Hey, thaks for the post! I really got a kick out of it, and it reminded me of a few things, similar things, I can share:
1) First got into Wizardry with #1. I had recently got an Apple IIe and had injured my shoulder, so was taking some time off work. Once I got Wiz 1, I was playing a good 20 hours a day, almost the entire week. My living room and kitchen soon turned into a pile of empty TV Dinner trays. I kept starting up parties, adventuring in, levelling up a bit, getting slaughtered, rinse, repeat. One night, while in the dungeon, the power went out. Oh, crap I thought, I just lost everything. But, that was not the case ... I was able to recover my party. That is when the went off, and I started "cheating" ... causing my own "power outage" whenever my party was about to get slaughtered
At some point I also figured out I could make an uber party by rolling a stable full of fighters, keeping the best one, and transferring everyone else gear and $$ to him. Rinse, repeat with each class.
2) Got back into Wizardry about the same time you picked it up. Happened to see Wiz 7 in a bargain bin at Costco or Price Club or some big box store. Since it was in the bargain bin, it may have been a year or three later than you. Once again, I got into the 20 hour a day mode. I would stay up until 4:00 am playing, go to bed, get up at 7:00 am and off to work, back home and playing until 4:00. There were nights that I did have to go to bed for a while, then play later (I was either living with or married to my wife at that point) I think it took me three months to beat the game.
3) Fast forward to the arrival of Wizardry Gold. It had the name "Wizardry" and was new, so I figured it was the next installment.
Oh, what a disappointment. It was just Wiz 7, ported to Windows and with cartoony graphics .. though the mapping feature was nice.
Anyhow, beyond the disappointment was my horror! I had expected to load up my saved games from Wiz 7 and start off Wiz "8" ... but, like you, my saved games were no where to be found. Though I was not really interested in playing Gold, I did want to have some saved games to start Wiz 8 when it did finally come out, and the thought of playing another 3 months just to re-beat the game was not enticing. So, rather than play Wiz Gold, I reverse engineered the saved game file, to figure out how to give my characters a butt-load of experience, so they could level up and breeze through the game, right out of the gate.
That was easy enough, so I decided to take it a "step" further, learned Visual Basic (my 7th or so computer language at that point) and created my editor. That is a story, in itself The best part of the story probably being my dream of riches ... knowing that over 5 milion copies of Wiz 7 were sold, and if I reached just 1/10 of a percent of those Wziardry owners and sold my edtor for $10 I could be rich. Ah, the early days of the internet and the irrational exuberance we all had ... As it turned out, I think I made my money back after about 2 years
So, anyhow, I could point you to an editor (I still have my copy of SlickEdit - circa 1997 - that I use for hex-editing), and walk you through it ... or you could just send me your saved game file and I could edit it, and send it back. I've done that in other cases, many a time.
Tools for Wizardry(r) 7