Top 10 Longest RPGs in my Backlog
How long are the longest games that I want to play someday?
I looked at all the games currently in my “Backlog” category on HowLongToBeat, and found the top 10 longest RPGs based on “Main Story” times. I’m only including games that HowLongToBeat lists as “Role-Playing” for the genre. This is an easy way to filter out the life simulation games like Animal Crossing or Story of Seasons, which actually have really long completion times on HowLongToBeat. Those games can be even bigger time sinks than RPGs!
One last note, since this list only includes games still on my backlog, there are no Persona games here. Rest assured that if Persona 3, 4, and 5 were still on my backlog, they would all appear on this list since the shortest of them is still 70 hours long! The Persona games that are still on my backlog, Persona 1 and both Persona 2 games, aren’t quite as long. Persona on the PSP is 32h 29m, and Persona 2: Innocent Sin is around the same length. The second Persona 2 game, Eternal Punishment, is much closer to making the list, coming in at 53h 12m! But, a lot of games on my backlog are around that length too, so it would face a lot of competition!
Anyway, on to the list!
10. Valkyria Chronicles 3: Unrecorded Chronicles (58h 19m)
A game released only in Japan, Valkyria Chronicles 3 clocks in at 58 hours and 19 minutes, putting at the bottom spot of this list. There is a fan-created English translation patch available, which is why I added this to my backlog in the first place. Since I haven’t yet played the first or second game in this series, the latter of which was also only released in Japan, it’ll be a while until I actually get around to playing Valkyria Chronicles 3. There’s a chance I never will if I end up hating the first game.
If I do get into the series though, doing Main + Extras in Valkyria Chronicles 3 would take about 90 hours, and 100% is 141 hours! Although there is currently only a single reported time on HowLongToBeat for the 100% Completionist category, so that time could actually vary quite a bit.
9. Octopath Traveler (59h 19m)
With its eight characters and their individual stories, completing all of them in Octopath Traveler is a lengthy process. This is assuming you ignore optional side quests. If you decided to tackle the side quests as well, you would be looking at a time closer to 76 hours to finish the main story and sidequests, and if you were aiming for 100% completion of absolutely everything in the game, you would have to say goodbye to 102 hours of your life!
8. God Eater 2: Rage Burst (60h 02m)
I’ve actually played a bit of the PC port of the first God Eater game…and dropped it. The games are often referred to as Hunting RPGs, a sub-genre that the Monster Hunter series created and also belongs to. I’ve never played a Monster Hunter game, but what I played of God Eater 1 I didn’t enjoy all that much. What got me interested was the anime aesthetic, and honestly I loved the animated opening sequence. The story premise was interesting, and I liked the characters too. You’d think that it was shaping up to be a series I enjoyed a lot…except the gameplay was too repetitive and grindy for me.
You basically fight series of monsters across a ton of missions, and the strategy to defeat a given type of monster doesn’t really change between missions. Some of them also have a ton of HP, or annoying patterns that I never really fully figured out. Co-op seems to be a big part of this genre, and I might have enjoyed it a lot more if I was fighting alongside friends instead of just the AI companions. For now God Eater 2 is still on my backlog. Maybe I’ll enjoy the sequel a lot more than the first game.
There aren’t that many reported times for God Eater 2 on HowLongToBeat. The times that are reported for Main + Extras and 100% are long though. Main + Extras is at 89 hours currently, while 100% is 128 hours!
7. Suikoden III (61h 37m)
Of the Suikoden series, Suikoden III definitely isn’t first on my list of Suikodens to play. I mean, first of all it’s the third game, and even if I wouldn’t have to play the first and second games before it, I want to. Besides that, I’ve heard that Suikoden III isn’t that great, especially when compared to the games it had to follow up. Those are just other people’s opinions though, and I still want to give it a try and form my own opinions on it, but it’s definitely shaped my expectations of this entry a bit.
There’s actually not that much of a difference between completing the Main Story, Main Story + Extras, and 100% completing Suikoden III. Main + Extras is about 65 hours, while 100% is 73.
6. Phantasy Star Online Episode I & II Plus (61h 40m)
I’m not entirely sure if it’s possible to play this game online anymore. With “Online” as part of the very title, clearly the online portion of this game was once a significant part of the experience. There may be fan-run servers for it, but I don’t know if they support the GameCube version? Part of the reason I picked this version of Phantasy Star Online is because of the split-screen co-op this edition offers. I think when I play this game someday, I’ll do so with a friend by my side, as I have a feeling the content isn’t really meant to be enjoyed solo.
There’s actually only Main Story and Main + Extras times reported on HowLongToBeat here - not a single time exists for the 100% Completionist category. Main + Extras sits at 86 hours as of this writing.
5. The Last Remnant (62h 01m)
The Last Remnant released first on Xbox 360 before releasing on PC shortly after. A Remastered version was released for PS4 in 2018, and also for the Switch in 2019. Roughly around the time of the Remastered version’s release, the PC version of The Last Remnant was de-listed on Steam, and can’t be purchased anymore. Good thing I’ve had it sitting in my Steam library since 2014!
The battle system in The Last Remnant seems pretty unique, and that’s the big draw for me. I don’t know much about it, but I’m willing to give it a shot and see if it’s something I enjoy! Main + Extras is listed as 78 hours, while Completionist is 147 hours.
4. Xenoblade Chronicles 3D (63h 20m)
Edit: With the announcement of Xenoblade Chronicles Definitive Edition coming to the Switch, I’ve decided that I’ll just wait and play that version instead.
Coming in at 4th place, with a Main Story time just 6 minutes less than the 3rd game on this list, we have Xenoblade Chronicles 3D. As of this writing, Xenoblade Chronicles 3D is actually next up on my 3DS backlog, as I’ve finished all the games I had put above it. I’m certainly in for a lengthy game! Main + Extras is listed as 92 hours, while Completionist is at 144 hours! I’m not sure how much extra content I’ll pursue, but if I really enjoy this one I guess I could enjoy it for up to 144 hours if I really wanted to!
3. Dragon Quest VIII: Journey of the Cursed King (63h 26m)
Dragon Quest VIII is a game I really want to try, but I have just so many other games that I also really want to try before it! I remember seeing an ad or article for the original PS2 version as a kid, back when I only had Nintendo consoles. It looked so cool, the art style blew me away, and it seemed like it would be such an incredible adventure. It made quite an impression on me, but I never had a way to play it. Now with the 3DS port, it shouldn’t be too hard to track down, and I have a system to play it on!
Main + Extras is 81 hours, while Completionist is 120 hours. There’s certainly a lot of content here if Dragon Quest VIII charms me enough to complete a bunch of the optional quests!
2. Xenoblade Chronicles 2 (65h 10m)
To those who have played Xenoblade Chronicles 2, it’s no surprise to see it this high on the list. Xenoblade Chronicles 2 is an enormous game by all accounts. The main story alone is 65 hours. Main + Extras is 107 hours, and Completionist is a whopping 251 hours! There’s got to be some grinding or New Game+ stuff in that Completionist time, because 251 hours is just an incredible number.
I don’t think I’ll get anywhere near the Completionist time for this game, but I’m hoping I enjoy it enough to make it through the main story and some of the optional content!
1. Dragon Quest VII: Fragments of the Forgotten Past (73h 03m)
Topping the list with its Main Story time of 73 hours is Dragon Quest VII. Originally released on the PlayStation as “Dragon Warrior VII” in North America, the seventh entry in the Dragon Quest series has always been a long game. This entry is for the 2016 3DS remake, and believe it or not, the times on HowLongToBeat for the original PlayStation version are all even longer.
The 3DS version has a time of 88 hours for Main + Extras and 121 hours for Completionist.
The PlayStation version has a Main Story time of 106 hours. That’s just to complete the main story! Main + Extras is 133 hours, and Completionist is a mind-blowing 272 hours!
I don’t mind at all having shorter times for the 3DS version. I’m going to take that as a sign that some tedious or dated mechanics have been updated for the 2016 release. Another thing that doubtlessly reduces the amount of required time is the removal of random encounters. Like many RPGs of its era, the original PlayStation Dragon Quest VII had random encounters every few steps. Much to my delight, the 3DS version removes these and replaces them with visible enemies on the overworld, making it possible to avoid battles when you really don’t want to battle.