The Best-Looking Isometric Games

Games with isometric graphics — a slightly rotated view with a top-down perspective — were a big deal several years ago. Static, isometric maps, mostly used in strategy and role-playing games, allowed the developers to create spectacular, detailed visuals, and most of them have aged really well.

With Kickstarter-funded games like Shadowrun Returns or Project Eternity using the same sort of approach, it looks like isometric games are set to make a triumphant return. We've selected some of the most beautiful games featuring the isometric perspective for today's Show Us gallery.

Desperados: Wanted Dead Or Alive

Arcanum: Of Steamworks and Magick Obscura

Commandos: Behind Enemy Lines

Commandos 2: Men of Courage

Icewind Dale

Anno 1602

Robin Hood: The Legend of Sherwood

Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn

Age of Empires II HD

Shadowrun Returns (Concept Art)

What are your picks for the best looking games with isometric graphics? Make sure to post them below with visuals.

sources: RPG Codex Forums, CommandosHQ, Harebrained Schemes, DaveMcKay, AgeOfEmpires.com, Ubisoft


Comments

    No mention of Wasteland 2? Also Sui Genesis is nice looking.

      Yeah it is looking damn impressive.

      This is a showcase of 2d isometric games whereas Wasteland 2 is going to be 3d.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Wasteland_2#Game_Camera_View

        There are plenty of people who disagree that Wasteland 2 is not isometric, even though it's rendered in a 3d engine. Some expert should write an article clarifying what isometric view is in the context of Wasteland 2.

    I still remember playing The Immortal on the Amiga back in the day. Looked absolutely amazing at the time.

    I need to go play Baldur's Gate again. It's been too long.

      Your timing is right - the enhanced edition is great.

        Would it be compatible with the old mods though? I wouldn't imagine they would be which makes it a little sucky since some of those mods were amazing.

    Cheers, added a couple to my wishlist on GOG!

    Err no Planescape Torment? Thats leagues ahead of Baldurs Gate II or Icewind Dale!

      My opinion, and that of most publications, have BG2 ahead of torment. Torment's def ahead of IWD though.

    I'm not sure if concept art classifies as an actual game...

    There are so many games I could mention but if only to name 1 it would have to be Diablo 1.

    While a fan of the game, Arcanum was never a pretty game, even for the standards of the day.

    Neverwinter Nights. Seriously that was awesome. And Fallout 2.

    Last edited 19/03/13 4:30 pm

      Most definitely Fallout 2.
      NWN wasn't really isometric, it was sort of hybrid i spose.

      I think he's going for 2D only, so that would rule out NWN

        Yeah, I remember HATING the 3D view of NVN. Totally threw me off the game. Also, I remember BG2 looking a lot more zoomed in and populated that than..

    You chose the best screenshot for arcanum, I want a verdigris victorian steam punk tattoo along the lines of that Vendigroth submarine.

    No mention of the original 2 (and IMO best) Fallout games

    For it's time I thought Little Big Adventure was really great.

      LBA is one of those ones I keep going back to again and again because I think it holds up so nicely. I do hope that official remake hasn't stalled in development again though.

    To be pedantic, a few of these don't look isometric. With an isometric view, objects appear the same size no matter how far they are from the camera.

    If a game is using 3D rendering, there isn't much reason to use an isometric projection when you can get normal perspective without any extra effort.

      these are generally prerendered 3D - so they still have to be rendered orthographically or isometrically for all the elements to fit together, and for those that did it, 3D rendering was only used for characters to make animation easier.

      Games like Commandos were pre-rendered in an isometric view. I.e. it was isometric.

    Starcrat II destroys all of those...

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Isometric_graphics_in_video_games_and_pixel_art

    Was a fan of blitzkrieg series from CDV

    I would still be playing the shit out of Age of Empires II if I could patch in a higher resolution.

      At least the HD release is only 3 weeks away.

        Wait... WHAT?

        *googl--

          Its on steam, its the release I have looked forward to the most in years.

            Now if only they'd do Age of Mythology too!

    How about Diablo 1 and 2, I think they looked damn fine!

    i want more Isometric, cant wait for wasteland 2 and grim dawn. my body is ready

    Diablo 1.

    I loaded up Arcanum recently and I wouldn't say it's aged well..

    No Fallout 2 Restoration project makes me sad.

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