Japanese TRPGs.

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JTRPGS, or Japanese Traditional Role Playing Games, is what I'm currently on about.

Arguably, with all the hubbub and chaos about most TRPGs now-a-days (D&D being one of the reasons). I've found a new focus on examining various Japanese make TRPGs.

I made a post on the series discussion for Quick Start!! thread about some various TRPGs that were featured in that series.

NOW THEN, only the real show.
a few (ok, many) examples.

MAID RPG
From the mind of Ryo Kamiya, this game can be pretty much summed up with general "LOLRANDOM" shenanigens and harem / maid antics. Play as Maids (and Butlers) as you help Be-eth fighting demons from another world or cheering your your master at a skate park by shredding the half pipe.
And for some reason, it's fully compatible with Dark Heresy so... ...there's that.
You can buy the game Here.


Golden Sky Stories
From the mind of Ryo Kamiya. Explore a cozy little town in the Japanese countryside. You play as a Henge, an animal that is able to take a humanoid form in order to help people in this little town. This is not a game about fighting, but a game about bonds and friendship with the town's populace. It has the same kind of vibes as Neko Musume Michikusa Nikki, if it interests ye.
You can buy the game Here.


Dracurouge
ALAS, CONSTRUCTED, DESIGNED, BIRTHED FROM THE ENIGMATIC MIND OF RYO KAMIYA, LIES WITHIN, A LAND OF NAUGHT A SUN AND A CRIMSON MOON. YE TAKE ON THE ROLE OF A KNIGHT, A GUARDIAN OF THE WORLD. MAKE YOUR CHOICES BE HEARD, AS YOU SEEK TO SOLVE CONFLICTS EITHER BY WILLING YOUR HUMANITY UPON THOU FOE'S WILL, OR BY THYSELF, GIVING IN TO THE INQUENCHABLE THIRST FOR BLOODSHED AND STRIFE. ALAS, A GRAND THEATRE AWAITS YOU IN THIS GAME OF ROLES.
(In short, you play as vampire knights and you sound like Castlevania characters.)
FOR THOSE THAT SEEK SUCH A FORM OF ENTERTAINMENT, IT IS HERE THAT YOU SHALL FIND.


Nechronica
The Long Long Sequel.
In a land of the dead, where life seems to be to be an afterthought.
You play as Dolls, girls whom have given wills, and a goal to see their lost memories and find reason in this world of madness. Featuring a very tactical battle system and a very descriptive way of how combat is described. This game is considered a favorite on /tg/.
You may find translations here.


Ryuutama
a Natural Fantasy Role Play game.
oft considered "Hayao Miyazaki's Oregon Trail" This game is a game about the journey. Simplified play, fun combat (if you will it), and even a boon for even the most novice game masters. Truely, a comfy game for those who wish to play TRPGs.
You can buy the game here.


Summon Skate
A game where you investigate disturbances and fight against the demons you're investigating... ...by skating.
It's Devil Summoner with Skates!
It's also technically a board game if it's all considered.
You can buy the game here.


Floria: The Verdant Way
You play as a Floria, a nature wizard as you travels the vast world-sized forest in search of herbs, and then fight against the disturbances to the forest using the power of these herbs.
Also similar to Summon Skate as it plays more like a board game.
You can buy the game here.


Shinobigami
Ever wonder if you could play something like a TRPG version of Under Ninja (or Senran Kagura) and have your characters duke it out at the speed of sound? This is the game for you. Bit of caution, you may need a heavy investment in the game for maximum enjoyment.
You can buy the game here.


Kamigakari: God Hunters
Play a trained exorcist that seek to quell entities of negativity before they become evil gods.
This game is often considered an entry point to JTRPGs from other systems such as 5e or Pathfinder.
Now as much as I should suggest you buy the game, the issue is that the current publisher well... ...has Issues... So this is where I would suggest you pirate the game if given the opportunity, and fan translators have been working hard on translating the supplements.


Goblin Slayer TRPG
Now YOU can roll the dice!
The official TRPG book for Goblin Slayer. Play as adventurers and solve the kindof quests the titular Goblin Slayer opts not to do. The game has rules that can be splash into pretty much any other setting you wish, and the game also doubles as a sourcebook for the world of Goblin Slayer too, if that interests you.
You can look up where to buy the book here, and other major retailers.


Konosuba TRPG
This game is really a novelty. Game is honestly kindof dull, but if you want some silly isekai shenanigans, I'm not stopping you. It's ruleset is as close as you can get to Arianrhod being translated over here.
You can look up where to buy the game here and from other major retailers.


Armed Girl RPG Princess Wing
Ever wanted to be a magical girl... ...with a Pile Bunker?
Well now you can with this very special TRPG!
Enrole as a student at Fairy Tale Academy, use the power of Precious to activate the Dress Codes and transform! Then fight off the negative emotion powered mechanical monsters known as Voids!
The game uses Playing Cards to play, and a chessboard. Along with many character sheets.
You can grab the core game here, translated by a fine translator. Along with the supplement here!


Touhou Unofficial TRPG Gensou Narratograph
It's Touhou, as a TRPG, also kindof a board game.
Ye can grab it here.


So yeah, let's converse 'bout 'em!

Disclaimer: Games without buy links are unofficial translations and are pretty much equivalent to Scanlations on this site, download at your own risk.
 
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I've tried a few Japanese Tabletop systems, but I've yet to find one that plays particularly well. They tend to be very strong in setting, but very difficult to translate into an actual, practical game with friends, and clunky mechanics-wise to boot. Mind you, there's still many I haven't given a proper shot at. Kamigakari sounds up my alley concept-wise

"Cozy" systems like Golden Sky Stories are the worst offenders. Very nice manuals and pretty much a Neko Musume Michikusa Nikki chapter generator. But put it in front of a group of players, even hardcore Japanophiles willing to not derail everything, and it's easy for sessions to become very aimless. It's very hard to force the cozy atmosphere typical of these settings, especially collaboratively.

I think it's more an issue with their mechanics rather than the concepts, but either way often very difficult to run properly.

My favorite Japanese system for now is Nechronica. I like the whole body horror level-up system where you replace and graft enemy/friends' body parts onto your undead, barely sane battle-doll. Always fun when sessions devolve into players digging through a location for things to stick onto their missing arm stump.
 
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Would have mentioned Nechronica earlier but well... Reasons.
And yeah, even I like Nechronica.
 
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The only one I'm vaguely familiar with - and this will date me - is Big Eyes Small Mouth, specifically the d20 version from '03 or so. The mid-'00's group I was in tried it at one point, in between one of our semi-annual shifts between D&D 3.5 and d20 Modern. I don't remember it as being particularly noteworthy. Like all TTRPGs, much of the experience depends on the GM/DM.
 
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The only one I'm vaguely familiar with - and this will date me - is Big Eyes Small Mouth, specifically the d20 version from '03 or so.
Forget showing your age, that's a proper grognard flex more than anything. Niche d20 systems and early 2000s "How To Draw Anime" aesthetics are a match made in heaven, if what I'm finding online about it is any indication.
PI5alYd.png
 
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The only one I'm vaguely familiar with - and this will date me - is Big Eyes Small Mouth.
um... BESM isn't actually a JTRPG, it's Canadian.

i want to gent into rpgs but idk where to start:meguuusad:
I would suggest Ryuutama, If you got a full set of D&D dice running about.
I can also suggest Sword World 2.X as I'm kinda biased like that, along with Kamigakari, as they both run a 2d6 system.
 
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Fair enough - apologies for inadvertently thread-crapping.
It's a common misconception that if it's japan or anime as a topic, it might be a JTRPG, you ought to check the developer of the game first beforehand.

In the next couple of weeks or so, I'll update the OP in the line of the post I linked to, along with that post as well.
 
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I think Sword Wold is a good contender to replace DnD entirely if it has the same amount of marketing as DnD.
 
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Maid RPG is the best Japanese TTRPG ever made, easy to learn and with infinite options. The amount of randomness is decided before starting the game, you can make it 100% random (it requires experienced individuals) or story-driven. It got buried by other TTRPGs made for casual people so you'll rarely get a chance to play it, since maid knowledge is not common knowledge and absurd humour is not for everyone. Maybe if you take a time machine 15 years back you'd enjoy it.
 
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Well, it summarises something that is commonly known, that D&D has been seen warped through Records of the Loddoss Wars for decades. I saw the starter kit they did for Japan and it hooked more otakus than Japanese people, at least at first. But for all those series mentioned in the article and more, anything RPG like is a copy of a copy, as the authors don't go to the source and just repeat the same kinks. The same could be said about chest or other Western popular tabletop games when they portray it in series, either if they're focused on games or not. A shame the 80s Japanese intellectual society is not longer with us.
 
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Did an update to the OP, adding it to the scale of the Quick Start!! post.

Also in said post, I added a little extra to it if it interests ye.
 
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Well, it's more ordered now and I see Touhou, so I need to see what did they cook.
 
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How much luck have any of you had running these systems online? Is there a particular one you've been trying to wrangle a group for but have had no luck?

Online play with randos has always been a bit of a logistical nightmare for me to keep a game going for more than a couple sessions, even when your players are (relatively) benign and your schedules miraculously line up.

I'd be up for trying to run/play a short oneshot if there's interest, even if it's just Play by Post (PbP) in the forums. I think MAID's the most suited for that casual sort of play, but I'd honestly be up for giving most of these a try.
 
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If it helps, most JTRPGs are designed to be played mostly in a single session, so playing for short bursts is a thing.
 
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After a look nowadays Japanese TTRPGs are dreadfully bad written, I already knew about Konosuba and some more but Touhou is literally cosplaying... I mean, almost a hundred pages of replay and the rest is about how to do the same? Well, at least they're not bragging as in the Konosuba one. No matter how many I read, they're just an imitation. I prefer to take Maid RPG as a base and make whatever changes for running a different game instead of choosing any of the other rulebooks. That and Golden Sky Stories. No personal offence, it's just I don't understand how publishers invest money in these things unless they're already sold before printing them.
 
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Well, it's also partially due to how the general audience is. Sure, MAID and others can work over here as marketable because it fits with the "Weeb" audience while others well... ...here's a video about someone going on about JTRPGs in japan and them over here.
 
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I played Stellar Knights once with some friends, it's pretty neat shippy mechanic (if you're into between-PC relationships I'd suggest this) but we got hindered with lack of TL for supplementary books. Heck the TL we had for the corebook is also a weak unchecked MTL. I was invited to play Sworld 2.0 at one point but my real life happened

Hm. When we talk about Japanese TRPG scene honestly one of the biggest one there is probably CoC6 which... isn't even originated from Japan :pepehmm:

Also if anyone's up for gaming whatever the game is feel free to hit me up heehee (my friends aren't dice nerds unfortunately)
 

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