Anyone who's played more video games than there are fingers on their hands is likely familiar with role-playing games. During the '80s, the genre emerged from its pen-and-paper roots and first appeared on PCs. It later came to consoles. RPGs have had a tumultuous existence ever since.
Many consider them niche games, and the majority of gamers avoid them. But occasionally, you'll see a surge in the genre's popularity with the release of titles like Final Fantasy 7, Mass Effect, and Fallout 3. Each of these broke the boundaries that keep the masses away from RPGs, eventually gaining a celebrity-like status.