Best Friends Forever: The Lonely Wizard

The Lonely Wizard, a browser-based collaboration between Alan Hazelden and Terry Cavanagh, will take you all of thirty seconds to play. So off you go and play it now – no excuses. I’ll leave the site off the air until you get back, so you won’t miss anything.


Back? I think you’ll agree we’ve all learned an important lesson today.


  1. fuggles says:

    Um…. thanks for that?

  2. Nintyuk says:

    What the Fraak?

  3. Uglycat says:

    I learned almost anything can get exposure.

  4. equatorian says:

    That wizard should’ve put more points into his Endurance Stat.

    Also, for a hermit, someone who doesn’t lock his door is suspect. I would say that the cake he spoke of was a lie in the first place.

  5. Elltot says:

    Should I have played that with sound on?

    • equatorian says:

      Yes. There are no subtitles. Clearly they didn’t think about deaf people on this one!

    • Elltot says:

      Or people at work who get a few minutes on their lunch to browse the web…….

    • Kaira- says:

      It was fairly odd piece of something without voices on. Like criticism of cutscene-heavy games or something mumbo-jumbo rabblerabble.

    • Unaco says:

      That is a terrible oversight. PC Games should really be embracing accessibility. Making games entirely impenetrable to a large swathe of people is unforgivable.

    • Torgen says:

      I couldn’t understand most of the dialogue, even with headphones on. Of course, I’m severely hearing impaired, so that’s a common occurrence. :P

  6. CaspianRoach says:

    Game of the year.

    • Ninja Foodstuff says:

      This is a game which you’ll enjoy if you like wizards, your favourite key is the space bar, and you have generally low expectations. There is also a story and some technical issues.


    • Kollega says:

      No, no, i think the format went like that:

      The Lonely Wizard: it’s a game, and you will enjoy it if you like games, wizards, and pressing spacebar. There is also a storyline and some technical issues. 8.5/10

      Part of the joke was also about games with “3” in the title.

      And please, don’t look at me like that. I remember that joke because i really, really liked it.

    • Valvarexart says:

      Great storyline with a hidden message, perfect length; you don’t have time to get bored but leave feeling content. The animations are great and visceral.
      The controls are intuitive, anyone could do it.

      The only downsides were that the textures were kinda low-res and that the final boss was an unexpected quick-time event.

      9/10, would play the sequel

    • Ninja Foodstuff says:

      @Kollega I believe it was my joke- but yes you’ve remembered it better than I have…

      EDIT: Yes, back when I was going by “ASBO”: link to

      Good times.

    • vivlo says:

      that one meme nearly died… is seeing some endlife fading lights now

  7. Chakawi says:

    Stinking kids and their knives!

  8. Lord Custard Smingleigh says:

    That happened to me once.

  9. Unaco says:

    Relevant Link.

    And that’s the only good thing about this… I can use that link.

  10. Ice-Fyre says:

    Would have been better with co-op tbh

  11. Quasar says:

    Pun about this story

  12. RogB says:

    I’ve just been Robed of 30 seconds of my life?

  13. Skusey says:

    Never turn your back on children.

  14. NathanH says:

    This is obviously an insightful commentary on an RPG player’s interaction with NPCs. Observe that we have an old, wise, powerful, illustrious wizard, and yet the children treat him as one of two things: a lackey to be coerced and badgered until he gives them something they want, or a foe to be butchered. It’s particularly clever of the writers to cast it as children vs wizard. This highlights the difference between the PC and NPCs in an RPG. The PC is a lowly and easily-dismissed character, and the NPC is a mighty and powerful entity, and yet the PC expects the NPC to be his bitch. The point is reinforced when the children easily overcome the wizard: the powerful NPC can be defeated by the miserable PC gnat, just to satisfy the player. We see that story and lore is sacrificed to provide “gameplay”, thus undermining the entire genre’s artistic worth.

    If I have one criticism, it is that there is only one level. To take the analogy to its logical conclusion, there should be two. In the first level, we receive the cake and get to observe its statistics. In the second, we defeat the wizard. The player must then choose which outcome he prefers. This would correspond to save-scumming, and reinforce the point that NPCs are seen purely as a resource to be milked for their greatest value, rather than a representation of a person.

    • Torgen says:

      I concur.

    • grobstein says:

      Along similar lines I thought it was about the relationship between gamers (the children) and developers (the wizard).

  15. The white guar says:

    Obviously the girl has vorpal fists

  16. tehfish says:

    I’m stuck, anyone got a walkthrough?

    • the_p says:

      What you need to do is press the space bar when it says ‘press space.’
      Then at the boss, keep pressing space.
      You’ll get there.

  17. Screwie says:

    I like the extreme letterboxing of the lead image. More RPS articles should have fun with this.

    (Also it puts less wear on my middle mouse button wheel..)

  18. Kollega says:

    I totally did not get the point, if there even was one. The unexpected turn was somewhat funny, though.

  19. letrompe says:

    wait… did i murder the wizard, or did i help murder the wizard!?

    • The white guar says:

      or WERE you the wizard?
      think about that. ù_ù

    • roryok says:

      the first time I played through, I murdered the wizard. However the second time I chose the other option and befriended the squirrel. I ended up on a vengeance quest

    • The white guar says:

      the final secret time-trial dungeon was awesome! Not sure how I got married with that banshee though…

    • roryok says:

      LOL, did NOT know you could marry non-humans. This game is so deep! Have you found the crossbow yet?

    • The white guar says:

      Yeah! Using it is the only way you can go through the pudding-elemental temple without using magic. I have a barbarian-thief build, you know.

  20. Jackablade says:

    This is going to have some kind of overwrought thesis on player agency attached to it, isn’t it.

  21. McCool says:

    Interesting, but I’m not sure why.

  22. Vagrant says:

    This is why I never want kids.

  23. Josh Millard says:

    Finally, the narrative subtlety of Charlie the Unicorn properly married to Hideo Kojima’s restrained cinematographic aesthetic. I found of particular note the purposeful abandonment of traditional audio level compression, leaving the player constantly unfooted by the whipsawing volume of the dialogue; not since David Lynch has an auteur so masterfully exploited a soundtrack to involve the audience in the literal acoustic dynamics of the drama.

  24. Zaboomafoozarg says:

    Well, at least it’s better than One Chance.

    • Berzee says:


      It is as if they thought, “Let’s start with One Chance, and then delete it, and then record some children.”

      Much improved.

  25. Tei says:

    In other news, some dude has made Tetris in 140 bytes.

    GO, GAMING, GO! :D

  26. sub-program 32 says:

    I wonder if the children that were recorded knew what their characters were going to do.

    • vivlo says:

      you’re largely underestimating kid’s imagination in cruelty, i for one believe they were the ones to suggest the outcome.

  27. Skabooga says:

    This went from being nice to being terrible. That’s what I deserve for playing games at work, however short the duration.

  28. realmenhuntinpacks says:

    Actual laughter from my human body… game of the year.

  29. engion3 says:

    FUCKING BRILLIANT. I love stomping mudholes in a wizard’s ass. Will be on steam with enhanced textures in 8 months.

  30. RobF says:

    Hah, excellent.

    More comedy vignettes please!

  31. quicktooth says:

    That was obscene. Why the hell did you promote this? I’d think of something witty to say, but the game’s just ugly and pointless, I can’t think of anything. It doesn’t fail in a funny or epic way. It’s just obscene. Don’t plug something like this on the site again.

  32. vani77a says:

    Mr. Alec, can we be friends?

  33. noogai03 says:

    WHAT. THE. HELL. Sorry Terry, this was NOT one of your best games.
    The moral of that story is, never make friends.

  34. noogai03 says:

    I spent ages just tapping space before I realised you have to mash it.