Japanese doesn 't necessery means action or strategy but japanese
it is not a GENRE
JRPGS and WRPGS have nothing to do with genres like Action to Shooters
Classifying games based solely on the country of origin is a bit ridiculous. Why isn't there separation for other genres then? JPlatformers from WPlatformers? JAction-Adventure from WAction-Adventure?
There are inherent differences between a JRPG and a WRPG, differences from story-telling, character development, battle system, story setting, etc, etc. That's what makes them different SUBgenres
No one saw my previous post =( at the bottom of page 2, but I want to ask you this then:
What are the differences, in exact definitions, between JRPG and WRPG? Why do we have these sub-genres that aren't very clearly or easily understood by many, when we have other genres that are very intuitive. Why even have these counter-intuitive sub-genres?
Edit: I mean "exact definitions" as in you mention there are differences, but what are they?
Far as I can figure wRPG and jRPG are two distinctions that are separate from the disctinctions of battle system: Action RPG, Turn Based RPG, and Strategy RPG.
jRPGs are defined by a linear story with little to know choice within while wRPGs are all about choice and dialog decisions and making your own character. Sometimes a game lik Demon's Souls will take one aspect from wRPG like the character creation, but overall I would still call it a jRPG because of the lack of dialog choices and the story only having a couple of meaningful decisions.
Separating things by battle system is much simpler, but sadly that is not the norm. By the way, if how close a game is to FF defines it as a jRPG why are games like Kingdom Hearts which have a completely different action based battle system put under the jRPG mantle. Seems like someone would be just as dissapointed in a Kingdom Hearts as they would Valkyria Chronicles if they really wanted something like an FF.
But those aren't adding anything to the classification of a game. I could call Halo a Real-time FPS, and people would be like "why would you even say real-time?". I get the same feeling from that sort of JRPG/WRPG definition. Fallout 3, open-world (or sandbox) action-RPG with shooter elements, or just call it WRPG? But then what about Mass Effect 2, that's not open world, very linear, lots of dialogue choices yes, but very little actual effect on the outcome (most of the time), but that's still a WRPG, but VERY different from Fallout 3.
I'm not saying that's bad, but it's confusing to plenty of people. Like you said, if you call Kingdom Hearts a JRPG, someone expecting FF will be disappointed. If I tell you a game is an action-platformer (Uncharted), you have a pretty good idea of what to expect, but with JRPG and WRPG, it's a little more nebulous. It's not a very clear genre, and there are people who don't think of it as a genre, just a geographical marker so to speak.
Genres exist to easily classify something to someone who's never encountered it before so they can decide if they want to check it out. "You hear that new band?" "No, what kind of stuff do they play?" "Indie-electronic Rock" "Oh I love that stuff! I'll go check it out". With these classifications, you have to compare a game, which takes away the whole reason for genres. "What's game X like?" "Well it's a JRPG" "What kind of JRPG?" "Kind of like Kingdom Hearts but different in ways A and B". Why not just say it's a linear action-rpg? Or for VC, turn-based tactical rpg shooter? JRPG and WRPG fail as classifications to define the main mechanics of the game.
Lastly, it's completely counter-intuitive. Calling Demon's Souls a WRPG may fit according to the definitions of the genre, but people will always say and think "but it was made in Japan, it wasn't made in the west". Why spread this confusion by using these inadequate genre labels?