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    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Devil

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    Default The popularity of TRPG's in the east

    I was watching a new anime called goblin slayer recently, which honestly feels like someone made a anime based on their tabletop game. This got me wondering how populair the TRPG's are over there. I think they were created in america (gary gygax was american).
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    gkathellar's Avatar

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    Default Re: The popularity of TRPG's in the east

    Well, first of all, the East is a big place (and a delicate matter).

    But in Japan, there's a reasonably large collection of TTRPG players - although they call them "table-talk roleplaying games," IIRC. D&D has a respectable following, but most of the focus beyond that is on products from Japanese publishers, some of which have made their way to this side of the pond officially or unofficially. Here are some of the ones I remember, though not by name (these should not be taken as representative of Japanese TTRPGs so much as a particular slice of American interest in Japanese TTRPGs):
    • Tenra Something Bansho, which has giant robots and ninjas and is basically as stereotypical as you can imagine.
    • You play cute animal spirits helping rural townsfolk and it's basically My Neighbor Totoro except you are the cat bus. It's adorable.
    • A fantasy game that is pretty much Rune Factory Meets Oregon Trail.
    • There's at least one Touhou fan game because of course there's is.


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    HalflingRangerGuy

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    Default Re: The popularity of TRPG's in the east

    I believe most manga/anime get their cues from eastern computer based rpgs which are based on either directly on western myths, on western games, or western computer games. They're second or third hand sources so they have plenty of more japanese eccentricities to the western flavour.
    Last edited by The Jack; 2018-11-04 at 02:52 PM.

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    Default Re: The popularity of TRPG's in the east

    I think it is safe to say they are just as popular in the East as the West. Really the only place where RPGs are not popular is Africa.

    The basic TRPG idea has broad appeal to just about everyone.

    Though really East and West do have a very strong Geek Connection. Take like anime and robots....both are huge popular things in the East....and when they came over to the west, well, they are now huge popular things in the West. The same way things made in America like TRPGs or Star Wars, are huge things in the East too.

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    Default Re: The popularity of TRPG's in the east

    Quote Originally Posted by evangaline View Post
    I was watching a new anime called goblin slayer recently, which honestly feels like someone made a anime based on their tabletop game. This got me wondering how populair the TRPG's are over there. I think they were created in america (gary gygax was american).
    I've seen some things on it in bits and pieces over the years since the history of console RPGs is tightly linked to oldschool tabletop RPGs (In particular, the way Wizardry and Ultima bridged the ocean so to speak), but this was a good summary I stumbled across some weeks back:



    The TL;DR of it is Japan's Tabletop RPG industry is pretty active, but niche since people don't play at home. In the video they talk about something I've known about for a long time, but didn't realize how big it was, where they'll basically sell campaign logs as books for people to read. The tradition goes back as far as Record of Lodoss War. (I'm kind of surprised we don't have those in the west. There's lots of epic campaign logs get posted to Reddit and forums and achieve a fair bit of popularity, and celebrity D&D streams have become a thing, so... there's an opportunity to be had there.)

    One of these days I want to sit down with a translation of the Sword World books and mull through them. I can recognize some of the anime/manga/LN/WNs I read as coming from Sword World, but I don't know enough about the game to do much more than recognize the races and tropes they use.
    Last edited by Alent; 2018-11-04 at 03:38 PM.
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    BarbarianGuy

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    Default Re: The popularity of TRPG's in the east

    Yes, D&D became (relatively) popular in Japan in the 80's. It was the origin or inspiration for novels, manga, cartoons, and CRPGs (and other TRPGs), the same way it did in the US and Europe. Anything that kind of looks like something from D&D probably is from D&D or only a few steps removed (like six degrees of Kevin Bacon). People underestimate what a big impact D&D had on gaming and fantasy in popular culture. What a lot of people consider "universal/generic fantasy" is actually specifically from D&D, and pretty much all early computer RPGs were based on the basic mechanics of D&D.

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    Default Re: The popularity of TRPG's in the east

    First things first - "The east" is both massive and vague, and you're looking specifically at the output of one country and even then a particularly nerdy subculture. Japan definitely has a tabletop RPG scene, and while it's not huge it's also far from insignificant, with publishers making decent sales by RPG standards. Korea has some as well, and there is at least a tiny indie scene all over the place, though often among people who speak English fluently as a second language and thus are involved in Anglosphere RPGs.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Jack View Post
    I believe most manga/anime get their cues from eastern computer based rpgs which are based on either directly on western myths, on western games, or western computer games. They're second or third hand sources so they have plenty of more japanese eccentricities to the western flavour.
    It's probably a more common source than tRPGs, if only because computer games are broadly more common and familiar. That said there are definite cases where tRPGs were involved, starting with Slayers and Records of Lodoss War.

    "Eastern computer based rpgs" is also a broad and pretty useless category, mostly because it combines some very different groups of games in markets that don't necessarily interact much. Specifically there are three major markets - Japan, China, and Korea. Southeast asia tends to see exports from all three, often with questionable bootleg translations, but internally the market permeation varies. Japan and Korea see a lot of exchange of games, but both also see a lot of exchange of games with the U.S. to the point where the major separation isn't west/east but there's effectively a U.S./Japan/Korea market (all of which have smaller markets that interact less) and then a separate Chinese market. Ideas do drift between these areas, but you still get very distinct genres. Chinese RPGs in particular are very often overt cultivation fantasy of some sort, with a whole different set of mechanics to support that, ending up at least as distinct from both jRPGs and western* RPGs (which are themselves genre labels for different designs which are both being produced in both places).

    *"Western" in this case tending to be anglosphere companies mostly in the U.S. exaggerating their scale, as there's a major continental European market, especially in eastern Europe, which largely does their own thing.
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    Devil

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    Default Re: The popularity of TRPG's in the east

    Wow. Thanks for all of this interesting information! It's cool to figure out tabletop games are also populair there. I love that they sell campain journals there and I wish we did that too. For example, i'd be willing to pay for the silverswift's campain or the all guardsmen party. Its sad we have very few awesome campain logs.

    I'll have to check out japanese dnd (sword world 2.5) to figure out the difference between euro/american game design and japanese game design. I'll probably compare it to Korea as well.


    "The east"
    My apologies for the generalisation of the eastern asian part of the world. It was in no way intended as something negative.
    Last edited by evangaline; 2018-11-04 at 05:04 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Caimheul View Post
    *slow clap* That is an absolutely beautiful, completely in character post for a tech priest. *wipes tear from eye*
    Quote Originally Posted by Demon 997 View Post
    I'm just not sure if I should back away slowly, or arrest the man. But on what charges? There are so many...

    Unnatural acts of tech sorcery? Theft? Coveting thee neighbors skull? Illegal punning?

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    Default Re: The popularity of TRPG's in the east

    Quote Originally Posted by evangaline View Post
    My apologies for the generalisation of the eastern asian part of the world. It was in no way intended as something negative.
    True, but the problem is that it's equivalent to asking about 'the western RPG scene', and I can tell you that it differs a lot between the US, the UK, and Germany, just for three examples (the UK scene cares a lot more about the spirit of the game compared to the US market, and as such doesn't have so much 'how can I use D&D to run X'). Therefore we can say that the RPG scene in Japan, China, and Korea are all different, the same for every country.

    Although from what I've gathered from my Chinese friends there isn't really even a board games scene* other there, and Chinese people certainly have negative stereotypes of roleplaying games even if they enjoy roleplaying themselves. What exists is apparently mainly a thing by foreigners who came over to work (but then again the friend I have the most contact with is from only one city, so it might be different elsewhere).

    * At least not in the way we're used to in the Anglosphere.
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    ElfRangerGuy

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    Default Re: The popularity of TRPG's in the east

    There is definitely a board game scene in Beijing, and it probably also exist in the more internationalized city of Shanghai. My friends in other Chinese cities do complain to me that it's hard to find someone to play board games with.

    Speaking of TRPG though. I managed to find a few friends to play D&D and CoC with during my undergraduate years in Beijing.

    Hong Kong is both Chinese and "in the Anglosphere", so I would assume it's not hard to find a group of players there.
    Last edited by ahyangyi; 2018-11-11 at 04:08 AM.

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