The Meaning of JRPG: What It Is and How To Use It

Do you know the definition of JRPG? This article will provide you with all of the information you need on the abbreviation JRPG, including its definition, usage, and more!

Your writing, at its best

Compose bold, clear, mistake-free, writing with Grammarly's AI-powered writing assistant

What does the acronym JRPG stand for?

According to Geek to Geek Media, the term JRPG stands for Japanese role-playing game. Japanese role-playing games are video games that were made in Japan, have anime or manga style character designs, RPG elements, a fantasy setting, or games that are inspired or influenced by this JRPG style. Techopedia states that a role-playing game will have five basic elements. First, The player will have the ability to improve their character over the course of the game by increasing their statistics or levels. Second, the game will have a menu based combat system and several choices of spells, skills, or active powers as well as an inventory system that allows the character to use wearable equipment such as armors and weapons. See, there is a central Quest that runs through the game as a storyline. There will usually be optional side quests that a player cannot watch to complete or not. Next, there will be the ability to interact with elements in the environment or storyline through the additional abilities at the character games. This could include lock-picking, disarming traps, communicating with NPCs in random encounters, and more. Finally, there will be character classes that define the skills, characteristics, and abilities of the character. Often, the gameplay results in fighting dragons and other monsters, like many classic fantasy games on a dragon quest. The character styles of a Western RPG (WRPG) will differ from a Japanese RPG PC games, but they can still have many of the same elements like wizardry, traits, legends, and mechanics.  

There are also a couple of different other styles of computer RPGs within the genre. These include action RPGs, strategy RPGs, tactical RPG, dungeon crawler games, and adventure RPGs, as well as MMORPGs. Examples of action RPGs include the Diablo, Zelda, and Dark Souls franchises. Strategy RPGs include Neverwinter and Final Fantasy VII, and RPG adventure games include things like Metroid or Castlevania. MMORPGs include World of Warcraft and others like this. Nintendo is a Japanese company that produces game systems like the SNEs and other consoles comparable to the Playstation and PS1, and also have created RPGs like Zelda. Other RPD games include Secret of Mana, Mass Effect, Elder Scrolls, the Persona Series, Dragon Age, and more. 

According to The Free Dictionary, the acronym JRPG can stand for a couple of different things besides Japanese role-playing game. While these definitions are still valid, they are far less common, and should therefore be used sparingly. If you do decide to use one of these alternate definitions, make sure that you provide the reader with proper context so that they can decipher the meaning you intend. 

  •  Java Runtime Products Group (BEA Systems)
  •  Joint Radar Planning Group

What are examples of JRPGs?

There are many different JRPGs that are entertaining and fun to play. While there are hundreds if not thousands of JRPG games out there, IMDb has compiled a list of the top 50 best JRPGs of all time. These are listed below, alongside their release date. 

  •  Chrono Trigger (1995)
  •  Final Fantasy VI (1994)
  •  Final Fantasy IX (2000 Video Game)
  •  Persona 5 (2016 Video Game) 
  •  Final Fantasy VII (1997 Video Game)
  •  Panzer Dragoon Saga (1998 Video Game)
  •  Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4 (2008 Video Game)
  •  Chrono Cross (1999 Video Game)
  •  Vagrant Story (2000 Video Game) 
  •  Xenoblade Chronicles (2010 Video Game) 
  •  Final Fantasy X (2001 Video Game)
  •  Pokémon Silver Version (1999 Video Game)
  •  Mario & Luigi: Bowser’s Inside Story (2009 Video Game)
  •  Xenogears (1998 Video Game)
  •  Final Fantasy XII (2006 Video Game)
  •  Lunar: Eternal Blue (1994 Video Game)
  •  Skies of Arcadia (2000 Video Game)
  •  Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga (2003 Video Game)
  •  Dragon Quest VIII: Journey of the Cursed King (2004 Video Game)
  •  Trials of Mana (1995 Video Game)
  •  Phantasy Star Online (2000 Video Game)
  •  Final Fantasy VIII (1999 Video Game)
  •  Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars (1996 Video Game)
  •  Golden Sun (2001 Video Game)
  •  Paper Mario (2000 Video Game)
  •  Grandia II (2000 Video Game)
  •  Dark Cloud 2 (2002 Video Game)
  •  Lunar: The Silver Star (1992 Video Game)
  •  Pokémon Blue Version (1996 Video Game)
  •  EarthBound (1994 Video Game)
  •  Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door (2004 Video Game)
  •  Dragon Quest IX: Sentinels of the Starry Skies (2009 Video Game)
  •  Pokémon Sun (2016 Video Game)
  •  Pokémon Y (2013 Video Game)
  •  Kingdom Hearts II (2005 Video Game)
  •  Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 3 (2006 Video Game)
  •  Secret of Mana (1993 Video Game)
  •  Phantasy Star IV: The End of the Millennium (1993 Video Game)
  •  Final Fantasy IV (1991 Video Game)
  •  Ni no Kuni II: Revenant Kingdom (2018 Video Game)
  •  Kingdom Hearts (2002 Video Game)
  •  Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch (2011 Video Game)
  •  Shadow Hearts: Covenant (2004 Video Game)
  •  Grandia (1997 Video Game)
  •  Final Fantasy XIII (2009 Video Game)
  •  Xenoblade Chronicles 2 (2017 Video Game)
  •  Final Fantasy XV (2016 Video Game)
  •  Lost Odyssey (2007 Video Game)
  •  Front Mission: Gun Hazard (1996 Video Game)
  •  Kingdom Hearts III (2019 Video Game)

Overall, the acronym JRPG Stands for Japanese role-playing game. This is used to refer to a style of role-playing game that features Japanese elements, was made in Japan, or was heavily inspired by the Japanese style. Role playing games follow A set standard of elements, and often follow a similar plot or trajectory within the plot. There are many different Japanese role-playing games that are popular. Try playing one of these games today! You can choose from the above list. 


  1. JRPG – What does JRPG stand for? | The Free Dictionary 
  2. What is a JRPG? And Does It Matter? | Geek to Geek Media 
  3. What is a Role-Playing Game (RPG)? |Techopedia 
  4. Top 50 Best JRPGs of All Time | IMDb