When Square Enix went onto the fuc*ing podium at Sony's PS4 conference. I expected them to show that its different for them this time in this new generation, that this generation they will make good games not repeat the same mistakes as the past. I expected a surprise and I was surprised. But in a bad way. They just showed a tech demo we already saw 1 year ago, it was a joke.
Here's why I think it might be different this gen for JRPG's:
1) People are still interested in JRPG's. There is a market out there. The fact is, there are millions of people out there that still want console JRPG's. Kotaku wrote about this recently and proved it. Check the image of the all time top 5 PSN downloads. All the PS1 games are JRPG's and almost all PSP games are JRPG's.
2) Casual gamers and mobile gamers are now playing a lot of RPG's and JRPG's. Another game called Cthulhu Saves The World sold 300,000 copies on PC alone—and another 100,000 on mobile platforms and the Xbox marketplace. Cthulhu Saves The World is a traditional turn-based RPG and was a big success. It indicated that casual gamers are starting to find JRPGs simplistic and easy, just like how casual gamers in Japan find JRPG's simplistic and easy. It seems this day and age devlopers prefer to go for the safe side and make games for casual gamers. If it is found that casual gamers are once again into JRPG's, just like how they were when FF7 was released, then things just change.
3) In the PS3 generation, it is said by many analysts that Japanese developers fell behind mainly because they didn’t adapt to the new technology and couldn’t grasp it or keep up to date. However the PS4 is said to be more open just like the PS2 and is easier to code for.
I want to believe that it will be different this gen. But if we face the harsh reality there is more to indicate that it wont be different for console JRPG's this gen in terms of quantity and popularity Here's why I think it might not be different for console JRPG's this generation in terms of popularity and quantity:
1) I feel that for casual gamers, for the JRPG genre on consoles to be revived, it needs at the least 1 good game to be released early on to get peoples interest. Like Dark Cloud during the PS2 era. To show that early games are what casuals get hooked to, look at Mario 64 , because of that early game, we saw lots of platform games on N64. Or look at resistance, in my opinion because of resistance, FPS games became popular among casual gamers. In my opinion gamers both casual and hard-core, during the early period of a new console launch, will play games that they normally wouldn’t since there is too few games out there. During this period the JRPG genre could have been revived, but there was nto a single JRPG announced at Sony's conference.
2) There aren’t many JRPG devs which can invest a lot of money into an expensive next gen game other than Square Enix. Whatever they realeased early on is likely to play like sh*t, everything they have done during Sony's PS4 conference indicates they are just continuing there past mistakes. During the Snes, PS1 and PS2 era you could always rely on Squaresoft to make quality JRPG's, no company has filled their gap and purpose yet. I think the main ingredient that’s needed to make things different this generation for JRPG's is just one great JRPG game but early on. What is your opinion.