Tower Of Destruction
by Keith Martin, fantasy (1991)
Puffin Books, £3.50, ISBN 0-14-034485-3


You are a hardy warrior living in a village in the shadow of the Icefinger Mountains. Yes, this campaign is set in the icy regions of the north of Titan. You are coming home from trading at the market in the outpost of Zengis when you witness a terrifying sight.

With a great wailing like a thousand screaming demons, the black sphere of rock shoots past overhead, fire and smoke trailing in its wake.

This Sphere flies over your village, burning down buildings and barbecuing those in its path, including your parents, into crisp. Naturally, you swear revenge and quickly chase after the Sphere, determined to destroy it and the villain controlling it. You will soon learn that an evil wizard, Zeverin, is behind the whole thing. The Sphere is only a test of sorts: he plans to use the same concept to send his Tower flying to create mayhem and destruction on a larger scale. Naturally, you alone have to stop him.

The whole plot sounds silly, but the campaign is actually more challenging than amusing. Make sure your character has very high stats, or you will regret this even early on into the campaign! That aside, the campaign is pretty serviceable, although there are some horrible bugs such as misprinted entry numbers to turn to and inconsistencies that make playing this campaign a frustrating one. Also, Mr Martin introduces some annoying artificial barriers to make this campaign more challenging. The word "artificial" is used because he creates unrealistic scenarios such as having to go to specific locations in the Ice Palace in a specific order - an order in which you have to guess by trial and error - in order to learn magic. You are not allowed to go back to where you came from, despite the fact that there really should be nothing to stop you from doing so.

Oh, and I have to warn you, there are plenty of Elves in this campaign and they are as annoying as Elves can be.

Tower Of Destruction could have been a decent entry into the series under any other circumstances, as there are nothing particularly spectacular or dire about this campaign aside from the ridiculous concept of a flying tower. But the editing is just horrible, with all those vague wordings of rules and the typographical errors all contributing to making this campaign unnecessarily painful to play at many places. Play this once if you have to, but there isn't much here to compel you to give it another go once you're done.

One oogie! One oogie! One oogie!


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