The 50 Best RPGs Of All Time

CD Projekt Red
CD Projekt Red /
48 of 50
best rpgs
Credit: BioWare /

3 – Mass Effect 2

Developer: BioWare

Initial Release Date: January 26, 2010

Why it’s one of the best RPGs: I could go back and beat the dead horse of why “choices mattering” in Mass Effect should have been more important than it was, but I’d rather praise Mass Effect 2’s excellent execution of that very thing. Mass Effect 2 is a game where everything you do leads up to one moment: your final mission. Every friend you recruit, every relationship you forge, and every mistake you make results in a different outcome for the final push into the Collector Base. The story serves as a perfect bridge between the hints of galactic destruction dropped in the first title and the full-on onslaught that becomes a reality in Mass Effect 2. The characters, new and returning, are each unique and lovable and memorable. You don’t want anyone to die at the end, even the ones who rub you the wrong way.

This excellent use of player agency combined with refined combat (thank God they fixed Biotics) wherein each character has a unique skillset made each mission an interesting experience beyond “hide behind these boxes, shoot, hide again” that was so prevalent in the first game. Then there was all the dialogue and voice acting constantly cropping up as you battled your way through each area, granting further insight into the lives and thoughts of your comrades. While I don’t always recommend playing the third game to everyone, Mass Effect 2 is a don’t-miss title. Plus, you’ve got to hear Mordin sing “Scientist Salarian” at least once.

Next: 2 - Final Fantasy VI