2016 has been the strongest year for the JRPG genre for quite a while, and it just got a surprise title thanks to Microsoft’s backwards compatibility. The Xbox 360 game Blue Dragon from Mistwalker is now available on Xbox One, and fans who own it can go back and explore this misunderstood little gem.
It is also the only game to be added to the backward compatible list today, so no distractions should spring up on your blast through the past.
Blue Dragon stood no chance when it first came out
I think it’s time for the JRPG crowd to give the game a fair second chance as well. Blue Dragon was hyped beyond what the game was capable of when it first came out, and that pang of disappointment never let it catch on. It had comparisons to Final Fantasy thanks to the involvement of series creator Hironobu Sakaguchi through Mistwalker, and, of course, Dragon Quest and even Chrono Trigger itself were name-dropped left and right by Microsoft with the involvement of artist Akira Toriyama.
Blue Dragon is fine, bit it ain’t no Chrono Trigger. That’s okay, because a lot of games aren’t.
We’re a decade removed from its initial release, and Blue Dragon has a chance to be appreciated for what it is rather than what it was hyped to be. It’s a solid, old-fashiond JRPG with bright colors and fun Akira Toriyama characters. This is all that it should ever be viewed as, not a second coming of the JRPG genre, which it wasn’t, and not the torch barer of real classics it was modeled after.
If the Xbox One can help with its performance issues and those that play it ignore the insufferable achievements, which was much harder to do in 2006, then I think Blue Dragon would do quite well for itself nowadays. Fire it up, and let us know what you think. I’d do it, but I have no Xbox One to play it on.