The Nintendo Switch is the perfect system for JRPGs because of its portable form factor. Here are the best JRPGs on Switch so far.
Best JRPGs on Switch
- The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
- Xenoblade Chronicles 2
- Disgaea 5
- I Am Setsuna
- Romancing SaGa 2
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
As the headlining title for the Switch’s launch lineup, Breath of the Wild isn’t just the best game available on the Switch right now, it’s also one of the best RPGs we’ve ever played. While it doesn’t exactly feature traditional JRPG elements like turn-based combat or leveling, it makes up for that with fantastic world-building and exploration, along with 120 shrines full of puzzles and brainteasers for you to try.
Xenoblade Chronicles 2
If Breath of the Wild was a great start to the Switch’s 2017, then Xenoblade Chronicles 2 was the perfect bookend to the year. This massive JRPG features a staggeringly large open-world with a whole multitude of side quests for you to tackle. The combat and upgrade systems are deep, and it definitely has a rather steep learning curve. But if you can stick with it, you’ll easily lose a hundred hours to this game.
Disgaea 5 is already available on the PS4, but this is still one of the best JRPGs you can take with you on the go because of how it’s structured. The turn-based tactical combat system offers up a lot of depth in how you can approach various encounters, and if you’re a player who loves seeing numbers continuously go up and the idea of hitting level 1,000 appeals greatly to you, look no further. The trope-ish story and characters can get a little grating at times, but it’s a small price to pay for the fun combat that Disgaea 5 offers.
I Am Setsuna
Despite the story feeling a little generic at times, I Am Setsuna is kind of like a comfort food type of JRPG that takes its cues from classic games like Chrono Trigger and Final Fantasy VI. Except with small 3D models instead of 2D sprites, which was a huge misstep on the developers’ part. Still, the turn-based combat system is very similar to that of Chrono Trigger’s, and its lovely soundtrack will keep you engaged for a while.
Romancing SaGa 2
Originally released in 1993, Square Enix has completely remade Romancing SaGa 2 to give it a fresher look, and also to update its various systems and mechanics to keep up with the times. The game’s hook is that any of your characters could die at any point in time, but because you’re taking control of whole generations of family members in the Avalon bloodline, you’ll always have another character to take a dead character’s place. It’s still a little dated by today’s standards, but the improved controls make this gem much more user-friendly, and JRPG fans shouldn’t skip this one.
Octopath Traveler is the best JRPG you can play on the Switch right now, no questions asked. Featuring gorgeous ‘2D-HD’ sprites and environments, Square Enix has provided a modern facelift for the classic SNES-style graphics, and it’s breathtaking. Octopath Traveler also features a soundtrack that is instantly iconic and memorable, along with a fun battle system that builds upon the innovative mechanics from Bravely Default. The eight separate storyline structure might not be for everyone, but you’re sure to find a few characters that you can latch on to as the story progresses.
The World Ends With You: Final Remix
An enhanced port of the original DS game from back in 2007, The World Ends With You: Final Remix features updated visuals and music. While the touchscreen controls in handheld mode can be a little frustrating, TWEWY’s pin combat system is still pretty unique, and it’s fun to be able to unlock better pins and gear as you keep playing. The story is definitely the main highlight here, as players will take control of Neku, a loner teenager determined to shut himself off from the world. If that sounds unappealing to you, stick with it, as he undergoes quite a major development arc.
Valkyria Chronicles 4
With Valkyria Chronicles 4, Sega has effectively brought the popular JRPG series back to its tactical, turn-based roots. This game still features the same, timeless watercolor storybook graphics from the previous games, and it looks fantastic on the Switch. Valkyria Chronicles 4 follows the brand new Squad E, with a story that takes place during the same time as the events of the first game. The combat system is unique as well, and players will have to manually move their units around on a battlefield in a mix of action and turn-based fashion, while also keeping an eye on what the enemy is doing.
Monster Hunter Generations Ultimate
Monster Hunter Generations Ultimate marks the series’ debut on the Nintendo Switch, and this is one of the best action-oriented JRPGs you can get on the console right now. The G-Rank hunts are back, and online play works absolutely flawlessly in this port. There are a few new Hunter Styles and Arts to play around with, and this is the perfect game to play with friends during a lazy weekend.
Final Fantasy XV Pocket Edition
While it may not look quite as pretty as its PS4, Xbox One, and PC counterparts, Final Fantasy XV Pocket Edition is still a solid pickup for fans who just want the main story. Pocket Edition actually does a good job of trimming the fat, streamlining the combat, and giving players only the essentials when it comes to plot elements. You won’t be spending a lot of time driving and hunting down monsters for side quests here, so this is an easy JRPG to get through in a relatively short amount of time.
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
Z is a ridiculous fangirl of Metal Gear and anything Souls-related. She has a B.A. in history but thinks her time is better spent as the resident Reviews Editor around these parts. She also thinks Amazon's Kindle is the greatest technological invention in the world. You can reach her at [email protected]