The Top 100 RPGs Of All Time

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The Top 100 RPGs Of All Time

In the early days of gaming, identifying role-playing games was easy. The focus on story, exploration, and character progression was distinct from the platformers and action titles that dominated the industry. These qualities earned RPGs a reputation as the longest, most immersive, and most complex experiences available.
Over the years, the borders defining RPGs eroded. The genre’s core concepts incubated and evolved, while other types of games borrowed and applied the mechanics that made RPGs successful. That includes levelling up, upgrading abilities, equipping gear, forming relationships, fighting through dungeons, and more. Today, you can hardly find any release – from strategy games to side-scrollers – without a trace of the RPG genetic code.

This list is a celebration of the genre’s incredible impact; these are the best 100 games that exist at the intersection of narrative, combat, exploration, and progression. Each title strikes a unique balance among those elements, occasionally even pushing the boundaries of what we would traditionally call an RPG. Some of the entries have historical influence, some embody an entire era, and some are just really fun – but all of them have played major roles in shaping the identity of this entertaining and ever-expanding genre.

This feature originally appeared in issue 290 of Game Informer magazine.

The Sports Desk – AO Tennis Serves Up The Australian Open

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The Sports Desk – AO Tennis Serves Up The Australian Open

It's January, which means that The Australian Open has the distinction of starting off a new year of tennis with a Grand Slam bang. The tournament starts on January 10, and Melbourne, Australia developer Big Ant Studios (click for more on them) has the official video game license for the tournament. AO Tennis on PS4 and Xbox One is out on January 16th in Australia and New Zealand, and later in March in America and Europe.

Game Informer Australia editor David Milner recently got his hands on the game, and had some positive things to say about Big Ant's first tennis title.

GAMEPLAY 

The Geek's Guide To Movies In 2018

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The Geek's Guide To Movies In 2018

As 2018 starts revving its engines, it's time to look forward to all the great entertainment we'll be receiving in the year to come. Of course, we'll have plenty to talk about in terms of upcoming games, but what about when you're not gaming? Thankfully, even if you want to just sit back, relax, and enjoy a movie that's relevant to your interests, Hollywood more than has you covered. We already saw the onslaught of nerdy films in 2017, and 2018 is shaping up to be chock full of comic book and nerd-culture movies as well. This list doesn't even include TV series, such as Jessica Jones season 2 or the return of The Walking Dead. Instead, this list is focusing solely on movies.

Check out the nerdy movies of 2018 below and join us in figuring out which ones are worth braving the crowds at your local theater.

Maze Runner: The Death Cure - January 26After four years, the popular Maze Runner series finally reaches its conclusion with Maze Runner: The Death Cure. The story follows Thomas and his group as they try to break into the Last City and best the most dangerous labyrinth yet.

Best Digital Card Games To Kick Off The New Year

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Best Digital Card Games To Kick Off The New Year

The digital card game space has a ton of options, and whether you like orcs or Pokémon, there's something out there for you. With so many choices, it can be tough to find a good fit. Here are my picks for digital trading card games you should check out as we head into 2018.

Hearthstone

The Kobolds and Catacombs expansion delivers, breathing lots of new life to Blizzard's classic. If you're not a daily player who's interested in climbing the ladder or participating in PVP, the single-player Dungeon Run content is amazing, free, and accessible to everyone - even if you don't have a collection to speak of. Even if you're not chasing dragons, summoning up legendary weapons, or becoming a Death Knight, Hearthstone continues to crush it on content offerings. If you are into the PVP, a wealth of new cards offer new play strategies and takes on old archetypes. So what are you waiting for? There are decks out there that aren't Jade Druid waiting to play you, I swear! While the Dungeon Run is well suited to the theme of Kobolds and Catacombs, it's something I hope to see lots more of in the future - maybe even 2018!

The Games Andrew Reiner Finished In 2017

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The Games Andrew Reiner Finished In 2017

I have a family. I have friends. I try to balance work and play. That said, seeing the credits roll in over 50 games in a year's time is a somewhat ridiculous feat. Many late nights were spent completing what I believed was the final mission or act in a game, only to realize I was nowhere close. I kept playing. I valued game time over sleep. That's a sacrifice I make every time. A foolish sacrifice all for the love of the game.

The number of games I finished line up with my efforts in the last couple of years, yet I feel like I didn't do a good enough job of seeing everything I needed to this year. I only logged 30 hours into Persona 5, saw only one ending in Nier: Automata, and didn't touch Yakuza 0. I usually don't miss the "big" or "noteworthy" games in a year, but I feel I didn't see three of them in 2017. I gave Nier and Persona 5 legitimate shots, but maybe didn't see them to the points where I would truly understand what makes them special. I enjoyed both immensely, but not enough to say I truly get them.

How Ubisoft Is Turning AC: Origins Into An Interactive Museum

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How Ubisoft Is Turning AC: Origins Into An Interactive Museum

Assassin’s Creed Origins features one of the most impressive historical settings we’ve ever seen in a game. Its rendition of Ptolemaic Egypt is expansive and filled with incredible places to explore. Of course, it’s also filled with dangers. Linger too long near the banks of the Nile and you’re likely to end up in a hippo’s belly. Temple guards may not eat you, but they can take a similarly aggressive approach to loiterers. Fortunately for all of you would-be explorers out there, an upcoming new mode will let you fully explore the world that Ubisoft Montreal built – and learn a lot about ancient Egypt – at your own leisure without having to worry about getting chomped on.

The Discovery Tour is a free addition to Origins that adds a new game option from the start menu. Players who select it can take part in a variety of historical tours, based on a variety of different aspects of life during the game’s historical setting. You can learn about the construction of the Great Pyramids, get the low-down on the Library of Alexandria, and get a better sense of what day-to-day life was like for an average citizen in the region via fully narrated presentations. We talked to Jean Guesdon, Assassin’s Creed Origins’ creative director, and historian Evelyne Ferron to learn more about this exciting new mode.

The History Of Pokémon

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The History Of Pokémon

Gazing up at the orange Carrot building in Setagaya, Tokyo, you would have no idea it was the home of Game Freak, the developer behind one of the world's most popular video game franchises. The Pokémon logo isn’t displayed anywhere in the lobby, and Pokémon Go’s nearby PokéStops don’t offer any hint of the studio’s existence. Across the street at a 7-Eleven, a banner waves over the door to promote the most recent Pokémon movie, but that’s currently at every one of the convenience stores throughout Japan.

Once you make your way to Game Freak’s floor, a red sign with the company’s logo makes an appearance in the hall, but you won’t see your first Pokémon until you make it past a locked door. The waiting area is a dark room with a single chair, ominous floor lighting, a backlit Game Freak logo, and a brightly lit, slowly rotating globe.

This feature originally appeared in print issue 293.

10 Unexpected, Weird Games We Want On Switch

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10 Unexpected, Weird Games We Want On Switch

The Switch has had a busy year, with both exciting new releases and unexpected ports. Nintendo's portable powerhouse continues to draw the interest of third-party and indie developers. We already wrote up the heavy-hitters we want to come to Switch, so we sat down and thought about the lesser-known stuff on the console, y'know, the weirdos. Here are 10 unexpected games we'd love to see on The Switch.

Heat SignatureFrom the maker of Gunpoint, Heat Signature is an ambitious, fun sci-fi indie that's all about tactics and reaction timing. In Heat Signature, your mission is to board ships. Sometimes you're killing everyone on said ship, sometimes you're just sneaking around to steal tech. Either way Heat Signature is a great combination of action and strategy. Given the dearth of strategy games on The Switch, it'd be great to have this indie gem on there.

You can read Kyle Hilliard's review of the game here.

The Games Brian Shea Finished In 2017

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The Games Brian Shea Finished In 2017

Each year I relish the opportunity to play through as many games as possible before the calendar turns. I don't look at this solely as a challenge as a gamer, but also a way for me to get as full a picture as possible so that I can make educated statements about the year as a whole in my professional life. I know it's always going to be impossible to keep up with all the big and noteworthy releases each year, but that was especially true in 2017.

Last year, when I did this list for 2016, I reflected back on how amazing games were during that year, but I don't think I could have ever prepared myself for what 2017 would bring. I played plenty of new and exciting experiences, but I also found myself relying on old favorites from last year. Despite my fervor dying down a bit, I still poured over 100 additional hours into Overwatch, my favorite game of last year, and Pokémon Go, a title that continues to deliver a markedly different experience from any game I've ever played. However, I tried to limit my time most nights so that I could experience the goldmine of new releases that 2017 offered.

Super Replay – Vampire Hunter D

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Super Replay – Vampire Hunter D

Our playthrough of Sonic the Hedgehog 2006 is the most successful Super Replay to date. One thing became abundantly clear: You love watching us suffer while playing broken games. From the comments I read, a good number of you expected we would play another Sonic game for the annual 12.31 Super Replay. As tempting as that idea was, we decided to flip the script again, and do something completely different. Playing a survival horror game without Tim Turi still feels wrong. Playing another Sonic game just feels wrong, period. So we decided to turn our sights on the anime crowd, a pocket of loyal fans Replay hasn't mocked enough.

The one game that bubbled to the surface was Vampire Hunter D, a little-known PlayStation relic that launched on September 25, 2000. Developed by Victor Interactive Software and published by Jaleco, Vampire Hunter D is a game about a powerful talking hand that is attached to a vampire. I don't want to give away much more than that. The only other thing I will say is, we're having a terrible good time playing it. As always, we hope you enjoy this year's pick. It's unexpected, I know, but that's how these 12.31 Super Replays should be.

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