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Paperboy_J said:

I just recently finished Little Town Hero, so I'll go with that for my pick. I believe reviews for this game were mixed, but I love it. The whole time playing all I was thinking was, "FInally an RPG where you actually have to think." You can't just spam the attack button or just use your most powerful spell to plow through everything.

That's my problem with a lot of JRPGs and why I stopped playing them. RPGs are supposed to be about strategy, but invariably they almost always come down to brute strength, level grinding until you're strong enough to plow through everything in your path without a single thought.

RPGs are not really supposed to be strategic unless of course we are ranking about Strategic RGPs, but anyway I have some recommendations of JRPGS that you have think to avoid being crushed Shin Megami Tensei, Fire Emblem and Triangle Strategy comes to mind. All them solve grinding issues with different solutions and all them force you to understand what type of enemies you are facing and play accordingly 

None of them have random encounters either and you don't find them difficult enough hard/madness level will do the trick