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The RPG Files: What We’re Grateful for in the World of RPGs

By Christopher Coke on November 27, 2015 | Columns | Comments

What We’re Grateful for in the World of RPGs

Ah, the Friday after Thanksgiving. It’s a time of afterglow; a day to nibble away at leftovers, bask in the lack of 9 to 5 grind, and dive into a favorite game. We spend so many hours discussing games and looking toward what’s next to come that it’s easy to lose sight of how much there is to love and appreciate in the here and now. In honor of the holiday, and all of the people around the world who make our hobby possible, we’re devoting this special edition of the RPG Files to those very things. Join us and let us know what you’re grateful for in the comments below!

We’re thankful...

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That RPG Worlds are Bigger and Better Than Ever

If you’ve been reading the site for long, you know that I’m a sucker for a good virtual world (and even more so if it’s an MMORPG). RPGs are big and sprawling, and while the is true for most games these days, RPGs feel richer and more alive than ever before. I spent dozens of hours just wandering in Skyrim and find myself doing the same in The Witcher 3.  It’s a generation made for the curious wanderer and I couldn’t be happier.

When Side Quests Surpass the Main Quest

One of the most pleasant surprises a gamer can encounter is when they stumble upon a “side” quest that makes the main quest pale by comparison. These are the hidden gems of the RPG world that make a game stand out long after you’ve finished playing. This is no truer than this year’s The Witcher 3. There are more stories floating around about quiet side quests than anything in the main campaign, and that’s saying something with a game as entirely well put together as that.

That Romances are Suddenly Extremely Important

Romances have become an expectation in modern AAA RPGs, and you know what, that’s pretty great. Romances add a whole new dimension to how you roleplay your character. Or at the very least, they’re a fun side mission if you just want to get to the giggity.

That Storytelling has Reached a Whole New Level

In the time I’ve been a gamer (has it been over 20 years?!), I’ve seen games go from crudely drawn sprites to full, motion captured masterpieces the somehow avoid the uncanny valley. Take a moment to reflect. The power of technology has allowed game creators to explore territory that simply wouldn’t have been possible two decades ago. Developers now have actors that can actually act out their scenes. Artists can present their concepts and actually realize their vision. It’s pretty awe inspiring to see how far we’ve come.

That RPG Systems are Invading Other Genres

I play RPGs because I love their mechanics, so seeing so many RPG systems come into other genres just makes me appreciate those games more. I like leveling, so why wouldn’t I enjoy it in a shooter? I like unlocking abilities and finding new gear, so hoo-rah for games like Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate and Shadow of Mordor. Are they overused? Perhaps, but it’s heartening to see so many other gamers tapping into what we’ve been enjoying all these years.

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