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Take away the swords and sorcery, are there any RPGs left?

emnmnmeemnmnme Registered User regular
edited February 2007 in Games and Technology
I like a good RPG now and then. Be it a dungeon crawler or a JRPG, a stat building game can kick a good bit of ass provided the atmosphere is believable and the story is fun. But when you add in orcs and wizards, I start to twitch in frustration. I have nothing against medieval times; pointy ears and Hobbits just creep me out something awful. So are there any good RPGs out there that don't fiddle around with fantasy settings?

For the record, I'm a fan of Fallout and Deus Ex (who isn't?) - I'm trying to figure out if there are great games out there that I don't know about already.

EDIT: So far the list includes:

Anachronox
Doom mod called Strife
Earthbound
Jade Empire
KotoR
Parasite Eve
Phantasy Star Collection
Pokemon
Rogue Galaxy
Septerra Core
Shadowhearts
Shenmue
Shin Megami Tensei
Skies of Arcadia
Super Mario RPGs
Titan Quest
System Shock 2
X-Men Legends
Vampire: Bloodlines

emnmnme on
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    SilpheedSilpheed Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    You might want to try out the Phantasy Star collection for the PS2 or if you want something more recent Rogue Galaxy might be a good purchase for you.

    Silpheed on
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    PataPata Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    The KOTOR games?

    Pata on
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    HyperAquaBlastHyperAquaBlast Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    Um X-Men legends 1&2 and Ultimate alliance are dungeon crawlers with out swords and magic.

    HyperAquaBlast on
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    emnmnmeemnmnme Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    I'm gonna look at some reviews for Rogue Galaxy.

    emnmnme on
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    Gaming-ModuleGaming-Module Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    Unfortunately, not really.

    I've always wanted an RPG set during World War 2 or a realistic period piece RPG. Something with more depth than "collect the crystals and defeat the evil empire and it's ruler."

    Gaming-Module on
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    JHunzJHunz Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    Well, you could play Jade Empire. It's certainly a different sort of fantasy setting than you seem to be complaining about.

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    DavoidDavoid Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    Earthbound.

    Davoid on
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    emnmnmeemnmnme Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    Unfortunately, not really.

    I've always wanted an RPG set during World War 2 or a realistic period piece RPG. Something with more depth than "collect the crystals and defeat the evil empire and it's ruler."

    If you like realistic environments, you might look at Vampire: Bloodlines. It's the only game I know of where vampires can carry shotguns.

    emnmnme on
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    -poe--poe- Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    Skies of Arcadia. Swords and magic, yes, but otherwise pretty much nothing from the Tolkien "inspired" feature list. More steampunk than fantasy. Also, Darklands on the PC is worth a look. Still European myth-centric, but its basis on Christianity-influenced German lore is a fairly big difference from what you're used to. Sea Dogs (PC) is a bit more sim-like, but from what I've heard, it's still very RPGish.

    -poe- on
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    LemmingLemming Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    Davoid wrote: »
    Earthbound.

    EarthboundEarthboundEarthboundEarthboundEarthboundEarthboundEarthboundEarthbound

    Lemming on
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    LavaKnightLavaKnight Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    Unfortunately, not really.

    I've always wanted an RPG set during World War 2 or a realistic period piece RPG. Something with more depth than "collect the crystals and defeat the evil empire and it's ruler."

    Shadow Hearts: Covenant fits the bill, but it's set during WWI. The historicalness of it was what really made it stand out to me. It turned out to be one of my favorite jrpg's.

    I haven't played them, but are the SMT games at all based in history? They always gave me that feeling.

    LavaKnight on
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    emnmnmeemnmnme Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    I bought Silent Storm on the cheap awhile back. While it's genre is turn-based tactical, all of your characters fiddle with stats and experience and invetory enough so that it's almost a realistic RPG based in a WW2 setting.

    It takes a really, really long time for the AI to make a move, though, and that kills the fun.

    Demo

    emnmnme on
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    StollsStolls Brave Corporate Logo Chicago, ILRegistered User regular
    edited February 2007
    emnmnme wrote: »
    I bought Silent Storm on the cheap awhile back. While it's genre is turn-based tactical, all of your characters fiddle with stats and experience and invetory enough so that it's almost a realistic RPG based in a WW2 setting.

    It takes a really, really long time for the AI to make a move, though, and that kills the fun.

    Demo

    Completely destructible environments for the eternal win. It is true you have to be really patient during the AI's turn, but I still had a blast just messing around with the physics, like knocking a hole in a wall around an ambush or blowing a staircase out from under a guy.

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    Robo BeatRobo Beat Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    -poe- wrote: »
    Skies of Arcadia. Swords and magic, yes, but otherwise pretty much nothing from the Tolkien "inspired" feature list. More steampunk than fantasy. Also, Darklands on the PC is worth a look. Still European myth-centric, but its basis on Christianity-influenced German lore is a fairly big difference from what you're used to. Sea Dogs (PC) is a bit more sim-like, but from what I've heard, it's still very RPGish.

    And it's also ridiculous amounts of fun. Available on Dreamcast and Gamecube, but if you have a choice, try to hunt down the Gamecube version. It's got some bonus materials and side quests, some of the extras that were previously download-only on the Dreamcast, plus it's probably a lot easier to find.

    Robo Beat on
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    BlackjackBlackjack Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    Non generic fantasy RPGs that I can think of:

    Pretty much anything in the Shin Megami Tensei series (Persona, Persona 2: Eternal Punishment, Shin Megami Tensei: Nocturne, Digital Devil Saga 1 and 2, Devil Summoner).

    Shadow Hearts 1, Covenant (2), and From the New World (3)

    Rogue Galaxy

    Xenosaga 1, 2, and 3

    Xenogears

    Final Fantasy VI is a fantasy (sort of Medieval Steampunk) setting without the fantasy races, and a new translation of it just came out for Gameboy Advance.

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    NaromNarom Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    I second the Shin Megami Tensei series as a suggestion. It's definitely worth looking into if you aren't already familiar with it.

    Narom on
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    emnmnmeemnmnme Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    That's two for Rogue Galaxy. Reviews are giving it high scores - anything else I should know about that one?

    Has anyone played the PC game Wasteland? That's going back twenty years but I've heard it was a good RPG for its time.

    emnmnme on
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    smokmnkysmokmnky Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    Knights of the Old Republic if you like Star Wars...or just great games.

    smokmnky on
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    Neo RasaNeo Rasa Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    There is the one third party published Doom engine game, Strife. It's a great action RPG that is sort of like Deus Ex but in a post apocalyptic setting more similar to Fallout. Huge degree of freedom and inevitably fun action since it's running on the same engine responsible for Doom/Heretic/Hexen.

    It can be a pain to acquire and get running properly on a modern machine. Regardless, Strife is a very rewarding experience for the PC.

    Neo Rasa on
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    TM2 RampageTM2 Rampage Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    ... Pokemon?


    And there's that Mega Man X RPG... but... it probably sucks or something I dunno.

    TM2 Rampage on
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    Bloods EndBloods End Blade of Tyshalle Punch dimensionRegistered User regular
    edited February 2007
    Does KOTOR really count? I mean swords=lightsabers, force=sorcery.

    It's the same idea only in a galaxy far, far away.

    Bloods End on
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    Steel AngelSteel Angel Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    It was mentioned in another thread, so it's fresh on my mind although you will never be able to find it, but Panzer Dragoon Saga definitely deviated from the high fantasy RPG. For one thing, the dragons were man-made biological weapons that breathed lasers while you rode along and shot things.

    Easily one of my favorite games of all time and the lack of a proper RPG sequel (Panzer Dragoon Orta was a sequel in terms of story, just not game play) makes me cry.

    Steel Angel on
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    Neo RasaNeo Rasa Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    It does sadden me that Panzer Dragoon Saga didn't get a follow-up in gameplay.

    Sega's brought us the original House of the Dead again, Virtua Cop, shame this one never got re-released in some way. As much as I love Orta, if they had Panzer Dragoon Saga on there as an extra it would elevate it to one of the raddest XBox games ever (it already had the original Panzer Dragoon after all).

    Oh hey a Strife review.
    http://www.gamespot.com/pc/action/strife/review.html

    Neo Rasa on
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    LuftwafflesLuftwaffles Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    If you like Deus Ex, try out System Shock 2. Similar mechanics and an unbelievable atmosphere. Graphics are outdated though.

    Luftwaffles on
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    BaronVonSnakPakBaronVonSnakPak Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    yakuza for ps2.

    funny thing is, i thought it was a beat em up when i bought it, then i played it and realised it was actually a full-fledged rpg with real time combat and persistance use of "fuck". i really, really dig it, though the loading times and the lock-on is complete shit.

    edit: luftwaffles, SS2 has a couple mods to bump up the visual quality:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/System_Shock_2#Patches_and_Fan_Modifications

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    VoodooVVoodooV Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    Bloods End wrote: »
    Does KOTOR really count? I mean swords=lightsabers, force=sorcery.

    It's the same idea only in a galaxy far, far away.

    you're not wrong at all, but maybe its just the setting. Maybe its just because KOTOR kicks so much ass.

    But KOTOR does indeed count.

    VoodooV on
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    RainbowDespairRainbowDespair Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    If you can get past the pastel graphics & the awful music, Paladin's Quest (Lennus in Japanese) for the SNES rocked.

    pq-battle.gifpqchez.gif

    Part fantasy, part sci-fi, and entirely alien. Gameplay was really cool with an indepth (for a SNES game) magic system where you had 8 fields of magic and your proficiency would slowly increase the more you used spells from each field. Tons of mercenaries to hire for your team, some of which had interesting (okay, nasty) quirks. Oh and all magic cost HP to use (you healed by using refillable health bottles). Sadly, the sequel was never released in English.

    Some other suggestions:

    Breath of Fire V: Dragon Quarter for the PS2 (cyberpunkish fantasy where the entire game takes place in an underground world)

    Parasite Eve 1&2 for the PS1 (Modern day, sci-fi/horror RPGs)

    Robotrek for the SNES (I hated it, but I'm mentioning it since it's fairly obscure)

    7th Saga for the SNES (Fantasy, but one of the most unorthodox fantasy worlds ever)

    Shadowrun for the SNES/Genesis (2 different games, both awesome cyberpunk RPGs)

    Titan Quest (Fantasy, but it's based on classic old world mythology as opposed to your generic D&D/Tolkienesque Fantasy)

    If you're looking beyond English games, there are a number of additional games that could be mentioned, my favorite being The Adventures of Horai High School (think Earthbound with an awesome job system).

    Oh and it's been mentioned before, but it bears repeating: ANYTHING MEGATEN RELATED. Just going with games with official English versions that includes Persona, Persona 2, Shin Megami Tensei: Nocturne, Digital Devil Saga 1&2, Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Summoner: Raidou Kuzunoha vs the Soulless Army, DemiKids, and a couple others that have slipped my mind.

    RainbowDespair on
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    EchoEcho ski-bap ba-dapModerator mod
    edited February 2007
    If you like Deus Ex, try out System Shock 2. Similar mechanics and an unbelievable atmosphere. Graphics are outdated though.


    YOUR SONG IS NOT OURS

    Echo on
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    DirtchamberDirtchamber Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    Second page and nobody's mentioned Anachronox? For shame.

    Dirtchamber on
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    Marty81Marty81 Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    If you like Deus Ex, try out System Shock 2. Similar mechanics and an unbelievable atmosphere. Graphics are outdated though.

    I was just about to mention that. Also, I just started playing it, and I have no problems with the graphics.

    Marty81 on
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    robaalrobaal Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    Second page and nobody's mentioned Anachronox? For shame.

    It's still the first if you have it set to 50posts per page :P

    For clarification - Anachronox is a sci-fi, comedy, console-like RPG for the PC :D


    There was a game called "Hammer and Sickle" that's an WWII RPG based on the Silent Storm engine. Sounds good on paper but what little I've read suggests that it's not very good.


    edit: the SS2 engine starts to show its inadequacy near the end in the
    organic levels

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    lazerbeardlazerbeard Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    Kotor, and soon MAAASSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS EFFFFEEEECCCCCCTTTTTTT

    lazerbeard on
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    lazerbeardlazerbeard Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    oooh also, if youre into Fire Emblem style RPG/RTS type gameplay, and robot anime, be sure to check out Super Robot Taisen on the DS, or if you know japanese and have a Japanese PS2, get super robot wars alpha 3, I wont go too into depth on these games because there is a huge thread out there somewhere, but suffice to say that these games are a lot of fun.

    lazerbeard on
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    TaramoorTaramoor Storyteller Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    Mario RPGs
    Lost Kingdoms
    .hack//sign
    Megaman Battle Network games
    Timestalkers
    Azure Dreams
    The later Final Fantasy titles are totally steampunk, starting in 6 and only increasing in techno-babble as the series progresses.
    Secret of Evermore

    Taramoor on
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    saikocatsaikocat London, UKRegistered User regular
    edited February 2007
    +1 for Vampire: Bloodlines

    Added bonus of tentacle porn jokes, and you can pick which type of vampire you want to be, so if you don't want to focus on magic, pick one of the less magic-oriented types. I have much love for Malkavians, but I think they're best suited to a second playthrough, it reveals a bit more of the story that way, on a first playthrough it might all seem like random crazy gibberish. If you haven't played it yet, and install it, get the patch first, it's crazy broken without patches. This year, watch out for Bioshock and Mass Effect.

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    IncendiusIncendius Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    Arcanum, if it hasn't been mentioned. Pretty much the best example of a steampunk videogame I can think of; think Industrial Revolution era Britain with a healthy dash of elves, dwarves, monsters and magic.

    Incendius on
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    DoronronDoronron Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    Budget titles - you get what you pay for:
    Space Hack. Harbinger. Restricted Area.

    As mentioned above, X-Men Legends and Ultimate Alliance. The PC versions are actually a hell of a lot of fun once you get used to the keyboard as your means of movement and attack.

    I've been hunting for some decent hack and slash RPGs to help tide me over until the release of Hellgate, but I've played through all of the ones I could find (at least for the PC).

    Doronron on
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    Target PracticeTarget Practice Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    This is nitpicky of me, but OP, Strife isn't a "Doom mod". It's a game in the Doom engine. Calling it a "Doom mod" is like calling Jedi Outcast a "Quake 3 mod".

    Target Practice on
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    FallingmanFallingman Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    How did we get this far with no mention of Fallout 1&2?

    Ok, granted that they look a little dated these days... but c'mon they WERE awesome...

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    TheySlashThemTheySlashThem Registered User regular
    edited February 2007
    I'll second Skies of Arcadia and any Mario-based RPGs.

    TheySlashThem on
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