The RPG genre is almost as old as PCs themselves, with the first games created for giant mainframe computers all the way back in the 1970s. Since then, there’s been plenty of classics of the genre – Baldur’s Gate, the Elder Scrolls franchise, Neverwinter Nights and more. But what about some new ones? If you’re looking for recently released RPGs for your PC, to give your games library a well-earned update, here’s some recommendations for you. Some you might have heard of, some might be new to you – but it’s definitely worth picking up these five RPG titles:
1. DISCO ELYSIUM
2019’s Disco Elysium features a unique setting originally conceived by a roundtable of artists and musicians, based in Estonia, and this artistic heritage is clear in the final product. It’s a beautiful game, with an incredibly unique art style, accompanied by some of the best writing of any game, ever!
You play as an amnesiac cop, attempting to solve a murder case as you explore this world and move through its incredible cast of characters, each one asking questions about life, ideals, power, and what the right path forward might be. It’s certainly not the lightest game of all time, but there’s plenty of comic relief in there, too!
Unsurprisingly, Disco Elysium racked up the awards as one of the best new PC RPGs in years, including seven BAFTA nominations (including wins for best debut game, best narrative, and best music), four wins at the 2019 Game Awards and more. A must-buy!
2. YES, YOUR GRACE
Released in March 2020, Yes, Your Grace was developed in a remote village in Poland, an atmosphere which heavily influenced the final product. In it, you play as a medieval king, managing your limited resources over weekly rounds of gameplay. Petitioners, courtiers and even your family will present themselves, and you must choose how to best manage your limited supplies to survive a hostile world.
With a beautiful pixel art style, it’s one of the better-looking new RPGs, and a real treat to look at, even as you’re facing some tough decisions! Mixing humor and drama on both a kingdom-wide and intensely personal scale, the story doesn’t shy away from some of the darker sides of medieval life – but it’s well worth experiencing! Yes, Your Grace might have gone under your radar on its initial PC release, but it’s definitely worth a visit, if you initially gave it a glancing pass.
3. THE OUTER WORLDS
Obsidian Entertainment has quite the heritage when it comes to RPGs – they’re the studio behind, among others, Fallout: New Vegas, KOTOR II and Pillars of Eternity. Unsurprising, then, that 2019’s The Outer Worlds’ megacorporation-dominated frontier is a pleasure to immerse yourself in!
Set in a 1920s-inspired series of space colonies, it’s a lush and beautiful game populated with incredible characters. Even the smallest NPCs are fleshed out and fun to spend time with, buy items from (or, occasionally, shoot in the face!) The combat’s incredibly satisfying as well, playing out mostly as a first-person shooter, but with plenty of room for stealth and alternate approaches. There’s a lot to discover out here on the frontiers as you navigate this corporate-dominated world, and plenty of companions to meet and recruit – but it’s a lighter-hearted take on the future than some other options.
Among many other awards, The Outer Worlds picked up the 2020 Nebula for best writing – a serious seal of approval! Get it on PC now and enjoy this colourful romp around Halcyon!
4. DRAGON QUEST XI
The Dragon Quest franchise is much more famous in its home country of Japan, and releases don’t always break into the western market. But 11 was a smash hit, helping lead the launch of the Nintendo Switch, with a PC port soon following!
Switching up the gameplay style of these recommendations once more, Dragon Quest XI is a dyed-in-the-wool JRPG, featuring turn-based party combat against stylised monsters in a lush fantasy world. The English localisation was widely praised on release, and boasts some of the most charming, charismatic characters of any recent RPG. Plus, of course, a gorgeous visual style, slick tactical combat, and – with the definitive edition – a fully orchestral soundtrack.
If your PC is already full of classic JRPGs, this new title will blow them all away! If you’ve never played one before, it’s the perfect entry point to a whole new subgenre that’s definitely worth your time. Pick it up today and get adventuring!
Most RPGs rely on teams of dedicated writers to craft their elaborate worlds – not so Wildermyth! In this 2021 offering for the PC, the usual branching storylines are replaced with procedural narrative generation, where webs of intertwining random events will change your heroes’ stories, equipment, destines, even their bodies…
More ordinary things happen, too – your characters age and grow relationships, forming rivalries, friendships, or romances. Each one boasts a custom generated background, too. Wildermyth pulls these all off fantastically, and you find yourself truly drawn into your people and their stories. Which makes it all the more difficult when one of them might have to be permanently maimed, or even sacrifice their lives to save the others…
The combat is great, too! Although the paper-craft art style might look cutesy, the isometric turn-based setup offers plenty of chances for crafty strategy or unexpected challenges. Adjustable difficulty settings range from simple, story-focused encounters to brutal life-or-death strategy as you explore the world. Oh, and that’s all procedurally generated, too.
Wildermyth is a real testament to what new PC RPGs can do and be. For fans of the genre, it’s nigh-on unmissable!
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