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The best iPad rpg games

by Simon Sage

Lost track of your twenty-sided die? Tired of hauling sourcebooks over to your buddy’s place across town? Getting screwed on loot drops in your raids? Then you should take a look at these role-playing games for iPad. These character-driven games feature deep stories in rich worlds where you’ll find plenty of action and strategy elements throughout. These are the smartest, best-looking, and most immersive RPGs you’ll find on iOS right now.

Arcane Legends

Arcane Legends is a fantasy MMO that plays more like an action game than a traditional RPG. Players pick one of three classes, and are partied up with other players online on an ad hoc basis - odds are you’ll naturally bump into and team up with others on the same quest as you without needing to send party invites or anything like that. The most distinctive part of Arcane Legends is the wide variety of pets you can acquire - they help out in a number of ways, like attacking enemies or gathering loot for you

For those that want the multiplayer RPG experience but are looking for something a bit more lightweight than Order & Chaos, Arcane Legends is great. Be sure to check out Spacetime Studio’s other MMOs if you’re looking to mix things up.

Baldur’s Gate: Enhanced Edition

Baldur’s Gate is a port of a classic party-based RPG. Players wind their way through the Forgotten Realms, a well-known Dungeons & Dragons setting. Extremely colorful characters with well-written dialog and beautiful character portraits keep you riveted to your party, while a wide range of class options let you play your way at the same time. Combat can be very exciting as players pause the action, queue up the actions of their party members, then unpause to watch the chaos unfold all at once.

For Dungeons & Dragons purists, Baldur’s Gate is required playing.


Bastion is a well-done port of a popular console and PC action-RPG. Players take control of The Kid, who’s on a mission to put together a world that has fallen apart around him. Over the course of exploring a beautiful, surreal world, players upgrade The Kid’s armory of weapons, build up a customized home base, and work through optional side-missions. As you get roped into the action, the unfolding storyline is sure to suck you in even deeper in.

An absolutely badass narrator, distinct western/steampunk/fantasy setting, and polished art style all add up to a classic game that you won’t soon forget.

Lone Wolf

Lone Wolf is based on the world of fantasy author Joe Dever, and shows equal amounts of literary and graphical polish. Players make decisions through an ongoing narrative based on character traits they pick at the onset, and engage in exciting turn-based combat with a variety of enemies. Combat mechanics require timing, finesse, and smart resource management.

Lone Wolf provides both richly-textured story as well as intense action.


Oceanhorn is a polished, youthful throwback to Nintendo’s Zelda games. Players take on the role of a nameless kid who’s on a quest to rid the world of an ancient evil and discover the fate of his father who tried to do the same. Players hack and slash through wild creatures, solve dastardly puzzles, sail the high seas, and meet some truly interesting characters on their travels. Combine all that with charming music from Final Fantasy and Secret of Mana composers Nobuo Uematsu and Kenji Ito, and you have an instant classic on your hands.

Oceanhorn is an absolute must-have for RPG fans and adventurers-at-heart.

Order & Chaos Online

Order & Chaos Online is about the closest thing you’ll get to World of Warcraft on your phone or tablet. Players pick their class, race, and faction, and then engage in classic RPG actions like embarking on quests, partying up with others online, hoarding loot, and gaining new abilities as their character progresses. There are tons of social elements, like tournaments and guilds, and a lively chat section to keep you occupied between quests.

Despite being an obvious WoW knock-off, Order & Chaos is a franchise that has expanded into the multiplayer online battle arena and card game genres on mobile. If you’re a people person and an fan of the Warcraft style, give this one a shot - you don’t even have to deal with a subscription fee.

Ravensword: Shadowlands

Ravensword: Shadowlands is about the closest thing you’ll get to playing an Elder Scrolls game on your tablet. The game features a vast and open fantasy world with stellar graphics and all the questing you could ask for. Players earn reputation with various factions and slay all manner of beasts with steel and magic, all while evolving their character based on their play style.

For RPG fans that want a big world with lots of back-story to chew into, Ravensword: Shadowlands has you covered.

Sorcery! 2

Sorcery! 2 puts players dab smack in the middle of Steve Jackson’s classic fantasy setting. Sorcery! 2 doesn’t forget its literary roots, however; players drive the story by making decisions between bite-sized portions of written narrative. There are also proper game elements by way of a kind of betting system. In combat, players have limited stamina to allocate to their attacks - the more they spend, the more damage they do, but also leave their defenses unattended. There are magic abilities that can help get you out of a bind, too.

Sorcery! 2 offers the next generation of “Choose Your Own Adventure” gameplay with authentic fantasy texture.

Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery

Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery is an odd mix of old and new in a number of ways. In terms of mechanics, it’s a classic point-and-click adventure game with the occasional reflex-driven mini-game thrown in. This is a fairly old genre that hasn’t seen a lot of traction on consoles, nevermind the latest mobile devices. The graphics consist of chunky, stylized pixel art in an age when 3D reigns supreme. The classic fantasy setting is contrasted by modern character language and an overarching pseudo-scientific meta-narrative.

If you’re looking for something new and different, Sword & Sworcery is definitely a good place to start.

Walking Dead: The Game

The Walking Dead is about as highly-revered among gamers as the show of the same name is among TV watchers. Players follow Lee Everett through the zombie apocalypse and guide him through a dramatic gauntlet of life-or-death decisions that haunt you episode after episode. The trials of survival have an indelible effect on Clementine, the little girl Lee has taken to protecting. The storyline stands distinctly apart from the TV series, even though there’s some loose overlap in setting.

Impeccable voice acting, expressive character animation, regular content updates, and panic-laden mini-games all help make The Walking Dead an absolute must-have.

Honorable Mentions

Those are our favorite role-playing games for iPad right now, but what are yours? Be sure to check back on this story every once in awhile - we’ll be updating it as new and exciting RPGs hit the App Store.

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