In contrast to previous action RPGs, such as Dragon Slayer and Hydlide, which required the player to bump into enemies in order to attack them, The Legend of Zelda featured an attack button that animates a sword swing or projectile attack on the screen.Another Metroidvania-style action RPG released that year was System Sacom's Sharp X1 computer game Euphory, which was possibly the only Metroidvania-style multiplayer action RPG produced, allowing two-player cooperative gameplay.These games often use action game combat systems similar to hack and slash or shooter games.Action role-playing games may also incorporate action-adventure games, which include a mission system and RPG mechanics, or massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPGs) with real-time combat systems.Ultima Underworld: The Stygian Abyss, released in 1992, has been cited as the first RPG to feature first-person action in a 3D environment.
It was a party-based action RPG, with the player controlling a party of four characters at the same time in a side-scrolling view.
That same year, Square's Seiken Densetsu 3 allowed a number of different possible storyline paths and endings depending on which combination of characters the player selected.
The game also introduced a class-change system incorporating light-dark alignments.
The game has remained influential through to the present day, with its ring menu system still used in modern games and its cooperative multiplayer mentioned as an influence on games such as Dungeon Siege III (2011).
is considered "one of the finest examples of action/RPG gaming", combining platforming elements and challenging puzzles with an innovative storyline revolving around entering people's dreams and dealing with mature themes.