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APP REVIEW: Steve Jackson's Sorcery! 2

“An epic adventure in a city of thieves, traps, and magic” 

Being new to RPG gaming, I thought it would be fitting to try something and share my experience. From first sight Sorcery! stood out from the crowd when compared with other current RPGs i'd found available on the App store. 

I’m a huge fan when it comes to literary adventure, having enjoyed other games fitting into this category. 

This game in particular originates from Steve Jackson’s well-known and loved game books from the 1980s. His book series, Sorcery!, was recently converted into an adventure RPG for iOS. The first of the series quickly became a best seller, leading to the new sequel, Sorcery! 2. 

Game Play

You are now the adventurer in ‘Kahre: Cityport of traps’. 

At the beginning of the game there is a choice between a female and male character. If you have played the previous game you can transfer former information over prior to playing the current game. Skipping straight to the second game won’t affect the gameplay negatively and you don’t need to have any knowledge or understanding of the previous title to fully enjoy this sequel. 

You are thrown head first into the deep end, you are faced with your first decision; you stumble across an old beggar in the road, what choice will you make? You have a choice to ignore him or fight him? Will you sneak past or offer your own rations of food? The choices are completely up to you!

As you progress through the game, you will be faced with more moral decisions and dilemmas similar to the above, you can either come across as compassionate and forgiving or angry and vengeful. Your decisions will affect the way in which your gameplay pans out; you have opportunities to find treasure or useful items aiding your journey, but only if decisions are made correctly. 

Similar to it's predecessor, you own a spell book full of multiple powers, which is surprisingly easy to understand. These spells can be used at points within the game to help you out of a sticky situation. But be warned they can have negative impact too.

A neat feature of this game is how it adapts to your personal preferences; the image of your traveller will change over time depending on your decisions and attitude. The player also has a spirit in which they can pray to for extra stamina, your animal spirit will also change with the approach to decision making. I personally liked the idea of having the spirit of a lion, someone courageous, witty and confident. Sadly I picked the short straw and ended up with the spirit of a whale; I wasn’t particularly amused with this. 

Death in the game doesn’t affect the gameplay; the player won’t have to start from the beginning. The game offers an easy-going feature allowing the player to rewind to a desirable place before your deathly fate, allowing you to choose your decisions wisely. Wrong decisions can also lead to less dramatic affects, for example you could end up locked in a prison or trapped in a dirty sewer. 


First observations prove the app to be extremely picturesque; the interactive book is littered with creative illustrations. However Sorcery! 2's theme doesn’t share any similarities to an ordinary book; there are no pages, instead there are torn pieces of paper which are stitched together.

As mentioned above, there are not pages in this gamebook. However, there is a static map in the background, each progression in the game acts like a token on a board game. Every decision made leads to a new twist in the story, leading to even more decisive decisions, which could dramatically affect the gameplay. 

The game is set out in an easy-to-understand manner; everything you need is available on the screen in front of you for your use at any point in the game. This includes your inventory, spell book and prayer activation. Your decisions may involve the use of your spell book or inventory depending on your specific approach to the issue faced at that point of time in the game. 


Similar to the interactive text, you are also faced with interactive sounds, which follow the current events in the background; if you are in a pub, you will hear the clatter of dishes and clinking of pints and if you are in a graveyard you will hear whispers in the wind. 

The sound is exceptional, and adds to the overall theme of the game allowing you to truly get involved in the gameplay. 

Beautiful graphics and illustrations.
Easy to use features.
Perfect for RPG beginners.
Interesting storyline.
Multiple choices, suiting the personality of the player.

Slow building game.
Repetitive gameplay.

Overall, this game is great for those who want to try an RPG, and for those who are already avid RPG players. I would recommend the iOS platform of choice to be the iPad to take full advantage of the graphics and illustrations, the game isn’t free but it is worth the £2.99 price tag. 

Graphics & sound: 5/5
Gameplay: 4/5
Overall Score: 4 ½  

Game developer: Inkle Studios
Price: £2.99
Latest Update: 25th November 2013-11-26 
Available Platforms: iPhone, iPad and iPod touch

Laura Ash / @lauraanneash

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