Where have all the RPGs gone?

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I’m not always all about food.  Sometimes I’m about video games.  And sometimes I’m about video games with a good STORYLINE.

See when I was growing up I wasn’t allowed to have video game systems like the original Nintendo.  My father truly believed that video games would rot my mind.  Even so, I didn’t have the strong desire to play them or have them in the house.  When I went to visit friends we would play Mario, but I was okay with not having my own system.  Instead, I would read books.  Tons and tons of books.

If you grew up in the 90’s you may recognize some of my favorite book series:  Goosebumps, The Babysitters Club, and when I got older- Fear Street.  As a kid I loved scary stories.  I also loved drama, with hints of childish romance.  (Does anyone else remember when those girls in the Babysitters Club discovered boys?  I was obsessed!)  My parents would take me to Media Play and instead of going for the games and movies I ran straight for the books.  I could spend hours looking for my next read.

As I got older I didn’t read as much.  I ended up spending a lot of my free time on the old dial up internet.  It was on the internet that my mom met her best friend, and it was her best friend that introduced me to emulators and ROMs.  If you don’t know what those things are, they are a way you can play console video games, without using an actual system, on your computer.  Completely not legal.  However, it was how I discovered the RPG.

RPG, or role playing game, has you in control of the main character as you go through a storyline.  That’s right, it’s like an INTERACTIVE book!  Plot lines are  developed as you go through the game and discover new things about the world you are in.  Sometimes you are battling evil and saving the world.  Other times you are working towards something a lot less epic, but other wise still entertaining, like saving a farm:

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I spent hours upon hours playing games like Harvest Moon, Chrono Trigger, and Secret of Mana.  I couldn’t get enough.  Once I found out these games all had sequels coming out on Playstation, I saved up my money and bought the system with my brother.  I devoured Final Fantasy 8, 7, and 9, Chrono Cross, and Harvest Moon: Back to Nature as soon as I had the money to purchase them.  The storylines drew me in.  I rushed through every game just so I could find out what was going to happen next.

My love affair with the RPG only got worse with the release of the Playstation 2.  The graphics were improved 100%.  The story lines were enthralling, the characters entertaining and relatable.  There was action!  Aventure!  Romance… and danger!  There was everything I loved about storytelling.  And the best part?  All of it was interactive.  I wasn’t just reading a story.  I was in control of what happened!

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This was just a small selection of the many RPGs I played on PS2 over the years.

To me, that period was the best in all of video game history.  Eventually the PS3 was released, but I found I wasn’t as excited about it as when the PS2 came out.  As you could imagine, the graphics were WAY better than the PS2.  The storylines should have been more immersive, more relatable, and just even better than the last generation!  However, I came to discover that most of my favorite game series were not going to continue on the PS3.  After the system was out for a while I decided to purchase one and whatever RPG I could find to play on it.

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This is my RPG collection for the PS3.  Just one game.  Over the years there was a change in the types of games that were being released.  People wanted realistic games.  Games of war, violence, and… zombies?  Almost every game now has guns involved somehow.  Gone are the days of turn based RPGs.  The market moved towards first person shooters, fighting, and action type games.

Things just haven’t been the same for me.  My love affair was ended before I was ready for it.  I still hope that things will turn around.  Every year I wait for E3 to find out what new games are coming out.  And every year I’m disappointed once again.  Announced for the PS4 are more Battlefield, Call of Duty, and Assassin’s Creed games.  Not one single RPG announced.

I guess I’ll just stick to playing my old games.  Maybe next year will be different?  Who knows.  I guess I won’t get my hopes up 😦

Do you have something that you loved but can’t find anymore?  Tell me about it in the comments!

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8 responses to “Where have all the RPGs gone?

  1. I will play those old games with you any day! (Well, any day I’m not working and don’t have a baby demanding my attention… XD)

  2. well im in the same boat you are in i have been looking for rpgs since back in the day I also was a reader heavy when i was young goosebumps and forgotten realms and such anyways I have played every rpg available for every system i held a second job at gamestop which pretty much let me try every game i could ever want if you own only a ps3 and your still live on this page ill check back tomorrow and if you are i will give you some great games for ps3!!!!

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