My Favorite RPGs.

I've enjoyed playing RPGs since the days of Dragon Warrior on the NES.  Here's a list of my favorite RPGs, covering a variety of gameplay types and subgenres.

List items

  • Quite possibly my favorite game ever, Valkyrie Profile combines unique 2D platforming and an engaging combat system with a story that is alternately heartbreaking and heartwarming.

  • Final Fantasy VI set what I considered the standard for a quality RPG for nearly a decade. A large, diverse cast, engaging story, and loads of memorable moments. Final Fantasy VI is in my estimation the best game in the series.

  • And right behind Final Fantasy VI, Final Fantasy IV took the series in a new direction with an emphasis on story, greatly increasing the complexity while making the characters more memorable and endearing. Cecil's struggle to become a Paladin is one of the defining stories of the series.

  • No RPG that came before Chrono Trigger was quite like it. A unique combat system, a colorful world seen from multiple eras and more endings than could be counted on both hands are just some of the reasons to play this game.

  • Take the action-filled dungeon crawler click-fest that was Diablo, then make it bigger, better, and more engaging.

  • Dragon Warrior III, or Dragon Quest III, is easily my favorite in the series, if only for the ability to completely customize my party at the start of the game. Roam the countryside with a party of goof-offs? I can do that!

  • The first PC RPG I played based on the D&D license, Icewind Dale was not an easy game. I started over more times than I care to think, but it was so engaging that I couldn't bring myself to give up.

  • Two words, baby: Horse Wiener! Disgaea burst onto the scene with insane game mechanics with a level cap of 9,999, the ability to overturn senate votes by force, and some of the wittiest, disarmingly absurd RPG dialogue I've ever read.

  • This is the game that I credit for introducing me to the Megami Tensei franchise. Persona 3 came along at just the right time for me, introducing me to characters and gameplay that made a large impact on how I view games today.

  • Like Persona 3, but better in most every way, with an engaging murder mystery plot and a cast full of likable characters. To the Meat Dimension, and beyond!

  • This game isn't just well-designed by modern standards. Its ability to feel modern while adhering to the Dragon Quest tropes of old makes it an incredible nostalgia trip that doesn't depend on rose-tinted glasses to be enjoyable.

  • Fallout 2 is a little dated by today's standards, but there's a reason that it was the first game I bought off of Good Old Games. Its interesting world, strategic combat, and open-ended structure provide for a lot of fun and tense moments.

  • War of the Lions improved on the one thing that set the original PS1 release lacked. A stellar translation worthy of the story, filled with political intrigue, betrayal after betrayal, and motives within motives. That the gameplay is still addictive despite its age is a testament to how fun it is.

  • An action RPG, Secret of Mana was unique in its day for allowing up to three players to play together. The lush, colorful graphics and beautiful music still hold up, and while simple, the story gives me a lot of fond memories.

  • One of the best RPGs on the original Game Boy, Final Fantasy Legend III, actually a SaGa game, had depth to spare, a large world to explore, and it could all be done on the go.

  • A game that subverts many of the standard RPG tropes, Nocturne is a challenging game set in an interesting, post-apocalyptic world.

  • A fun western RPG that's much like D&D in everything but name, Dragon Age sets the stage for what could become an entertaining franchise.

  • More than just a goofy crossover game, Kingdom Hearts II ups the ante with a more complex story and characters without sacrificing that Disney charm.

  • An engaging story and world filled with memorable characters, Path of Radiance ultimately serves as the warm up to Radiant Dawn, but is an excellent game in every way.