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The Sorcerer's Crown

Series: Advanced Dungeons & Dragons Adventure Gamebooks #9
Translated Into: A coroa do feiticeiro (Portuguese)
La corona del hechicero (Spanish)
La corona del mago (Italian)
Majutsushi no oukan [魔術師の宝冠] (Japanese)
Author: Simon, Morris
Illustrators: Caldwell, Clyde (cover)
Barr, George (interior)
Release Date: July, 1986
ISBN: 0880383089 / 9780880383080
Length:190 pages (220 sections)
Number of Endings:35
User Summary: Once again playing the role of Carr Delling, you must go on a journey to unravel a mystery involving an old rival and corrupted paladins.
Demian's Thoughts: Like the previous part of the Kingdom of Sorcery Trilogy, this is only an average gamebook. Like its predecessor, the book suffers from far too many instant kills. These endings exist mainly to herd the player onto the right path; while the book appears somewhat nonlinear, there's really only one path which leads to success. These design flaws aside, it's a fairly entertaining adventure and it ends on something of a cliffhanger. This book is probably not worth reading unless you have the rest of the trilogy.

More reviews by Demian

Guillermo's Thoughts: (review based on the Spanish translation)

This is the second volume in The Kingdom of Sorcery Trilogy, continuing the storyline which started with Sceptre of Power. This time around, the player character is a middle-level mage with an adequate selection of spells at his disposal, and unlike in the first adventure, lots of opportunities are given to use them. It should be noted this book's story is practically impossible to understand if you have not read the prequel to its completion.

The story is one of the book's main strengths. Unlike many other gamebooks, this trilogy presents interesting, deep and endearing characters (some of which were introduced in the first book, while others are introduced in this one). There is also a detailed, diverse setting with a rich background which unfolds as the story moves along.

Gameplay is fun, offering plenty of choices to try, and requiring careful ones in order to reach the optimal ending. There are lots of skill checks in the adventure, many of them leading to failure if they are missed. Nonetheless, by finding the right path it's possible to reduce skill checks – and thus the luck element – to a minimum.

The book's only real flaw seems to be structure: although there are many paths that can be traveled, in order to reach the successful ending the player has to find a long, linear path where the main preoccupation seems to be making sure a succession of events happen in the right order. This may feel railroady at times but provides a decent level of challenge. Definitely recommended.

More reviews by Guillermo

Errata:The path from 184 to 232 should in fact lead to 196; there is no entry 232. Another error involves the fact that a Knock spell is used at one point even though no such spell is listed anywhere.
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