Although RPGs have been a cornerstone of gaming since I can remember, video games involving the rolling of dice and numerous character stats were typically found at home on PCs and home computers during the late 80s and early 90s, not consoles.
Games like Sega's Dragon Crystal would challenge this perception, introducing a broader section of gamers to the dark delights of the rogue-like and similar dungeon crawling adventures. It's a remarkably refined experience, one that includes sufficient depth, yet remains both engaging and accessible throughout.
Transported into a parallel dimension, the player must navigate a series of randomly-generated levels, killing monsters and grabbing loot along the way. Vanquishing foes reward the player with experience points, with an increase in strength and life energy awarded with each new level gained.
Confounding progress is the fact that each level is obscured by 'fog of war', with chambers and passageways only being revealed by exploring the surrounding area. The sense of excitement upon discovering a room full of treasure is tempered by those moments where, blinded by greed, you stumble blindly into a band of marauding slimes and shuriken-hurling ninja! It's a doubleedged sword of risk-versus-reward that remains truly intoxicating throughout the whole adventure, and certainly something that gives the game considerable replay value.