Are RPGs too long?

It has become normal for many RPGs to be 30-50 hours long. I used to think that was a good thing about RPGs, but over the past few years I’ve found myself not finishing many of the RPGs I’ve started. The repetitive turned based battle systems many RPGs have combined with the normally mediocre stories just don’t interest me for 50 hours. If an RPG isn’t one of my favorites, I tend to play it only about 10-20 hours before stopping. Do any of you guys have the same problem? Do you think a solution would be to just shorten RPGs and drop their price a bit? Or do you think long RPGs are good because someone can just stop if they get bored of them? Overall, do you think RPGs are too long?

RPGs have been 30-50 hours since the beginning of time. The typical JRPG formula hasn’t changed at all. It could be that you’re just losing interest in them. For some reason, I can still play them and I fully recognize how formulaic they’ve become. Or remained.

The original FF you can probably finish in about 11 hours or so. FFXIII is reportedly almost 100 hours. So… yeah. Not even close, DR.

FFXIII is not really 100 hours. More like half that.

I see where fullmetal is coming from and what you’re describing (mediocre stories with stale gameplay mechanics) is why the genre in general is in trouble. A lot fewer RPGs are made and for people who’ve played them for as long as we have, we’ve gotten to a point where we’ve either outgrown some of the key elements (12 year old protagonists) or are tired of being resold something we saw years ago for the 3rd time already.

Its also why companies are experimenting with RPG elements. What you need to ask yourself is what were you playing RPGs for? If its for stories, you’ll find that games like GTA IV and Mass Effect have excellent stories and writing, though extremely different gameplay mechanics. I recommend trying new things. Some games manage to play the traditional card and still succeed, like Tales of Vesperia, but they’re getting very very rare.

I don’t want shorter or cheaper games. I just want games that are better written and have a well polished , even if unoriginal, gameplay system.

Being the obsessive/compulsive person I am (it runs in the family :wink: ) I’m used to playing 70-100 hours per RPG as long as I get EVERYTHING in the first play through; and by that I mean not just items and optional bosses but even hidden story scenes (I actually played STAR OCEAN 2 with BOTH main characters, alternating between files.) The only things I don’t bother to get are the ones that get ridiculously difficult to obtain, like in FF10- dodging lightning bolts 200 times? Screw that! Besides, I can use my codebreaker if I REALLY want some near-impossible-to-get item.

Still, my first interest in RPGs is the stories. I just finished playing Phantom Brave and I just LOVED it- for all its cliches, it was very well dialogued and voice-acted, even the sprites were surprisingly expressive. It was worth fighting all those tactical battles to see it happen. I’m currently playing La Pucelle, another tactical by the same company, and I’m having a blast. Ideally, I buy a game a month and finish it by the next

I think JRPGs’ average length moves with trends. Older RPGs used to be about 20 hours (30 if it was LONG) until FF7 came out. After that, we saw a shift to much longer RPGs, but I think their average length has been going down again (I’d say average length now is 30-ish).

But yeah. Personally, I think the JRPG genre has a lot of room to grow, and simply doesn’t. I used to just review JRPGs cos it was fun, and while I still find it fun, I now do it to document what RPGs are doing these days. I like to find the ones that actually try to mix it up, and tell anyone who’s willing to listen. A lot of people think JRPGs are pretty much dead, but I people with that opinion have just never played anything that was radically different in the genre (except FF13, and seriously fuck that shit). JRPGs have a lot of room to grow; they just need to finally fucking do it.

Honestly I had to give up on SO2 since I had blown nearly 20 hours breaking the game to hell and back and found no incentive to continue. Nothing really worked the way it was supposed to, the “plot” was either an intentional troll or was really bad bad fanfiction (in a way that bad fanfiction can be considered bad), everything between my hilariously overpowered party and the final battle are just a bunch of unwinnable boss fights, and there isn’t even an ENC NONE option for me to not have to put up with the irritating gameplay.

And it should be noted that I went through Beyond the Beyond not more than a year ago. I just simply don’t have the time for this kind of shit anymore.

Something’s got to be pulling me in there. Why else would you play a game that’s around 50 hours, then end up hating it. Last RPG I totally quit on was Sands of Destruction, because I just got sick of that shit. Poor story, and broke-ass battle system, and I’d just had enough of it. Unfortunately, I only ended up quitting before the final stages of the game, so I’m debating beating it just to do it.

As for SO2, I did actually beat that. It was pretty tolerable up until the final dungeon. After beating the final boss, I decided not to do the post-game BS simply because I didn’t want to deal with the random encounter every floor. Plot was a bit corny, but I guess it was the battle system and wonky voices doing it for me.

Anyways, are RPGs too long? Persona 3 & 4 took me around 80-90 hours on average (give or take how long I took on fusion). Yet, both of these games were a pretty rich experience. Shortening isn’t necessarily a solution, but that’s entirely story dependent. Price doesn’t really make too much of a difference.

So, companies could just make better, more polished games. But that surely isn’t asking for too much, is it?

Any game that sucks is too long. Any game that is good is too short. That is the law of vidya games.

Did you finish it? Did you have to walkthrough it? What were your thoughts?

This post is full of insight, not only for games, but for movies, TV, music, and the like.

Dito! An RPG can’t be long enough for me if it is well written, so that I’ll be sad when it’s over, which was the case with Lufia 2 and FF6, for example. And especially the latter was far from short.

I feel the opposite. I think a lot of games which I ultimately disliked would have been far more enjoyable if they had cut a lot of unnecessary game length. Incidentally, RPGs are the worst about doing this. To use a recent example, I bet I would have enjoyed FF13 a LOT more if it had just ended at about 20 hours. Hell, it’s not like anything of importance happens after 20 hours anyways, lol.

Speaking of long games, I just beat MGS4. 26 hours yo. Actually that isn’t very long.


(I did a lot of Rambo style fucking around.)

  1. It took you 26 hours?

  2. Nevermind, don’t answer that. Stay on topic please.

If its for stories, you’ll find that games like GTA IV and Mass Effect have excellent stories and writing
Wh… what? I… I don’t even-… Does Tetris also make an appearance on your list of games with good stories?

Not to sound like an ass, but MAN. You’re trying to hurt people, Sin. You’re trying to wound them, and it’s mean.

I don’t like it when games are padded to make them last longer (all of WoW :wink: ).

Getting off my horse though, I played through Sands of Destruction just to see if the game could throw at you one challenging battle after you started chaining (answer:no).

Hades: play it then we’ll talk.

Bah, as if I haven’t. Even if it does have a good story hidden beneath the cracks, is it good enough to hinge someone’s motivation to buy it? Let’s face it, GTA4 exists for one reason and story aint it.

Killing cops.

GTA IV’s satire. Black satire. Like fight club. It savages American culture. Violently.