These Guys Want Half A Million To Prove That People Still Love JRPGs

These Guys Want Half A Million To Prove That People Still Love JRPGs

If MonkeyPaw Games raises $US500,000, they’ll know that gamers still love JRPGs. The publisher, previously responsible for bringing Japanese role-playing games like Alundra and Vanguard Bandits to the PlayStation Network, is launching a Kickstarter campaign to prove that the beloved genre ain’t dead yet.

Tomorrow, MonkeyPaw (and partner Gaijinworks) will kick off their Kickstarter to create a deluxe physical version of the RPG Class of Heroes 2, the company has told Kotaku. They want to release an “old-school package”, the type you might have seen in games a decade ago, stuffed with maps and figures and all sorts of other collectibles. To do so, they want half a million dollars.

If this project works out, the team has a “laundry list” of other JRPGs they’d like to bring over to the United States, Gaijinworks president (and former Working Designs head) Victor Ireland told Kotaku this afternoon. Ireland, responsible for the localisation of wonderful games like the Lunar series, thinks there’s room in the US market for a resurgence of JRPGs.

“There’s tons of great RPG and related content in Japan that just isn’t making it out because it’s just pooh-poohed at unprofitable and written off,” Ireland said. “Fortunately with the Vita getting a huge push and its PSP compatibility, we can transition these unloved ugly ducklings so they can finally be seen as the graceful swans we saw all along.

“We’re looking at titles on all platforms, but there’s a special emphasis on PSP because there’s so many titles stuck in Japan that really need to be enjoyed here. However, even though I can’t give specific titles, know that we have pursued or are closing deals on all major platforms.”

Class of Heroes 2, the sequel to an Atlus-published PSP dungeon crawler (that received rather mediocre reviews), never made it to the US when it was first released back in 2009. Whether or not this Kickstarter is successful, MonkeyPaw says it still plans to release digital versions of Class of Heroes 2 for PSP and its companion, Class of Heroes 2G, for PlayStation 3.

Here are some of the reward tiers that MonkeyPaw and Gaijinworks will make available for this project:

* Custom gold-sealed letters acknowledging pledged hardcore JRPG support from Victor Ireland * Class of Heroes 2 Deluxe Pack for PSP with bronze/silver/gold commemorative pins per tier * Class of Heroes 2 Limited Edition character plush toys * Class of Heroes 2 Poster signed by the entire team * Inclusion in the game’s credits and ability to choose credit placement level with pledge * Class of Heroes 2 Limited Edition Pocket Watch * Class of Heroes 2 Limited Edition custom music box * Grand Tier: All previous tiers and 2-night stay in LA with one hosted day at E3 2012 and dinner with MonkeyPaw Games and Gaijinworks * Two tiers off Kickstarter allow a trip to Japan hosted by MonkeyPaw Games and Gaijinworks to meet the Japanese creators and another that allows fans to be drawn as a character in the game that will ship.

“This Kickstarter really is a test case for this evolved model of digital/physical hybrids direct to fans,” Ireland said. “We’re excited to see it work like we think it will and really amp up the RPG market again to satisfy the fans we know are out there.”


  • I’ve always had a love hate with Working Designs now MonkeyPaw. I love the fact they brought niche RPGs to the PS1. I love the fact they pretty much are responsible for movement to crazy collectors editions in west way back in those PS1 day. I do hate thier overly liberal handling of translations though.

  • Definitely donating to this. Incidentally Atlus just dropped the price of the original one on the US PSN.

  • Why is the genre dead? I need someone to explain this to me. It seems like this all started after Final Fantasy XIII was released, but one game hardly represents a genre.

    • Compare its current state with what it was a decade ago. It’s not so much that it’s dead as it has slowed down considerably and the market for them has decreased while others have increased or seen revivals.
      Both Japanese and western developers tend to list stangnation and too much adherance to formula and handholding as the reason.
      Also part of the problem is that Final Fantasy almost DOES represent the genre, its always been the single most visible game in its field, especially in the west.

  • *Points at Ghostlight Games* JRPGs aren’t exactly unloved but I’m not going to say no to more JRPGs coming our way.

  • Alundra was one of my favourite games on the PS1. And another game called Azure Dreams! Does anyone remember this? Big 52 story tower, you catch monsters and train them. Awesome game!

    Alundra is shamefully better than half the Zelda games we get these days hahaha

    • Azure dreams was amaxing, cept the vibrating penis bike…
      But heres something funny, play that game then watch teh linkin park song “ïn the end” and tell me that song wasnt written about the game..

      Giant tower = check
      Flyig whale monster = check
      No matter how hard you try to level up in the end it doesnt matter cos you lose it all = check

Show more comments

Log in to comment on this story!