JP-Only Games

Japan-only gamesEdit

Box Art Title Genre Description
Bitgen bit Generations Experimental A series of 7 games made on the GBA. Artsy, minimalist, and fun, these are basically the indie games of the GBA. Boundish: Pong with several modes that mix things up. Digidrive: A weird game where you stack arrows and...hard to explain. Dialhex: Attempt to make hexagons with a rotating hexagon. Orbital: Rather similar to Osmos, actually, in that you play as a spherical object that needs to absorb smaller objects to grow larger. Dotstream: Simple racing game. Soundvoyager: An interesting game where you use sound to perform various challenges, such as avoiding cars. Coloris: Take Bejweled, except you shift the colors of the various blocks instead of physically moving them. Keep in mind that these are all separate games, and not all on one cartridge. Also recommend trying these out on an emulator, as they tend to be hit or miss with most people. The best of these games have been updated/ported on WiiWare and DSiWare.
Boktai3sc Boktai 3: Sabata's Counterattack Action RPG / Stealth The third installment in the Boktai series; Japan Only (Although a mostly complete translation patch has been released). Now that your gun is back, this is a smooth mix between 1+2's styles of fighting. By the way, you also get a CASKET MOTORCYCLE, which you ride to access new areas in shoot'em up-esque segments and can customize, doing away with the walking from dungeon A to B from the first two games. The last Boktai game, but it had a spiritual successor/alternate universe in Lunar Knights for DS. Translation, including Solar Sensor Fix in the extra folder
BomberJetters Bomberman Jetters: Densetsu no Bomberman RPG / Action-Adventure Spiritual Sequel to Bomberman Tournament, using many of the same mechanics. Despite being based off the Bomberman Jetters anime, you don't play as Shirobom/White-Bomber, but his badass older brother Mighty-Bomber (see far left), the original Bomberman hero. Japanese only, but everything's easy to figure out and you can just power through most puzzles and battles no problem. Just as good as Tournament otherwise.
920052 53508 front Crayon Shin-Chan: Arashi no Yobu Cinema-Land Daibouken! Platformer This is similar to Mickey Mouse's Magical Quest series in that you consistently swap costumes, each with different powers, to deal with obstacles and enemies. Unlike that series, this is 7 kinds of weirder and fucked up in worlds, costumes, enemies, and bosses. In addition to powers, you can also summon your family members to use different abilities that a short little kid can't manage. Reading is unnecessary, so play away. Has a GBA sequel, Densetsu o Yobu Omake no To Shukkugaan!, but the intro is tough to get past. Twice as good though, with a remastered summon system that lets you get all sorts of kick ass help from family and friends by mixing and matching cards.
CustomRoboGX Custom Robo GX Fighting Not anything like the others, it's really limited but if your a big fan you might want to give it a go. They didn't really try to make it pseudo-3d so it's just JUMP, DODGE, SHOOT!
Dns1 boxart Densetsu no Stafy Platformer Not as Kirby-like as you may think! The majority of areas are underwater and require swimming but there's also dry areas where Stafy can walk on land where he maneuvers by jumping and gliding about. The mixture of these two works a lot better than you may think. All Stafys but the fifth for DS (The Legendary Starfy [sic]) are Japan only, but pretty much need zero reading skills to play and enjoy. Like Kirby, these games are a little on the easy side, but still good fun.
Dns2 boxart Densetsu no Stafy 2 Platformer Sequel to the above. Has a good deal more stages than the first and now Stafy can find costumes to wear. These have special powers to help you proceed through stages as well as battle foes.
Dns3 boxart Densetsu no Stafy 3 Platformer Wario cameo. Well, fuck. If you liked the other 2, there's no reason for you to hate this one, is there? If you need more incentive, you can also play as Stafy's sister, who has some abilities of her own to get to places he can't.
Dqm-caravan Dragon Quest Monsters: Caravan Heart RPG An RPG that combines Oregon Trail with Dragon Quest Monsters and takes place in Dragon Quest 2's world. Quite ambitious, but there are a few flaws, mostly with monster customization, along with its conflict with your human caravans. Still, you can build your own camp with different humans, giving you casinos, shops, and more. There's a full-blown story-quest, revisiting altered locales of DQ2, with random OT-styled events, and having lots of secrets to find. The post-game is pretty wicked too, but may take a while to complete, thanks to a majority of it relying on random dungeons. Definitely worth a play. Japanese-only, but the rom has a full translation patch available.
Elemix Elemix! Run and Gun A kinda obscure Japanese Shmup, playing like Commando, but with abilities to alter your elemental attacks to deal extra damage to enemies. Takes place in a medieval fantasy setting, with typical monsters and what not. It's a bit hard at times, but if you find it kinda easy, beat the game to unlock the much harder Expert Mode. As expected for the genre, its perfectly playable without knowing any Japanese.
Eaon Elevator Action: Old and New Puzzle Essentially: Use Elevators to recover Top Secret info, kill/evade enemy spies, make a clean getaway. Includes the Arcade original so you can see what the series started as. Weapons now have limited ammo, which requires you to be smarter about how you dispose of enemies. Japanese only, but you don't need to know it to enjoy this.
F-zero-climax F-Zero Climax Racing Partially based on the anime like GP-Legend, but far more traditional as it lacks a story mode. It does have a "spin-attack" that lets you smash other racers, a track editor to create and share your own custom race-tracks with your pals. JP Only, obviously. Also the final F-Zero game released, to date.
563015 20191 front Fire Emblem: Fuin no Tsurugi SRPG AKA Fire Emblem 6. First FE on the system. Although a Japanese exclusive, it has a 95% fan translation patch around the web, so that shouldn't bar you from getting it. Hard as fuck even for a Fire Emblem game, but good old FE gameplay still holds up fine. Although this is a sequel to FE7 above, it has a few aspects that are unrefined and a bit harder to come back to from FE7, so be warned. Also, Roy sucks as a unit, so level him, but do it safely, since he can't Hector his way through the game.
Guru logic champ Guru Logic Champ Puzzle Look at that badass manly duck. Goddamn. Guru Logic Champ is one of Compile's last games. Surprisingly well done, playing similar to picross, but involves shooting blocks from a cannon to form a picture. Has cute little cutscenes telling who you're helping by solving these puzzles. Japanese only, but only take a to damn good/manly brain to enjoy. Nintendo and D4 Enterprise liked this and made a spiritual DSiware sequel using the same gameplay, "Snapdots", which made it overseas, (sadly lacking manly ducks).
0807 Hajime no Ippo - The Fighting! Boxing Simulator You play as one of the boxers from the anime and try to win the cup. Main storyline is Ippos but you can use anyone in the custom tournament. Plays like Punchout but with more tactical gameplay. Weave around your oponents punches, wait for your moment to strike, jab jab and then give them one in the jaw. Every character has different moves and specializes in different things. Against the computer, Ippo and Mashiba are broken as all hell. If you play this with a friend in multiplayer (you will both need a copy) you are in for one fun competetive fighter. Japanese only but there is a translation patch out there for the rom. Best Hajime no Ippo game out there.
Oh yeah: Made by treasure. You know it's good.
Hatena Satena Puzzle PICROSS,BITCH! But,really,this game is a really nice title using the "genre" concept of Picross: A grid with a number of tiles to be colored to ,in the end,reveal a image. The twist here is it done by colors,which makes the game a bit harder,but the Minesweeper' feature "hit-the-right-spot-all colored-tiles-around will colour itselves" make it easier to progress. Includes a multi-story modes with hard puzzles,but rewards with animations and collectables for the character,which is a nice point to play. JP-Only,but doesn't it's hard to find yourself with a 20x20 table to solve and it's easy to adapt' controls.
Goemon 1+2 Kessakusen! Ganbare Goemon 1+2 Platformer Port combo of Mystical Ninja/Ganbare Goemon 1 and 2 for SNES. You play in an alternate Japan as heroic, but wacky ninja-thieves. These games are Japanese only, but don't require any reading and are non-sensical anyways. Regardless, they're both very fun and enjoyable. 2 introduces IMPACT, a giant clockwork robot who you fight first-person battles with. 2 also has a 3rd character, Sasuke, a mini clockwork robot who you fought in the first game (but repaired to be a good guy, er, bot).
Klonoa heroes Klonoa Heroes: Densetsu no Star Medal Action RPG / Run and Gun Unlike the first 2 Klonoas, this is more of an adventure-esque shmup, most similar to Legend of Valkyrie for arcade. Enemies come in different colors and you must use appropriate colored weapons to defeat them. You get control of three different characters with different weapon types, all of which can hit different colors. Different, but still quite enjoyable.
Lode runner Lode Runner Puzzle Lode Runner revolves around a cat-and-mouse premise which has you outrunning and tricking enemies so you can collect gold and escape to the next area. Your only real defense is a gun that lets you disintegrate panels in front of or behind you to trap your enemies in. Just don't get trapped yourself. As always, gets damn tricky in later levels. Not as hard as the original or even the N64 one but still challenging
563072 23651 front Metalgun Slinger Platformer A retro styled platformer that somewhat resembles Trigun, but with more robots and mutants. It plays like a cross between Donkey Kong '94 and Journey to Silius. You get more weapons and skill badges after beating bosses, and you can pull off some cool acrobatics. Track down bounties hidden within stages to increase your life gauge. Japanese only, but you don't need to know what's going on to enjoy this.
Monstergate Monster Gate series RPG / Roguelike Konami's spiritual succesor to their game Cave Noire on Game Boy, which revolved around exploring random dungeons to perform small tasks such as find loot or kill x monsters. The tasks get more perilous with each dungeon visit. You obtain random cards within dungeons that act as items, spells, buffs, etc. There's now different classes to use with different specialties. Give it a shot if you want a more casual style of roguelike, but still like that sense of risk they have.
Mother1+2 boxart Mother 1+2 (M1 translation) RPG This has a patch to give the first a superior re-translation by the staff who worked on Mother 3 below and was edited to keep the best parts of both versions along with additional extra functions and text. The patch also includes an optional "Easy Ring", which doubles the experience and money gained from battles and lowers the encounter rate when equipped. The second game is pretty much untouched, because re-translating it would take the effort it took for 3, due to issues debugging from the original once translated. If you've never played Mother 1, give it a shot. Check out the patch along with its FAQ and other info HERE!
Mother3 Mother 3 RPG The faroff sequel to Mother 2, A.K.A. "Earthbound". Has a few improvements over its predecessor gameplay-wise, and is also more emotional-written. Considered one the best RPGs for Gameboy Advance. Quirky SNES-style graphics (which are MUCH cleaner than Earthbound's), sentimental writing, and a moving story don't hurt this game either. Japan only, but an English translation exists here.
Mrda Mr. Driller A: Fushigi no Pacteria Puzzle One of the aforementioned sequels. Includes much more different characters with different specialties. Also features a sort of RPG-esque mode where you drill through different areas, sometimes encountering monsters to fight and random events as well. Even if you just play normal mode, its a step up from 2, though it's Japanese only, and is a bit hard to find nowadays.
Rhythmtengoku Rhythm Tengoku Minigame / Rhythm Play to the beat in the prequel to Rhythm Heaven (on DS). Though Japanese only, it takes no knowledge of the language to figure out, just a good sense of rhythm, which you may or may not get from playing this. Don't let the cartoony visuals fool you—it's pretty tough. Sequels on DS, Wii, and 3DS. Has a full English fan translation available.
SMDQ Slime Morimori Dragon Quest: Shougeki no Shippo Dan RPG / Action-Adventure Prequel to Rocket Slime on DS. Your home has been invaded, your fellow slimes have been taken hostage, and the town is left in shambles after the assault. Are you going to take that lying down? AW HELL NAW. Slip, slide, tackle, burrow, bounce, lift, toss, float, and generally maneuver your way through areas as you save your friends, make foes your allies, and take on the bosses of the enemy. Japanese only, but more than easy enough to figure out.
Tales of the world 2 Tales of the World: Narikiri Dungeon 2 and 3 RPG Well done action and control proves the GBA can handle Tales action far better than Phantasia's attempt. These games revolve around side-quests in large dungeons instead of full blown adventures. They still have bosses and typical Tales fighting. However, you can have various classes, based off of different Tales characters, some exactly copying them and their skills. There's also weird jobs such as chef and thief, but these tend to help out in your quests. 3 has a weird grid-based exploration, but makes up for it with more jobs and characters, including those form Symphonia. Both games are Japanese only, but have translation patches for menus and basic quest info.
Shin Megami Tensei GBA cover Shin Megami Tensei 1 and 2 RPG FUCKING AWESOME SMT! Atlus remake of one of the best RPGs of SNES to GBA with an oh-so-good graphical update, which is reminiscent of the PS1 remake. The map is better looking, the dungeon-movement system is smoothly awesome, but sadly, the sprites and story are untouched and music is awful, due to the limitations of the GBA. Like the SNES (with a full-playable translation from Aeon Genesis) and the PS1 remake, JP-Only, but if you played/beaten the original or translated game, you know how to battle and HEY DEMON-PAL, JOIN ME!
Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.