Mass Effect 2: You might find it a little bit odd that two 3rd person shooters, that have nothing to do with the fantasy genre, have made their way to the top of this list. The truth is RPGs and games as a whole are evolving. In Mass Effect, you have everything you could ask for in a video game. The production level is as good as a top tier film and the branching storylines and other RPG elements of Mass Effect, on top of its much improved shooter game engine, make this quite possibly the most satisfying experience on the PS3. Additionally, you can make your own decisions about what happened in the first Mass Effect in a nice abbreviated interactive comic.
Fallout New Vegas: There is some debate as to whether this game is as good as its predecessor, Fallout 3. There are too many improvements in this latest offering, story included, to not consider New Vegas superior. This game is another 3rd person shooter to make the top RPG list but, it’s too deep and immersive to not include. The graphics and game engine are nowhere as polished as Mass Effect 2. However, you really feel as if you can do almost anything in this game. There isn’t a game with as much to see and do. This time you don’t have to wait twice as long for DLC as you did with Fallout 3.
Demon Souls: This is the first fantasy game on this list and what a game it is. Not since the old days, of no save games or even passwords has a game made you pay so dearly for being careless. Seeing this game a couple of years before release made this a highly anticipated game. It is gorgeous, atmospheric and deeply immersive. The controls are amongst the most intuitive ever and the suspense is palpable. You just have to take this game step by step, inch by inch but make no mistake, it is a must play.
Final Fantasy XIII: Can there be an RPG list without Final Fantasy? The main complaint with this game is that there is little interactivity and it has been called a movie with combat. However, it is extremely well produced with an epic story, great acting and stunning visuals. This is the only Japanese RPG on this list because it is the gold standard for this type of game. While some of its competitors have moved the bar with gameplay, there isn’t another Japanese RPG with the polish. To finish that thought, the Playstation 3 version is without a doubt the graphically superior version. If this endorsement isn’t enough, there are sequels and spinoffs coming for this game as well.
Dragon Age 2: Just out in time to make this list, this is a classic western style RPG. If you loved PC RPGs ten or fifteen years ago, and want to relive that experience, this is the game for you. Not to say this game is a rehash. On the contrary, Dragon Age 2 brings the style into the 21st century. Its high production value and streamlined gameplay, make it a perfect game for modern times. Some may complain, that it’s a little too limited but, its contextual customization makes it just enough old school without requiring you to invest 4 hours with each sit down. Although, you probably won’t want to put it down.
Honorable mentions are Elder Scrolls: Oblivion, Eternal Sonata, Fallout 3, Dragon Age: Origins, 3d Dot Heroes, and Borderlands.