Top 10 CRPGs of all time
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December 23rd, 2011, 01:32
Another opening/greeting post, seems like a good place for them. My top 10, no particular order:
1. Starflight - Nobody has =anything= on procedural worlds like Binary Systems did, plus the freakiest, most unexpected and uncomfortable ending ever. Building up my characters, buffing up my ship, exploring farther and farther reaches of space — I played this thing for MONTHS. Literally. Still wonder if Borno got his money back.
2. Ultima IV - first time I ever saw a real alternate reward system in place in an RPG — you simply couldn't win at all if you played it like any other RPG. Great ideas, many of which were never really replicated, though I swore if I fell asleep one more time on the way to the seer I was going to lose at least an eighth.
3. Might & Magic VI - Epic, huge and fun as hell. Hack & slash candy, but VERY good candy.
4. Planescape: Torment - nothing I can add here that hasn't already been said. Wish there were more, kind of glad there isn't.
5. Dungeon Master - Grand-daddy of every dungeon crawl ever since, equal parts adrenaline, desperation and fear. Running out of light yet? Or water? And pass the worm steak. Yeah.
6. Ultima IX - Yeah, I know, controversial choice, but it's here for two reasons. One, the things they =tried= to do were immense, even if they failed, and two, some of the things they =did= accomplish were awesome. Yeah the game design was underwhelming; yeah the technical requirements were massive and there were more bugs in it than an Australian termite mound. But the first time I stood under a crystal dome in the ruins of New Magincia and watched the rain fall on the dome above me as the sun set, I understood where they'd tried to go with the game, and it was awe-inspiring. They get huge points for that.
7. Deus Ex - Great story, great setting, great delivery, and just enough RPG elements supported by the gameplay to make it juicy. It's borderline RPG in many ways but it was such a good hybrid it deserves a spot here.
8. Betrayal at Krondor - just, wow. Huge world, massive story, solid storytelling, fun and frustrating tactical challenges. You name it, it's in here somewhere. Even bad wigs (especially bad wigs?).
9. Arx Fatalis - I know, I should probably have Ultima Underworld in here instead, but I liked the story better, the gameplay was a lot smoother and more fun, and it was just a bit creepier and more atmospheric because the setting was so thoroughly dire.
10. Dragon Age: Origins - such a triumphant return to party-based storytelling, such good ideas, so completely betrayed by what happened at Bioware afterwards. A brilliant opportunity, shamefully squandered. At least the replay value is high.
Honorable mentions: Fallout (loved them all but the setting completely demoralized me), Daggerfall (best of the Bethesdas, I think), Neverwinter Nights (awful stock modules but amazing community creations), Mass Effect / ME 2 (everyone has their guilty pleasures), The Witcher (basically a tie for #10 on the list) and Zangband (which I still play when I'm feeling masochistic).
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Join Date: Dec 2011
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