Archive for the ‘Gamebooks’ Category

Z-Man announces Choose Your Own Adventure co-op game

Saturday, April 14th, 2018

Choose Your Own Adventure GameWith board games becoming more story-driven, it makes sense for game publishers to look toward classic adventure stories for design inspiration. It makes even more sense to design a game around the Choose Your Own Adventure books – stories that invented the “gamebook” and captured the imagination of a generation of kids. Z-Man Games has got you covered with Choose Your Own Adventure: House of Danger, a cooperative board game based on the 1982 book (which was popular enough to be released in seven languages). Due to hit shelves in August 2018, 1–8 players will explore the aforementioned House together as psychic investigators, choosing their adventure path through story cards, gathering item cards, and hunting for clues. From Z-Man’s description:

Do you follow the noise you just heard? Do you venture down the dark cavern? It’s up to you to decide! Investigate the many narrative branches in each of the five exciting chapters, discovering hours of play and thousands of options. Face deadly challenges to find clues or increase your psychic skills. […] As you explore the mysteries of the House of Danger, new clues will guide your investigation, illuminating new paths or equipping you with useful items.

From the Z-Man announcement, the game promises skill development and item usage, two features the original books often struggled to emulate. If Choose Your Own Adventure: House of Danger is well received by gamers this fall, we could certainly see follow-up titles – after all, the CYOA book series boasts over 180 titles to play through. House of Danger will sell for $24.99.

Interactive fiction conference streaming June 9th

Sunday, June 8th, 2014

Choose Your Own AdventureSo, remember Choose Your Own Adventure books, the Fighting Fantasy and Lone Wolf gamebooks, and other solo-adventure enabling products? Those are interactive fiction. We like to bring them up from time to time because they were formative influences on our gaming tastes long ago, and they still provide a great source of inspiration and enjoyment. If you long to revisit the days of exploring an authors world in a more immersive way, of following literary versions of the IF/THEN/ELSE command to their destinations, you should check out VuPop 2 – An Academic Conference Where YOU are the Hero: Interactive Fiction in Print and Online. Organized by our longtime resident gamebook expert Demian Katz (who also runs, the event promises several informative talks on the genre. Best of all, if you can’t make it out to Villanova University in Villanova, PA this Monday (tomorrow), the conference will be streamed online. So skip work, wake up early and get interactively fictional to start your week off right.

2011 Windhammer Prize Voting Begins

Thursday, September 15th, 2011

The entries in the 2011 Windhammer Prize for Short Gamebook Fiction have been made public, and voting is open until October 30th. If you’re a fan of interactive fiction and want to reap the fruits of this year’s competition, just visit this page. As the competition page so eloquently puts it, “within these entries can be found humour and madness, domestic terrorism and desperate stands, and the dangers that can be found in both inner and outer space.”

Fabled Lands back in print

Wednesday, December 1st, 2010

The Fabled Lands series is one of the most ambitious gamebook projects ever attempted: a huge world which can be explored in a totally non-linear fashion, with each book representing a different region full of adventure and hazard. The tragedy of the series is that it never sold well enough for all of the volumes to be completed, and many adventurers have been roaming the world of the first six books aimlessly since the 1990’s, hoping that someday they could reach the distant lands of books 7 through 12. Just when it seemed all hope was lost, the books have been revived both as an iPod/iPad app and as new print editions. If these reissues sell well enough, the series may finally be completed. If you’ve never experienced the books, now is the perfect time to get involved. If you’re a fan from ages back, you can return to your old stomping grounds or share the adventure with your friends and family. Either way, buy some books and help complete a fascinating unfinished piece of gamebook history!

Voting begins in Windhammer Prize gamebook competition

Thursday, September 16th, 2010

The third year of the Windhammer Prize competition is now underway. Five short gamebooks are available for free download, and you can vote to determine which author wins the cash prize! If you’re a fan of solo adventures, take the time to check it out here. If you’re really ambitious, perhaps you’ll be inspired to start planning an entry for next year’s competition!

Windhammer Gamebook Competition Entering Third Year

Friday, March 5th, 2010

In case you missed out on the first two years, the third annual Windhammer Prize is posting its rules and schedule early to allow plenty of time for writing and judging original gamebooks. While this hasn’t quite reached the scale of the computer-based Interactive Fiction Competition, it’s a similar opportunity to be creative in a medium with a lot of potential, and I hope it keeps growing. Do your part and check it out! Oh, and did I mention the cash prize?

OgreCave’s Christmas Gift Guide 2009, part 3

Sunday, December 13th, 2009

If you plan to give gifts this holiday season – or better yet, receive them – you’ve surely been perusing local stores and forming a list. The Cave dwellers have done the same, in the third section of our OgreCave Christmas Gift Guide 2009. This portion, the Twelve Boxes for Christmas, focuses on board games, in the hope of guiding some of your big-ticket expenses toward enjoyable gaming choices.

All that remains is our traditionally last-minute PDF/downloadable product list. We’ll be sure to drop it down your chimney when you’re least expecting it. … No, that’s not a euphemism for anything! Sheesh!

OgreCave’s Christmas Gift Guide 2009, part 2

Friday, December 11th, 2009

Another weekend of holiday shopping is here, and you’ve probably formed some ideas of the larger-cost items you’ll be picking up (or requesting from others). In case your mind’s not quite made up yet, the OgreCave Christmas Gift Guide 2009 continues with its second section, Twelve Days of Roleplaying. This list of gift suggestions is entirely RPG related, and the Cave dwellers have chosen a range of roleplaying goodies that would make great gifts.

Our board game list will be up shortly (work and sickness have caused delays), followed by our traditionally last-minute downloadable product list. So listen closely each night – those bells might be a jolly Ogre… or more likely, an Ogre stepping some other jolly critter.

Lone Wolf gamebooks to become feature film

Saturday, July 25th, 2009 reports that Convergence Entertainment has secured the rights for a live action Lone Wolf feature film. Joe Dever’s classic fantasy gamebook series has already made the transition to full roleplaying game through Mongoose Publishing, but the leap to the movies is a big step. Convergence also secured the rights to produce a Gungrave film, based on the anime series which has already spawned two PlayStation games. According to the story, Convergence plans each film to have “budgets in the $30 million-$35 million range”. If the project comes to fruition, this could be interesting – or another good idea mangled by Hollywood. We’ll see.

OgreCave reviews – Dragon Warriors & Citadel of the Corruptor

Wednesday, June 10th, 2009

A pair of lovely new reviews have just gone up in our RPG section. First, Demian has become acquainted with the new edition of Dragon Warriors from Magnum Opus Press, and he clears up why the RPG used to be mistaken for a gamebook. Then Gerald joins our illustrious (dubious?) Cave-dwelling crew with his review of Dungeon Crawl Classics #61: Citadel of the Corruptor from Goodman Games. Have a look at these write-ups, or browse through our review index for much more.

State of the Mongoose 2008 report posted

Monday, December 1st, 2008

Still a significant publisher in tabletop gaming, Mongoose Publishing has just given its fans a status update in the form of its annual State of the Mongoose report (also copied below). Points of interest include plans for Hammers Slammers, a full color Traveller-powered game based on David Drake’s classic sci-fi series; a 25th Anniversary edition of Paranoia; the end of the Babylon 5 line and license; new supplements for Wraith Recon; a multiplayer Lone Wolf gamebook; and plenty more. Add in an overview of what Mongoose went through in its (ultimately failed) attempt to set up its own printing facility, and I’d say the current state of the Mongoose is “surly and determined”.

Voting begins in new gamebook competition

Sunday, November 16th, 2008

This year, the home of the free online Chronicles of Arborell gamebooks is hosting a competition to encourage new authors. All the entries are in, and readers are now encouraged to take a look and vote for their favorites. The adventures begin here. Take a look, put in your votes, and think about contributing if this rolls around again next year. I’d love to see gamebooks get their own competition as large and interesting as the computer-based Interactive Fiction Competition, which is also in the voting stage at the moment.

Best Choose Your Own Adventure list at AOL

Friday, November 14th, 2008

It isn’t often that we link to an AOL feature article, but their list of the top 20 Choose Your Own Adventure gamebooks is somewhat entertaining. We lend even more credence to the list due to the author thanking, a site created and run by OgreCave’s longtime staff member and gamebook specialist, Demian Katz. Good to know some AOL writers recognize quality when they see it.

State of the Mongoose ’07: aggressive and hungry

Wednesday, November 28th, 2007

For everyone’s safety, we try to keep tabs on any snake-eating mammals lurking nearby, and come to grips with what Mongoose Publishing plans to unleash on gamers in the year ahead. The traditional State of the Mongoose address was posted today, this time as a temporary forum, and so far, we’ve learned the following: (more…)

Magnamund tourist season nearly open again

Wednesday, May 30th, 2007

As promised last year, the Lone Wolf gamebooks, a popular entry point into roleplaying for many nostalgic gamers, are returning this September thanks to Mongoose Publishing. Original series author Joe Dever has expanded and updated the 28 original books, which Mongoose will release in both paperback and hardbound collector’s editions (now you can choose not just your adventure path, but your level of buy-in). The the fabled, yet-unwritten final four gamebooks in the series are finally due as part of the series’ return, as are Lone Wolf novels. The Darklords start things off with their strike on the Kai Monastery when Lone Wolf 1: Flight From the Dark – Collector’s Ed hits at the end of July for $19.95.