Game of the Year 2012 – RPG


Our Role Playing Game of the Year 2012 is Mass Effect 3 from BioWare. The third entry in the space opera’s epic main line may have become most notorious thanks to complaining fans – many didn’t agree with how BioWare defined Shepherd’s ending but that doesn’t negate the quality of the game in itself.

BioWare’s subsequent decision to provide DLC that tidied up the ending a little more might have placated some fans but the unfortunate legacy, which Mass Effect 3 still seems unable to shake, is one of controversy. That’s a shame because before all of the coordinated message board campaigns and online petitions, there was a clever, engaging universe to play in and some great dialogue and action to be had.


Mass Effect 3 wins by quite a margin but 2012 was a good year for RPGs. Diablo III comes in a respectable second, ahead of the Xbox 360 version of The Witcher 2 – a very competent console port of last year’s PC hit.

Here’s our top five in chart form.
And here’s the league table featuring every game that secured at least one vote from us.

  1. Mass Effect 3
  2. Diablo III
  3. Witcher 2 (360)
  4. Torchlight 2
  5. Pokemon Black & White 2
  6. Final Fantasy XIII-2
  7. Dragon’s Dogma


  1. I’m in the middle of Mass Effect 3 and it’s definitely a fantastic game, it’s just really well put together and engaging. I also have the vague advantage of playing it with the expanded ending so I won’t even know what wasn’t there before.

  2. Diablo III was broken before it was launched. Blizzard overstepped themselves by trying to introduce an online mode, AND trying to benefit from loot-exchange in the Auction House, AND introducing real money in the exchanges.
    It wasn’t a surprise that many tried to cheat the system, trying to earn a quick buck.
    It is the very first game by Blizzard I have felt no urge to start/keep playing, and thereby -for me- doesn’t deserve its position on this list. There have been way better (but lesser known) ones. Where is Rainbow Moon, just to name one? Where are the JRPGs?

    • Yeah, I got D3 to play with my brother but after my first playthrough, nothing really kept me interested. They say the first playthrough is like a tutorial and just for the story but the story sucked and the game mechanics were too boring to warrant a second or third playthrough. They should take some cues from Phantasy Star Online on how to make a repetitive game interesting.

      The Witcher 2 should have won this category. It’s way better than D3 and much more of an RPG than ME3.

      • You have to take popularity into account. Most people haven’t managed to play The Witcher games. My PC barely managed to run the first one on medium settings and I imagine a lot of people had the same problem. If they manage to get a port onto the PS3 or bring the xbox one into the mainstream then I have no doubt it would be recognized a lot more in award season. They really are some of the greatest RPG’s ever made.

      • Definitely. I’m looking forward to CD Project Red’s next project: Cyberpunk 2077 and whatever they have planned for the Witcher franchise.

  3. Mass Effect 3, was a great game, right up until you board the Citadel for the last time.

    after that, utter shite.
    such a shame such a great journey had to take a left turn off the cliff of sanity, into the great whatthehellisthiscrap ocean, one of the lesser known oceans, a few steps from the end.

    five years, god knows how many hours and that’s how it ended?

    not that i’m bitter or anything. >_>

    • oh and Dragon’s Dogma only 7th?

      you philistines. >_<

      seriously though, i'd have put it first or second, depending on whether or not i could get over the ending of ME3, the post above will probably tell you how that's going. ^_^

      • Yeah I voted for Dragon’s Dogma too, such an underrated game :)

      • DD was my vote too. Much room for improvement but I absolutely loved it.

  4. I would have thought Tales of Graces F would have won this, it is by far the best game in this genre just for the story let alone the battles.

  5. Whilst ME3 was a good game, it didn’t feel like an RPG and had a very disappointing amount of conversations with your squad onboard the normandy. In fact, we don’t even speak to Joker unless it’s scripted! It felt like it was 91% shooter, 9% RPG. And the disappointing ending which still remains a disappointment even with the fixed ending. Although i still consider the entire game as the ending to the trilogy. But i wouldn’t say it’s GOTY imo. That and they pulled that plot device right out of their arse at the last moment. What happened to the Dark enegry ending? As i think they were going to have the Mass Relays play a very important role and plot twist. Suspect ME4 will just be a shooter as it’s almost lost it’s RPG focus.

    Can understand why Witcher 2 didn’t get named as it is a port and i think was named RPG of the year last year. Glad that FF13-2 didn’t get named. Suspect next year will only have the odd RPG. :( On the plus side, my wallet may thank me for it. :O

  6. I honestly don’t ‘get’ the appeal of the Mass Effect series; I played ME2 on PS3 and I just thought it was a sub-par 3rd person shooter with a few RPG elements thrown in, but I guess the story just hooked a lot of people. Surprised to not see Persona 4 up here, since it got such good reviews and fan-feedback, not that I’ve played it however.

  7. ME3 = RPG. WTF.

  8. Just bought it for Wii U. Shit better be good.

  9. Couldn’t disagree more. Nothing if not consistent. ;)

    • Kinda feel the same but disappointed to not see Kingdoms of Amalur listed. Staggeringly enjoyable.

  10. not surprised to see ME3win this! deserved…. =)

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