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June 2, 2011
1408309874 / 9781408309872
128 pages (100 sections)
|Number of Endings:
18 (only one victory)
|You must locate and hunt down an evil leader who is planning to raise an army of werewolves and conquer the world.
By the time this book was published, the authors had written a considerable number of pick-a-path books, starting with the 2007 publication of the first title in the EDGE: I, Hero series. While it is certainly commendable that they could keep interest in gamebooks going long after the original boom in the medium had passed, the end result - if this book is anything to go by - is quite disappointing.
The book combines the worst aspects of simple pick-a-path books and full-system gamebooks: lots of action without a rules system to involve the reader in the proceedings, plus a single, very intricate path to victory which can only be discovered by trial-and error. Gameplay feels as if you were playing a print version of the Dragon's Lair arcade game: the whole experience involves choosing the right strategy at every point, and a single wrong choice will lead to failure. This would not be a big problem if there was some reasoning or strategy built into the proceedings, but as it stands, the outcomes of most choices are quite random. As a result, the reader's experience is reduced to plodding through the different paths until the successful ending is found. Frustrating.
The book has other things going against it as well. Editing is poor, with many sentences containing grammatical errors. The authors also have a bad habit of having many choices throughout the book lead to the same failure endings, meaning that, after a while, an alert reader will know which choice not to pick. The interior illustrations are also of poor quality.
Overall, I found this to be quite a disappointing book. Nonetheless, the authors have clearly found a formula that allows them to connect with young audiences, and as a result, they might not care too much what I think of their work. In spite of this, I cannot help but wish the new generations were being exposed to adventure gaming through better materials.
|Thanks to Guillermo Paredes for the cover image, plot summary and other details.
|Users Who Own This Item:
|Eamonn McCusker, Gamebook, Gamebook Collector, jdreller, mlvoss
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