Wow! This really takes me back a whole lot of years. First RPG ever? That would be the mighty Chrono Trigger for the SNES. Haven't played anything better in all this time that has passed and I still play it again and again.
I couldn't compare Chrono Trigger to any of the Shin Megami Tensei games, more specifically: To any of the Persona games. Since Persona (at least from the 3rd game) became a modern RPGs, while the likes of Chrono Trigger remain back in time, when turn-based RPGs were the boom.
Today, Persona combines dungeon crawling, turn-based battle system, and a fairly high amount of extra features, some of which are related and require to dungeon-crawling, and some others that do not but, at the same time, are related to enhancing your whole experience withing the game; dungeon-crawling or not. Hell, the extra features are so good and well done that the game could just depend on these and leave everything aside.
When I look back at time, honestly, I can't believe how the RPG genre has developed into something like this. This type of games would have been unthinkable 15 years ago. I can't wait what they do with Persona 5.
"FRUA" when I was way too young to even know what an RPG was. It was sort of a Dungeons & Dragons-type RPG making program with its own premade game. I had no freakin clue what I was doing, especially when I was trying to make one of my own.
Started out at max level and created an room that gave tons of exp upon entering; entered the room repeatedly and kept going "Yay, I'm getting free exp!" It was fun until I created a battle that ended up disintegrating myself. I had no idea how to revive my character and then I quit soon after. Good times. --- "You can get can flipped just as easily in low-sec or null-sec as you can in high-sec. Think about it for a moment before you type." - pyber80