JUST FOR FUN
CLUES, CLUES, AND MORE CLUES
Nothing is more maddening than spending a small fortune on a game with great artwork and then getting so stuck that you never get to see half of the graphics. It's incredibly frustrating to be breezing through an adventure game, enjoying the backdrops and character interaction, when suddenly you come to a screeching halt, held up by a seemingly unsolvable puzzle.
This month I'm passing along a batch of adventure-game clues to get you past those roadblocks. For people who don't like quests, I rounded up a few tips for some strategy and action games.
Conquests of Camelot. This game poses more riddles than the Mad Hatter. The program randomly selects five riddles. Among the toughest are Always hungry (the answer is fire), cannot be seen (wind), life measured in hours (candle), three lives have I (water), until I'm measured (time), bright as diamonds (sea), and weight in my belly (boat). Save the game before and after each riddle; if you're asked one you can't answer, restore and hope to get a different one.
Nuclear War. The trick is to make sure you never have more than one nation attacking you. Pick one enemy when it's weak, and avoid getting the others mad at you so they'll fight each other. It's vital to be able to predict what a leader will do when you attack someone else, not just when you attack him. The better you understand the character types, the easier this becomes (reread pages 7 and 9 of the manual). Warmongers like Raygun will like you if you build weapons and frown at them, while Pacifists are the opposite. (Gorby and Tricky Dick are liars; the higher their numbers, the more they really hate you.) The easiest setup would be a game against Thatcher, Raygun, Mao, and Ghanji, in which you should build weapons and smile at everyone but the warmongers. Only Ghanji will dislike you, and he'll be your sole foe for a while.
Future Wars. To get past the wolf guarding the monastery, fill the plastic bag with water from the lake, save the game, and toss the bag on the wolf.
Might and Magic II. A Hireling with level 9 spells is found at D-3, 1, and 14 and shows up at the Sandsobar Inn after he's been released. Use him solely for Duplication and other spells right at the Inn (but remember he costs 50,000 a day!). Listen to rumors and tip the bartender at each tavern on days 30 and 180.
Pirates. This is an easy game, but some people don't know what to do in the Treasure Fleet scenario. Stay outside the town it's supposed to be at, and the boats will come by. Attack them one by one to make a lot of money.
King's Quest IV. To enter the Whale, go to the ocean near the lot after you've been to the lot's castle. To exit the whale, go by his nebula and use the peacock feather to make him sneeze. Then save the game, start at the left end of his tongue, and walk diagonally to the end.
Code-Name ICEMAN. Against the destroyer, keep silent running on, active sonar off, and your speed no greater than five knots. Dive to 700 feet. After the white line reaches center screen, target and fire all Harpoons. When the destroyer sinks, use decoys on the remaining torpedoes. Against the sub, go to 2,300 feet, turn off the engines, and wait till it leaves.
Forget the gambling game. When you reach the harbor, swim west and you'll find another bottle. But don't swim back the way you came. Instead, enter the caves to the west (the under-water maze is easy to map) to return to the harbor.
Dragon Wars. This character-development trick worked with the original version and should work on the Amiga. Round up three nonplayer characters for the party before doing this so everyone can take advantage of it. Select the Start New Game option. Your existing characters will keep all skills, spells and so on, but they will lose all gold and items. Take them to the Arena, get the free weapons, and then flee. At the statue of Irkalla, leave an item till she's pleased. Enter the Apsu Waters to reach the Magan Underworld; then go west along the edge of the lake till you hit a wall.
Follow it west and north to a door. Kick through two doors and go one space forward. Go north into the canyon and you'll get five free skill points. Save the game right here. Reboot and start a new game. Your characters will have the free skill points to spend, and you can repeat the sequence until the party is incredibly powerful.
Champions of Krynn. You'll need a knight in the party to pass the Test of Fear in the Knight's Tomb. Journal Entry 13 is Outpost 3; 23 is the entrance area of Gargath Keep; 45 is Jekel; 72 is Gargath Keep's Tower.
Character Editors. Sometimes clues aren't enough. If your party keeps getting wasted by dragons and you don't have a month to spend on character development, you can use a character-editor program to change your party's attributes, possessions, spells and the like. You can get them for $19.95 each from Gosselin Computer Consultants (313-229-2453) for the adventure games Bard's Tale II, Ultima III and IV, Curse of the Azure Bonds, and Keef the Thief.