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on 20 May 2014
This serves as a prequel to the eighties gamebook series ‘Way of the Tiger’. I’m not sure exactly how it has come about that a prequel has been produced almost three decades later, other than some rumours last year that if the series was to be reprinted and proved popular enough that there would also be a new prequel and sequel to the series. Surprisingly it is not written by the original authors, although it is certainly heavily influenced by them. The author has made a good effort at duplicating the style and content of the originals. He has focussed far more on the oriental aspects of ‘The Way of the Tiger’ series, however, than on the more fantasy elements. Thankfully the same combat system has also been kept and the author makes good use of it.

Set after the events of the death of Naijishi at the hands of Yeamon, ‘Ninja’ involves the reader competing against fellow rivals in a dangerous game that will allow the victors to enter the final trail to ascend to the position of a Grandmaster. This leads into first book (and, indeed, sets it up) but it is clever at not contradicting anything or leaving the adventurer with items or advantages that can be carried over that weren’t already available at the start of ‘Avenger’. A nice touch is that the reader starts with only three inner force points and that the trials overcome in this adventure increase it to the original five points.

Concentrating on the Isle of Plenty by setting the whole adventure there allows more exploration of this area than in the originals where the Isle often served as more a stopping off point on route. It also makes the adventure feel like it takes place in a feudal Japan style scenario.

There is a good variety of characters to encounter and travel/interact with. Some of these are you fellow competitors and your rivalry can be quite amicable, especially when events start to go awry. There is a lot of opportunity to play alongside different companions. Some characters that appear are from the original series and it is pretty likely that the sorcerer that plagues you and your comrades is meant to be Manse the Deathmage from ‘Avenger’.

There is some dodgy printing, particularly with the layout of the artwork. Reference numbers also occasionally appear at the bottom of the page with the text on the next page. ‘The Way of the Tiger’ title on the front cover should also have matched the text design/font featured on the rereleased series. But there is plenty to do and a reasonable variety of paths and sub-missions to opt for. This, and the choices of travelling companions, gives the adventure plenty of re-playability, more so than the original books.
Most importantly, the spirit of this prequel is close enough to that of the originals that it feels like it could have been the first part of the series.
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on 20 April 2014
I loved these gamebooks when they came out and was pleased to see that a prequel and a number 7 had been done as well as re-issues of the original 6 in the series. Knowing that the original authors had not written the prequel it was with some trepidation that I purchased this but having read and played it I was pleasantly surprised. It used exactly the same rules as the originals and included characters from the originals and was, most importantly, written in the same style and was faithful to the original authors' vision. Though the illustrations were good it is a pity they could not have been rendered by the original artist Bob Harvey who, I understand is untraceable, or at least in the same style as this is the only let down for me as the original illustrations were part and parcel of the atmosphere and enjoyment of the series. The adventure itself is very good though somewhat restricted by not being set in the mainlands of Orb and thus encounters were limited to mainly oriental/Japanese themes and less varied than the originals. But overall David Walters has done an excellent job and is to be commended for creating such a good prequel and revising the world and gameplay of the Way of the Tiger! A must for anyone who liked the original Mark Smith and Jamir Thomson series.
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on 10 May 2014
This was the first Kickstarter I have ever paid towards and am very excited to get book 67 in a few months and although I was sent the PDF of this Prequel always knew I would have to buy it as a physical copy when I could.
It is a real shame the real book is literally just a printed PDF with the Hyperlinks still in pace, badly printed pictures and countless grammatical and punctuation errors all wrapped in a very low quality binding but simply having the book is worth that.
The story/game is not on par with the earlier books but still an enjoyable book nonetheless.
As a standalone book for non-fans I would give it a 2/5 for all the mistakes and lack of quality but as a fan I have to give it 4/5.
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on 27 February 2014
An excellent game book, a fine prequel to the classic Way of the Tiger series. Walters has captured the flavour of the world and presents a challenging and rich storyline here. The battles are tough and the moral choices feel like they matter.
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on 23 August 2014
It really sets up the WOTT series. I hope the cliff hanger in the final book is resolved soon! Great to see these back. Now I want Falcon.
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on 28 July 2014
I had a free weekend to myself and I've just spent it reliving my youth. This was a brilliant prequel to the original series. I've heard that there is meant to be a seventh book as well. Can't wait.....
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on 22 December 2015
Prequel in the Way of the Tiger series, and a strong effort by David Walters.
It doesn't feel as close to thirty years have passed, and the writing is just as good as the original books.
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on 9 February 2016
Wow. This arrived yesterday. After a long day at work and then with family I sat down to spend a few minutes on it. Hour and a quarter later I told my wife I'd be in bed in ten minutes. Took another hour and a half to finish my first going through, albeit I play slow. If you liked Way of the tiger you'll love this. You make real choices which have real effects and the game caters for them. I will be replaying this book but for now I'm trying to play through to book 7.
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on 26 May 2014
Really enjoyable, captured the feel of the originals. Well done! Am now going to replay all the others in anticipation of book 7!
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on 15 March 2016
Great new addition
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