RPG of the Year Awards 2020

RPG of the Year Awards 2020

9 epic role-playing experiences

A.J. Maciejewski

Written by for GOTY Awards on

It's been an awesome year for all kinds of RPGs so here are what we thought were 2020's best role-playing games in 9 categories.

Final Fantasy VII Remake Action RPG of the Year

Having already won our Remake of the Year, Final Fantasy VII Remake is a phenomenal ARPG as well and definitely deserves this award. Changing a turn-based battle system into an action-intense one may have been a bit controversial at first but once fans sunk their teeth into this new formula, it became clear that the immediately gratifying gameplay works wonderfully within the oppressive city of Midgar.

Final Fantasy VII Remake Review Award image →
Final Fantasy VII Remake screenshot
Cloud would accept this award but he's a little tied up

Brigandine The Legend of Runersia Turn-based SRPG of the Year

Brigandine The Legend of Runersia is the unexpected sequel to a classic PS1 SRPG that basically has you partake as a nation within a continent-wide war. Its open-ended structure and deep strategic elements make for one complex yet supremely rewarding formula that hardcore genre fans will thoroughly appreciate. Just make sure you set aside enough time because these battles can be grueling.

Brigandine The Legend of Runersia Review Award image →
Brigandine The Legend of Runersia screenshot
Brigandine captures grand-scale wars to intimate battles brilliantly

Dungeons 3 - Complete Collection Real-time SRPG of the Year

Dungeons 3 is probably my favourite real-time strategy RPG of all time and earlier this year, the Complete Collection released which contains oodles of DLC that feature memorable boss encounters, super-challenging situations, and plenty of clever mechanics. So, if you still haven't played this masterpiece yet then be sure to give Dungeons 3 - Complete Collection a try.

Dungeons 3 - Complete Collection Review Award image →
Dungeons 3 - Complete Collection screenshot
If I lose, do I get the good ending?

The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel IV JRPG of the Year

Out of all the amazing JRPGs that released in 2020, Trails of Cold Steel IV takes top spot as it's an absolutely fantastic game that ties together the lengthy history of stories and sub-stories within The Legend of Heroes franchise in an awe-inspiring way. Featuring a huge cast of familiar characters and a refined battle system, this is the perfect game for fans of the series.

The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel IV Review Award image →
The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel IV screenshot
This monstrosity is about to have a couple less heads

CrossCode Retro-inspired RPG of the Year

There have been many retro-style RPGs this year yet CrossCode stands out as an instant classic with its pixel-perfect 16-bit visuals, endearing cast, and action-packed twin-stick gameplay. Plus, it features a ton of secrets throughout its intricate world as well as loads of quests to complete so you'll gladly spend dozens of hours playing the game-within-a-game that is CrossCode.

CrossCode Review Award image →
CrossCode screenshot
More games need snowmen with bazookas

Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Rescue Team DX Dungeon Crawler of the Year

As a big fan of Mystery Dungeon games, I've played a ton of top-notch examples of the genre and Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Rescue Team DX still managed to impress me with its adorable game world and familiar roguelike RPG gameplay. In fact, this is my new go-to RPG whenever I want to have some colourful exploration-heavy turn-based fun in a Mystery Dungeon game.

Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Rescue Team DX Review Award image →
Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Rescue Team DX screenshot
Chummy doesn't seem so chummy today

Xenoblade Chronicles Definitive Edition Portable RPG of the Year

Xenoblade Chronicles is one of the greatest RPGs ever created. In fact, it may just be my favourite RPG of all time. As if it couldn't get any better, you can now enjoy it on the big screen and on-the-go with better graphics than ever so there are a lot of reasons to have Xenoblade Chronicles Definitive Edition in your gaming library. Plus, if you've already played through it then there's a whole new chapter to enjoy via Future Connected and it all performs wonderfully whether docked or undocked.

Xenoblade Chronicles Definitive Edition Review Award image →
Xenoblade Chronicles Definitive Edition screenshot
Melia sure looks happy to win this award

Pen and Paper Games Bundle RPG Collection of the Year

One franchise that unfortunately flew under many gamers' radars is the Pen and Paper series of RPGs and thanks to this bundle, you can now enjoy all 3 original entries in one convenient collection. Each included game is full of charm, challenge, and plenty of laughs so if you enjoy turn-based RPGs that you can play in bite-sized chunks, this is a compilation for you.

Pen and Paper Games Bundle Review Award image →
Pen and Paper Games Bundle screenshot
I hope this table is solid oak

Paper Mario: The Origami King Casual RPG of the Year

The long-running Paper Mario franchise has been a roller coaster with many highs and lows yet The Origami King brought the series back in a fantastic way with its clever gameplay mechanics and memorable adventure that's full of variety and tons of hilarious moments. You never know what you'll get with the latest Paper Mario game but The Origami King surely delivered something special.

Paper Mario: The Origami King Review Award image →
Paper Mario: The Origami King screenshot
And great job, Paper Mario: The Origami King!
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