Those of you who have followed GameBanshee for many years will know that Sierra's Hero's Quest/Quest For Glory adventure/RPG series invokes fond memories for me, so I certainly wasn't complaining to have stumbled upon a relatively thorough retrospective for Quest For Glory IV: Shadows of Darkness on PC Gamer. Take it in:
Quest for Glory is an adventure/RPG hybrid, with the emphasis mostly on the adventure side: puzzles, dialogue, plenty of deaths. While the games are connected by a few characters and threads, they're mostly self-contained stories set in completely different parts of the world, from Europe to Africa. You typically arrive as a stranger and save the world, only not actually getting much of the .lory' promised by the title before being whisked away to your next challenge. It's an amazing series, and well worth playing through in order not least because you can carry your character between games. This doesn't change anything except your stats, but it was the early '90s.
The RPG side comes in combat and a few stats, but mostly the class system. Whether you're a Fighter, Wizard, Thief or (if you acquired the title) Paladin adds extra scenes and things to do, and shakes up the puzzles. Faced with a trapped chest, for instance, a Wizard can cast Open from a distance, while a Fighter may have to take the hit to the beef. Elsewhere, a Paladin will be drawn to cleansing the valley of evil, while a Thief gets to do a little recreational breaking-and-entering. For the greater good, obviously. Ahem.
Quest for Glory IV is set in a relatively small valley, but one packed with fun stuff, from the haunted castle on the hill to a camp of gypsy werewolves, the chicken-legged hut of Baba Yaga and the main town of Mordavia itself, where garlic hangs from every surface and nobody has a kind word for strangers.