Free Prime Caverns of the Snow WitchAuthor Ian Livingstone –

. CAVERNS OF THE SNOW WITCH is one of the earlier Fighting Fantasy adventures, one with a change of setting a snowbound, mountainous landscape in which merely being outdoors is enough to sap the player s stamina After some very good scene setting material, the action shifts to an icy base inside a mountain, where the player must kill the titular character It s a little like The Warlock of Firetop Mountain, with snow instead of fire I enjoyed it thoroughly, despite dying an unexpected death at the climax this is the type of story that calls for thorough exploration and item gathering The monsters stand out, too, in terms of size, as the player always seems to be up against gargantuan, hard hitting beasts. Deep Within The Crystal Caves Of The Icefinger Mountains, The Dreaded Snow Witch Is Plotting To Bring On A New Ice Age A Brave Trapper Dies In Your Arms And Lays The Burden Of His Mission On Your Shoulders But Time Is Running Out Will YOU Take Up The Challenge This is a gamebook I have wanted to complete for a long, long time As a kid, I was never able to get very far into it The early adversaries, such as the mammoth and yeti, are punishingly difficult if your Skill is low, and I never even got to enter the caverns two decades ago before putting the book back on the shelf and forgetting it Now, all these years on, I have finally completed it Having a Skill of 12 was vital to that process It seems that with Ian Livingstone books, I should just skip the stat rolling and award myself 11 or 12 from the outset to save wasting my time.This book is rich and rewarding in some respects, never dull, but could have been so much and has some serious flaws.The plus side first the icy environment is new and interesting The book is varied, with a wilderness trek to locate the caves the journey through the caves themselves and the confrontation with the Snow Witch escaping the caves in the company of an elf and dwarf the trek back home and the realisation that the Witch has cast a Death Spell upon you, followed by the desperate quest to dispel it before croaking It s really nice to revisit Stonebridge and witness the Hill Troll threat first hand, tying in with The Forest of Doom.The book has lots of great moments like these, and once you know the right path, it s quite smooth flowing provided you have high scores However, that right path is one hell of a beast to discover Take a single mis step and it s impossible to succeed There are items which you MUST have to defeat the Snow Witch But finding them is very counter intuitive and really goes against the grain Or at the very least, getting them confirms you to be a bloodthirsty bandit, not a heroic adventurer And later, when you learn of the Death Curse, it s impossible to survive unless you ve drunk a particular potion, which can only be discovered by following the path which defies all common sense on your homeward journey Essential items for completion of the quest should be found in logical places, where a smart reader can deduce they should look, not deliberately made obscure for the sake of it City of Thieves was a good example of how to place essential items this book is the exact opposite, punishing readers for using their intelligence and rewarding them for murdering opponents who ve shown no overt aggression.The encounter with the Snow Witch is frankly pathetic I had been looking forward to it, a face off against this devilishly attractive but evil vampire witch, a real head to head like the brilliant combat with Balthus Dire at the end of Citadel of Chaos But no, we have a bare paragraph in which she s not even graced with a description Then, if you have the right item, she dies, and if you don t, then you do And that s it Shameful and bitterly disappointing, that such a fascinating opponent can be so wasted.This is slightly made up for when her spirit appears in a crystal orb and hurls punishment on your head before you escape the caverns, but it s a poor substitute for what could have been one of FF s most memorable encounters.Then the second half of the book begins, with the almost completely linear trek to Stonebridge This part is actually quite pleasant, bringing back memories of Forest of Doom.Then you find out about the witch s curse and have to go looking for the healer who can remove it You start losing Stamina left, right and centre, and the hills are packed with really hard encounters that pound you down even That s assuming you found the obscurely hidden item to permit you to survive this long in the first place If you haven t got high, full scores and find the right route almost perfectly, you ll lose so much Stamina so fast you simply won t survive this section It s very unforgiving The actual cure is a bit of an anti climax.It s not a bad book by any means, but it has some very bad decisions in its design, the worst of which is how badly it represents its promising villainess The weakest FF to date, though it shouldn t have been and needn t have been. Je ne me souvenais pas de grand chose pour celui l , part de la couverture qui fait un peu flipper Mais que j aimais ces bouquins quand j tais gosse This gamebook is a pathetic, typical adventure by Ian Livingstone.The story itself is ridiculously linear and uninteresting The main difficulty is, as usual with this writer, tons of fights and objects one must collect in order to be able to survive. Really fun to do if your bored or on a plane but not a novel Not the best FF book but certainly a lot of fun to revist as an adult Very short and quite sparse but worth a few games. Not best FF gamebook at all story too much linear take just one wrong path and you are dead or going to find later that you are already dead and the endless series of fights is just impossible to win if you haven t at last a Skill score of 10 11 , but I really enjoyed the setting, the storyline and all the references to previous books like The Warlock of Firetop Mountain, Deathtrap Dungeon, Forest of Doom and.I had fun playing this classic Fighting Fantasy gamebook, but longevity factor is almost null here.Starting again Steve Jackson s House of Hell as soon as possible D A patchwork of four different adventures22 June 2012 This is nowhere near the quality of the previous Fighting Fantasy gamebooks and I can actually tell you why I first encountered this particular book back when Fighting Fantasy was becoming popular and Steve Jackson and Ian Livingstone decided to release a magazine dedicated to the series The magazine was called Warlock and I believe only six were ever released which is not true, there were a lot However in one or was it two of the magazines Livingstone presented this game book, but adventure in the magazine only went up to where you kill the snow witch and then it ended Since there was not enough for a full blown book, to release it they decided to tack a further adventure onto the end The story has you travelling up north with a trading caravan when you discover that the outpost you are heading towards has been destroyed by some ravenous beast So you decide to set off into the mountain to find this beast, which you do when you also meet a trapper fighting it You kill the beast but the trapper is dying and he tells you about the Snow Witch and how she wants to plunge the land into eternal winter You then set off into the mountains, find her caverns, and then proceed to kill her That was the end of the original adventure, however in the book you must then escape from the caverns, which you can easily do, but the ultimate combat is difficult as she has become a spirit and you must defeat her by outwitting her with a game similar to rock, paper, scissors it uses discs, and you must actually find the discs before you can play it However once you manage to outwit her, the book isn t over as you then travel to Stonebridge with a couple of companions, and then onto the Moonstone Hills when you learn that you have been hit with a Death Spell and must then do one final thing to complete the adventure One of the interesting things about the forth part of the adventure it can be divided into four 1 finding the cavern, 2 killing the snow witch, 3 escaping the cavern, 4 defeating the death spell is that you travel past a number of places from earlier books with hints that you have not completed the books yet You past Firetop Mountain and wonder about the Warlock , cross the river that winds through Fang, and then arrive at Darkwood Forest where you learn that a hammer has been stolen and lost in the forest, so your dwarf companion goes off the find it no doubt dying and passing the quest onto the adventurer from book 3 In a way it is kind of like a memorial tour of some of the earlier books As I said it is not the best as the four sections really are only four different adventures with minimal choices, though there are a couple of places that if you make the wrong turn you pretty much fail the adventure Hints for the necessary items are taking the weapons from the trapper s hut, finding the stake and the flute, finding the discs, and not paying the ferryman to take you across the river you need to meet the dark elf, otherwise you will die There is one other thing you need to climb the tree to the tree house and kill the man orc he has something important as well Still, not the best of the adventures, but now I guess I am going on to The House of Hell.