Horii introduced them as he wanted to have something players collected that were similar to the crests and orbs in the previous Dragon Quest games, but did not want to repeat the necessity for players having to collect a certain number of them before they could complete the game. Several Dragon Quest games allow the player to recruit monsters to fight alongside them. It has appeared in every Dragon Quest game and it is usually one of the first monsters the players encounter.
The first three Dragon Quest games, all connected to the legend of Erdrick, comprise the Erdrick or Loto trilogy. In Dragon Quest II the heroes are also descendants of Erdrick,   exploring the expanded world of Torland that includes the continent of Alefgard.
Erdrick's legend in the Dragon Quest series was completed in Dragon Quest III when the King of Alefgard bestows the "Order of Erdrick", the country's highest honor, upon the hero at the end of the game.
Playing Dragon Quest III with the name "Erdrick" is impossible in the original release, as the game prompts the player to choose a different name for the hero. In Dragon Quest XIthe player-character is a warrior chosen by the world tree Yggdrasil to save the world of Erdrea from a being of pure evil known as "Calasmos".