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Item - Vampires, Spies and Alien Beings

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(Second printing)
(Second printing)
(Second printing)
(Second printing)
(Fourth printing)
(Fourth printing)
(Fourth printing)
(Fourth printing)

Combined Summary

Series: Which Way Books — no. 2
Contained In: Which Way Books Boxed Set (Collection)
Translated Into: Vampiros, espioes e seres extraterrestres (Portuguese)
Authors: Austin, R. G. (pseudonym used by multiple people)
Gelman, Rita Golden (uncredited)
Lamb, Nancy (uncredited)
Illustrator: Kramer, Anthony
Date: January, 1982 (First printing)
ISBNs: 0671432648 / 9780671432645 (First printing)
0671457586 / 9780671457587 (Second printing)
0671473735 / 9780671473730 (Fourth printing)
Length: 120 pages
Number of Endings: 32
Cover Price: US$1.95 (Second printing)
US$0.99 (Fourth printing)
User Summary: You win a trip to see three movies being filmed. Unfortunately, the day you visit the set a new special effects device malfunctions, causing all of the movies to become real.
Demian's Thoughts:

Not many gamebooks mix horror, science fiction and espionage, and though the plot device this one uses is pretty cheesy, it's still a lot of fun. As with most books in this series, the game design is of much higher quality than the actual writing.

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Fireguard's Thoughts:

The book is pretty good considering it's cramming basically three different stories into such a small space. I didn't like the horror movie as much as the other two considering Which Way attempts the genre with much greater success in Invasion of the Black Slime, but on the whole the book isn't unsatisfying.

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noonxnoon's Thoughts:

One of my favorite game books back in the day.

I enjoyed having three unique plots to choose from, and each one was quite colorful in story as well as illustrations to help give that extra punch.

The spy story... there was a decent plot. Some of the characters were hokey, like the tin man dude, but it was fun. The mysterious tape and then getting shot at, not knowing what was going on... and then the story quickly unfolding until you have to figure out how to save the city from the water being drugged. Sure was good they made plenty of antidote, yet if I were a bad guy, I'd spend all my resources to make more mind controlling drugs and maybe 1 or 2 dosages for myself in case I forget which drink is mine! By the way, wasn't this one of the Batman story plots? The bad guys were putting mind controlling drugs into the city's water supply... hmmmm...

The Alien story was a different take. You get to choose whether to go with the good guys or the bad guys, though the bad guy selection finished pretty quickly. I admit, when I was a kid and devilishly picked going with the Gorks, I felt pretty bad after I got cursed with purple eyes and no power.

The vampire story was probably the most memorable: you are starting in a new school, and the teacher is creepy and intimidating. Do you obey his authority and risk your life, or disobey and worry about getting in "normal" trouble for disobedience? The sub choices were interesting: tracking the teacher or going out for pizza; staying late at the school; and the best... letting the hot chick bite your neck so you don't have to go to school anymore!!!

Fun read!

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tonylachief's Thoughts:

While enjoyable, this book is a real lost opportunity. It has one of the most interesting premises I've ever come across in a book (i.e., a special effects machine meant to create realism on the movie set goes haywire thereby transforming fiction into reality). Each story branch within each of the three main arcs starts off with serious promise but unfortunately they are never well developed and ultimately do not conclude satisfactorily. With such a fantastic premise, I wish the story branches were longer and that the book had fewer endings. As it stands, it gives a great thought provoking start, leaving the reader hungry for more, followed by abrupt endings in every offshoot. Rating: 7/10.

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yunakitty's Thoughts:

An interesting, fun little gamebook... as usual, it's a little "darker" than Choose Your Own Adventures. I've noticed that Which Way books seem to be like that. The artwork is done by Anthony Kramer, who freaked me out with the Which Way book about the circus. The pictures are both silly and nightmare inducing at the same time.

It is possible to get stuck in an endless loop in this book, as the "exit" from the alien story can be to end up in the spy story, to which you can exit by going to the vampire story, and then you can loop right back to the alien story. It'd be interesting to see if you could read every page on one readthrough without excessive overlaps.

Anyway, the spy plot was not all that great, while the alien and vampire plots were pretty interesting. I noticed that the morality was pretty heavy handed in this book; i.e., if you choose to accept the evil powers from the bad aliens, you get only bad endings; if you decide to be lazy and say you want to never go to school again, you get turned into a vampire, etc. I actually like that, because it helps readers to pick the right decisions, when it's at least a little based in reality with the good judgment. I don't always like stories where the outcome is TOTALLY random. (R. A. Montgomery, anyone? Do something bad, you die. Do something good, you die HARD. Do nothing, a rhinoceros charges out of nowhere and impales you.)

Fun little book, worth the read.

More reviews by yunakitty

Users Who Own This Item: Andys80s, Ardennes, Arkadia, auximenes, bmcwebdesign, bookwormjeff, bunnyhero, CSquared, Cyan, Darth Rabbitt, dave2002a, Demian (Second and fourth printings), Ed, Erikwinslow, exaquint, firefoxpdm, Fireguard, Gamebook, Grifter, Gurvo, Himynameistony, horrorbusiness, jdreller, katzcollection, kevmp, KJB, kleme (special price), knginatl (orig., ".99"), Lambchop, ManxAlleyCat, marnaudo, mcd, mlvoss, nelsondesign, Nomad, noonxnoon, ntar, Pseudo_Intellectual, resurgens, spragmatic, strawberry_brite, ThaRid (2 copies), Von Scotty, waktool (Fourth printing), Yalius, yunakitty
Users Who Want This Item: exaquint (99c), Ffghtermedic, Gartax, kinderstef, MacbthPSW, NEMO, Ryuran333, ThisIslandEarth, wonderfly
Users with Extra Copies: exaquint
Lambchop - Good copy, tight spine no damage. Pics on request. Prefer to trade books for something on my want list.

Known Editions

First printing
Second printing
Fourth printing

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