This is a column by Kat Bailey dedicated to the analysis of the once beloved Japanese RPG sub-genre. Tune in every Wednesday for thoughts on white-haired villains, giant robots, Infinity+1 swords, and everything else the wonderful world of JRPGs has to offer.
The year 2000 was incredible for console RPGs developed in Japan. I’m sitting here looking at the list, and so many pantheon level games jump out at me. Final Fantasy IX, Chrono Cross, Vagrant Story, Front Mission 3, Valkyrie Profile and Super Robot Taisen Alpha (the first of the franchise’s “modern” entries) all came out that year. There’s also Legend of Dragoon, Sony’s erstwhile attempt to piggyback on the success of SquareSoft. And as it happens, it hit the PSN this week.
The impending arrival of The Legend of Dragoon has brought with it a wave of nostalgia from some very vocal fans; and boy, they will not brook any criticism of their favorite game. Just look at what happened when 1UP asked why they should care about Legend of Dragoon: blanket proclamations that it’s the PS1′s most underrated RPG, and by the way, a true classic.
Was it though? Have we all somehow overlooked a true gem of a JRPG? I don’t think so. I would take every one of the RPGs I listed in the introduction over Legend of Dragoon. I do, however, think that Legend of Dragoon has its place in RPG history.