7 – Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic
Initial Release Date: July 15, 2003
Why it’s one of the best RPGs: We haven’t gotten a Star Wars game since that’s lived up to Knights of the Old Republic. Instead of rehashing events from the games, or throwing the player into purposeless space combat with gratuitous cameos, KotOR told a story all its own. You get to be the Jedi and shape your fate either toward the Force or the Dark Side based on your choices using a morality system that other games would riff off of for years to come. Choose from three classes, distribute your stats as you see fit, and go to town with your lightsaber, your growing Force powers, or other abilities. Combat occurs in “rounds,” where the player and up to two companions face off against their enemies, performing actions simultaneously on a timer. It was a unique spin on turn-based combat, but it worked.
Rife with choices, minigames, upgrades, and an excellent storyline revolving around your character’s growth as a Jedi and fight against a new Sith Lord enemy. It all culminates in one of the best RPG plot twists out there, and one I won’t spoil here, because if you’re at all into Star Wars, then Knights of the Old Republic is a must.
Next: 6 - Xenogears