RPGamer Awards 2003 2003 Results  

   Fun Value
   Battle System


Best RPG

Massively Multiplayer Online RPGs have certainly become staples in the library of RPGamers in the past year; transforming what was once a small genre into an onslaught of game sales and the sometimes dreaded subscription fee. To some, the MMORPG genre is about a lot more than just a fun game, it's the game that involved you the most. With such a high expectation on a slowly growing genre, rarely does the RPGamer staff find three that can be considered not only good, but great. This year, the RPGamer staff not only agreed with users but they even agreed with each other with the first unanimous vote for the best game on any console. It's quite amazing to see 11 unique people agree on one game, and this year 11 staff members wholeheartedly agreed on one game.

Final Fantasy XI

Taking the first place vote, and the knowledge of the only game in RPGamer history to be unanimously voted number 1 by staff member is none other than Square Enix's massively online RPG, Final Fantasy XI. With highly realistic graphics, there's always something beautiful for you to look upon, and Final Fantasy XI takes MMORPG graphics to a new height. If the beautiful landscapes weren't enough for our staff, added in were a highly original range of classes ranging from "Hume" or humans to the cute and cuddly TaruTaru class, which made our staff collectively "aww". Rounding out the reasons for this game's first place unanimous ranking is probably one of the most addicting battle systems in the land. Though basic, the game still manages to not only suck up some staff members' time, but keep us from working for quite a while.

Star Wars Galaxies

Coming in second place with a respectable vote is another franchise with a following that would and does scare a few people. LucasArts' Star Wars Galaxies is the second game this year from the Star Wars franchise, but don't be fooled by the name, as Galaxies certainly stands on its own. Spanning across movie planets like Tatooine and Naboo, RPGamers are treated to a skill system that can be upgraded by player preference; you can be close up fighter or choose to fight afar with the force. Adding more to the gameplay is an economy that is decided entirely by the players. Mission and faction-based gameplay lends to the possibility of playing Galaxies for hours at a time, but if that wasn't enough there's even a Jedi class which must be "unlocked". If you're worried about continuity, don't worry. Galaxies is placed tight between The Empire Strikes back and Return of the Jedi, so you won't have 5,000 jedi running around saving the universe just yet.

Anarchy Online: Shadowlands

Taking the final spot in the Best MMORPG category this year is a game known too well to RPGamer staff members, but was absent from the RPGamer readers' results. The dark and often aesthetically beautiful Anarchy Online has never had an expansion packs in its lifetime, but staff expectations were apparently met with the announcement and later release of the first Anarchy expansion, Anarchy Online: Shadowlands. Set in the future, Anarchy Online boasts not only a full lineup of unique Sci-Fi classes to choose from but even has a storyline that is influenced and directed by RPGamer's actions. Add in two new classes, a new floating city, over 150 new dungeons, and more in-depth gameplay to an already deep game with an expansion pack and you get a pat on the back and third place from RPGamer staff members.

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