Legacy of the Wizard (Nintendo NES, 1989)
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|The game chronicles the story of the Drasle family (an abbreviation for "Dragon Slayer"; localized as "Worzen family" in the USA) and their attempt to destroy an ancient dragon named Keela that is magically entrapped in a painting within an underground labyrinth. To accomplish this goal, they must find the "Dragon Slayer", a magical sword that is protected by four hidden crowns. The player must use the unique abilities of each member of the family to regain possession of the crowns and destroy the evil Keela. Like many games of its era, the story of Legacy of the Wizard is explained almost entirely in the game's instruction manual. The game itself contains very little text, and does little to add to or even to explain the story of the game.
The Drasle family consists of six members of three generations, plus the family pet, which resembles a small dinosaur. The player takes control of the members of the Drasles and their pet, sending them one at a time into the vast underground cavern filled with traps, puzzles and monsters, in search of the four crowns, while periodically returning to the family household on the surface to change characters and to obtain a password. Each member of the family, which consists of the father, mother, son, daughter, and the pet, has different strengths and weaknesses to contribute to this goal. Some characters have seemingly powerful strengths, but each is offset by proportionate limitations. For example, the father has the strongest attack power, but cannot jump as high as the rest of the family. The mother of the family has relatively weak attributes, but is the only one who can use specific magical items required to find one of the crowns. By discovering and utilizing each character's strengths, the player travels through the extensive dungeon, eventually fighting four bosses to gain the crowns.
The game's vast labyrinth has five major sections, four of which contain a boss who guards one of the crowns, and the fifth which contains the final boss. Each section has noticeably different characteristics and different background music, and was designed with one particular playable character in mind. The crowns cannot be acquired without the player utilizing the family members' specific skills to get through the sections of the dungeon. Therefore, each playable character must be used at some point in order to complete the game. For example, one section may be blocked with bricks that can only be destroyed by the mattock, so the player must use the character who can use the mattock to get through such an area. After all four crowns have been acquired, the family's young boy can use the magic of the crowns to find the Dragon Slayer, and then use the magical sword to slay the evil Keela.
1up.com called it a "hidden gem" for the NES.
|Game||Legacy of the Wizard|
|Platform||Nintendo Entertainment System|
|Genre||Action/Adventure, Role Playing Game|
|Number of Players||1|
|Game Series||Dragon Slayer Series|
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