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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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Space Miner: Space Ore Bust iPhone Front Cover

iPhone (2010) and iPad (2010)

In Space Miner you play Joe (or Jade) Gritstone, a fresh college graduate who starts working at his/her uncle's asteroid...

Space Pirates and Zombies Linux Front Cover

Linux (2013), Windows (2011) and Macintosh (2012)

Space Pirates And Zombies is a top-down open-world science-fiction space action / combat RPG somewhat reminiscent of classic games like...

Space Rangers Windows Front Cover

Windows (2002)

Space Rangers sets you up as a member of the Space Rangers, a small group of individuals who are there...

Space Rangers 2 Complete Windows Front Cover

Windows (2008)

This is a collection of Space Rangers 2: Dominators and Space Rangers 2: Reboot released on Impulse.

Space Rangers 2: Dominators Windows Front Cover

Windows (2004)

Space Rangers 2: Dominators is a blend of space exploration and trading, role-playing and real-time strategy, played from many different...

Space Rangers 2: Dominators. Reboot Windows Front Cover

Windows (2007)

Space Rangers 2: Dominators. Reboot includes: Space Rangers Space Rangers 2: Dominators Space Rangers 2: Reboot Exclusive game developing materials....

Space Rangers 2: Reboot Windows Front Cover

Windows (2008)

This is an expansion to the Space Rangers 2: Dominators game.It adds: Five new text quests. 27 new planetary battle...

Space Siege Windows Front Cover

Windows (2008)

As humanity explores space, they encounter an evil and very powerful race called the Kerak. The humans have no chance...

Spacewrecked: 14 Billion Light Years From Earth DOS Front Cover

DOS (1991), Amiga (1990) and Atari ST (1990)

In this sci-fi RPG you are sent to a fleet of spaceships which have been invaded by aliens who escaped...

Spandex Force Windows Front Cover

Linux (2008), Windows (2008) and Macintosh (2008)

Create your own hero and clean up the crime-infested town of Vigilance Valley in this puzzle RPG. Save citizens in...

PlayStation 2 (2005)

The world of Neverland was once in balance, ruled by three deities. But soon kingdoms appeared that wanted to control...

Nintendo DS (2010)

Spectral Force Genesis is a combination of war simulator, real time strategy and role playing game. The game gives you...

Spectral Souls: Resurrection of the Ethereal Empire PSP Front Cover

PlayStation 2 (2005), PSP (2006), iPhone (2012), Android (2011) and iPad (2012)

The wars continues in the magical world of Neverland. After the demons gained the upper hand once again in their...

Spectrobes: Beyond the Portals Nintendo DS Front Cover

Nintendo DS (2008)

Rallen and Jeena may have managed to stop the Krawl invasion of the Nanairo Star System and forced them to...

SpellForce 2: Dragon Storm Windows Front Cover

Windows (2007)

The magic portals, which allow the people of Eo to travel between the shattered islands, are about to fail. As...

SpellForce 2: Faith in Destiny Windows Front Cover

Windows (2012)

Faith in Destiny is the successor to SpellForce 2: Shadow Wars. The campaign takes place four years after the sinking...

SpellForce 2: Shadow Wars Windows Front Cover

Windows (2006)

SpellForce 2: Shadow Wars is the sequel to SpellForce: The Order of Dawn. In Order of the Dawn, the player...

SpellForce 2: Shadow Wars (Collector's Edition) Windows Front Cover

Windows (2006)

The Collector's Edition includes: SpellForce 2: Shadow Wars Exclusive in-game weapons and items SpellForce²: Sounds of Shadows (official SpellForce² soundtrack)...

SpellForce: Shadow of the Phoenix Windows Front Cover

Windows (2004)

One of the Circle mages has risen from the dead with the help of a strange mask. He is now...

SpellForce: The Breath of Winter Windows Front Cover

Windows (2004)

The great ice dragon Aryn, the Frostweaver who once almost froze the world is awakened by a Fial Darg (prince...

SpellForce: The Order of Dawn Windows Front Cover

Windows (2003)

EO, the world in which the game takes place was torn apart by a ritual called the Convocation. The ritual...

Spelljammer: Pirates of Realmspace DOS Front Cover

DOS (1992)

Based on the 2nd Edition of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons (AD&D) Spelljammer rulebook, Spelljammer: Pirates of Realmspace leads the player...

Spells of Gold Windows Front Cover

Windows (2002)

An interesting combination of an RPG with a trading game, this game puts you in a setting where the class...

The Spiderwick Chronicles Nintendo DS Front Cover

Nintendo DS (2008)

Play as Jared, Simon, and Mallory Grace as they explore the fantastical world around them with the help of a...

Spiral Knights Macintosh Front Cover

Linux (2011), Windows (2011) and Macintosh (2011)

Spiral Knights is a free-to-play massively multiplayer action role-playing game, with a focus on instanced adventures. When the Spiral Knights...

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