Where to buy: Humble Store, Steam Works on: Linux, Windows, OS X What is it? Why you should try it: If the words “real-time with pause” immediately make you think of Infinity Engine games, you are not wrong.

However, the game Serpent took the bulk of its inspiration from – and the game which more or less originated this style of combat – is Darklands.

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Where to buy: Directly from developers, GOG, Steam Works on: Windows, Linux, OS X What is it? Why you should try it: Fans of games such as Diablo and Torchlight didn’t have many games to look forward to this year.

The third entry in the Van Helsing series was somewhat underwhelming, and the big publishers didn’t have much to contribute either. With its named protagonist (unusual for the genre), novel jumping mechanic used both for combat and puzzle-solving, and an interesting setting in which magic and science co-exist, this Bulgarian indie is a welcome addition to the genre.

It’s not particularly surprising that they wanted to make a game reminiscent of Planescape: Torment, Icewind Dale and Baldur’s Gate 2 – games that made their reputation as Interplay’s Black Isle and forever earned them a place in the hearts of all c RPG aficionados.

If these names mean anything to you, you probably don’t need any further convincing.

Dont worry though, as the character models all resemble humans anyway.

Theres numerous species of people here that you will be able to befriend and potentially become your love partner.

Much like that game was set in a meticulously researched medieval Germany, Serpent in the Staglands takes place in a Late Bronze Age Transylvania-inspired landscape, mixing up historical accuracy and fantasy to a delightful result.

It also inherited a certain stance towards hand-holding the player too much – there are no auto map markers or magically produced, neat journal entries. Have fun deciphering messages and writing your own notes about quests in this decidedly retro RPG.

The games are sorted by release date, with unreleased ones at the end of the list. Why you should try it: It’s another solid year for tactical RPG fans.