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 RPGamer Awards 2003 2003 Results  
   Overall
   PS2
   Computer
   Online
   GameCube
   GBA
   Xbox

   Graphics
   Story
   Fun Value
   Battle System
   Music
   Gameplay
   Localization

   Letdown

Story
Best...

Storylines are often one of the most important elements in a video game, and when the genre you love just happens to revolve around a storyline you cannot get by without having a good story. As times changed and gamers grew stories have started to grow along with them. Aging from giving RPGamers a faint theme of heroic saviors, to making or recruiting anti-heroes, and finally ending up in mature themes; the storyline has certainly evolved. With those evolutions comes a constantly changing form of telling the RPG story and the results this year for Best Story certainly show the fact that stories come in all shapes, sizes, and tellings.

1st
Xenosaga Episode I

When it comes to a storyline, many games tell it in text instead of speech. However, the second installment of the Xeno series took that ideal and completely reversed it with a fresh and compelling storyline. Xenosaga Episode I: Der Wille zur Macht coined itself as one of the few, and possibly only RPGs to tell the story mostly in cutscenes, or a scene played out without needing the player to control the characters. This form of storytelling managed to place even more emphasis on the Xenosaga storyline, separating it not only from its previous game, but from other games currently on the market. With this change in storytelling, RPGamer readers were certainly impressed enough to give it the Best Story first place.

  2nd
Final Fantasy X-2

When RPGamer readers heard of a sequel to Final Fantasy X some of them couldn't help but jump for joy. When the game came out, some RPGamers were disappointed and some weren't but in the end Final Fantasy X-2's storyline was decidedly different. The first direct sequel of the critically acclaimed Final Fantasy X let people know that Spira had changed but some things never change. Some things can only help but fall back into their pattern, no matter how hard they try to change. Even though the story wasn't as deep as the previous installment, RPGamer readers couldn't help but love the light, fun tone.

3rd
The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker

When RPGamers think of storyline, Zelda isn't exactly the first game that comes to mind. However, to RPGamer readers the latest incarnation of the series was full of a fun, action-filled storyline. Of course, that game we speak of is the GameCube cel-shaded masterpiece The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker which offers a sophisticated story for such a cartoon-like environment. Bringing added depth to the land of Hyrule isn't a simple task when a series has multiple years of shallow storylines. Both in terms of story complexity, and the waters that rule the world of Hyrule not only have pleased RPGamer readers, but they've even managed to add to an mostly bland world of "save the princess" and "get the triforce".

  4th
Final Fantasy XI

Coming in fourth place for the readers is another game from the oft-loved Final Fantasy series. As one of the most ambitious titles to come from Square Enix, Final Fantasy XI brings the biggest name in RPGs to the world of online play and to RPGamer readers the world of Vana'diel is not only rich in expectations, but rich in storline as well. Although there are no traces of a storyline for levels, Final Fantasy XI is filled with quests that could just gain you fame all the whole making your rank with your country all the more higher.

5th
Disgaea: Hour of Darkness

Fifth place for RPGamer readers is probably a game that wasn't the most popular on the shelves, and even wasn't even noticed by RPGamer readers. However, RPGamer staff members noticed it and even made noise enough that the twisted, sarcastic Disgaea: Hour of Darkness takes the silver spot. With a delightfully refreshing script, Disgaea's storyline pleased many RPGamers. Taking control of the Prince of Hell Leharl after the death of his father, many demons are recruited in the tactical fight against a number of other demons to take over the always fun realm of hell. Just try not to get caught up in the all-too funny commentary, you just may miss the story.

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