A blog about tabletop hobby and or strategy games, with a side order of electronic turn based goodness here and there. Now with tons of retro gaming content both electronic and tabletop. Also with 20% more self loathing douchebaggery!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Some Pictures of Wizardry, the OTHER RPG Series I Love!

Ahh Wizardry.  The number two RPG in the 8 bit CRPG era after Ultima.  Early on Wizardry was doing better than Ultima but a mixture of keeping the same game engine, requiring parties from earlier games, and basically making games for people who had slaughtered the previous titles made it more and more of a niche series.  But it had love.  It was a team based first person RPG over Ultima's more top down exploration.  It too evolved.  Just slower.  Much slower.  In the long run it made it beloved in Japan where games with the Wizardry brand are still made and other titles keep the step lock first person turn based party RPG alive.

But if folks want to see some Wizardry in action?
Well let's take a look at my parties in various games in various timeframes.

An early stage Wizardry 1-3 party from the mythical Japan Win 9x port.  They actually completed Proving Grounds.
They completed it so well I had an all spells known Cleric swapped into Ninja and turned Good alignment.  Except
tragedy struck after transfer.  MALOR WAS NOT TRANSLATED.  You need to teleport to get to the second level
in Knight of Diamonds.  I.. teleported them a few 100 feet above the castle.  Lost permanently.  Did not backup
the team before transfer.  Not sure I have the heart to rebuild the team.  I had a couple second stringers left
on Proving Grounds so I can powergrind the Level 1 Murphy's Ghosts but..

(Not shown is my NES Knight of Diamonds team as it is on my G5 Imac and its screen needs to be fixed so they can continue to murder hippos and cheating ass super Kobolds.)

A Wizardry 5 party on an actual DOS PC!  I thought I had made it further but they are all like 2-3rd level.  I was planning on doing proper mapping and everything.  The Commodore 64 has the best looking original era versions of Wiz 1 and 5 IMHO.

I have gotten further with my SNES Wiz 5 party.  Just not far enough.

About a year ago I even was planning a full Wiz 6-8 run.  I made it as far as the mountain area
and the catapult thing and it just got too annoying to continue Wiz 6.  Maybe if they ever fully
translate the console Wiz 6 ports I will try again to beat this one.  This game was behind the times
when it came out, much less now.

The PS3/iOS Wizardry isn't bad but I haven't played it in over a year.  After taking this shot
my party got teleported around a ton, Carlin hit Level 8 and now has 81 HP, and half my party died before we finally got the hell off the floor and back up top.  We did unlock the elevator though.
(Of course it is OH NO ANIMES in art so this may be a deal breaker.  Being Japanese designed the character outfits are usually.. semi unfortunate in many of the female PC's cases.)

Those big encounters in Wiz 8?  We handle em like a boss.  Ran into He'li's.  Took em on 2 at a time with
no flanking while the guards helped out.  Also priests from the temple got into a ruckus with some bandits
at the same time.  I got annoyed by Wiz 8 back in the day but now?  I will go far this time around.

And the gang before we got an NPC Rogue shooting slings from the back, and another NPC Valkyrie giving
us 1 Valk per side flank protection.  Outside of Arnika Road shenanigans we are wrecking face.
(Arnika Road is probably Brenda B.'s second biggest regret in life.  Romero is probably the first.  Or will be.)

I continue to be ADD with Wizardry teams.  This was like my third or fourth roll on Wiz 7 last weekend on
the same DOS machine that Wiz 5 shot is from.  Wiz 7 Archives baby!  Still have the huge manual and addendum too. And my original disk copy era cluebook from Dark Savant.

I would never lie.  My DOS Wiz stuff.

And Wiz 8 still in box.  With a Wing Commandery friend in box.

Everyone has 18 stat points or more, and I reload any level ups that don't give at least 2 points per PC.
Wiz 7 is still one of the most good looking "Blobber" RPGs out there IMHO.  It has a lot of annoyances
but I keep playing it every few years.  I have killed that damn starter dungeon boss a good dozen times
since 93.

But the best Wizardry period is on the PS2 and is called "Tale of the Forsaken Land".  This party was
my third attempt at making it through the game since buying it (Before Wiz 8 was even out!) and after
11 aeons even unfinished games may die or something like that.  It is amazing.  Handy automap you
can see the local amount on screen.  Spell for the full map you have seen.  Shortcuts through the levels.
NPCs you WANT in your party.  Team Attacks!  Animated combat!  Good graphics and story!  See monsters on the screen so you can attempt to avoid or backstab them!

Hell, I love Forsaken Land so much I made a tribute to it:


(Sadly and as a great crime to all, I do not have a screencap of Rui, the best Thief.  For she stole my heart.)

If I haven't annoyed this thread I can post pictures of my teams in other blobber games but this can be enough on its own for a post, eh?

Note this was just a quick trip down memory lane as opposed to a full discussion of Wizardry as a series.
Also to show off my various parties.  And remind myself how I fail to complete most of these games...

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I like to play nerd games! I am a nerd! Join our nerd ways at https://www.facebook.com/groups/112040385527428/