Text-based video games were all the rage during the 70s, 80s, and early 90s, partly due to low processing power on people’s PCs. Despite processing power increasing dramatically, there are still people out there creating these games, as there’s something quite charming about them. One such game, Wizard’s Choice, is available on your Nokia Lumia.
There are probably a lot of you out there who have never played a text-based game before, and instead rely on visual graphics to stimulate your senses. Text-based games ignite the brain in different ways and force your mind to conjure up your own images using nothing but good old-fashioned imagination – much like reading a book. This provides a different gaming-experience to each and every person who plays it.
“An arrow whistles past your head. You look back and see at least four sets of glowing eyes.”
“What do you do?”
Wizard’s Choice is full to the brim of such questions, and it’s up to you to answer correctly or the nasties in the game will soon ‘end’ you and you’ll need to start all over again.
As the title suggests, you are a Wizard and you’re on a quest to rid the world of evil and collect treasure along the way. I’m sure there’s a fair maiden that needs rescuing thrown in for good measure, too.
The story begins in a forest as night begins to fall. Woods can be a frightening place, especially with orcs tailing your every move – it’s the stench and glowing eyes that give them away. How best to deal with such malodorous beasts? Stay and fight, run and hide, or leg it? All are viable options.
However, whatever decision you make will have consequences for the rest of the game. If you make the wrong decision, you may feel the sharp, burning head of an enemy arrow, losing some of your precious health points.
If you opt to use your magic to escape a situation, your manna points will be reduced, and a wizard with no manna is almost as useless as a warrior without a sword.
Use your skills wisely, and sensibly.
Throughout your journey are moments to earn morale for your fighting party and even the opportunity to earn some money. Orc ears make a tidy profit on the black-market, apparently.
The storyline is descriptive and often funny. Both of which is perfect material for allowing your own mind to create the scene. Having said that, there is the odd scattering of illustrations to help you visualise this mysterious world.
As for the gameplay, it doesn’t get much easier. Once you’ve read the story on each page, your only task is to select what to do next and press the relevant button.
Don’t worry about saving your progress, the game autosaves at every step on the way. When you load up the game in future, you’ll be taken to the exact same point you left off.
Wizard’s Choice is gaming from the past, delivered beautifully to open-minded gamers and into the modern world of smartphones.
Do you remember text-based gaming the first time around? Or are you trying this for the first time? Let us know, below.