Let’s Talk About…: RPGs

We’re back with our “Let’s Talk About…” series! Check out the previous chats here.

Let’s Talk About…: any RPG

I have a better idea. Let’s talk about every RPG. They’re great, aren’t they?

Actually, this is a nice time to start hinting at something I’m putting together for next year. It’s so huge that it’s going to take two people to do it, so BadgersAndBowties will (finally) be rejoining me here as we undertake a massive RPG project while balancing work and other obligations.

rpg cover presposia

One of my favorite things about RPGs is the RP part. I mean, the G part is pretty important, too, and sometimes people like to throw a J on the front and they certainly have a place, as well, but forever and always the RP is going to be my love.

Cary from Recollections of Play once mentioned that sometimes in order to find perspective in our own lives, it takes stepping out of it and living as someone else for a while, and RPGs do just that. The more we experience, the more insight and empathy we may develop, and thus the more perspective we may bring to the table for new or complex situations.


So… the more RP, the more XP… IRL.

What a reason to play, right?

And don’t forget: keep an eye out here for more RPG goodness in 2018!

Do you play RPGs? Are they of the J variety? Do you have a preference regarding the RP or the G part? What is your all-time favorite RPG? What do you love about it? Let me know in the comments!

Thanks for stopping by, and I’ll see you soon!
~ Athena

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  1. I think it largely depends on my mood. I spent most of my time gaming in my teenage years with JRPGs after they made a comeback during the middle of the PS1’s life cycle. Sure, I played FFIII, Lufia, Chrono Trigger, and Super Mario RPG on SNES, but I was in middle school. I was an adult on the PS1 when things like love, jealousy, friendship, and betrayal made more sense. Nowadays, though, JRPGs tend to be way too overly verbose for me to fully enjoy. Persona, Final Fantasy, and NieR aside, I typically just find things I like *about* them but rarely enjoy the full experience.

    When I’m diving into a meaty RPG, like Mass Effect, Dragon Age, or The Witcher, that offer dialogue options with long-lasting consequences, I always answer with the reply that suits my character during that particular playthrough. In Dragon Age: Origins I made a blood mage that wanted to pursue Morrigan, so he was a complete shit to everyone in the group purely to amuse her. On another playthrough I was more “lawful,” etc.

    I don’t go out of my way to RP in-character in MMOs or write RP for my in-game characters, but I always try to get into the mind of my own characters within these games (if that makes sense — I’m tired and rambling lol).

    My favorites are Final Fantasy Tactics (well, most of the FF games besides 2), Mass Effect 2, Dragon Age: Origins + Awakening + Inquisition, Morrowind + Oblivion + Skyrim, Xenogears, and more recently NieR Automata and Undertale.


  2. I find video games of the RPG variety are the best way to get me away from me, so to say. RPGs give me a world I can save, structure, virtual friends and family, goals to achieve, and an all-around better fictional life to lose myself in.

    Now if you’ll excuse me, Ellen Hawke IV needs to go to Massive-Head-Trauma-Bay with her friends to find and explore Generic Cave Layout #1 for billionth time. I couldn’t be happier!:D I’m pretty sure the Dragon Age series will match the FFXIII trilogy for my all-time favourite RPG by the time I’m done Inquisition, haha. I’m also pretty sure Mass Effect will be a contender when I get to it.

    I’m super-excited for your 2018 project!!


  3. Ahhhhh there are so many questions to answer, but I can say that I love RPGs best out of any type of game, especially ones with a deep story and intuitive gameplay. If it counts, my favourite RPG has to be Faxanadu on the NES. I’ve looked much of my life for games similar in gameplay to that one (it’s truly an action game with RPG elements) and have come up relatively empty-handed save a few games (Battle of Olympus, Zelda II: The Adventure of Link, etc). I do have a super soft spot for FFIX too! I probably have close to a billion RPGs by now that I have yet to play, but it’s a horrendously glorious backlog that I’m pretty excited to eventually tackle.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I have only played two JRPGs, and both of them were from the Final Fantasy series (FFV and FFXIII). There are a few games I have played that, while not made in Japan were influenced by the style, like Aveyond.

    One of my favourite RPGs (besides the one with the dragons 😛), is Knights of Pen and Papel and it’s sequel. They are fun and funny, and a good enough way to get a bit of the tabletop experience if you don’t have a regular role-playing group. And by “a bit of the experience” I mean smartass comments and random discussions about the morality of your actions. If you want the careful planning and intense worldbuilding aspects, you have to play Pillars of Eternity (a game I have yet to finish because holy crap, is it long!).

    I enjoy both the RP and the G parts, but I guess that I prefer one aspect over the other depending on the game I am playing.


  5. Ooo, how exciting! I love a good RPG, with a J or not. Donning a character, exploring vast worlds, doing a little puzzle-solving or crime-fighting or dragon-slaying…it’s all just good. Well, mostly. RPGs are not without issues, depending on the game or series, and that probably why players criticize them as much as care for them. When you expend time on a new character and learn a whole new set of mechanics only to have the entire experience fall flat, it can really hurt. But when all the pieces fall into place, the experience can be magical and fulfilling. I honestly don’t know what my favorite RPG is at this point. Perhaps by following your series, I’ll figure it out. 🙂


  6. Definately love RPGs. If I were to pick a favourite or the most effective, I’d have to go with Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind. Why? Well, simply because this is the one game where I effectively did role play. The game was so big and fascinating and had a complete hands of main story that let you forego doing it all together, and somehow still sink in 70 hours into everything else the game had to offer. This I felt most like I was my own character and did literally whatever I wanted. Not to knock down other RPGs as being worse, I still love games like Mass Effect and many others, but don’t necessarily feel like I role play to the extent like I did in Morrowind. But I find the RP part of RPG genre to be the worst name genre ever. I find any game can be a RP game, and not sure how early RPGs got such genre labels. Anywho, that doesn’t stop me from calling all these games RPGs.


  7. I play RPGs of all kinds. Have a couple JRPGs going, dabble in a lot of WRPGs, making my way through a classic CRPGs, and I’ve even been joining a group in a TTRPG… that I play on my C.

    But yeah. I love RPGs. Good games. They offer a great method of progressing gameplay, lots of opportunities for characterization and plot, a continually developing experience, lots of things that are good to have in a game.

    That said, like most everything else, they can be both good and bad. And when they’re good, they’re good, but when they’re bad, they’re baaaaaad. Been playing through my PS2/Gamecube collection, and that was an era when JRPGs in particular really stagnated. There were still plenty of good examples of the form there, but in general, the genre didn’t really move anywhere or improve much during that era. But there sure were a lot of games following the same basic model coming out. And I apparently bought all of them. Kind of getting burned out on pushing my way through them now.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That first paragraph was one of the best things I’ve read today haha

      I do agree that when they’re good, they’re very good, and when they’re bad, they’re just about the worst possible game imaginable. You’re right that there can be a very formulaic feel to RPGs, either J or not. I didn’t play many on the PS2, but maybe that’s why… Good luck on your quest!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. RPGs? What are those and what does the J stand for??

    I can’t keep that up. RPGs, specifically the ones with a J are my favorite types of games, and my favorite game and story of all time is of course a JRPG. Video games are quintessentially an interactive media and the RP part adds another layer to the interaction. You’re not only playing a game, you’re playing a role, following someone else’s life, if the RPG in question is one where the characters have a personality of their own. I think you have an article about that: the three types of games in terms of how the player interacts with the, well, played.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. They’re the most amazing games, and… oh you were joking. haha

      I think I know what you’re talking about, the improvise, plan, etc. etc.? Or the different types of avatars? Either way, I agree that the RP part does add a very nice layer of depth to the interactivity part of games!

      Liked by 1 person

  9. LOOOOOOVE RPGs, whether they have the J or not. They’re my favourite type of game. They have so much to teach about life in general and are just so helpful for getting out of my own head, I guess you could say it’s the RP bit that’s most important to me too.

    Just as a cool fact, as I am both an English nerd and a Tolkien nerd, what you’re talking about with finding perspective in our own lives by stepping out of them, is very similar to Tolkien’s theory of Fairie story. He talks about looking at another world through different eyes as a way of recovering from the everyday life and gaining a new way of looking at things. I highly recommend reading “On Fairy-Stories” if you’re interested!!! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Right? I love them for the same reason I love books – great stories, and a great way to “be” somewhere else for a while when needed 🙂

      Very neat! I know a bit about that, but you’ve made me very interested, now. Thanks for the recommendation!

      Liked by 1 person

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