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Item - Castle of the Undead

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Online Full Text: Internet Archive
Series: Endless Quest — no. 38
Translated Into: O Castelo dos Mortos-Vivos (Portuguese)
Author: Barr, George
Illustrators: Caldwell, Clyde (cover)
Dykstra, Terry (interior)
Date: March, 1994
ISBN: 1560768363 / 9781560768364
User Summary: You and a telepathic wolf find yourselves whisked off to another world overrun by undead.
Fireguard's Thoughts:

Now that's a solid premise if ever I heard one, and by solid I mean silly. The atmosphere is fairly effective, I'll give them that, but the book just isn't much fun to explore. It's not engaging or groundbreaking, and sometimes it's just weird. I never got why the author decided to make the main character's skin change color when he moved to the other world; I half-expected to run into The Maxx somewhere. I also didn't find my avatar appealing. It wore on my nerves after a while to have the wolf explain everything to me or give me warnings, as if my character was stupid and couldn't figure things out for himself. If only the book had continued as bizarrely as it began.

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Kveto's Thoughts:

Another book from the second series, it has about 40 sections in 188 pages. It has lengthy entries and the choices are fewer and far between, but this allows the writer to add atmosphere. Like all of the others I've read from the early 1990s, it is a very good entry.

You play Randar, an orphaned teenager who works for a caravan leader. The caravan is ambushed by a gang of undead in a chilling scene. This leads to an adventure in another world, where the undead rule, accompanied by a telepathic wolf.

It reminded me quite a bit of the Richard Matheson novel I am Legend, where humans are trying to survive in a world controlled by vampires and undead, with a savior-type protagonist. Overall a pretty cool concept for a gamebook.

The only slight knock I could level is it could have had a few more choices, such as when you first encounter the wolf during the vampire ambush. It would have been a natural time to decide whether to trust the telepathic wolf or not, but the story decides for you. That said, it took me a few tries to win.

Overall, a fun and creepy book with an interesting storyline.

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Special Thanks:Thanks to Fireguard for the plot summary.
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