IFReviewed by Bob Davis
on 2006-05-06 01:56
Reviewer’s Rating: 8
Difficulty Rating: 8
Extra Commands: 6.0 commands, MINE, JUMP, EAT, TRADE, PULL, INSERT
Special Features: Must SAVE to another diskette to save game
Playing Time: Undetermined (due to bugs), but less then 8 hours
It is a bad time for the free people. The forces of the Dark Lord, Sauron, are massing; armies of orcs, trolls, and evil beasts are strengthening the shadow that will soon envelope the Earth.
For the moment, the land of the west is protected by the Misty Mountains which Sauron is not yet ready to cross. The men of the south have been fighting bravely, but cannot hold out long against Sauron’s dark forces. But there is hope. At great risk, a wizard and his ranger companion smuggled information out of Sauron’s fortress which could be of great use to the men of the south. They set out to deliver the information but discovered all paths through the Misty Mountains were blocked due to winter storms and other routes were watched by Sauron. The two men decided to take the path that would not be watched by the Dark Lord because it is more terrible than his army – through the mines of Moria.
Built by the dwarves long ago, Khazad-Dum (the Halls of the Dwarves), became the center of dwarfdom. Skilled dwarvish miners built a kingdom under the Misty Mountains. The mines produced immeasurable amounts of gold, silver, iron, jewels, and most important – Mithril, the most valuable metal on Earth! But the dwarves dug too deep and awoke evil things far below the Earth. Many dwarves were slain and the rest were forced to flee. The doors were shut and Khazad-Dum was renamed Moria – The Black Chasm.
As a precaution, the wizard left a copy of the information with the bartender at the Main Hall. The wizard has not been heard from and the bartender now gives you the information to deliver. Your mission is to enter the mines of Moria from the west, survive in Moria, find the exit, ‘East-gate,’ and deliver the information to friends.
The setting may sound familiar to you. It is from the Lord of the Rings. And like the book, the action doesn’t stop. The monsters are mean and plentiful, the way through the mines is treacherous and the clues/hints are very, very subtle.
I found a variety of monsters from orcs to trolls and from spiders to dragons. The dungeon kept me interested with gates, cave-ins and chasms. A little humor is threaded throughout the adventure. All in all, I am very impressed with Sam Ruby’s style. And this is his first adventure! What do I have to look forward to?
This is part one of a three part series. Part two is adventure #109 – The Forest of Fear. Part three we have not received yet, but have learned from this adventure (#108) that is will be titled the Ring of Doom. One need not have to go through the series in order or have all three diskettes to play the adventures.
The only problem I had with the Mines of Moria were the bugs (see this issue’s Bug Bytes column.) However, bugs in a good adventure are much preferable to perfect code (or no special programming) in a boring adventure. Sam Ruby definitely does not making boring adventures and seems to have a very good grasp of what the Dungeon Designer 6.0 can do for an adventure. I am looking forward to playing and reviewing The Forest of Fear.
Used with Matthew Clark's kind permition.
Original review available at Eamon Adventurer's Guild Online website.