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Links: 20 Essential RPGs

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A little while back, Gamasutra (http://www.gamasutra.com) had a feature on Essential RPGs that a game designer should play. Excellent feature:

http://www.gamasutra.com/view/feature/4066/game_design_essentials_20_rpgs.php

Let's see how I stack up! Bold if I've played it, Italics if I haven't.

Bonus:

  1. Dungeons & Dragons (PnP) - Haven't played in, oh, 25 years (not counting computer versions), but definitely where it started for me.


Western:

  1. Wizardry (series) - Not sure why this made it instead of other like minded games like Bard's Tale. I guess the series went on longer. I'm guessing not worth going back to play now.

  2. Ultima (series) - I've completed 4 (a classic), and played 3-7. I really should go back and play 7 all the way through.

  3. Wasteland - Awesome, awesome game. The setting (post apocalyptic) made it really novel.




  4. D&D Gold Box series - I finished "Pool of Radiance", and played another one or two. These were competent, but less engrossing for me than some others.

  5. Quest For Glory - I played a bunch of the Sierra adventure games, but not this one.

  6. Might & Magic - Played an older one, never finished, didn't really make a big impression.

  7. Nethack - Never really caught the Nethack bug; preferred Moria or Angband, or even old-school Rogue.

  8. Elder Scrolls (series) - Finished Morrowind. Fooled around with Daggerfall, but after it was too dated to be much fun. Waiting for a more powerful laptop before I take on Oblivion.

  9. Baldur's Gate (series) - Still the best single player RPG I've played. I'll avoid waxing poetic so as not to bore regular readers, who have probably heard enough about BG already.




  10. World of Warcraft - Can you believe I've never played this? I really should, just to check out the craftmanship if nothing else. But I never have had the time or desire to get sucked in.


Japanese:

Well, I haven't played a single one of these, so no point making comments. Here's the list:

  1. Dragon Quest

  2. Dragon Slayer

  3. Fire Emblem

  4. Final Fantasy

  5. Mother, a.k.a. Earthbound

  6. Pokemon (series)

  7. Mystery Dungeon

  8. Square's 16-bit RPGs

  9. Tales games (series)

  10. Nippon-Ichi RPGs


I suppose I should go back and play one of the Japanese RPGs, just to see what's up. Final Fantasy 7, maybe?

Anyways, 8 for 21. What kind of an RPG designer do I think I am, anyways?
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It looks like we've got similar tastes in games, although you've played a lot more of the old school PC RPGs than me. I might have been too young to really get into old ones when they were out; they were all just pages and pages of numbers. It was like playing with a spreadsheet. They also tended to be brutally unforgiving.

Quest for Glory is worth playing. I was a big adventure game fan, and that was the best of the Sierra series.

As for the console RPGs, I was late to the party there too. I've played a few on the list though. Fire Emblem is fun, but it's more tactical turn-based game than RPG. I like the Tales series, altohugh I'm not entrely sure why. And I'd really recommend playing Pokemon; the original games were actually quite brilliant IMO (not sure about the latest games, haven't played them).

I've also never played World of Warcraft or Final Fantasy 7, and also wonder if I should just because everyone else has. I'm not sure where to get your hands on Final Fantasy 7 these days, though. It's a lot easier to play some of the SNES era games from the Wii Shop or to get the older Final Fantasy games for a handheld.

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Original post by Trapper Zoid
It looks like we've got similar tastes in games, although you've played a lot more of the old school PC RPGs than me. I might have been too young to really get into old ones when they were out; they were all just pages and pages of numbers. It was like playing with a spreadsheet. They also tended to be brutally unforgiving.


Yeah, I was playing the old ones when I was a teenager; probably tougher to get into them now. I do remember that Bard's Tale was _really_ hard at the start; just surviving to the initial dungeon was a challenge. But it reverted to a more normal difficulty after that. Probably not worth playing now, though.

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Quest for Glory is worth playing. I was a big adventure game fan, and that was the best of the Sierra series.


Interesting. Of the ones I played, I'd probably vote for Leisure Suit Larry 1.

Quote:
As for the console RPGs, I was late to the party there too. I've played a few on the list though. Fire Emblem is fun, but it's more tactical turn-based game than RPG. I like the Tales series, altohugh I'm not entrely sure why. And I'd really recommend playing Pokemon; the original games were actually quite brilliant IMO (not sure about the latest games, haven't played them).


I don't have (or want) a console, so I can really only play games that have a PC version, which rules a lot out. I guess I could buy them and then emulate them with a clear conscience.

Quote:
I've also never played World of Warcraft or Final Fantasy 7, and also wonder if I should just because everyone else has. I'm not sure where to get your hands on Final Fantasy 7 these days, though. It's a lot easier to play some of the SNES era games from the Wii Shop or to get the older Final Fantasy games for a handheld.


Holy crap, I had no idea! The FF7 PC version is going for $203 on Amazon! Even on EBay it's half that. Maybe I'll reconsider that plan...

Geoff

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Original post by gdunbar
Interesting. Of the ones I played, I'd probably vote for Leisure Suit Larry 1.

Quest for Glory had a nice mix of serious drama with very silly humour. The blend of RPG and adventure game worked well. Plus it tended to have at least three solutions to the key situations due to different classes you play; fighters tended to be direct (kill the monster, knock down the wall), magic users had to use their spell set creatively (charm or distract the monster, force bolt or levitate over the wall), thieves tended to avoid the problem (sneak past or drug the monster, climb the wall or use the sidedoor).

AGD Interactive has a fan remake of Quest for Glory II. I haven't actually tried it yet (it's on a long list of games to play), but given the quality of their other remakes I'm sure it's both true and an improvement of the original. QfG2 was my favourite of the series too.

Quote:
I don't have (or want) a console, so I can really only play games that have a PC version, which rules a lot out. I guess I could buy them and then emulate them with a clear conscience.

There's a few ports around, but they're hard to come by. Most I've seen aren't on that list. You can get Septerra Core from Good Old Games, but even though that's a console inspired RPC that was a PC original (and frankly was rather dull). I got a copy of Grandia II for the PC as one of those discount special series, a get 3 games for A$20 deal. It was okay and has a better than usual combat system, but it's not on your list.

These days the Wii is probably best for playing old console games; it's got a good range of Nintendo and Sega titles. I've been thinking of getting a more modern handheld device for some of the remakes of older titles, but it's hard to justify them just for that.

And I know what you mean about the FF7 game. I'd really like to play it, but tracking down a legit version just doesn't seem worth it given I'm sure there will be an official remake someday. Even if you did shell out for the PC version, good luck getting it to run under Windows XP or Vista. [rolleyes]

I migjt just content myself by reading through an extensive walkthrough...

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Original post by gdunbar
Interesting. Of the ones I played, I'd probably vote for Leisure Suit Larry 1.

Quest for Glory had a nice mix of serious drama with very silly humour. The blend of RPG and adventure game worked well. Plus it tended to have at least three solutions to the key situations due to different classes you play; fighters tended to be direct (kill the monster, knock down the wall), magic users had to use their spell set creatively (charm or distract the monster, force bolt or levitate over the wall), thieves tended to avoid the problem (sneak past or drug the monster, climb the wall or use the sidedoor).

AGD Interactive has a fan remake of Quest for Glory II. I haven't actually tried it yet (it's on a long list of games to play), but given the quality of their other remakes I'm sure it's both true and an improvement of the original. QfG2 was my favourite of the series too.

Quote:
I don't have (or want) a console, so I can really only play games that have a PC version, which rules a lot out. I guess I could buy them and then emulate them with a clear conscience.

There's a few ports around, but they're hard to come by. Most I've seen aren't on that list. You can get Septerra Core from Good Old Games, but even though that's a console inspired RPC that was a PC original (and frankly was rather dull). I got a copy of Grandia II for the PC as one of those discount special series, a get 3 games for A$20 deal. It was okay and has a better than usual combat system, but it's not on your list.

These days the Wii is probably best for playing old console games; it's got a good range of Nintendo and Sega titles. I've been thinking of getting a more modern handheld device for some of the remakes of older titles, but it's hard to justify them just for that.

And I know what you mean about the FF7 game. I'd really like to play it, but tracking down a legit version just doesn't seem worth it given I'm sure there will be an official remake someday. Even if you did shell out for the PC version, good luck getting it to run under Windows XP or Vista. [rolleyes]

I migjt just content myself by reading through an extensive walkthrough...

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