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FredMSloniker
Jan 2, 2008

Why, yes, I do like Kirby games.




Creature of Havoc is rightly considered one of the hardest, if not the hardest, Fighting Fantasy gamebooks. It's notorious for, among other things, being able to lose without ever making a meaningful decision, having many ways to be 'walking dead' - including large, interesting sections of the book - and containing an error that makes it impossible to complete unless you take an action the text was supposed to tell you about but doesn't. Being able to beat the book 'legit', even when you know exactly what you're doing, requires more than a little luck.

So let's cheat vigorously at it.

The way this LP works is simple. I'll put up a reference from the book. (I'm working from a kind of grotty scan, so if someone can point me to a text dump or something, I'd appreciate it.) You'll tell me what choice you want to make. To discourage just jumping on bandwagons, I'm going to implement a raffle, randomly selecting one person from everyone who chimes in and using that person's choice. We're going to keep going until we die or run out of references we haven't visited already, at which point I'll ask how far you want to rewind, and we'll pick up from there, using the same raffle system. I'll be keeping track of where we go, so once we've decided there's no point in going a certain direction, I'll take it off the list of choices.

The cheating is as follows: we'll make no rolls for combat, skills, or anything else, and we take no damage from anything. We will ride eternal, shiny and chrome. (Well, until we hit one of the many, many instadeaths or dead ends.) However, we will not cheat when it comes to items or information; if we need a bafomdad to get past the Skull Gate, our path through the book must collect it.

There's about 20 pages of lore at the start of the book, but we start knowing none of it, and it's barely relevant to the adventure, so I'm not going to bother transcribing it. I'm also going to skip character creation, since, as previously noted, our stats are Yes, so let's get stuck right in at:

Reference 1 posted:

The pain is unbearable! Summoning up all your energy, you open your eyes - first one, then the other. They narrow to slits as they adjust themselves to the strain of trying to see once more, then relax as they make out familiar shapes in the dim light: a dirt floor, rocky walls... Then the pain takes over. Your head rocks. Your eyes submit and close tightly in an agonized grimace. Instinctively you raise your hands to cup your face, and a low moan mingles with the rasping sound as your rough fingers rub the scaly skin above your eyes.

After some time the pain begins to ease. You open your eyes once more and peer out from between your gnarled fingers. You seem to be at the dead end of a passageway. Your surroundings are barely visible, but a dull glow is coming from the northern extent of the passageway, which stretches before you. A sound is also coming from this direction - of irregular breathing. Something alive is up there! You heave your great bulky body to its feet. Along your back, the spines bristle. Swinging your heavy head slowly from side to side, your progress is decided: northwards is the only option open to you. Muscles strain and succeed in raising a lumbering foot, which thuds loudly down on the ground in front of you. You repeat the action, first with one foot, then the other. After four steps the motion has become automatic. You are moving more quickly and more quietly up the passage. When you reach the end, your eyes are drawn to a huddled shape lying on the ground in front of you.

The small figure lies on its side, facing away from you. It is shrouded in a dirty brown cape tied around its neck and it lies in a puddle of thick red liquid. Its body rises and falls irregularly with each breath. Some unidentified feeling swells within you. Is it anger? Hate? Fear? Curiosity? Hunger? Or even sympathy? You bend down towards the little creature, uttering a meaningless grunt as you do.

The sound rouses the figure, which rolls slowly over to face you. The creature's dirty face is light-skinned, though barely visible under the thick hair which shades its closed eyes and almost totally obscures its mouth. From its chin the hair rolls abundantly down its chest in a grey, unruly mass. Underneath the body, and now exposed by the creature's movement, is a sharp, shiny shaft and this catches your attention.



As you stand there staring, the creature's eyes flick open! They focus on your bulky shape and a look of terror streaks across the creature's face. In spite of its pain, it fumbles for and grasps the shiny shaft, holding its pointed end out towards you and baring its teeth.

The wounded Dwarf you have found is evidently in need of help. Will you:
  • Show him you mean no harm? Turn to 93. (We haven't read this reference before.)
  • Try to talk to him? Turn to 364. (We haven't read this reference before.)
  • Bring your foot down heavily on his neck? Turn to 185. (We haven't read this reference before.)



Bad Ends so far:
  1. Had our free will taken by a Wizard before we even got it. (392)
  2. Hi ho, hi ho, it's off to work we go for the rest of our lives! (78)
  3. Working as a guard for Zharradan Marr completely of our own free will. (43)
  4. Just when we thought we were out... they pulled us back in! (37)
  5. Drank the wrong potion in Dree and lost our free will. (294)
  6. Trick question! There wasn't a right potion. (196)
  7. Trapped like a rat, then tortured like a simile. (370)

Deaths so far:
  1. Up poo poo Creek without a paddle. (71)
  2. Same poo poo, different reference. (60)
  3. This is not how you make Swiss cheese! (99)
  4. Nibbled to death by the worst Elven marksman ever. (14)
  5. What Dark Elves lack in quality what they make up for in quantity. (260)
  6. WTF is this poo poo? (418)
  7. On the end of Morton's fork: death by floortrap... (80)
  8. ...or death by poisonous slime. (317)
  9. Fell victim to an Acme Portable Hole. (445)
  10. Step into my parlour, said the Chattermatter to the creature. (439)
  11. Floortrap hat trick. (30)
  12. Slow-roasted creature. (339)
  13. When you surrender to something called a Shadow Stalker, you get what you deserve. (135)
  14. A dead end. Geddit? Geddit? (179)
  15. It's a dead man's party. (296)
  16. See how much poo poo we have to put up with? (193)
  17. To defeat an infinite number of Chaos Warriors, you must first defeat an infinite number of Chaos Warriors. (425)
  18. This is the fifth time we've had to deal with this poo poo! (338)
  19. I'm really getting sick of this poo poo! (94)
  20. Mud wrestling is more dangerous than it looks. (108)
  21. I hope you weren't planning on sleeping this week, Jesus! (286)
  22. Deja vu: the feeling you are doing something you have done before. (98)
  23. I thought we were done with this poo poo! (345)
  24. Cannibalistic turnabout is fair play. (175, by way of 57)
  25. Don't mess with the ents. (434)
  26. Stuck like a pig. (278)
  27. You can fight, but you'll only die tired. (36)
  28. This'll dissolve the problem! (214)
  29. It's official. You suck. (175, by way of 431)
  30. Part of a two-course meal. (10)
  31. Klingon Promotion denied! (305)
  32. We aren't Ash, and we can't fight the Army of Darkness. (321)
  33. This secret passage isn't OSHA-compliant! (413)
  34. Got involved in an organ-legging operation in the worst way. (35)
  35. I've got a sinking feeling... (83)
  36. Never trust a Toadman. (68)
  37. Croaked by some Toadmen. (287)
  38. I feel like Creature tonight, like Creature tonight! (336)
  39. By their powers combined, you are Hobgoblined to death! (302)
  40. Killed a starving creature? Became a starving creature. (109)
  41. Everyone complains about the weather, but the Weather Mage did something about it. (47)
  42. "You're dead. We killed you! We killed you!" (105)
  43. I AM THE GOD OF HELLFIRE AND I BRING YOU (194)
  44. A nightmare come true! (228)
  45. An invincible skeleton, and us with no pit to drop it into! (407 <-> 178)

FredMSloniker fucked around with this message at 03:17 on May 9, 2021

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BraveLittleToaster
May 5, 2019


Bring your foot down heavily on his neck, that seems like a swell way to start things off with our new acquaintance.

I've never heard of this gamebook before, but now I want to see what it pulls off in terms of dick moves.

Sjs00
Jun 29, 2013

Yeah Baby Yeah !

Show him we mean no harm

FredMSloniker
Jan 2, 2008

Why, yes, I do like Kirby games.


BraveLittleToaster posted:

I've never heard of this gamebook before, but now I want to see what it pulls off in terms of dick moves.

You're in for a treat.

Sjs00 posted:

Show him we mean no harm

Reference 93 posted:

You reach down with your hand to help him to his feet. But as you move, the little creature strikes and his sword cuts into your forearm. Luckily the tough scales prevent it from doing any real harm, but you must still lose 2 STAMINA points. Considering your size in comparison to his, his action was understandable!

Now, instead of reaching for his arm, your hand opens and grips the Dwarf's neck. You struggle to control your actions, but to no avail. Your sharp talons dig into the unfortunate creature's flesh. His eyes bulge and he tries to scream. Frantically, he hits you again with the sword, but the blow lacks power. Deduct 1 more STAMINA point. Then his body goes limp.

Your tremendous strength put the poor creature out of its misery, but the incident has left you feeling very strange. Although you wished to help the Dwarf, you have helped him only to an early grave. Will you:
  • Put these thoughts out of your mind and leave the area? Turn to 248. (We haven't read this reference before.)
  • Try to hide the body? Turn to 218. (We haven't read this reference before.)
  • Examine the body? Turn to 399. (We haven't read this reference before.)

FredMSloniker fucked around with this message at 17:28 on Apr 24, 2021

BraveLittleToaster
May 5, 2019


Examine that dead body.

TheGreatEvilKing
Mar 28, 2016



Hide the evidence

Did we just get mind controlled into killing the dwarf? What the gently caress?

Also we have...scales? Are we a mutant lizard dude?

FredMSloniker
Jan 2, 2008

Why, yes, I do like Kirby games.


TheGreatEvilKing posted:

Did we just get mind controlled into killing the dwarf? What the gently caress?

Also we have...scales? Are we a mutant lizard dude?

Excellent questions, both! One of the other covers for the book makes us look a bit like a zombie yeti, but I think you're closer to how we're described in the book.

BraveLittleToaster posted:

Examine that dead body.

Reference 399 posted:

Your hands relax and the sharp claws retract into your fingers. You clumsily fumble through the Dwarf's dirty vestments. Your fingers will not fit into the pockets, but you do succeed in snapping the thongs of a large leather pouch which the creature has around its waist. As the ties break, the pouch spills its contents on the ground in front of you. It contained several circular pieces of shiny metal and a piece of hide, which unfolds as it drops out of the pouch. It is light in colour and has markings all over one side. You pick it up awkwardly and look at it, but it makes no sense at all. You become quite fascinated by this piece of leather. You turn it round, rub it with your hands and throw it in the air. You place it on your arm and on your head. You decide to take the leather with you. Unknown to you, the message on the hide may be useful later in your adventure. Turn to 337 to examine the message. If you are carrying this piece of hide, you may return to 337 at any time to re-examine it, but you will need to remember the reference you have come from in order to return and continue.

Reference 337 contains an encoded message. We'll come back to this if and when we learn the code.

Reference 399a posted:

As you may have realized by now, your own wishes have little effect on your reactions as a creature. You have only glimpses of what you are like and what you are capable of. Although this will change as the adventure progresses, at this stage you are at the mercy of your own whims and instincts. You are standing at a junction where you may go either east or west. Roll one die:
  • Roll 1, 2, or 3? Turn to 308. (We haven't read this reference before.)
  • Roll 4, 5, or 6? Turn to 148. (We haven't read this reference before.)
Remember me saying that we can lose without making any meaningful decisions? This is how. Roll wrong on this reference, or one of the following references, and you're doomed. But because we're dirty cheats, I leave the choice, blind as it is, to you!

FredMSloniker fucked around with this message at 17:29 on Apr 24, 2021

Arcvasti
Jun 12, 2019

Never trust a bird.

FredMSloniker posted:

Remember me saying that we can lose without making any meaningful decisions? This is how. Roll wrong on this page, or one of the following pages, and you're doomed. But because we're dirty cheats, I leave the choice, blind as it is, to you!

Wow, that's even worse then Deathtrap Dungeon and the statue with emerald eyes, where prying out one eye will give you the gem you need to escape the Dungeon, but if you pry out the other it's filled with poison gas and instantly murders you.

BraveLittleToaster
May 5, 2019


Roll for the 1-2-3 count page.

Foxfire_
Nov 8, 2010



TheGreatEvilKing posted:

Also we have...scales? Are we a mutant lizard dude?
We are a Creature of Havoc

I don't remember which page is which, so 3 => page 308 page 148 (Creature of Havoc doesn't follow instructions)

FredMSloniker
Jan 2, 2008

Why, yes, I do like Kirby games.


BraveLittleToaster posted:

Roll for the 1-2-3 count page.

Reference 308 posted:

You travel west along a twisting passageway. Several times you bump clumsily into the walls and grunt in annoyance. But your tough scales protect you from damage. The temperature drops noticeably and each breath sends steamy snorts from your nostrils. After narrowing slightly, the passage widens as it leads towards a chamber. A sound from ahead and a flickering light warn you to take care. But rather than making you stop to listen, the prospect of an encounter seems to excite you! You bare your teeth and your claws and stride forward into the chamber. Turn to 205.

Reference 205 posted:

Roaring like an enraged Demon, you rush into the open chamber, ready to take on whatever is inside. Terrified shrieks come from the small party of adventurers huddling around a makeshift campfire in the centre of the area. Three figures are warming themselves by the fire. One wears shiny clothes that clink as he moves. Another is dressed in red and also grows long dark hair from his chin. The third is a tiny creature with polished hide on his chest. He has no hair on his chin, but has plenty on his feet, which he has been holding up to warm at the fire. Your eyes fix on the smallest of the three. Your breathing gets heavier and a feeling of pure hatred grips you. Without hesitating, you stomp across and grab the miserable Hobbit with your claws. The other two are caught off balance and are slow to react. The Hobbit has no weapon and should be an easy victim:

HOBBIT    SKILL 5    STAMINA 6

Do you:
  • Defeat the Hobbit in three or fewer rounds? Turn to 160. (We haven't read this reference before.)
  • Defeat the Hobbit in more than three rounds? Turn to 86. (We haven't read this reference before.)

I'm going to digress a bit to discuss the combat rules in Fighting Fantasy and how they're different in Creature of Havoc. In a Fighting Fantasy book, you typically have three stats: SKILL, STAMINA, and LUCK. (The all-caps is insisted upon.) SKILL is a catch-all competency stat, most often used in combat but also used to complete various tasks. STAMINA is your health; when it hits zero, you're dead. LUCK is used to avoid various dangers and can be spent to reduce incoming damage or increase outgoing damage during a fight.

You roll up your initial stats at the start of the book. Usually you roll one die (Fighting Fantasy books always use standard six-siders) and add six for your SKILL and LUCK each, while STAMINA is two dice plus twelve. Various events can raise and lower your stats, but not above their initial values unless otherwise noted.

Basic combat encounters go like this: roll two dice each for you and your opponent, adding your SKILL and their SKILL to the appropriate rolls. Whoever loses (ties do nothing but waste a round) loses two STAMINA. Rinse and repeat until someone dies. You can Test your Luck (capitalization as given in the book) to change the damage done; if you're successful, you double the damage you deal or avoid damage you receive, but if you're not, you halve the damage you deal or take an additional point of damage. Whether or not you succeed, you lose a point of LUCK.

It's possible to get into combat with more than one opponent at once (though sometimes they'll wait in line like chivalrous mooks or be aggregated into a single entity). You choose who you want to attack before rolling dice, then compare your roll to each opponent's, but you can only damage the one you targeted; beating other opponents merely prevents damage from them.

Because we are a Creature of Havoc, we have a special combat rule: if we roll doubles on our attack roll, our opponent dies instantly. (The original text for this reference doesn't take this into account; the option to turn to 160 actually reads, "If you defeat the creature in three straight Attack Rounds...")

Our chance of beating this guy in a straight fight in three rounds or less, without Testing our Luck, ranges from about 68.78% (with a SKILL of 7) to about 98.72% (with a SKILL of 12). (I didn't calculate the chance that we'd lose this fight, as working out how to handle an arbitrary number of ties is more work than it's worth right now.) That said, we aren't doing a straight fight. But maybe we want to see what happens if we take too long? The choice is yours.

FredMSloniker fucked around with this message at 17:30 on Apr 24, 2021

BraveLittleToaster
May 5, 2019


Defeat the Hobbit in three or fewer rounds.

Got to keep the element of surprise, no mercy for hobbits.

Ignatius M. Meen
May 26, 2011

Hello yes I heard there was a lovely trainwreck here and...



Hobbits are chumps, we can beat him in less than three rounds.

TheGreatEvilKing
Mar 28, 2016



Instakill

Whybird
Aug 2, 2009

Phaiston have long avoided the tightly competetive defence sector, but the IRDA Act 2052 has given us the freedom we need to bring out something really special.

https://team-robostar.itch.io/robostar




Nap Ghost

Murder the poo poo outta that hobbit

FredMSloniker
Jan 2, 2008

Why, yes, I do like Kirby games.


Ignatius M. Meen posted:

Hobbits are chumps, we can beat him in less than three rounds.

Reference 160 posted:

As the creature dies, you sink your teeth into its arm to taste its juicy flesh. But then you remember the other two adventurers. The red-robed figure is facing you, pointing hte little finger of each hand at you and mumbling. The shiny human has grabbed a sword - similar, you remember, to the Dwarf's, but larger - and is shouting to the other: "Control its mind, shaman! It may be able to lead us to that Swinebeard cur!" You cannot fight both at once. Which will you direct your attention to? Test your Luck.
  • If you are Lucky, turn to 292. (We haven't read this reference before.)
  • If you are Unlucky, turn to 48. (We haven't read this reference before.)

We can't actually get the code before reaching this reference, incidentally, but I've gone ahead and translated it. I'm also going to go ahead and take the Unlucky path to get it out of the way...

Reference 48 posted:

Ignoring the weaker-looking of the two humans, you face the figure in clinking armour. He holds his ground, his sword poised ready to strike. Resolve your combat with the Knight in plate-armour:

ARMOURED KNIGHT SKILL 8 STAMINA 9

If you defeat him, turn to 392. (We haven't read this reference before.)

Reference 392 posted:

Your final blow sends the Knight flying across the chamber to land in a crumpled heap against one wall. You grunt in satisfaction. Your attention is drawn immediately back to the dead Hobbit lying by the fire and your mouth waters at the thought of its sweet flesh. But you have forgotten the final adventurer. The Wizard has now completed his spell. With a final incantation, he delivers his magic, directed straight at you through his two little fingers. You feel no more than a tingling sensation as his spell takes effect. "You are now under my control, foul creature." A smile spreads across the sorcerer's lips. "All my wishes are your commands. Gather my comrades and follow me!" You intend to step forward and slash him with your claws, but your muscles will not respond. Instead, you step over to the dead Knight, pick him up and carry him over your shoulder. You do the same with the Hobbit. The Wizard then turns and makes his way down the passage. You follow, carrying the rest of his party. And this will be your fate: to spend the rest of your life as a slave to your master, whose Control Creature spell has worked perfectly.

Bad end #1: had our free will taken by a Wizard before we even got it.

So how far do we backtrack, and what do we do from there?
  • From 1, Bring your foot down heavily on his neck to go to 185.
  • From 1, Try to talk to him to go to 364.
  • From 93b, Put these thoughts out of your mind and leave the area to go to 248.
  • From 93b, Try to hide the body to go to 218.
  • From 399a (with Piece of hide with coded message (337)), Roll 4, 5, or 6 to go to 148 (with Piece of hide with coded message (337)).
  • From 205 (with Piece of hide with coded message (337)), Defeat the Hobbit in more than three rounds to go to 86 (with Piece of hide with coded message (337)).
  • From 160 (with Piece of hide with coded message (337)), If you are Lucky to go to 292 (with Piece of hide with coded message (337)).
...okay, quick explanation of the format of this list. I've got a program I'm using to keep track of what we've done, and I've got some ambitions regarding that program. When you see something like '93b', that means that reference has been split into more than one reference internally; in this case, reference 93 is 'lose two STAMINA', which leads to reference 93a ('lose one STAMINA'), which leads to reference 93b ('make a choice freely'). Similarly, reference 399 is 'gain a Piece of hide with coded message (337)', which leads to reference 399a ('make a choice at random'). You don't have to worry about any of that, but if you'd rather I edit stuff like subreferences or inventory items out in future, I can do that.

FredMSloniker fucked around with this message at 17:32 on Apr 24, 2021

Ignatius M. Meen
May 26, 2011

Hello yes I heard there was a lovely trainwreck here and...



Well OBVIOUSLY we're not going to let some squishy wizard just zap our free will away. We're much smarter, luckier, and better looking than that!

BraveLittleToaster
May 5, 2019


We have the luck of the Irish Creature of Havoc. Very lucky indeed.

FredMSloniker
Jan 2, 2008

Why, yes, I do like Kirby games.


BraveLittleToaster posted:

We have the luck of the Irish Creature of Havoc. Very lucky indeed.

And you're lucky enough to get quoted.

Reference 292 posted:

Your reaction is immediate. The red-robed human is deep in thought and looks an easy target. You step forward and swipe viciously at him with your claws! He screams and falls to the ground, clutching at his face. You look down at the undefended wretch and prepare to deliver the death-blow. But at that moment, you feel a terrible sting in the back, which causes you to bellow and swing round. The remaining adventurer has lunged at you with his sword and succeeded in piercing the scales and flesh on your back! You must lose 2 STAMINA points for the wound, and then you can face the Knight in plate-armour:

ARMOURED KNIGHT    SKILL 8    STAMINA 9

If you defeat the Knight, turn to 446. (We haven't read this reference before.)

Incidentally, there are 460 numbered sections, called 'references' in a few places but largely nameless (hence 'turn to 446' instead of 'turn to reference 446' or 'turn to page 446'.)

Reference 446 posted:

You deliver the death-blow and the Knight drops to the ground. With the danger now over, your thoughts turn to food. The smell of the still-warm Hobbit reaches your nostrils and your mouth begins to water. You snatch the creature in one hand and eagerly sink your teeth into its sweet flesh. But this will merely provide a snack for you. Inside the armour, the Knight is an impossible meal, but the red-robed Wizard groaning on the floor may be a new taste for you to savour. You silence his miserable whimpers with a single deadly slash from your claws. For the tasty meal you may restore your STAMINA to its Initial level.

After you have eaten, you rummage through the adventurers' belongings. Their packs have little to interest you. The Hobbit carried a miniature sword and you find a rolled up piece of thin parchment in the Wizard's robe. All three humans carried odd-shaped lumps of a doughy substance - perhaps food, although it smells of nothing to you. They all also have small hide pouches containing round, flat objects of shiny metal. You cannot think what these may be for, so you toss them aside. You must now continue your journey. Passages lead off from the chamber to the north, east and west.

You decide to take the passageway to the west. You leave the chamber, your way ahead lit by the flickering fire. Eventually, the fire's light becomes too distant to help and you are groping your way in pitch-blackness. Suddenly a high-pitched twittering sound comes from above you, followed by others. You have disturbed a group of flying creatures, which are now squeaking in alarm as they dart about around you! You swipe at them blindly and catch one or two of them as they dive at you and scratch you with sharp claws. But your scales protect you from any serious harm and you are soon further along the passage, where these creatures evidently do not venture. The passage turns north. You follow it around the bend to the right and stop in front of a wooden door. There is no other way forward. Will you heave at the door with your shoulder or is there something else you wish to do?
  • Roll 1 or 2? Turn to 277. (We haven't read this reference before.)
  • Roll 3 - 6? Turn to 101. (We haven't read this reference before.)

I strongly suspect that "is there something else you wish to do" is a hint at another feature of Fighting Fantasy gamebooks: hidden choices. Unlike some gamebooks, which say things like "if you have found the password, turn to Page 47", in Fighting Fantasy gamebooks you'll be told something like "when you are asked for a password, add 20 to the number of the reference you're currently on and turn to that reference".

We don't have that information, however (should it exist), so another blind choice ahoy!

FredMSloniker fucked around with this message at 17:34 on Apr 24, 2021

BraveLittleToaster
May 5, 2019


Roll 3-6, turn to corresponding page.

I cannot imagine what failing to bust open the door could unleash upon you other than the indignity of trying again.

Ignatius M. Meen
May 26, 2011

Hello yes I heard there was a lovely trainwreck here and...



Gonna pull the other way, what's behind doors 1 & 2?

AtomikKrab
Jul 17, 2010

Keep on GOP rolling rolling rolling rolling.


1 and 2

FredMSloniker
Jan 2, 2008

Why, yes, I do like Kirby games.


Ignatius M. Meen posted:

Gonna pull the other way, what's behind doors 1 & 2?

This wasn't the winner, but I'm going to show it anyway.

Reference 277 posted:

You listen at the door and hear slithering noises followed by chomping sounds. You step back for a moment to consider what you have heard. You decide to turn back in the direction you have just come from. As you feel your way slowly along the pitch-black passage, you are again startled by the high-pitched twittering noise that you remember from your last encounter with the small flying creatures. You swat hopelessly at them and manage to hit a couple. But one swoops down and catches you painfully in the left eye! Fortunately your eye was blinking at the time and it has not been permanently damaged, but the bruise swelling up above your left cheek will keep the eye closed for some time. You must deduct 1 SKILL point. You may restore this SKILL point if at some time in the future you reach daylight. The attacks from the flying creatures continue and you decide to abandon this route and make your way back to the door. Finding it once more closed and barring your way, your jaw tightens and your lips curl back in an angry snarl. Both directions face you with danger and frustration! You step back to take a leap at the door with your fists. Turn to 101. (We haven't read this reference before.)

Roll a 1 or a 2? gently caress you, go in anyway, minus an eye!

BraveLittleToaster posted:

Roll 3-6, turn to corresponding page.

I cannot imagine what failing to bust open the door could unleash upon you other than the indignity of trying again.

There's a section in one of the Lone Wolf gamebooks where you enter combat with a door - just an ordinary, sturdy door - and any Endurance you lose represents how much you got beat up trying to force it open. It is entirely possible for a psychic ninja swordmaster to die from being locked in a room and beating himself to death.

Reference 101 posted:

The door cracks under the force of your blow. A hole appears and you rip the timbers away until it is large enough for you to pass through. Torches are mounted on the wall of the room inside and there are two doors, one to the east and one to the west. There is no furniture to speak of, but some remains - perhaps of a table and chair - litter the floor among a thin covering of dirty straw. The wood has been broken in what appears to have been a furious battle, the result of which lies before you.

In the centre of the room is a familiar sight. Casting your mind back to the battle you have just won, you recognize the figure of an armoured Knight lying face down in the straw. His face is hidden under an elegant helmet decorated with wings coming from above each ear. A dark-bladed sword has entered his body through a gap in his armour between his arm and shoulder. Lying next to the Knight are three other figures. One is similar in stature, but wears a tough leather tunic and helmet. A bloody stain around his belly indicates how this adventurer came to grief. The other two figures are not so familiar. They are shorter than the others, and are dressed in armour of scaly brown hide. They have gnarled, pug-nosed faces with vicious teeth set in their lower jaws. All four bodies are long dead.

You step forward to get a better look. Suddenly you hear a chomping sound coming from somewhere in the room - in fact several places - but you cannot see anything which might make such a noise. Your eyes pass over the adventurer in leather armour and you suddenly freeze: while you are watching, a chunk of flesh disappears from his thigh! You watch incredulously for a few moments more. Not only does more flesh disappear from the adventurer's leg, but you also notice the body of one of the pug-nosed creatures twitch as its forearm suddenly loses a fleshy lump! This scene is worrying and you must decide what to do next. Roll one die:
  • Roll 1-3 and investigate the bodies further? Turn to 234. (We haven't read this reference before.)
  • Roll 4-6 and head quickly for the door to the east? Turn to 168. (We haven't read this reference before.)

Well, at least it's not a blind random choice...

FredMSloniker fucked around with this message at 17:35 on Apr 24, 2021

BraveLittleToaster
May 5, 2019


FredMSloniker posted:

There's a section in one of the Lone Wolf gamebooks where you enter combat with a door - just an ordinary, sturdy door - and any Endurance you lose represents how much you got beat up trying to force it open. It is entirely possible for a psychic ninja swordmaster to die from being locked in a room and beating himself to death.
Well, that's one way to go out. It seems on brand for most gamebooks, honestly.

Investigate the bodies. As well as whatever's finding them so delicious.

Ignatius M. Meen
May 26, 2011

Hello yes I heard there was a lovely trainwreck here and...



Let's skedaddle east before whatever's having dinner decides they need another entree.

FredMSloniker
Jan 2, 2008

Why, yes, I do like Kirby games.


Ignatius M. Meen posted:

Let's skedaddle east before whatever's having dinner decides they need another entree.

Reference 168 posted:

You make your way cautiously towards the door, horrified by the sight of the bodies slowly disappearing. As you step across one of the pug-nosed creatures, your foot catches something in the air. A screeching noise from somewhere is followed by a yelp of pain from you, as sharp teeth clamp on to your foot! Lose 2 STAMINA points. The shock causes you to tumble over and this frees your foot. But as you lift yourself up, something is happening in the room. Three shapes are materializing in front of you. Turn to 447. (We haven't read this reference before.)

Reference 447 posted:

Your eyes widen as three scrawny creatures form before you. They are thin and angular and move in quick, jerky motions. Although their bodies are covered in a scraggy dark fur, their bony faces are bald, with tiny eyes. In the centre of each face is an oversized, protruding mouth, rimmed with sharp teeth. These vicious little Flesh-Feeders live on carrion. While feeding they make themselves invisible to avoid being caught unawares. But in between meals they are both visible and quick-tempered.



Reference 447 posted:

They now face you, furious that their meals have been interrupted, and you must battle with the creatures. They attack together:


                     SKILL  STAMINA
First FLESH-FEEDER     6       6
Second FLESH-FEEDER    6       7
Third FLESH-FEEDER     6       6


If you defeat them, turn to 89. (We haven't read this reference before.)

Flesh-Feeders go squish!

Reference 89 posted:

You rest for a few moments to catch your breath and then you survey the room. Your curiosity overcomes you, and you begin to investigate the seven bodies in the room. The pug-faced Orcs are dirty and smelly. You try a mouthful of flesh, but spit it out in disgust. Around their waists they carry small bags which, when ripped open, send a shower of small bones flying across the room. The two adventurers are not much more interesting. Similar pouches contain those round pieces of shiny metal which you came across before. They scatter on the floor and you ignore them. The pack on the back of the adventurer in the winged helmet is decorated and attracts your attention. One of the straps breaks as you rip it off his back and grope clumsily inside; you feel something solid. As you fumble angrily with the rucksack, a hard wooden casket drops to the ground and falls open! Inside is a clear smooth flask which contains swirling purple gas. Your curiosity is captured and your huge clawed hand tries to grasp the delicate flask. But this turns out to be hopeless. Eventually, you pick up the casket and drop it on the ground. As luck would have it, the flask jumps in its cradle and lands in such a way that the stopper flips out of the flask! The purple gas within swirls tempestuously and its vapours seep slowly from the neck of the flask. Turn to 382. (We haven't read this reference before.)

Reference 382 posted:

The gas drifts from the flask, but rather than spreading out, it pulls itself together into a purple cloud and billows up before you. You watch open-mouthed as a shape begins to form in the cloud, and eventually turns into a face, which stares deep into your eyes. The face is human-like, but thin and with jagged features. The pupils of its eyes are not round, but are instead serpent-like. Its thin-lipped mouth opens and speaks: "I am released from my rest. Foul creature, what do you know of the forces with which you tamper? But nonetheless my purpose is ordained. I bestow on you the power of reason. From now on you are in control of your own destiny. And now may I return to my peaceful rest until once more the heavens take their positions."

Your anger mounts and you swipe at the cloud. But your hand passes right through the gas without even disturbing it. The mysterious face blinks slowly and the colour of the cloud flashes momentarily from purple to white, and back to purple again. Then the face disappears and the cloud is sucked down back into its flask. Once safely inside the flask, the stopper replaces itself in the neck and the bottle settles into its cradle in the wooden casket. An instant later, the casket and its contents have faded to nothing!

You decide you have had enough of this room, but you may add 2 LUCK points for your find. Will you:
  • Leave through the door to the east? Turn to 33. (We haven't read this reference before.)
  • Leave through the door to the west? Turn to 51. (We haven't read this reference before.)

...hm. We aren't being asked to roll all of a sudden.

FredMSloniker fucked around with this message at 21:19 on Apr 25, 2021

BraveLittleToaster
May 5, 2019


Take the door on the east, get bothered the least.

habituallyred
Feb 6, 2015


(West)

Ignatius M. Meen
May 26, 2011

Hello yes I heard there was a lovely trainwreck here and...



This book is shaping up to be quite rude. Gonna be interesting once we hit a dead end figuring out which of the many seemingly forced choices actually branch.

BraveLittleToaster posted:

Take the door on the east, get bothered the least.

MaskedHuzzah
Mar 26, 2009

Come now! Look me in the eye and tell me - isn't this the face of a guy you can trust?

Lipstick Apathy

Finally a chance to use again! So West to Page 51

FredMSloniker
Jan 2, 2008

Why, yes, I do like Kirby games.



Man, I remember the days of . Back when I used like it was going out of style.

Reference 51 posted:

You leave the room along a passageway which runs west, your thoughts still dwelling on the mysterious smoke creature. After a short time, you find that the passage is bending this way and that through the rocky earth. But your progress is aided by the strange blue gemstones which are set into the roof of the passage. As you progress, glowstones ahead of you light up and bathe the area in an eerie blue light. When you look behind, you can see that they magically turn themselves off. Suddenly a distant echo reaches your ears and you stop dead in your tracks. Again you hear the sound - and it is coming closer! Footsteps and muffled voices are heading towards you. You are fortunate in having the advantage that your own footsteps are virtually silent, so you continue ahead, ready for a fight with anything that may come along. You approach a bend...

A shrill scream pierces the air and for an instant you are not sure whether it came from your own throat or that of the terrified adventurer with whom you suddenly found yourself nose to nose, when you turned the bend! But you recover quickly and slash furiously at the hapless human, who is still trying to compose himself after his fright. You catch him across the skimpy leather armour he wears on his chest, and send him crashing into the rocky wall where he loses his grip on the sword he is carrying. His two companions are close behind, so you must finish off the Strongarm without delay:

STRONGARM    SKILL 7    STAMINA 8

If you defeat the warrior, turn to 320. (We haven't read this reference before.)

Reference 320 posted:

As their leader falls, the other two adventurers rush to attack. One is a female warrior and the other is a thief. Both are carrying shields and both attack you at the same time:

         SKILL  STAMINA
WARRIOR    7       7
THIEF      8       6

If you defeat both of them, turn to 281. (We haven't read this reference before.)

Reference 281 posted:

You poke around the bodies of the three dead ruffians. Something shining on the wrist of the third adventurer catches your attention. Clumsily you rip at the clothing of all three, eventually exposing three objects of interest. The leading adventurer wore, around his neck, a pendant made of a dull, dark metal on a leather thong. The third adventurer wore two wrist bracelets of a shining yellow metal. The other carried a pouch containing 12 small flat discs of a shiny metal. Which of these is of the most interest to you:
  • The dull metal pendant? Turn to 306. (We haven't read this reference before.)
  • The pouch containing the discs? Turn to 412. (We haven't read this reference before.)
  • The two wrist bracelets? Turn to 259. (We haven't read this reference before.)

FredMSloniker fucked around with this message at 17:36 on Apr 24, 2021

FredMSloniker
Jan 2, 2008

Why, yes, I do like Kirby games.


Incidentally, I'm implementing a policy change. When we die or get stuck, I'll rewind to the earliest opportunity to get somewhere new rather than asking how far you want to rewind. I'm concerned that you might get lucky and miss some of the carnage.

Ignatius M. Meen
May 26, 2011

Hello yes I heard there was a lovely trainwreck here and...



FredMSloniker posted:

Incidentally, I'm implementing a policy change. When we die or get stuck, I'll rewind to the earliest opportunity to get somewhere new rather than asking how far you want to rewind. I'm concerned that you might get lucky and miss some of the carnage.

I approve of this.

Wear the pendant. Surely nothing can go wrong with this!

Maigius
Jun 29, 2013




Let's check out The two wrist bracelets! I like the way you're handling suggestions on this adventure.

bbcisdabomb
Jan 14, 2008

SHEESH


See if we can throw the metal discs at people, that sounds like fun.

BraveLittleToaster
May 5, 2019


Yoink the discs.

FredMSloniker
Jan 2, 2008

Why, yes, I do like Kirby games.


Maigius posted:

Let's check out The two wrist bracelets! I like the way you're handling suggestions on this adventure.

Thank you! I've used the raffle format in previous LPs. I feel it encourages people to pick what they want, not what they think will win.

Reference 259 posted:

You wrench the bracelets from the wrists of your foe. They make a tinny clinking sound as you turn them over in your hand and you admire the intricate carvings which decorate them. Even in the meagre light of the glowstones, they shine in an alluring way. You can make them wide enough to fit around your own wrists, and when you have put them on, you proudly hold them up before you and turn them this way and that. You may discover during your travels that these bracelets have a special ability, which will be revealed to you later. Add 1 LUCK point for your find. Now turn to 115. (We haven't read this reference before.)

In case you're wondering, the reason you keep seeing "We haven't read this reference before" is that the program I wrote to keep track of what we've done so far produces one of four messages for each choice we're given:
  • "We haven't read this reference before." We'll be seeing a lot of that, given there are 460 references.
  • "We've read this reference, but not in this state." Something about our situation is different from any other time we've read this reference: different inventory, status ailments, what have you. So we may be able to do something different by going that way.
  • "We've been here on a previous run." We've not only read that reference, but read it in our current state. When this comes up, I'll check if we can get anywhere new from there and add a note to that effect.
  • "We've been here this run." This is a sign that we've gone in a circle. There are many circles in the book, some of which can be escaped, at least one of which cannot. We're not allowed to choose these options; when we get into a situation where we have no options we can choose, it counts as a softlock, and we rewind.

Reference 115 posted:

Before you finally leave the adventurers, you may decide to feed on them. If you do, you gain 4 STAMINA points. Then you continue. All is silent as you walk carefully along the passage. Eventually, your ears pick up the sound of running water, and the air becomes moist and cool. The sensation would be quite refreshing if it were not for an unpleasant smell, which gets stronger as the sound of the water becomes louder. Soon you find yourself on a ledge in the face of a rocky cliff. Looking out, you can see you are high over a vast cavern through which a river flows. Leading down from your ledge into the centre of the cavern is a flight of rough-cut stairs. This precarious staircase spans the river and is the only way onwards, but the thought of descending the stairs is not one which fills you with enthusiasm. The narrow steps have been made for human-sized feet and your large pads will make your descent awkward. The smell, which was unpleasant before, is now horrendous and seems to be coming from the river itself. Its waters are murky brown and the smell of excrement and decay is overpowering. Nevertheless, your only way on is downwards, so down you must go. Test your Luck.
  • If you are Lucky, turn to 166. (We haven't read this reference before.)
  • If you are Unlucky, turn to 71. (We haven't read this reference before.)

Let's stick our metaphorical finger in the reference and see what happens if we're Unlucky, shall we?

Reference 71 posted:

You try to keep your balance as you descend the narrow stairs, but they are damp and slippery. At one point you slip and totter perilously near the edge before regaining your balance and continuing down. But six steps later, you lose your balance once again, and this time you are not lucky enough to regain it. You plunge over the edge of the staircase and down, down into the filthy depths of the Bilgewater River below. The impact is enough to knock you senseless. And, unable to fight against the current, you are swept downstream to oblivion.

Death #1: up poo poo Creek without a paddle.

But that's not how it happened.

Reference 166 posted:

The descent is dangerous and several times you lose your footing and stumble on the slippery steps. But your luck holds out and you finally arrive at the foot of the staircase. The stench of the river is especially foul to your sensitive nostrils and your eyes search desperately for a way out of the cavern. You discover two openings in the rock-face ahead of you. One leads to the west and the other to the north. Will you:
  • Continue north? Turn to 358. (We haven't read this reference before.)
  • Turn west? Turn to 77. (We haven't read this reference before.)

FredMSloniker fucked around with this message at 17:38 on Apr 24, 2021

BraveLittleToaster
May 5, 2019


Take the northern passage.

Maigius
Jun 29, 2013




Let's go west, hopefully away from the river

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FredMSloniker
Jan 2, 2008

Why, yes, I do like Kirby games.


BraveLittleToaster posted:

Take the northern passage.

Reference 358 posted:

A passage leads into the opening into the rock-face, and you follow it. But you find that, as you travel north, the light fades rapidly. There are no glowstones in this passage and you must progress carefully, steadying yourself by running your hands along both walls. The ground underfoot is rocky and several times you stub your toes painfully on protruding stones. Later, you can no longer touch both walls at once. Although you are unable to see anything, you sense that you are entering a large chamber. Turn to 257.

I'm gonna stop putting in the 'we've never been here before' stuff. I've changed how that output works anyway.

Reference 257 posted:

You cannot see a thing. Your feet shuffle noisily through the straw which covers the floor, as you grope around the walls for a way out. If this cavern is the lair of another creature, then you may well be walking straight towards it! But you hear no sounds other than your own and eventually you reach a hole in the rock, which is large enough for you to walk through and leads to a passageway. You continue slowly along the passage, still groping your way, but you stop when a blue light flicks on in front of you. The welcome hue of a glowstone makes you blink and turn away until your eyes become accustomed to the light. When you are finally able to take in your surroundings, you find that you are at a junction where you may either:
  • Turn east. Turn to 61.
  • Turn west. Turn to 309.

FredMSloniker fucked around with this message at 17:38 on Apr 24, 2021

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