Wizardry 8

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Wizardry 8 is the eighth, and so-far the last game in the mainline Wizardry series. It is also the third and the last game in the Cosmic Forge Trilogy.

Plot

The ultimate aim of the game is to collect three artifacts and to place each on its pedestal in the final zone. This allows ascension to the Cosmic Circle, where the player becomes a god. There are four main paths to proceed through the game: Allying with either the T'Rang or Umpani, allying with both, or else being enemies with both. In addition, players can also choose to gain friendship with the Ratkin or the Trynnie, and players can choose whether or not to ally with the Rapax, Ratkin, Razuka or Mook, though none of these choices affect the ending of the game.

Beginnings

As with the first two installments of the Cosmic Forge trilogy of Wizardry games, Wizardry 8 has multiple beginnings that continue from the previous games' multiple endings. There are five beginnings in all.

In the final area of Wizardry VII: Crusaders of the Dark Savant, the Isle of Crypts, the party has a choice to tell their enigmatic partner, Vi Domina, whether or not they have a way to leave the planet Guardia. They have the option of telling the truth and informing her that they found a spaceship, or lying and saying that they have no way to leave. If the party follows the path of truth, the Girl and Globe endings are open to them. If they lie, the Umpani, T'Rang and Globe endings are open to them.

Main Story

Whatever the circumstances of the party's entrance into the world of Dominus, the goal of finding the three artifacts needed to ascend to godhood remains unchanged. They must find the Astral Dominae, the key to life and which is held by the Dark Savant, the Destinae Dominus, the key to knowledge and which was stolen by the thief Marten, and the Chaos Moliri, the key to change and which is held by the Mook.

The party ends up procuring each of these artifacts through different means: they acquire the Astral Dominae when the Ratkin, who came to Dominus on the heels of the Umpani and the T'Rang on a stolen T'Rang ship, rob the device from the Savant and sell it to the party. The Chaos Moliri arrives in their hands once they've allied with the Umpani and/or the T'Rang, who provide the party with a letter that allows them access to the Mook compound, and then steal the device from the Mook (alternatively, they may murder either the Umpani or T'Rang leader, steal the alliance letter from their corpse, and then enter into an alliance with the Mook under false pretenses). Finally, they follow the footsteps of the thief Marten to the Sea Caves, and his ghost entrusts them with the safety of the Destinae Dominus.

Once all three artifacts are in their possession, the party goes to Ascension Peak to begin the path to godhood, only to find the path blocked off by the Rapax, a warlike race of demonic beings. After travelling to their castle and becoming Rapax Templars, which involves sleeping with (and impregnating) their demon goddess, the way to the Peak is finally open. The party climbs to the very top of Ascension Peak, places the three objects in their receptacles, and enters the Cosmic Circle on the heels of the Savant. It is not required for the party to join with the Rapax, as they may set a portal on Ascension Peak before the Rapax block the path, and can teleport in later as they wish.

In the Cosmic Circle, the Dark Savant has already arrived and is speaking with Aletheides, the cyborg that the party either joins or follows to planet Guardia in previous game, depending on their choices in Wizardry VI: Bane of the Cosmic Forge. He demands to know where the Cosmic Lords are, but Aletheides simply says that they are gone. The Dark Savant kills him in anger, and the party approaches. When they do, they find that the Cosmic Forge back in the Circle where it should be (its theft is detailed in Wizardry VI).

The Dark Savant reveals that he is, in fact, Phoonzang, the enigmatic god figure from both Wizardry VII and 8, and a former Cosmic Lord. The other Cosmic Lords cast him down for trying to share the knowledge of the universe with mortals (e.g., humans, T'Rang, elves), and he was forced to become part machine to continue to live past a normal man's lifespan. He then offers the party the chance to join him, and become Cosmic Lords along with him.

Endings

Similar to previous games, there are three different endings depending on player choice

The Savant

The party joins the Dark Savant. They are then forced to kill Bela and, if she's present, Vi Domina. Afterward, the party and the Savant use the Cosmic Forge to pen the destiny of the universe. This destiny is a malevolent one, and the narrator explains that the party, along with the Savant, gains great satisfaction out of dividing and setting numerous alien races against one another in violent, unending combat. The game ends with the narrator explaining just how in tune with the Dark Savant's evil the party really is. This is the only ending to have animated cutscene and voiced narration instead of just having simple text and picture like the other two below.

The Pen

The party decides to use the Cosmic Forge to write the Dark Savant out of existence, and bring Phoonzang back. They are not quick enough, however, and are forced to kill the Savant. Luckily, the universe is ultimately saved, and the party ascends to look after its destiny as its gods, performing benevolent works such as forging an everlasting peace between the Umpani and the T'Rang (provided that both races survived the events of the game), and giving the Rapax qualities like kindness and empathy, turning them into a much more civilized race and thus quelling their desire for world domination.

The Book

The party decides to rip out the page in the book of destiny where Phoonzang became the Savant, but in the process, change or destroy all the pages that come after it. As the magic of the Cosmic Forge takes some time to occur, they are forced to fight the Savant to the death. Fortunately, tearing the page out causes the Savant to revert to Phoonzang, alive and well, once more. Unfortunately, a lot of other events were willed out of existence by having so many pages torn from the book, and Phoonzang explains that the party has destroyed the Universe. The party ascends at this point, and with Phoonzang's help, they begin the arduous task of restoring the universe's history in order to set the timeline right once again.

Gameplay

In Wizardry 8 players create a party of six adventurers at the start of the game. Each race and class has a balance of strengths and weaknesses. The various races and classes are designed to be balanced so that a wide variety of parties can be playable. Characters may change their class as they advance, allowing a variety of combinations.

The game itself is played from a first person perspective. Movement is fluid, whereas in previous Wizardry games it was grid-based. For the first time in the series, players can see enemies approaching instead of having them pop up randomly. Combat is turn-based, although a continuous-phase mode can be toggled. Monsters are scaled to the party level; higher level parties will face different sets of monsters than a lower level party in the same area. The scaling is limited to allow variation in difficulty. The game uses different statistics than the previous games, necessitating conversions from the upper limit of 18 to the new upper limit of 100.

For players seeking a more difficult challenge, Sir-Tech brought back an option to play using rules from the early titles named Iron Man Mode. In this permanent death mode, players are not allowed to save the game; instead the game is automatically saved when the player quits.

There are many secret areas, including Retro Dungeon, which refers to the look of the dungeons in the first game. Instead of vast open views, players are greeted with a solid, traditional grid-based dungeon. Spinners, traps and teleporters are used.

Characters

Recruitable Characters

  • Drazic
  • Glumph
  • Madras
  • Myles
  • RFS-81
  • Rodan
  • Saxx
  • Sexus
  • Sparkle
  • Tantris
  • Vi Domina

Non-playable Characters

  • Aletheides

Development

Wizardry 8 was published nine years after the completion of the previous title in 1992, and five years after the completion of Wizardry Gold in 1996. Linda Currie is credited as producer of the game.

During the production of Wizardry 8, its publisher, Sir-Tech, went bankrupt. The final production process was rushed, and finally Sir-Tech was forced to sell advertising space within the game itself in order to make budget. This advertising appears when exiting the game, but not in the European version.

In spite of a final save prior to the final battle, Sir-Tech has announced that they have no plans to make a sequel. The Cosmic Forge trilogy is complete, and Sir-Tech went out of business.

Trivia

  • The German game magazine PC Action had Wizardry 8 included on DVD in issue 11/2004.
  • So far, this is the only mainline game that never received console ports or official remakes.

Gallery

Videos

References

External links

Characters
Recruitable Drazic - Glumph - Madras - Myles - RFS-81 - Rodan Lewarx - Saxx - Sexus - Sparkle - Tantris - Vi Domina
Non-playable Aletheides - Dark Savant - Marten
Terminology
Races Human - Elf - Dwarf - Gnome - Hobbit - Faerie - Lizardman - Dracon - Rawulf - Felpurr - Mook - T'Rang - Umpani - Ratkin - Helazoid - Rapax - Razurka - Trynnie - Android
Classes Fighter - Mage - Priest - Thief - Ranger - Bard - Psionic - Alchemist - Valkyrie - Bishop - Lord - Samurai - Monk - Ninja - Gadgeteer
Locations
Archives
Media Soundtrack
Compilation Wizardry Legacy: BCF, CDS & 8
Others Spells - Monsters - Weapons - Equipments - Items
Llylgamyn Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord (remake) - The Knight of Diamonds - Legacy of Llylgamyn - The Return of Werdna - Heart of the Maelstrom
Cosmic Forge Bane of the Cosmic Forge - Crusaders of the Dark Savant (Gold / PSX) - Wizardry 8
Gaiden Suffering of the Queen - Curse of the Ancient Emperor - Scripture of the Dark - Throb of the Demon's Heart - Dimguil - Prisoners of the Battles - The Absence of Misericordia - The Five Ordeals (Traveler's Property / Children of the King Selene / The Devoid of Apotheosis / The Pickled Man of Galvan / The Wheels of Flame / The Price of Deception)
Starfish Wizardry Empire - The Staff of Resurrection - Princess of the Ancient - II (Plus) Legacy of the Princess - Ancestry of the Emperor - Asterisk: The Scarlet Seal
BUSIN Tale of the Forsaken Land - Gotz' Trap Removal - BUSIN 0: Wizardry Alternative NEO
XTH Academy of Frontier - Unlimited Students
Renaissance The Wedge of Life - Labyrinth of Lost Souls (The Red Shadow of the Sister) - Online Mobile - Legacy of Oblivion - Prisoners of the Lost City - Online - Wizardry 0 - The Magical Tower of War - Schema - Wizrogue: Labyrinth of Wizardry
Other games Nemesis: The Wizardry Adventure - Chronicle - Summoner - Wizlite: Everybody loved RPGs
Mobile/Cellphone games Monthly Wizardry - Wizardry Chapter 1 - DoCoMo Wizardry - Wizardry Traditional - Wizardry Original - Variants Daphne
Cancelled Stones of Arnhem - Wizardry Gaiden VB - Strange Tale of the Rising Sun - Wandering Dark Lord
Compilations The Wizardry Trilogy: Scenarios I, II & III - I-II - The New Generation - Trilogy 2 - III-IV - VI & VII Complete - The Ultimate Wizardry Archives - Llylgamyn Saga - New Age of Llylgamyn - I-II-III: Story of Llylgamyn - Twin Pack - Perfect Pack - Legacy: BCF, CDS & 8
Tabletop games Wizardry RPG - Wizball
Novels Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord - The Story of Alavik and Margda - Knight of Diamonds - Legacy of Llylgamyn - Heart of the Maelstrom - Ash & Youth Side by Side - The Wind. Has it reached the Dragon? - The Return of Werdna - Suffering of the Queen (Futabasha) - Suffering of the Queen Iris - King of the Sands - Llylgamyn War - Prelude/Expansion - The League of the Crimson Crescent - Blade & Bastard
Media Quest for Hrathnir - Wizardry (anime) - Gaiden (manga) - Apolon Game Music Box Memorial Sound of Wizardry - ZEO (manga) - Record of Wicked Sorcerer: Ash & Youth - Blade & Bastard (manga)
Other related Ultima - The Bard's Tale - Deathlord - Centauri Alliance - Elminage - Generation XTH - Class of Heroes - Wizardry Clone - Wizardry references in popular culture
Collaborations Demon Tribe - Dungeon Dive: Aim for the Deepest Level - Final Fantasy Agito - Rise of Mana - Samurai Schema - Darkest Dungeon II