Y2K is an indie JRPG about hipsters and panda plushies

Is it still a JRPG if it's developed by Americans? That's both a 21st century kōan, and a genuine question I have of Y2K. Perhaps it's more accurate to call it a J-style RPG; taking the design philosophies of the genre, and tying them to a Western story that's nevertheless inspired by the novelist Haruki Murakami.

All you really need to know is that the main character's weapon is a vinyl record. Also that there are "weaponized panda plushies".

Your own tolerance for hipster culture, plushies or surreal depictions of '90s-era technology aside, the developer has posted a few pre-alpha videos and they're looking pretty promising. Already they offer a good overview of the battles, puzzle-style and weirdness of the game:

Y2K is due out for Windows, Mac, Linux and various Playstation devices. There's no release date yet, but you can follow its progress over at the dev's site.

Note: Y2K was brought to my attention by Cassandra Khaw, who is both business developer for the game's publisher, Ysbryd Games, and an occasional writer for PC Gamer.


Phil has been PC gaming since the '90s, when RPGs had dice rolls and open world adventures were weird and French. Now he's the deputy editor of PC Gamer; commissioning features, filling magazine pages, and knowing where the apostrophe goes in '90s. He plays Scout in TF2, and isn't even ashamed.
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