Order of the Griffon was the first TurboGrafx-16 role-playing game based on the popular Dungeons & Dragons series. The situation involves a vampire who has amassed bands of monsters to wreak terror on the people and take over the land. That's the rumor, though, Your Lord Korrigan has his doubts about these "superstitions," as he calls them. He commissions a party to find the truths to these stories.
You put together adventure from seven types of character classes (fighter, cleric, thief, etc.) and three different personalities from each of these. In all, there are 21 people to choose from to fill the four positions available for the journey.
Once you're briefed by Lord Korrigan, you begin in the corridors of the castle Rablebb Keep. Dorrs entered may reveal clues and important information waiting in the rooms behind them -- or zombies, goblins, rats and any other sort of creature that's eager to kill.
Go outside the castle and your party will be walking through the surrounding town, where a tavern, weapon shop and holy place are found. Beyond Rablebb Keep are other castles and towns where you must go to explore. Order of the Griffon incorporates the terminology used in Dungeons & Dragons into the game play, but it's hard to figure how things like a character's intelligence, wisdom and charm affect, say, the fight scenes. Somehow, they do, and the responses of people whom you speak to are affected by the makeup of your character's statistics as well.
Fighting is common as soon as you leave the relative safety of the town and journey to another location. Bands of monsters seem to jump out at every step of the way. Getting killed is very easy, and it takes trial and error to find out which of your party members is most effective against certain monsters. But working to win these battles brings the reward of the fallen enemies' weapons and money, which you can always use for your party's own benefit.
Order of the Griffon has an easy-to-use inventory selection screen. You can effortlessly arm or disarm either of your characters' weapons or select spells. This simplicity of function, though complex still in content, is this RPG's strongest point and is handled very well without confusion.
Unfortunately there aren't many locations in Order of the Griffon to explore, and most of the mysteries in the game's plot aren't so puzzling. So surviving the many fights you'll encounter is the key to this RPG. Some may find this take on the RPG genre to be interesting, but the game looks and feels dated by today's standards. That's not to say you won't find a fun game in this, but this isn't one of those must-have classic role-playing games we keep hearing about.