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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Original, solid, but overly challenging adventure
As with all Fighting Fantasies, this is a third-person multi-route adventure gamebook in which the reader takes on the role of a fantasy hero and has to solve puzzles, battle monsters and map routes to finish the book. The almost Buffy-esque storyline involves an evil wizard stealing a demonic book from a monastery in order to raise a powerful demon. The atmosphere is...
Published on 14 Aug. 2006 by ldxar1

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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Spellbreaker (Fighting Fantasy)

Its seems okay

Skooter
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Original, solid, but overly challenging adventure, 14 Aug. 2006
This review is from: Spellbreaker (Fighting Fantasy) (Paperback)
As with all Fighting Fantasies, this is a third-person multi-route adventure gamebook in which the reader takes on the role of a fantasy hero and has to solve puzzles, battle monsters and map routes to finish the book. The almost Buffy-esque storyline involves an evil wizard stealing a demonic book from a monastery in order to raise a powerful demon. The atmosphere is gothic, almost theological, with witches real and accused, hallowed places, saints and martyrs, pilgrims and monks, and some real aspects of medieval life, from bandits to plagues.

Among the later Fighting Fantasy adventures, this book stands out as containing some definite original ideas - the strong use of herblore adds a new twist to the item-gathering aspect of the story. It is genuinely multi-pathed, although there is only one "good" path through and the "wrong" paths soon end in disaster. The broad range of items one needs to acquire to complete it successfully makes for re-readability.

This is also, however, its drawback - the book requires far too much for successful completion. You'll need real-life as well as in-game luck (including surviving a 1 in 2 chance of sudden death), sky-high stats and a seemingly impossible Faith score to complete it. And the need for some of the items only becomes apparent too late, making it frustratingly easy to fall just because you didn't realise you'd need an antipoison, a raven and so on, until it's far too late. A clearer idea of what is needed from the start, would have tipped the adventure from frustrating to enjoyably challenging.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great storytelling and atmosphere, 13 Jan. 2013
This review is from: Spellbreaker (Fighting Fantasy) (Paperback)
One of the highlights of the Fighting Fantasy series. The quality of the writing and storytelling is some of the best to be found in any adventure gamebook. The idea of your character becoming embroiled in a quest because they are partially responsible for its necessity is quite an original take on the usual formula. From then on the story gets better and better as the plot unfolds, developing into a gothic masterpiece of demon summoning and witchcraft. The reader is thrust into scenario after scenario where they are pitted against uncanny and demonic forces. Each of these sub-quests, even the ones not necessary to complete the book, are hugely enjoyable. All bare relevance to the general plot rather than being pointless or annoying side quests. The more you explore the more intriguing the plot becomes.

Each character encountered is fully rounded, developed and believable. The Kurakil may have a typical demon portrayal but the main villain is really Nazek who is multi-dimensional and clearly established in the opening stages. It's a pleasant change to meet the major villain in the `Background' rather than waiting until the climax of the adventure. Other than Mistress Crowfoot, who should have more interaction with the reader, there is little to criticise concerning characterisation. Talpas and Sam Boggart are both quite unique allies who would fit well into `The Chronicles of Narnia' or `Lord of the Rings'.

The range of items and equipment is wide. Many are quite intriguing and are utilised well within the adventure. One of the hardest parts of the book is knowing what to buy with your limited funds. There is more of a need than usual to engage in botany and apothecary, and this gives the book some uniqueness.

There is also a sense of humour that seeps into the narrative. There are several allusions to `Black Adder' and the Pied Piper seems to make an appearance. This amusing undercurrent contrasts well with the general heavy darkness of the story and adds to the enjoyment.

This book is not without its flaws though. These are quite minor, however. The difficulty level of this book is quite high. Mostly this is challenging and thus enjoyable. Occasionally though the adventure can be unnecessarily difficult by having the odds of some of the dice rolls weighted heavily against you. A lot of this is concerned with the inclusion of the FAITH attribute. The tests of FAITH are usually strongly against you and you cannot afford to fail them. To get the Black Grimoire page you require to complete the book you must succeed in a test of FAITH where you only have a one in three chance with the highest FAITH score you can achieve at this stage. There is also a drowning scenario in the latter stages where you can die on a roll of the dice. It is extremely annoying to get so far and died based purely on luck irrespective of your statistics or equipment.
Some of the bigger problems revolve around the jail episode. Firstly it is quite difficult to actually end up in the jail because this involves a combat you can't win or lose but must drag on for a long time. Then escaping the jail becomes far too easy as it relies upon one of the simplest riddles ever (you don't even need to read the riddle if your familiar with the first series of `Black Adder'). Most annoying though is an editorial error as you leave. If you end up on paragraph 83 you should not turn to 132 as the text instructs, but 300. Paragraph 132 is much later in the adventure and turning to it will spoil a later encounter. I assume that this has been corrected in the Wizard re-release.

This is one of the most engrossing and atmospheric books of the FF range. It shows that there was a lot of life left in the series in its latter stages. Although a little tricky for the novice adventurer, this would still serve as an excellent introduction to Fighting Fantasy for a new reader.
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5.0 out of 5 stars great book, 28 Feb. 2013
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anyone that likes fantasy reads this is a great book and if you read it a second or third time the story won't be the same
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars, 18 Feb. 2015
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Spellbreaker (Fighting Fantasy)

Its seems okay

Skooter
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Spellbreaker (Fighting Fantasy)
Spellbreaker (Fighting Fantasy) by Ian Livingstone (Paperback - 24 Jun. 1993)
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