Japanese roleplaying games are firmly in the spotlight with the recent releases of both Persona 3 Reload and Like A Dragon: Infinite Wealth. But the genre’s biggest game on Steam right now is, somewhat surprisingly, neither of them.
Granblue Fantasy: Relink has been quietly outperforming its heavyweight competition since it came out on February 1, passing a peak of 85,000 players logged in at the same time, according to estimates from Steam Database. Granblue Fantasy might not have the long, long history behind it that the Persona and Yakuza series enjoy, but that’s clearly not stopping players from diving into the skyfaring romp.
In comparison, Like A Dragon: Infinite Wealth’s concurrent player peak currently sits at an estimated 46,000, while the remade classic Persona 3 Reload has a similar 43,000 peak. Sega‘s roleplaying double whammy might sit at second and third place in the JRPG debut charts, but those numbers are still nothing to scoff at.
Persona 3 Reload set records for the biggest Steam debut in developer Atlus’ entire catalog, validating its newly formed multiplatform approach after decades of console exclusivity. Like A Dragon: Infinite Wealth was also the fastest-selling game in Yakuza history, so both are still on the up and up, even after so many decades in the race.
Granblue Fantasy: Relink also comes hot off multiple other big multimedia endeavors. For those unaware, the Granblue Fantasy series began life as a free-to-play mobile game boasting the talents of composer Nobuo Uematsu (of Final Fantasy and Lost Odyssey fame) and art director Hideo Minaba (also of Final Fantasy and Lost Odyssey fame.)
The first mobile outing was already a mammoth success in Japan, bolstered by an anime adaptation and a pretty great fighting game spin-off that catapulted the series into the clouds, somewhat explaining Relink’s mega launch. Granblue Fantasy: Relink instead takes the action route, with a massive roster of fighters available to slash/shoot/stab at foes with four-player co-op too.
Up next on the JRPG train is Final Fantasy 7 Rebirth, which is arriving on February 29. We won’t have comparative Steam numbers at launch because of outdated exclusivity deals on Sony‘s side. Capcom then joins the race with Dragon’s Dogma 2, arriving on PC and consoles on March 22.
Check out the new games coming in 2024 for more unexpected surprises.