Fighting Fantasy

Fighting Fantasy (FF) novels are a hybrid between a book and a single-player game. You use two six-sided dice, a pencil, an eraser, and I’d advice also using a xerox of the character sheet so you don’t ruin your books. Then you have several numbered sections of the book, most of the time up to 400, and you navigate between them, when you chose to do something. For instance, you start at the 1 section, and at some point they may ask you if you want to turn right (123) or left (222), and if you want to go left, you go to the section 222 of the book, read what happened there, and so forth.

When I was a kid I used to devour those books. My first FF novel was Space Assassin as my taste at the time was more towards science fiction, unlike now, where it’s pretty balanced between that and fantasy.

I bought all of the Portuguese editions through the years, up until number 32. Lately I’ve felt like completing the collection, and last Friday on my way home I found some on a book fair, which I proceeded to buy at a really good price, considering they were new. Now, of the Portuguese novels, which only go up to number 38, I’m only lacking 33, and 34 ( got my hands on 38 recently), which I’m hoping to find on sale somewhere. I’m saying this because it seems that the publisher here in Portugal, Verbo, has stopped publishing them a while ago, and the only available novels left are the ones already printed. No new editions. I’m hoping that at least on this year’s Lisbon book Fair, I’ll get my hands on those that I’m still missing. I’m doubting that the publishers book stand on the Lisbon Book Fair will have any books that aren’t available on the website, since I’m guessing their stock is exactly the same. My guess is I’ll have to get them second hand by unexpectedly finding them on a used bookstore or something.

I’m also going to give a few as gifts to my kid cousin, hoping to start turning him into a geek. If he likes the books, which will be offered along with two blue (his favourite color – I’ve informed myself 😛 ) d6 dice, and some printed out character sheets. Despite already having a few to offer him, I may also get a couple of others if the place I bought mine on still has any left, because I remember seeing a few of the coolest ones there, which he should most definitely own.

I’m considering finishing the ones I remember never having finished, which include The Warlock of the Firetop Mountain because I got lost on his labyrinth every single time. After finishing those, if I still feel like playing more, I might order the books in English that follow the ones I have in Portuguese. I won’t have a very consistent collection, but at least I’ll have all the books if I don’t get sick of them meantime.

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