16. Persona 5 Royal
Available on: PS4, PS5
School is hard. It’s even harder when you have a super-powered alter ego who spends their nights roaming through a supernatural realm fighting the bloodthirsty, personified desires of the people around them. Persona 5 Royal is an expanded version of Persona 5, one of the best RPG games of 2017. The expansion gives quality of life and gameplay adjustments, plus two new characters, adding even more value to the 100-hour game. Persona 5 wants you to understand each character, and Royal gives you the chance to learn about mysterious student Kasumi Yoshizawa and school counselor Takuto Maruki - you'll be entrenched in the world of Shujin Academy before you know it. And if you don't have a PS4, don't fret, as there's likely a Switch port on the horizon...
15. Stardew Valley
Available on: PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, PC, Nintendo Switch
Pelican Town welcomes everyone. After inheriting your grandfather’s farm, it might be that you want to cultivate the land into a lush paradise with fruits and vegetables springing from the ground, or perhaps you’d rather focus on the social side of the game and romance a villager of your choosing. More and more of the game unfolds the further you’ll get, as aside from selling your produce and/or levelling up friendships you can also tackle the dungeon-crawling mines. Or spend your days fishing. Or just buy hats. Seasons dictate what you can and can’t do, so you’ll soon find yourself falling into a pleasantly-repetitive routine. That’s a good thing, trust me.
14. Dragon Quest 11: Echoes of an Elusive Age
Available On: PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, Nintendo Switch, PC
If you look up JRPG in the dictionary, you'll find that it's not actually in there because most people would assume it's the acronym for a phone provider or something. But if you were to add JRPG to the dictionary, Dragon Quest 11 would probably be the best example to point to. It's simply sublime. The series' combat and charm haven't aged a day, and all of Dragon Quest 11's supporting characters have charisma that most protagonists would kill for. It's gorgeous, perfectly paced, and packs music that'll make your soul pound.
13. Demon's Souls Remake
Available on: PS5
In what may be one of the best launch titles ever, the Demon's Souls remake is an absolutely beautiful reimagination of a game that drastically shifted the entire industry. You may have played Demon's Souls, but this remake's new architecture and visual design, done in picture-perfect next-gen quality, will add mystery back to well-known areas. The bosses look more impossible than ever, looming over you in scary detail, forcing you to question if you've chosen the right upgrades for your character or your weapons - and if you haven't, boy will Demon's Souls let you know. It's as if the game relishes in your mistakes, forcing you to marinate in them so you never make it again. This game will genuinely stun and dazzle you, even when it's kicking your ass.
12. Dragon Age: Inquisition
Available on: PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, PC
Sorry to drop some major life lessons on you, but the people you surround yourself with says a hell of a lot about you as a person. The same principle applies to Dragon Age: Inquisition. Adventuring around its massive dangerous areas alone would lead to you becoming a bloody red smudge pretty quickly, so tailoring your group of followers will depend entirely on how you prefer to play. Bloodthirsty melee players will benefit from keeping those mages at a distance to buff you in combat, or if you prefer to stay safely away from the action you’ll need to befriend The Iron Bull, who’s buff in a very different way. Although it might be a bit overwhelming for newcomers, getting to know each of the characters is enough motivation to return to Inquisition’s world time and time again.
11. World of Warcraft
Available on: PC
There's a reason World of Warcraft persists over 15 years after its initial release, thanks in large part to a constant flow of content keeping the game fresh and alive. Like the recent Shadowlands expansion, which takes players to the afterlife and introduces four new zones and tasks you with choosing a Covenant to pledge allegiance to. You can farm, play a Plants Vs. Zombies style mini-game, partake in pet battles, complete puzzles, finish quests, explore new areas and so much more in World of Warcraft.
10. Disco Elysium
Available on: PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, Nintendo Switch, PC
In Disco Elysium, you're a detective who has a drinking problem and drug-induced amnesia, and you can die in the opening minutes while trying to get your tie from the ceiling fan. There's no traditional combat, but there are dialogue trees and skill checks, and you'll need to upgrade skills to pass skill checks - however, it's a slippery slope. Upgrade your Drama too high and you might be partial to the occasional fit of hysterics. All of Disco Elysium is based on dice rolls which are added to your skill value and stat value - the resulting roll and addition of all the stats will tell you if you've succeeded in completing a task, which can be as asinine as getting your tie from a ceiling fan.
Available on: PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, PC
Welcome to Yarnum, a gloomy, sombre city straight out of a gothic novel whose inhabitants are suffering through a plague - not just of the illness type, but also the dangerous beasts type. Yarnum, despite being the last place you'd want to visit IRL, will entice you, begging you to return back to it longer after you've bested its worst. You'll want to knock on more doors and hear the bizarre cackles of villagers who have gone mad, or walk along another rooftop in an attempt to find a hidden mystery. Streamlined RPG elements have you working with six stats, and the character creator lets you design some of the coolest Victorian Gothic heroes ever. The hats, man, the hats are so cool.
8. Assassin’s Creed Odyssey
Available on PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, PC
Assassin’s Creed Odyssey is a leap forward for Ubisoft’s stabby series as for the first time you have NPCs to romance (whether you want to be a Casanova or as chaste as a saint), and dialogue options. Then combine those brand new features with the return of naval combat and enough sidequests, locations, and hidden secrets to keep you busy for days and you've got Odyssey. Your misthios (mercenary) Alexios or Kassandra is truly yours to shape however you wish. With nine endings to unlock, the way you end specific quests will end up having an impact on the world around you whether that’s for the better or worse. You know what that means? Multiple playthroughs. If you dare, of course, as you will be kept busy for over 100 hours if you choose to explore everywhere and do everything (and everyone). After this RPG, Assassin’s Creed is never going to be the same again.
7. Elder Scrolls 4: Oblivion
Available on: PlayStation Now, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, (backwards compatible), PC
Those gates to Elder Scrolls 4: Oblivion aren’t going to close themselves, you know. Good job that you’re there to help, right? But despite the fact that Daedra are now flooding into Cyrodiil, there are plenty of other things for you to be getting on with besides slaying them. Choosing between joining the Mages’ Guild, or perhaps you want to spend your time helping the ordinary everyday citizens who have more personal things to worry about than the Oblivion Crisis. Unlike Skyrim, there’s a class selection screen at the beginning of the game which is ideal for anyone who just wants to pick a build and jump in, but you can also tweak every attribute of your character to create that perfect Hero. Cyrodiil calls for aid!
6. Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic
Available on: Xbox One, Xbox Series X, PC
Sometimes, RPGs can feel a bit unapproachable. If you're not a lover of the game type, you might feel daunted by a title that requires meticulousness or an endless supply of patience or a seemingly endless supply of choice. Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic is a game that appeals to hardcore RPG players and those who may have been hesitant to join the ranks. Set 4,000 years before the movies' events, you are tasked with training in the ways of the Force under the tutelage of the Jedi. The game lets you pick from three character classes at the start of the game, and choose if your character will align with the dark side or the light side of the Force. The game is a Star Wars fan's Eden as it manages to capture that magical, space fantastical essence of the films while imbuing the entire experience with choice. There's incredible voice-acting, accessible gameplay, and sparkling supporting characters. Plus, you get to swing a karking lightsaber.
Turn to page 3 to check out the rest of our picks for the best RPG games around...