Wizardry: Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord Reviews

Wizardry: Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord is ranked in the 60th percentile of games scored on OpenCritic.
Metro GameCentral
GameCentral
Top Critic
7 / 10
May 23, 2024

One of the oldest and most influential video games of all-time remains surprisingly entertaining thanks to this loving and option-filled remake.

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8 / 10
May 22, 2024

Digital Eclipse’s new take on Wizardry: Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord is an impressive and ambitious attempt to bring historical flavor and contemporary approachability and appeal into one neat, modern package. I may prefer the sprites and chiptunes of the Game Boy Wizardry remakes, but the effort and passion for video game history is just as powerful here as it is in other Digital Eclipse works. I would have loved some more museum-style content these folks are known for, but the laser focus on the game here is a fascinating new approach.

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7 / 10.0
May 24, 2024

A competent remake of a 1981 dungeon crawler which most probably remained way too much faithful to the original game.

Review in Italian | Read full review

3.5 / 5.0
May 22, 2024

The remake of Wizardry: Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord respects its roots by offering a nostalgic and punishing gameplay experience. While it could benefit from enhanced character customization and a more forgiving approach to new players, it remains a solid choice for those who appreciate old-school RPGs and are looking for a game that challenges their strategic thinking and patience. For RPG veterans, Wizardry delivers a satisfying blend of complexity and nostalgia, demanding meticulous planning and resilience. For newcomers, however, the steep learning curve and high difficulty level might be daunting, suggesting that starting with the pre-made characters and taking time to gradually understand the mechanics might provide a more enjoyable introduction.

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90 / 100
May 26, 2024

Digital Eclipse has made this journey as earnest and effortless as possible. For those who want to forge a deeper bond with the medium (you know who you are), Wizardry 2.0's worth your time and money.

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7.3 / 10.0
Jun 3, 2024

Wizardry Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord is yet another masterstroke from Digital Eclipse, a developer capable of breathing new life into classics with incredible talent. Apart from its fundamental historical value, however, Wizardry is a game that is now rather limited in its mechanics and cadence, classifying itself as an artefact suitable mainly for digital archaeologists eager to rediscover it. It would have been great if it had been accompanied by the wealth of historical notions to which Digital Eclipse has now accustomed us.

Review in Italian | Read full review

3.5 / 5.0
May 26, 2024

Wizardry Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlock is a fun walk down memory lane which successfully brings the original game in its entirety with updated graphics and slightly tweaked gameplay. Given that, this is not a remake of Wizardry but rather a remaster. Definitely for the gamer who is seeking that old school atmosphere without the old school graphics.

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SECTOR.sk
Branislav Koh�t
Top Critic
6.5 / 10.0
May 23, 2024

The modern incarnation of Wizardry shows the strengths of the forefather of dungeon crawler, but also the ailments it suffered from. It refers in a sympathetic way to the original game (old-school settings, preview of the classic look in the inset window). It is a pleasant reminder and memory, but with less convincing gameplay.

Review in Slovak | Read full review

8 / 10.0
May 22, 2024

You can even swap to the dungeon layouts from the later console ports. This is an extremely faithful update of an important game. And if you're willing to give it the opportunity, you find it is just as addictive today as it was forty years ago.

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May 30, 2024

A lot of love went in to bring Wizardry: Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord to the modern age and it shows; great stuff!

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7.5 / 10.0
May 31, 2024

While there are certainly better, more robust and more inventive dungeon crawlers, Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord is a classic that deserves recognition and, in this new form, can be appreciated both on modern systems and in modern terms. If you’ve any love for the spice of yesteryear and the rawness of digital fantasy, then this early incarnation of Wizardry merits your attention and investment. Now to see if The Knight of Diamonds will be in our future, or if this jaunt back in Wizardry’s history is a one and done journey.

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Unscored
Jun 12, 2024

Regardless of your tastes in gaming, this is a re-release that is most definitely worth everyone’s time, if not only to come to appreciate where gaming is now and where it spawned from and how current something like this can be when cared for in the way that Wizardry has been here.

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8.5 / 10.0
Jun 11, 2024

Wizardry: Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord is an absolute love letter to the original game that creates a perfect balance of old-school brutality and modern quality of life adjustments.

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8.1 / 10.0
May 29, 2024
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Evan Norris
Top Critic
7 / 10.0
May 29, 2024

It retains the spirit of the groundbreaking 1981 Apple II game and makes it more approachable, less exhausting, and far more glamorous than ever before. Sometimes it hews too closely to the original, resulting in tedious, taxing gameplay, but in general it delivers a dungeon-crawler worthy of the Wizardry name.

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May 22, 2024

The remake of Wizardry: Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord is great. It revives one of the most historically important games of all time with dignity. These old bones may creak at times, but the foundation of all of your favorite RPGs can be found here. There’s a good amount of exploration and party-building to keep you busy. The no-holds-barred combat will be sure to test your mettle, as well. There is room for experimentation, and learning how to be efficient creates plenty of replay value. Be forewarned: even with tons of quality-of-life toggles, this game is unforgiving. The autosave feature and balancing that lean towards ‘brutal’ ensures that the age-old adventure still has teeth. There are even settings that allow players to experience the game balancing as it was in its original format and its slightly altered console ports from back in the day. I don’t recommend coming to Wizardry 1 for a deep storyline. Its premise is nothing more than mildly interesting. I’m also not a fan of the DnD style balancing, I much prefer how later RPGs handle their calculations.

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