PlayStation might be an old console, but it is truly gold at the same time. Many popular RPG series have become legends starting in PlayStation era. And thanks to those timeless games, we can now play wonderful RPG that uses the same core gameplay mechanics that have been used in the past. So let us flashback a little to know about these top 7 legendary JRPG of PlayStation era you might be familiar with.
7. Tales of Destiny
Tales of Destiny is the successor of Tales of Phantasia and was released in 1998 for PlayStation. As the second game of the Tales series, this game adapts the same mechanics and systems that its predecessor used. The Linear Motion Battle System is still the main attraction of the game. It allows your characters to attack freely without delay and executing combo attacks in linear movement.
The story begins when a young adventurer named Stahn found a talking sword in the storeroom of an airship as a stowaway. The talking sword appears to be one of the 5 Swordians which can be used to save the world. Together with his friend, Stahn sets out on a journey uncovering the secrets of Eye of Atamoni and saving the world from perils.
Suikoden is a RPG published by Konami as the first installment and the beginning of Suikoden series. The game was developed by Konami Computer Entertainment Tokyo and was released initially in 1995 for PlayStation console in Japan, and worldwide a year later. The game was also released for Sega Saturn in 1998 but only in Japan. In the same year, Suikoden was released for PC in Japan.
The game centers on the political struggles of the Scarlet Moon Empire. We will control Scarlet Moon Empire General’s son who is destined to seek out 108 warriors that was known as Stars of Destiny in order to revolt against the corrupted sovereign state and bring peace to a war-torn land. With his comrades and followers, the main character must build an army capable of fighting the Empire’s.
5. Star Ocean: The Second Story
Star Ocean: The Second Story is the second installment of the Star Ocean series made for PlayStation in 1998. Although it has been ported to some platforms, this amazing game started its debut in the classic console such as PlayStation. This game gives the player a choice to play as Claude C. Kenny or Rena Lanford (the two main protagonists) with all its consequences to the story in-game.
This game gives different sensation in playing RPG where you choose which character’s scenario you will play on; resulting in different possibility of recruitable characters. Star Ocean: The Second Story has the real-time combat system that tri-Ace is famous for, and making it as a pioneer of the modern RPG’s real-time battle system. This game is one of tri-Ace’s most critical and commercial successes.
Long before Xenosaga exist in PlayStation 2, there is Xenogears, its predecessor in PlayStation. Xenogears is a RPG developed and published by Squaresoft in 1998, long enough to be called a legend. With the music composed by Yatsunori Mitsuda, it successfully steals the spotlight in PlayStation’s hall of fame. Xenogears became a debut entry in the wider Xeno franchise later.
The story tells about the journey of Fei Fong Wong and his friends as they journey across the world to overthrow the all-powerful rule of Solaris and uncover mysteries concerning their world. The story incorporates themes of Jungian psychology, Freudian thought, and religious symbolism. With a “defect” in Disc 2, Xenogears is still loved by RPG lovers and many are still hoping that there would be a remake on current consoles.
3. Final Fantasy VII
Final Fantasy VII is without a doubt one of the greatest creations of Square Enix. There are too many reasons why this title feels everlasting; now it even has a remake on PlayStation 4. This masterpiece from Square Enix emerged initially in 1997, more than a decade ago. But with every aspect it has: characters, plot, and gameplay successfully moved Square Enix to port the original version into multiplatform.
We will play as Cloud, the main protagonist of Final Fantasy VII and the most popular persona among the RPG characters. Although he isn’t a silent protagonist, Cloud doesn’t speak too much at first. As a former SOLDIER’s proud swordsman, he became arrogant and selfish. But after he discovers about his past, he began to value friendship and starts protecting others, even the Planet.
2. Lunar: Silver Star Story Complete
Lunar: Silver Star Story Complete or simply known as Lunar: Silver Star Story in Japan is a RPG developed by Game Arts and Japan Art Media in 1996 as a remake of the 1992’s Lunar: The Silver Star. While the overall plot remains true to the original, accommodation are made to the PlayStation version’s story to allow for a larger, richer cast, as well as additional scenario.
The game follows the story of Alex, a young boy from a small, humble town who enters a life of adventure and intrigue after being chosen as the heir-apparent to the title of the “Dragonmaster”, guardian of the forces of the planet. With the help of his expanding band of companions, Alex must pass the trials set by ancient dragons to claim his place in history and stop a powerful sorcerer from controlling the world.
1. Suikoden II
Suikoden II is a RPG developed and published by Konami for PlayStation in 1998. The game is the second installment of the Suikoden series and remembered as one of the best RPG ever made. Many players admitted that the fun part of playing Suikoden series lies in the recruitment of the Stars of Destiny, as well as in Suikoden II with over 100 recruitable characters, of which over 40 are usable in combat.
Suikoden II takes place years after the events of the first Suikoden. The story centers on an invasion of the City States of Jowston by the Kingdom of Highland. We will control a silent protagonist who is the adopted son of Genkaku, a hero who saved City States of Jowston in a war againts Highland years ago. With his best friend Jowy Atreides they got caught up in the war along with the burden of a Rune bearer.
PlayStation has more amazing RPG titles to offer for sure; but at least, those games above are enough to represent some the legendary RPG set we can find on this classic console. And if you don’t believe the legendary part, try completing it once and you will not mind playing it again starting from the beginning just to reexperience the plot or uncover more secrets like when I play Star Ocean: The Second Story.
Which one is your favorite legendary JRPG of PlayStation? How many of the games above have you played? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.