The† †Eamon† Adventurerís† Guild
Yet another online update:
I've seen a lot of negative traffic about A2-Delphi that is just flatly untrue. I've read accusations and descriptions that don't even come close to what I observed from the sidelines. Sometimes people's roots and loyalties color their impressions, and this appears to be the case here. (Let me point out that my roots and loyalties were with Genie, and it has taken me a very long time to come around to deciding that A2-Delphi should be the Apple II user's home community.) In some cases, I suspect that certain people don't like being a smaller frog in the A2-Delphi pond when they are used to being the movers-and-shakers elsewhere.
Genie is down to the final hard core of old-timers who are resolved to "stay until the lights go out," which is likely to happen some time next year. CompuServe's APPUSER will be closed very soon when text-only access is discontinued.
The Apple II Usenet newsgroups such as comp.sys.apple2 remain, as ever, an excellent place to commune with emotionally troubled and rude people and get lots of opinion masquerading as fact.
Here is my take on the Apple II
online: first, you must have graphical WWW capability. Join
Note that there are a couple of corrections from past lists:
†† index.shtml (also emulators)
ftp://ftp.gmd.de/if-archive/games/appleII/eamon/guild/ (also emulators in ftp.gmd.de/emulators/)
The EAG is seeing more and more of its membership shifting to other computers and using Apple II emulators for Eamon. This is a pretty good way to go if you don't have space for two computers. You can find Apple II emulators on the two sites noted above. And I must add that the Mac-based GS emulator "Bernie to the Rescue" is said to be even better than a real GS!
EAMON REVIEW UPDATE:
Well it finally happened. This issue has the final Eamon reviews. All 246 of them have been done now. I've identified about 10 Eamons that weren't properly reviewed in the old NEUC newsletter and deserve new reviews. Tentatively, after the reviews run out, I will do two or three Walk-throughs in each issue. I am open to suggestions for future newsletter content.
Please let me know if there is any article or feature you would like me to do, or want to do yourself.
Membership/subscription fee for 4 issues:
US-Canada: $7.00; foreign:
This newsletter is published 4 times per year, in March, June, September, and December
Copyright 1998† All rights reserved.† Any part of this newsletter may be reproduced
without permission if source credit is given to the Eamon Adventurer's Guild,
This newsletter was composed in its entirety using Appleworks 4.3 on an Apple IIgs computer. It was then transferred to a PC for printing on a Canon BJC-210 inkjet printer.
We are always looking for new material!† If you would like to publish your own letter or article in this newsletter, feel free to send one in.
If you would like to add your own Eamon adventure to the EAG list, send it on a disk to the above address.† It will be assigned an Adventure number, and tested for bugs and other problems. †An informal critique and disk with bug corrections will be returned for your final comment, action and approval before release.
NEUC 'Adventurer's Log':
† Mar'84, May'84, Aug'84, Oct'84, Jan'85, Mar'85
† May'85, Aug'85, Oct'85, Jun'86, Jan'87, Oct'87
EAG back issues: †††††† †1988:†††† -††† Jun, Sep, Dec
†††††††††††††††††††† 1989,'90,'91,'92,'93: Mar, Jun, Sep, Dec
††††††††††††††††††††††††† 1994,'95,'96,'97: Mar, Jun, Sep, Dec
†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† 1998: Mar, Jun, Sep
Price: EAG members: †† $1.00 each
††††††††††††††† non-members: †† $2.00 each
Eamons are available online at various sites.† Some I can recommend are Genie, ftp.gmd.de, ground.ecn.uiowa.edu, and http://www.ecnet.net/ users/mumbv/pages/eamon/index.shtml
EAG EAMON DISK OFFER
EAG members can obtain the complete Eamon set from the EAG. This contains both the DOS 3.3 and 80-col. ProDOS Eamon collections archived to 3.5 disks.† These are ShrinkIt archives.† To access the ProDOS titles, you need one 3.5 drive. The DOS 3.3 titles require both 3.5 and 5.25 drives.
The EAG members' price for the entire set is $25.00.† To take advantage of this offer:
1) This offer requires that you supply the disks. You must include 19 DD 3.5 floppies with your payment. NOTE that these MUST be DD disks.† My drives cannot read nor write to HD disks!
2) You must use a shipping container that I can re-use to return the filled disks to you.
3) The $25.00 price includes formatting the floppies with ProDOS† If you format the disks for me, the price is $20.00. This reflects the time savings I get from not having to do the formatting. It doesn't matter what ProDOS volume name you use since they will be rewritten.
4) If any of the above requirements are not met, the disks will be returned unfilled, and the shipping cost will be deducted from your refund.
5) Both versions of 8-bit ShrinkIt and basic instructions are included with the set.
Purchase of the set puts you on a mailing list that automatically gets free updates once or twice per year.
A Walk-Through of Eamon #127
"The Hunt for the Ring"
This Eamon was chosen for a walk-through because it includes several fairly obscure puzzles, and† also has the potential to be pretty deadly.
Not much to say in the way of hints that wasn't said in the review. Pay very close attention to the information that people give you. Be on the lookout for embedded artifacts. Don't explore the cave without a light source in hand.† If you are familiar with the LOTR story, you may do better, as Sam uses many of the events therein.
Let's get started!
First, let's do an inventory. Yep, you have the magic ring Narya that Gandalf gave you. (You can wear the various magic rings, but they are greater than you and it's generally a bad idea to do so.)
Go North, then West and meet Cirdan. GIVE Narya to Cirdan, and pay attention to his advice.
Go East twice, then South into Buckland where you meet your friend, Merry. From here, go East to avoid the road as Cirdan advised. Go East twice more, and kill Old Man Willow.
Continue East, then go North and meet Tom Bombadil. (Tom's advice will only come into play if you go into the fog and become a prisoner of the barrow-wight. This is an interesting side event, but it is not necessary to the Quest and involves unnecessary combat.)
Go North, then East twice, then South, then East into Bree. Go North into the Prancing Pony and meet Strider, another companion.
Go South, then East, and kill the midges. Continue East, then North to again avoid the road. Go East, then South to avoid the Trollshaws (another interesting side-event.) Go East three times.
The Nazgul! If you haven't read the books, the Nazgul are very bad customers indeed, and there is no way you can defeat them. FLEE!
Aha. A magical event saves you.
Perhaps we are nearing Rivendell, our first goal. Go East. Nothing here, but
Go East twice more and meet Elrond. Say GITHONEIL A ELBERETH, as Cirdan instructed, and Elrond will advise you. Get the miruvor. (Another note: The miruvor doesn't heal all that much, and it only works twice. You will likely need to cheat once or twice to recover your health or healing ability to survive. Here's a short refresher on the method: after halting with a control-C, you can restore your health and beef up your HEAL spell by typing this: MD%(0,13)=0:S2%(2)=2000:POKE51,0 :GOTO100.
We're through here for now. Go West three times, then South twice. Kill the Crebain. Continue South twice more and kill the Dunlandings. Then South twice yet more, then East, and kill the Uruks.
Here is Isengard. If you've read the books, you know that this is the entrance to Orthanc, Saruman's lair. Saruman covets the Ring and may know or have something useful. Go North and kill Ugluk, then Up twice and kill Wormtongue. LOOK around, and go Up again. Saruman! Kill him.
This room is just loaded with Stuff. LOOK around. GET the key. EXAMINE the crate and closet. OPEN the crate. OPEN the closet. EXAMINE the shelves and cushion. GET ALL.
We're done here. Go Down three times, then South to leave. Go East into the Gap of Rohan, and kill the Orcs. Go East twice more, then South twice to Minas Tirith. Go West, then Up and meet Denethor.
Denethor is suspicious of you. You'll have to prove yourself to him. Hmm. You found a valuable heirloom of the men of old in Orthanc; could that do it? GIVE Elendilmir to Denethor. He rewards you with access to their records. Youíll want to EXAMINE BOOKS. EXAMINE SCROLL. READ SCROLL. EXAMINE MANUSCRIPT. READ MANUSCRIPT. GET ALL, for future reference if you need it. Now we're done here. Leave by going Down twice, then East.
Now, what?† Well, let's look at what we learned from the visit to the archives: not much, except the seemingly useless factoid that Hobbits will respond to a call for a drink. That was a lot of bother for so little information. Is it a clue to our next step? We'll save you some time here and tell you that the call achieves nothing in Hobbiton. Let's try to find another land of the Hobbits. Go North twice, then West, then North twice into Fangorn (the Ent will not attack you.) Go East, then North four times into the Gladden Fields.
Hey, there are burrows here. The manuscript said that Hobbits lived in burrows. Is this the spot we're looking for? Say HO! HO! HO! TO THE BOTTLE I GO! Weagol appears! GIVE the pipeweed to Weagol. (There is a screen pause in the text that follows, but the YOU SEE text will shoot the second screen off the top, so be ready with the control-S key and halt it after a half-dozen lines so you can read it first.) She rewards you with reminiscences, a coat, and a torch. GET ALL.
So, what good were those reminiscences? We need to put some pieces together here. Look at where you are: the Gladden Fields. You know that the Ring was captured in the Gladden Fields shortly before it became lost. Weagol went on about this Gollum character who found some sort of "precious" item. Let's go find Gollum!
Go West, then North twice, then Up and kill the Goblins. Go West, then North into the cave. A dead end? LOOK. A secret passage!
Go North and kill the Orcs. LOOK and find another secret passage. Go West, then North.
It's dark, and you've lost your companions! LIGHT your torch, then go Down.
You meet Gollum. Agree to the riddle contest (type Y with no return.) The answer to the riddle is FISH. Be careful with your typing, you only get one chance!
Gollum "leaves" you for a moment. While he's "gone," LOOK around.
What's this? A small ring. GET it and WEAR it.
Gollum rushes past you as if you are invisible! (You are invisible. This small, nondescript trinket is the Great Ring you are seeking.)
He thinks you've gone for the exit. Follow him by going South.
Remove the Ring. It is far more powerful than you and will turn you to Evil if you leave it on.
We are nearly done. All we need to do now is deliver the Ring to Elrond.
Go East, South twice, East, Down, South eight times, West three times, North six times, and East three times.
Give the Ring to Elrond. Your Quest is complete!
#9† Assault on the Clone Master††††† by Donald Brown
Reviewed by Tom Zuchowski
MAIN PGM Version: 4
Extra Commands: DESTROY
Deleted Commands: None
Special Features: Wandering guards
Playing Time: 20 min.
Reviewer Rating: 4.0†† †††††† Average Rating: 3.8/4
Description: "You were walking away from the Main Hall when you felt that unpleasant wrench in your stomach again. You are in another universe. This time, you have your normal body and weapons. You just need to find your way back.
"You came upon a group of people who know of your plight. They are rebels, and can return you to your world. They will show you the way, if you will only first go with some of their men on a raid in the fortress of the dreaded Clone Master.
When they inform you that they will kill you if you don't go along, you agree. You must do two things--kill the Clone Master and destroy the device that keeps him in power--the Clonatorium!"
Comment: This is typical Don Brown fare: simple map, no puzzles, combat geared for Marcos' weapons, and a light, humorous air. The map itself couldn't be simpler; it is one long straight corridor with three sets of short side passages to either side. There is one secret passage.
The gimmick that shines in this Eamon is the "wandering monsters." Typically, Eamon authors jump monsters to random rooms, and if one happens to hit your location, you see him "enter" the room. But Don figured out how to actually move the monsters about from one room to the next. From the player's point of view, this looks no different from the "random jump" method, but it is elegantly done and deserves a look from any Eamon author who wants to do something similar.
Don did something with the monsters that may look cheap and lazy, but is actually a pretty good joke. There are only four basic characters here: guard, miner, harem girl, and servant. If memory serves, there are 5 miners, 3 harem girls, 7 servants, and 20 guards, and they all have names like GUARD18. If you remember that they are all clones of one another, then GUARD18 is a perfectly reasonable name!
I enjoyed the play. Two things knocked the rating down: low content, and a full screen of companions shooting the room descriptions off the top of the screen before I could read them.
This is basically a Hack'n'slash combat scenario with no mental effort required. Difficulty will run from perhaps (2) for a modern pumped-up character, to (6) for a character using Main Hall weapons. This Eamon is suitable for the young Eamonaut.
#224 Prisoner of Darkness †† ††††††by Phil Schulz
Reviewed by Adam Myrow
Main pgm version: 7.0
Extra commands: REST, CLIMB
Deleted commands: None
Special features: None
Playing time: 2 hours and up
Reviewer Rating: 6††††† †††††† Average Rating: 6.5/2
Description: "Once again, you find yourself captured in a far away castle. So find your way out and kill your enemy.
"You have come into possession of an ancient platinum coin. You know you must return it to the Free Adventurer's Guild as they will know what to do with it."
Comment: Above is the entire introduction you get for this adventure. If it sounds like an easy quest, let me assure you that it is not! In fact, this is a surprisingly difficult Eamon. There is quite a variety of monsters in this one. If you're tired of games with monsters named GUARD1, GUARD2, and GUARD3, you'll appreciate the trouble Phil went to in order to come up with some unique monsters.† There is a lint monster, coal elemental, and my favorite, the horned cave-dwelling thing.
The game has a number of small puzzles, mostly consisting of finding embedded artifacts that are sometimes quite obscure. There is also a spot where you are seemingly stopped by a fire, a point where you must make a magic potion, and a series of small favors you must do for other monsters. You'll want to read each and every room description carefully and examine anything that is mentioned.
With all the special effects and stuff, you may wonder why I don't give a higher rating. There are two reasons. First, the Eamon really has no plot. While the player knows that they are to escape and return a coin, there is no explanation as to why. The game is somewhat haphazard. Both the monsters and puzzles seem to have been thrown in randomly. Second, the game has some annoying bugs that make it a bit hard to play.
The first reason was the main one that made me downrate this Eamon. It just left too many loose ends.† For example, when you escape and return the coin, you are given a large reward, but no reason is given as to why the coin is so incredibly important. Also, you never find out who captured you nor why. I just would have liked to see a bit more plot development.
Overall, I would call this Eamon a decent game. It's definitely not for the impatient nor inexperienced. The combat can be tough and some of the artifacts are extremely well-hidden. If you don't mind the lack of a plot, then this would be a good challenge. It gets a difficulty rating of 8 from me.
Now for some hints and discussion. First, there is something you need in the torture room. Also, the ball of lint hidden in a bedroom is important. Next, make sure you have at least 2000 gold pieces in hand when you start, otherwise, you can't complete the game. You end up getting spit back to a previous room and told that you need more gold. However, there doesn't seem to be a way to get more. Lastly, you are not supposed to be able to survive the attack by the 8 mine monsters. The way the author wrote things, however, you are likely to kill them if you use a decent character. This causes the programming to get flaky, so be sure to let them kill you. This is a rather odd thing, as the author was quite forgiving of errors near the beginning of the game.† It appears as if he lapsed off in the end. With this advice and some thought, you should be able to complete the game.
#232 Jewel of Yara††††††††††††† †† by Hoyle Purvis
Reviewed by Tom Zuchowski
MAIN PGM Version: 7
Extra Commands: TALK
Deleted Commands: None
Special Features: None
Playing Time: 1 hour
Reviewer Rating: 6.0
Description: "While on a Quest to free the people of Arenjun from an evil priest named Yara, you were beset in your sleep by a band of thieves. Chained and beaten, you endured several days of misery when you saw your chance.
"You smashed the first guard and grabbed your armor, which lay near. However, the alarm had been sounded. Wolf-dogs trained to track and kill had been unleashed. You have no choice but to run!
"Alone and unarmed, the adventure begins."
Comment: While this is a pretty large Eamon, it is laid out in four sections with connecting roads, and I had no trouble playing it without a map. Two of the sections really have nothing to do with the Quest, but they serve well to flesh out the map and story. Actually, there is quite a bit of stuff in the database that serves no purpose. This was Hoyle's last Eamon, and I suspect that he lost interest and wound it up quickly.
This Eamon does some pretty neat stuff and is well-conceived and well-written. I really liked the first section for its tense pace. However, the adventure winds up quite abruptly, in stark and unwelcome contrast to the earlier portions of the foray. More evidence that Hoyle decided to wrap it up not fully finished.
Here are a few hints: first, pay attention to what you learn in the descriptions. If it says, for one example, that there are too many guards, believe it. And if you aren't making progress in Arenjun, maybe passing some time in the tavern will bring forth an opportunity (but explore the city first.)
Difficulty of (5) if you take the above advice.
#233 The Domain of Zenoqq by Robert Claney
Reviewed by Tom Zuchowski
MAIN PGM Version: 4 (heavily modified!)
Extra Commands:FREE, UNLOCK, modified WAVE
Deleted Commands: None
Special Features: 80-column ONLY, ProDOS ONLY,
†on-the-fly text case conversion
Playing Time: 1-3 hours
Reviewer Rating: 4.0
Description: An evil wizard named Zenoqq has taken control of the kingdom, and made a prisoner of the previous ruler, the good wizard Maryex.
You are hired to destroy Zenoqq and rescue Maryex. You are given a magic staff that can turn foe into friend, and promised a reward for a successful Quest. You are also intrigued by rumor that Zenoqq's slayer will find a powerful magic weapon.
Comment: Bob includes some Author's Notes that tell of this Eamon's history and recent modification. In short, it is a very old version 4 Eamon that has been updated to modern ProDOS-Eamon standards. It requires ProDOS and 80-column display, and it does work on an 80-column-capable II+. The most remarkable thing you will notice while playing is that all commands are automatically converted into nice-looking lower case. Like any Eamon, you must type in all-caps, but when you type "ATTACK MONSTER", "Attack Monster" appears on the screen. Very nice.
But while Bob did a wonderful job with that feature and regular ProDOS-Eamon capabilities, he neglected to fully uprate the command parser to version 6. Thus, while you can abbreviate the command, the object name must be fully typed. Also, he added a very crude screen-pause line counter that throws in a "Hit any key to continue" after every 20 lines or so. This screen pause appeared every one to three commands and drove me nuts with its pseudo-random appearance.
A couple of things really knocked down its rating for me. The first is a wealth of spelling typos which are beyond easy repair, because Bob uses a special machine-language method for loading the descriptions that is not compatible with the Dungeon Editor.
The second problem is that the descriptions make the dungeon feel uninteresting with a studied effort to sound sarcastic and jaded. Here's a typical example: "Guess what! You're in a north/south corridor, and you can even go through a doorway to the east. Now, isn't that fascinating?"
The Wave command is a major enhancement over the normal WAVE/SMILE in that you have a magical staff that can turn foe into friend when you wave it. But while this is a nifty gizmo, it only works about three times, and it does not work on Zenoqq. You won't really need it to battle the typical enemy you encounter, but I suggest that you use it in encounters with multiple foes so that you will have more companions when you finally meet Zenoqq.† Zenoqq himself is a very tough customer who can kill you with about three hits, and I could not beat him without cheating to preserve my health.
The main mapping gimmick is an overuse of secret doors. I counted no fewer than 17 secret doors in 97 rooms of mapping. It's easy to get lost while backtracking old ground as the haphazard screen pauses readily eat movement commands when you miss them.
I am upping the difficulty rating to (7). You will need a good magic weapon, and even so may well have to cheat to restore the HEAL command and to survive Zenoqq.
Finally, even though this is not a great Eamon, it's well worth a play just to see and experience the good stuff it has.† One last comment: you are forced at the end to keep the Key of Zenoqq, but it's a 6D4 weapon, so that's not so bad.
"Gimme that ring, ya hairy-footed varmint! Gimme that ring or I'll blast ya!"