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View Poll Results: What is the best early CRPG series?
Akalabeth/Ultima 5 55.56%
Dunjonquest/Apshai 1 11.11%
Wizardry 3 33.33%
Voters: 9. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 12 September 2009, 16:33   #1
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Smile Matt Chat on "Wizardry: Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord"

Just a head's up on a new Matt Chat (and also new bookmark contest!):

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Old 13 September 2009, 00:14   #2
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Great review. I love how you often look at different versions of games, very interesting.

I voted Ultima, but it's not a fair vote... it's the only series on that list I've played
I really do love the Ultima series, though.
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Old 13 September 2009, 07:19   #3
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I barely heard of the Wizardry series, and had Bane of the Cosmic Forge screenshots been absent from Gamebase Amiga (looking like an OK DM clone, but apparently ridden with bugs), I think I would have completely overlooked it.

Too bad, the programmers of these games didn't try harder to port it to a wider range of platforms. Personally, I don't think I could play an RPG with inferior graphics than, say, Ultima IV except for text & graphics adventurers, which is a wholly different subgenre.

As for the review itself, you're right not too show more modern RPG video footage before Proving Grounds runs, because it would make the game look even more 70s'ish .

What's that dunjonquest you're evocking btw ? Is it spelled correctly ?
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Old 13 September 2009, 10:07   #4
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Played Wizardry 5 on the SNES and later tried to get into Wizardry 7 on the PC, but have to say that it was the first RPG in which I found the attributes/stats to be more overly complicated rather than enjoyable complex. Early dungeon crawlers are a bit hard to get into for me today. They always feel a bit 'empty' compared to later RPGs, so I tend to lose interest quite soon.
Anyway, a good review as always Matt
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Old 13 September 2009, 13:22   #5
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Hey Matt, well done.

I'm a proud owner of the Ultimate Wizardry Collection. I bought it because I know many "Crusaders of the Dark Savant" fanatics. The only game I actually played back then.

To be honest I am more of an Ultima fan, although CoDS is a great classic.
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Old 13 September 2009, 17:03   #6
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Hi, all, thanks for watching and commenting.

Dunjonquest is the early name for the Temple of Apshai games (later the Apshai Trilogy).

Perhaps the biggest problem with the Wizardry series was the team's refusal to update their game engine. By the time you got to part IV, it looked woefully out of date and no one but the truly hardcore paid it any attention. A new developer took over with Bane of the Cosmic Forge and finally brought the game to then-modern standards. Whereas Garriott worked hard to make each new Ultima game bigger and better than the last, Sir-Tech just sat on their laurels (at least in terms of game engine).

Of course, we can find earlier games that look a lot like Wizardry on the PLATO platform (if you remember that earlier video). I think it's pretty clear, though, that other series such as Might and Magic and Bard's Tale were based on Wizardry, and Garriott admitted that he added multiple characters to Ultima III because of Wizardry.
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Old 13 September 2009, 20:12   #7
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Thanks again for making these! I have watched every one and am always informed and entertained!
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Old 17 September 2009, 17:13   #8
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Voting wizardry simply because of the lil tune it had.. in which about 1000s of variations of the mod were spawned.. never played any of them! *hangs head in shame*
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Old 23 September 2009, 22:50   #9
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I remember in my elementary school, sometimes we had an hour with Apple II computers. Typically, the class was encouraged to play with LOGO language. I came across a box of Wizardry and I think was the only person who played it in my class along with a buddy. Never got past the character creation stage, but it was real exciting.

Years later I got into Might & Magic. Too bad the early Wizardry installments never got ported to the Amiga. When Bane Of The Cosmic Forge came out for the Amiga, the gfx and load time were quite disappointing. Thus, I gave up on the series.
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