Wizard101 Review

This logo is directly from Wizard101.com.
This logo is directly from Wizard101.com.

MMORPG Newbie

A Review Written by MMORPG Newbie

(Please note: This is my first time review of a game.  I have never reviewed online games or games in general before.  Please enjoy.)

Let me begin by sharing my credentials. I admit it, I'm a newbie when it comes to online games or specifically MMORPG. Over the last 10 years or so, I've briefly dabbled in games like Runescape and Ultima Online. I rarely know all of the terminology or get in real deep with the community. I stay connected through a family member who has played LoTR, WoW, and many others that I can't keep up with. It was that family member who introduced me to Wizard 101 nearly a month ago claiming to love this simple game even though she is a hardcore MMOer. Since then, my stepchildren and I have been hooked.

Signing into Wizard101

Sign up, then download! :D
Sign up, then download! :D
Install and log in. :D
Install and log in. :D

What is Wizard101?

Wizard101 is a MMORPG originally designed for the young audience. It has evolved enough to make it family-friendly, thus all ages can enjoy this in a fun and family atmosphere. Much of the game is academia based, meaning that it is focused on the 'school' of Wizard City. Wikia gives this description: "Wizard101 is an online, Wizard school adventure with collectible card magic, wizard duels, and far off worlds! The game allows players to create a student Wizard in an attempt to save Wizard City and explore many different worlds." Evil is creeping into Wizard City due to Malistaire Drake who was the teacher of the Death School. Your wizard student must fight it.

The game is free to sign up and download. Some areas in the game must have access through subscription or purchasing crowns. When you sign up on the website, you're taken through a quiz to determine what kind of wizard you are and then you have to fill in the necessary information. After you have signed in, there is the green button that says 'Play', this will take you to the download website. With a high speed internet, it takes five to ten minutes to download and install it to your computer. Then you log into the game itself from your desktop or wherever you have saved the game to and from there you get to create your own student wizard. Your own account creates up to 6 characters. You can also have a family account where each gets to create as much characters of their own.

I ended up with this one for my Rowan character.
I ended up with this one for my Rowan character.
Meet Olivia. :D This is the Commons area you go to right after you log into the game.  Then you hit play or make a new character.
Meet Olivia. :D This is the Commons area you go to right after you log into the game. Then you hit play or make a new character.

Creating a Character

I had so much fun just now creating a new character for the purpose of this review.  My first character is Olivia Trollgarden, a Pyromancer, my fire Wizard.  She is level 12.  My newest one, for this review, is Rowan Lotuspants, a novice conjurer of the Myth School.  My oldest stepson, age 9, keeps making new characters because it is really so much fun.  He also quickly speeds through levels.  I really enjoy how they also make it difficult the higher up you go.  He is enjoying the challenge once he gets past the easy part.

Okay, creating a character.  The Headmaster brings you to his tower and from there, he asks you questions like he is really looking at you and you have to tell him what you look like and what gender you are.  His excuse is that his eyesight is failing him, so he needs the basic data.  This simple humor is not lost on my stepchildren.

After that is a brief tutorial.  Your character is immediately sucked into a battle where the Headmaster then teaches you how it is done.  The explanations are clear.  The best part about this was discovering that I could read and hear at the same time what was being said.  Not only is this a good auditory training for myself being hearing impaired, this is a good reading aid material for my stepchildren.  I've been in games where there was only text for dialogues, which was fine.  Then, I have been in games where there was only voice for dialogues, which bothered me to no end because I could not get all of what was being said.  Having both is a blessing in itself.

This is my Rowan going onto her first Quest! Notice the yellow arrow and the other signs.
This is my Rowan going onto her first Quest! Notice the yellow arrow and the other signs.
Rowan's first quests.
Rowan's first quests.
Rowan's cards in a turn-based battle against the dark fairy.
Rowan's cards in a turn-based battle against the dark fairy.
That card in action.
That card in action.

The Wizardly Adventure [Dun Dun Dunn]

There is a reason this is playable for *all ages*. It is immediately noticeable after the tutorial and you're ready to hit the road (er.. paths? trails?).

Number one, the quests themselves. In one of the screenshots shown here, you will see a yellow arrow with numbers inside it. After you have received and accepted a quest, it is automatically put into your quest page inside your spellbook. You can also change which quest you want to get to by hitting that spellbook, finding the quest icon, and clicking on a specific quest. This means the yellow arrow will guide you to that quest. The numbers are how far it takes to get you there. That icon in the book also shows you what rewards this quest will bring you, as well as the dialogue review from the person you received the quest from.

This is useful for various reasons. First, finding the quest is easy for the children and for adults. It also teaches mapping, following directions, reading, and counting. My personal favorite is the treasure hunt type quests.  For crafting, you have to find and harvest stuff like mist wood and cat tails.  Prospector Zeke is my favorite, he gives you quests like finding these little dwarf men hidden all over Wizard City.

Second, the chat. There are various types of chats found here. First you will notice the auto chat which is where you simply click on various responses or initiators. This is the quickest way to chat, even if the answers are pre-made. As you level up and add friends (some accounts don't allow children to add friends without parental consent), you will notice that the free chat is filtered. Even if you disable the filter, you can't type certain things that are not in the dictionary or that are dangerous to the minors. Because of this alone, children under 13 won't be allowed to tell their age or location. I absolutely adore this safety feature for my stepchildren.

However, it can be frustrating for us adults. Be as that may, I think of it this way: There are so many online games that children can't play safely because of vulgar language or mature content. This one is so well thought-out and in depth - AND it's for all of us! The great thing about the creators of this game is that they actually added 18+ chat feature that minors can't view. The sneaky thing about that is - you must subscribe. At least it's cheap!

That brings me to subscription and crowns. Oh yes. Money, of course. First, let me say this. The whole graphics on this game is incredible. The motions, the directions, the features, the creatures - everything is done right down to the detail. For such a low budget online game for family, it's amazing. You can detect influences from other books and movies in this game, as well. Harry Potter is an obvious one. There are also the Three Little Pigs (as ninjas), some Avatar, Wizard of Oz (the Dorothy quest), and plenty of other influences. The fun part is in detecting them. They incorporate so much humor and intelligence with the storylines.

For all of that, they do need some monetary support in keeping the online game going. Most of the Spiral (Wizard universe in which Wizard City is part of) is *free*. However, there are also quite a few places, features, and items that you can choose to access - by purchasing crowns or subscription. I personally have only purchased crowns, which go from $5 to $35, depending on how many crowns you want. Crowns are the fake money in the game that purchases access and items ($10 gets you about 2500 crowns and I needed 750 crowns to access a city). Once you have purchased an access into the city, you have that permanently on your account.

Okay, Back to the Battles. For a young MMOer learning the ropes, the battles are easy to play. It gets complex the higher up the levels you get, but the neat part about that is the kids are figuring it out pretty fast! The games are turn-based and depends on the deck of cards you have. This means you are taking turns throwing out the hits. You will start wanting the really hardcore cards and building upon it with more skilled cards, which means more quests that rewards you with the coins and XP level to get you those cards.

The cards are so much fun by themselves. Once you draw the cards in the battle and you pick one for your enemy, you get to watch the character or creature in your card come to life and batter the heck out of your enemy! You also begin to learn some patience by picking a card that makes your next spell even more powerful or a card that gives you more protection for the next turn.

After All Is Said and Done..

I recommend this game for anyone who enjoys good storylines, turn-based games, and beautiful graphics. Parents, this one is a good game to download for the children. The download and installation itself is simple, plus it really does not take a lot of space on your computer. The chat filters and safety features in place are strict and yet can be revised and monitored by the parents themselves.

The great part about having this is that the whole family can play it together. You can create a group during the game play to be able to automatically appear wherever the other is and join they battle they are in. The group feature also allows you to talk to others while they are all in different cities or doing different quests.

That said, I fully recommend this. I am not being paid by wizard101 or KingIsle Entertainment to write a review.  I am a (step)parent of the children who play this game, as well as being a player of this game myself.  We love this game!

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So, What Do You Say? 15 comments

Actionelly 7 years ago

Awesome review!! :)


Shubhadevi profile image

Shubhadevi 7 years ago

Good review!!


Cheeky Girl profile image

Cheeky Girl 6 years ago from UK and Nerujenia

It sounds and looks interesting!


Faybe Bay profile image

Faybe Bay 6 years ago from Florida

I Love Wizard 101. I also Love your review. I was ready to go after Malistaire when I had to give up my membership, but I had already helped others defeat him. I wanted to do a review of the game, but yours far surpasses any I could have done. Well done. :)


iceshard1233 profile image

iceshard1233 6 years ago

cool i started playing a long time ago, but i got a lot of stuff done too. by the way cool video


darkstar9645 profile image

darkstar9645 6 years ago

Great hub.Helped me a ton!


rockboy2010 6 years ago

i love wizard101, i am level 36 i have no more sub but even with out it there are great things to do in wizard101, they just came out with a pet pavilion where you get to train your pets and level them up. and (when your pets get to level epic) they even lend you a helping hand in battle. wizard101 is a great game and this game is so awesome that i would choose this game rather then be rich for life. WIZARD101!!!!!!!! YOU ROCK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Sunny Robinson profile image

Sunny Robinson 6 years ago from Tennessee Author

Wow, I've not been on here in so long!

You guys, thank you for your replies. So encouraging! I'm thinking about reviewing other games that my children are playing and have sucked me into playing.

Faybe, I've quit playing Wizard101 due to funds and my stepchildren wanting to play other things instead for the time being. They are not total PC game players right now. This is making me want to get back into it!


wow 6 years ago

that game is so gay...


prasetio30 profile image

prasetio30 6 years ago from malang-indonesia

Good information. It looks beautiful game. Thanks for share with us.


Game Obsessed profile image

Game Obsessed 4 years ago from Australia

Great Review, I am a Wizard101 player myself.


Bubu 4 years ago

Very nice post! Have one question for you all: What does a Free to play game mean to you?


Scott102215 4 years ago

"Cool game, Worst customer service I have ever seen from any company. No consideration for the fact they are a kid gaming site, way to strict on banning young players for anything they feel like. Find another game there are plenty and you wont have to deal with this companies poor customer service and lack or organization skill to handle their younger gamers. The only reason they are still in business is the quality of the game but at some point soon even that will not be enough as the subscribers have to deal with the organization itself. Beware of the customer service side of things, complaints and billing, do some research prior to purchase.


Wow 3 years ago

Very, very good game. :) @wow This game is not gay at all, it is perfect for all players ages, young or old..this game is fun. I play this game with my 3 kids, they enjoy it VERY much, and so do I!! However in Marleybone it gets a bit complicated towards players of the age ten and below. Takes more strategy, I really do enjoy this more than World of Warcraft, more complex, but still manageable. Probably the best game our family has played and ever will play.


brittpinkie profile image

brittpinkie 2 years ago from Sydney, Australia

I have literally never heard of this game until today! I totally want to play it now, haha.

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