Best RPG of 2016, Sorcery! to add a New Game Plus mode tomorrow

We’ve just got the hot scoop that our RPG of the year, Sorcery! [official site], is to receive a free update tomorrow, that adds in a whole new super-hard New Game Plus mode, along with a sprinkling of other extras.

This new mode is for those who’ve already finished all four parts of the stunning conversion of the early ’80s Steve Jackson Fighting Fantasy books, and want to return to the world afresh, with new challenges, higher difficulty, and a bunch of new bits and bobs to make it a slightly varied experience.

And this is a series that really invites a second play, what with the many paths you’ll have left unexplored, and the many different choices (horrible choices) you wished you could have made the first time – I started a second play recently, being as big a bastard as I could, but was then distracted. (A bee.) This is just the prompt I need to get back on with that.

As well as much tougher combat (“merciless” difficulty), there will be some new, more powerful spell objects to discover early on in the game, and even a new area (secret, they say) to explore. And they hint further with this:

The new content will be accessible from tomorrow by putting in the save code for a completed Part 4 into Part 1, thus unlocking the new game mode and its accompanying extras, and maybe inviting the game to eat itself – I’m not sure.

This is to be the last major update for the series, as Inkle move on to fresh pastures, a new game entirely based on their own ideas, which they describe as “bigger, stranger and more beautiful than anything we’ve attempted before.” Which is a rather pleasing prospect after how hugely we’ve been impressed by this and their first project, 80 Days.

23 Comments

  1. Premium User Badge

    Grizzly says:

    JIG!

  2. Bent Wooden Spoon says:

    I really, really enjoyed this series.

    Up until a particular point very close to the start of the third one where you’re subjected to one of the cheapest throwbacks to 80s/90s gaming possible – an unavoidable incident where one of your hard fought items, potentially one you’ve been carrying around since previous installments, is randomly (and seemingly irretrievably) stolen from you.

    After multiple restarts trying, without success, to avoid it, I was so disappointed I just stopped playing. I couldn’t give less of a shit how close it is to the source material (and it does read like something straight out of a Fighting Fantasy book), it’s objectively awful game design.

    You may well be able to get it back later, I don’t know – I’ll probably pick the series up again if someone informs me that you can, but my God did it make me (slightly) unreasonably (very) angry.

    • daneel says:

      Exactly the same here. I haven’t given up *yet*, but I’m not very inclined to play on.

      If this was the book, I’d just ignore that and carry on with it in my inventory. They should add that option, along with the rewind.

      When I looked online, it said that it was a “random” encounter. No way it was. No matter what route I take, or how much I backtrack, it always happens. Just give me the option to kill the little scrote and take my stuff back. Or one path through that lets me avoid losing items.

      • Premium User Badge

        Grizzly says:

        It is random: The person in qeustion wanders the lower left of the map in the ancient world, but where he is when you pass trough there is decided at random: I mostly appear to encounter him in the old world where he is just an echo…

        The characters in this game do wander around according to a certain logic, so it’s perfectly possible that you keep encountering him in the same spot in your game because that’s how the algorithm works. That said, it’s perfectly okay to lose items! You don’t need that item to progress, you can find another instance of that item later on. The game itself supports many outcomes, and part of the fun for me is to roll with that.

    • Fredward says:

      The magical items aren’t unique, you can almost certainly pick up another one of whatever he steals further down the line.

      • Premium User Badge

        basilisk says:

        Yep, I can confirm this. The magical items lose much of their rarity in parts 3 and 4, and whatever was stolen from you is probably not very difficult to replace.

    • Reefpirate says:

      I’m pretty sure I can empathize with your loss, but calling it ‘objectively awful design’ is just wrong. There’s a whole host of great design examples out there to reference: EVE Online, Dark Souls, pretty much any one of the classical roguelikes, etc.

  3. icarussc says:

    I enjoyed Sorcery 1, *really* loved Sorcery 2, but got stuck on Sorcery 3 and couldn’t find a way forward. After wandering around the map three times, I gave up. I’d really like to play 4, but not without finishing 3. Conundrums!

    • Premium User Badge

      Grizzly says:

      Where are you stuck?

      • icarussc says:

        I found a tip on how to kill the Moon Serpent (or the Air one, maybe?) but I couldn’t find him anywhere. And I didn’t want to proceed without killing them, since that was the whole point, wasn’t it? But Richard has me thinking maybe I was wrong …

        • Premium User Badge

          Grizzly says:

          Yeah, if you can’t find the serpents it might just be best to call it a day and go for the ending. Sorcery 4 will not be insurmountable. Just attempt crossing the lake at the end of the map.

        • Richard Cobbett says:

          At least when I played, the Moon Serpent was on the cliffs near the start – the ones locking off the second ‘column’ of the map.

    • Richard Cobbett says:

      If it helps, your only key objective in Sorcery 3 is to get to the bottom right of the map and across the lake. Your route is a little restricted and you can get some killer random encounters, but it’s pretty easy to get there (as seen in link to rockpapershotgun.com

  4. Premium User Badge

    platypusfool says:

    This thread is interesting – I also loved the series until the third part pushed me away. My reasoning was that I’d carefully arranged things so as to have sight of several villages / buildings in the top left portion of the map, only to find when exploring that I wasn’t given the option to stop at them.

    It felt wrong to me that my character wouldn’t stop at points of interest I could clearly see on the map so I put it down and didn’t pick it back up.

    Anyone know if this was the game being weird, or if there’s genuinely no chance to stop at those dwellings, no matter how you align the tower?

  5. Drakedude says:

    You should have mentioned the fucking grind in sorcery 2 and 4 – 3 also requires quite a bit of repetitive map crawling if you play a certain way.

    Time travel that takes the teeth out of all your choices is a terrible idea. TERRIBLE!

  6. Premium User Badge

    Neurotic says:

    I lack only Part 4, which I’m hoping will be part of the sale tomorrow.

  7. caff says:

    Sorcery 1 was excellent. I’m kind of stuck on 2 currently. Great choice for RPG of 2016 though, particularly as the lovely devs released their “ink” engine open source which I’m really looking forward to experimenting with.

  8. Xander77 says:

    Update is out, seems fairly full of content. Though to be honest, I kinda thought the final update would fix the various errors:
    link to steamcommunity.com
    which… it did not.

    • joningold says:

      FWIW, we’re better at fixing errors reported via the cog menu email system, which we can ticket. Long posts of typos disappear without a trace too easily (as this one did).

      • Xander77 says:

        “the cog menu email system”
        ?
        There’s a “cog” icon in the upper right corner of the game screen. If there’s an email system to be found after clicking upon said icon, I have not been able to find it.

        • joningold says:

          Oh, the PC version doesn’t have that feature. TOO MANY PLATFORMS. I suppose “please report bugs from a mobile version” isn’t helpful feedback so in that case, thanks for re-linking to your post! (and I will email it to myself.)

          • Xander77 says:

            Thanks. I do hope to see these fixed. Though I probably won’t bother compiling a similar list for 3 and 4, no offense.