Master of Magic

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North American box art.

Master of Magic is a fantasy turn-based strategy game. It was developed by Simtex and published by MicroProse Software for MS-DOS in September 1994. Like Civilization, the over-world exploration takes place in a square grid, and new units are built in towns which can be upgraded. However, unlike Civ, combat takes place in an isometric grid and has many units, heroes, and spells.

While I may have seen it advertised in gaming magazines, I didn't play Master of Magic when it came out. Instead, I found it reviewed on the Internet, probably Home of the Underdogs, and it looked fun so I played it.


I can easily beat the game on normal difficulty.


  • Overall: 7/10
  • Best Version: DOS

— This section contains spoilers! —


  • I like how you can totally customize your character's starting magic affiliation and spell abilities.
  • There is a very wide assortment of different units, races, and spells to keep things exciting.
  • You can recruit heroes who can cast spells, raise levels, and carry powerful artifacts.
  • The art and animation is quite nice.
  • The music, while pretty lo-fi, makes a very fine backdrop.
  • I like the variety in the wizard portraits with several races and sexes included.


  • The AI has some pretty big flaws.
    • They build ships in tiny ponds.
    • Casters will often cast spells that don't help at all, like create mud on units behind walls.
    • Casters will cast non-stacking enchantments on units that already have them.
  • Heroes and champions are cool, but even at their highest levels and when fully equipped, they're often out-classed by powerful regular units.
  • The interface is well designed, but its speed is a little clunky.


  • For some strange reason, the game lacks multiplayer!





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