Wizardry: Tale of the Forsaken Land

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Wizardry: Tale of the Forsaken Land
Box cover of Wizardry: Tale of the Forsaken Land
Developer(s) Racjin
Publisher(s) Atlus
Series Wizardry
Platform(s) PlayStation 2
Release date(s)
  • JP November 15, 2001
  • NA December 19, 2001
  • EU October 4, 2002
Genre(s) Role-playing video game
Mode(s) Single-player

Wizardry: Tale of the Forsaken Land is a 2001 PlayStation 2 role-playing video game and a spin-off of the Wizardry series, published by Atlus. It was released in Japan under the title Busin: Wizardry Alternative.

Gameplay[edit]

Like the other games in the series, Tale of the Forsaken Land uses a first person perspective. Other elements such as classes, races, class changes, and magic resembling Wizardry I-V are implemented as well.

The classes, Warrior, Priest, Thief, Sorcerer, Bishop, Samurai, Knight, and Ninja, all have initial requirements that must be met in order to choose them, such as attributes and alignment, making some classes possible only after one has gained enough experience in the dungeon.

Movement through town is done by choosing locations from a 3D menu that scrolls to the location in the town, and the options are fairly straight forward.

The Guild Hall allows group reformation and the creation of new members from scratch, much the same way as the initial character is generated, as well as the learning of new group "tactics" such as 'Charge', which require that the group rapport is at a certain minimum (if one continues to annoy their group members by attacking friendly monsters, or acting inconsistent with their alignment, they will lose their trust in them, thus invalidating that tactic).

The Inn is where characters must go to gain benefits from any level increases, as well as recover lost HP and MP.

The Church, known as 'Salem Temple', is where any parties must go to recover from negative status effects(at least, without the aid of a proper healer in the group), and to revive dead party members (not always guaranteed to work, especially if a party member has been reduced to Ash).

Vigger's Shop is where one can sell and buy items as well as craft magic stones that allow one to learn new spells or enhance old ones. Additionally, Vigger can unequip cursed items, or remove their curse entirely(though this will render the item worthless), as well as appraise items of unknown value.

Lastly, there is the Tavern, 'Luna Light', where party members can be dismissed and recruited, and quests from the locals can be taken on by the protagonist for assorted rewards, as well as the gaining of new party members.

Duhan is also the only location where the game can be saved, with the exception of suspending data, which can be done at any point outside of the town.

Suspended data is deleted once loaded.

Beneath the town lies the dungeon that is in this case called the Labyrinth of Duhan.

Movement in the dungeon is 1st person 3D, with the thumbsticks allowing the player to "peek" around before turning in 90 degree increments.

The shoulder buttons allow one to side-step, and there is a run button (O) that makes the dungeon crawl a little less tedious.

That, combined with the unlockable shortcuts to deeper reaches adds a welcome enhancement to what veterans of the series might recall as a tedious trudge. The environments are memorable and varied, with NPCs spread about such that it is difficult to get lost in the earlier levels. There is an automap and plenty of transfer potions that one can buy, ensuring that after the first few hours, the player will have the ability to come and go from the Labyrinth with relative ease.

Combat is turn-based and load times for combat are fairly short. With the tactics and spells, as well as variety of classes and weapons, one can find a fair amount of tactical enjoyment, though it can be a guessing game when the enemy starts using the same tactics (charge, for instance). It becomes a game where you as the player must learn what the enemy is capable of through the painful process of live (or die) and learn. NPCs will give you clues and you might actually want to read them the first time through.

Cutscenes are sparse, with most encounters being done in a paper-doll style where text appears below the image of the NPC that is talking.

Exploration is rewarded, and provided you brought a thief, it should be relatively painless. Some walls hide treasure, shortcuts, and most areas have a locked or trapped chest or two (though the chests and monsters can respawn with different permutations). Unlocking and untrapping involve a mini-game in which you must hit certain buttons in the pattern displayed below before the timer runs out. They are not generous, to try to learn the controller by touch before attempting any non-blue chest.

Spells are handled by the "X number of casts per level" for each level of spell. One must collect components and then take them to the shop to craft a stone that then is used to upgrade a spell. Since inventory space is limited, with no storage area except backpacks, one is constantly heading back to town to form whatever spells they can to empty out inventories for newer, better, items.

Party dynamics aren't as tricky as they sound, as it is fairly obvious what will and will not be the "good" or "evil" choices. There are dynamic scenes that will unfold as one ventures further into the dungeon and even as you are travelling through areas previously uncovered, so be prepared for new situations to arise and to travel back through places again every once in a while.

Story[edit]

Tale of the Forsaken Land takes place in the kingdom of Duhan, which was recently struck by a disaster known as The Flash.

The Flash not only killed thousands, but also left Duhan in a state of perpetual cold, and separated from the outside world.

On the outskirts of town lies the Labyrinth of Duhan, which the player-created protagonist must explore, whether for treasure, the truth about his own past, or for the kingdom.

Though Tale of the Forsaken Land's protagonist is customized by the player, there are several NPCs encountered along the way which help branch out the story.

Characters[edit]

Kyo Hattori

Race: Human

Class: Ninja

A young ninja stricken with the fear of death, who can either overcome his fear and stay with the group, or set out on his own if he does not agree with the protagonist's ideals.

Ricardo Dorephes

Race: Human

Class: Warrior

A warrior who questions the value of trust as an important part of a party, after having a bad experience with his last one.

Sara McDuff

Race: Human

Class: Priest

A priestess who is concerned for the welfare of the poor.

Rui

Race: Human

Class: Thief

A sorcerer-turned-thief, out to serve only her own needs, but may join the group if the price is right.

Daniel

Race: Hobbit

Class: Thief

A trickster who can't be trusted, but gives his aid from time to time, and will join if the protagonist comes to his aid at a key moment.

Michele

Race: Elf

Class: Sorcerer

A young elf who wants to make up for her people's mistakes, and help solve the mysteries of the Labyrinth.

Hina

Race: Human

Class: Samurai

Having lost both of her brothers within the Labyrinth, she seeks the help of the protagonist to find the whereabouts of her missing family.

Orphe Bright

Race: Human

Class: Warrior

A warrior seeking to find the truth about her father, who's been acting strangely. Always accompanied by a samurai named Aoba.

Aoba

Race: Human

Class: Samurai

A student of Gustav Bright, Orphe's father. Aoba seeks to protect his teacher's daughter from the dangers of the Labyrinth.

Grace

Race: Human

Class: Knight

The fiancée of Eugene Guestam, one of the game's antagonists, who she's followed into the Labyrinth to learn his true intentions.

Wolfe

Race: Human

Class: Warrior

A warrior who accompanies Grace everywhere she goes.

Kulgan the Agile

Race: Elf

Class: Ninja

One of the most loyal Queen's Guards, devoted to serving the Queen, and the leader of the guards, LeDua Almsay. Kulgan does not trust the protagonist, and they seem to have a history together.

Virgo

Race: Human

Class: Sorcerer

An evil-looking sorceress who attacks the protagonist on several occasions, though her ideals seem less wicked in nature and more misguided.

Kaza

Race: Elf

Class: Bishop

An elven survivor of The Flash who holds a grudge with the protagonist, and acts very hostile at first.

LeDua Almsay

Race: Human

Class: Bishop

The leader of the Queen's Guards, and practically the Queen's second in command, conveying all of her orders to the main character.

Queen Otelier

Race: Human

Class: N/A

The sovereign of Duhan, who according to her subjects, has changed completely since The Flash that devastated her kingdom.

Once kind and warm hearted, Otelier has begun acting cold and rarely speaks, conveying most of her commands through her Bishop, LeDua.

Reception[edit]

On release, Famitsu magazine scored the game a 32 out of 40.[1][2]

Sequel[edit]

A second 'Wizardry Alternative' game was released only in Japan by Atlus, called 'Busin 0: Wizardry Alternative Neo', with a new story, characters, and labyrinths to explore.

References[edit]

  1. ^ NEW GAMES CROSS REVIEW: BUSIN ~Wizardry Alternative~. Weekly Famitsu. No.915. Pg.59. 30 June 2006.
  2. ^ プレイステーション2 - BUSIN ~Wizardry Alternative~. Weekly Famitsu. No.915 Pt.2. Pg.66. 30 June 2006.

External links[edit]