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Thread: COG Connected listed the 11 most insane JRPGs

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    Memento Mori Site Contributor Wolf Kanno's Avatar
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    Smash COG Connected listed the 11 most insane JRPGs

    The question is how many of them have you played? Also do you agree with this list or feel some things are missing?

    Note that the ranking is based on most obscure to least obscure.

    Part 1

    Part 2

    For those too lazy to read the articles
    11. Chrono Cross
    10. Baten Kaitos: Eternal Wings and the Lost Ocean
    9. Wild Arms 3
    8. Digital Devil Saga 1 & 2
    7. Vagrant Story
    6. Persona 2: Innocent Sin/Eternal Punishment
    5. Shadow Hearts/ Shadow Hearts Covenant
    4. Xenosaga
    3. Xenogears
    2. Shin Megami Tensei 3: Nocturne
    1. Final Fantasy VII

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    Hey, I've played all of those except Persona 2. Whether I agree with the list..well yes and no, for like half of them I disagree that they're insane at all, but that's more a disagreement on their notion that their "key points" make a game insane, rather than whether the games listed comply with those key points.

    FFVII for example indeed has a mix of magic and technology, the setting (well, Midgar anyway, not so much the rest of the world) was indeed experimental for its time and it does have flawed characters and a lovecraftian horror. Do I think it's an insane game? Not at all.

    Anyway, some titles that come to mind that I feel are more crazy/weird/experimental than at least some of those listed:

    Parasite Eve - The mix of RPG/survival horror gameplay, the story that's all kinds of weird, all the horror stuff. Definitely crazy.

    Ar Tonelico - Speaking of mixing magic and technology, in this one we have artificially created humanoids who cast song magic by singing in an outlandish, fictional yet fully-fledged language created specifically for this setting. On top of that, using a machine, you dive into the psyche of these artificial humans and explore it Visual Novel-style. Also, the enemies in this game are computer viruses that physically materialize.

    Atelier Marie - The first Atelier game, during a time when JRPGs were all about going on an epic adventure to kill god. Meanwhile in this slice-of-life JRPG you gather materials to use in alchemy so you can craft items to make your workshop successful.

    Xenoblade Chronicles X - For starters it has a full open world, which no other JRPG I can think of has (not even FFXV, which is really only half open world). It of course retains the unique gameplay of the first Xenoblade game, while adding more on top of that, including a ton more customization in characters (particularly the main character) and mech combat. Story-wise it has a major focus on exploration, sidequests and optional characters, rather unlike most JRPGs (especially those of its era). Soundtrack's pretty unique too.

    I'm sure there are more but those were at the top of my head anyway.

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    I've played some of 9 of these, but completed only 5. The others vary on completion level from near the start to almost at the end. It's hard to completely agree or disagree because they don't even seem to have a consistent idea of what they mean by "insane" throughout their list. They give justifications for all that are fine, but it's still a pretty hard sell that a lot of fairly vanilla RPGs are so "insane." Wild ARMs 3 in particularly never struck me as anything but a vanilla RPG. Meanwhile, they're missing some more unusual stuff like Earthbound and Undertale.

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    Digital Devil Saga is a journey. But yes they are missing Earthbound, or just the mother series in general.

    It's odd that they mention atmosphere and don't give a nod to the opening of Persona 3 where Yukari is holding a gun to her head, or the whole shooting yourself thing in general.

    Another one that they missed is Eternal Sonata.

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    Memento Mori Site Contributor Wolf Kanno's Avatar
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    I actually own every game on this list though I've yet to play Baten Kaitos or get very far into Shadow Hearts.

    Yeah I do find it weird that Mother didn't make it onto the list. I understand Undertale didn't simply because the list was more about late 90s/early 00 titles. Still, you would think one of the Disgaea's would have made the list. I also agree that the writer failed to properly explain what their criteria was for ''insane'' as the WA3 section made it seem like it was pure gameplay reasons for being on the list despite the fact the plot for the game really is bat trout crazy.

    I think the one entry I don't agree on this list is Vagrant Story. Yes it's plot is a twisted political spy thriller, but it's hardly what I would call MGS insane.

    I think the entries I'm surprised are missing would be Koudelka (Shadow Hearts spiritual predecessor), Legend of Mana, Breath of Fire V, Drakengard, Star Ocean 3, Disgaea, or Mother/Earthbound.

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    Of that list I have played FFVII and Persona 2. FFVII was quirky for sure, but does it belong on the same list as this?:

    persona2hitler.png


    Maybe not.

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    Feel the Bern Administrator Del Murder's Avatar
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    I've only played four of them. Some of them seem interesting and I'd love to try them, but I don't know how to get them onto a modern console (or a hacked PSP). Any thoughts? Particularly these four:

    6. Persona 2: Innocent Sin/Eternal Punishment
    5. Shadow Hearts/ Shadow Hearts Covenant
    4. Xenosaga
    2. Shin Megami Tensei 3: Nocturne

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    Memento Mori Site Contributor Wolf Kanno's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Del Murder View Post
    I've only played four of them. Some of them seem interesting and I'd love to try them, but I don't know how to get them onto a modern console (or a hacked PSP). Any thoughts? Particularly these four:

    6. Persona 2: Innocent Sin/Eternal Punishment
    5. Shadow Hearts/ Shadow Hearts Covenant
    4. Xenosaga
    2. Shin Megami Tensei 3: Nocturne
    Persona 2 duology are both available on the PSP. Eternal Punishment is a PSN download and IS should be fairly easy to find used, just be careful about spending too much. I think it may also be available on PSN as well

    Shadow Hearts may be an issue as it never got a digital re-release and a quick scan of some online prices has this series a bit jacked up from the last time I checked. I would either look around for a good deal or likely just go straight to emulation for this series if you can't find a good deal.

    SMTIII is about to get an HD remaster for the PS4 and Switch so you can always just wait it out, otherwise, I think it is also on PSN.

    Xenosaga is another difficult one to get here as Namco just doesn't believe there is enough of a base to release it digitally. So you're going to have to either emulate or dust off that PS2. On the brightside, unlike Shadow Hearts, a quick scan of amazon shows that all three entries are fairly cheap and easy to acquire so at least you won't break the bank. I've found the first two entries for under $10 and the third entry for $15 from just googling it right now.

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