Originally Posted by boredgunner
Some pretty weird suggestions in here. S.T.A.L.K.E.R. games aren't really RPGs. Skyrim might be repetitive if you just go from quest to quest, but that's not how it is meant to be played.
But if you want some impressive, more traditional, and more story-focused RPGs, Dragon Age is the way to go. Especially DA:O; nothing comes close to providing such a dynamic story with decisions that affect more than just the ending scene, and with decisions that aren't just A or B
. Plus, only these, the Mass Effect games, and The Walking Dead have such a high level of dynamic character development which adds a lot to the game.
It takes at least six playthroughs to have seen most or all of the story variation, and play as every type of character. The first 90-180 minutes is completely different depending on the class/race you pick, and there are six variations of this. Gameplay is dumbed down compared to classic D&D RPGs, but it's still far more complex and challenging than pretty much any modern RPG, and the shift to story and character focus makes it a much better game in my opinion.
Dragon Age 2 was rushed since its development cycle was only a little bit over a year, but it's still a solid RPG despite it's many flaws. There's less story variation, but the dynamic character development is still there. Combat mechanics are just terrible compared to DA:O, and it reuses areas so you may find it to be tiring in Act 3, though I didn't.
There's also Neverwinter Nights 2 if you haven't played it. It isn't considered to be modern by most people here (released in 2006), since most of them haven't been gaming for that long. It's a D&D game, sort of like the classics, so it basically has an unlimited amount of character builds and so much gameplay diversity. Plus it actually lets you play in third person unlike the classics.
There's a lot of hype for The Witcher franchise, but they're really just semi-RPGs. You play as a named character with a predefined personality and there's only one class, and only one way to play the games, plus they're extremely linear. They mostly have A or B
choices that only affect the ending, and dialogue choices make absolutely no difference in the second game, except for a few specific moments. Character development is completely one-dimensional like non-RPGs.
Deus Ex: Human Revolution is an excellent game and an impressive semi-RPG. It has the best persuasion system out of any game I've seen, but the ending is sort of like Mass Effect 3 in the sense that it provides a few independent choices. Still, along the way it's nice to see the game react to the way you play. Dialogues change, plus there's a decent amount of gameplay diversity.
Wasteland 2 comes out this year I believe.