Simon the Sorcerer

Simon the Sorcerer stands out for several reasons. For one thing, it’s a great point and click game that wasn’t made by Sierra or LucasArts, despite having the humor of Monkey Island and an engaging fantasy setting that will remind one of Kyrandia or King’s Quest. And being made by a British company (Adventuresoft), it’s also infused with some Brit humor. The plot is fairly conventional, with our hero of the tale, Simon, being drawn into a magical universe where he has to rescue the good wizard Calypso from the evil wizard Sordid.

2The game is initially skimpy as to how or even why you should accomplish this or what exactly is going on. But slow exposition and funny characters gradually unveil the world and all of its intricacies, with a fair shair of King’s Quest style inspiration from popular fairy tales and short stories (Goats Gruff, Rapunzel). As with any graphic adventure, you must lead the hero through a gauntlet of quests it order to remove all manner of obstacles. You’ll collect, combine and use items along the way, chat with characters, and wear a pointy purple hat.

As with Monkey Island, you can’t do something that will make Simon meat an untimely end, which gives you freedom to try just about everything in your journey. Puzzles are well thought-out and progress from the simple to the difficult. The inevitable backtracking is eased by providing maps that allow you to visit any location with a simple click. The gaming interface is similar to that used in Monkey Island, where you have a list of verbs available at the bottom of the screen, such as Walk To, Give, Pick Up, etc., that allow the player to choose an appropriate command. It’s simple to use despite its age.

System Requirements: 80486/33 MHz, 4 MB RAM, DOS

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