When we started gathering screenshots celebrating our favorite fantasy games, we ran into a bit of a snag: defining fantasy isn’t always easy. Any world that fits rules laid out by Tolkien (or, in the case of Shadow of Mordor, a world literally based on Tolkien’s work) is an easy choice. Swords, castles, mages, and dragons are distinctive, and they make for great art. As a result, Dark Souls 3 and The Witcher 3 feature heavily in this gallery, as do Skyrim, Morrowind, and Dragon Age.
Alternate history fantasy worlds like Dishonored don’t fit in with Tolkien’s world, but their mix of magic, steampunk, industrial revolution, and the occult is fantastic enough for our purposes. Assassin’s Creed was another frustration, nesting sword-wielding assassins with mystical abilities inside a sci-fi DNA-memory wrapper.
In the end, we had to stick to a more malleable definition: we know fantasy when we see it. Inside this gallery are over 70 of the best screenshots we could find that feature dragons, horses, cloaks and castles, demons, gods and quaint country towns. They’re all worthy of a campfire story (and your desktop).
Want 'em all? We've packaged the whole lot of hi-res images as a zip file.