Definitely one of the best gamebook series ever released
Of course, this is merely one reviewer's opinion, but if Blood Sword even comes near to what was thought acceptable by the readers of these books, things were seriously amiss. But what makes me shudder with horror is the idea that if people accepted to be treated like this by a game book, they would also accept to be treated like this by a real GameMaster. Perhaps this book even corresponds to the play style of a substantial section of the roleplayers in 1987? That would really explain where something like the Abused Player Syndrome that Chris talks about comes from.
So, what is so horrific about this book? Well, first of all, it is almost never the case that you actually have any information on which you can base your choices. "Do you go left or right?" How should I know? There is nothing I can do to find out which is the good choice. But if you choose the wrong option, you're bound to meet a dreadful end.
Here are some choice events:
- You meet an assassin with a poisoned dagger. If he wounds you (quite a chance), you die immediately.
- You read a scroll and are transported to a magical place from which you cannot flee, where you have to face an opponent who is much stronger than you are. You can only escape by killing him.
- You find a black potion. If you ever decide to drink it, you die.
Was roleplaying really ever like this? I really hope it wasn't, and that Blood Sword is merely an abberation.