In my younger days, I would only stick to platformers and pretty much that was it. I didn’t get into JRPG’s, Beat em ups, fighters, and many other genres until the 16-bit generation. My safety net was Megaman, Mario, Rescue Rangers, and Contra (it had platforming in it, okay?) I would dabble into some other titles and learn them from time to time. I was drawn in as my skill began to grow. I would perfect somethings here and there and when I thought I mastered enough, I would go into other titles that offered a bit more.
I became a huge JRPG player during my SNES run. Yes, my brother had a Sega Genesis and I also had a Turbographix-16 and Gameboy systems. I would gravitate more to the Link To The Past and Secret Of Mana JRPG’s. Considered to be Action/Adventure, they filled me with joy when I grind in those games. I played Final Fantasy III on SNES and had a ball. Learning the mechanics and never, still to this day, getting over the fact I can suplex a ghost train.
Once PlayStation 1 enter my realm, more gaming opportunities open.
Then a small company called Atlus entered my life. What was this Shin Megami Tensai game called “Persona”. Demons? High school characters? It was such an unexpected world I stepped into.
You’ll never know what works for you until you try it. That’s a simple answer most of us deliver to you. It’s to the point and depending on how convincing it comes across, it may be true or not. There isn’t a direct starting point at times for a series or genre. You can come across things accidentally. You can come into it due to budget and related taste.
The way to see if something is for you is being open and willing. Games you tend to stay away from are mostly the one that might grab you. Making the decision or setting too high of expectation that may never be met, shows how you came to the conclusion that you force to have. Final Fantasy is a prime example. If you want something modern, look at Monster Hunter. A series that was popular in Japan and had a small base here in America. It sold huge on the 3DS and brought players, familiar and new to the series with Monster Hunter World.
Fire Emblem was in the same boat and look how the fanbase grew from there. It stayed in Japan for years and when it came to America, it wasn’t explosive but it was one of Nintendo’s niche titles that not all of us notice til Awakening. It had some of us go back and play the older and challenging games. Fire Emblem Path Of Radiance should’ve scared off many but it didn’t. The fans of this game stuck with it.
Even Persona and a lot of Atlus titles got people into another style of RPG’s. Since most gamers of now and few in the past missed Phantasy Star, some of Atlus dungeon crawling and traditional JRPG’s, resemble some of PS designs. Once Persona 3 came, (Shin) Megami Tensei begin to have traction. It was the next evolution of Role Playing Games for some. Others, it was too anime for them and offbeat.
In niche gaming, you come to find treasures here and there. You can also find trash that people still are attracted to. Yep, even failures can be champions. Earth Defense Force or EDF games, where you fight bugs throughout the campaign, has some unpolished mechanics and design. It supposes to be laughable and just stupid fun. Ride To Hell Retribution may be a perfect example. You will have to search for that one yourself.
Earthbound was notorious for this. Now that its available in many ways, people can see why so many love it or why some don’t get it. A cool and modern setting. Challenging in its fights. A crazy premise and a cast that is famous for Smash than the original game they came from.
Adventure games like Hotel Dusk 213 help me get into the genre. Playing that was something I would never think would grab me. It’s the narrative that drew me in and solving crimes has inspired to look for more crime-ridden titles. It helps me get into Phoenix Wright. That led to Taletell series of adventure games before there departure from the gaming industry.
These games are just a few many have known about but wouldn’t give a chance. The ones who have played them has become a fan or seen it for what it is and moved on. Yet, at some point, you get to see why that title has its pros and cons for many to see it dear to them. They took a chance on it and watch it slowly grow or was aware. Look at Sonic for example. From its debut to modern games, it still has a fan base that some would question.
So search for some titles that have a chance to thrive in your library. You don’t have to stick with the familiar and with indies being a huge contribution now to the gaming market, you can find styles and genres that may fit you.
By the way, try Spec Ops The Line over Ride To Hell. You’ll thank a lot of us later.