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November 28th, 2006, 06:36
I love these lists, and someday I'd also like to see everybody's "Ten Most Hated."

I also started playing in the late nineties and missed a lot of the old games. But I did manage to hit many of the classics after that—I'm only listing games I finished:

1. Icewind Dale series—liked them better than BG for the simple reason that I rolled the entire party and just got down to business. Linear but very good at what they did. Probably would not rate them so high if I hadn't slogged thru Baldur's Gate hating Imoen and Jaheira.

2. Might & Magic 6 & 7—again, a hand-picked party, lots of diverse questing and exploring, and a nice magic system.

3. Planescape:Torment—for all the usual reasons.

4. Arcanum—really an original take on the genre, and very involving. My elf-girl was vividly real to me by the end, and none of the joinable NPCs was overly irritating.

5.Temple of Elemental Evil—the best turn-based combat, and most disturbing frogs.

6.Gothic-again, an original take, a game with its own feel, and a huge and sometimes unforgiving world. It was a true example of role-playing for me, a female, as at the end I really had stopped thinking as one, and cooked up my lonely fried meat while sharpening my sword and wondering if I would make it to the next town without once washing the frying pan or wondering what to wear.

7.Evil Islands-this was a very old school little game and had a few tweaks that made it memorable, like crafting your own items—and it was damn hard!

8. Baldurs Gate II_Shadows of Amn & Throne of Baal—a classic, and much as I dislike a lot of the biowarianisms(find four pieces of the artifact and return them to the judge in the main square, while listening to your NPC's complain or fight with each other, etc,etc) this was a well-crafted end to the series and had a little bit of everything.

9.Diablo II:Lord of Destruction—just too much candy, and I don't really think of it as a true rpg, but after you've played through Hell difficulty, the world is a different and better place.

10.I would like to put Wizardry 8 here, but I have not to date finished it. I intend to try again someday tho—this was a game that really made today's emphasis on graphics look silly, because the graphics were at the pixel-counting levl, yet you couldn't stop playing even though death seemed to occur with monotonous regularity.

Honorable mention goes to Kult(Heretic Kingdoms), and Darkstone(more an action title, but again a game-over-graphics number)

Where there's smoke, there's mirrors.
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