More Reviews
REVIEWS ONE PIECE Unlimited World Red Review
"Unlimited World Red"? More like "Sorta Limited Town and Extended Areas... Red. And Blue. And Some Yellow."

Magic 2015: Duels of the Planesw Review
Flirting with disaster year after year, Duels of the Planewalkers has unfortunately overplayed its hand.
More Previews
PREVIEWS Hand of Fate Preview
Dungeons & Dragons mixed with the Batman: Arkham series... wait, what?!
Release Dates
NEW RELEASES Sacred 3
Release date: 08/05/14

Hohokum
Release date: 08/12/14

Tales of Xillia 2
Release date: 08/19/14

Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare
Release date: 08/19/14


LATEST FEATURES Women in the World of Villainy: Achieving the 50/50 Split
We're getting more women in our video games narratives, but why do men still make up the majority of enemies?

The Four Remaining Halo 2 Multiplayer Maps That Deserve a Remake
The Master Chief Collection is getting a total of six remade multiplayer maps from Halo 2 and we know two of them already.
MOST POPULAR FEATURES Picking Your Gender: 5 Industry Professionals Discuss Queer Identity in Gaming
Women from Naughty Dog, ArenaNet, Harmonix, and Gamespot unite to talk about what they want from games in terms of diversity.
 
Coming Soon

LEADERBOARD
Read More Member Blogs
FEATURED VOXPOP Kakulukia
Why Sunset Overdrive Can Go Suck A Lemon
By Kakulukia
Posted on 07/14/14
Yesterday, while cleaning up my media center, I found my copy of Ratchet & Clank: Into The Nexus, which I bought sometime before Christmas last year. I had been pretty excited about this game pre-release, what with it being the first "traditional", albeit shorter than usual,...

Wizards & Warriors Review

Duke_Ferris By:
Duke_Ferris
10/01/00
PRINTER FRIENDLY VERSION
EMAIL TO A FRIEND
GENRE  
PLAYERS 1- 1 
PUBLISHER Activision 
DEVELOPER  
RELEASE DATE  
MINIMUM SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS
M Contains Animated Blood, Animated Violence

What do these ratings mean?

Original Role Playing Gangsta.

Once upon a time, in days of yore, games like Bard's Tale and Wizardry were the marvels of the RPG world. They were engrossing and astonishing, but in the end, too primitive to tear us away from playing Dungeons and Dragons with the original dice, paper, pens, friends and a case of Mountain Dew. I sometimes played a barbarian fighter named "Bonk the Noncommittal" and my warcry would thunder across the table: "Bonk smash!! Maybe. Maybe not! Bonk not sure!"

Today we expect far more from our computer games. New graphics, sound, and complexity have drawn people into worlds like Baldur's Gate and Everquest and away from the classic rolling of the dice, and my nerdy shouting.

The designer of Wizards and Warriors, D.W. Bradley, comes from those hallowed halls of gaming. In fact, he was the designer of some of the original Wizardry games. So it comes as no surprise that Wizards and Warriors feels like those classics. Too much like them, unfortunately. While the game has a few modern trappings, the gameplay is straight out of 1985, leaving me frustrated and disappointed.

The land is in peril! At least according to the dreams of crazy old coot and village elder, Gareth. Fortunately, you believe him, or the game would go nowhere. You are... nobody. Six nobody's actually, all of whom you create from scratch. Gareth's dreams are quite precise about what should be done, and so he orders you off to the graveyard to retrieve the Maven Sword, the land's only hope.

You have a fair bit of leeway in creating your six adventurers. You have all the standard classes (fighter, thief, magic-user, etc...) and some fanciful races. On top of the regular humans, elves and dwarves, you can also choose from many species like the ratlings (rat-like), whiskahs (cat-like, not cat food), lizzords (you can figure it out), and the elephantine oomphaz. Also, you can receive training later in the game to become higher level classes like bards, ninjas and paladins.

Of course, all these choices would have been more appealing to me if I could have actually seen my characters during the game. This is a first-person game, so you can only see your party in action if you find a mirror, and there are no mirrors. For a first-person 3D game, the graphics are solid with a nice terrain engine, but it's no Quake 3 polygonal marvel.

This perspective, however, is one of the game's largest flaws. Other first-person RPGs like Daggerfall, Everquest or King's Field put you in the role of one hero. However, in Wizards and Warriors you have 6 people using one perspective, which is awkward at best. During combat, for example, each character in your party sort of 'takes turns' using the window, which is not only strange, but frustrating. If you want to be close enough to a monster to hit it with a sword, it means your archers or mages are right there at the front line as well. Dumb. On top of that, it just feels wrong, oddly schizophrenic.

The interface is poorly designed to boot. Navigating the menu system just to buy or sell a sword is a tedious process. Plus, half the time you try to buy something it says you don't have enough gold. Why? Because the gold is on one of your other characters instead of the 'currently active' one. Argh. You either have to switch the active character, or use the arcane 'pool gold' button, which is fine until you try to buy something with another character. I haven't seen a 'pool gold' button since 1988.

Using the interface to do anything else is an equal pain in the neck, from switching weapons to casting a spell. Just figuring out how to talk to someone who didn't initiate the conversation took me ages.

However, once you start talking, you will encounter one of the few pleasant surprises of the game. The voice acting is really well done, the music is minimal (a good thing in a game that will take you 40 hours or more to play) and the plot is well written and engrossing. The unfolding story, as told by the well-voiced characters, is simply a pleasure. Many characters are even willing to go on at length about inane subjects such as their home town or rat pie, leaving you chuckling. A nice touch.

It's really a shame that the immersive quest is made frustrating and tedious by the lousy interface, 'features' I thought we had left behind years ago, and the bizarre singular/multiple point of view. Wizards and Warriors may have a fine pedigree, but it's the runt of the litter. As Bonk once might have shouted, "Game not very good! Get C! Probably. Not Sure!!"

C Revolution report card
  • Good plot
  • Good sound
  • Classic RPG feel
  • Classic RPG features
  • Terrible menus
  • Unworkable point of view
  • Frustrating
    Reviews by other members
    No member reviews for the game.

More from the Game Revolution Network




comments powered by Disqus

 


More information about Wizards & Warriors


More On GameRevolution