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Hi people
I was a very early adopter of Wizardry 1 on an Apple ][ and the entire family became enormously addicted. It remains an all-time favourite in my book. But the Apple ][ is long gone - how I wish I still had it!.
Now, many years later, at long last, I have a DOS version residing on the HDD of my Laptop, which is running WinXP SP3.
De-Fend Reloaded is installed and the game seems to run just fine with the six characters already present in it. But the huge problem is that I cannot successfully make and store any New Characters.
I can create a character just fine, but it has proved impossible to progress from the CREATE screen because [ESC] is not accepted by the program and I cannot then even back out of Create. I have tried every key combination I can think of, all to no effect. There is no lock-up, in that I can continue to freely adjust the bonus points, but that's all. My only other option is to ALT-TAB out of DOS and back into Windows. I can then close the Wizardry task from there. When I do, it's interesting that Windows then tells me that Wizardry is waiting for input.
I am having a huge amount of nostalgic pleasure, VERY cautiously playing with the existing party, but this dead end is driving me crazy. I LOVE this game! Does anyone have any insight please?
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Maybe you need to remap the ESC key in the emulator?

One other thing: Avoid the Wizardry Archives version; there is a nasty bug which makes attributes drop at level up far more often than they should. I have heard of young characters dying of old age because of this bug!
Have you installed the game correctly, and not in the Program Files folder?
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dtgreene: One other thing: Avoid the Wizardry Archives version; there is a nasty bug which makes attributes drop at level up far more often than they should. I have heard of young characters dying of old age because of this bug!
That's not my experience.
I played through Wiz 1-5 using the Archives version, and it was only in Wiz 3 that the stats seemed go more down than up.
Only realy bug I encountered with the characters was a character in Wiz 1 who's PIE went from 1 to 32 (or something like that).
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PetrusOctavianus: Only realy bug I encountered with the characters was a character in Wiz 1 who's PIE went from 1 to 32 (or something like that).
That's a stat underflow, and the stat actually goes down from 0 to 31. (I don't know if it affects anything else in memory.) This can't happen to VIT, as it will not decrease below 3 (the character will "die of old age" and become LOST instead).

In the ASCII console ports, stats other than VIT can't go below 3, preventing this from happening. VIT can drop to 2, causing the character to become LOST, but if you somehow restore the character (I know of methods for Wizardry 2 and Wizardry 5), the character is safe until VIT goes back up from 3.

In the Wizardry Gaiden series, at least in 3 and 4, there is no LOST status; characters who would otherwise become LOST are instead deleted. (Apparently, in WG4, you get a special item when a character turns 60.)

In computer versions (at least the Apple 2 version), it is also possible for age to overflow, but the character needs to be 32,768 weeks old for that to happen. (Negative age prevents stats from dropping at level up.) Of course, in the Apple 2 versions of Wizardry 1-3, resting doesn't age the character, making this overflow much harder to pull off (repeated class changing will eventually stop working; at age 130+, stats will no longer increase at level up). Also, unfortunately the identify glitch doesn't let you change a character's age. (Incidentally, I like the Apple 2 version because it has the identify glitch, even if the interface is somewhat cumbersome sometimes.)
By the way, if you like the early Wizardry games, I highly recommend Elminage Gothic, which plays very similarly to them (but is a lot longer).
Many thanks for the fast responses, people!
I have spent so much time thrashing around the Internet looking for any and all Wizardy info that I can’t, for the life of me, remember where I actually got my Proving Grounds from!
The game is not actually installed on my PC
Its folder, complete with contents, has just been copied to my D Drive. I am not at all sure how De-Fend Reload works. I simply downloaded and ran that and thereafter, to run Wizardry, I double click on the Wizardy Folder’s WIZDOS.COM file and it just works.
dtgreene - thank you very much for the tip on Elminage Gothic as a good substitute – I will definitely look into that, although my huge current pleasure is the sheer nostalgia of stepping back in time to 1981 and the immense pleasure that Proving Grounds gave the whole family. I’m also wallowing in making up my own spreadsheets to contain known and published data which presents back to me in an ‘improved’ version of the original game’s black background screen display. I how I wish I could read the current data directly off the HDD in real time!
Could you possibly expand on remapping ESC in the emulator? It seems I should perhaps learn more about how De-Fend Reloaded actually works, although, other than the crucial ESC problem everything seems just fine,
You need to extract the Zip file (I assume the game came zipped, if not zip it yourself) and extract it into D-Fend (just move the file over to the D-Fend front end). Id using the Archives version use the WIZ1.COM file to run Wiz 1, WIZ2.COM for Wiz 2 and so on.
Also change Video Card to CGA to get the correct (not pink) graphics.
Until you allocate enough points to certain abilities you won't be able to choose a class for your character and the esc key wont' do anything. Once you allocate enough points the escape key works because you can choose a class from the list that appears on the right side of the screen. For example, increasing strength to 11 on a human will result in the fighter class appearing as option A.