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#51 Posted by iBePeRFeCT (396 posts) -

That's a pretty tough question. I have a couple of favorites. BioWare is near and dear to my heart with games like Mass Effect, Dragon Age: Origins, Jade Empire and KoTOR. Both Obsidian and CDprojekt make some great games as well.

#52 Posted by Klei (1768 posts) -

Just thinking about Black Isle studio and the era where they were at their primes gives me chills. Those games were nearly perfect. That, and Squaresoft back in the days. But for the modern era? CDProjeckt Red.

#53 Edited by NegativeCero (3039 posts) -

Level 5 is really good, but maybe not best of all time. I guess old Square would be it for me.

#54 Posted by Guided_By_Tigers (8061 posts) -

Square

#55 Posted by ArbitraryWater (12107 posts) -

@Brodehouse said:

I've played the first hour of the Witcher three separate times and it's just not catching with me. I really want to play through that game before Witcher 2 (which seems unanimously better), but... I get to the first town after the Witcher tower and my interest just evaporates each time. I don't know what it is.

As someone who is attempting to slog his way through The Witcher as of now, I can tell you that it gets better. The game still has an awkward, halting sense of pacing, but the story, characters and dialog are good enough that I almost don't care. And the combat is kind of ass, but thankfully it's easy and not a big hassle most of the time.

#56 Posted by BlackLagoon (1460 posts) -

Black Isle, with honorable mention to Obsidian for attempting to carry on the torch.

#57 Posted by Mento (2800 posts) -

Level-5. At least until White Knight Chronicles. I should try the second one before completely dismissing that series though.

Moderator
#58 Posted by Demoskinos (15136 posts) -

Squarenix Don't give a shit what anyone else Thinks I'm a final fantasy fan to the end.

#59 Posted by Zithe (1040 posts) -

@Tennmuerti said:

Skyrim is a phenomenal game and I love it to death however I really don't even consider it to be and RPG anymore.

Uh, what?

#60 Posted by echo13791 (61 posts) -

Bioware, but I foresee my answer changing in the next few years. Or I'll be answering "pre-EA Bioware."

#61 Posted by sopranosfan (1935 posts) -

SquareSoft from the past and Bethesda from today because it is hard to compare the generations and both helped get RPGs where they are now. While I like Bioware games I kind of agree with the person that said they don't really make RPGs anymore and I agree they are shooters and action games with RPG elements in them and yes I know the same could be said about most games today theirs have definitely moved pretty far away from RPG games. Also does Atlus develop games or just publish them? Because if they are a developer then I would probably put them in there as well.

#62 Posted by Redbullet685 (6084 posts) -

Bethesda and Bioware.

#63 Posted by Animasta (14719 posts) -

@sopranosfan: atlus USA is purely a publisher, but Atlus JP is a developer

#64 Posted by Nottle (1915 posts) -

I love Chrono Trigger, FF6, FF4, Super Mario RPG, among many other titles which I still like but less so. So I'd say Square (enix?)

Then I'd say Bethesda because I really like Fallout 3 and Skyrim.

#65 Posted by Marz (5671 posts) -

i'd say square ( even though the past few years haven't been that great but they have a great catalog in their history)...  I'd say i'd follow it up with black isle ( maybe i would have put them higher but their reign as a studio ended too soon).  Then Bioware.

#66 Posted by bbrcher (67 posts) -

@GinjaAssassin said:

Overworks....but only because they made Skies of Arcadia.

I wouldn't mind a sequel or similar game. Definitely one of my favorite Game Cube games.

#67 Posted by ajamafalous (12147 posts) -

Blizzard

#68 Posted by Tennmuerti (8174 posts) -

@Zithe said:

@Tennmuerti said:

Skyrim is a phenomenal game and I love it to death however I really don't even consider it to be and RPG anymore.

Uh, what?

Different people have various things that define what an "RPG" is to them (it is after all one of the worst defined genres in gaming). It's a hefty topic one I won't get into in full detail here, perhaps in a blog at another time. For example do you consider Diablo to be an RPG? some do some don't. Do you consider Alpha Protocol an RPG? some do, some don't.

#69 Posted by tunaburn (1891 posts) -

squaresoft

#70 Posted by Zithe (1040 posts) -

@Tennmuerti said:

@Zithe said:

@Tennmuerti said:

Skyrim is a phenomenal game and I love it to death however I really don't even consider it to be and RPG anymore.

Uh, what?

Different people have various things that define what an "RPG" is to them (it is after all one of the worst defined genres in gaming). It's a hefty topic one I won't get into in full detail here, perhaps in a blog at another time. For example do you consider Diablo to be an RPG? some do some don't. Do you consider Alpha Protocol an RPG? some do, some don't.

I agree it's a very broad and ambiguous label, but I really don't see how Skyrim wouldn't fall into any definition of an RPG. It has plenty of freedom, player choice, character identity, lore, customization, gear, character and skill levels, action, crafting...seems like no matter what you personally require in an RPG, it's got it.

I would consider Diablo to be an Action RPG, but only because I don't have a better term for it. Isometric action game or something might work as well. I think Skyrim is way more of an RPG than Diablo and maybe even Alpha Protocol. To me, a true RPG should allow the freedom to play whatever role the player chooses. If I can go where I want, do what I want, be who I want, I am playing a role. Not just any role, MY role.

I would love to know what your defining characteristics of an RPG are that do not include Skyrim.

#71 Posted by Nux (2420 posts) -

ATLUS

#72 Posted by MasturbatingestBear (1197 posts) -

Square. Their track record makes them stand out compared to anybody else.

#73 Edited by SirOptimusPrime (2030 posts) -

Atlus, BioWare, and Black Isle. I guess Interplay as well. 
 
Why? The SMT franchise, BG2, IWD2, PS:T, Fallout 1 & 2... 
 
Need I say more?

#74 Edited by Jeust (10857 posts) -

Obsidian. Their games sure are janky, but I like the way they think and what they do with the games they create.

#75 Posted by MysteriousBob (6272 posts) -

Bethesda as they're the closest to making real 'role-playing' games.

#76 Posted by Slag (4863 posts) -

Squaresoft > Bioware/Obsidian > Nintendo > Atlus > Betheseda > Konami > Enix > Black Isle > Namco > Sega > Nippon Ichi > Capcom

is roughly where I'd rank 'em off the top of my head

#77 Posted by Mamba219 (157 posts) -

Squaresoft, but in my case largely for their more "obscure" releases, like Final Fantasy Tactics, Vagrant Story, Xenogears...these are all probably in my top 10 favorite games.

I dislike a lot of their games as well, but these really did it for me. The only other RPG I've played worth putting in that elite group would be Morrowind, by Bethesda.

#78 Posted by steveurkel (165 posts) -

none, some studios make good games and then they make bad games and then they make a good game
 
but there is no "every game we make is good" studio.

#79 Posted by Xshinobi (404 posts) -

CD Projekt Red. The Witcher 1 and 2 makes most other RPGs look like a joke.

#80 Posted by Fajita_Jim (1458 posts) -
@AlexW00d said:

People will say Black Isle.

And these people are correct.

I am correct.
#81 Edited by fjor (304 posts) -

bioware - atlus (best combo)

also anyone knows where the dudes that created Anachronox work these days?

#82 Posted by redefaulted (2826 posts) -

@LordXavierBritish said:

Fact: There has never been a bad Mario RPG.

Also Fire Emblem.

What now mother fuckers.

I consider the Paper Mario for Wii a terrible "RPG." Other than that though, you are correct.

#83 Posted by Anund (940 posts) -

Black Isle studios.

#84 Edited by Tennmuerti (8174 posts) -

@Zithe said:

@Tennmuerti said:

@Zithe said:

@Tennmuerti said:

Skyrim is a phenomenal game and I love it to death however I really don't even consider it to be and RPG anymore.

Uh, what?

Different people have various things that define what an "RPG" is to them (it is after all one of the worst defined genres in gaming). It's a hefty topic one I won't get into in full detail here, perhaps in a blog at another time. For example do you consider Diablo to be an RPG? some do some don't. Do you consider Alpha Protocol an RPG? some do, some don't.

I agree it's a very broad and ambiguous label, but I really don't see how Skyrim wouldn't fall into any definition of an RPG. It has plenty of freedom, player choice, character identity, lore, customization, gear, character and skill levels, action, crafting...seems like no matter what you personally require in an RPG, it's got it.

I would consider Diablo to be an Action RPG, but only because I don't have a better term for it. Isometric action game or something might work as well. I think Skyrim is way more of an RPG than Diablo and maybe even Alpha Protocol. To me, a true RPG should allow the freedom to play whatever role the player chooses. If I can go where I want, do what I want, be who I want, I am playing a role. Not just any role, MY role.

I would love to know what your defining characteristics of an RPG are that do not include Skyrim.

Player choice/decisions and their consequences reflected at you by the world. Skyrim has some of that, but very very little. If I can play through a game and see/do basically everything it has to offer (content wise) in 1 run, that's not an RPG to me. The few and far between choices that game offered me were of little actual consequence nor made any real difference. Hell even the biggest mother of all choices in Skyrim which side of the civil war to choose offers little variety, you still go through exact same fort sieges for the other side and at the end neither option has any real effect on the game.

I can be who I want to be in BF3 as much as I can in Skyrim, simple combat otions don't determine an RPG for me. The only freedom I feel in Skyrim is freedom to explore and even that does not last past seeng the same dungeons over and over. Your character has no identity besides one you imagine for him/her in your head. Almost all games these days have lore, Gears has lore. Same with customisation and gear, half the games that come out now have character progression/customisation, almost every shooter does.

Like i said I can do what I want and be who I want just as much in say Battlefield3, I can roleplay a dedicated tank driver and for example never set in foot in jets!

What is your role in Skyrim? What makes your character differ from any other besides the skills you employ in combat and maybe a couple skills outside of combat?

#85 Posted by TheDudeOfGaming (6078 posts) -

@AlexW00d said:

People will say Black Isle.

And these people are correct.

#86 Posted by Village_Guy (2662 posts) -

Biowarezz... hmm, I want to say Blizzard for some reason but they don't really make RPGs... Ah what the hell I'll go with Blizzard.

World of Warcraft is an RPG and Warcraft 3 have some RPG elements to it...

#87 Posted by falling_fast (2279 posts) -

Black Isle

#88 Posted by PenguinDust (12626 posts) -

Bioware in the West. I know everyone hates them now (it's chic) but I've been playing their games for more than a decade so I'm not tossing them down the well just yet.

Hard to pick in the East...probably Level-5. Really loved Dark Cloud 2 and Dragon Quest IX. Either them or Atlus for the SMT franchise.

#89 Edited by Zithe (1040 posts) -

@Tennmuerti said:

Player choice/decisions and their consequences reflected at you by the world. Skyrim has some of that, but very very little. If I can play through a game and see/do basically everything it has to offer (content wise) in 1 run, that's not an RPG to me. The few and far between choices that game offered me were of little actual consequence nor made any real difference. Hell even the biggest mother of all choices in Skyrim which side of the civil war to choose offers little variety, you still go through exact same fort sieges for the other side and at the end neither option has any real effect on the game.

I can be who I want to be in BF3 as much as I can in Skyrim, simple combat otions don't determine an RPG for me. The only freedom I feel in Skyrim is freedom to explore and even that does not last past seeng the same dungeons over and over. Your character has no identity besides one you imagine for him/her in your head. Almost all games these days have lore, Gears has lore. Same with customisation and gear, half the games that come out now have character progression/customisation, almost every shooter does.

Like i said I can do what I want and be who I want just as much in say Battlefield3, I can roleplay a dedicated tank driver and for example never set in foot in jets!

What is your role in Skyrim? What makes your character differ from any other besides the skills you employ in combat and maybe a couple skills outside of combat?

My role in Skyrim is whatever I want it to be. My character differs from yours by the actions I choose to take and the way I behave in the world (not just in combat). If a guy in this little village needs help with something, do I choose to help him? Do I ignore him? Do I kill him and take everything he owns? If I kill him, is that not saved in the state of the world and reflected for the rest of my playthrough?

I will admit that the game would benefit from the quest lines making a bigger impact on the world, but in cases where game worlds really are majorly changed like Mass Effect (saving/not saving the council) or The Witcher 2 (helping/not helping Iorveth) I feel like I am really just choosing one of the predetermined roles that have been handed to me by the writers of the game. I am not really carving out my own path as I do in Skyrim. I think it would be really tough to do both at the same time, but I think Bethesda will get there when they are technically able to.

I find your BF3 comparison interesting. I would argue that if you are playing that tank driver and sticking with that mind set that you are in fact role playing. Of course, BF3 doesn't go nearly as far in this direction as Skyrim does. There's really no leaving the battlefield. All you can choose to do is run around in the arena and kill dudes. In Skyrim, there are villages, caves, hideouts, forests, mountains, castles, etc. to explore and quests if you choose to do them. I have way more freedom to do what I want in the world.

Edit: I will also address the "You can do everything in one play through" point. It's true you can do most of the content in one play through if you choose, but that's totally on you. I personally have multiple characters for that reason. It would not feel right for me to take my noble, world saving battle mage and join the Dark Brotherhood. I have a separate character for that. I play their roles differently and take different actions accordingly.

#90 Posted by Tennmuerti (8174 posts) -

@Zithe said:

My role in Skyrim is whatever I want it to be. My character differs from yours by the actions I choose to take and the way I behave in the world (not just in combat). If a guy in this little village needs help with something, do I choose to help him? Do I ignore him? Do I kill him and take everything he owns? If I kill him, is that not saved in the state of the world and reflected for the rest of my playthrough?

To take a quest or not to take? Yeah sorry that's not choice/consequence for me. That's avoiding content on purpose. Also btw if you kill him nothing will change, he will be replaced by his replica in a few days :) There are actually a few quests in Skyrim that can play out slightly differently, but again nothing much will ever change. It's a very static jorney/world all told.

I find your BF3 comparison interesting. I would argue that if you are playing that tank driver and sticking with that mind set that you are in fact role playing. Of course, BF3 doesn't go nearly as far in this direction as Skyrim does. There's really no leaving the battlefield. All you can choose to do is run around in the arena and kill dudes. In Skyrim, there are villages, caves, hideouts, forests, mountains, castles, etc. to explore and quests if you choose to do them. I have way more freedom to do what I want in the world.

Yeah i wasn't comparing their world content. Simply aproaching it from roleplaying perspective. Saying that you are deciding to play a role in a game like say a sneaky thief character hense it's a roleplaying game holds no weight to me. Since I can say exactly the same of as in my example BF3, not just in use of weapons but in terms of my soldiers character, am I a selfless medic that will sacrifice his own life to help a teammate, am I a tactical soldier, carefully moving forward, checking corners eliminating the enemy and securing myself first, or am i playing like a rambo always pushing the objective? Freedom to explore Skytim has aplenty, it's pretty much a pinacle of craft in this regard, one of the reason I love the game. But exploration of it's world has nothing to do with my character as a character, it doesn't define me.

Edit: I will also address the "You can do everything in one play through" point. It's true you can do most of the content in one play through if you choose, but that's totally on you. I personally have multiple characters for that reason. It would not feel right for me to take my noble, world saving battle mage and join the Dark Brotherhood. I have a separate character for that. I play their roles differently and take different actions accordingly.

I think that's a perfectly valid and interesting way to play Skyrim, creating your own sort of metagame and bringing in your own roleplay. It's just not what defines an RPG to me, like the example above I can choose to roleplay like that even in BF3. The game has to not only facilitate but acknowledge my differences in action of my various characters for it to be an RPG by my definition. and I can't even express the personality of my character in Skyrim, what is his/her attitude, morals, outlook on the world? There are no vessels provided for that, save not taking quests and maybe killing/robbing npcs.

#91 Posted by StarvingGamer (8555 posts) -

Squaresoft

On Final Fantasy Tactics alone

#92 Posted by laserbolts (5365 posts) -

Bioware or Square its hard to choose.

#93 Posted by kurtbro900 (116 posts) -

Wow, didn't expect so many people to say black isle. Anyway, black isle.

#94 Posted by mordukai (7185 posts) -

Black Isle.

#95 Posted by altairre (1280 posts) -

@gladspooky said:

Bioware no longer makes RPGs, and Bethesda's got its own problems.

And this is where Jeff would say that video game genres are fucked. Anyway, for me it´s definitely Bioware.

#96 Edited by NaCl (108 posts) -

@uniform said:

Squaresoft. Sorry, I know it's not going to be a popular answer, but it was once upon a time.

Yupe, a pity they upped and vanished after releasing Final Fantasy X in 2001.

#97 Posted by s10129107 (1211 posts) -

Baulder's Gate + Dragon Age + Mass Effect = Bioware is awesome.

#98 Posted by phrosnite (3518 posts) -

This is a funny thread. People mentioning Blizzard? Ha, even more funny.

#99 Posted by Zelyre (1275 posts) -

Black Isle, and by extension of that, Obsidian.

Fallout 1, 2, and Planescape are must play games. New Vegas feels like it takes place in a living, breathing world. It kind of ruined Skyrim for me. New Vegas had tons of fun and interesting characters, factions, locations, and stories. Skyrim had... the thieve's guild.

#100 Posted by Stonyman65 (2869 posts) -

Black Isle. You could argue that they are the ones who started what we consider the "modern" RPG.

Bioware is pretty good too.