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Sorcerer

by Steve Meretzky

Episode 2 of The Enchanter series
Fantasy/Zorkian
1984

(based on 54 ratings)
3 reviews

About the Story

Sorcerer, the second of a spellbinding fantasy series in the tradition of Zork, takes you on a magical tour through the darker side of Zorkian enchantment. Your journey begins with a cryptic diary - the last trace of the now-vanished Belboz the Necromancer, grand and powerful leader of the Guild of Enchanters. It is feared that Belboz is in thrall to evil sorcery. If so, the very existence of the Circle of Enchanters could be forfeit. To rescue the kingdom and locate your mentor in the treacherous mists of time, you must gain the power and cunning of a true Sorcerer.

Difficulty: Advanced


Game Details

Language: English (en)
Current Version: Unknown
License: Commercial
Development System: ZIL
Forgiveness Rating: Cruel
IFIDs:  ZCODE-18-860904
ZCODE-15-851108
ZCODE-13-851021
ZCODE-6-840508
ZCODE-4-840131
ZCODE-67-000000
TUID: lidg5nx9ig0bwk55

Sequel to Enchanter, by Marc Blank, Dave Lebling

Followed by sequel Spellbreaker, by Dave Lebling
Referenced in Scroll Thief, by Daniel M. Stelzer

Editorial Reviews

Adventure Classic Gaming

On the high side, the puzzles in Sorcerer are truly entertaining and clever. They also play fair. The solutions require insight and do not require brute force thought (except for mapping). The location descriptions are very well written. They are brief yet evocative, and they do not become monotonous. On the low side, the long dead-ends can make the gameplay unforgiving. [...] There is little in the way of developing plot. A lot of the background story is contained in material that comes with the game but not in the game itself. Some of the missing material is for copy protection purposes, but I like to have seen most of it appear within the game as well.
-- David Tanguay
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SPAG
The Enchanter Trilogy
Two scenes bear particular mention: the glass maze [...] shows that not all mazes have to be annoying and boring. There is another puzzle [...] which is worth playing the entire game for, as I found it one of the most imaginative and challenging IF puzzles ever. As a whole, the game is rather easy, but I enjoyed it immensely.
-- Molley the Mage
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SPAG
[T]here is much in Sorcerer to enjoy
For fans of Enchanter, Sorcerer is worth playing; it continues the inventive use of magic to solve puzzles, and there is a genuine sense of accomplishment at the end. Though, particularly in the writing, it doesn't quite equal the standard set by Enchanter, it is well worth the time of any fantasy-game enthusiast.
-- Duncan Stevens
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>INVENTORY - Paul O'Brian writes about interactive fiction
That was Sorcerer — overall kind of a frustrating mess, as Jimi Hendrix once sang, but an enjoyable story for all that, and home to one of the more magical puzzles Infocom ever produced.
See the full review

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Member Reviews

5 star:
(21)
4 star:
(31)
3 star:
(5)
2 star:
(1)
1 star:
(0)
Average Rating:
Number of Reviews: 3
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful:
Enchanter levelled up , May 31, 2021
by dvs

My friend and I have been using this Pandemic period to play the Enchanter trilogy over Discord. We just finished Sorcerer and we have previously finished Planetfall/Stationfall.

This game was one of our favorites Infocom games we've played. It has a definite story arc, from the tense intro to the final "chapter". Because there were so many red herrings (puzzles that don't need to be solved and items that are never needed) we didn't even know we were in the endgame until we looked at our score and realized we were close.

There were several unique puzzles we hadn't seen before (both areas which had maze-like mechanics). Unlike in Enchanter, we never had to look at any Invisiclue hints to solve them. The setting succeeded in giving us the feeling of constant danger, particularly when we ended up in the super creepy Chamber of Living Death.

A quibble we had were some areas that felt like randomized deaths that were more annoying than fun. (I was ready to give up on getting anything useful from (Spoiler - click to show)the slot machine when we kept getting killed over and over randomly before my partner's perseverance finally paid off.) Otherwise this is a classic worth playing.


2 of 2 people found the following review helpful:
Enchanter's nightmarish older brother, February 3, 2016
by MathBrush
Related reviews: Infocom

Sorcerer is the "middle child" of the Enchanter trilogy, and like many middle installments, it tries to go beyond the old game into new territory while developing some aspects.

This game is still focused on scrolls, but it adds potions and many more Zorkian pick-up-and-carry-around items. Many items are items from MIT Zork which have been repurposed.

The writing is, in fact, nightmarish. There is a nightmare early in the game, and don't try sleeping in the first area! You later visit some particularly horrible places, where there are countless ways to die. The game is filled with subtly creepy locations, like (Spoiler - click to show)an underground carnival. And losing is particularly unpleasant.

This game has many red herrings, and one notorious unwinnable state (you must obtain a certain item in the first 25 turns of the game. The game doesn't tell you that).

The game is famous for (Spoiler - click to show)its glass maze, and for its time-travel puzzle. Unfortunately, I had heard about both before, and so I wasn't as impressed by them.

I got up to 205 points before using a walkthrough. I played this game on iOS's Lost Treasures of Infocom.


2 of 3 people found the following review helpful:
Very Nice!, March 17, 2010
by tggdan3 (Michigan)

Sorcerer takes place a few years after Enchanter, and with the same PC. Now you live in the guild, a full enchanter, but your mentor has gone missing, which you find out after you sleep in one day.

As old IF classics go, you will definately feel some Abandonitus as you explore the ruins of an old fort and part of the GUE. However, you now get all kinds of nifty spells to mess around with, and potions too!

This game has a few of the best puzzles I've ever seen, and some very ANNOYING ones that require feelies to solve (such as a chest in the basement with a random code, the code requires the feelies to solve).

The hunger puzzle is there at first, and there is a unique variant on the inventory management puzzle (which reminds me of a part in Zork I). There are some scenes where you might randomly die just by entering the room (which is a pain, though you can avoid this- if you know about it- by casting the right spells ahead of time). The outer-world-knowledge "issue" is bypassed by providing you with a resurrection spell- if you cast it before hand, you can be brought back from death (so that out of world knowledge might still be player knowledge!). This also provides a useful solution to one of the harder puzzles. There is also a beautiful variant on the hunger puzzle- the breathing puzzle, very well implemented (and very big pain! The first time I played this game it was online, and I couldn't save! Imagine playing the whole game over!).

I would put this as the best of the Enchanter Trilogy, and better than the Zork trilogy also. (The game even has 2 possible "success" endings, though one is obviously better than the other.) A great play!


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Maybe the whole game isn't about time travel, but I really got into some games when they had a time travel puzzle in it- especially when it can be difficult to implement such a puzzle.

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Polls

The following polls include votes for Sorcerer:

Birds in IF by Wendymoon
What games can you think of with birds in them? What's the bird? Is it important to the game?

Games Where the Title Is You by AKheon
Games with a title that is the same as the main character.

Multi-Part Games by Bloodsong
I was wondering just how many games out there, either completely text based, or text-adventure hybrids, are out there that involve a story line over the course of several games. I know for sure of the Sorcerer trilogy from Infocom...any...

See all polls with votes for this game




This is version 8 of this page, edited by Paul O'Brian on 10 May 2022 at 2:21am. - View Update History - Edit This Page - Add a News Item