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Best RPG From Every Year In The 2010s

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Best CRPGs With Turn-Based Combat

Highlights

  • RPGs have always been at the forefront of gaming, known for their exceptional writing and immersive worlds.
  • From
    Mass Effect
    to
    The Witcher 3
    , each year in the 2010s saw the launch of highly acclaimed RPGs worth playing.
  • Whether it’s tactical combat in CRPGs or open-world exploration in action RPGs, the genre continues to thrive.

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RPGs have always sat on top of the gaming industry as one of its most popular genres. Whether that’s decades ago or in more recent times, RPGs have never lost steam. When asked for a genre with the best writing, most people will likely name an RPG as well. It can’t be understated how famous the genre is.

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The Best CRPGs With Turn-Based Combat

Players can expect a lot of elemental synergy and tactical combat, and a wealth of options when it comes to combat in these turn-based CRPG titles.

The 2010s spawned some of the most popular and legendary video games ever. Some are more aligned with action, known as action RPGs, while others stick to a more direct adherence to the genre, especially with CRPGs. Every year in the 2010s, a highly-acclaimed RPG launched that are, by the critics’ and fans’ appraisal, each worth playing.

10 2010 – Mass Effect 2

Metascore: 96

Mass Effect 2 Cover Art

Mass Effect 2

Released
January 26, 2010

Genre(s)
Action RPG , Third-Person Shooter

BioWare was one of the most well-known video game companies in the 2000s, creating rich RPGs seemingly independent of setting, such as Baldur’s Gate, Dragon Age, and Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic.

However, the Mass Effect series was their most popular, regarded as some of, if not the best, sci-fi games. Mass Effect 2 is considered the crowning jewel of the series, retaining many aspects of RPGs that made the first game a household name. Players can start as different classes with various abilities and proficiencies that can impact the RPG nature of the game. Most importantly, being an RPG, players can accept numerous quests, travel the galaxy, and indulge in the deep lore Mass Effect contains.

Metascore: 96

skyrim-dragon-soul-bug

Skyrim

Released
November 11, 2011

Skyrim always feels like a game that came out recently due to how incredibly popular it has been throughout the years, combined with an intensely active modding community, and the fact that Bethesda keeps releasing new versions of the game. Remembering that it came out in 2011 will undoubtedly make some people feel old.

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Bethesda’s most famous game by far, the land of Skyrim has proven to be one of the most immersive worlds players can traverse. With numerous classes, skills, quests, locations, and, of course, weapons, Skyrim might not be as deep of an RPG as games like Baldur’s Gate 3 are, but it still possesses a vast expanse of elements that put it within the best of the genre.

8 2012 – Mass Effect 3

Metascore: 93

Mass Effect 3 Shepard in front of planet being invaded

The end of the original Mass Effect trilogy arrived in 2012, wrapping up one of the most legendary sci-fi game franchises. Mostly received as a good conclusion for the series, one of the major criticisms was the ending didn’t live up to how fans thought it would.

Overall, Mass Effect 3 follows the same trend as the previous two games, with players creating their characters and choosing different classes to play as, all of which contain unique proficiencies and powers. Once again, players can navigate the galaxy to complete quests and engage in dialogue, features expected of the RPG genre. The game also introduced a multiplayer survival mode where players had to endure waves of enemies as a co-op squad.

7 2013 – Path Of Exile

Metascore: 86

Path of Exile battle occuring

Path of Exile

Released
October 23, 2013

Genre(s)
Action RPG

Diablo 3 wasn’t what some fans had imagined when it launched in 2012 after waiting over a decade for the next installment in the series. In came Path of Exile, a spiritual successor to Diablo 2, and one that was very clearly inspired by Blizzard’s series.

Reaching widespread acclaim, Path of Exile takes place in a dark fantasy world, a genre in gaming that was starting to gather steam at this point. Players can explore the world via any of the classes available, all of which require various weapons and loot, a system that Path of Exile indulges lavishly in. Uniquely, aside from main areas, locations are also procedurally generated. Most importantly for gamers, Path of Exile has stated it ‘will never be pay-to-win.’

6 2014 – Dark Souls 2

Metascore: 91

Dark Souls II Bear of the Curse shot with arrows collapsing

Dark Souls 2

Released
March 11, 2014

Genre(s)
Action RPG

The original Dark Souls is often considered as one of the best RPGs ever made, but also came out in 2011, having to contend with Skyrim. Dark Souls 2, despite being often criticized as the most frustrating of From Software’s Soulsborne games, didn’t have as much tough competition when it launched in 2014.

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Regardless of some of the growing pains of the series, Dark Souls 2 allowed players to create and customize a character, with a selection of starting classes to pick from. Players can invest in multiple stats to wield a vast array of weaponry and armor, with the game being surprisingly expansive (unless anyone has played Elden Ring beforehand).

5 2015 – The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

Metascore: 92

The Witcher 3 Wild Hunt Geralt on horse looking over grassland

Regarded as one of the greatest video games ever created, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt continued the story of Geralt of Rivia. Praised almost universally, the third Witcher game featured numerous RPG elements within its setting, a world that is ranked as having one of the most realistic environments.

Playing as Geralt, players can change the story via dialogue, with the ability to speak to characters being a prominent feature, such as when trading. The combat is also in-depth, with many ways to fight enemies. As usual, the game includes various quests for players to fulfill, with different rewards for completion.

4 2016 – Dark Souls 3

Metascore: 89

Dark Souls III Soul of Cinder main cover image

Dark Souls 3

Released
March 24, 2016

Genre(s)
Action RPG

With the conclusion of the Dark Souls series, FromSoft delivered a highly-praised send off. Even after the release of Elden Ring, many fans still believe Dark Souls 3 to be the best game FromSoft ever made.

This time, Dark Souls 3 was a noticeable shift in the series, creating more involved and, as a result, difficult bosses. Many of the elements from the previous games were still present, such as customizable characters with starting classes, the ability to level up stats, and a plethora of armor and weaponry. Players also consider Dark Souls 3’s two DLC to be arguably the best FromSoft has made, and some of the best in gaming.

3 2017 – Divinity: Original Sin 2

Metascore: 93

Divinity Original Sin 2 characters posing

Divinity: Original Sin 2

Released
September 14, 2017

Divinity: Original Sin 2 was the game that allowed Larian Studios to make Baldur’s Gate 3, after it impressed Wizards of the Coast It’s not hard to see why, despite Larian making critically acclaimed games for a while at that point.

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Divinity: Original Sin 2 is a prime example of a CRPG, with in-depth isometric tactical turn-based combat. Players can pick between various classes which possess unique skills and abilities that can cause numerous status effects. There is an abundance of weaponry and armor, all of which can be used in countless quests. NPCs will have different interactions, either through actions or dialogue. The game even has multiplayer to allow for some good old chaos between friends.

2 2018 – Monster Hunter World

Metascore: 90

Monster Hunter World characters posing

Monster Hunter World

Released
January 26, 2018

Genre(s)
Action RPG

Among the plethora of games Capcom has made, Monster Hunter World stands as one of their most well-known, and one of the more recent entries in the Monster Hunter series.

Putting an emphasis on character customization, Monster Hunter World has an eponymous gameplay loop; players must go into the open-world and hunt monsters. These monsters then allow players to craft stronger weapons. Weapon selection is vast and diverse, which will be used in completion of quests. The gameplay loop is simple but fulfilling, although the game’s learning curve is steep to start, both reasons why this is considered one of Capcom’s best.

1 2019 – Disco Elysium

Metascore: 91

Disco Elysium main characters center screen with city behind them

Disco Elysium

Released
October 15, 2019

Developer(s)
ZA/UM

Disco Elysium occupies a unique spot as an RPG without any combat. It is a very distinctive game that is extremely highly regarded, so much so that people consider it interactive art.

While Disco Elysium is an RPG, it is also a detective game, where players control their character and progress the game via dialogue and skill checks instead of combat. Objects and NPCs can be interacted with in that traditional RPG manner, but players also possess different abilities, each with their own benefits that can allow the completion of the game in wildly different ways.

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