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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful:Enchanting, March 17, 2010
by tggdan3 (Michigan)To start out, as much as infocom may have said this is not Zork IV, it is basically Zork IV. (You can visit this place in Zork III, and the game includes the Zork Adventurer as an NPC).
The game has a story, albeit a basic one- you are a weakling novice mage, one so minor the big bad mage Krill won't even notice you mucking about his castle. So go kill him.
The game includes a magic system which works nicely, and a very annoying hunger/thirst puzzle.
Some of the puzzles in this game seem to have multiple solutions. However, you will find that solving them the "wrong" way, will leave you without the tools to solve later puzzles, as I found out when I played it. You do run into some issues with the randomness aspect (that Zork Adventurer keeps running around before I can cast my spells on him!), and there are some times you need to use out of world knowledge to solve puzzles. (The last battle requires 3 specific spells, and you don't know you need to memorize them until you get there, and then it's too late).
The writing is wonderful, and you do get a sense of dread as time goes on, pushing you to complete the game faster. There are plenty of ways to screw with the spellcasting system, such as breaking everything, then repaing it with the repair spell, or summoning all kinds of people like the game designers or Krill himself. There is also a very clever (and nasty) puzzle involving a magic map and an imprisoned beast.
I played this game and loved it, and I am a big fan of the fantasy/Zorkian genre. If you are as well, you will love this game. If not, then this game will not be for you.
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