1995 Teeny Weeny Games
Designed by Gregg Barnett, David Johnston; Paul Kidd
Reviewed 1995 October 1

Rating +3 Linearity narrow, segmented
Reasonability silly Connectivity moderate
Difficulty difficult Relevance strong
Interface 3rd paned simple Real-time minor

You are Rincewind, the Discworld's most incompetent wizard. A dragon is terrorising Ank-Morpork, Discworld's largest city. The wizards must defeat the dragon to maintain their status as people not to be messed with. You are chosen for the task, being the least ranking and most expendable wizard.

At its heart, Discworld is a great game, but it has several annoying flaws. The most outstanding feature is its humour. It is frequently hilarious, and is worth buying for this aspect alone. The voices, music, and artwork are all superbly done, and well support the theme and humour.

Discworld's problems are in the details. To start with, the program has many minor bugs, mostly graphic and sound glitches. The interface has several gotchas. Some important things are indistinguishable from the variation in background art, and are small enough that a casual sweep of the mouse will miss them. Rincewind or the luggage occasionally block your view of and access to items. Crossing the city is interesting the first few times, but is later slow and tedious: there's no mechanism to zip past well worn scenery.

Several of the solutions are completely arbitrary. The required course of action is not determinable through reason (either logic or allusion). I.e., the rationale for the solution is sufficiently twisted that an equivalently twisted rationale could be created to allow any action to lead to any consequence. (On the other hand: I've only read two Discworld books, and perhaps these solutions are found in other books in the series.) The net result is that you must frequently resort to exhaustively trying everything, which gets tedious.

In summary, Discworld is a bittersweet experience. The sweet side prevails, and I look forward to a sequel by the same folks, but I hope they would clean things up.

Related reviews:

  • Discworld 2
  • Discworld Noir
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