Three classic games in the Wizardry series have turned up on Steam for a really low price. Wizardry VI: Bane of the Cosmic Forge and Wizardry VII: Crusaders of the Dark Savant are both up for grabs at the low for of $4.99 bundled together, while Wizardry 8 goes for $9.99.
These three games make up the second trilogy of the overarching Wizardry series, one of the earliest video game iterations of the RPG genre. The first trilogy was released in the early 1980s alongside Ultima. Wizardry proved more successful with its more simplistic dungeon crawling approach, and its influence paved the way for future landmark series like Might and Magic before crossing oceans to inspire Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest.
Japan still makes games in the vein of Wizardy as seen in Atlus’ Etrian Odyssey and Shin Megami Tensei.
Wizardry VI, VII and VIII have aged much more gracefully that the originals, but don’t let that fool you. These are still some of the hardest games in existence, and they will break you time and time again before you understand. My experience with the games dates way back to 1992, and my seven-year-old brain couldn’t get out of the first dungeon of Crusaders of the Dark Savant.
Now that I think of it, Wizardry VII was the first RPG I ever played, beating Final Fantasy III on the SNES to the punch before I even realized what an RPG was. Maybe it’s time to see if I have evolved enough to make it beyond the first room.