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9 Stars IFReview Rating Walled City of Darkness

IFReviewed by Pat Hurst on 2006-05-13 09:36 

Game Profile

Author
Tom Zuchowski

Idiom
English

Authoring System
Eamon

Release Year
1988

IFR Overall Rating
9 Stars IFR Overall Rating
Separator

MAIN PGM Version: 6.2 (modified)

Extra Commands: PRAY, ENTER, EARN, BUY, PAY, SELL, WEAR, REMOVE, REQUEST

Modified commands: SAVE & RESTORE (up to 3 games) LOOK & EXAMINE, GIVE

Special Features: 40/80 column capability; Author's notes, accessible at start, wearable artifacts, no Dos on disk.

Playing Time: 3-4 hours minimum, the maximum depends on your ability to solve the puzzles.

Reviewer's rating: 8.5

Description: A feeling of uneasiness leads you to consult a local seer who directs you to Hokas Tokas in the city of Lumen. As you enter the city you are cast into darkness and seized by some unseen presence. It paws through your things, and you sense its pleasure as it takes your gold and its scorn as it laughs at your magic weapons. A timely intercession by Hokas Tokas drags you free of the malevolent force. Within the city you find Hokas who says:

'You have come at last! Almost had I come to despair that you would arrive in time! The situation is most desperate. Lumen, the patron god of the city, has been cast down by his ancient enemy, a god of evil whose name is not spoken. The darkness that seals the city is his work and we will soon be doomed. Other gods, unfriendly to the Nameless, have taken Lumen's possessions into their keeping in the hope that a champion will appear who has the wit and worth to win the trappings of a god, and banish the Nameless to the pit from whence he came. Go now as there is no champion who may better succeed than yourself. I have informed the gods of your arrival.'

Comments: The above is an abbreviated version of the Intro program which belies the rich texture of the adventure. The author has taken great pains to detail this adventure in such a way as to animate the city and its inhabitants. The descriptions are not so lengthy as to impede the play of the adventure, however.

The adventure contains several puzzles (or tasks) which must be solved and their solutions are not particularly obvious in some cases. You must be attentive to details and very thorough in tracking your progress. To assist the player, there is an Astrologer who may occasionally offer some advice. You can save up to three games at once and you should save after completing any complicated task. You can die in this adventure, but if you are properly prepared, death is unlikely. However, the proper preparation isn't always easy to determine. I would recommend that you know how to resurrect a character on your master disk before playing this adventure. Certain eventualities may terminate your character or you may become hopelessly stuck.

This is another solid adventure by Zuchowski. It will have more appeal to problem-solving types than hack-and-slash types. There are some nice special effects and some punny references. My only real criticism is that you'll do a lot of traipsing around the town before you're done. Overall, I would recommend this adventure, primarily to experienced players.

Used with Matthew Clark's kind permition.
Original review available at Eamon Adventurer's Guild Online website.

    Pat Hurst Profile

    Name Pat Hurst
    Gender Male