From gun-wielding wizards to young heroes just starting out, this list has the best fantasy CRPGs of all time.
CRPGs, or computer role-playing games, are one of the most popular types of PC games. The first fantasy CRPG, Dungeons & Dragons, came out in the 1980s, so the genre has a long history.
Since then, the fantasy CRPG subgenre has given birth to a lot of great games. Their story-driven core and cast of well-written characters have helped them tell epic stories that have become fond memories and the backbone of games that are called “must-plays.” So, whether you want to wield a sword and meet a hero’s prophecy or just find your way through a world with only magic and your best friends by your side, this list is for you.
Pillars Of Eternity
Obsidian’s success with crowd fundingIn Pillars of Eternity, you play as a Watcher, someone who can see their past lives and talk to the minds of the dead. In the fantasy world of Eora, you have to find a way to stop a disease that makes babies born without souls.
Like the games that came before it, Pillars of Eternity lets you approach quests in different ways, based on how you like to play. Pillars of Eternity is one of the best revivals of the genre in recent years. It has a good story and a group of well-written characters who stick with you.
Divinity: Original Sin 2
Divinity: Original Sin 2 is the fifth game in the Divinity series. It is a loose follow-up to the first Divinity: Original Sin game and is made by Larian Studios. Eggy Car takes you back to the world of Rivellon, where attacks from monsters from other dimensions called Voidwoken are happening more and more often, making people more paranoid and afraid of magic.
You play as a Sorcerer, a person who has control over a powerful but dangerous magic called the Source and is offered the chance to become a god and save Rivellon from the Voidwoken threat. You can also choose one of the six pre-made characters or make your own. The other six characters can then become your possible allies.
Even though CRPGs always give you the option to be good or bad, Obsidian’s morally gray Tyranny does it the best. You play as a Fatebinder, a high-ranking agent in the world of Terratus who works for the cruel ruler Kyros, who has just finished conquering Terratus.
As a Fatebinder, it’s your job to stop the roots of rebellion from spreading across the realm. Along the way, you’ll make friends and foes. But there are ways to break free from Kyros’ chains, or you can stay his loyal soldier until the terrible end.
Arcanum: Of Steamworks And Magick Obscura
Arcanum: Of Steamworks and Magick Obscura is a game by the now-defunct company Troika Games. It takes place in a fantasy world that is going through an industrial revolution, which pits magic and technology against each other. The story is about you, the only person to survive a zeppelin crash. You decide to find out who attacked your ship and why. Eventually, you find out about an old evil that wants to take over the world.
Arcanum’s system is set up so that you can use magic or technology like guns. It takes into account how the technology around you will react to your use of the dark arts, which gives character builds a unique flavor.
Dragon Age: Origins
Dragon Age: Origins is the first game in the Dragon Age series. It takes place in the made-up country of Ferelden during a time of civil war. You play as an unlucky person who is brought into the Grey Wardens, an old group that fights against the Darkspawn, monsters from another world who want to destroy Ferelden.
Origins is a CRPG that is seen as a direct successor to Baldur’s Gate and Neverwinter Nights. It has a story full of dark decisions and choices that don’t always help everyone, and your choices have a big impact on the world.
The Elder Scrolls 3: Morrowind
The Elder Scrolls 3: Morrowind is a game that has become a cult favorite. It puts you in the role of a newly freed prisoner who has just arrived on the island of Vvardenfell in the province of Morrowind. You are quickly made a spy for the Emperor and given the job of finding out what’s going on with people who go missing all over Vvardenfell.
But the story takes a different turn when you find out that you may be the Nerevarine, the reincarnation of a legendary hero, and that you must now achieve the prophecy to get rid of a great evil for good.
Neverwinter Nights 2
Neverwinter Nights 2 takes place in the Forgotten Realms, with the title city of Neverwinter as its center, and follows the usual path of a hero. You start out as a young person in the town of West Harbor. You’ve lived there your whole life after your parents died in an attack by a mysterious person called the King of Shadows and you were raised there by your grandparents.
When another attack happens, your peaceful life is destroyed, and you are sent to the city of Neverwinter with a strange relic to find out the truth about yourself and how to stop the King of Shadows from destroying the city and everyone in it.
Baldur’s Gate, the game that came before the much-anticipated Baldur’s Gate 3, also takes place in the Forgotten Realms. Its focus is on the city of Baldur’s Gate. You play the role of a young child who is the ward of a powerful mage named Gorion.
When Gorion is killed and you have to run away in the middle of the night, you have no choice but to go on a hero’s journey to solve the iron problem in the city and find out why your mentor was killed and why you are next on the list of people to be killed.