Darkstar’s Wizard’s Apprentice Review
Thelostone released Wizard’s Apprentice, an Avatar Dungeon Crawling RPG, for the Xbox Live Indie Game marketplace. This RPG reminds me a little of Pokemon and your Avatar is taking Ash’s place, except you have a few more tricks up your sleeve than him. No you won’t be throwing some capture item out at the enemy monsters in your attempt to add them to your monster roster. It’s far simpler than that.
So what is Wizard’s Apprentice about? Well you’re a wizard’s apprentice and your final test is this dungeon. Now that you know why you’re are there, you can forget all about it because you will never hear anything about that again. Not even in the credits. So if you are looking for a story driven RPG this isn’t it. Wizard’s Apprentice is a top down dungeon crawl that when you touch a visible monster, you start a battle sequence.
The battle sequence will drop you down to a slightly angled side view battle of you, your monster versus the monster you came into contact with. Yes you touched it, the monsters do not chase you or move at all. So you can pick and chose most fights unless a monster is blocking your path.
Now that I’ve given you a bit of the game lets talk about how it’s played. When you start the game you are asked what type of wizard you are; Arcane Elite (Eventually Grants you the ability to cast two spells a turn), Beastmaster (Stat boosts to your monsters), or Summoner (You can summon a monster to make an attack on the enemy). The summoners summon only makes one attack per call. It comes down attacks and is gone again, much like any standard spell would act. The beastmaster just grants stat bonuses no actual spells are ever involved. The Arcane Elite is focused on magic stat bonuses and finally the ability two dual cast in a turn.
Once you have selected what you are, a random monster will be given to you and you must chose it’s class; ninja, monk, or darkcaster. Ninja’s get poison attacks, monks get healing abilities, and darkcasters gain some of the spells you get. This is in addition to their feral abilities which are based purely on the type of monster. Monsters Jobs/Classes max at level 5 but their regular level keeps going up. Both you and your three set monsters gain experience from fights. More experience is awarded if you release the monster after you beat it, and less is received if you capture it. You can’t capture bosses. There appears to be 20 different monsters you can catch and 40 monsters can be captured total. So you may need to release one to make room for others if you keep capturing versus releasing. In a battle if one of your monsters is taken down it jumps to the next of the 3 chosen for battling. You only lose if all of your three possible chosen monsters are defeated.
After every fight your monsters heal back up. So there is no need for items of that nature. The items available are equipable gems that up you and your monsters stats, as well as few you can use during battle. You can upgrade your wand and buy gems from the shop. I found buying gems unnecessary since it appears that some of the most powerful gems can be dropped from low dungeon levels. The dungeon is 14 floors in total. In the end I found that even the last two bosses of lvl 75 and lvl 100 were simple to beat as a dualcaster with the right gems equipped and I was only level 30. You don’t need to spend time grinding in this RPG. Any dungeon can be replayed as many times as you like, even after beating the game.
The biggest glaring downside to this game is that there is only one save location. If you want to play as a dualcaster in one game and a beastmaster in another you will have to delete your previous game. I thought this was a really poorly thought out system. When you start the game it will immediately jump into your saved game and to get back to the menu you have to exit out of your saved game. Another poorly thought out design. With enemies that don’t surprise you no difficulty settings I found the game really easy.
I give this game a 3 out of 5. It could have been so much more should have been at least a little bit more but just falls short. Still a good game overall, but I would give it a trial run before you buy.
Final Score: 3/5