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Role-Playing (RPG)

Description

Role-playing video games are descendants of pen-and-paper RPGs. In those games character development is the main driving gameplay mechanic. Typically one or more characters are created and shaped by the player, then embark on a series of encounters that increase the inventory, wealth, or combat statistics of said character(s).

A role-playing game is not just any game in which the player "plays a role", i.e. controls a character and participates in exploration and narrative. Rather, the defining characteristic of role-playing games is player-dependent character growth. A role-playing game can be seen as such when player-controlled characters become stronger ("levels up") because of the player's actions (usually depending on experience points received for vanquishing enemies), rather than being upgraded automatically as dictated by the storyline. The degree of the player's involvement in shaping the characters may vary considerably: some RPGs offer vast customization possibilities, while others tend to simplify and even nearly automatize the process.

Traditional RPGs have turn-based combat and a fantasy setting (Wizardry series, Ultima series, Roguelikes, etc.). Later, other settings were introduced, and many RPGs - such as Diablo - began favoring action-based combat. In these games, Action is used as a modifier to the RPG genre.

By the late 1980's, the genre has been distinctly split into two main sub-genres: Western and Japanese (sometimes called console-style) RPG. Western RPGs typically favored free exploration and player-made decisions, while Japanese RPGs focused on following a linear story line. Japanese RPGs also tended to retain simple turn-based combat mechanics, and in many cases also random enemy encounters.

In many early Western RPGs the player was given the option to create an entire party of characters (usually up to six). Ultima games introduced the possibility of recruiting initially non-playable characters (NPCs) with their own personalities from the game world into the party. Beginning with Phantasy Star, Japanese RPGs followed this template and even elevated it to their cornerstone mechanic.

Late 1990's saw a "RPG revival" in the West. Fallout greatly expanded the usage of non-combat statistics and moral decisions during gameplay, while Baldur's Gate popularized real-time party-based combat.
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sorted in ascending orderGame Title
Revenant Windows Front Cover

Windows (1999)

It was time when you were happy, with your woman. But she left this mortal plane, and you lost your...

Revengers of Vengeance SEGA CD Front Cover

SEGA CD (1994)

Revengers of Vengeance is a combination of RPG, vertical shooter, and fighting game with a fantasy/anime style. There are ten...

PC-98 (1993)

Revery are people who know the secret way of magic. Few of those are left in the world, and unfortunately,...

PC-98 (1995)

Revival Xanadu is a remake of Xanadu: Dragon Slayer II.The remake distinguishes itself with the more detailed, graphically more advanced...

PC-98 (1995)

Revival Xanadu II: Remix is a remake of Xanadu: Scenario 2.The remake is done using graphics and engine identical to...

RF Online Windows Front Cover

Windows (2006)

As one of the three factions vying for control over the planetary sector known as 'Novus', your job is to...

Rhapsody: A Musical Adventure PlayStation Front Cover

PlayStation (1998), PSP (2006), PlayStation 3 (2006) and PS Vita (2012)

In this game the player controls Cornet, a young orphaned girl who can animate lifeless puppets by playing on her...

Rhapsody: A Musical Adventure Nintendo DS Front Cover

Nintendo DS (2008)

This is a remake of the original PSone game. While this version still sports the same storyline it features new...

Rhapsody of Zephyr Windows Front Cover

Windows (1998), PlayStation 2 (2004) and Dreamcast (2001)

Rhapsody of Zephyr is a Korean-made role-playing game and a side-story in The War of Genesis series. Unlike most other...

Richard Garriott's Tabula Rasa Windows Front Cover

Windows (2007)

It appeared out of nowhere. Life was normal on Earth when a big shadow appeared on the sky and blocked...

Richard Garriott's Tabula Rasa (Limited Collector's Edition) Windows Front Cover

Windows (2007)

This limited collector's edition includes: Limited Collector's Edition DVD case with Richard Garriott's Tabula Rasa installation DVD and behind-the-scenes DVD-ROM...

Richard Garriott's Tabula Rasa (Pre-Order Bonus Pack) Windows Front Cover

Windows (2007)

Richard Garriott's Tabula Rasa is a large-scale science fiction massively multiplayer online game, pitting the player as a soldier fighting...

Ridegear Guybrave PlayStation Front Cover

PlayStation (1997)

Colonel Dahar, leader of the Mars Imperial Army, has brought his forces to attack Earth, seeking to take the remains...

RIFT Windows Front Cover

Windows (2011)

RIFT is a 3D MMORPG set in the fantasy world Telara and requires a monthly subscription to play next to...

RIFT: Storm Legion Windows Front Cover

Windows (2012)

RIFT: Storm Legion is an add-on for RIFT. The story is about the Infinity Gate which can be used to...

PC-88 (1986), PC-98 (1986), Sharp X1 (1986) and FM-7 (1986)

The continent of Riglas is inhabited by two races: Miria and Galt. For years they have been fighting each other...

Riglord Saga 2 SEGA Saturn Front Cover

SEGA Saturn (1996)

The sequel to Blazing Heroes, originally known as Riglord Saga. You play the role of Mieu, the princess of Dragoon...

Ring Cycle DOS Front Cover

DOS (1996)

Ring Cycle is based on Richard Wagner's (1813-1883) "Der Ring des Nibelungen", a cycle of four operas incorporating German and...

PC-98 (1989) and Sharp X68000 (1990)

The sequel to The Shadow of Filias directly continues the story that began in that games. After the small country...

PC-98 (1988) and Sharp X68000 (1989)

In the southern part of the continent Godlanta lies a small country known as Filias Nogis. Following an era of...

Ring Runner: Flight of the Sages Windows Front Cover

Windows (2013)

Ring Runner: Flight of the Sages combines space combat action with RPG elements of skill progression and storytelling. The player...

Rings of Power Genesis Front Cover

Genesis (1991)

For a long time, our world was in darkness. The sun shone as always, but our souls were dark and...

Rings of Zilfin DOS Front Cover

DOS (1987), Atari ST (1987), Commodore 64 (1986) and Apple II (1986)

Rings of Zilfin is an unusual, but relatively unknown early fantasy solo RPG by Ali N. Atabek, who went on...

Risen Windows Front Cover

Windows (2009) and Xbox 360 (2009)

The earth trembled and ancient temples rose from the ground, followed by unknown creatures. Cyclones drive over the sea and...

Risen 2: Dark Waters Windows Front Cover

Windows (2012), Xbox 360 (2012) and PlayStation 3 (2012)

The town of Caldera is in deep trouble. The Fortress of Crystal, the last haven of the Inquisition and the...

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