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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

SNES (1996)

Sequel to the original Super Nazo Puyo, Rulue no Tetsuwan Hanjōki is a Puyo Puyo spin-off which combines arcade puzzle...

Super Ninja Boy SNES Front Cover

SNES (1991)

One day a spaceship came down from the heavens and into the skies of Chinaland. It began broadcasting an image...

Super Panda Adventures Windows Front Cover

Windows (2013)

Super Panda Adventures is a game where you play as Fu - a panda warrior who has to rescue the...

Super Paper Mario Wii Front Cover

Wii (2007)

In this action-platformer, Bowser and Peach find themselves at the wedding altar, forced into marriage by the evil Count Bleck....

Apple II (1983)

A maze top-down dungeon crawl computer game for the Apple ][. In "Super Quest", your objective is to penetrate the...

Game Boy (1991)

The very first installment of the Super Robot Taisen series is quite different from all of its successors; most notably,...

Super Robot Taisen 64 Nintendo 64 Front Cover

Nintendo 64 (1999)

The basic concept remains unchanged in this N64 installment of the series - it's a turned based strategy game where...

PlayStation 2 (2007)

Super Robot Wars Original Generations Gaiden, or SRWOGG for short, is a direct sequel to the PS2 title Super Robot...

Super Robot Taisen OG Saga: Endless Frontier Nintendo DS Front Cover

Nintendo DS (2008)

Super Robot Taisen OG Saga: Endless Frontier is a story-driven turn-based role-playing game and spin-off in the Super Robot Taisen...

Game Boy Advance (2005)

Super Robot Taisen: Original Generation 2 is a strategy RPG in which players lead a small force of mechs in...

PlayStation (1999)

Disc 1 contains Super Robot Wars Complete Box which contains complete remakes of three classic Famicom (NES) / Super Famicom...

Super Robot Wars F SEGA Saturn Front Cover

PlayStation (1998), SEGA Saturn (1997), PSP (2011), PlayStation 3 (2011) and PS Vita (2012)

The game takes place 4 months after the events of Super Robot Wars 3. A special, but shady, secret police...

Super Robot Wars F Final SEGA Saturn Front Cover

PlayStation (1999), SEGA Saturn (1998), PSP (2011), PlayStation 3 (2011) and PS Vita (2012)

Super Robot Wars F Final (or "Super Robot Taisen F Kanketsuhen") picks up where Super Robot Wars F left, starting...

DOS (1994)

Super Samtong is an action role-playing game starring the titular character, an ex-Mirinae mascot who became the property of Sailon...

SuperSecret Browser Front Cover

Browser (2009)

SuperSecret is a family-friendly internet world for older kids and teenagers with a strong focus on casual gaming and exploration....

Surging Aura Genesis Front Cover

Genesis (1995)

Young prince Muu is the son of the king of the country Pasfelda. One day, during a major ceremony, the...

Survival Kids Game Boy Color Front Cover

Game Boy Color (1999)

When on a pleasure cruise for his tenth birthday, a young boy is swept castaway to a remote island by...

TurboGrafx-16 (1989)

The game is based on the eponymous manga (sometimes transliterated as Susa no Oh) by Go Nagai. The protagonist is...

PC-98 (1992) and FM Towns (1992)

Suzaku is the youngest in the tribe of warriors of the country of Oomi, which has a long tradition of...

Swashbucklers: Blue vs. Grey Windows Front Cover

Windows (2007) and PlayStation 2 (2007)

Swashbucklers: Blue vs. Grey is an action role-playing game, offering a chance to take to the high seas as the...

Sweet Home NES Front Cover

NES (1989)

Sweet Home follows the exploits of five members of an investigation group: Kazuo, Akiko, Taro, Asuka, and Emi. The famous...

PC-98 (1992)

It is said that the country of Suzaku is protected by the spirit of the legendary White Dragon, a mythical...

PC-98 (1994)

Goddess of the Evil Blade is a direct sequel to the first Sword Dancer. The story continues to chronicle the...

TurboGrafx CD (1993)

One night, a lone, grim-looking traveler who calls himself Ax appears in a pub at the outskirts of Satania castle....

PlayStation 2 (2005)

Originally released as OZ (Over Zenith) in Japan, The Sword of Etheria is a single-player, 3rd person, role playing game...

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