes to mind, its thoroughly turn-based but encounters are fixed rather than random. The Trials of Mana remake is also a fairly linear and not too long action RPG, especially if you ignore the bonus postgame stuff added to the remake.
     
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  6. Yukarion

    Yukarion Newbie
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    if you don't mind non-traditional-ish JRPGs, here are a few I enjoyed as a fellow JRPG lover with little to no time these days:

    Sakuna: Of Rice and Ruin - light-hearted game which switches between an 2D action side-scroller and a rice-growing simulator (which affects various parts of the game, eg, your fighting stats). Story is okay (there's not a lot of it), and it's not the most immersive, but i really enjoyed it back a few months during the busiest part of my life when i had only a few hours each week to play since there's very little overhead to diving back in again.

    Xenoblade DE - over-arching storyline is pretty alright, but character dialogue can get a little trope-y at times (still not too bad though if you can gloss over that). it took me pretty long to work my way through it, and the sidequests are most of the times useless fetch or exterminate quests that can be ignored.

    The World Ends With You - an old game, around 20hrs-ish, not too long and story/dialogue isn't too bad or trope-y (could be misremembering though). not a lot of important side-tracks, and interesting battle system. advancing the story is pretty straightforward. picked it up on the 3DS, so not sure how it is for switch, but as i recall it didn't really need a whole lot of QoL.
     
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  7. Rahkeesh

    Rahkeesh GBAtemp Advanced Maniac
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    I also forgot like the entire Ys series, although these games really put the word "action" into "action RPG," as in it plays almost like a beat-em-up, they tend to be on the short and simple side. Also the main character Adol can't ever be tied down so you won't be burdened with too much cringey anime relationships. A bunch of entires should be on Switch already and are highly regarded. Really enjoyed origins in particular.
     
    Last edited by Rahkeesh, Apr 12, 2021
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  8. Nerdtendo

    Nerdtendo Your friendly neighborhood idiot
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    Bravely Default or Bravely Default 2. They are a bit "tropey" (4 heroes, fantasy, four elemental crystals), but there's enough original to keep it from being too bland. There's a fast forward button that makes the 'grindy' battles super fast. The first game lets you toggle the frequency of random battles at any time (even letting you turn them off if you're okay with missing out on the experience), and the second game gets rid of random battles completely since every battle is fought via a visible overworld encounter.
     
  9. ChaoticCinnabon

    ChaoticCinnabon CEO of Pyra is best girl
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    all the ps1/ps2 age final fantasy ports are good for this.
     
  10. megahog2012

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    The MOTHER/Earthbound series is basically a parody of JRPG's itself. Plus while the customization is a tad limited to text only, you can choose the names of the characters as well as their favorite things, food, and include yourself as well. The characters take place in modern times (with the exception of Mother 3), The stories are simple and pretty mainstream (Again with the exception of Mother3), The Combat system relies on the use of modern objects like Baseball bats and Frying Pans for melee attacks while PSI is this series "Magic". As for healing, you use healing PSI which is limited to certain characters, or eat normal food like pizza, burgers, fries, etc. Instead of curing yourself with potions, you use out of the counter medicine. Basically the series flips the whole genre around for it's time.

    Mother/Earthbound Beginnings: Hard as f*ck. No seriously, you will get your a** kicked very early without any grinding. (It's an NES JRPG, what are you gonna expect) But, things do get progressively easier. Combat is pretty simple as it was inspired by Dragon Quest. As for the story, You are a 12 yr. old boy going out to figure out a dark mystery of your great grandparents and the development of PSI. You meet a bullied nerd, a christian girl, and a gang leader, (Did I mention it's a parody of an 80's American movie as well). The Boy, has healing and defensive PSI that's exclusive to him. He only takes sports equipment with the exception of a yo-yo or boomerang. He can heal members and give them shields or buff their own defense. The Nerd, He mostly uses gun-based items to attack and cannot use PSI. However, he is the only member of the group who can use explosive items in battle and outside as well. Sadly, he is the weakest member of the group without his bombs. But, his skills are reliable outside battle to reach the an interesting area at a lake. The Christian Girl is not a heavy hitter with melee attacks. But, She's a Witch with her Offensive PSI, She can Burn, Freeze, Blind, Electrocute, and litterally NUKE her enemies(PK BEAM if you wanna know). She can also buff her allies' strength for heavy hitting. Like the boy she can also heal her allies too. She carries cooking-ware like frying pans but can optionally carry a boomerang as well. She prefers Ribbons, and she can foresee the future in her dreams. The Gang Leader, A once sweet boy turned down to the path of crime. He actually appears as a boss at first until he calls it a truce after a beat down from the trio. This dude is the opposite of the nerd. Dude can take a hit and deal heavy damage. He uses Knifes and other sharp objects (did I mention that he too, can wield the boomerang). However, he can't use explosives (weak >:P) and he can't use PSI either. (Good thing he's only around for a short time). Though there is a fifth member that is considered non-playable and only available in the later half of the game but trust me, she's a mean metallic momma. The game is pretty short and takes around 3 Days to beat if you know where to go.

    Mother 2/Earthbound: Much easier than it's predecessor, Earthbound has a new system where as, instead of random encounters, the enemies are shown on screen. If you go behind them, the screen overlays a green color, and you are guaranteed the first turn of the battle. If the enemy sneaks behind you, the screen overlays a red color, and the enemy is guaranteed the first turn. If you come up to an enemy and your level is higher, the screen flashes for a sec and quickly ends the battle for you. You have a bit more to work with as with your party members as each come with their own skills but first the story synopsis (We will come back to this in a bit). You are a 13 yr. old boy, who discovers a meteor struck behind town. After checking out said meteor, a bee-like creature (it describes itself not a bee) tells the boy that he hold a key to saving the future from utter destruction from the last game's final boss. You will meet a psychic girl, a young inventive scientist, and an exotic prince in training. Now back to the combat. The boy,he has healing PSI, Shield PSI (although only against physical attacks, However, in later level ups his shield PSI can reflect back damage), He can use PSI Flash which would lower enemies accuracy or straight up kill them in later levels, and the cherry on top.... He can use a PSI based on a favorite thing you choose.He carries bats but he can use the boomerang and yo-yo like the previous protagonist. Make no mistake, this kid can pull through if you need him too. The Psychic Girl, like in the previous game she is better known for her killer elemental attacks, unfortunately she can't nuke her enemies nor heal her allies, but by the power that may be, she can pray away any disasters.... If god isn't feeling like a massive prick in that battle. She can also summon a shield that can block elemental attacks too (and like the boy her PSI shield can reflect back at later levels). Trust and believe, once you give her time she'll be worthy ally to your team. Now we go to the genius of the group. Like the nerd, he can use explosives, he uses gun based weaponry, and since he's a damn genius, he can build weaponry and other useful items at later levels. Also he can find out what the enemy is hiding weather it be it's max HP, elemental weaknesses, and find what the enemy is holding behind them. Too bad he can't hit hard without his boom-booms. Even though is attack stats are low, the genius can still hold up just as well as others for his inventions. Now last but not least.... The Prince of Dalaam. He is next in line for the throne and he does not hold anything back. This exotic fighter is similar to the gang leader but can also use PSI as well. His attacks stats are extremely strong but it takes a long time for him to learn PSI. In fact, He actually has to leave you for a bit of the story to Learn an exclusive PSI spell, PK (PSI in US/EU regions) STARSTORM. He also is very picky on his food and what he uses for fighting. Now that the playable characters are out of the way, I should mention that there are more people to meet in Earthbound, and continents to explore. The game is fairly longer than the NES title but it's worth checking out once in your lifetime. Also it's easier on RPG beginners as it utilizes a rolling HP meter, meaning if a player gets hit, they have time to save themselves before they collapse.

    MOTHER3: Oh boy, This one is one hell of a title. Mother 3 is definitely bigger in terms of story, and character development. Implementing an chapter system, More playable characters, an updated battle system. More orchestrated music. Yeah, it's definitely a sequel worth playing. While it is not localized officially by Nintendo, Mother 3 received a tremendous fan translation that is still worked on to this day for other languages. The story for this one.... Let's say it's a crazy chain of events involving eggs, mecha-dragons, magypsies, and needles. That's all I can give you without spoiling too much. All the PSI is here and they function the same, the characters are... Here there and everywhere. You will be switching characters alot so don't think about sticking with one character as they may not comeback for the rest of the game. Gameplay is generally the same, but whenever you hit A in the beat of the music, you can combo up to 24 hits per character. How enemies are handled are the same. But, if you are higher level you can just rush past your enemies without problems. Honestly, not much is different, except for the characters and story.

    The reason why I never gave the names to the characters because you can choose everyone's name and food and other stuff. The game is meant to be molded to an adventure that the player themselves would personally remember it. Being serious, the Earthbound series is a great JRPG series that doesn't take itself too seriously until the third game. Earthbound Beginnings is available for Nintendo Wii U virtual console, EarthBound is available for Wii U Virtual Console, Nintendo Switch Online SNES app, and if you're able to find one for a nice price, the SNES Mini Classic Edition.
     
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