Le maître des rêves (French)
Majutsu ou o taose! [魔術王をたおせ！] (Japanese)
Il regno di Wyrd (Italian)
Tsarstvo Wyrd [Царство Уирд] (Bulgarian)
Wingate, Geoff (cartography)
August 20, 2014
1909905178 / 9781909905177
For my general comments on the Blood Sword series, see my review of Book 1, The Battlepits of Krarth.
The 'main' storyline of the Blood Sword series commences in this book, as you begin to acquire the pieces of the legendary Blood Sword, while constantly fighting your enemies of the True Magi.
As I've stated before, real effort has gone into the world-building and characterisation of this series. This makes for a memorable story, along with a memorable game-playing experience. Long paragraphs and detailed descriptions add to the atmosphere.
The game structure is again fascinating, as you attempt to defeat the Wytch King and obtain the handle of the Blood Sword. More than in the previous adventure, there is an ongoing need to collect items and trinkets from various places for later use.
In an idea reminiscent of Sword of the Samurai (from the Fighting Fantasy series), at one point you are required to recruit allies for a great battle, using items and information that you have discovered along the way.
A fine entry in the series, which moved from here to its highest point.
Fresh from your adventures in book 1 of the Blood Sword series, The Kingdom of Wyrd introduces to you the main plot that is to be the focus of your adventures. The relic that you acquire turns out to be one of great power, and is hunted by many undesireable forces.
Your journey will expose you further to the lands of Krarth and the surrounding territories. As the relic that was handed to you is incomplete, you have to journey to the Kingdom of Wyrd, where you will pit your skills and any allies you have gathered in your travels against the ruler. As people born outside of Wyrd, only you will have the power to defeat him.
This book actually has two endings, with differing amounts of experience gained. Like book one, there are multiple paths to victory, and each path will provide you with differing challenges.
Definitely a great continuation of the series.
With this entry in the Blood Sword series, Dave Morris and Oliver Johnson really started hitting their stride.
The previous adventure (The Battlepits of Krarth) saw you emerging victorious from a gladitorial dungeon in the frozen wastes of Krarth. This adventure begins with you hearing a Tarot-style prophecy from some old witch in a caravan that you (and your party) have joined in order to travel out of Krarth. The prophecy is bleak, but it's a great way for the authors to foreshadow events that are to come both later in this book and the series as a whole.
The adventure (and the series) kicks off proper when you receive an artifact from a dying troubadour. He tasks you to assemble the Blood Sword, the only weapon capable of defeating the Five Magi, whose return will herald the Apocalypse. Yes, quite cliched, but reading this as a kid it was pretty good stuff.
The rest of the adventure (and the series) sees you tracking down the various bits of the artifact that have been scattered over the lands of Legend. This book concerns you getting the hilt of the Blood Sword from the Witch King in the Kingdom of Wyrd. It's got a lot of really cinematic elements that are, as always, excellently described by the prose of Messrs. Morris and Johnson. From having to defeat the various lackeys of the Five Magi, who are now aware of your quest and are actively seeking to stop you, to having to work a whaling ship for passage across the icy northern sea, to hitching a ride on a flying carpet with the ever so cultured and generous Augustus de Vantery, to duelling wits with rapacious forest elves over a game of chequers... this book has a lot of memorable encounters, and a lot of great treasure to acquire too. One of the most useful magical items that you can get is the Orb of Fire... it's hidden away on a side quest that I missed the first few times through the book (as a kid), so if you want it, be kind to any old doddering knights you might meet on your travels. Ripping the flying carpet from the cold, dead hands of the treacherous de Vantery is always quite fulfulling too (and comes in handy in the third book of the series - The Demon's Claw).
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