Persona 5, Final Fantasy XV, and now Dragon Quest XI, at least in Japan, have all proven that the JRPG genre still has a lot of life left within it and the potential to deliver some breathtaking experiences to longtime fans.
However, the average console JRPG requires an absurd amount of production value, and that towering price combined with the fact that most JRPGs are enjoyed by a niche audience these days all point at a huge risk, one which Sony might like to try again… but not definitely.
Sony Interactive Entertainment Worldwide Studio Shuhei Yoshida and Sony Interactive Entertainment Japan and Asia President Atsushi Morita both recently sat down for a chat with Dengeki Online and Famitsu, and the questioning came around to the likes of Wild ARMs and Arc the Lad, PlayStation-era JRPGs that helped put Sony on the map.
What chances did they have of coming back again?
Yoshida and Morita replied with fondness towards the idea, but the translation reportedly includes a lot of “maybes” and “considering.” It makes sense since Sony has to duke it out on a global scene now with Microsoft and doesn’t really have the resources to sink into massive JRPGs since other genres have proven more profitable and less risky since the days of the PlayStation and PlayStation 2.
Which series would be best due for a comeback?
Wild ARMs and Arc the Lad spanned the most releases over the course of Sony’s JRPG days, but most fans best remember the one-hit wonder Legend of Dragoon. This game came out in the gap between Final Fantasy VIII and Final Fantasy IX, and it always felt like Sony dropping the gauntlet on Square for stealing the limelight of its fledgeling console.
Here we are in 2017 though, and Square Enix is still making Final Fantasy. Yet, Sony never got around to another Legend of Dragoon. Wouldn’t that be a nice surprise comeback?