The CRPG genre is one of those that you can endlessly pour hours into and not be bored because of the replayability it offers. The many addictive CRPGs always prove themselves to be a special experience in which the player crafts their journey through meaningful choices and interactions.
The rich expansive worlds boast intricate narratives allowing players to be deeply engrossed in adventures packed with decision-making, complex character development, and turn-based combat systems that require strategic thinking to master. That said, we’re counting down the best CRPG games of all time you need to play next.
Best CRPGs of All Time, Ranked
This list contains the very best CRPGs out of hundreds the industry has to offer. Since opinions are subjective, these rankings might be different from yours, so don’t forget to let us know in the comments what games you think are the best.
5. Wasteland 3
The third entry in the post-apocalyptic series that inspired Fallout took everything that made its predecessors memorable and went beyond with them. Set in the backdrop of a harsh and frozen Colorado, Wasteland 3 combines satisfying turn-based combat, plot-changing decision-making, and a deep narrative.
The combat allows players to control a squad of desert rangers who can be equipped with a diverse range of weapons, adding a new layer of depth to the combat’s tactical aspect. That’s one thing all strong CRPGs should have, and Wasteland 3 does a great job of reminding that fact at every turn.
Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire immerses players in the fantastical world of Eora, where they embark on a grand nautical adventure. The rich and twist-filled narrative revolves around your heavily customizable character, The Watcher, as he investigates the supernatural phenomenon known as the Bermuda Triangle.
Pillars of Eternity 2’s vast and diverse world is fun to explore as you navigate your ship, encounter strange events, build meaningful relationships, and uncover hidden secrets in what’s easily one of the best CRPG games of all time. The many player choices are consequential and far-reaching and the combat is tactically deep. Both aspects are so masterfully made that they will keep you hooked for hours on end.
3. Divinity: Original Sin 2
Divinity: Original Sin 2 is a sequel done right of what was already an impressive first installment. The realism and beauty that radiates from the world of Rivellon take love at first sight to a whole new level.
Everything in Rivellon, from the characters to the narrative, dynamically reacts to the player’s decision. Sometimes yielding mayhem, and sometimes, giving you exactly what you want. A branching storyline and replayability are the hallmarks of the best CRPGs, and Divinity: Original Sin 2 features both and more.
The narrative is also a perfect blend of humor and seriousness. There’s an abundance of side content that especially shines. Character customization is off the charts and you can literally be or kill anything you want. What more could you ask for?
At number 2 we have Disco Elysium, a detective murder mystery set in the fictional city of Revachol during the 1950s, right after the collapse of a communist revolution. An intriguing setting to say the least, especially for a CRPG.
Disco Elysium’s eye-catching art style and its focus on storytelling is its strong suit. Investigate murders by gathering clues, exploring locations, and interacting with an enormous cast of characters.
Funny enough, Disco Elysium doesn’t let you customize much, and in its 25-hour story, there’s almost no combat. Instead, you’ll find an extensive dialogue system that heavily affects the plot and pushes decision-making as the main gameplay loop. It’s more of an interactive CRPG visual novel than a traditional entry in the genre. It’s not everyone’s cup of tea but some might end up drinking the entire tea pot.
1. Baldur’s Gate 3
2023’s Game of the Year, Baldur’s Gate 3, knocked it out of the park by exceeding already high expectations and setting a new bar not only for the CRPG genre but also for the gaming industry as we know it.
The seemingly infinite amount of wonderfully voiced dialogue options is mind-boggling. The brilliant story and characters easily make Baldur’s Gate 3 take the cake for the best CRPG game to date. It’s simply that good.
Baldur’s Gate 3 puts a lot of emphasis on decision-making. Each decision can change the outcome of the entire story in true CRPG fashion. Not to mention there’s the addictive turn-based combat system that’s just a blast. Baldur’s Gate 3 is phenomenal on each and every level. It’s a technical marvel in environmental storytelling and game design, so much so that it might perhaps go down as the greatest video game in history.