Isometric games are simple to understand once you’re aware of the two major perspectives in video games. They’re distinct so you can’t mistake one for the other.
- First-Person View: You view the game directly from your character’s perspective. A classic example of a first-person game is Call of Duty: Modern Warfare. In a Call of Duty game, you can only see the hands of your character. Thus, you can see what your character is holding.
- Third-Person View: In the third-person view, the camera is moved to an over-the-shoulder position. A great example of a third-person game is Uncharted 4. Instead of experiencing the events of the game directly from your character’s eyes, you’ll be observing your character from the back. Picture a drone capturing a person’s activities, sort of like a guardian angel.
Mind you, these two perspectives are different from 2D games, which are side-scrolling titles. Now, moving on to isometric games, players will view the game from a parallel camera angle. The best way to understand isometric games is by considering an example; Disco Elysium is a prime one.
Also Related: Is Perfect Game Disco Elysium on Game Pass?
Reasons to Give Isometric Games a Chance
Maybe you’ve been playing too many FPS lately; Or you’re a fan of 2D games like Dead Cells and you’re bored. The reality is that you need to expand your collection by trying out some isometric games. They’re different from what you’re used to playing by a long mile. That said, three reasons you should play isometric games are:
- Uninterrupted Gameplay: Due to the nature of isometric games and their camera angles, you don’t miss any part of the action. You don’t have to manage the camera angle like you would do in a GTA game.
- Perfect for Strategy Games: If you’ve been itching to pick up a strategy game, isometric games are perfect options. The more robust view of the action and gameplay gives you the chance to cover your blind spots.
- Funky Art Style: The funky art style is playful, quirky, and distinct. It’s pleasingly rougher than the art styles in 2D and 3D games.
8 Isometric Games to Add to Your Bucket List
Isometric games can feature robust RPG mechanics or just borrow a few aspects to flesh out the gameplay. So, these games tend to be individually distinct because the genre doesn’t have as many limitations as players think. For one, Disco Elysium is an RPG that barely offers combat opportunities.
#1: Baldur’s Gate 3 | Supported Platforms: PlayStation, Xbox, and PC
Baldur’s Gate 3 is a Dungeons & Dragons adventure with RPG elements. You can find the game’s review here! To experiment with Baldur’s Gate 3’s RPG elements, players are delighted with a lengthy and dense campaign. It’s another masterpiece from Larian Studios, for reasons such as:
- It offers deep character customisations so you can make your avatars truly yours.
- Facial animations are top-notch, down to speech and war cries.
- The voice acting makes every conversation fun.
- Combat is fluid, but the best part is that you can approach it in many ways.
- There are many endings in the game, so its replayability score is high.
- The backstories of the side characters are deep and enthralling.
- Online and offline co-op is available.
- The world of Baldur’s Gate 3 is beautifully crafted, especially because of the isometric view.
- The campaign is at least 75 hours long, so it’s worth every penny.
#2: Divinity: Original Sin 2 | Supported Platforms: PlayStation, Xbox, and PC
Divinity: Original Sin 2 is a technical masterpiece that puts many isometric games to shame. It’s also a crowd-funded title that was developed by Larian Studios when the company was still young. But at the heart of Divinity: Original Sin 2 is the turn-based combat engine, which is fluid and challenging. The other reasons why you should pick up this game are:
- A gripping and extensive story awaits.
- The turn-based combat is dense, fun, and graphically stunning. Players can rely on spells, gear, and skills to crush their opponents in combat.
- It remains one of the best co-op games you can pick up.
- You need two to three playthroughs to fully experience all the game’s content.
- Great dialogue makes conversations with the characters interesting.
- Character customisation is extensive and rewarding.
#3: Fallout 2 | Supported Platforms: PC
Fallout 2 is a lot different from Fallout 3 and Fallout 4 which are both FPS games. Instead, it was an isometric game set in the wastelands. However, the more robust camera view made picking off predators and foes easier. Fallout 2 was a memorable RPG for other reasons, such as:
- The apocalyptic retro-future is different from the turn-based, fantasy worlds of Divinity: Original Sin 2.
- The game is long enough at 30 hours, though completionists will play for around 80 hours to finish it.
- Experience a wasteland full of crippling radiation, megalomaniac mutants, and deceitful characters.
- The game costs less than £10 on Steam.
#4: Path of Exile | Supported Platforms: PlayStation, Xbox, and PC
Path of Exile remains one of the most popular isometric games out there for good reasons. Not only are the graphics superb, the lore and music are just terrific too. Besides that, the game is free to play by all, though you can look forward to tons of in-game microtransactions. Some of the game’s other highlights are:
- The massive skill tree makes each combat encounter terrific.
- Create powerful heroes who can vanquish foes with a thought.
- The League System is a well-rounded classification of companions.
- The deadliest missions await and sure enough, they’re varied.
- It’ll take between 300-500 hours to complete all 82 Paths of Exile achievements.
- Character customisation is basically unlimited.
#5: Planescape: Torment | Supported Platforms: PlayStation, Xbox, and PC
Planescape: Torment is a 1999 RPG that’s closer to Disco Elysium than the majority of games on this list. This is because it features as little combat as possible. Adhering to the Dungeons & Dragons setting, Planescape is inspired by the original Baldur’s Gate. Other hallmarks of the game are:
- Story-based gameplay with tons of twists and turns.
- Character customisation is rich and detailed.
- Partner up with side characters who have fun backstories.
- A law-versus-chaos system is at the heart of the game.
#6: Wasteland 3 | Supported Platforms: PlayStation, Xbox, and PC
Wasteland is old. Legend has it, it’s older than time itself. Jokes aside, Wasteland 3 is a masterpiece with deep combat and great RPG mechanics. If you prefer the apocalyptic vibes of Fallout 2, then this is a great option to try out. Some of the reasons why we’re recommending the game are:
- Better visuals with more detailed animations.
- It offers a great balance of exploration and dialogue.
- Tactical play is deep and challenging. Moreover, you have to create the perfect team.
- Online co-op is smooth and easily operated.
- The story is deep, featuring many twists and turns.
#7: Baldur’s Gate 2: Enhanced Edition | Supported Platforms: PC
This is an advanced Dungeons & Dragons title with RPG elements and great visuals. Though it’s surpassed in every aspect by Baldur’s Gate 3, the game is challenging. From foes that toy with you like food to villains who are capable of unparalleled destruction, the content is diverse. The other features of the game are:
- The campaign will take around 200 to 300 hours to finish.
- The sibling rivalry experienced in the game is excellent.
- Strongholds deepen the experience.
- Great graphics, even in the vanilla version.
- There’s a huge world to explore.
#8: Diablo 2: Resurrected | Supported Platforms: PlayStation, Xbox, and PC
Diablo 2: Resurrected was released for PlayStation and Xbox devices in 2021. Not only is the game graphically better than its vanilla version, it’s available on more platforms. The game is iconic for a couple of reasons, including:
- Deep and involved story.
- Great set of characters with deep backstories.
- No filler content.
Our Final Say
Isometric games are different from first and third-person games because of their camera angles. However, they’re the most fun if you’re looking for strategy-based titles. Just keep in mind that activities in isometric games are hard to keep track of. It requires experience to manage different characters at once. If you’re a PC gamer, you can purchase these games from Steam.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is the Best Engine for Isometric Games?
There are many engines used for isometric games. However, the best examples are Unity, Godot, and Cocos2d-x. These are the go-to engines for developing isometric games because of a few benefits, including:
- Huge knowledge base and community support.
- Streamlines the game development process.
- Specialised game engines constantly receive updates.
What Was the First Isometric Game?
The first isometric game is Sega’s Zaxxon. It was a flight simulator that was released in 1981. The international version, on the other hand, was released in 1982. Back then, Zaxxon was popular and influential because it ushered in a new era of games. Every other game including Disco Elysium and Diablo 3 is inspired by this game.
Is Diablo 1 an Isometric Game?
Yes, Diablo is an isometric game because of its camera angle. It’s not alone in the use of parallel camera views. There are other games like Hades, League of Legends, and Baldur’s Gate 3. It’s an isometric game when the angle feels parallel to the players. This view covers the blind spots of 2D titles, which are also known as side-scrolling games.
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