Were you always a PlayStation gamer? Not everyone out there has been. For some of us Final Fantasy VII would be the first-ever attachment into role-playing's lineage. But even before then console and handheld gaming were out and about bringing even earlier Final Fantasy quests and Dragon Warriors into peoples' living rooms. Were you amongst the individuals experiencing these classics?
If so, can you remember any or all of the RPGs you've had your hands on in the past prior to your days as a PlayStation gamer? Even if you started RPGing through the PlayStation, have you ever looked back and maybe ventured through certain oldies?
I am one of those gamers who started RPG gaming long, long before there was a Playstation.
I'm sure I've forgotten more than a few of the games I've played over the years. There were so many great RPGs over the years. Still plenty of them out there too. Hopefully they never go away.
My gosh. This list would be long. I'll just list some games that I can think of right now.
Final Fantasy 1, 4, and 6.
Final Fantasy Legend 1, 2, and 3.
Final Fantasy Adventure
Final Fantasy Mystic Quest
Lufia 1 and 2
Dragon Warrior 1-4
Breath of Fire 1 and 2
That's all I can think of for the moment.
My introduction to RPGs was through my older cousin and his best friend who's brother is my best friend lol. There was a point in time where if you subscribed to Nintendo Power they sent you a free copy of Dragon Warrior. At the time I was just a little guy and my reading skills were very basic. My cousin would play and I would watch him. The same would go for Final Fantasy and Star Tropics. Star Tropics isn't an RPG but more of a Zelda style adventure.
In school I met my other best friend who also happened to love video games and after school I would ride my bike to his house and together with his 2 brothers would play games. Their dad was also a gamer. They didn't have cable TV. Instead they had a massive library of VHS tapes and a bunch of video games. Majority of their games were RPGs. This is where I got to play most of the SNES RPGs as well as my introduction to Phantasy Star.
The first RPG I beat was Chrono Trigger and I was in grade 6. Pretty much all the RPGs I played before then I never finished but as I got older went back and finished them off. I
One weekend really stands out for me. This was not long after Final Fantasy 7 came out and changed the genre. My friend's had 2 televisions. 1 was an old wooden floor model with a newer TV stacked on top. The bottom TV had the PS1 connected with the RF adapter and FF7 where Matthew played and the top TV had the SNES with Secret of Mana where Josh, Luke and I played with the Multi-tap.
We also had a Dungeons and Dragons phase where a few friends from school were into it and made their own campaign. We didn't follow the rules completely as we were 12 and 13 year olds but it was fun.
I'm going to try remembering all of the RPGs I've played prior to the PlayStation by platform:
Nintendo Entertainment System:
Final Fantasy (first-ever role-playing experience)
Super Nintendo Entertainment System:
Secret of Mana
Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars
Mostly my time on RPGs was spent on the Super NES during those days. Though I have watched a friend playing Final Fantasy II and III during the time, it wouldn't be until years later (when they were officially known by their true names) that I would finally play those titles. Final Fantasy: Mystic Quest is another game I've played through PC emulation, but this wouldn't be years until after the PlayStation was already out.
Other games from the earlier days I've played through ports would include everything from Shining Force to the Dragon Quest series (these being filed through the Nintendo DS library).
Emulation is the only way to play some games and when I discovered it, I immediately started searching for RPGs that never left Japan of which there were quite a few. Nintendo Power used to do articles on JRPGs like Fire Emblem and Dragon Quest 5 and 6. Eventually we would get those games but I can remember being so excited when I finally found a translated rom for DQ5 and the original Star Ocean. There's even a sequel to 7th Saga called Mystic Ark!
Although not referred to as emulation, porting games is pretty much the same deal. It's bringing that same experience to a platform the game wasn't intended for. Like that of digitally distributed games, it's basically the same thing isn't it?
Through the PlayStation Network I've gotten plenty of RPGs I've either played before or haven't, Grandia being one example of an RPG I didn't play until recently. Through the Wii's Virtual Console I also managed to play Paper Mario for the first time, as I didn't have a Nintendo 64 at the time of the game's release. The original Star Ocean I'd eventually play myself, but that would be through the remake they did on the PlayStation Portable.