I just started playing Phantasy Star for the Sega Master System off of the Sonic Ultimate Genesis Collection for the first time. It reminded me of how much I love old school RPGs. I broke out my SNES cartridges and gave ChronoTrigger, FF2, FF3, Secret of Mana, and Secret of Evermore great big hugs of loves!!!!
Western, party-focused, turn-based. They don't do a lot like it anymore. X-COM is the only example I can pull recently. Maybe Avernum: Escape From The Pit, but that's pretty low-tier. They either do Single Character (like the Elder Scrolls), or they do Real Time With Pause. If you're going to make it a real time game, just make it an action game with stats so I don't have to deal with bullshit pathfinding.
None of those matter as long as I can customize and overlevel like fuck. I want to play around with setups and make the most broken fucking combos possible. So games like FF7, Disgaea, DSouls and to some extent games like Diablo. But I dislike the RNG parts of those games. :/
That's a really bizzare way to separate RPGs and why people would prefer one over the other. Isometric RPGs can be hugely different, and 3D third person perceived RPGs can also be completely different games with almost nothing alike; while certain games have both 1st and 3rd person perspecive, further yet some 3D rpgs are very similar to 2d isometric counterparts, and many games even straddle the line of being both.
The approach to core mechanics, narrative and game play is imo why different people like different types RPGs. As these can make far more of a difference and create hugely varied types of games.
Also Diablo is not an RPG, labeling the venerated isometric old school RPGs with such "diablo style" makes me want to puke a little in me mouth. :/
I prefer the RPG you play with pen & paper.
Also, I never thought of Diablo as an RPG, nor do I Darksiders. Mass Effect is, well... it comes close enough I guess. To me there is more you gotta be able to do than simply put skillpoints in a game to call it an RPG. The player has to be able to make choices as to his characters motivation, otherwise you aint playing a role. You are just watching a story unfold.