Tower of the Sorcerer is a DOS Puzzle Game disguised as an RPG, made by Watanabe Nao in 1996. The game was originally known for having graphics and frame rate(60 FPS) that's ahead of its time. The game received a port for Windows 95 in 1998.
The story follows a Save the Princess format where the hero, armed with the magic sword and shield, scales through a tower to defeat the Big Bad and save the princess. However, the Hero got ambushed in the earlier floors and had his gear stripped away. Sent to a jail cell, the Hero met a thief who helped him escape the cell. Now armed with inferior equipment, the Hero must calculate the best move to advance or he will face an unmovable obstacle.
The game's official site, from which it can be downloaded, is here.
This game features the following tropes:
- Bait-and-Switch Boss: The boss of the undead zone is just a ring of big bats! Those things were dangerous ten floors ago, but by this point, you can easily take them down in one hit each. Until you approach them, that is, and a cutscene shows them coalescing into an extremely powerful Vampire that will almost certainly end you if you haven't collected every power-up the zone has to offer (including the hidden cross).
- Cap: Entirely averted, unusually enough. Even your health doesn't have a maximum value, only a current value. Exaggerated if you repeat the tower after winning with everything multiplied by 44, which you can do multiple times, reaching truly absurd stats.
- Dem Bones: Scattered throughout the tower as low to mid tier enemies. There's one that acts as a mini-boss at the tenth floor.
- Enemy Scan: The Orb of the Hero, the first item you get, shows you the stats of enemies as well as how much damage you'll take if you fight them. It doesn't take special circumstances into consideration, though, like enemies that will get the first shot, or items like the dragonslayer that double your attack against specific enemies.
- Giant Squid: Mixed in with the zombies and evil priests and killer bats, there's a giant octopus filling the center of a room. Because why not.
- Glass Cannon: Swordsmen have very little health and low defence, but several times the attack strength of other monsters in their zone. Fortunately, the player gets the first hit, so once you're strong enough, it's possible to take them out before they land a hit on you. (Except when a cutscene lets them strike first.) There's even a specific hint about how Swordsmen are unreasonably dangerous and you need to find a solution.
- Hit-and-Run Tactics: This comes into play with some of the magicians in the final zone, which can take a player by surprise. Up until that point, almost all enemies, even bosses, just stand there waiting for you to start combat, but some of these ones are mobile. Furthermore, there's no visible indicator of which magicians will retreat after zapping you; you just have to take notes for next time.
- Holy Burns Evil: Becomes important in the undead zone. If you don't find the hidden cross, you probably won't be able to defeat the vampire boss.
- Interchangeable Antimatter Keys: There are three different key colors, for different colored doors, but otherwise this trope is in effect, amassing piles of single-use yellow and blue and red keys. You can actually buy and sell keys in bulk once you complete the first zone.
- Missing Floor: Two of them, actually, one more obvious than the other, but also better guarded. Both have very valuable items (the Lucky Gold, which doubles your combat loot, and the Sacred Shield, which boosts your defence and makes you immune to magic) if you can pull it off.
- Money Multiplier: The Lucky Gold item doubles the gold you get from defeating enemies. It doesn't work retroactively, though, so it's best to get it as early as possible.
- Money Spider: It's reasonable enough that the priests and magicians carry money, and even the skeletons and zombies could have been carrying some before they un-died, but it's best not to ask how slimes and bats leave gold behind.
- New Game Plus: Sort of. After completing the tower, you can play through it again, retaining your current stats but losing your inventory and having all monsters and power ups multiplied by 44. Depending on exactly how well you did the first time, this may make you either weaker or stronger the second time around; you need to have reached around 440 Attack and 440 Defence to break even, and a well planned path through the tower can exceed that.
- No-Sell: If your Defence stat is higher than the attacker's Attack stat, you take no damage at all. This gets turned around on the player a couple of times, notably in the undead zone, where you must use an altar to raise your Attack stat, or you will be entirely unable to hurt Rock monsters.
- Puzzle Boss: Appropriately enough, the Magic Sergeant Zeno is this. He has utterly ludicrous stats, making him entirely invulnerable to your attacks, unless you can find the way to weaken him.
- Stationary Enemy: The vast majority of enemies just stand around waiting for you to fight them. Even the ones that move are triggered by the player's own action; there are no patrols or random movements.
- A Taste of Power: At the start of the game, you have Sacred equipment, allowing you to easily defeat enemies. However, shortly afterwards, you get ambushed and have the items stolen from you.
- Teleportation: The warp staff lets you transport yourself across the current floor, but it's limited-use (some versions make it single-use).
- Unwinnable by Design: It is certainly possible to end up in an impossible situation. This can be due to running out of keys, or having too little health and stats to defeat a mandatory foe. The challenge is to find a path through the tower that doesn't become unwinnable.
- Using You All Along: The princess you're trying to rescue turns out to be a doll; what's really going on is that the Magic Sergeant Zeno wants you to become strong enough to be worthy of the Sacred Sword.
- Weak Boss, Strong Underlings: You actually beat the Golden Knight before you even begin the Knight Zone, and he isn't any stronger when you face him again at the end of the zone. However, the army of soldiers, knights, and swordsmen he throws at you will really hurt.
- Weapon of X-Slaying: There are several items that grant you double damage against specific enemy types, such as the Dragonslayer blade. You're unlikely to defeat the associated bosses without them.