Top 10 Best Fantasy Worlds In Gaming

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Top 10 Best Fantasy Worlds In Gaming

VOICE OVER: Callum Janes WRITTEN BY: Johnny Reynolds
These fantasy worlds made their respective games a joy to experience! For this list, we'll be looking at the most magical and mystical worlds we've had the pleasure of exploring in video games. Our countdown includes Hyrule from "The Legend of Zelda" series (1987-), the Underground from "Undertale" (2015), Thedas from the "Dragon Age" series (2009-), Azeroth from the "Warcraft" series (1994-), and more!
Transcript
Script written by Johnny Reynolds

These fantasy worlds made their respective games a joy to experience! For this list, we’ll be looking at the most magical and mystical worlds we’ve had the pleasure of exploring in video games. Our countdown includes Hyrule from "The Legend of Zelda" series (1987-), the Underground from "Undertale" (2015), Thedas from the "Dragon Age" series (2009-), Azeroth from the "Warcraft" series (1994-), and more! Which fantasy world did you love playing through? Head to the comments and let us know.

#10: Britannia

“Ultima” Series (1981-2013)

In an era of sprawling, open environments and realistic graphics, the world of “Ultima” may not look that impressive. But in its own time, the series was a groundbreaking way to journey through a fantastical landscape. Set in Britannia, formerly known as Sosaria, the “Ultima” series did a wonderful job at adapting the tabletop RPG experience into electronic form. Part of what made it work so well was being able to interact with a fantasy world; for many, it was the first time. As the series spans multiple centuries across several ages, Britannia’s history unfolds across its entries to become deeper and make it feel like a well-established kingdom. If not for “Ultima’s” Britannia, we wouldn’t have so many other great RPG worlds.

#9: The Underground

“Undertale” (2015)

Like Britannia, the Underground is understated. But it’s filled with whacky, lovable characters and engaging lore. Long ago, a war between monsters and humans left the monsters trapped underground by a magical barrier. After the player character falls below, you find that just because the place is filled with monsters, it doesn’t mean they’re monstrous. Well, not most of them anyway. The desires of the Underground’s citizens are remarkably like our own. Some crave acceptance, others glory, while some just want to live a simple, carefree life. Exploring is always a treat. Characters and dialogue will usually connect to somewhere else, beckoning you to look under every rock. And doing so will never fail to teach you something new about the Underground.

#8: Pokémon Universe

“Pokémon” Series (1998-)

The wonderful world of Pokémon has been entrancing players for years. With every release, we get whisked off on an adventure of discovery. It’s such a joy to capture and train each new batch of creatures. While the Pokémon themselves are the main selling point, the world deserves some recognition. The Sinnoh region offers tons of lore with Arceus’ creation story and the legendaries that control time and space. The Kalos region has a rich history of war and bloodshed, though you wouldn’t think it given the expansive Lumiose City. Even Kanto, the first, had plenty of intrigue with the likes of the ultra-creepy Lavender Town. With every game, a new chapter of the Pokemon Universe unfolds.

#7: Thedas

“Dragon Age” Series (2009-)

Like many high fantasy worlds, Thedas from “Dragon Age” has mountains of culture, stories, and history built into it. Each game in the series is set on this massive continent. And while it may seem like a place you’ve seen a thousand times with dwarves, mages, and elves, there’s also plenty here to make it feel fresh. Nowhere is that more true than its most recent release, “Inquisition.” Here, players control the Inquisitor, whose role shines a light on Thedas’ politics while expanding on the relationships between each of its many races. Its world is also enormous by 2014 standards. There are plenty of ways to further the betterment of Thedas’ citizens as you journey through its harsh yet interesting landscapes.

#6: Lordran

“Dark Souls” (2011)

We honestly can’t wait to see what FromSoftware has in store for us with “Elden Ring”. The studio has crafted several unbelievable fantasy worlds, such as the twisted Yharnam in “Bloodborne”. But the world that put the studio on the map is Lordran. Venturing into the kingdom for the first time is a daunting task. And not just because there are intimidating enemies and even more terrifying bosses lying in wait. “Dark Souls” gives you almost no information about the current state of its world, instead briefly chronicling its history. It pulls you in with sparse but engrossing details, making you want to explore Lordran. This desire to uncover its mysteries combines with the challenging fights, making Lordran something to conquer.

#5: Azeroth

“Warcraft” Series (1994-)

We love battling powerful hordes in Sanctuary just as much as the next player. But the most well-crafted world from Blizzard by far is “Warcraft’s” Azeroth. Ever since Orcs invaded in 1994, players have loved delving into the stories, battles, and adventures the series has to offer. It was the release of “World of Warcraft” in 2004 that really showed the limitless potential of this world. Through frequent expansions, it has grown to include new continents, each of which offers new legends, monsters, weapons, and more. But nothing is taken on alone. As the most successful MMORPG in existence, its focus on comradery in the face of discouraging threats has kept players coming back for nearly two decades.

#4: Ancient Greece & Midgard

“God of War” Series (2005-)

While they’re mostly based on real locations, the worlds of “God of War” are too fantastical to discount. It isn’t the first game series to tackle Greek or even Norse myth, but it’s arguably the most fun. The original trilogy had us going up against deities and beasts more than twice our size, yet Kratos’ courage and hatred never faltered. The series has done a wonderful job at adapting familiar stories and characters, just with a heaping helping of violence. Part of the excitement with each new release is seeing which mythological figures will appear next. And it’s always wonderful to theorize how Sony Santa Monica will alter these tales to fit within their version of these worlds.

#3: Hyrule

“The Legend of Zelda” Series (1987-)

Ever since the release of the first game on the NES, Hyrule has grown exponentially. New races, new myths, and new areas are always getting added. Since the series places such a heavy focus on exploration above all else, it’s a good thing Hyrule has abundant secrets. At the heart of Hyrule is the Triforce, a mystical artifact left behind by the Golden Goddesses that grants a wish to whomever obtains it. Its existence has bred strife and war throughout Hyrule’s history. Over the centuries, Hyrule has had to deal with twisted sorcerers, invaders from alternate worlds, and more than its fair share of monsters. But as long as a certain hero garbed in green is around, it will remain safe.

#2: Tamriel

“The Elder Scrolls” Series (1994-)

From “Arena” to the innumerable versions of “Skyrim,” players have been falling in love with Tamriel for decades. Each entry has reinvented what it means to live, fight, and discover in an open-world fantasy game. We’ve gotten to different regions of the continent over the years and each is more fascinating than the last. Experiencing the isle of Vvardenfell in “Morrowind” was unlike anything at the time. And yet, Bethesda managed to top it with “Oblivion,” whose incredible environments we defended against invading Daedra. But there’s a reason everyone on the planet knows “Skyrim.” Its world is a monumental creation, filled with legends and quests that pull you in every direction. Additionally and refreshingly, amongst the classic fantasy races are some wholly unique ones.

#1: The Continent

“The Witcher” Series (2007-)

While it may not have debuted in a video game, CD Projekt Red’s adaptation of Andrzej Sapkowski’s world is absolutely phenomenal. Like many fantasy worlds, the Continent is no stranger to warfare. Political intrigue that chronicles the conflict between the Nilfgaardian Empire and the Northern Kingdoms offers a variety of rich characters. But as Geralt, players learn that the Continent is also home to a smorgasbord of deadly creatures. Even the most ordinary quest in “The Witcher” can grab you due to its engaging characters, intimidating beasts, and, of course, the pull of a world begging to be explored.
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