Zeno wrote:The only RPGs I knew were Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest, all sorts of JRPGs that I absolutely detested.
I had a somewhat similar experience - I don't remember what my first RPGs were, but the first one I liked was the first Fallout. I was quickly consumed by a passion for such games and have played most of the RPGs of its sort that flourished for a short while in the late 90's and early 2000's.
Zeno wrote:What really got me on my still-growing RPG binge was NetHack. After playing and loving that, I got into numerous roguelikes and other "old-school" RPGs like The Bard's Tale and more recent ones like The Dark Spire.
I also found myself developing a taste for roguelikes after I stopped playing RPGs for a few years. I think I would not call them RPGs though - they are kind of a related but separate genre of themselves.
I make that distinction because for me the draws of "real" RPGs (Eschalon style games) are exploration, the story & developing a character. In roguelikes the draws are in the strategic and tactical challenges - roguelikes are hard and tend to be far less forgiving than other types of games.
The story is almost a non-issue for me in a roguelike, it's all about beating the game against the odds.
For me a lot of commercial dungeon crawlers ("Diablo-clones", like Sacred for example) fall into an unfortunate valley of having all of the story & setting disadvantages of roguelikes with the lack of strategic & tactical challenge of classic RPGs.
Diablo itself was so well made as a game that it somehow managed to still be fun for a while, but generally I really don't who they're making most of these games for (obviously not for me!).
Hrm, that turned into quite a rant- sorry about that...