10 Great RPG Games of All Time to Replay in September 2022
RPGs are among the most universally loved genres of video games. These games pack a punch, allowing players to immerse themselves in a fantasy world and carve out unique stories.
The best RPG games are those that never push players to move on to the next quest. It’s more about character building, world design, and lore that can keep them engaged for days.
Additionally, RPG games come in all shapes and sizes; there are JRPGs, ARPGs, tactical RPGs, 90s 3D platformer RPGs and many more. It is one of the most diverse genres.
It’s hard to put together a list of the best RPGs of all time. However, here is a mixed compilation of some of the greatest RPGs made over the past two decades. These games are still relevant today and can be chosen to occupy September.
Note: This article is subjective and reflects the opinion of the author.
Ten captivating RPGs to pick up this fall
1) Pokemon Emerald (2004)
- Available on: Game Boy Advance, Android
For many gamers, Game Boy Advance’s Pokemon games were the first taste of immersive open-world role-playing. While Pokemon Red & Blue and Pokemon Sapphire & Ruby are all legendary games in their own right, it’s Pokemon Emerald which is the built-in and more enhanced version of Pokemon Sapphire & Ruby.
Pokemon Emerald presents the third generation of pocket monsters from the popular Pokemon manga series. The title takes place on the tropical islands of Japan. Users are tasked with exploring the Hoenn region, capturing the strongest Pokémon team, and collecting all eight Gym Badges by defeating all Gym Masters.
The storyline follows a similar progression to previous Pokemon titles of eventually defeating the Elite Four, coupled with an enticing Legendary Pokemon side story.
Like Pokemon Ruby & Sapphire, Pokemon Emerald also features LAN connectivity areas under Poke Centers and Poke Marts spread across the map in cities and towns.
2) World of Warcraft (2004)
- Available on: Microsoft Windows, macOS
Growing up in the late 90s and early 20s meant it was a joy to learn about World of Warcraft. It is an MMORPG with the fantasy continent of Azeroth inhabited by many races besides humans like Elves, Orcs, Centaurs, Undead and hundreds of others.
World of Warcraft lets players create their own unique avatar and explore the ever-expanding open world of Azeroth in third-person perspective, full of lore, magic, dungeons, and mazes to unravel. Diving into World of Warcraft is truly a magical experience worth sacrificing countless sleepless nights.
Since its launch, the World of Warcraft franchise has continued to expand its universe with several expansions. Even two decades after its launch, the franchise enjoys great popularity with millions of active users, making it one of the most successful MMORPGs of all time.
3) Diablo 2: Risen (2021)
- Available on: Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 5, Microsoft Windows, Xbox Series X|S
Blizzard Entertainment, the creators of World of Warcraft, did a fantastic job in their third-person hack-and-slash RPG, Diablo 2. Released in 2000, the game dominated the genre for the entire decade.
It was a pleasant surprise for players to not follow a linear story progression and simply hack and slash through the open world as they wished.
Diablo 2: Resurrected is the remastered version of the timeless classic, made with advanced game engines. The title also includes the Lord of Destruction expansion of the old classic.
4) Fallout: New Vegas (2010)
- Available on: PlayStation 3, Windows, Xbox 360
Fallout: New Vegas is arguably the best game in the Fallout series. It’s a first-person shooter RPG that offers one of the most detailed open-world maps.
Only a few first-person shooter RPGs managed to pull off a brilliant storyline combined with flawless open world and action-packed gameplay. Fallout: New Vegas belongs to the upper echelons of these games.
Set in an apocalyptic world suffering from a post-nuclear disaster, every side quest and minor character players encounter in the open world of Fallout: New Vegas is given considerable attention and detail.
More importantly, Fallout: New Vegas leaves various paths open for users on how they would like to navigate and complete their quests. This is a game every RPG fan must try at least once.
5) Mass Effect 2 (2010)
- Available on: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Microsoft Windows
A sequel to the original Mass Effect game, Mass Effect 2 is a traditional third-person RPG with a heavy emphasis on cinematic cutscenes and character dialogue. In this third-person shooter, players take on the role of Commander Shepherd traversing a vast galaxy.
Set in the 22nd century, interstellar travel is possible. The human race is part of an intergalactic conglomerate called the Citadel Council, which includes other alien races such as the Asari and Turians.
There are other equally attractive independent breeds, such as the Reptilian Krogan. In Mass Effect 2, users will come face to face with the hostile race of AI networks.
The gameplay involves futuristic space combat where players can lead up to two gangs. Most of the missions are combat quests involving interactions with very well-written NPC characters.
6) The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim (2011)
- Available on: Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Microsoft Windows, Xbox 360, PlayStation 5, Xbox X|S, PlayStation 3
Elder Scrolls is one of the oldest RPG series around. The franchise has a huge cult following and has produced some brilliant RPG titles, including The Elder Scrolls: Morrowind, one of the first RPGs to have a massive open world.
However, The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim is arguably the best iteration of the franchise yet in terms of the size of the open world and the creativity in terms of the lore it manages to provide.
The visual brilliance of the open world is a sight to behold for this era, and the gameplay environment never seems to get old.
It’s hard to argue about the impact of The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim over the past decade. It single-handedly inspired a bunch of similar open-world titles to come in the 2010s.
7) Borderlands 2 (2012)
- Available on: Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, macOS, PlayStation Vita, Linux, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Android, Nintendo Switch
It’s impressive how Borderlands 2 manages to offer so much in a single package. Not only has the game spawned a subgenre, sniper-looters, but exploring the artistically crafted world of Pandora and defeating its magnificent beasts is a memorable experience in itself.
At the end of the day, Borderlands 2 is a first-person shooter RPG where players take on the role of one of four playable Vault Hunters against Handsome Jack and his evil Hyperion Corporation, who have complete control on Pandora.
Each Vault Hunter has unique skills, abilities, and weaknesses, and once players complete the game with one Vault Hunter, they can choose to replay the scenario with another.
Borderlands 2 features an engrossing plot that doesn’t falter as players traverse the open world. This September, try this underrated first-person shooter.
8) The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt (2015)
- Available on: Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, Microsoft Windows
As the third take on The Witcher series, developer CD Projekt Red has done a fabulous job in The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt creating a spectacularly huge open world spanning an entire continent with unique geographic regions.
Playing from a third-person perspective, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt’s main story revolves around the life of Geralt, who goes on a journey alongside his longtime partner Yennefer in search of Ciri.
The medieval open world contains hundreds of side missions and monster hunting quests, enough for users to set aside the main story quests for a few days and roam the continent for fun.
9) The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (2017)
- Available on: nintendo switch
The pleasant green, hilly landscape set in a dreamy open world of Hyrule in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is a sight to behold. The game has inspired many others to follow suit and manages to deliver an exhilarating open world with complete freedom to explore.
Right from the start, players can explore various locations, from grassy meadows to thick dark forests and high mountains. Every item they encounter, from apples to books to stones, is a resource that can be used in the game.
Above all, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild stands out from its contemporaries when it comes to the highly interactive and responsive open-world environment that the RPG title manages to offer players.
10) Assassin’s Creed Odyssey (2018)
- Available on: PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, Google Stadia, Microsoft Windows, Amazon Luna
Assassin’s Creed Odyssey is a genre-defining game that completely saturates the open-world action-adventure RPG genre. Developers Ubisoft have done a spectacular job recreating the setting and atmosphere of the Peloponnesian War – a historically accurate recreation of the struggle for supremacy over the Greek peninsula that took place primarily between Athens and Sparta in classical times. .
It is an action and role-playing adventure where users can take on the role of mercenary warrior Alexios. From the start, they are forced to choose between Sparta and Athens. Once done, they are free to set off on an endless journey through the beautifully created Greek countryside.
The scale of the open world in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey is incredibly huge, and every little decision made in the storyline can come back to haunt players late in the game.
Many of the equally dangerous side missions and main quests can be approached in a variety of ways. Decisions made in some of the quests ultimately have the potential to change the course of the ensuing struggle for supremacy between many of the Greek city-states.