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Japanese Game Development

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Japanese game development

Japanese game development has always gone hand in hand with the PC market. Originally popularized by arcade games (of which several found home on PCs), Japanese companies soon began developing console titles followed by PC releases of these same games. Some years later, Japan’s role-playing game (JRPG) genre became quite popular here in the West, where it saw multiple ports on platforms like DOS and Windows 95. This latter transition was so successful that some people even credit JRPGs for greatly expanding the PC audience during this time period. Why? It could be attributed to two reasons: 1) RPGs were very long and deep, making them attractive to gamers who wanted something more than just a short video game experience; 2) The rise of anime and manga also strongly influenced the popularity of JRPGs, which were largely based on these very same topics. The next logical step was to translate Japanese games to English, and it became a great boon for Western gamers who wanted something more from their PC experiences. In fact, many Western PC titles today are often heavily inspired by Japanese games (NightSky is one such example).

In addition to RPGs, Japanese games have been popular in all categories ranging from puzzle games (Chew Man Fu) to platformers (Castlevania). Although they never really got as much fame as they deserved here in the West (except maybe Space Invaders), certain video game genres like dating sims or bishōjo games were long before visual novels like Phoenix Wright or Snatcher. These titles have been largely ignored by the masses, even though their stories were very compelling and deep – mainstream media never helped them either, as most reviews just bashed on their gameplay elements (if they mentioned them at all). For a long time, it seems like Western gamers didn’t want to play Japanese games on PCs, but eventually, some people realized that these types of games had more to offer than what was initially expected.

Today there’s a whole new generation of video game players (both here in the West and worldwide) who are looking for something different from modern games. As such, we’re witnessing an interesting trend where Japanese PC games are coming back for another round with English localization teams responsible for making sure they’re available to everyone worldwide. It’s interesting to see how some of these games are becoming popular mostly for their gameplay elements, while their stories or characters remain rather obscure – perhaps not as much as before, but it feels like they’ve become more of an afterthought than ever before.

And that’s just the way things go now: Japanese game development companies target both sides now (East and West) when creating new titles – they want them to sell everywhere on every platform instead of just in Japan. As such, you’re probably wondering which Japanese games are best to play on PC. Well if so, here is a list with all our recommendations!

Keep in mind that even though there is no official translation available for some of these titles, they were still properly localized and they offer English menus and text. As such, we’ve decided to keep them on this list instead of leaving them out just because no one bothered to translate them fully.

Please note that most of these games come from companies/developers who also have console versions available – so don’t expect the PC versions to be drastically different than what you’d get on a PlayStation 3 or Xbox 360 (maybe with slightly better graphics, but not much else). We tried to recommend titles based purely on their gameplay and story elements; however, we do also take into account other things like visuals, audio and localization. Just remember: all of these titles are worth playing!

Salman Ahmad is a seasoned writer for CTN News, bringing a wealth of experience and expertise to the platform. With a knack for concise yet impactful storytelling, he crafts articles that captivate readers and provide valuable insights. Ahmad's writing style strikes a balance between casual and professional, making complex topics accessible without compromising depth.

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