22 RPGs To Try If You Don’t Really Play RPGs
Why it’s good for beginners: Despite being 20 years old, Chrono Trigger continues to be one of the greatest RPGs ever made, and everything about the original game still holds up to this day. Because of its intuitive combat system and snappy gameplay, it makes for a good entry point for anyone who has never played a JRPG before. It also has an incredibly compelling story that will keep you going through the 20+ hours of gameplay.
How to play it: There’s a version for iPhone and Android, which is convenient, but it’s not the best way to experience the game. You’d probably be better off picking up a Nintendo DS cart of the game or downloading it for the Virtual Console on the Wii.
2. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
Why it’s good for beginners: Listen, I get it. There’s only so many sprites with swapped color palettes that one person can take. Especially when you’re looking at them for like 70 hours of monotonous gameplay. That’s RPGs at their worst. Skyrim isn’t that. It’s still got a lot of RPG elements — swords and sorcery, a complex leveling system that grows and evolves, a huge world that’s really fun to explore — but it pulls it off in a more accessible way for people who aren’t down with classic RPGs.
How to play it: It’s a semi-modern game, so all you need is a PlayStation 3, or an Xbox 360, or a fairly recent PC to play it on. A lot of game shops will likely still have preowned copies of the game for cheap.
3. Wild Arms
Why it’s good for beginners: If you’re looking for a game that looks and feels like a traditional JRPG but without all the complicated bells and whistles, Wild Arms is a good place to start. It’ll have the overworld and battle screens you might expect, so it’ll definitely feel like you’re playing an RPG. But with only three controllable characters, and puzzle elements more reminiscent of Western adventure games, it’s a good game to cut your teeth on.
How to play it: Wild Arms is available for download on the PlayStation network and can be played on either the PS3 or the PS Vita.
4. Legend of Grimrock
Legend of Grimrock
Why it’s good for beginners: Legend of Grimrock is super simple. Simple controls, simple presentation, really simple to pick up and play. You control a band of adventurers as they wander around a network of tunnels, but you can really only move forward, backward, left or right…and just one space at a time. That said, it also gets to be pretty challenging, with battles and puzzles that feel really rewarding.
How to play it: It’s available for PC and Mac computers, but honestly it’s the type of game that works really well on iPhone, so it’s one of the few games on this list that I’d recommend just playing on mobile.