Personal Computer News

By Infocom
Apple II

Published in Personal Computer News #058


Evil warlock Krill is on the move again, in this new all-text adventure. What is required is someone unknown to Krill, someone who is a newly fledged Enchanter, someone who is you. Fear not, you at least have a Book of Spells. True, it is a slim volume to start with but then you are a very inexperienced Enchanter.

As in all Infocom Adventures, the narrative and descriptions of locations are beautifully detailed. It's like a really good read, in which you take on the major role.

Your ability to cast spells is your major weapon against evil. The catch is you must first find some spell scrolls. The spells can be used immediately but that way they can only be cast once: far better to record them in your spell book - fortunately, you already have a spell to do that for you. Some are too powerful to be written away and so can only be used directly from the scroll. The spells have peculiar names and it's easy in the heat of the moment to panic and cast the wrong one.

As usual with Infocom adventures, the vocabulary is wide and commands can be complex. The accompanying documentation sample lists over 40 verbs. Abbreviations are accepted and you can save and restore the game-state to and from disk. The range of verbs and nouns and the sophistication of the command parser make the playing seem that much more natural.

Expensive but worth every penny - it is an engrossing and thoroughly entertaining, large-scale enchanting adventure.

Geof Wheelwright