A role-playing game (RPG) is a type of game where a player assumes the role of the main character. And from there, scenarios and possibilities are boundless—one of the thousand reasons why solo gamers prefer this genre among others. The unique storyline, epic setting, soothing background music (BGM), and the overall experience make RPGs stand out among different videogame categories. Naming the top RPGs would inarguably spark an endless debate among gamers. Well, we can’t blame them really. The list of games with such diversity and ambitiousness, in the PS4 alone, goes a long way. And more are added as we speak. So now, based on our personal experience and taste, we present our list of the top RPGs on PS4.
Final Fantasy XV
This entry in the Final Fantasy series is all about the lovable characters, exceptional music, unique combat system, excellent visuals, and the interestingly vast open-world to explore. The side quests and hunts are quite challenging. One of the most iconic elements in the franchise, which is using summons, is back. And yeah, there are still those yellow-orange-three-toed-feet chocobos. The ambitious nature of the game, however ended up missing the essentials of being a Final Fantasy game—towns with, of course, their BGMs; an epic storyline; and the classic love story between main characters. But these so-called missing elements were addressed since the release by adding a couple of events, new features and contents thru DLCs. Overall, this game is pretty decent for both “fans and first-timers”, as what the game flashes for players as they boot up the game. The bond between friends to overcome all adversities was graciously emphasized in the entire game. And the ending was different, unique, gave a lot of mixed emotions, but fantastic.
This game is an action type RPG with a post-apocalyptic, futuristic, dark and mysterious theme. It is fast paced and you play initially from a perspective of a female android fighting different kinds of hostile robots on the ruined Earth years after aliens invaded forcing humans to flee to the moon. Basically, the goal in the story is to reclaim Earth. However, as the game progresses, things get more and more fascinating making you ask yourself “what is the meaning of life?” The story and experience envelope a more philosophical theme than just the typical hack and slash gameplay. The combat system of the game is unique, simple yet complicated. Movement and battle are so fluid making combos and dodges more fulfilling. On top of the mentioned gameplay, there are times that you get into flight units and switch from 3D to 2D hacking mini-games. Another great thing about N:A is having multiple endings, although the first ending is exceptionally satisfactory. This is just an option, but if you want to satisfy your addiction to the game, playing through the entire game is highly suggested.
Tales of Berseria
A Tales series with a unique twist—having a female lead character. Unlike other knight-in-shining-armor-main-character in the franchise, Velvet is a young woman that was once a very loving and kind character. She suddenly became a vengeful and hateful being after a disturbing experience in her home town. The story is about revenge and this time, being an anti-hero. This Japanese RPG is a prequel to Tales of Zestiria. It has an enjoyable real time action (RTA) gameplay with linear motion battle system (LMBS) featuring an interchangeable likable party members that have individually rich story line. The main story is dark and heart-breaking but over-all can give players an enjoyable experience. The game definitely has an engaging and satisfying plot. The game focuses on giving the classic feels of a JRPG and undoubtedly had achieved it.
Dark Souls III
If you’re up for the challenge, then this game is for you. This painfully difficult game still has that allure of putting players into the deep end and having them ask themselves if they are worthy enough to called “gamers.” This game cannot be described other than dark, beautiful, satisfying and all at the same time frustrating—unquestionably not for the faint of heart. This game is an action type RPG that is played in a third-person perspective. Equipped with a wide-range of weapons, player fight different enemies with different behaviors with different fight patterns. For players who are familiar with the game, this game is a violently challenging exercise in skill-based battle. For first time players, the Souls series are designed to punish players who are unprepared and make mistakes. The consequences from dying is no joke. In short, this game is extremely hard yet fulfilling.
This game is an action type RPG set in feudal Japan during the Sengoku period. The player takes the role of a Western sailor travelling to the warring country in pursuit of a mysterious enemy who seeks to harness Amrita—a powerful force to combat the Spanish Armada. However, fate led him to an undesirable task of purging the land of demonic creatures. This game is as difficult (or maybe more) compared to the Souls series. It has a distinct gameplay. There are three combat stances—high, middle and low where each let the player wield different kinds of weapons with corresponding effects in terms of damage, stamina, or both. Some of the great things about this game are about the stunning setting, a number of systems to interfere with, and the challenging battle system. This game is about mastering your weapon and applying it to the colossal boss fight. Limitless optimization and customization, challenging encounters, and winning battles against insurmountable foes are just few of the things that make Nioh a great RPG.
Dragon Quest XI
This game might just be one of the best JRPGs in the market in this modern day. It is the newest entry from the longest running JRPG series. Needless to say, it is legendary. Dragon Quest XI is about a young boy who is destined to save the world—a typical storyline for most classic JRPGs and probably anime. The main character travels the world, meets people, gets stronger, and unfolds mysteries. The story gets better and better as the game progresses. In short, the story is paced very well and way too fantastic. Overall, the game had so much content, the storyline is the perfect example of a JRPG, and lastly the battle system is flawless. This game is clearly a solid example of a JRPG in modern times. It is straightforward and simple. The gameplay set in a creatively designed world show that there is no need to continually reinvent a series with every entry to stay relevant.
Ni no Kuni 2: Revenant Kingdom
When talking about classic JRPGs, Ni no Kuni 2 probably is on another. Ni no Kuni 2 probably is the last “real” classic JRPG. It is purely magical. This tale takes you on an epic adventure to a parallel world hundreds of years after Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch (another great JRPG on PS3, by the way). With an elegant Studio Ghibli-ish style artwork, the world is so much worth to explore. The storyline is heavy with lots of surprises. From the start until the end of the game, there was no down moment. And the ending was very satisfying. Rarely we see this type of game in this present world. Some of the new amazing features added to the game were creating a kingdom, recruiting people for your kingdom and battling armies in skirmishes. This game constantly surpasses gamers’ expectations, being larger that they could have anticipated. Overall, this is an incredible game. It teaches gamers about the roles of a great leader and on how to solve some conflicts without using brute force.
Kingdom Hearts III
When the two great magical worlds from the east and west (Square-Enix and Disney) got entangled almost two decades ago, everything changed. And with the latest entry in the franchise, it’s too obvious that KH3 is one of the best out there. It is purely happiness and beauty. Well, it’s about time. We once again join Sora, Goofy and Donald in an epic adventure right after the events on the Dream Drop Distance where he was sent to a quest to regain his powers and undo the bad fate in other KH games. This time he gets to visit Monstropolis (Monsters, Inc.), Olympus (Hercules), San Fransokyo (Big Hero 6), Toy box (Toy Story), Kingdom of Corona (Tangled), the 100 Acre Wood (Winnie the Pooh), the Caribbean (Pirates of the Caribbean) and don’t forget Arandelle (Frozen). Everything in this game felt perfect—combat, music, plot everything. The game tells a story of friendship and how love conquers everything against innumerable challenges. It emphasized that everything is possible as long as we have people around us that believe and are with us in the darkest days. KH3 is a mixture of all the amazing elements brought to us by the magic of Disney and Square-Enix—a true masterpiece.
FF VII Remake
This simply is a dream coming true. It may be just nostalgia, getting the gang in your childhood back together, but nonetheless, FF VII is as epic as its release in 1997. And without a doubt, this game is a visual happiness whether the player had experienced the original version or not. You begin your journey as the former Soldier turned mercenary, Cloud Strife. You are assisting a group of freedom fighters called Avalanche in a mission to destroy a Mako reactor, known to suck the life force of the planet. From there you meet allies and foes and the adventure unfolds. FF VII’s biggest change from the classic game is the battle system. Instead of having those random encounters, enemies wander around either to be avoided or drawn into battle. The game features real-time combat similar to an action RPG rather than the classic turn-based system. The Materia system is still there, like the original game, to harness magic, special abilities and do summons. The game overall feels grand and everything are in place—the visuals, audio, combat, of course the story. Revisiting your childhood memories just feels fantastic. FF VII always had told a great story, and it was a story worth telling.
P5 is a JRPG with the traditional turn-based combat system set in modern Japan. Other than the dating simulator, the incredibly entertaining battle system, the coolest J-pop BGMs in every event, and the mind-boggling mysteries in every Persona game, this fifth entry in the series had perfected every aspect in the game from start to finish. The game is about a transfer high school student in Japan who discovers the powers of a Persona, a bad-ass physical form of one’s psyche and subconsciousness, to battle the forces of evil. You can lose more than a hundred hours (literally) in this world trying to balance between academics, social life and saving the world. In the end, P5 is a great game. The artistic visuals, gameplay systems, balanced narratives, and overall impact of the game blend together perfectly to make this game one of a kind.
Monster Hunter World: Iceborne
MHW is an action type RPG played from a third-person view where you get to hunt monsters and carve parts for your weapon and armor. But it is not as simple as it sounds. It is a complex action RPG. It has a massive variety of monster hunts, weapons in a high-quality graphics fascinating world. Like other games in the franchise, the player plays as a hunter that went to the “New World” with the Research Commission to learn about the land. There are over fourteen weapons that a player can equip and dozens of armors to choose from. You can easily lose hundreds of hours trying different armor combinations, weapons and strategies to defeat each specific monster. You can also go online and hunt with other players to fight strong monsters. The story of MHW may be simple and straightforward, but it is satisfying.
The Witcher III: Wild Hunt
Many considers this game as the best RPG in history. Well, we can’t argue about that. The graphics is astounding, the mountains, the rivers, the fields, the sunrise and sunset, the blood splattering, the banshees screeching, every bit of detail is spellbinding. The story is nothing less than epic. And literally every choice you make changes everything, almost. The Witcher III: Wild Hunt is pretty much a direct sequel to the previous two games. But there’s no problem for first time players to catch on with the story since it very straightforward. The story continues with Geralt of Rivia searching for Yennifer, her lover in the past life, hoping to help him find her adoptive daughter, Ciri. From there, the flow of the story depends on the buttons you press. You get the chance to encounter and slay beasts, humanoids, specters, vampires, necrophages, insectoids and other unclassified beings. Or it could be the other way around. This game is simply one of the most captivating games ever made. The story and characters are worth the experience. The world is created masterfully with its massive scale. To put in simple words, it is not just a game, but a modern gaming masterpiece.
Horizon Zero Dawn: Frozen Wilds
It is impossible to talk about the greatest RPGs without mentioning HZD being on the top list. The game is set on a post-apocalyptic world with lush forest, barren desert plains, icy slopes, immense cerulean skies, glowing colors, and dynamic weather overrun by machines. The game is like a paradise, modern and primitive at the same time. The story begins with Aloy, a Nora Brave who was once an outcast turned Seeker and machine hunter of unparalleled skills, who sets out to uncover the truth of her past. Her adventure led her deeper into the mystery of the lands until ultimately arriving at an epic conclusion. HZD, compared to other games, is superior in terms of the astonishing graphics and art design, massive and interactive open world environment, vastly enjoyable combat system with a fascinating array of weapons. In conclusion, HZD is undoubtedly one of the greatest RPGs of all time. And with the Frozen Wilds expansion where Aloy gets the chance to explore the shamanic tribe to the north called the Banuk, everything great about this game got even greater. Definitely, it is one of the best-looking games to date.
So that’s about it, our list of the best RPGs in PS4. Some may agree and others may argue. And yes, there are others games worth mentioning. But for now, let’s all hope many RPG titles will come for all of us to experience. Happy gaming everyone!