JRPGs led by the ladies

You know what, that sounds pretty good to me!

Yeah, I gotta admit, that's long been part of what's kept me away from Persona. Trailer for this one looks neat, too! Thanks for these!

For something a bit different, SaGa Scarlet Grace is a neat one. Features selectable protagonists like other SaGas, the ladies here being Taria (an ex-witch and potter investigating odd fluctuations) and Urpina (daughter of a noble house on a quest to save her family). The later is recommended by the game as a starter character so kinda the de facto protagonist.

(storytelling and systems are on the obtuse side though, with puzzle-like battles and game being "just" a huge world map, love it but not quite a traditional jRPG).

@sapphicvalkyrja I hope you like them!

The first Blue Reflection has some questionable, somewhat fan servicey scenes which are thankfully absent from the second. I'd ignore all DLC for both, aside from maybe the extra gameplay stuff, but it's really not needed.

Both Blue Reflection and Caligula Effect are lower budget than a lot of the big RPGs so there's a difference to the overall feel and production values but imo, they get a lot of mileage out of what they do have.

I really ought to take a look at SaGa again anyway. Probably dating myself a bit here, I haven't actually played one since Final Fantasy Legend on the GameBoy, lol

The fan service stuff came up for Atelier, too, so not so surprising. Thankfully I've got decent tolerance for it, so it shouldn't make or break the experience for me unless it's utterly egregious, lol. Nice to know about it going ahead either way, 'cause I find it to be at its worse when it blindsides me

Just remembered Ikenfell. Not a game without some issues, but it‘s female-led, and has great gender representation in general (I think it’s still the only commercial game I've played where somebody has neopronouns). And the music rocks.

If we‘re going to count games where you can choose between playing as a male or a female protagonist, I can’t believe no one has mentioned the newer versions of Dragon Quest III yet! It even has the upgraded version of being able to choose between a male or a female protagonist in that you can choose between male and female versions of all of the classes of characters, so you can have a 100% Lady Party, which always rules.

this is a great band name

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@Gaagaagiins Which version of Dragon Quest III should I be looking at for that? That might be a good way for me to get into Dragon Quest

@Gaagaagiins And while we‘re at it, let’s not forget Dragon Quest IV. Unless somebody already did mention it and I missed it. But anyway look how cool she is

I‘m no scholar on the subject of all of the various versions of Dragon Quest games, but as far as I know, that’s an option in any version besides the original NES/Famicom one, maybe also not the Super Famicom version (although the SFC version does let you make female versions of all of the recruitable character classes I'm not certain you can do the same with the Hero).

It's certainly an option in the Android port, though. And while I would hope they'd preserve that in the upcoming 2D-HD remake, I don't know if there's been clear confirmation of that yet.

To be clear I say this as a man but sometimes it's breathtaking how much cooler playing a woman in a videogame very clearly is. Barely even a competition there, even though the male DQIV protag is no slouch either

@Gaagaagiins Yeah Toriyama was on one that day when he clocked into the protagonist factory.

This is also an option in the Switch version, which I think is based on the Android port.

@Gaagaagiins Wait, is choosing gender a normal thing in Dragon Quest games? This thread is the first time I've ever even heard any of the games had the option, let alone more than one…

No, unfortunately, it‘s very much not the norm in Dragon Quest. I actually didn’t even know you could play as a woman in Dragon Quest IV until Mnemogenic posted that above, it may not have been included in the Android port I played.

@sapphicvalkyrja It's definitely not the norm, but DQ IX and X also let you create your own protagonist, so they can be whatever gender you want.

@whatsarobot That is good to know! I should probably finally check out a Dragon Quest game at some point then, aside from the hour or two I spent with the first one as a child…

@sapphicvalkyrja Totally. DQ rules. XI is easily one of the best games of the past decade, and while the protagonist is not a lady, I think the argument could be made that that JRPG is still led by the ladies.

@whatsarobot I never really thought about it but you‘re definitely right. It’s almost a little like Final Fantasy VI where most party members feel equally important, but some of them wind up stealing the show a bit (actually, thinking about it further, that‘s far from the only similarity the two games have). When I think about Dragon Quest XI I’m usually thinking of the events around women characters. Plus, it's one of the rare games where the lead protagonist can be swapped out for any arrangement of party characters!

Oh, this is great then. I've definitely heard a lot of high praise for XI in particular, so I guess it's now on the list, too! Even with someone who has way too much time on her hands, I'm starting to think I'll never have enough time to get to all of these games...but not the worst problem to have!

@sapphicvalkyrja That's the life of a JRPG liker you just described, right there!