When I was younger I loved the Fighting Fantasy books, so it was a shame that they were out of print for most of the Noughties. Now reprints of the originals are available along with some new tomes, this one among them. And what a thrill it was that the central theme was werewolves, creatures that have always scared me even though I love them to bits.
In this book a lot of the normal FF rules apply; you use skill, stamina and luck scores to determine how you fare in various situations and in combat with other people or various creatures. Other factors determine how you fare too, and not just possessions you pick up. You can also pick up certain codewords through being in specific situations or gaining facets of knowledge. This can affect what route you take further on through the book. There is also the fact you are carrying the eponymous curse and your Change score determines how lycanthropic you are. How this affects things is quite complex, but pick up the book and you'll see!
Most of the action takes place in a land called Lupravia, which is much like the Transylvannia of Universal and Hammer horror movies, with a fantastical spin on it. There are other werewolves there, along with other were-creatures, vampires, ghosts, mutated versions of various animals and magical creatures. You will certainly have some fun spotting nods to various other stories; The Wolfman, Frankenstein, Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow and The Hound of the Baskervilles. Take particular routes and there are even times you might be tempted to think of Van Helsing, or Metz's Judderman commercial!
Punctuating the text are brilliant illustrations, as always. Some of them are bound to bring shudders - the illustration for paragraph 172 is positively stomach-churning. Going back to references, the illustration for paragraph 442 will give Dr Who fans a laugh.
What's best about this book is that you can complete your quest successfully (as I have) and then play the quest all over again and find a whole new route to take. A must for any gaming or horror nuts.