The lights are on
Many of the greatest role-playing games in video game
history can trace their roots back to a developer's love of Dungeons &
Dragons. Early classics like Ultima, Wizardry, and Final Fantasy have monsters,
spells, classes, and other elements drawn directly out of the original edition
of D&D. In addition to those games inspired by Dungeons & Dragons, the
property has been the host of many officially licensed D&D games over the
years - many of which stand as classics in their own right.
Peruse our ranked list of the top ten D&D video games
below, and share your picks in the comments at the end of the article.
10. Eye of the Beholder
Developer: Westwood Associates
A number of popular computer role-playing games in the
1980s, including Wizardry, The Bard's Tale, and Might and Magic, allowed for
players to take an adventuring party into the depths of a dungeon while
utilizing a first-person perspective to explore, fight, and engage with the
world. Eye of the Beholder embraced the trend, and emerged as one of the best
examples of the practice. The game boasts extremely challenging battles that
are rooted in the monsters, weapons, classes, and races of the D&D fiction.
Eye of the Beholder garnered an enthusiastic following that resulted in two subsequent
sequels. It also had a pun for a name, which we appreciate.
9. Dungeons & Dragons: Dragonshard
Developer: Liquid Entertainment
Somewhat less known than many of the titles on this list,
Dragonshard is nonetheless a very enjoyable romp through the Eberron D&D
campaign setting - unique on this list because it falls firmly into the real
time strategy genre. Players control an army of heroes and soldiers as they
compete over the power of a mystical magical artifact. One of its coolest
features is the mix of above-ground army battles and more dungeon crawl-focused
sections in the world's expansive underground. Three unique factions are each
available to play, two of which get dedicated story campaigns, making this a
relatively brief but enjoyable gaming experience that mixes RTS with
8. Icewind Dale
Developer: Black Isle Studios
Like several games on this list, Icewind Dale employs the
Infinity Engine to great effect, allowing for a flexible, highly adaptable
gameplay experience ideal for strategic battles, control of multiple
characters, and impressive visuals. While comparable to the gameplay of the
Baldur's Gate series, Icewind Dale established its own story continuity and
characters, and shouldn't be overlooked in the shadow of the more well-known
series. Real-time combat keeps up the action vibe, but most players make ample
use of the ability to pause the action to figure out strategic options
throughout an encounter. Among other strong features, the game is notable for
its stellar musical score by Jeremy Soule, who would go on in later years to
compose for Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, The Elder Scrolls IV:
Oblivion, and Guild Wars 2.
[Next up: The chance to craft your own D&D adventures, and Patrick Stewart in a D&D game]
Email the author Matt Miller, or follow on Game Informer.