[It Came from Japan! is a series where I seek out and review the weirdest, most original and enjoyable titles that never left the Land of the Rising Sun.]
Along with churros and KFC, dungeon crawlers are one of those random Western creations that Japan seems to like a lot more than Americans. Although the more traditional, stat-heavy brand of dungeon crawler (Wizardy, Etrian Odyssey) has had the most influence overseas, From Software (Dark Souls) carried the genre torch by bringing it into 3D with the atmospheric King's Field series.
In between King's Field entries, the Japanese developer put out an overlooked dungeon crawler by the name of Shadow Tower in 1998. It would come to the States a year later with little fanfare, which is too bad because it paved the way for its superior Japan-exclusive sequel.