Best Tactical RPGs Released In The 2010s
When people think of the era of the Tactical RPG, they probably think of the PS1. And for good reason, since that was when the genre was most certainly at its peak. However, while we may not have the same number of big releases, there have still been many stellar Tactical RPGs released long after the death of the original PlayStation.
The 2010s ended up being a pretty fruitful decade for the genre. Don't believe us? Well, we are more than happy to fill you in on some of the excellent Tactical RPGs that were released from 2010 to 2019.
10 Langrisser I & II
It's possible that you missed that these remakes even happened. However, the first two Langrisser games were completely remade and re-released on modern consoles in 2019. These games come packaged together and allow you to toggle between the classic character designs and maps (though you are stuck with the new sprites).
The Langrisser games were contemporaries to the first few Shining Force titles. So, what is here isn't as intricate or complex as more modern Tactical RPGs. However, they are light, breezy, and packed with charm. This Langrisser collection is worth your time.
9 Natural Doctrine
Natural Doctrine is a game with a lot of problems. From its brutal difficulty to its terrible voice acting, to its slow pace: this is a game with issues. However, it also has one of the most interesting combat engines in a Tactical RPG. There is a complex linking system at play that allows for several pretty novel interactions between party members. Positioning is so, so important in Natural Doctrine, and if you aren't careful, you can rescue defeat from the jaws of victory with one mistake.
Make no mistake; this is a tough game. Still, it is a unique take on a classic genre that has a lot to offer (patient) players. You can routinely find this one on sale for a couple of dollars. If you can look past the rough edges, this game is an absolute steal. While there are better-made games in the genre, none of them play like Natural Doctrine does. This game is too unique and interesting to not be acknowledged.
8 Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle
Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle is to the Tactical RPG genre what Super Mario RPG was to the classic RPG genre. It is a game with a refreshing, irreverent story that does a great job of keeping things light while also engaging players. The combat system here is well designed and includes a well-implemented cover mechanic.
One of the best flourishes in Kingdom Battle is that you can actually explore the levels in between fights. This will help you collect coins (which you will need to upgrade your characters). All-in-all, Kingdom Battle isn't just a Mario-themed Tactical RPG, it has a lot of cool things to help it stand out.
7 Brigandine: Legend Of Runersia
In 1998 Brigandine: Legend of Forsena was released on the PlayStation and went largely unnoticed. However, with its unique hexagonal grid, and monster-raising elements, it managed to carve out a small, but dedicated, fanbase. The Japanese quasi-sequel, Brigandine: Grand Edition, added a whole host of balance adjustments, more story content, and an absolutely, mind-meltingly good multiplayer mode. To this day there are communities built around Grand Edition.
So, when the Brandine IP was resurrected, and fans received The Legend of Runersia, it was pretty exciting. What Legend of Runersia does well is recognize the elements that made the original great. It still has a number of selectable heroes, and it maintains that unique combat engine the first game introduced. It may not have surpassed the legendary Grand Edition, but it is a quality entry in the franchise nonetheless.
6 Wasteland 3
Since Fallout was purchased by Bethesda and was turned into what it is now (for better or for worse, depending on your perspective), there have been fans hankering for another taste of that classic Fallout series. That is absolutely why the Wasteland series was resurrected. Wasteland 2 absolutely delivered on that promise, but it definitely was more than a little rough around the edges.
Wasteland 3, was the game fans had truly been waiting for, as all those rough edges were polished off. The script here is delightfully irreverent, the setting is fascinating, and there is even a fantastic implementation of co-op. For fans of the genre, and especially fans of the first two Fallout games, this is an absolute gem that needs to be experienced.
5 Crimson Shroud
People keep saying they want another Matsuno tactical RPG. What many of them likely don't know is that we have received one in the last decade. It was even released in the west. Crimson Shroud was a game with a small scope that was exclusive to the 3DS eShop. It features a unique story penned by the aforementioned legendary writer. It is also a tight-playing game with numerous mysteries to uncover.
The whole game takes place in a dungeon. As you descend deeper into the bowls of this labyrinth, your characters will reveal more about themselves through dialogue. The aesthetic is that of a tabletop RPG. So, your heroes, and the monsters they fight, are all presented as miniatures. Crimson Shroud is a very competent, well-made, little tactical RPG. The scope is small, but its heart is big.
4 Blood Bowl 2
There are most certainly a few people furrowing their brows while looking at this entry. Football is not, typically, what you think of when you think Tactical RPG. However, Blood Bowl 2 is too damn cool to not get mentioned here. Yes, this is a football game. Yes, you are going to score touchdowns. But don't let that get in your head; the meat and potatoes of this title is the tactical combat (that has an emphasis on positioning).
Your characters will level up, you will acquire new skills that help you overcome your opponents. If you are here for story-heavy games, this one is a skip, but people who want to engage with a really interesting, and competitively focused, turn-based RPG game will find something truly special here.
3 Divinity: Original Sin 2
It seems impossible to talk about the Tactical RPG genre without also mentioning Divinity: Original Sin 2. Despite living in a world where the genre appears to have retreated from the mainstream, Original Sin 2 actually picked up some game of the year awards. And with good reason.
It has fantastic quest lines filled with intrigue, excellent side-content, and your choices can impact the game pretty dramatically. It can also be played co-op, which makes the game an absolute blast (though be careful who you play it with, as you have to live with their decisions). Believe the hype.
2 Into The Breach
While on the surface Into The Breach appears to be a classic Tactical RPG, it actually adds a quasi-puzzle solving element to the formula. The story isn't really the focus; instead, the emphasis is placed squarely on the combat. Thankfully, the combat is sublime.
You have a fair degree of latitude here to play through the combat sections as you want, but it always feels like there is an optimal solution. Finding that solution, and implementing it, is enthralling. This feels like a deconstruction of the Tactical RPG and it is glorious.
1 Fire Emblem: Three Houses
Every giant in the Tactical RPG genre has fallen. Shining Force, Ogre Battle, Final Fantasy Tactics: they are all gone. However, one pillar is left standing. Fire Emblem has never stopped putting out quality releases. Three Houses is no exception to that rule. This is a game that begs to be replayed multiple times. It is a game that rewards exploration.
It keeps that classic Fire Emblem combat engine we all know and love, but it even gives those players who hate the perma-death element an option to play it the way they want. While all the competition is dead, Fire Emblem is the strongest it has ever been.
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