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The fifth Dragon Slayer title, Sorcerian, was also released in 1987.
It was developed by Yoshio Kiya, who would go on to create the Dragon Slayer and Brandish series of action RPGs.While its RPG elements were limited, lacking traditional statistical or leveling systems, the game featured real-time combat with a gun, bringing it close to the action RPG formula that Falcom would later be known for.The game's desert island overworld also featured a day-night cycle, non-player characters the player could attack or converse with, and the need to survive by finding and consuming rations to restore hit points lost with each normal action. While the RPG elements in Druaga were very subtle, its success in Japan inspired the near-simultaneous development of three early action role-playing games, combining Druagas real-time hack-and-slash gameplay with stronger RPG mechanics, all released in late 1984: Dragon Slayer, Courageous Perseus, and Hydlide.The game later served as the basis for the 1987 NES RPG Hoshi wo Miru Hito.Hydlide II: Shine of Darkness in 1985 featured an early morality meter, where the player can be aligned with justice, normal, or evil, which is affected by whether the player kills evil monsters, good monsters, or humans, and in turn affects the reactions of the townsfolk towards the player.In Wi BArm, the player controls a transformable mecha robot, switching between a 2D side-scrolling view during outdoor exploration to a fully 3D polygonal third-person perspective inside buildings, while bosses are fought in an arena-style 2D shoot 'em up battle.
The game featured a variety of weapons and equipment as well as an automap, and the player could upgrade equipment and earn experience to raise stats.
The game revolves around a leader who must lead his army against overwhelming enemy forces, while recruiting soldiers along the way and with each unit able to gain experience and level up through battle.
Another important title released that same year was Koei's Nobunaga's Ambition for Japanese computers in 1983.
In the 1980s, Japanese developers produced a diverse array of creative, experimental computer RPGs, like a Cambrian explosion, prior to mainstream titles such as Dragon Quest and Final Fantasy eventually cementing genre tropes.
The game's success in Japan was responsible for laying the foundations for the tactical role-playing game subgenre, or the "simulation RPG" as it is known in Japan, with its blend of role-playing and strategy video game elements.
Role-playing games are also developed in South Korea and in China.