Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
Developer: The Workshop
Release Date: May 22, 2012
Today on deck, we have the PlayStation Move exclusive game, Sorcery. The game has seen several updates since its initial announcement at E3 2010, but has it served the title well or has the game aged beyond recognition in this current day? Read below to find out!
In Sorcery, you play as Finn, a young teenage sorcerer’s apprentice. Finn has the potential to become one of the best sorcerers ever as he will master the arcane arts as you progress through the game. The overview of the story is that the Nightmare queen has broken an ancient pact and now seeks her daughter Erline to cast the world into darkness. It will be up to Finn and his mastery of the magical elements to save everyone. Finn may be young, but like most prodigies, his desire to become a master leads him into something bigger than he could have ever imagined. At the beginning of the game Erline baits Finn into traveling into the land of the dead. This was a trick to scare the young apprentice but he soon realizes that he has a knack for spell casting.
The game will have you traveling through very robust and awe inspiring adventure. The two characters Finn and Erline are some of the most innocent characters that you will start with in the beginning of the game. There are some fun and unique moments that you will encounter in the dialogue in the game. What really interested me was story, which at its core is essentially a buildup story between two young characters that mature into something greater than they could ever imagine. It is a great ride from start to finish and one that will take you through many amazing environments. There are some similarities in the story-telling element to past PS3 exclusives that most gamers will be remember.
Boss battles are that not hard at all. Battles will require you to use your head and environment to take down the enemy at hand. A simply new magic spell will work wonders against that enemy, which should be a no-brainer to veterans of games like this.
Sorcery’s greatest feature is also its greatest detriment. If you have not figured it out yet, that would be the gameplay, more specifically the use of the move. Although the game allows you to do certain things that titles before it have not done before, it still has not reached its full potential. The great benefits of the game are the fact you can use the move like a magic wand, mix up spells to create interesting but basic combos and researching potions that yield upgrades for your character.
The combo system or lack of one in the game is very noticeable. As soon as you are able to get a wand and have the ability to use spells, you will have the option to combine skills. You can mix a whirlwind with fire and then shoot it with your arcane bolts to send them repelling throughout the area attacking the enemies in the vicinity. You can mix and match elements as a way to take down better, faster, and stronger enemies. There really is not much to it after that. That is the combo system in its basic nature. The one issue I had with the game is that you are given earth magic to use and it almost becomes irrelevant throughout the course of the game. I still haven’t figured out a purpose for that spell and for the most part it is not needed as you can just swing the move with a couple of spells and pass through the entire game.
The upgrade system in this game is actually a very basic system. You will meet a wandering merchant who reminds you of the merchant in Resident Evil 4. (Not quite as ominous, but still funny) In his shop, you can sell treasures that you will find in the game for gold to buy ingredients that will yield permanent effects for your stats. Every time you get a new ingredient you are able to experiment/research to see the potential potion that you will make and the increase that will ensue to your stats. Although you will have everything readily available, you will still need an empty bottle to mix the potion that you will want to use.
The one problem I had with the gameplay is that at times it felt very linear and didn’t allow for much exploration. After you reach certain areas, the door or places behind you will be blocked off and you cannot return to those areas to see the items or other things that you may have missed.
When we first saw Sorcery at E3 2010, it was very interesting and basic looking in its approach. The game looked like a first year PlayStation 3 game that was experimenting with a few new ideas. This was taken back to the drawing board as we saw great graphical upgrades that seemed to bring the game into a modern day light. The characters and scale of the game is great. The best part of Sorcery where it excelled for me personally was in the new environments and areas that you will enter as you progress through the story. Everything that you see is reminiscent of the fantasy that the game is trying to portray. It really puts you in the fantasy world and makes you feel as if you are a true magician trying to cast spells.
Music in any game is a very interesting aspect. It can set the tone, mood, and overall atmosphere to any title if done right. That is why I was really appreciative of the music in Sorcery. The game features some of the best fantasy scores that gamers will enjoy when on their spell casting adventure. I really found myself at times enjoying the game and the amount of fantasy type music that was added to give the world life. I don’t want to be cliché but I didn’t want this story to end. I wish it were truly a never ending story up until the very end.
The PlayStation Move and the Navigation controller are the way to play this game and frankly, it is the only way you will be allowed to play this game. The game requires you to use solely the move and/or Dualshock 3 or Navigation Controller. I honestly cannot picture myself playing this game without the two. The use of both controllers allows you to get the real feel for casting magic. The move’s sphere at the top will change colors with you want to use a potion or cast some arcane magic although; it does not change colors as often as you would assume. The game allows you to flick the Move Controller in different directions such as high, low, and middle level. What also helps you out is the fact that you can curve bolts to attack enemies that are hiding behind cover. This is also the game’s biggest problem as you can imagine. The game uses the wand so much that there is not much a melee combat system incorporating the move. Yes, there are some melee attacks that can be found in the game through the shield nexus (Spell Nexuses, are the ways you acquire new skills and spells) that you find early on, but it will not be used as much as you would like it to be. It feels as though the central idea that started out early in development never really developed along with the game and its graphics.
Lastly, if you thought Sorcery was a title that you were going to love you would be right. The story telling in this adventure leads for an enjoyable experience that you will not be able to turn off. Even though the game has its shortcomings, I loved every minute of this game and I know you will to. From start to finish Sorcery is the best first party move title the PS3 and PS Move have to offer.
I give Sorcery an eight out of ten.