August is shaping up to be an exciting month for JRPG fans so it makes for the perfect month to rekindle a classic Gaming Union monthly feature like the JRPG Gamer's Guide.
Towards the end of each month, we will be releasing a guide to the following month's JRPG releases. So be sure to check back monthly for the next installment.
Some months may be lighter than others, but we'll be sure to keep you up to date. With that said, let's move on to the releases for August 2013 as there are quite a few games to whet your appetite.
In Tales of Xillia players will choose to follow the story of a clever medical student named Jude Mathis, or a mysterious woman named Milla Maxwell who is accompanied by spirits of elements. Jude and Milla discover that the kingdom of Rashugal is experimenting with powers that could inflict harm to the world by draining mana from it.
Together with companions discovered on their journey, they seek to stop the power source being created and restore balance to the world's mana. Fans of the series will be happy to see a return of the Tales of Graces style gameplay, but with improved features including a new link system that will pair units together to unleash devastating combos.
Expect Tales of Xillia to hit stores in North America on August 6th and in Europe on August 9th. Get in your pre-orders now to secure your art book, soundtrack, and exclusive DLC costumes!
Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn | Pre-Order (US, UK)
The fabled MMO is back and better than ever. Critically acclaimed as being a huge shift in the right direction, this online world begs anyone with a Final Fantasy fandom heart to test its challenges.
Featuring 8 unique classes, 9 jobs, and 10 crafting professions-this title is full of things to do and different game elements to fit anyone's playstyle. Become a crafter and supply the frontlines, build a guild and take down the biggest of enemies, jump into the arenas and show your dominance, or just ride around on your trusty chocobo and explore the world.
Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn is slated to go live on August 27th on both PC and PS3. Get in your pre-order soon to be signed up for early access to the servers before the release date!
Dragon's Crown seeks to continue that element of brilliant design, while also delivering some deep gameplay. This side scrolling beat 'em up has 6 classes to choose from including Fighter, Amazon, Elf, Sorceress, Wizard, and Dwarf.
Once decided, explore its vast dungeons to claim glory, experience, and loot. It even supports local and online multiplayer for bashing baddies with your friends. Dragon's Crown will be available on both PS3 and Vita on August 6th, however it will not be cross-buy.
Etrian Odyssey IV: Legends of the Titan | Buy (US), Pre-Order (UK)
After a very long wait, European gamers will soon be able to plug Etrian Odyssey IV into their 3DS consoles. Due to release on August 30th, this epic sized dungeon crawler features a fully customizable party of four, ten unique classes, deep talent trees, hours of exploration, and even the ability to draw your own maps.
For fans of the series, they will still find the difficulty and brutal gameplay they know and love. However for new players to the series, there is a casual option to make for a comfortable entry level.
Rune Factory 4 | Pre-Order (US)
Step aside Animal Crossing, because Rune Factory 4 is soon to be arriving on the 3DS. After a series of unfortunate events, the player is thrown into the town of Selfia with a horrible case of amnesia.
If that wasn't enough, the villagers assume that you're a prince due to arrive and take over the town. Funny thing is, the real prince seems to think that's an okay idea. The town is full of tasks to take care of, features to unlock, and even a dungeon that needs to be tackled.
You'll also deal with relationships and a little bit of slice-of-life encounters to keep you entertained. While it doesn't have a solid date, it is expected to arrive in North America in August or early September.
Hatsune Miku: Project Diva F | Pre-Order (US), Buy (UK)
While this last one may not be considered a JRPG, if you're into JRPGs you probably love the Japanese culture. One phenomenon in Japan is the voice synthesizing software apply named Vocaloid. Hatsune Miku is the key idol of the series of music and rhythm based games that spawned from it.
Hatsune Miku: Project Diva F is a port from the Vita version that never seen it's way to shelves in the west and features 38 songs to keep any fan and new player occupied. There's also plenty of unlockable costumes and features.
Expect Hatsune Miku: Project Diva F to hit store shelves on August 27th in North America. No word on European release.
That wraps up this month's JRPG Gamer's Guide. There's a lot of great titles to look forward to, and plenty of wallets that will need intensive care. Is there a particular title that you're most excited about? Let us know in the comments and check back next month for the next installment of JRPG Gamer's Guide.