The role-playing game is the cornerstone of PC gaming. Long before shooters or real-time strategy, the earliest PC developers replicated their tabletop RPGs on the PC, building sprawling adventures filled with orcs and wizards and foul dungeons. Those early games slowly built on their tabletop origins, and RPGs eventually became so popular, their elements spread to other genres. Here are our 25 favorites: the RPGs we’d tell anyone to play right now.
Baldur's Gate 2
A whole slew of new screenshots have just landed in time to remind you that Baldur’s Gate 2: Enhanced Edition is landing this Friday. All of the original art has been remastered into high-res, but the Dungeons & Dragons–based rule system and gameplay remains intact. The new edition also has four new allies and their various quest lines to explore, along with an arena challenge that focuses solely on tactical combat.
Baldur's Gate 2: Enhanced Edition, an updated version of the classic BioWare RPG, is set to release November 15, according to the game's official website. Just like the reworked edition of the first Baldur's Gate, the sequel is set to include new characters, another Black Pits arena combat mode, and lots of work under the surface of the venerable game's interface and coding.
Beamdog president Trent Oster has given a status update on the sequel to Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition, saying that their upgrade of the classic Baldur's Gate 2: Shadows of Amn has already received multiple novels worth of added words. "We're hard at work on BG2:EE and it is going well," Oster told ShackNews. "Phil (our design lead) mentioned to me there is over 350,000 words of new content."
The Enhanced Edition of Baldur's Gate is due in a little over two weeks, but the expandening of BioWare's classic RPG series won't stop there. In an interview with the Red Bull website of all things, creative director Trent Oster confirmed that “we are committed to doing Baldur's Gate 2: Enhanced Edition."
There's not long to go until the Baldur's Gate Enhanced Edition lands, but it's not the only project trying to give those RPGs a spit-polish. The Baldur's Gate 2 Redux team is working on porting the sequel to the Dragon Age engine. One module came out in 2010, covering the opening torture dungeon, with the second, Athkatla, currently in the works, and the rest hopefully coming sometime this century.
The most recent release though is cool for fans even if it's not playable - a Dragon Age engine recreation of that act, after the player escapes the dungeon to find David Warner voiced baddie Irenicus, pictured above looking very bored with the programming on his crystal ball one Sunday afternoon, taking on the whole city in magical combat. First spotted on David Gaider's Twitter feed, you'll find it here.
Imagine playing a bit of Baldur's gate with a friend sat a hundred miles away on their couch playing along on an iPad. That combination of futuristic cross-platform sorcery and D&D-fuelled nostalgia will become a reality this September when Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition arrives. "Bgee will have co-op multiplayer and will work across platforms" tweets creative director Trent Oster. "iPad can play with Android, Mac and PC. On happy gaming family:-)" D'awww.
According to the Baldur's Gate Enhanced Edition site, there will be matchmaking for multiplayer sessions, which will presumably lump characters together based on their level. It's available to pre-purchase now for $19.99. Buying early will let you pre-load the files and jump in as soon as the Enhanced Edition is released on September 18. But how does it look? Check out the screenshots below to find out.
The mysterious countdown on the mysterious Baldur's Gate site expired last week to reveal Baldur's Gate Enhanced Edition, a prettied up version of the classic RPG with "a variety of modern improvements." A post on the site says that Baldur's Gate 2 will be getting the same treatment, but Beamdog and Overhaul have aspirations beyond simply re-polishing the much loved series up for modern audiences. They want to make a sequel. Overhaul's Cameron Tofer told Gamespy that "Baldur's Gate 3 has been our long term goal."
RPG classic Baldur's Gate 2 is now available through Good Old Games. it comes bundled in with the Throne of Baal expansion pack and a collection of other goodies, including the soundtrack, manual, maps and artwork from the game, all for $9.99. Not bad for one of the greatest RPGs of all time. The game can be purchased now from GOG. Baldur's Gate 2 is just the latest in a slew of great old Bioware games to make it onto Good Old Games. The original Baldur's Gate, Neverwinter Nights, the Icewind Dale series and Planescape Torment are also on the service. That's hundreds and hundreds of hours of old school RPG action preserved in one place.