After Dragon Quest succeeded in bringing RPGs to a wider audience, the Japanese role-playing market, for lack of a better phrase, went absolutely bananas. Now deemed a “golden age” of RPGs, the late '80s to mid-'90s saw the beginnings of soon-to-be classics like The Legend of Zelda, Phantasy Star, Castlevania, Final Fantasy, Sweet Home--which, despite being an RPG, helped to define later survival horror titles--the Mana series, Chrono Trigger, and the Megami Tensai series--which was one of the first set of video game RPGs to almost completely drop the high fantasy aesthetic for a sci-fi one. Needless to say, these games, among others, all helped to turn a whole generation of gamers into a new kind of RPG fanatic.
The West, meanwhile, hit something of a lull in the mid-'90s. PC-based RPGs had grown increasingly repetitive, and developers found themselves unable to keep up with the stream of PC hardware upgrades of the period. Players became bored, eventually moving to the then-improving genres of first-person shooters, action games, and real-time strategies. And since JRPGs were only getting better--and more accessible--the legacies of those classic PC-based RPGs of yesteryear appeared to be coming to an end.