Fighting Fantasy is the title given to a series of interactive novels, also known as gamebooks, that were developed by Steve Jackson and Ian Livingstone. Fighting Fantasy Gamebooks are back! Who are Steve Jackson and Ian Livingstone? Steve Jackson and Ian Livingstone are veterans of the games industry having founded Games. Buy Steve Jackson's Sorcery! - The Complete Collection PC game key from Green Man Gaming Now. Official retailer and remember to sign in for our best price. An epic adventure through a land of. By Steve Jackson (1983), cover by Maggie Kneen, illustrated by John Blanche. The key to Sorcery! - the epic fantasy adventure series. If you have chosen to adopt the role of wizard in Sorcery! Spell Book is a must.
Cover of The Shamutanti Hills (1983).
Art by John Blanche.
|Published||1983 - 1985|
Sorcery!, originally titled Steve Jackson's Sorcery!, is a single-player four-part adventure gamebook series written by Steve Jackson and illustrated by John Blanche. Originally published by Penguin Books between 1983 and 1985, the titles are part of the Fighting Fantasy canon, but were not allocated numbers within the original 59-book series. Sorcery! was re-published by Wizard Books in 2003 and recreated as the Sorcery!video game series by Inkle.
The Sorcery! series was published by Penguin Books (and later by their Puffin Books imprint) as four individual titles, beginning in 1983 with The Shamutanti Hills, followed by Kharé: Cityport of Traps and The Seven Serpents in 1984, and The Crown of Kings in 1985.
Each title could be played as an individual adventure or as part of the overall story arc. The series was supported by the Sorcery! Spellbook, published in 1983, which was eventually incorporated as an appendix into the four titles in later printings. A boxed set titled Sorcery! was released, containing both The Shamutanti Hills and the spellbook. The series was reissued by Wizard Books in 2003.
Sorcery! features several mechanics not present in previous Fighting Fantasy gamebooks. The principal difference is the ability to choose between playing as a warrior or a wizard. As a wizard, the player is weaker in combat, but has access to 48 spells, with each appearing as a three-letter word that has to be memorised by the player. Examples include ZAP (creates a lightning bolt from the finger) and HOT (creates a fireball). When given the option to cast spells the player is presented with a small selection of these three-letter words to choose from; the player is encouraged to choose from these without consulting the spell listing. It is also possible to fail to cast at all, as false spell words are placed alongside correct choices. Many spells also require a certain item (e.g. GOB requires one or more goblin teeth). If the character does not have the necessary equipment then the spell fails. All spell choices, irrespective of the outcome, incur a Stamina penalty.
Warriors and wizards share the ability to call on the character's patron goddess, Libra, once each adventure. The goddess can perform a range of services, such as restoring lost Skill/Stamina/Luck points or curing a curse, or in specific locations, providing an automatic escape from that situation.
The series features strong continuity: it is possible for a reader to use the same character – complete with any upgraded abilities and equipment – through each of the titles, and also use hidden clues found in one title to assist with a situation in another. Each title also features dice images at the bottom of each page, making it possible for the player to randomly 'flick' through the pages for the equivalent of a dice roll.
'Your search for the legendary Crown of Kings takes you to the Shamutanti Hills. Alive with evil creatures, lawless wanderers and bloodthirsty monsters, the land is riddled with tricks and traps waiting for the unwary traveller. Will you be able to cross the hills safely and proceed to the second part of the adventure – or will you perish in the attempt?'
The story is set on the fictional Fighting Fantasy world of Titan, on the continent known as The Old World. A powerful artifact known as the Crown of Kings, which bestows magical powers of leadership upon its owner, has been stolen from the land of Analand by the cruel Archmage of Mampang Fortress. With the Crown, the Archmage will be able to gain leadership of the lawless and brutal region of Kakhabad and begin an invasion of surrounding kingdoms. The player takes on the role of the lone hero, referred to only as the Analander, who has been dispatched to retrieve the Crown, thereby averting the invasion and saving Analand from terrible disgrace. The quest itself is divided between the four titles in the series:
The Shamutanti Hills
- Details the player's attempt to navigate the hills and plains surrounding Analand while defeating various monsters and avoiding traps.
Kharé – Cityport of Traps
- Relates the player's attempt to pass through the city of Kharé and find the four lines of a spell required to open the Northern Gate and allow an exit from the city.
The Seven Serpents
- The player crosses the Baklands, a vast and dangerous wasteland, attempting to find and defeat seven magical serpents: servants of the Archmage who are travelling to warn their master of the Analander's approach.
The Crown of Kings
- The final adventure details the player’s attempt to find and penetrate Mampang Fortress – stronghold of the Archmage – and defeat the enemy before reclaiming the Crown of Kings.
In other media
Myriador pen-and-paper d20 modules
The first three gamebooks in the series were converted into 40-page d20 System multi-player role-playing adventures by Jamie Wallis. They were published by Myriador in 2003 and 2004 respectively, and reissued in pdf format by Greywood Publishing in 2009. The fourth and final installment was never released.
- d20 Fighting Fantasy 4 / Steve Jackson's Sorcery!: The Shamutanti Hills ISBN1904629032
- d20 Fighting Fantasy 6 / Steve Jackson's Sorcery!: Kharé - Cityport of Traps ISBN1904629059
- d20 Fighting Fantasy 8 / Steve Jackson's Sorcery!: The Seven Serpents ISBN1904629075
Inkle Studios video game
The gamebook series have been ported to computerized media as Steve Jackson's Sorcery! by Inkle. The first part was released for iOS in 2013, and by 2016 all four parts were available for iOS, Android, and Steam (on Mac and PC).
Arion Games pen-and-paper adventure book
The four gamebooks were converted into a RPG adventure book by Graham Bottley, for the Advanced Fighting Fantasy system. The book was titled Crown of Kings:The Sorcery! Campaign, and was published in 2012 by Arion Games. The book was credited to Jackson and Bottley. The book also reprinted Blanche's illustrations.
Pete Tamlyn reviewed Sorcery for Imagine magazine, and stated that 'Sorcery is actually a fine example of back-to-basics role-playing. I'd like to see more (preferably RPG-orientated) like it.'
Marcus L. Rowland reviewed Sorcery for White Dwarf #50, giving it an overall rating of 7 out of 10, and stated that 'I'm not sure how successful the book will be with the non-gaming public, but anyone wanting something to pass a few hours between games won't go far wrong with Sorcery.'
Steve Jackson's Sorcery - The Complete Collection Downloads
Marcus L. Rowland reviewed Kharé - Cityport of Traps for White Dwarf #54, giving it an overall rating of 8 out of 10 if used as a continuation of Sorcery (but only 6 of used as an independent adventure), and stated that 'I liked this book, but I think it is only at its best if the magic system is available and the reader is prepared to use it without cheating.'
- ^Sorcery! series at Demian's Gamebook Web Page
- ^Jackson, Steve. The Sorcery Spell Book, Penguin Books, 1984.
- ^'SFandFantasy.co.uk - Fighting Fantasy - d20 Role Playing Game Conversions'. Retrieved 10 August 2017.
- ^'Fighting Fantasy d20 - RPG Geek'. Retrieved 24 August 2014.
- ^'Crown of Kings (2012) - RPG Geek'. Retrieved 30 May 2020.
- ^Tamlyn, Pete (January 1984). 'Game Reviews'. Imagine (review). TSR Hobbies (UK), Ltd. (10): 43.
- ^Rowland, Marcus L. (February 1984). 'Open Box'. White Dwarf. Games Workshop (Issue 50): 12.
- ^Rowland, Marcus L. (June 1984). 'Open Box'. White Dwarf. Games Workshop (Issue 54): 22.
- Fighting Fantasy – the official website
- Scholastic Homepage – current publisher of the range
|Born||20 May 1951 (age 69)|
|Occupation||Fantasy author, entrepreneur, game designer, writer, game reviewer|
Steve Jackson (born 20 May 1951) is a British game designer, writer, game reviewer and co-founder of UK game publisher Games Workshop.
Steve Jackson began his career in games in 1974 as a freelance journalist with Games & Puzzles magazine. In early 1975, Jackson co-founded the company Games Workshop with school friends John Peake and Ian Livingstone.:43 They started publishing a monthly newsletter, Owl and Weasel, which was largely written by Jackson, and sent copies of the first issue to subscribers of Albion fanzine; Brian Blume, co-partner of American publisher TSR, received one of these copies and in return sent back a copy of TSR's new game Dungeons & Dragons. Jackson and Livingstone felt that this game was more imaginative than anything being produced in the UK at the time, and so worked out an arrangement with Blume for an exclusive deal to sell D&D in Europe.:43 In late 1975, Jackson and Livingstone organized their first convention, the first Games Day.:43 While selling game products directly out of their flat, their landlord kicked them out in the summer of 1976 after people kept showing up there looking for an actual store.:43 By 1978 the first Games Workshop store had opened, in London.
At a Games Day convention in 1980 Jackson and Livingstone met Geraldine Cooke, an editor at Penguin Books. They persuaded her to consider publication of a book about the role-playing hobby. This was originally intended to be an introductory guide, but the idea of an interactive gamebook seemed more appealing. After several months Cooke decided that this was viable and commissioned Jackson and Livingstone to develop it. In 1980, Jackson and Livingstone began to develop the concept of the Fighting Fantasy gamebook series, the first volume of which (The Warlock of Firetop Mountain) was published in 1982 by Puffin Books (a subsidiary imprint of Penguin).:46 Jackson and Livingstone would go on to individually write many volumes each, with further authors adding even more. Steve Jackson notably wrote Sorcery!, a four-part series utilizing the same system as Fighting Fantasy but where Fighting Fantasy mainly targeted children, Steve Jackson's Sorcery! was marketed to an older audience. Jackson and Livingstone attributed the gamebooks' popularity to their difficulty.
After the success of the Fighting Fantasy series, Jackson designed the first interactive telephone role-playing game, FIST, which was based loosely on the concepts of the gamebooks. Jackson and Livingstone sold off their stake in Games Workshop in 1991.:50 In the mid-1990s Jackson spent 2.5 years as a games journalist with the London Daily Telegraph. He then set up computer games developer Lionhead Studios with Peter Molyneux. Jackson left Lionhead in 2006 when Microsoft bought the company. He is an honorary professor at Brunel University in London, where he teaches the Digital Games Theory and Design MA.
He is often mistaken for the American game designer with the same name: Steve Jackson. The American Jackson wrote three books in the Fighting Fantasy series, which adds to the confusion, especially as these books were simply credited to 'Steve Jackson' without any acknowledgement that it was a different person.
- The Warlock of Firetop Mountain (1982) with Ian Livingstone, Puffin Books
- Sorcery! 1–4 (1983–85), Puffin Books
- The Citadel of Chaos (1983), Puffin Books
- Starship Traveller (1984), Puffin Books
- House of Hell (1984), Puffin Books
- Fighting Fantasy: The Introductory Role-playing Game (1984), Puffin Books
- Appointment with F.E.A.R. (1985), Puffin Books
- The Tasks of Tantalon (1985), Oxford University Press
- Creature of Havoc (1986), Puffin Books
- The Trolltooth Wars (1989), Puffin Books
Steve Jackson's Sorcery - The Complete Collection Download Free
- Lost Eden (1995), Virgin Interactive
- Circle of Blood (1996), Virgin Interactive
- Close Combat: Invasion – Normandy (2000), Strategic Simulations, Inc.
- Fighting Fantasy: The Warlock of Firetop Mountain (2001), Laughing Jackal
- The Movies (Premiere Edition) (2005), Activision
- Fighting Fantasy: The Warlock of Firetop Mountain (2009), Big Blue Bubble
- Sorcery! 1 – The Shamutanti Hills (2013), Inkle
- Sorcery! 2 – Kharé – Cityport of Traps (2013), Inkle
- Sorcery! 3 – The Seven Serpents (2015), Inkle
- Sorcery! 4 – The Crown Of Kings (2016), Inkle
- BattleCards – a card game first published in 1993 that features a unique scratch-and-slay system[clarification needed]
- Fantasy Interactive Scenarios by Telephone (F.I.S.T.) – a telephone-based single-player roleplaying game similar to Fighting Fantasy
- ^ abcJackson, Steve (2007). 'The Warlord'. In Lowder, James (ed.). Hobby Games: The 100 Best. Green Ronin Publishing. pp. 365–368. ISBN978-1-932442-96-0.
- ^Livingstone, Ian (April 1975). 'Editorial'. Owl and Weasel. Games Workshop (3): 2.
- ^ abcdefShannon Appelcline (2011). Designers & Dragons. Mongoose Publishing. ISBN978-1-907702-58-7.
- ^'The Gaming Dynasty That Began In A West London Flat'. Londonist. 4 January 2018. Retrieved 18 May 2020.
- ^McFerran, Damien (16 August 2013). 'You are the hero: A history of Fighting Fantasy'. Eurogamer. Retrieved 25 August 2014.
- ^ abPlant, Mike (6 June 2013). 'Interview: Steve Jackson, role-playing game titan'. The Register. Retrieved 25 August 2014.
- ^Capper, Andy. 'Steve Jackson & Ian Livingstone'. Vice. Archived from the original on 26 August 2014. Retrieved 25 August 2014.
- ^ abDredge, Stuart (23 January 2014). 'Steve Jackson talks F.I.S.T. – the first interactive telephone role playing game'. The Guardian. Retrieved 25 August 2014.
- ^'Frequently Asked Questions'. Steve Jackson Games. 29 March 2007. Retrieved 14 September 2007.
- ^'Steve Jackson – Biography and Public Warning'. Steve Jackson Games. 14 December 2010. Retrieved 6 November 2011.
- ^other than one subtle difference: a book written by either of the two co-founders is credited as 'by Steve Jackson' or 'by Ian Livingstone'. A book written by any other author is introduced as 'Steve Jackson and Ian Livingstone presents' with the author's name simply listed in the preliminaries.
Steve Jackson Sorcery Spell List
- Steve Jackson at MobyGames
- Steve Jackson interview on Yog Radio about Games Workshop and Fighting Fantasy, June 2010