RPG Length: Why Longer isn’t Necessarily Better and Pacing is Important

After the explosion today on Twitter that resulted from Robert Boyd talking about Chrono Trigger’s pacing, and the comment about Final Fantasy 7, RPGs, and long game length that resulted in a less-than-charitable Twitter user’s outburst, it got me thinking once more about my preferences when it comes to RPGs.

Ever since I was a wee lad, eagerly placing a cartridge of Final Fantasy IV into his SNES, I have adored RPGs. When I wasn’t rocking out with Mario, Sonic, and all the other platformers of the early to mid 90s, I was ravenously looking for any new RPG I could get my hands on. I used to hound the local pawn shop every week, meticulously looking over the new games the owner had acquired, searching for more of that role-playing goodness to sate the appetite Cecil’s adventure created.

Now I find myself distant from the genre, despite the incredible abundance of games it contains that are all easily obtainable. No longer am I a young lad restrained by money and locked to the used games friends traded or pawn shops and thrift stores sold. Between any of the stores I could visit and the entire Internet accessible at the slightest touch, I could gorge myself on RPGs of any kind.

And, for a time, this change left me lost and confused, wondering “why?” Continue reading

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