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Default What was the latest "great RPG" made by an American studio?

November 11th, 2020, 23:56
One thing about Skyrim/Fallout 4. While the base RPG was made by Bethesda, it was the world of modders that made it best in class. This wasn't only Americans by a landslide. Probably what truly makes these games unique is the absolute number of total developers and this number grows yearly.

If European devs want a challenge, try matching the modability of Gamebryo. If you can do that, perhaps there will be a contender one day.
@Stingray Yep, not really sure if Diablo 3 outsold Skyrim. Maybe? I don't track that stuff. It's comparing apples and oranges though. Skyrim is SP/Diablo MP. Still fits the topic though, so good point. Is Blizzard USA? If so, they're the answer over Bethesda for sure.
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November 12th, 2020, 00:07
What American RPG studios are there? Only ones I know top of my head are Obsidian, inXile and Bethesda. Are Arkane American? They have offices in France and America so not really but sort of I guess. The reality is that many developers are multi-national now and so development is drawing from a worldwide talent pool.
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November 12th, 2020, 01:38
Yeah, it's kind of shocking when you realize how few game studios there are in the U.S. making RPGs. Especially given how popular the genre is here.
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November 12th, 2020, 01:46
I'm pretty sure that the last great RPG was the last one released in my twenties.

So many things worked better back then.
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November 12th, 2020, 03:39
Single player games made by Bethesda in the past 20 years are great. If you don't think so, you just didn't mod the game enough!

There's some games on the RPG fringes…

Monolith Productions is in the USA so, if you consider Shadow of Mordor/Shadow of War great RPGs, then there's those. Gearbox is in Texas so you might make a Borderlands game fit. Volition is also USA if you want to call the Saints Row games RPGs.
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November 12th, 2020, 04:20
Hey now! We USA'ians aren't bound by these "genre" limits! We'll follow our muses wherever take us! (Especially since we hired our head of accounting to also act as Vice President of Musing.)
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November 12th, 2020, 04:23
(I deleted my earlier post as it might offend someone.)

Yeah it was a joke post. Sadly though it reflects the western development mindset. That you can add level and stats, and somehow call your game an RPG. It works.

It's time to make some new genre labels or change current genre descriptions.
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November 12th, 2020, 06:20
For me, I believe there might never be a "great" computer game ever again. I need to be moved or engaged by the mechanics in a way which seldom happens. Games just feel too similar and rarely surprise me.

I guess I'm just getting old
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November 12th, 2020, 10:33
Originally Posted by Stingray View Post
You must have forgotten that bjon045 already assured us that's just a conspiracy theory: https://www.rpgwatch.com/forums/show…9&postcount=13
I was specifically referring to Wasteland 4. As both a Fig investor and backer of W3 I have pieced together a few tidbits of information that directly contradict your position. I'm not going to 100% rule it out as things could change under Microsoft but as I said there is currently zero evidence to suggest otherwise.

On the other hand I certainly wouldn't doubt that there might be a Wasteland spinoff in the vein of Avowed.
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November 12th, 2020, 10:40
Originally Posted by SveNitoR View Post
I believe there might never be a "great" computer game ever again.
I believe we might have one in T-minus 28 days.
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November 12th, 2020, 11:19
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
I believe we might have one in T-minus 28 days.
Heh, yeah I hope so. I really enjoyed Witcher 3, and I'll probably enjoy Cyberpunk as well.
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November 12th, 2020, 15:14
Originally Posted by bjon045 View Post
I was specifically referring to Wasteland 4. As both a Fig investor and backer of W3 I have pieced together a few tidbits of information that directly contradict your position. I'm not going to 100% rule it out as things could change under Microsoft but as I said there is currently zero evidence to suggest otherwise.

On the other hand I certainly wouldn't doubt that there might be a Wasteland spinoff in the vein of Avowed.
Couch did mention Wasteland in the post I was quoting. But fair enough, when/if an action 3D Wasteland shows up, it could be a spinoff rather than being W4 or W5 or whatever.
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November 14th, 2020, 04:21
Originally Posted by Couchpotato View Post
It's time to make some new genre labels or change current genre descriptions.
I've been saying that for years! It's tricky, though. The reality is VERY complex so, if you try to make it accurate, it will be too complex to be of any use. Making something that is purposefully inaccurate is… painful.
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November 14th, 2020, 09:33
Originally Posted by Zloth View Post
I've been saying that for years! It's tricky, though. The reality is VERY complex so, if you try to make it accurate, it will be too complex to be of any use. Making something that is purposefully inaccurate is… painful.
We have the binomial nomenclature for species which is routinely used at least by biologists. Nature is more complex than games. It can be done
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November 14th, 2020, 16:42
Oh, it can be done @largh, but I don't think it will get very popular if it needs to be part of a college course! Though it might get popular amongst some of the more extreme fans. I wonder where any of those could be found congregating?
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November 14th, 2020, 20:05
Somewhat of a curious question and more academic than intellectual. I suspect it was a question the recipient thought more about than the person who stated it, stingray probably just writing off the top of his head without pre-preparing for a a factual discussion.

Like when people say "we haven't had a very cold winter for, like, five years now". The truth of the matter is probably that its close to being a correct statement, but it could well have been 4 or 6 years, or maybe there was one very cold winter 4 years ago but all the others have been warmer. The statement results from a general feeling but is expressed factually because it's how people say things. People don't tend to speak always in hard facts.

But, yes, it is the kind of statement that makes for an interesting topic whatever the fact of the matter is. To ask why it is that someone has that general feeling regardless of the fact of the matter.

The reality is you could ask the same question of practically every country on earth. Poland hasn't made a great RPG in the last 5 years. Neither has the UK. Neither has Canada. Germany and the USA have though.

This is more a question about how long modern companies take to make computer games rather than a debate about what is great or focusing on the USA in particular.

I think many of us grew up in gaming in an era when developers made a new game every year, and they did this with teams of 20-50 people and, by today's standards, relatively low budgets.

But as the demand for graphics intensified, so the development teams swelled along with the production times and the budgets to the point now where it seems like eternities between games.

Triple A games now regularly expect customers to wait 5+ years between sequels, and even double A is a guaranteed 3 year wait.

And so this filters down to the indys as well, this idea that you're not expected to 'churn out' games. Most of the quality indys take even longer than AAA games to release the next game, and its often not even a sequel or even the same genre as their first game.

I think InExile are probably the closest developer to what one would term a company that regularly puts out quality RPGs in a timely manner. Sadly, they don't make classic RPGs, but prefer to make niches of niches, just like Troika used to do, so it's not really ideal for the topic of a company that regularly makes great RPGs, but I think they're the closest example of what another developer could do. But none seem to want to do.

I suppose Obsidian are similar to inExile, but that's a longer, much more nuanced discussion really, as Obsidian never really make 'their own thing', they're a sort of cloning company, but, yeah, different discussion really.
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November 15th, 2020, 00:06
Originally Posted by lackblogger View Post
The reality is you could ask the same question of practically every country on earth. Poland hasn't made a great RPG in the last 5 years. Neither has the UK. Neither has Canada. Germany and the USA have though.
What were the games from Germany and the USA that were great in your opinion? I'm just curious.
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November 15th, 2020, 02:30
As lackblogger points out, waiting an eternity for the next game in a series is one of the most aggravating things about modern gaming.

Take quest for glory series which had 5 games, not including remake of the 1st in 1992.
Hero's Quest/Quest for Glory 1989
Quest for Glory II 1990
Quest for Glory III 1992
Quest for Glory IV 1993
Quest for Glory V 1998

The first four games were made in 5 years. The shift to 3d graphics saw the next release be 5 years later.
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November 15th, 2020, 06:09
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
What were the games from Germany and the USA that were great in your opinion? I'm just curious.
For that part of the post I just tried to be objective & just scanned the RPGwatch Game of the Decade top batch of games. The most recent games on there were Pillars 2 (USA) and Elex (Germany).

Whether I think they're great is another matter

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November 15th, 2020, 06:13
Originally Posted by Silver View Post
As lackblogger points out, waiting an eternity for the next game in a series is one of the most aggravating things about modern gaming.

Take quest for glory series which had 5 games, not including remake of the 1st in 1992.
Hero's Quest/Quest for Glory 1989
Quest for Glory II 1990
Quest for Glory III 1992
Quest for Glory IV 1993
Quest for Glory V 1998

The first four games were made in 5 years. The shift to 3d graphics saw the next release be 5 years later.
&

Fallout 1 - 1997
Fallout 2 - 1998
Planesacpe - 1999
Icewind Dale - 2000
Icewind Dale 2 - 2002
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