upon a time in these lands . . . ' Isvar turned away
from the storyteller and knocked back the remainder
of his pint. He'd heard the story so many times, about
how the Land of Fairlight had changed from a happy place
to one of desolation and misery. All that was 3,000
years ago when King Avars held his court in the Castle
of Avars on the Plains of Avarslund. The storytellers
claimed that then was a time of light and magic, but
who really cares? Today is a time of Feudalism, with
the frightened peoples of these fragmented lands ruled
by a group of ruthless Barons and Merchants.
Isvar left the Tavern and strolled across the fields.
Although it was July the sky was grey and the clouds
had that strange tint that always heralded snow. In
the distance was a dark band which caught his eye, the
edge of Ogri's Wood. The sight of this caused Isvar
to ponder, 'The Elders claim that there are poisonous
snakes in that wood and that it is an evil place' he
said to himself. But he knew that there were no snakes
at this latitude and anyway, the cold would have killed
them off if there were any, so why had he been told
never to enter? With his thoughts racing he leapt across
a muddy brook across the fields towards the forbidden
-- Our hero sitting at a table, waiting for a
drink that will never be served.
pushing his way through the bramble barbs he found a
clear forest track and confidently strode along it.
The woods bordering the path were thick and dark and
it was becoming increasingly difficult to see anything,
when Isvar suddenly heard the sound of undergrowth being
trampled. A wave of cold fear swept over him and he
hastened along the path, looking over his shoulder.
There was nothing to be seen so he took a deep breath
and turned -- and there stood a huge woman-like creature.
As he gazed at her he found himself becoming transfixed,
his body numb and his eyelids heavy . . .
awoke what seemed like an eternity later. The typically
cold and damp Fairlignt day had given him aching limbs
and he shivered. A slight noise caused him to look round
and there, in the entrance to the cave, stood a hooded
figure. Before he could react in any way it spoke 'arise
Isvar, we have much to do, and if you do not move I
fear that Ogri will return and feast upon you as her
breakfast'. Isvar jumped to his feet and followed the
man into the glade outside. 'You have strayed, but I
can lead you to safety' said the mysterious man and
he turned and strode down the nearby slope. Isvar hurried
after him and they both pushed through the undergrowth.
found the booze but there's a big fat hairy ogre
waiting to serve up a helping of GBH instead.
what seemed like an age, the overgrown path reached
a smooth wall and the old man turned to follow it. Suddenly
he turned and swiftly disappeared into an opening in
the wall, beckoning Isvar to follow him. The opening
led to a courtyard and Isvar looked about him and suddenly
knew where he was -- the Castle Avars! He turned and
looked at the wall but it was seamless. He was trapped.
Instantly waves of panic coursed through him, but the
hooded man spoke and his voice was reassuring 'I have
lured you to this castle. You see, I live here, or rather
I am a prisoner here, being held by the slayer of King
Avars; I was his sorcerer. What you see is just a projected
image of myself. I must be freed and the only way that
can be is for you to find the Book of Light, hidden
somewhere within these walls. You will see trolls, guards
and many other creations which are here to destroy anybody
who manages to gain entrance to this castle. Do not
fail.' And with that the image of the sorcerer disappeared
. . .
play the role of the reluctant hero and you can move
anywhere on screen as long as ground, stairs or other
objects allow and strolling off screen causes the game
to flick and show another location. The game does its
best to behave just like real life and Isvar can clamber
up and down steps, jump on and off objects, and so on.
He can also pick up, use and drop objects. Isvar has
five pockets in his garments, each of which can hold
one object. Some objects have magical uses and others
are for practical purposes. You'll just have to find
out which object does what and why by experimenting.
Bigger objects, like tables, barrels or chairs can't
be carried if Isvar has other things, but they can always
be pushed along.
are quite a few weirdoes residing in the castle and
all of them deplete Isvar's life force if he touches
them. This life force is displayed on screen as a counter
which starts at 99 and diminishes as he gets beaten
up. He can fight with his trusty sword, although not
all of the nasties can be prodded to death. Luckily
the hero can top up his life force by eating (using)
the food and wine which can be found around the castle.
are plenty of locations and they're all colour coded
so you know where you're at. For example all the open
air locations are blue, but there are also caves, tiled
rooms, towers with flights of stairs -- you'll just
have to discover for yourselves.