2022 was another notable year for RPGs, from all-new IPs from the predecessors of the Souls subgenre to indie darlings that surprised in more ways than one. Whether you prefer your RPGs a little more casual or lean more towards sleek action, there’s plenty to fill entire weeks of your free time.
Notably, it was an especially great year for RPG fans. Almost every game on this list comes from Japan, although something like Elden Ring can’t really be classified as a JRPG. Without further ado, here is our list of the best RPGs released in 2022.
Also on Wccftech’s Best Games of 2022 lists: Shooters, Fighting, Platformer, Adventure, Indie, Action, Horror, Multiplayer, and Strategy/Simulation.
Wired West (8)
Former Arkane founder Raphaël Colantonio created it all with Weird West, his first game from the indie WolfEye Studios. The game designer, formerly known for his work on Arx Fatalis, Dishonored, and Prey, has successfully translated elements of immersive simulation (usually reserved for first-person games) into an isometric RPG. Western Strange has received a warm reception from gamers, selling 400,000 units in less than two weeks since its release, and from critics alike. Francesco de Meo wrote:
With its engrossing story, enigmatic characters, powerful role-playing mechanics, and brilliantly designed immersive simulation features, Weird West is one of very few role-playing games on the market where players shape the world through their choices and actions. Some balancing issues and technical issues spoil the experience, but if you’re looking for a truly immersive RPG to play, you won’t find anything better than Weird West.
Elden Ring (10)
Our 2022 list of the best RPGs couldn’t avoid mentioning Elden Ring, arguably one of the most ambitious role-playing games yet. Bringing the small dungeons into an open world might intimidate some from embarking on a grand adventure in The Lands Between but soon after venturing in and out of Tree Sentinel, players will find themselves in an action RPG that constantly surprises players with more and more. Elden Ring gets a perfect score in this Wccftech review:
Elden Ring is not only the best RPG developed by From Software but also one of the best open world games ever. The Elden Ring is top-notch in game design, and it’s not just a game but an epic dark fantasy journey that no one will be able to forget for a very long time.
Strange Fantasy Origin from Paradise (8.2)
One of the most surprising side-scrolling games to come out of Square-Enix, Stranger of Paradise Final Fantasy Origin gave us an origin story for a hero in the most unlikely of places. Before becoming Garland and Casting Goons, protagonist Jack sought to struggle against the forces of chaos as a man who has lost his memories and is propelled forward by this unique focus of leadership. Jack is perhaps the most thoughtful Final Fantasy hero since Final Fantasy IV’s character Kain is set to Constant Backstab. This is an excerpt from the review:
He’s not an isekai, but Stranger of Paradise is a complete stranger even in his own land. If you’re new to running through the original as part of the Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster series, you owe it to yourself to take this chaotic journey through Corneria and resurrect the four crystals once again.
Ocean Star: Divine Power (8)
After the disappointing release of Star Ocean: Integrity and Faithlessness, developer tri-Ace has made a surprising comeback with a new franchise installment worthy of being listed as one of the best RPGs of 2022.
Even with a few issues here and there, Star Ocean: The Divine Force is undoubtedly a return to form for the series by tri-Ace. The game offers a solid JRPG experience that both fans of the series and newcomers will enjoy thanks to the best battle system in the series to date, likable characters, and an engaging but slightly slow-paced storyline that isn’t particularly surprising. Some of the books’ technical and game design issues take something away from the experience, but for those looking for a traditional JRPG with a lot of heart, Star Ocean: The Divine Force is the game to get.
Xenoblade Chronicles 3 (10)
Monolith Soft once again delivered a great game with Xenoblade Chronicles 3, not only worthy of being ranked among the best RPGs of 2022 but also among the best JRPGs of all time. The game received a perfect score in a Wccftech review.
Xenoblade Chronicles 3 has its drawbacks like any other game. However, its qualities more than make up for it, providing a beautiful JRPG experience unlike anything before in the series. The Class System is diverse and fun to experience, the story is one of the best in series history, and the aesthetic and production values are incredibly high. This game offers a lot of content that will keep you glued to your Nintendo Switch and going for a long time.
For die-hard RPG fans, here are five more titles that almost made the best RPGs on our 2022 list.