Top 5 Action RPG Games Of All Time


The action role-playing game or action RPG is a type of role-playing video game which incorporates elements from action games or action-adventure games. Known as “hack and slash” games, Action RPGs are typically more action than roleplaying.

Action RPGs feature a heavy emphasis on raw combat, simplified stats or character customizations, and collecting mad loot.  Combat is in real time, which is where the action part of the name comes from, so there is a real degree of player skilled involved in selecting the right action or combo at the right time in the appropriate setting.  For example, shooting a magic missile at the darkness rather than at a target.

If it moves, kill it… grab the treasure it drops… upgrade your gear.  That’s the MO of a Action RPG.

Here Are The Top 5 Action RPGs:



Released in 1996, Diablo was arguably the first modern hack and slash action rpg game, creating the genre.  With its innovative online multiplayer, it connected you to other players on the fledgling internet through its free service.

While online multiplayer was a brand new experience for this type of game, it was rife with hackers cheating by creating new god-like items, killing people with hacked invincible spells, and overall griefing of other players.

Still, it was a game that made history and deserves the #1 spot in this list of top action rpg games.

All The Diablo Games

  • Diablo – Blizzard North (1996)
    • Diablo: Hellfire – Sierra On-Line (1997)
  • Diablo II – Blizzard North (2000)
    • Diablo II: Lord of Destruction – Blizzard North (2001)
  • Diablo III – Blizzard Entertainment (2012)
    • Diablo III: Reaper of Souls – Blizzard Entertainment (2014)




Made by former developers of Blizzard’s Diablo, Wild Tangent’s Fate, and Flagship Studios’ Mythos; the Torchlight series of games is critically one of the best Diablo clones developed.

Calling it a Diablo clone could even be considered an insult because it surpasses Diablo in many areas including gameplay and community.

With the ability to mod the game, the community can create new levels and completely hack the game to make it their own.

All The Torchlight Games

  • Torchlight – Runic Games (2009 for XBOX, 2010 for PC)
  • Torchlight II – Runic Games (2012)




Path of Exile

Set in a dark fantasy world, Path of Exile is an indie free-to-play game supported by micro-transactions for vanity / cosmetic item sales.  Grinding Gear Games calls it “ethical micro-transactions” because none of the core gameplay requires paid items to progress through the game.

Online only, the diablo-esque game has completely randomized dungeon levels for potentially infinite replay-ability.  A majority of the gameplay is focused around finding well balanced and synergistic equipment.

All the Path of Exile Games

  • Path of Exile – Grinding Gear Games (2013)




A sci-fi action rpg with a first-person viewpoint, Borderlands puts you in the role of a pre-defined character on an abandoned planet called Pandora.  Your goal is to explore the planet for searching for a way to open a fabled vault full of alien artifacts and advanced technology.

Visually, Borderlands uses a unique cell-shading graphics rendering technique that gives a cartoon-like look and feel.  This technique was inspired from a short film, Codehunters by Ben Hibon, giving specific quality that makes it stand out from the typical realistic-like rendering of other modern games on the scene.

Another quality of the Borderlands franchise is its frequent new missions from downloadable content, continuing to expand the game.

All The Borderlands Games

  • Borderlands – Gearbox Software (2009)
    • The Zombie Island of Dr. Ned – Gearbox Software (2009)
    • Mad Moxxi’s Underdome Riot – Gearbox Software (2009)
    • The Secret Armory of General Knoxx – Gearbox Software (2010)
    • Claptrap’s New Robot Revolution – Gearbox Software (2010)
  • Borderlands 2 – Gearbox Software (2012)
    • Mechromancer Pack – Gearbox Software (2012)
    • Captain Scarlett and Her Pirate’s Booty – Gearbox Software (2012)
    • Mr. Torgue’s Campaign of Carnage – Gearbox Software (2012)
    • Sir Hammerlock’s Big Game Hunt – Gearbox Software (2012)
    • Psycho and Ultimate Vault Hunter packs – Gearbox Software (2012)
    • Tiny Tina’s Assault on Dragon Keep – Gearbox Software (2012)
    • Ultimate Vault Hunter Upgrade Pack 2: Digistruct Peak Challenge – Gearbox Software (2012)
    • T.K. Baha’s Bloody Harvest – Gearbox Software (2012)
    • Golden Keys – Gearbox Software (2012)



The Witcher

The Witcher is based on the book series of the same name by Polish author Andrzej Sapkowski.  Taking place in a medieval fantasy world, it follows the story of Geralt, traveling monster hunter for hire, gifted with unnatural powers.

Featuring a system of “moral choices” as part of the storyline, it was noted for its time-delayed consequences and lack of black-and-white morality.

All The Witcher Games

  • The Witcher – CD Projekt RED (2007)
  • The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings – CD Projekt RED (2011)
  • The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt – CD Projekt RED (2014)

BONUS: Rogue

Developed around 1980, Rogue is a dungeon crawling video game possibly the first of its kind, written by a two individuals for early Unix computer systems.  With a cult following, there are still version of Rogue running on servers throughout the world.

It became a college favorite in part due to the procedural generation of game content, leading to infinite replay-ability.

Rogue started the dungeon crawling video game genre, and has influenced all Action RPGs to date.

All The Rogue Games

  • Rogue – Michael Toy and Glenn Wichman (1980)
  • Hack – Jay Fenlason (1985)
  • NetHack – Mike Stephenson (1987)


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