The JRPG franchises of Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, and Pokemon remain popular to this day. Although there are numerous ongoing series in the JRPG genre, there are also many individual games that were not made into a long-running franchise or received any sequels.

Several of these games lack spiritual successors, but they have inspired newer games. With so many individual JRPGs over the past few decades, it's challenging to know all of them, and the best ones will vary from person to person. Below are some lesser-known JRPGs you may have overlooked.

1. Skies of Arcadia

Skies of Arcadia was initially released for the Dreamcast by Sega and developed by Overworks in 2000. The game is set in the world of Arcadia, where all the continents are floating in the sky. The plot revolves around the Blue Rogues, a group of air pirates searching for the Moon Crystals to prevent the Valua empire's conquest.

Skies of Arcadia

The game features typical turn-based combat mechanics found in JRPGs, as well as airship battles that allow players to use their ship's weapons. Although plans were made to port the game to other platforms, Skies of Arcadia has only been re-released as Skies of Arcadia: Legends for the GameCube. However, there is hope that the game may eventually be available on other platforms.

2. Lost Odyssey

Blue Dragon, a JRPG developed by Mistwalker, had two spin-off titles for the Nintendo DS, but Mistwalker's other exclusive Xbox 360 JRPG, Lost Odyssey, never had any sequels or spin-offs. Lost Odyssey's protagonist is Kaim, an amnesiac immortal man, who is searching for the cause of his memory loss. The game employs turn-based combat similar to other JRPGs, but it also includes an "Aim Ring System" that enables players to add extra effects to character attacks through timed button presses.

Lost Odyssey

Lost Odyssey was well-received, but some criticized its more conventional gameplay. Nevertheless, the game performed well commercially. It is currently available through the backward compatibility feature on Xbox Series X/S.

3. Radiant Historia

Radiant Historia was initially developed by Atlus for the Nintendo DS in 2011, with a remake for the Nintendo 3DS in 2017. The game's setting is the fictional continent of Vainqueur, which is undergoing desertification due to the Sand Plague. The disease turns those who contract it into sand. After receiving a book called the "White Chronicle," the main character, Stocke, learns he can time travel and alter the past.

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Radiant Historia

Radiant Historia includes turn-based battles on a three-by-three grid and includes features that are typical of turn-based JRPGs and tactical games. There is no assurance that it will be re-released, but Radiant Historia: Perfect Chronology is currently available on the Nintendo 3DS eShop.

4. The Legend of Dragoon

Team Japan developed The Legend of Dragoon, which premiered for the original PlayStation in 1999 in Japan, 2000 in North America, and 2001 in Europe. The game uses a classic turn-based battle system, but it also incorporates quick-time events. When certain events occur in the game's story, party members gain the ability to transform into a Dragoon, a hybrid of human and dragon, after obtaining a Dragoon spirit. The game's title derives from this concept.

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The Legend of Dragoon

At the time of its release, The Legend of Dragoon received mixed to average reviews, with some critics finding it too conventional and lacking in innovation for the genre. Despite its enthusiastic fanbase, the game has never been re-released on other platforms.

5. The Last Story

The Last Story, a highly acclaimed JRPG from Mistwalker, was one of three Wii games that were part of Operation Rainfall. It was released in Japan in 2011 and in North America, Europe, and Australia in 2012. In the game, the protagonist Zael and his party become embroiled in a conflict between the human empire and the Gurak. Unlike most JRPGs, only Zael is a playable character, and the player gives commands to the rest of the party, who are controlled by AI. Unfortunately, The Last Story has never been re-released on other consoles, and it's unlikely that it will receive a remastered version in the future.

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The Last Story

6. Folklore

Folklore is an action RPG exclusive to the PlayStation 3, released in 2007 and developed by Game Republic Inc. The game is based on Irish mythology and follows two protagonists with distinct play styles, both exploring the netherworld for different reasons. They have the ability to absorb creatures they defeat to gain their powers.

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Although Irish mythology has appeared in games before, it is not as common in JRPGs as it is in Folklore. Despite receiving positive reviews, the game's lackluster sales led to the cancellation of a planned sequel. At present, Folklore is only playable on the PlayStation 3.

7. Resonance of Fate

Tri-Ace, known mainly for the Star Ocean series, released a non-related JRPG for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 in 2010 called Resonance of Fate. The game combines real-time and turn-based gameplay by implementing the "tri-attack battle system," which allows party characters to perform various actions based on the number of action points they possess. Additionally, the charging system and different types of damage, which vary depending on the weapons used, enhance the combat experience.

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Resonance of Fate

Resonance of Fate stands out from other JRPGs because the weapons in the game are mostly different types of guns. The game received a 4K remaster for PlayStation 4 and PC in 2018, adding to its popularity.

8. Infinite Space

In contrast to other science fiction JRPGs, the 2009 Nintendo DS game Infinite Space mainly focuses on spaceship battles instead of party-based combat. As a result, characters experience fatigue after traveling between galaxies and must stop at various planets or spaceports to replenish their energy, or their performance in battle will suffer.

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Infinite Space

Despite receiving positive reviews, Infinite Space's sales were mediocre, which is likely the reason why there was never a follow-up. The game includes mercenaries, regions of unstable space-time, ancient artifacts, empires, federations, and other elements, making it an often-overlooked JRPG that sci-fi enthusiasts would appreciate.

9. Eternal Sonata

Eternal Sonata, developed by tri-crescendo for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 in 2008, is a game with a unique setting. The game takes place in a fictional dream world that composer Frédéric Chopin allegedly saw on his deathbed. This dream world is influenced by Chopin's music and life, with some of his compositions included in the soundtrack. Each character who joins Chopin's party is named after a different musical term. The game is well-loved and achieves its goal of introducing Chopin's life and music to JRPG fans, as well as addressing societal issues. A remastered version could potentially attract an even larger fanbase.

Eternal Sonata

10. Rogue Galaxy

In 2005, Level-5 developed Rogue Galaxy, a space-faring adventure game exclusively for PlayStation 2. The game was praised by players during its initial international release for its stunning graphics and visually appealing art style, which is characteristic of other Level-5 games. However, there were mixed opinions about the combat mechanics, which were unique but repetitive in nature.

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Rogue Galaxy

Some fans were disappointed with the story's lack of depth, as well as the character backstories, which were not as fleshed out compared to other JRPGs released during the same period. Despite these criticisms, Rogue Galaxy was received positively, and it was digitally re-released for PlayStation 4 in 2015.

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