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Bill Loguidice's picture

Wizard's Crown Chronicles (01) - The Setup Part II

(See The premise at the end of this posting for details on this ongoing feature)
With most of the setup behind us, with the two prior features, (00) and the unnumbered preparation, it's time to provide the last of the build-up before the actual feature starts to unfold. I have scanned the complete box and complete manual. Go to the set, here. First the box is presented (all sides), then the rather long manual, then the rest of the photos as the chronicles continue. You can view this as a slideshow or click on the individual photos to get high resolution imaging options. Enjoy!

Bill Loguidice's picture

Wizard's Crown Chronicles (00) - The Setup

Wizard's Crown: Apple II version (emulation)Wizard's Crown: Apple II version (emulation)(See The premise at the end of this posting for details on this ongoing feature)

Having literally dozens of boxed classic CRPGs (Computer Role Playing Games) and related software to choose from in my collection for the first Armchair Arcade Chronicle, I finally decided to go for what was generally known as one of the hardest of hardcore full Computer Role Playing Games (CRPGs), Wizard's Crown, published by SSI in 1987. Even though the Atari ST is probably the best from a visual standpoint (and adds a debatable mouse-driven interface), the C-64 version is the version I happen to have complete in the box. I've never played Wizard's Crown, but it's always been on my list.

In order to set the scene for what is to come, first some background on Wizard's Crown...

Matt Barton's picture

What's the best commercial CRPG series?

Matt Barton's picture

Interview with David Whatley of Simutronics' Gemstone

Gemstone: Entertaining and captivating players for 20 years with no sign of slowing down!Gemstone: Entertaining and captivating players for 20 years with no sign of slowing down!I was recently given the chance to sit back with David Whatley, one of the many folks responsible for the famous GemStone online role-playing game, which got its start way back in 1988 on GEnie, one of the big commercial networks that thrived before the rise of the web. GemStone is one of the best known of the text-based online role-playing games (or, MUDs), and is still going strong today. David turned out to be extremely friendly and articulate, and I daresay you'll enjoy reading the great responses he had to my questions. If you ever wanted to learn more about the world of commercial text-based online role-playing, he's the man to talk to.

Matt Barton's picture

Interview with Jaakko Tapani Peltonen of NetHack: Falcon's Eye

Falcon's Eye: NetHack + Graphics = Awesome!Falcon's Eye: NetHack + Graphics = Awesome!I recently had the pleasure of talking to Jaakko, one of the developers of the ongoing free software project NetHack: Falcon's Eye, an awesome, graphical remake of the classic Rogue-style game NetHack. The game is available for Windows, Linux, and DOS platforms. The best part is--it's FREE. Below are some questions that Jaakko was kind enough to answer about Falcon's Eye. It's in-depth and makes for some very good reading, especially for those interested in classic CRPGs. Enjoy!

Matt Barton's picture

Fun with PLATO

Moria: Note the 3D, first-person view of the dungeon.Moria: Note the 3D, first-person view of the dungeon.No doubt, one of the great "unsung" heroes of the computer gaming industry is PLATO, a "computer assisted instruction system" originating in the 1960s that was so far ahead of its time that it gives you goosebumps to read about it. Until a few days ago, all I'd been able to do was see second or even third-hand accounts of what gaming was like on this platform, but then I learned about, an organization that simulates the PLATO system on the web. I applied for an account, received one a few days later, and have been having great fun checking out some truly classic CRPGs! Check it out (with screenshots!) below.

Matt Barton's picture

The Story of The Wizard's Castle

Exidy SorcererExidy SorcererOne of the great things about writing a book is that you get to hear so many interesting stories. One of the best I've heard so far involves a very, very early game for the Exidy Sorcerer named The Wizard's Castle. Although programmed by Joe Power a few years earlier (in the mid 1970s), the game wasn't officially released until 1980, when it was printed as source code in Recreational Computing magazine. It's been ported to several other platforms (by Power and others). Eventually it was played by Derell L., who prefers to go by his nickname "Derelict." Derelict converted the game for Windows and added sprite-based graphics (you can download it here). Anyway, I had the chance to talk to both Joe and Derelict about their games, and have decided to print them here for your enjoyment! Note that I haven't edited these interviews--I didn't have to!

Matt Barton's picture

CRPG Book in the Works

UPDATE: Dungeons and Desktops is now available from Amazon and many other booksellers! Buy your copy today!

Good news! The publisher A K Peters has accepted my proposal for my upcoming book about the Computer Role Playing Game. We're still in talks about the title (though leaning towards "Dungeons and Desktops" with Mat's permission), but if anyone has any good ideas, let me know. At any rate, I should be able to expand the coverage considerably and go into much more detail (we're tentatively capping it at 200 pages).

Matt Barton's picture

The History of CRPGs Part III: The Platinum and Modern Ages

Well, it was a LOT of work, but I've finally gotten my third and final installment in my massive CRPG history series posted to GamaSutra. This installment covers all the classics from the 90s, including unforgettable games like Fallout, PlaneScape:Torment, Baldur's Gate, Arcanum, Diablo, Morrowind...The list goes on and on. I tried to be more comprehensive than last time, but I finally decided to omit coverage of MUDs and MMORPGs, as I explain in the article. I might also remind readers that I'm not covering console RPGs, or CRPGs that originated on consoles and were ported over later (i.e., the Final Fantasy games). Otherwise, I hope you enjoy the article! Please let me know if you find it interesting, entertaining, and/or helpful. I had a great time playing all these games and reviewing them for your pleasure--the best part is, I discovered lots of gems that I hadn't played or even heard of before. I hope you have the same experience after reading my article.

yakumo9275's picture

Rose Tinted Memories of CRPG's

After Matt's couple of CRPG articles, I’ve sat down and thought through rose tinted memories on my favourite CRPG titles, time for some armchair commentary on my favourite golden age CRPG's.

Magic Candle, Wasteland, Questron II, Curse of the Azure Bonds + Pool of Radiance, Eye of the Beholder, Bards Tale II, Ultima III, Demons Winter.

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