The strategy genre is good in and of itself. But it’s even more wonderful when RPG elements are present in games of this genre. There are many such strategies released, but we, as usual, love only the highest quality content. Therefore, in this article, we will talk in detail about the best RPG strategy games in the entire history of this industry.
Strategies look much more interesting if they have RPG elements. Take, for example, the same WarCraft III. The battles are battles, and without typical RPG-style campaigns, this game would look very poor. This is why many strategies simply need something like this.
This article will focus not only on WarCraft, but on all strategy games with RPG elements. When we just control the heroes and crush enemies – this is one thing, and already exploring the world with them and diving into the storyline is quite another. It is always interesting when each character is unique in its own way and has certain characteristics.
List of Best RPG Strategy Games
1. WARCRAFT III
One of the most famous fantasy RPG strategies in the history of mankind, the game of our childhood and adolescence. A masterpiece from Blizzard. The first part of Warcraft III was called Reign of Chaos. She immersed us in the struggle of two great races – Orcs and Humans, and at the same time introduced us to the monstrous threat in the face of the Undead. In 2003, the Frozen Throne expansion was released, which opened up two more races for us – Night Elves and Naga. Each had a unique fighting style.
In the campaign, we controlled the heroes and pumped them like in a real RPG, and in battles, we commanded armies, while increasing the economy and rebuilding citadels. The bleeding character was not only in campaigns but the skirmish. To increase the experience of the heroes, almost every map had either neutral monsters or even omnipotent artifacts in the form of books, items, and various spheres.
Another masterpiece from Chris Taylor and Gas Powered Games, who gave us the Supreme Commander series. This time, everything is transferred to the alternative dimension of the planet, where there are up to 10 demigods who dream of getting even with each other and conquering the planet. The game concept was based on the famous DoTA map for Warcraft III, and it’s a typical mix of RTS and RPG.
Competitions between demigods and their armies take place in different arenas. The player is allowed to choose one of 10 heroes and lead him to a great victory. Each demigod has a specific list of abilities that are improved over time. In special stores, you can buy all kinds of accessories for the hero, up to artifacts.
3. SPELLFORCE SERIES
The first part of Spellforce was created by Phenomic back in 2004. Subsequently, this resulted in a whole fantasy universe that spawned a series of games. In the very first parts, everything looked very much like a typical RPG. The main actions took place in the campaign. I had to manage various characters, pump them up and bring them to perfection. We fought against various evil forces and gained the victory for ourselves.
With the release of Spellforce 2, there have been some changes. The game began to resemble WarCraft in style, mixed with typical strategies. Battles appeared with the participation of many hundreds of units, but the RPG elements also remained, and with the release of new parts they only improved.
4. KING’S BOUNTY SERIES
The very first part of King’s Bounty was developed in the early 90s. The world of the franchise was a typical medieval fantasy. In 2007, the rights to the game were acquired by the Russian company 1C, which changed the setting and turned this project into a real work of art.
This series of games is almost an exact copy of Heroes of Might and Magic in terms of gameplay. An interesting and addicting turn-based strategy game with RPG elements. Subsequently, King’s Bounty was replenished with a number of all kinds of additions with new races, sub-factions, heroes, cards, and other goodness.
5. DISCIPLES SERIES
A series of turn-based strategy games with RPG elements set in the fantasy world of Nevendaar. At the very beginning of the campaign, the player is given the opportunity to choose the ruler – the commander, the supreme sorcerer, and the head of the guild. There are many playable races here – the Empire (people), the Legion of the Damned, Elves, Dwarven Clans, and the Hordes of the Dead.
In the gameplay, the main factor is three points – the improvement of the capital (which in turn gives bonuses), the use of heroes in the war, and the battle mode. Each race has individual tactics and strategies that you need to be able to use correctly. Otherwise, the fiasco is guaranteed. There are no strong or weak factions here. There is only the skill of the player.
6. HEROES OF MIGHT AND MAGIC SERIES
Who in the modern age has not yet tasted the “Heroes of Might and Magic”? Perhaps, if there are such, then there are very few of them. Most of the connoisseurs of strategies have already played in many wonderful projects from the New World. By the way, it is no longer news to anyone that later the domestic company Nival joined the development of games, flooding the setting of “Heroes” with Slavic names.
At the moment, there are already at least 7 parts, and each of them has interesting gameplay in its own way. The most recent episodes of the series, starting with the 5th, look especially attractive. There are a lot of Slavic names, interesting factions, and wonderful heroes. Insanely beautiful graphics, excellent turn-based gameplay, and just a storm of positive emotions. Of particular interest are RPG elements that only adorn the series.
7. THE BANNER SAGA SERIES
Cartoon tactical RPG from Stoic Studio. The action takes place in a world based on Nordic mythology. That is, runes, valky valkyries and ledungsmann side by side with giants will be your companions as you progress. The main storyline talks about the confrontation between people and their giant allies with the warlike race of Drags.
The graphics here look cartoonish, and the gameplay is reminiscent of the Shining Force style. That is, you have to manage the hero and the allied troops that accompany him. A separate plus is the ability to make decisions yourself and lead your warriors along their own path.
8. SPACE RANGERS 2
Space Rangers 2 is not only a real-time strategy about the future but also an excellent RPG. The player acts as a volunteer ranger who went to war with an evil race of robots, who call themselves the Dominators. The action of the game has been moved to the 3000s from our era.
Most of the game takes place in space. The player has to face not only intelligent robots but also quite adequate aliens. The powerful races of the galaxy are represented People, Maloki, Pelengi, Feyane and Gaalese. It is also interesting that some do not even know which genre to rank “Space Rangers 2”. There are many elements of RPG, arcade, text quest, flight simulator, and even trade. Without a doubt, this game is considered the best of all is that at one time supplied to the table by Russian producers.
9. XCOM 2
In the second part of the revived Firaxis Games series about the war with aliens, the invaders nevertheless invaded our system and established total control on the ground. Players will be offered to lead a resistance squad, which will become the new cell of XCOM and save humanity.
The strategic basis here is closely intertwined with tactical and role-playing elements: all fighters receive individual equipment from the players, gain experience and develop unique abilities, and battles take place on a field marked by squares.
10. AGE OF WONDERS SERIES
The most famous series of 4X-turn-based strategies with a well-thought-out history of the world, techno-magic, and various races that are often in a state of conflict.
The last part is performed in a sci-fi setting, while the four previous ones are classic fantasy with turn-based battles, city development, and resource management. All games feature RPG heroes with certain classes and specializations that lead armies of players into battle and participate in story events.
11. BATTLE BROTHERS
An exciting tactical indie strategy game about a free squad of mercenaries to be controlled by players. A distinctive feature of the game is freedom of action: you yourself decide whether to enter your wards in government service, earn money by hunting monsters or rob local aristocrats.
Moreover, each of your fighters will have their own character, strengths and weaknesses, specialization, and need for equipment.
12. STARCRAFT II
Another game from Blizzard that will take players into the sci-fi world. The field of conflict here, unlike WarCraft, is space exploration, and the main opposing factions are humans, insect-like zerg, and highly developed protos.
In addition to the classic real-time strategy mode, the project contains story missions performed in the manner of role-playing games, as well as pumpable heroes for each of the races presented.
13. KINGDOM RUSH SERIES
A popular series of games in the strategy subgenre tower defense popular on PC and mobile devices. Kingdom Rush gained popularity not only due to its charming art and high replayability but also due to the original system of heroes participating in the battle, which are directly controlled by the players.
Characters complement defensive towers, develop, and can freely move around the field, which brings RPG elements into the gameplay.
14. WARHAMMER 40,000: DAWN OF WAR II
In the Dawn of War sub-series, the epic strategy game Warhammer has moved away from the usual RTS elements of base building and resource extraction, giving way to role-playing game mechanics.
You re-enter the conflict on behalf of Space Marines, Orcs, Tyranids, or Eldar, but control only a handful of disparate squads led by commanders. All units differ in weapons and abilities, and can also use consumables found on maps in battle.
15. MORDHEIM: CITY OF THE DAMNED
A turn-based game based on the Warhammer Fantasy universe, inspired by the Mordheim board game from Games Workshop. Players lead small armies of the Sisters of Sigmar, Skaven, the Taken cult, or Imperial mercenaries into battle.
Fights on the streets of the City of the Damned are fought for the coveted Wyrdstone – a resource that appeared in Mordheim as a result of the fall of a two-tailed camet. RPG elements are contained in the management of the squad, each fighter of which is forced to develop in order to survive another night.
16. MUTANT YEAR ZERO: ROAD TO EDEN
An XCOM-style combat RPG adventure in which you control a small squad of anthropomorphic mutant beasts as they travel through an apocalyptic land.
Before the next sortie, you will have to think over the routes and stock up on provisions, and the stealth mechanic will help your squad to avoid unwanted ones. The heroes are expected to develop and take part in the plot scenes.
Tactical turn-based strategy based on BattleTech – a sci-fi universe of the distant future, where most conflicts on a planetary scale are resolved using battles on battle mechs.
The project will give the fans of the universe a detailed technique and excellent graphics, as well as tactical capabilities borrowed from the board game of the same name, and a role-playing system for character development.
18. LEGENDS OF EISENWALD
In Legends of Eisenwald, players travel with their squad to the fictional state of Eisenwald, participate in turn-based battles and complete various assignments, similar to the games in the King’s Bounty series or Heroes of Might and Magiс.
Among the distinguishing features of the project: an atmospheric story campaign, a good overall picture, a unique combat system, as well as atypical opportunities for the development of heroes and ordinary fighters.
19. PHOENIX POINT
Phoenix Point is very similar to XCOM. Even the pandorovirus thawed due to global warming, which turns living organisms into monsters controlled by a single mind, has an alien origin.
You will be in charge of both a modular base and a squad that can be developed, equipped, and sent to dangerous missions. Unless here you will also have to deal with several factions, very different in their views on the nightmare happening around.
20. THEA 2: THE SHATTERING
A remarkable survival strategy game with RPG elements, card games, and text quests with random world generation and an interesting plot.
Despite the deep ties to resource management, characters in Thea 2 also gain levels, develop characteristics, and make forays outside the settlement to fight dangerous enemies and get the necessary supplies.
A very nice turn-based game from the authors of the wonderful Braveland. This time the project is 3D and isometric, inspired by classic TRPGs and the golden age of science fiction.
Players control characters in a series of tactical battles against mutants. Heroes can interact with the environment and use futuristic equipment, and for completing missions they receive special chips to improve their abilities.
22. ARMIES OF EXIGO
Fantasy project in the genre of strategy with RPG elements from the Black Hole company, dedicated to the fierce struggle of three great civilizations of one of the parallel worlds. The gameplay was exactly like the legendary Warcraft III. There were heroes that were subject to pumping and improvements, as well as all kinds of units that could gain experience.
The battles are implemented as in any strategy, with the construction of a fortress and the extraction of resources. The campaigns turned out to be very exciting.
The main role was played by three warring races – the Empire of Eyi (representatives of various factions of people, elves, and dwarves ), Beasts (orc-like races, dragons and other mythical creatures), and Follens (representatives of the most ancient race that enslaved many dimensions). Each faction had a truly unique gameplay.
Another well-known RTS with RPG elements. It was created by Liquid Entertainment in 2005. The setting is dedicated to the famous Dungeons & Dragons universe, developed in due time by Robert Salvatore.
The main role is played by three opposing factions – the Order of the Flame (humans, elves, and gnomes), Heirs of the Dragons (lizard people), and the Dungeon Guild (minions of Darkness). Each of the three factions had unique content and their own style of war.
In contrast to games like Warcraft III, it has grown in scale. The map is divided into two sublevels – surface and dungeon. On the surface, battles take place with the main enemy, and in the dungeon – battles with the horrors there. There is no construction of the base as such, but there are fortresses that need to be protected, and Dragon’s blood as the main resource that appears during cataclysms. Heroes are the main force here, especially in the campaign.
24. RISE OF LEGENDS
Big Huge Games’ Rise of Legends also has RPG elements in the campaign, so this game deserves to be on the list of such masterpieces. After the historical strategy Rise of Nations, its creators decided to set foot on the fantasy path and released a really high-quality product. They created a whole world with an entourage of magic and steampunk and inhabited it with amazing creatures.
In the main role, again, there are three opposing factions – Alins (magical creatures of the sands), Kuotla (cyborg people and aliens from the race of the Ancients), and Vinci (ordinary people in the Spanish-Italian entourage). In terms of campaign RPG elements are enough. Heroes with each completed mission are pumped, get a lot of new abilities, conclude agreements with other kingdoms, and ultimately become truly strong warriors, chosen by the Gods.