Action adventure games are a genre of games that combine the excitement and intensity of action-packed gameplay with elements of exploration, puzzle-solving, and storytelling. In these games, players take on the role of a heroic protagonist, often embarking on thrilling quests. As they progress, players must navigate through challenging obstacles, engage in combat with adversaries, and unravel mysteries while uncovering the rich narrative that drives the adventure forward.
The 1980 game Adventure, created by Warren Robinett for the Atari 2600, is considered the first action adventure. It was a simple game with rudimentary graphics and a top-down view. Instead, Ultimate Play the Game introduced isometric graphics for the fantasy action-adventure Knight Lore, a revolutionary game for the ZX Spectrum.
In 1989, Cinemaware released the iconic It Came From The Desert for the Amiga, a story with unique gameplay elements. Before the advent of 3D, several studios adopted an isometric point of view, as we can see in Cadaver, one of the many wonderful releases of the Bitmap Brothers. Delphine Software instead adopted a platform-like side view for Another World and Flashback: The Quest for Identity, two titles that defined the story of the Amiga.
The first action adventure in 3D was probably Alone in the Dark, the survival horror created by Infogrames and released in 1992. But there is no better example of this genre than Core Design's masterpiece Tomb Raider. Released in 1996, it became the prototype of modern video games, with fantastic action, a compelling story, puzzles to solve, and a fantastic character design. Somehow, all console and PC action adventures are still following this example. That's why all recent releases, especially AAA titles, are basically action adventures.
Last but not least, Grand Theft Auto by DMA Design (aka Rockstar North), an action-adventure with a unique point of view, that introduced an open world and non-linear gameplay into a game that was initially just about car racing and crashing.
You will find many other titles here since this is a very generic genre. Feel free to explore and try the games you don't know yet.