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Blood of the Zombies (Fighting Fantasy) Paperback – 2 Aug 2012

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Product details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Wizard Books (2 Aug 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1848314051
  • ISBN-13: 978-1848314054
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 1.8 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 100,510 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


'As a game ... it's surprisingly swift and exciting, with the hectic, minute-to-minute battling and health management beats of Left 4 Dead, and a real sense of the old-school RPG as you keep neat lists of the things you've collected and maybe draw a map as you go. It's not an easy game if you're going to successfully stop Gingrich Yurr from triggering the apocalypse, but it's filled with clever elements: keys, pas scodes and phone numbers that unlock specific paragraphs, cameos that include Charlie Higson and Tom Watson (he was dead when I found him, honest), references to Lara Croft and The Warlock of Firetop Mountain, and eleventh-hour jokes about valley girls and Pokemon. The text is smart and quietly witty, the choices still make you weigh up your options (and cheat, of course) and the wonderful art, by Kevin Crossley and Greg Staples, hits just the right notes, invoking the lurid horror of old video nasty covers - 9/10' -- Eurogamer 'Absoltuely ideal as a gift for the nines-plus, these are books the keen reader/adventurer will enjoy.' -- Caroline Franklin, n2 Going Out the Arts

About the Author

Ian Livingstone has been a leading pioneer of the UK games industry since 1975 when he co-founded Games Workshop and launched Dungeons & Dragons in Europe. In 1982, with Steve Jackson, he wrote The Warlock of Firetop Mountain, the first of the Fighting Fantasy gamebooks, which went on to sell over 16 million copies in 28 languages. In 1995 he was instrumental in the flotation of Eidos plc where he served as Executive Chairman until 2002. At Eidos he helped to secure and launch many of the company's major franchises, including Lara Croft:Tomb Raider. In 2002 he received the BAFTA Special Award for his outstanding contribution to the interactive entertainment industry and in 2006 he was awarded an OBE for services to the computer games industry. In the Wired 100 list for 2012, Wired magazine ranked him the 16th most influential person in the UK's digital economy.

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Customer Reviews

3.6 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

25 of 32 people found the following review helpful By Paul Teevan on 9 Aug 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
So after a long gap we finally have another new Fighting Fantasy book, this one with a novel premise... in theory. A zombie horror survival fighting fantasy book does sound interesting doesn't it? Moving carefully through the city, scavenging for supplies and trying to avoid unnecessary combat. Sounds fun, right? Sadly that is not this book.
After starting with a superficially unusual premise (your a mythology student on earth, walking the globe (goodness knows where a student would get the money for that....) trying to find real monsters) you find someone captured and trapped in a dungeon by the usual crazed, evil megalomaniac who is trying to raise a zombie army to take over the world (Of course!). You get out of the dungeon and start exploring the castle, raiding every room you can for items, and fighting off zombies you come across. And if that still sounds different to a normal Ian Livingstone book in theory, it sadly isn't in practice. You pass through many right/left corridors (at least unlike the awful Eye of The Dragon you are often hinted at a difference between them, though often you will have to pick blind), go into various rooms, loot it for every item you can (with the usual this item will be used once to get another item and if you miss out on one of many items, you are going to die somewhere down the line), and fight off any zombies you come across. And you do this again, and again and again.
It might have been interesting if you had to play the risk/reward aspect, trying to avoid as many zombies as you can, while getting as many useful items as you can, but you HAVE TO kill EVERY Zombie in the book or you will get a bad ending at the end of it. If you miss even one, he'll find where you live and zombify everyone.
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8 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 6 Aug 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this out of nostalgia - I'm old enough to have played the original FF books when they first came out. This is just as good as I remember, and even has a few features that have improved. Firstly you don't need dice - the pages have random pictures of two dice at the bottom of each page so you can just riffle the pages to get the dice rolls you need. Secondly, zombie combat is simple, meaning less note taking.

The plot is great and the action is super - you wake up chained up in a Zombie infested castle, needing to escape and kill as many zombies as you can.

BIG BIG thing though - there are spaces on the adventure sheet to record your battles, and particularly the total quantity of zombies you have killed. Don't ignore these...you need to count your zombie kills and if you don't do it, you're going to be frustrated come the end of the book. For this reason i gave it four rather than five stars....

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9 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Alaran on 22 Aug 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Ian Livingstone was always the master at the plot where the hero must infiltrate the dungeon/fortress/castle, etc and slay the evil wizard/sorcerer/demon, etc. I was never much impressed with his efforts in the past to stray from this . Thus when I heard that his thirty anniversary book was to involve zombies in the modern day I was sadly dissappointed (what! no Allansia, Old World or Khul). Despite my initial prejudice, and obvious flaws with the book, I found, to my pleasant surprise that I quite enjoyed it.

The main problem with Blood of the Zombies is that it doesn't really feel like a Fighting Fantasy adventure, despite a few fan indulgent references that are a little amusing. This is mainly because Ian Livingstone has dropped one of the greatest of strengths of FF - the fantasic combat system that made FF stand out from its competitors in the 1980s. Instead we are offered a very basic system based entirely on the roll of the dice (I was unfortunate enough to roll two consecutive double ones and went instantly from perfectly healthy to dead). This is the only thing that makes the adventure difficult. It is certainly not challenging on the brain and the path through the castle is relatively simple (and a little dull). Dice rolls aside, you should be able to complete this relatively easily.

The book also feels more like a computer game adaption (most likely due to Ian Livingstone's later career) than the other FF adventures. It also has far too much unnecessary equipment which is a pain to keep writing down every attempt at completing the book.

Despite the above criticisms though this book is somehow quite enjoyable and a welcome addition to the series of FF adventures. Its much better than Eye of the Dragon (Ian's previous and quite shoddy effort a few years ago) and is quite acceptable as an anniversary special and an effort at trying something a little different.
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7 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Cuvilly Frédéric on 19 Aug 2012
Format: Paperback
after so much waiting, it's a hudge deception that book. the adventure sheet filled with a single statistic ...
The castle is described so terrible, the heros is very quickly lost in the endless corridors which straight left or right has no end. In addition it is an OTP (One true path : if you miss a zombie is finished)
More like the Eye of the Dragon (Also one of the worst book) the hero is stuck with a real wheelbarrow objects much only serves to complete the worksheet adventure.

Book to forget. I return to my Howl of the Werewolf, there is a very good book! (Jonathan Green is a the top !)

Where is the Livingston of the marvelous "Island of the Lizard King" or "Deathtrap Dungeon" ? Maybe lost forever ... :(
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