The lights are on
Veteran Member - Level 12
I've been silent for quite some time now, many months actually, but just yesterday I got this whole lot of cool new ideas to make into blog posts and this is the first one of many. So, without any more waiting, here's my 10 most favorite RPG-s, starting from 10th place...
#10 - Guild Wars 2
I haven't played many MMORPG's in my lifetime. To tell the truth, only a few. But from what I've seen, this game really blew my mind. The graphics and the size of the world and also the gameplay really got me into playing the game for hours. It's just beautiful, the quality of graphics is close to what you can find in Skyrim. And it's a MMORPG. Which is even better.
I had the chance to play this during the last beta weekend, my friend got a beta key. I played the Charr race, which is this giant feline creature running on four legs, having these horns and so on. Quite cool to tell the truth. Character customization is top-notch, you have so many things you can change. And there can be so many different stories and endings for each character, because the character creation really sets up a lot of stuff. You can choose your race, your class (8 classes), your sort-of "faction" within your race and lots of other personal stuff, which will generate a custom like backstory to your character which eventually evolves into an interesting story. I only played this game like 4-5 hours, so I can't really tell much about it. The game has also my favorite payment method - pay once, play as much as you want. The only other thing you have to pay for are all the non-essential items you can buy from some premium shop, which I have never had any need for.
#9 - Diablo 2: Lord Of Destruction
I'm gonna do this one short. I've never had much fun with any of the Blizzard games. Warcraft wasn't too interesting, Starcraft was too challenging... Only Diablo 2 was something that made me come back once in a while. The game is really old, doesn't have many settings to customize the graphics, but the gameplay is superb. Diablo 2 created the true definition of a "boss battle" for me. It's easy to blast through hundreds of skeletons and demonic beings, but when you are face to face against a prime evil or even a mini-boss, things get bloody and deadly quite quickly.
Why Diablo 2: Lord of Destruction is only on 9th place in my list... It is so, because of the skill system. For example, I played as a Necromancer. I went through all the first four acts without much problem, but when I reached Baal, I died over and over again. He was just too tough. I know I had the wrong build, but why was the option even there in the first place, if it wouldn't guarantee the completion of the game. So instead, I had to play through all the game again as a paladin... And when killing minions was much more challenging, fighting against bosses was a piece of cake. In my opinion, many things were unbalanced. But it was and is still a very good game, there is no doubt in that.
#8 - The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind
Morrowind was a great game. And though the graphics and all is really outdated and not many had played the game since it is pre-Oblivion (released almost 10 years before Skyrim), Morrowind is, in my opinion, old.
I recently played it through again and I must say it still has it's moments here and there, but many of the newer games have come out with much greater moments and so I can't really place it anywhere high. But the game made the list thanks to its two great expansion packs, the huge open world you explore and many other things I'm not gonna talk about right now. I might even be discriminating the game, since the score is also very epic and is regarded as one of my all-time favorite video game soundtracks. But once you have played the game through once, which usually takes up to 20 hours, maybe more, maybe less, you don't see much replay value in there. The quests are same, the items are same and not much random loot in general. You could play a mage of course, but the spell system doesn't really work that well and that's why the game is so low in the rankings.
Here's a few blog posts I have written about this game:
#7 - Titan Quest: Immortal Throne
Titan Quest is a Diablo clone, only with newer and much better graphics, enhanced gameplay and a sum of 9 masteries which you can combine with each other the way you want (up to 2 masteries per character), it offers a variety of classes you can play as. My all-time favorite class is Harbinger, which the combination of Warfare Mastery and Dream Mastery.
The world, although linear, is rather massive and the story is interesting. The gameplay is addictive and the amount of different creatures and items makes it a thrilling experience. I've definitely put over 200 hours into this game in the past, much more of what I've put into Diablo 2. It comes with multiplayer option and also a difficult-to-learn, fun-to-use map editor.
#6 - The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
Skyrim is on 6th place...? You might say that this is absurd, but hear me out. There are no words that I can think of to explain, how good this game is. But... I haven't had much time to play it. I can't play it in my own notebook, since it cannot even run Oblivion. So I played it about 15-20 hours when it came out (the first weekend) and after that I haven't touched the game a single time.
I don't know about the main quest much and frankly, I'm glad I don't. When I escaped Helgen Keep, the first thing I did was that I turned straight around and went the other way, into the mountains. That's what I always do in any of the Bethesda games. I get out of the introduction part (sewers, vaults etc.) and then I go the opposite way of the direction I'm supposed to go. For example, in Fallout 3, when I'm supposed to go to Megaton, I instead climb a few cliffs, kill a few raiders, get a hunting rifle, mini-nuke, sniper rifle and flamethrower right next to Vault 101. If you were to go straight to Megaton, you wouldn't even find these things.
The game is exceptionally good, but I will sink into it some time during 2013. Currently I just don't have the time/tech to play it.
#5 - Arcanum: Of Steamworks & Magick Obscura
Arcanum is an exceptionally addictive open-world non-linear 2D steampunk role-playing game. That's a very long review put into one sentence. It was developed by Troika Games and released by Sierra back in 2001 and it is still, eleven years later, a masterpiece.
I wrote a very long in-depth review about the game during my first days here in the gaming community. This review established my own video game review structure which I have been using for a year when reviewing games. Different aspects of the games are separated into different pages, giving the reader a feeling of reading a book. Everything is illustrated and so on. First page is usually introduction, who made the game, what it is and so on, while the last page is all about conclusion. So, if you want to know more about the game, please read this:
Oldie Review: Arcanum
#4 - Star Wars: Knights Of The Old Republic (including its sequel, The Sith Lords)
KOTOR, which is Knights Of The Old Republic in short, is something I will never forget. Lucasarts should have never made that ridiculous MMORPG... What this game should have, is another sequel, only with better graphics, better gameplay and single-player/multiplayer components separated from each other. But it has a game that is just these things - Mass Effect 3. Like Apozem said in one of my reviews, these two games can be considered "the roots" of Mass Effect. And I agree with that. And once again, I am not going to talk much about the games. I have reviews written before and praised by the community, so I will give you those instead. I'd suggest reading the first one, since it talks about both of the games and does it so very thoroughly.
#3 - Dungeon Siege: Legends Of Aranna (including a modification called Legends Of Utrae)
This game is so simple and so addictive. I haven't reviewed the game before, so I'm going to do this a bit longer.
Dungeon Siege: Legends Of Aranna is a 3D third-person perspective hack & slash role-playing game developed by Gas Powered Games and released by Microsoft Game Studios in 2003. The story takes place in the world of Aranna. There are a total of 3 MASSIVE worlds created for the game, two for single-player, one especially for multiplayer (non-linear, open world). All of these can be played in multiplayer on 3 difficulty levels (Normal, Veteran, Elite), just like in Diablo series and Titan Quest. The maps are the same, but the monsters are more challenging and items get better.
Back in 2002, when the original game was released, I was stunned by the graphics and framerate ratio. In my opinion, the graphics were not and still aren't that outdated (Minecraft looks worse), but the framerate was just so good. I can't play Minecraft even on 10 frames per second on complete minimum and I play Dungeon Siege at 40 FPS on maximum. Another thing I really liked was the 360 degree zoom-in/zoom-out camera you had full control over all the time. You could play from top-down perspective, from a side angle like in Titan Quest and even from behind your character if you really wanted to.
What this game shines at is the multiplayer component. Yeah, you can get lots of characters to follow you in single-player, including pack animals and you could save the game, but it's also in the multiplayer. I am playing this free mod "Legends Of Utrae", which updated the original multiplayer world in the ways I can't even describe right now, making it a world I can play for tens of hours. There are 3 worlds in total, as I've said before. Single-player worlds are more linear while the multiplayer-only world called "Utraean Peninsula" is non-linear and you can go pretty much where you want from the starting town called Eldim. "Kingdom Of Ehb", which is on the picture, is the map of the original single-player campaign, which can be played in multiplayer as well, this time with your friends. But here's the map of Utraean Peninsula for your viewing:
And guess what, even some of the dungeons have multiple exits. And there is also this Pit of Despair, which is pretty much a dark, dangerous underground maze, that has 3 sections. Going through each section is harder than the previous one. I went through it with my friend the other day and we had to use a guide to get through. And even with a guide, it took us hours. Because when you reach the last section, which is pretty much "miles of stairs", you'll see the true definition of a "maze". It feels like being a rat, running around to find that chunk of cheese. It really feels like that.
Why I said before that the game is simple, but fun is that it's not like the ordinary hack & slash RPG's. It has no skill trees. It has no masteries. All you have are 3 attributes: Strength, Dexterity and Intelligence. And you have 4 skills: Melee, Ranged, Nature Magic and Combat Magic. You increase one of these 4 skills by using weapons (melee weapons, ranged weapons or 2 types of magic). By using these skills, you increase your attributes. Strength is increased fastest when using only melee, dexterity when using ranged and intelligence when using magic. All items are based on the attributes. And with the automated combat system, you can just run into a bunch of enemies, eat a sandwich in the same time and watch monsters cut into pieces. Amusing...
#2 - The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion & Shivering Isles
This is the third Elder Scrolls game in this list. Of all the Elder Scrolls games, this is the one I've put most hours into, where I've tried out a variety of mods and which made me wanna learn more about the previous games, the lore and everything in between.
As it seems, I haven't reviewed this game either. But I'm not going to do it right now. It's I know I will have installed on my future computer for several years, right next to his bigger and younger brother Skyrim. Wouldn't it be fun to encounter 5 brothers on a street somewhere, each bearing the names of the 5 major releases by Bethesda (Arena, Daggerfall, Morrowind, Oblivion, Skyrim). Like: "Hello! My name is Oblivion! These are my brothers:" *pointing at them* "Arena, Daggerfall, Morrowind and Skyrim."... Nah, this idea is absurd, but still quite amusing.
This game is on the second place simply because I've had so much fun with it. It's the last game in Elder Scrolls franchise, that still has attributes. So I would suggest everyone to try it out and get the feeling how it was before Skyrim.
#1 - Fallout 3 (with all the DLC-s)
And we have reached the highest rank. And with no doubt, Fallout 3 holds the position. New Vegas was good, but this is thousand times better. It's the things that I look for in a role-playing video game. And it's also developed by Bethesda Softworks, my favorite video game developer. I can't write a review for this game, it would be too massive. It would take more than several hours to write it for sure. When I ever plan to do so, I will let you know. Though that would mean I'd need to have a new PC and Fallout 3 installed on it since I tend to use my self-made images and videos in reviews rather than those found on Google. But for now, this is all I'm going to write here.
I hope you enjoyed this list. This blog post means that I am not leaving, but actually staying. I am also starting the 30/30 series tomorrow. So for the next 30 days, there will be up to 2 blog posts per day from me. Isn't that wonderful. And I will hit 100 blog posts pretty soon. Feels good to be back!