I already enjoyed 'A shadow on the north' but felt it was a bit short due to the branching, but 'A flame in the north' is truly epic. I like how there seem to be (at least!) two entirely different approaches to succeed. It's a really cool mechanic that the first part is running on a timer, encouraging replay to optimize your moves and achieve as much as possible before the climactic battle.
I've just been wondering why several of the fights seem to be so hard with the enemies always evading my attacks. How is it determined if they evade? Is there anything that can be done to prevent them from doing that?
There are in fact three different routes to success, one of which is much shorter than the other two. The way some enemies evade your attacks is not part of the standard mechanism, it's defined on a case-by-case basis, presumably to introduce some variety in combat. Here's an example from the original (reference 125) :
GLAIVE THIEF STAMINA: 6 SKILL: 6
Special Condition: AGILITY: when you win a combat round, roll a dice. If 1 or 2 the thief dodges your sword, sustaining no STAMINA damage.
I've implemented these special conditions as closely as I could. There's nothing you can do about it in general, but what I would say is that this is a relatively easy gamebook for its size, and if a fight appears too difficult at first glance there is always a way to improve your chances.
jhaelen Fri Feb 20 10:42:14 2015
Thanks for the explanation - I guess I must have had some really bad luck with the dice rolling then :)
I've been following hints for a third solution but wasn't sure if it's actually achievable - good to know there's a way!
I've also had fun trying to hunt down the Crimson Hand - so far I managed to find and defeat four of them.
I'm not sure how difficult this gamebook is compared to others, but I like that it's generally very fair and the consequences of taking various actions always make sense. So, again my compliments to the author! My victory using the most obvious route was a close call indeed: In the end I had 1 stamina left...
I'm really looking forward to the conclusion of this trilogy.
P.S.: I think I found one error: In paragraph 255 you get to choose between using a hammer or a mace - the paragraphs for these two choices seem to be swapped.
It is possible to kill all five of the Crimson Hand.
There's a rough difficulty rating for each of the gamebooks here. It looks like A Flame In The North will either be 'fairly easy' or 'medium difficulty'.
Thanks for pointing out the error. In fact they aren't reversed, it's a mistake in the text at 555 which until I just corrected it said 'mace' when it should have said 'hammer'.
Claire Tue Mar 10 12:13:06 2015
Richard, thanks so much for a wonderful game. I've been hooked on it the last few days but not managed to crack it yet.
I understand there are a few ways to win.
At present I'm concentrating on reaching Lord Fenric's
I remember throwing a smoke ball to get past the guards outside previously, but can't remember now where I bought it. Maybe at a stall, but in what district? I've retraced my steps, but had no joy.
Any suggestions would be appreciated.
I've also purchased an antidote as I hope that'll help against the Lord's poisons?
Richard Tue Mar 10 13:41:01 2015
Thanks for the feedback! With regard to your questions...
You would have bought the smoke from the Thieves guild, i think (although there are other ways to get around the guards). They are set up inside a particular Inn of ill repute.
As to the antidote,
My advice is to purchase as many as possible. There are several ways you can get poisoned within the house, especially if you aren't careful, and the consequences of doing so without the antidote are dire.
Claire Tue Mar 10 13:53:13 2015
Hi again Richard,
Thanks for the help.
I know the inn of which you speak, I'll head back there and dig a little deeper. I thought maybe that wearing the nobleman's clothes that I bought in Gold would help to fool them outside the house, but that option wasn't presented to me. Guess I think I'm cleverer than I actually am!
Thanks also about the antidote tips, I'd lke to finish the story by conquering Lord Fenric, though I hope after taking the steps you suggest there aren't any other nasty surprises lurking in his home. :)
Richard Tue Mar 10 14:32:51 2015
You're certainly cleverer than i was about the clothes - i didnt think about using them at that point, although arguably - given the state of alert the house is in - the guards shouldnt be letting anyone through, no matter what they're wearing.
Sugar Sat Mar 21 13:15:07 2015
I have thoroughly enjoyed this well-written and thrilling adventure. Waiting for more!
josh Wed Apr 22 02:26:22 2015
wow, that was a truly awesome experience. I cant wait for the next chapter to the story! I thought the first part was awesome but this, this is something else. I felt so cool leading a hole army against the necromancer, and if I do say so myself I did so very well. Anyway
josh Wed Apr 22 04:47:57 2015
On a side note of this story's well written brilliance, and fantastically played strategic options. Well can anyone tell me when the third part will be released?
jack Wed Jun 17 04:27:56 2015
Stephen Balnave Tue Jul 14 03:56:37 2015
Combat was much more challenging than in the Shadow in the North. I had to replay it multiple times due to unfavorable die rolls. Good story though. The time limit added to the urgency and excitement.
Red Art Tue Sep 1 06:36:06 2015
Truly epic. It's a great feeling to see that your actions have a significant impact in the battle's development. I have really begun to admire your work and this masterpiece gamebook proves how great of an author you are. Thank you Richard Evans.
Loved it when the banner rose from a tower and then when you stabbed the titan with Dawnbreaker. It was LEGENDARY
Smito000 Thu Sep 3 13:25:44 2015
Just completed the yesterday after repeated bashings, great adventure, looking forward to the next one.
Sophia Thu Jul 7 20:43:31 2016
I just played through the first two of the trilogy (which I loved), and I'm wondering if part 3 is out yet.
All I know is I don't have it.
Dean Tue Mar 14 11:32:41 2017
A really brilliant adventure! I can't wait for the final chapter :)
Dean Thu Mar 16 11:07:46 2017
A really brilliant adventure! I can't wait for the final chapter :)
Jorge C Sat Apr 8 16:10:08 2017
great books!! lots of paths to follow and decisions to make but its quite addictive!
Emanuele Mon Jul 17 18:26:59 2017
Really good story, very well written. It is a pity that the third (and final!) installment is not available. Considering the amount of time that has passed with no news, I am a bit discouraged in hoping that the final chapter will be ever available.
Nevertheless, many congratulations to Richard Evans!
Emanuele Wed Jul 26 17:20:35 2017
I am replaying to try kill all five assassins of the Crimson Hand. So far I have only found four of them.
Namely: two in the Alachite district, one in the Bronze and one in the Silver district (in Lord Fenric's mansion).
I have replayed a few times now with no luck. Anyone knows where is the one I am missing? Is there any reward for killing all five of them?