The evolution of video games is fascinating, especially when you consider the astonishing power of popular modern titles. Gamers in New Zealand and beyond cannot get enough of the next-gen technology displayed by things like Gran Turismo 7 or Red Dead Redemption 2. Everything from graphics to frame rates and general playability has improved drastically since the early days. Show a teenager from the late 70s what’s available now, and they would probably faint with surprise!
While there are many different types of video games to choose from nowadays, players in New Zealand tend to prefer role-playing games. These huge open-map titles are perfect for adventuring, something Kiwis are especially in tune with as a result of their own beautiful landscapes. RPG titles have come a long way since the early days. A new breed of games has blown up in the last few decades, inspired by things like Nintendo’s Zelda series and the original GTA titles. Keep reading for some of the best modern RTG games available today.
What is a RPG Game?
Before we get into listing concrete examples, many people will need an explanation of what RPG games are. RPG stands for a role-playing game, which loosely means that gamers play as a character while navigating an open map and completing various missions or quests. Most enthusiasts would agree that the root of modern RPG games comes from Dungeons & Dragons, a similar game originating in the 1970s where each player takes on their own character.
Console-based RPG games are almost always single-player, although more modern titles have online multiplayer options. Part of their charm is the ability to get lost inside an imagined world for hours on end. It gets particularly exciting when the time comes to complete major missions or quests, as the sense of achievement is unparalleled. Popular examples from over the years include World of Warcraft, Grand Theft Auto, The Legend of Zelda, and Skyrim.
The History of RPG Games
As mentioned, most experts trace the history of RPG video games to Dungeons & Dragons, a fantasy-based table game where participants choose their own characters and roles. They combine forces to complete the main quest overseen by the Dungeon Master. Early RPGs sought to emulate this, with an electronic version called Dungeon coming out in 1975. It was a text-based game for the DEC PDP-10 minicomputer, so it wouldn’t have looked anything like the modern RPGs we have today.
The first RPG to come out for commercial consoles was Final Fantasy in 1987. Amazingly, the Final Fantasy series is still going strong today, which goes to show the popularity of RPGs in New Zealand and further afar. The first of Nintendo’s Pokemon games series was released in 1995, and these RPGs are still some of the most popular titles in the genre. The first Grand Theft Auto game hit shelves in 1997, another landmark moment in the history of RPGs. More recently, games like Skyrim and Red Dead Redemption 2 have taken the genre to whole new levels.
A Round-Up of Our Favorite RPGs
Countless RPGs have become incredibly popular over the last few decades. While it can be hard to pick the definitive best examples, we’ve listed a couple of our favorites below:
- Skyrim: Part five of the Elder Scrolls series, Skyrim is the next installment in the series after Oblivion. It carried on the open-world mechanic of its predecessor but featured a much larger and more diverse map. It is a game you could genuinely play for days at a time.
- Red Dead Redemption 2: The first Red Dead Redemption was good, but Red Dead Redemption 2 blew it clean out of the water. Rockstar Games designed an impossibly huge map and rendered the Wild West with pristine graphics. Untouchable!
Enjoyable Alternatives to RPG Games
Not everybody will enjoy RPG games, especially gamers who are less interested in the fantasy genre. Fortunately, there are plenty of alternatives nowadays.
Gamers in places like the UK often opt for sports-related games like FIFA. These are great for playing with friends and touch on the innate love of football in the country. Elsewhere, such as in New Zealand, players are increasingly turning to online casino games. Nowadays, there are sites that feature live dealer blackjack and poker titles, which can be much more realistic than playing the same games on RPGs. There are dedicated websites that help Kiwis learn about the most popular game options making it easier to get an overview of the best operators that offer these games to have the best experience possible. From these platforms, there are free online casino games in NZ that you can enjoy, either via demo mode or through the online casino bonuses that you can claim. Furthermore, these platforms ensure safety and supply various gaming guides to teach you the best way to play. Not all New Zealanders will enjoy online gambling titles, though. A similar alternative can be playing skill-based games like chess online with friends.