Archetypes are pre-generated hero classes, as they are used in Drakensang. An Archetype includes the character's Race, Culture, Profession and a basic set of Attributes, Advantages and Disadvantages, Talents, Special Abilities, Equipment, etc.
In Drakensang there are 20 different archetypes available to the hero, 1 for each profession. Most of these Professions are available in both a male and a female form (exceptions: Dwarves, Amazon). The looks of your character depend on the chosen archetype, and cannot be changed.