Game Review: Sorcery

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It’s been a long time coming for Sorcery to make its way to the PlayStation 3 after first being revealed in a surprise move at E3 2010. Nearly two years later, Sorcery finally makes its way to the PS3 but, is it still the move killer app that everyone thought it would be when it was revealed?

Sorcery was revealed at E3 2010 and oddly enough was not present at E3 2011 which prompted many people, myself included to wonder if the game had been cancelled. Fortunately for everyone who anticipated this title, it has finally made its debut, and it’s every bit as good as you’d hope it would be.

Being a PlayStation Move game, you obviously have to calibrate the controller to the correct settings for it to function properly. Luckily enough, I didn’t have very many problems calibrating the controller, it only took two times for me to find the correct setting for it. After I got it to the correct setting, the tracking was by far the best in any of the Move games that I’ve played.

The Move controller acts as your wand and you move it around in different directions to perform different types of spells and different ways of casting them. You can aim in any direction on the screen, no matter if the enemy is above you, below you, or at the same level. You can also perform curved shots which can go around corners for enemies hiding behind cover which is extremely useful and you can even perform arc shots that can find their way over surfaces that you can’t cast spells through.

The firewall, just one of many ways to defeat foes in Sorcery.

The game’s story was interesting enough and it’s not something that comes out right away either. As you play, you start to figure out different pieces of the story and find out the origins of the different characters that you see in the game. You play as a young man named, Finn who is an apprentice under a sorcerer named, Dash. Finn has grown impatient with the very careful teaching of Dash and one day accidentally hits Dash’s brewing cauldron with some magic which causes it to explode requiring Finn to find new ingredients. Finn’s cat sidekick tells him the only place to find the ingredients is in the Land of the Dead. Long story short, after Finn acquires the ingredients he is met by an enemy which he defeats and is presented with an orb revealing Erline’s true form. Erline gets petrified and tells Finn they must hurry back to the village and Dash but, upon their return the village is under attack by weird creatures known as Bogeys. Erline explains that her mother has made a deal with the Nightmare and that they must escape and hide from her. It’s a very good story for a game that, to me, didn’t need to rely on one and I found myself immersed in what was going on with Finn and Erline.

I can’t remember another duo quite like Erline and Finn. In the beginning you felt as though maybe they weren’t even going to spend the whole game together as they made little jokes about each other and such, as Sorcery progressed however, you saw how connected the two really were. You got to hear personal things every now and then and see exactly what makes each tick. More than that though, it really gives you a feel that the journey that they’re on together has brought them closer than ever before and I can really liken their relationship to Ratchet and Clank which is high praise. I can really see this being a new series and Finn and Erline being a couple of new franchise characters in the PlayStation family.

Erline against the world!

The gameplay is where this game really shines though. When you start out, you have only the Arcane Bolt which is a fun electrically charged spell to use on enemies. You will more spells via the Spell Nexus’ that you’ll find in different parts of Sorcery. You’ll collect most of the major elements with these Nexus’ and they make the game so enjoyable. Not only do you get these spells to cast on their own but, you get to combine spells to cause havoc for your foes. You can create a barrier of fire and then shoot your Arcane bolts through it to create fireballs, create a whirlwind of fire and shoot bolts through it that will shoot out all over the map, and you can even freeze enemies in place and break them into a thousand pieces. The possibilities are amazing and a really nice touch. Sometimes you’ll even need to light torches or freeze waterfalls to get to your destination which was a great gameplay element that seemed to go unnoticed.

If the main spells aren’t enough to get you into this game than the Alchemy system will. There are countless potion combinations that can give you that added advantage in battle by raising health, improving damage, or even giving more gold from chests. There’s a travelling merchant that you can buy items for potions from or you can find them in treasure chests throughout the game. The coolest part is actually mixing the potion as every movement is exactly how you would do it in reality. You can pour, mix, grind and shake all your ingredients, then stir your potion before finally shaking it and pouring it at your mouth to drink it. The detail is amazing.

You can mend different things in Sorcery to create a path to where you need to go.

The visuals weren’t stunning but, they were perfectly fine to me considering how immersed in the world I was. The enemies have many different forms, the environments range from dark and dreary to bright and vibrant, and the main characters are fairly basic looking. The textures did look a little dry at first but, once you progress through the game, you see the amount of detail that was put in to every single spot the game takes place in. I found barely any bugs in the game except Erline’s tail which can be seen skipping around sometimes in dialogue.

Sorcery can be completed in around 8-10 hours on the two higher difficulty levels which is a shame because it’s a game that is very hard to put down. There isn’t very much replay value involved as determined players can attain the Platinum trophy in one playthrough and there are no modes other than story mode as well as no multiplayer options which could be an amazing experience if there is a sequel and they do decide to do multiplayer. There’d be nothing more fun than 4 player online co-op with each person casting different spells and combining them. We can only hope for that at a later time.

The dreaded Ice Troll which is always a nuisance.

Even with these slight problems, Sorcery is without a doubt to me, the best PlayStation Move title available and should definitely be experienced if you own a PlayStation Move controller. The story is incredibly good and easily beats some stories of higher budget games on the market today. Sorcery is the result of a lot of polish and was well worth the two year delay. I can only hope this is the start of a new PlayStation franchise because I can’t wait to see what adventures await Erline and Finn. If you haven’t yet, go buy Sorcery now. It’s well worth the price.

A copy of this title was provided to Find Your Inner Geek for review purposes. Sorcery is available now at retailers and on the PlayStation Network Store for an MSRP of $39.99

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