What's the best commercial CRPG series?

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Bill Loguidice
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Final Fantasy Series and other thoughts

Yeah, but as a ComputerRPG series, Final Fantasy, even in its successful MMORPG form, has not exactly been a series blockbuster. The CRPG phenomenon has mostly been a Western one, with Western-style games. Personally, none of the games in that series are really my cup of tea anyway. And frankly, due to the very focused and accessible nature of consoles, it's only natural that really popular games in specific genres will always sell far more than they will on computer. In any case, if anything, I'd argue against Final Fantasy even being on a CRPG list.

As the poll stands, I think it's sufficient with what's listed. I think it's very hard to argue against either Ultima first or Wizardry second as the greatest CRPG series of all time, and both have also had successful forays into consoles (with the former even being a ground-breaking MMORPG and the latter having a new console release early on in the PS2's life). Everything else is great for what it was, but no other CRPG series has had the same consecutive run. The Gold Box series (or even the SSI D&D licensed games in general) also had a good run and even branched out as one of the earliest MMORPG's (with Neverwinter Nights on AOL), but everything happened in too compressed of a timeframe and I think the games were ultimately too similar in comparison to what was done in Ultima and Wizardry.

By the way, Matt, it can be argued that "Dungeon Master" might fit into the minimum three category, as there was obviously the first game, the Chaos Strikes Back expansion, then the sequel. There were also several console conversions, mostly for CD-ROM-based systems.

I also think it might be worthwhile to have a greatest CRPG company battle. I imagine it would be hardest fought between Origin and SSI, with a close win for SSI. Other entrants could include the likes of Interplay. Of course the issue then comes into publishers like Broderbund and EA and how you separate who really was responsible for should be associated with what.

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Bill Loguidice, Managing Director
Armchair Arcade, Inc.
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Mark Vergeer
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I think Final fantasy is reaping up more money.....

I think the Final fantasy series is reaping up more money than all the others - so this might be the biggest commercial success. If it is at all possible to actually make such a broad statement about any game as there are tons of variables at play that are not necessarily taken into account with this rather nice poll. :-)



Editor / Pixelator - Armchair Arcade, Inc.

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Bill Loguidice
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Phantasie and the real winner...

Thanks for including Phantasie, Matt. Even though it's hard to fathom, it indeed belongs both for having three games in the series (four if you count the Japanese-only fourth) and for appearing on many different platforms, both 8- and 16-bit. I'd probably have to give the ultimate nod to Ultima though just for reinventing itself with every game and lasting through 9 (or 10 if you want to throw a bone to Akalebath) regular games and a full-blown similarly ground breaking MMORPG. Wizardry, while certainly just about as long lived and just as important in its own way, didn't quite break as much ground with each new game, only sporadically.

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Bill Loguidice, Managing Director
Armchair Arcade, Inc.
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yakumo9275
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I had to think long and hard

I had to think long and hard ultima vs gold box. In the end I had to go with ultima, mostly because of its sheer span of history and the fact that ultima online is still going strong, plus they were really genre defining.

-- Stu --

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yakumo9275
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wasteland->fountain of

wasteland->fountain of dreams->fallout1->fallout2->oblivion

thats 5 games in the wasteland series :b

-- Stu --

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Matt Barton
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Note about this Poll

I know there are many other great series, but I was limiting myself to series of at least 3 or more, preferably 4 or more (this rules out Diablo and Fall Out, plus one-shots like Planescape and Wasteland). I also tried to go for the better known games, though you're more than welcome to add a comment if your favorite is not on the list. I also specified "commercial," since I couldn't fit roguelikes on the list.

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