Wizorb for Linux Review

very good
key review info
application features
  • An all-new block-breaking game set in a fantasy world
  • (6 more, see all...)

Wizorb is an arkanoid type of game that tries to make its way into a very crowded market by combining two genres which don’t usually mix.

We all have played Arkanoid or brick breakers type games, as they are more commonly known. Both names stem from older titles that were very successful more than 20 years ago, but which followed the same formula.

Twenty years is a long time when it comes to game development and you can imagine that a lot of games were released following the same recipe.

The player wields a simple pad and tries to destroy objects at the top of the screen by controlling the ricochet of the ball, with the pad. It sounds simple enough, or at least it used to be.

The new Arkanoid inspired games of today are all about twists and turns, which have the role to distinguish one game from another. Wizorb follows the same trend, improving an old recipe with new concepts.

Installation

The developers from Tribute Games provide packages for all the major distributions, RPMs for Red Hat based operating systems, and Deb files for Debian-based operating systems.

There is also a tar.gz file, but it contains the binaries necessary for running the game on other platforms, and it’s not the source.

We installed Wizorb in Ubuntu 12.04.1 LTS (Precise Pangolin) and everything went smoothly, until we had to start the game. Unfortunately, the deb file we used didn’t provide all the necessary dependencies.

To install the game just run the following command in a terminal near you (keep in mind that name of files may differ if the developers perform an update):

sudo dpkg wizorb-linux-1.1-1343772960-i386.deb

This will not be enough for most people. If you run the game from the terminal, Wizorb will produce the following error:

Missing method .ctor in assembly /opt/wizorb/MonoGame.Framework.Linux.dll, type System.Runtime.CompilerServices.ExtensionAttribute
Can't find custom attr constructor image: /opt/wizorb/MonoGame.Framework.Linux.dll mtoken: 0x0a0003a9


This is easily fixed by installing a couple of missing dependencies, libmono-system-core4.0-cil and libmono-system-drawing4.0-cil. This can be done either from Synaptic or from a terminal.

sudo apg-get install libmono-system-core4.0-cil
sudo apg-get install libmono-system-drawing4.0-cil


The game should start without any more errors. Remember to start your games from a terminal in order to observe any potential errors that might appear.

Story

The players will take the role of a wizard called Cyrus who is capable of transforming himself into a ball of energy. His staff becomes the pad the players control in the game.

As usual, a kingdom is in trouble. In this case, it’s the Kingdom of Gorudo, which has fallen under a curse and whose people have been turned into hideous creatures.

The only exception is the city of Tarot. Although it was almost destroyed in the attack, its people haven’t been transformed.

Tarot will act as a central hub for Cyrus. With the money he makes in his adventure, he will help rebuild the town and eventually restore the Kingdom of Gorudo to its former glory.

Gameplay

The game is divided into five different worlds, each of them with a dozen levels. Every world has a final boss fight that must be completed in order to reach the later levels.

Wizorb is a little different from other games in its genre because it also mixes a little RPG mechanics into the gameplay.

Various upgrades can be purchased from a store in Tarot and from stores hidden in the levels. Moreover, some destroyed blocks will give the players certain items, such as money, gems, lives, and mana.

Mana is a very important aspect of the game. The player can perform a few spells to help Cyrus, such as fireballs that can destroy almost anything and Alter, which can be used to modify the direction of the orb.

Graphics and Sound

Another aspect of Wizorb that makes it lovable is the oldies look it adopts. The graphics is done in 8-bit fashion, resembling games made 15 years ago.

The good thing is that even if it looks old, the gameplay and the controls are new, so Wizorb takes the best of both worlds: the atmosphere of the golden times in gaming and the evolution of modern entertainment.

Making Wizorb resemble an old game would have been a weird decision if the music and sounds used had been modern. The developers have chosen to implement a sound scheme that would match the graphics and the general atmosphere.

The Good

The variations in gameplay and the inclusion of a small RPG flavor in Wizorb, makes this title a fun and relaxing one, especially for the people who actually played games for the last 20 years.

It’s a complete experience. The developers have taken all the progress done so far in the genre into consideration and managed to keep the gameplay interesting, with nice graphics and good level variation.

The Bad

The only criticism towards Wizorb has to do with the packaging. A program’s dependencies are a crucial aspect of any Linux software. Not including everything a player needs to play the game is a sloppy move.

Conclusion

Ultimately, Wizorb is a nice experience, for kids who have just started playing games and for people who have played games most of their lives.

It’s difficult to entertain gamers of all ages, but Wizorb is proof that quality entertainment can be recognized as such by anyone, no matter the age difference.


user interface 4
features 3
ease of use 5
pricing / value 5


final rating 4
Editor's review
very good
 

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