Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (2024)

jrpg

Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (1)

Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (2)

By Seth Parmer & Quinton O'Connor

Updated

Thread

Your changes have been saved

Email Is sent

Please verify your email address.

You’ve reached your account maximum for followed topics.

Manage Your List

Follow

Followed

Follow with Notifications

Follow

Unfollow

Link copied to clipboard

Sign in to your TheGamer account
Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (3)

Highlights

  • Nier: Automata offers emotionally draining gameplay and fast-paced combat that's a must-play for JRPG fans.
  • Yakuza 0 nails rich character development and delivers one of the best stories in gaming.
  • Scarlet Nexus is a sleeper hit with ambitious gameplay and a remarkable cast of characters that will hook you.

JRPGs are pretty much a dime a dozen in the realm of gaming. From the basics like the Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest series to the more complex and intricate adventures like Chrono Trigger and Bravely Default, there's something out there for everyone.

Related

15 Best Short JRPGs You Need To Play

In the mood for a JRPG but lack the time needed to play one? Then these short, excellent JRPG experiences are exactly what you need!

The stop-and-go flow of turn-based combat and random encounters can be tedious for some players, but not all games in the genre have these features. In fact, there are a great many JRPGs as action-packed as their Western cousins.

Updated July 1, 2024, by Seth Parmer: It's been quite some time since we've last revisited this list, and since that time, some excellent JRPGs have been released, giving us an excellent reason to insert them into the mix and share even more tremendous JRPGs with you!

Nier: Automata

Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (5)
NieR: Automata
Platform(s)
PS4 , Xbox One , PC , Switch

Released
March 7, 2017
Developer(s)
Platinum Games
Publisher(s)
Square Enix

One of the most emotionally draining titles ever released is Nier: Automata, which may not be a great selling point for some but stick with us.

In terms of gameplay? Nier: Automata has a sleek, fast-paced combat system thanks to the wizards over at Platinum Games, which gave Yoko Taro and company a helping hand. There's truly nothing quite like Nier: Automata, and we sincerely cannot beg enough people to give it a chance. And, if you do happen to dive into it, don't forget the tissues.

Yakuza 0

Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (6)

While some will argue that the Yakuza series, in general, is most certainly not a JRPG, it's always been one at heart. And isn't that what really matters in the end? Semantics aside, Yakuza 0 is one of the best games conceived and wears its JRPG influences on its sleeve.

Related

10 JRPGs Where You Don't Fight God

Despite how awesome, the trope of defeating a God in a JRPG can get a tad stale. Here are some JRPGs that avoid this with more fascinating encounters!

With a killer soundtrack, over-the-top action, and rich character development, Yakuza 0 delivers one of the best stories in any game. Full stop. Brawl with some goons, sing some karaoke and experience the events that started it all in this epic tale.

Ys 8: Lacrimosa Of Dana

Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (8)

Despite there being several installments in the Ys series, it is still a largely overlooked franchise, especially when considering how solid the vast majority of the catalog is. Ys 8: Lacrimosa of Dana is amongst the better titles in the series and delivers an unforgettable journey from start to finish.

Exhilarating combat, fascinating characters, and an engaging plot help cement Lacrimosa of Dana as one of the best JRPGs you can play, even more so now that it has been enhanced on the PlayStation 5 and PC, making the Isle of Seiren come to life and feel buttery smooth as your traverse through it.

The Legend Of Zelda: Tears Of The Kingdom

Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (9)
The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom

Platform(s)
Switch

Released
May 12, 2023

Developer(s)
Nintendo

Publisher(s)
Nintendo

When speaking about the best JRPGs with no trace of turn-based combat, it's hard not to instantly think about The Legend of Zelda series, which some would argue isn't really a JRPG but rather just an Action/Adventure title. And to that, we respectfully disagree. But even if you don't think the shoe fits on this list, it's still a great game!

The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom takes what its groundbreaking predecessor excelled at and somehow makes it even better, all the while polishing up the aspects that were sort of lacking, making it one of the best JRPG experiences you could ever wish for.

Scarlet Nexus

Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (10)
Scarlet Nexus
Platform(s)
PS4 , PS5 , Xbox One , Xbox Series X , Xbox Series S , PC

Released
June 25, 2021
Developer(s)
Bandai Namco Entertainment
Publisher(s)
Bandai Namco Entertainment

Scarlet Nexus, simply put, is one of the genre's biggest sleeper hits that deserves a shot. While the game's story is quite ambitious, the gameplay manages to be somehow even more ambitious and is genuinely all killer, no filler in its execution.

Flashy, fun, deep, and rewarding, Scarlet Nexus is a heck of a game. The cast of characters present in Scarlet Nexus is remarkable and will have you falling for them before the credits roll.

Souls Series

Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (11)

It's probably not the first series that comes to mind when one hears the term JRPG, but the Souls series is indeed one of the most played titles in the genre. That being said, it's definitely not for everyone and is often overlooked as a "true JRPG" due to it being heavily inspired by western fantasy.

Related

Best JRPG Start Screens

There's nothing better than being welcomed to a JRPG with an outstanding start screen, as these games show.

Even with that said, the Souls titles are still JRPGs in the grand scheme of things and are pretty dang good ones, all things considered. While it may be a grueling, unforgiving experience for anyone who plays them for the first time, they are genuinely one of the most rewarding games out there.

Elden Ring

Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (13)
Elden Ring
Platform(s)
PS5 , Xbox One , PS4 , Xbox Series X , Xbox Series S , PC

Released
February 25, 2022

Developer(s)
From Software
Publisher(s)
Bandai Namco Entertainment , From Software

Yes, we know the 'Souls Series' is literally directly above this entry, but Elden Ring is on an entirely different level at this rate that we felt it needed its own section. Even more so now, considering its first expansion, Shadow of the Erdtree, is just as captivating and rewarding as the base game was.

Elden Ring is one of the best open-world JRPGs you can get your hands on and has the level of quality and challenge you'd expect from a FromSoftware title, making it all the more rewarding when you finally take down a boss you've been stuck on for hours on end!

Neo: The World Ends With You

Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (14)

The World Ends With You is a series with unmatched style and storytelling, but it is also a series that is criminally underrated and deserves a much broader audience than it currently has.

However, fans were fortunate to receive a sequel to The World Ends With You fourteen years later with Neo: The World Ends With You, an excellent continuation of the world and fascinating premise of the original with an updated combat system that makes it a must-play for any Action JRPG fan looking for snappy and fun combat and an emotional powerhouse of a story.

Final Fantasy 16

Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (15)
Final Fantasy 16
Platform(s)
PS5

Released
June 22, 2023
Developer(s)
Square Enix
Publisher(s)
Square Enix

Final Fantasy 16 had tremendous amounts of pressure placed on its shoulders due to its predecessor being one of the most polarizing installments in the series and the developer being the team behind the critically acclaimed MMORPG Final Fantasy 14.

Fortunately, Creative Business Unit III knocked yet another title out of the park, bringing one of the best combat systems alive and an engaging and emotional story filled with remarkable characters, music, and locations. Final Fantasy 16 may not be what some wanted, but it's unquestionable that the team nailed what they set out to do!

Monster Hunter Series

Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (16)

Though it might be slightly grindy, the Monster Hunter series is far from the typical adventure associated with the JRPG genre. You will be tasked tracking down monsters of epic proportions to get better weapons and armor, which can look phenomenal when all is said and done.

Related

9 Best Opening Sequences In JRPGs

These JRPGs hook you right from the opening scene.

There's always a unique charm that comes along with any Monster Hunter title, even if it does feature towering monsters looking to make you its evening snack.

Dragon's Dogma

Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (18)
Dragon's Dogma
Platform(s)
PS3 , Xbox 360

Released
May 22, 2012
Developer(s)
Capcom
Publisher(s)
Capcom

Why not give Capcom's Dragon's Dogma a shot if Dark Souls was too brutal? Similar to Dark Souls, the game draws a lot of inspiration from western fantasy, bringing to mind the works of Tolkien or classic mythology. Although Dragon's Dogma won't be for everyone, much like with Souls titles, we still urge anyone even remotely curious to give it a shot.

In this action-packed epic, players can explore a mythic kingdom, battle giant monsters, and take up arms against an evil dragon. It might not be as deep as something like Final Fantasy, but it's quite the adventure nonetheless.

Dragon's Dogma 2

Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (19)
Dragon's Dogma 2
Platform(s)
PC , PS5 , Xbox Series X , Xbox Series S

Released
March 22, 2024
Developer(s)
Capcom
Publisher(s)
Capcom

Much like its predecessor listed above, Dragon's Dogma 2 offers lots for you to see and do but holds the guidance and 'hand-holding' part that can bog down most open-world titles. And the result of doing this is it offers a unique world that's worth exploring, making every discovery feel rewarding and unique.

Stumbling upon a random cave or an enormous monster always feels exciting, and hiring Pawns to help do your dirty work for you never felt better. While the first installment of the series was great, Dragon's Dogma 2 feels much more complete and fleshed-out, making it a must-play for anyone looking for a robust fantasy adventure!

Final Fantasy 7 Remake

Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (20)
Final Fantasy VII Remake

Platform(s)

Released
April 10, 2020

Developer(s)

Publisher(s)

Final Fantasy 7 is perhaps still the best turn-based JRPG out there, which seems fitting that Final Fantasy 7 Remake happens to be one of the best Action JRPGs out there, making it a must-play for fans of the series, genre, or universe of Final Fantasy 7.

Seeing Cloud's adventure unfold with gorgeous visuals and a level of love, care, and attention from the developers that exceeds expectations is a dream come true for many.

Related

8 Best Falcom RPGs

From Ys to The Legend of Heroes, these are the best Falcom RPGs.

The combat system is deep, rewarding, and explosive while oddly remaining true to the game's Active Time Battle (ATB) twist on turn-based combat to deliver an exhilarating real-time action-focused system.

Final Fantasy 7 Rebirth

Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (22)
Final Fantasy 7 Rebirth
Platform(s)
PlayStation 5

Released
February 29, 2024
Developer(s)
Square Enix
Publisher(s)
Square Enix

Final Fantasy 7 Rebirth takes everything that makes Remake a winner and dials it up to 11, with unforgettable character writing, an expanded battle system, and a vast world to get lost in. If you were still worried about how the rest of the trilogy would be handled after experiencing Remake, Rebirth should have washed all remaining doubt away.

We also don't know how they did it, but they already took one of the best combat systems and made it even better across the board, giving us many ways to approach each situation with new Materia, Team Synergies, and much more. We can only imagine what part three is going to look like!

Tales Of Arise

Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (23)
Tales of Arise
Platform(s)
PC , PS4 , PS5 , Xbox One , Xbox Series X , Xbox Series S

Released
September 10, 2021

Developer(s)
Bandai Namco Studios

Publisher(s)
Bandai Namco Studios

One of 2021's best JRPGs belongs to the emotional adventure found in Tales of Arise. Not only does Tales of Arise feature a stunning art direction, a genuinely lovable cast of characters, and an engaging story, but it may hold one of the best modern combat systems of all time.

Combining and chaining together Artes to deliver relentless attack combos while taking in the flashy, stylized combat effects is just one reason you should give Tales of Arise a chance.

Granblue Fantasy: Relink

Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (24)
Granblue Fantasy: Relink
Platform(s)
PC , PS4 , PS5

Released
February 1, 2024

Developer(s)
Cygames

Publisher(s)
Cygames

With an oddly similar combat system to Tales of Arise, Granblue Fantasy: Relink may very well be the most surprising JRPG of the year, giving us a solid story and a large world that's worth exploring, along with a robust combat system and party system that makes trying every character worthwhile.

If you have yet to sink your teeth into Granblue Fantasy: Relink, we cannot recommend it enough, especially if you've played and enjoyed Tales of Arise. While it is very different in many ways, there are also lots of similarities that will help make you feel right at home when you kick your adventure off!

Xenoblade Chronicles 3

Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (25)
Xenoblade Chronicles 3

Platform(s)
Switch

Released
July 29, 2022

Developer(s)
Monolith

Publisher(s)
Nintendo

For years, the Xenoblade Chronicles series has been praised for its deep combat, expansive worlds, fascinating characters, and strong narratives. Xenogears is a classic for a reason, and the Xenosaga trilogy surely has its fans, but with Xenoblade Chronicles, this talented team of developers finally got the recognition their effort deserves.

Related

10 JRPGs With The Best Alternate Costumes

Every JRPG has to have a bit of style.

They're all worth playing, but we'll focus on the most recent entry. Xenoblade Chronicles 3 has one of the best combat systems in any recent Action JRPG, and that's not an exaggeration.

The way you can mix and match skills and take some over from one Mastered Class to a new one opens the door for creativity and experimentation in a way that feels natural and rewarding.

Final Fantasy 14

Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (27)
Final Fantasy 14
Platform(s)
PC , PS3 , PS4 , PS5 , Xbox Series X , Xbox Series S

Released
August 27, 2013
Developer(s)
Square Enix
Publisher(s)
Square Enix

Perhaps this is considered cheating to some, but any chance we get to talk about Final Fantasy 14, we'll take it. While an MMORPG, the laser focus on the story, characters, and the world more than qualifies it for this category, especially considering many will experience this game primarily as a single-player game until they are required to party up for a dungeon or boss fight.

In many ways, Final Fantasy 14 is the dream experience for any hardcore fan of the series and any newcomer to the series and genre. It's a perfect blend of everything you need to get started and will slowly take over your entire existence. Have fun!

Kingdom Hearts Series

Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (28)

Quite possibly the most-played JRPG among American audiences, Kingdom Hearts is what happens when Disney's magic meets Final Fantasy's lore. The result is an epic adventure that has spanned over the course of nine core titles.

As strange as it may seem to see characters like Mickey, Donald, and Goofy joining forces with spiky-haired protagonists like Sora, Cloud, and Squal, the result is actually a match made in heaven, or more accurately, Japan.

Atelier Ryza 3: Alchemist Of The End & The Secret Key

Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (29)

has a fantastic world with wonderful characters, following an emotional and satisfying story, making it check all the boxes for JRPG fans.

Your party is enormous in this game, and the combat system is extensive and rewarding, which is arguably Gust's finest work as yet and is a must-play for fans of the series or genre!

Next

JRPGs For Beginners

JRPGs include some of the most beloved titles in all video game history. These are the best JRPGs for newcomers to the genre.

  • Triple-A Games
  • jrpg
  • Dark Souls

Your changes have been saved

Email Is sent

Please verify your email address.

You’ve reached your account maximum for followed topics.

Manage Your List

Follow

Followed

Follow with Notifications

Follow

Unfollow

Great JRPGs Without Turn-Based Combat (2024)

References

Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Mr. See Jast

Last Updated:

Views: 6571

Rating: 4.4 / 5 (55 voted)

Reviews: 94% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Mr. See Jast

Birthday: 1999-07-30

Address: 8409 Megan Mountain, New Mathew, MT 44997-8193

Phone: +5023589614038

Job: Chief Executive

Hobby: Leather crafting, Flag Football, Candle making, Flying, Poi, Gunsmithing, Swimming

Introduction: My name is Mr. See Jast, I am a open, jolly, gorgeous, courageous, inexpensive, friendly, homely person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.