This one is going to be unusual for our website, because normally it revolves around games in a digital form. Today we are going to talk about a ‘gamebook’. And, as might have been expected, we did not just pick one at random, but the gamebook itself: The Warlock of Firetop Mountain. Yet I have to tone down a bit: Actually it is already our second gamebook on the site. The other one has been hidden for about 14 years in the comics section.
10 years… an eternity in the computer games world. Even if the two Lords of Midnight games had been very popular at their time, who still remembered them by the mid-90s? Which is probably also what Domark thought, just printing "Lords of Midnight" on the box, omitting the "III" shown in-game. Since 1995, another 23 years have passed. So more than double of those previous ten. So in today's retrospect, 1984 and 1995 have moved much closer together, haven't they?
In the history of CRPGs, the Wizardry series should give every old school gamer a chill of ecstasy. The series began already in the early 80s and ended only in 2001 with Wizardry 8: Destination Dominus, but under licence, it has multiple further spin-offs. like Wizardry Online, primarily in Japan until the year 2012. An icon of game design called D. W. Bradley created the huge worlds of Wizardry V: Heart of the Maelstorm (1988), Wizardry VI: Bane of the Cosmic Forge (1990) and finally Wizardry VII: Crusaders of the Dark Savant (1992) for the company Sir-Tech before jumping ship and founding his own software company. D. W. Bradley even surpassed himself and created the (in my view) only legitimate successor to Wizardry 7, namely Wizards and Warriors, already one year before Wizardry 8.