Now (Re)Playing: Wizardry 8 (Which Needs More Respect!)

Wiz800016Ha.  So, you thought I was taking the day off? Ha! Actually, I had some fun stuff to take care of with a friend, but now I’m back. Anyway, I was talking with some folks recently about the classic Wizardry series and it turns out a few too many people who don’t play a lot of PC games seem to think that series is from Japan. Eek. Granted, there’s hasn’t been a North American-made game since Sir-Tech Canada flamed out after the final “official” game in the series, Wizardry 8. Now, I’m not some flag-waving jingoist starting trouble, kids – I own a bunch of import Wizardry titles including a few Japan-only games and nearly all the ports and remakes of the original seven Sir-Tech releases. W8 was only released in limited qualities around the world and despite positive reviews, it didn’t exactly gain as huge a following as it should have and to date, has never been re-released or remade. Yep, I think that needs to be changed…

Anyway, I recently reinstalled the game, imported characters and gear from an old save file and yep, the game is still pretty amazing stuff. given the huge revival in “classic” RPGs that has brought gamers a bunch of indie titles that are based on games like Wizardry, The Bard’s Tale, Dungeon Master and Might and Magic (among others), I say it’s time to shake a tree and get a nice HD remake out there for a few platforms. Of course, given the rights seem to currently reside in Japan, I’d love to see the originals get broken off from the other games and get reintroduced to today’s gamers just so they can see where it all began. Granted, a more efficient mapping system (as an option for casual players) would be an excellent addition (for you mobile or tablet users, you swipey devils, you!) as well as the (optional) ability to share other player’s created party members (as in Dragon’s Dogma).

Despite its good looks and “hardcore” gameplay, I’m not at all interested in SOE’s upcoming Wizardry Online because, well… it’s online only (Wizardry has always been a single player experience) and features mandatory PvP (player versus player), which means going at your own pace is insane and impossible because you’re at the mercy of some jerk who wants to kill your character and steal your stuff. Bleh. No thanks. I wish the team and the game success, but I won’t go near their product without a way to play without any outside annoyances. I’d bet if the series got a Kickstarter going for HD versions, it would rake in its target in under two weeks at most. Anyway, let me shut up and get back to the game. Despite being high-leveled, I’m nearly getting stomped by some Rapax enemies and their fireproof, magic-slinging ways…

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