Your Favourite Videogame Towns

It’s probably just because I’m playing through it now, but I really like the Shinjuku area of Persona 5. At first I found the various platforms and exits confusing, but with time I figured it out, and I know exactly where to go when it’s raining, where to get my aijuro on Sundays, where to find Yusuke or Ann hanging out. If only Makoto were there, too.:couple_with_heart_woman_man:

I love popping out of the tunnels and talking to a rocking busker, listening to some drunk college kids, or being a teenage boy helping a 50-year old politician clear his name from a decades old scandal… yeah, ok, this game is weird.

1 Like

I’ll echo Alexandria and Lindblum from FFIX since they’re both welcoming cities and locations that evolve with the game’s narrative in a way that I really appreciate. I’d add the Black Mage Village from FFIX too since it might be one of the more earnest and unique locales in that game. In the FF series, I’ve also been partial to Balamb Garden in FFVIII and Besaid in FFX. The garden manages to be a beautiful school full of life and a mysterious base for a legitimately shady military organization. Besaid might be the best sleepy beach town in gaming and its theme goes a long way.

I’d also throw in Inaba from Persona 4. That is one well realized Japanese town.

Take me down to the paradise city/
Where speedy cars go fast and the crashes are pretty

Burnout Paradise, a game so fun it made me hate the song Paradise City slightly less by association.

1 Like

So my answer to the actual tweet was Paradise City from Burnout Paradise. And what it comes down to is the city was perfectly constructed for the game they were creating and it was always fun to move through and explore. What pushes me to explore a city or town more than anything else is engaging movement and clear easy navigation. Paradise was masterful in this regard.

Another town worth mentioning is Novigrad. Now, I actually dislike a lot of the city as navigating it was a terrible experience. They seemed to have perfectly captured the tiny medieval back-alley and made the assumption that medieval cities were only that. But, one of the coolest experiences I had exploring a city in a game was going up the bridge to the higher area of the town and accidentally stumbling into the church of the eternal fire. That was wonderful!

3 Likes

Without a doubt, Jirga Para Lhao:

It is colorful and lively and fun and I want to live there in real life.

6 Likes

Santa Monica from Vampire The Masquerade Bloodlines. It is one of the more effective opening hubs in a video game as it sets the tone early for what that game is going to be. It also has my boy Bertram Tung hanging out in the junkyard waiting to sarcastically give you exposition on the world. The theme for that place is still so good

I should replay that game again for like the 10th time

4 Likes

Good shout! Jirga Para Lhao is amazing

1 Like

Majula and Possum Springs are great. As someone currently making a second attempt to finish The Witcher 3 (and really enjoying it) I have to say that some of its towns feel really authentic, my current favorites being Novigrad and Oxenfurt.

1 Like

Thank you so much for this! I really enjoyed the Twitter thread and reading everyone’s comments here.

Fallout 3 has some of my favorite settlements in Video Games (thank you very much). Whether it be Rivet City’s labyrinthine corridors, the rusty houses of Megaton and their conical construction around that terrifying focal point, those cannibal creeps in the subway with their miniature tent city, or the simpler ones like the shack of the lady who collects all the Nuka-Cola bottles. Their simplicity and clarity in design evokes a vibe which I just don’t find in a lot of other open world games.

1 Like

Novigrad in TW3 is probably the only fully-rendered city in an open world RPG that’s felt like a real city. It has distinct neighborhoods and the accompanying architecture, features and people for those neighborhoods. The game itself also does a really great job of giving the city a lot of character and flavor and communicating the fact that it’s a dangerous, deeply embattled space both physically and ideologically.

I may be biased because I’m playing it right now, but I also love Tokyo in Persona 5. It lacks that “real” city feeling but it more than makes up for it in style and character. I love the way it textures your confidants based on where they spend their time. Makoto’s the dutiful student who hangs out at school even when school is over, Haru’s the quiet loner who’s trying to figure out her place in the world on her own, Shinya’s the kid who doesn’t want to leave the one place he feels strong. It’s smart, subtle writing.

3 Likes

New LA in Xenoblade Chronicles X is sublime, filled with a ridiculously number of super fleshed out NPCs, with changing relationships and ongoing character arcs, it’s a place that feels alive in a way nothing else I’ve played has managed. Would 100% live in Xenoblade X’s world.

Also, god, NLA Shigai:

3 Likes

Sure, living in Jirga Para Lhao would be great, until some airhead (ba-dum tsshh) comes along while you’re standing to close to a railing and drops you 1000m through the air without even looking at you.

2 Likes

that’s part of the excitement!

1 Like

I can’t for the life of me remember the name, but there was a town at the start of MegaMan Legends that I fell in love with immediately. It was the first one of those towns filled with downtime, people to chat with, shops, weird hidden mechanics.

Like, there was a soda machine and I accidentally kicked it and it gave me a soda (small healing item). I kicked it again and it broke. It was the first time I felt guilty in a videogame. Like Id broke the only soda machine in the town.

I also just ran around talking to everyone. I found a copy of MegaMan legends in the strip mall there.

Turns out once you progress the story enough, theres a boss fight in the town and it levels a bunch of the buildings. I didn’t want the town to get demolished so I reloaded a save and never finished the game.

1 Like