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RPGDot 2002 Awards
Best Strategy RPG

The RPGDot Team, 2002-01-08

In the last weeks of December 2002, you had the opportunity to vote for the best RPGs released in 2002. Nobody knows better what these are then you the player and as such The RPGDot 2002 Awards will look good on any game receiving one.
We thank all those who entered their votes and helped us in making it possible to select the best games.

Best Strategy RPG

In 2003 we saw several srategy games that were influenced by the RPG genre. Five games were listed and there is a clear winner.

The winner: Warcraft 3
Was there ever any doubt? As a blockbuster smash they've done it again. Amazing graphics, excellently balanced gameplay, a polished feel and a good story all combine to make Warcraft 3 another notch in Blizzard's heavy-weight champion of developers belt.
Warcraft 3 has everything you expect from a RTS that is made by Blizzard and more. With the added RPG features and the hero units Blizzard strove to shake up the norm in the RTS genre. Looks like the people like what they see here.

However, I couldn't help but notice the similarities in the story and races between Warcraft 3 and Starcraft. While playing the Undead campaign I felt like I was playing the unholy offspring of the Zerg and Protoss from Starcraft. Arthas' story was predictable in it's similarity to Kerrigan's. However, these are small complaints. Thumbs up to Blizzard for another great game.


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Runner Up: Heroes of Might & Magic 4
No real surprise, that Heroes 4 is a hit, really! The mixture of turn-based strategy and, for installment 4 even improved RPG elements in a very nice and well developed fantasy empire world of Might & Magic makes this even more succesful than the original RPG series.

This latest version of the game also offers improved combat tactics, while keeping the strengths of the series (exploring, no real-time combat, strong storylines) and looking and sounding beautiful! Nevertheless, it seems the improvements get less and less with each installation, so I wonder what the 5th installment (already in production) will offer?


Second Runner Up: Age of Wonders 2 - The Wizards's Throne
What happens when you try to build a turn based strategy game that has ist own atmosphere and some nice ideas? You get Age of Wonders. What if you try to refine those elements and enhance the playability, adding some new twists and tweaks? You get Age of Wonders 2 - and a honorable mentioning in the RPGDot poll. Age of Wonders 2 is a nice little game that shows that you don't need a high budget to get a high class result.


The Numbers
To make it complete we now give you the top 5 as voted by our visitors:

Warcraft 3
Heroes of Might & Magic 4
Age of Wonders 2 - The Wizard's Throne
Disciples 2 - Dark Prophecy
Warlords Battlecry 2

And 17,4% of those who participated were unable to select one of the games.

We, the RPGDot team also voted to create our own top 5:

Warcraft 3
Heroes of Might & Magic 4
Disciples 2 - Dark Prophecy
4. Age of Wonders 2 - The Wizard's Throne
5. Warlords Battlecry 2

What to say about these lists. They are as similar as they get. The team only has places 3 and 4 swapped. Without doubt Warcraft 3 is the choice for everyone.

Note that percentages are rounded to the nearest number.

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