The Warlock of Firetop Mountain

Game review by
David Chapman, Common Sense Media
The Warlock of Firetop Mountain Game Poster Image
Book-based dungeon adventure entertaining but repetitive.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages

Usual themes of "good vs. evil" while game challenges players to know when to fight, when to avoid a fight.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Players take on roles of fantasy heroes on an adventure to defeat dark forces threatening land while seeking fame, fortune.

Ease of Play

Simple controls, easy to learn, Combat is slightly more complicated, as players are challenged to predict movements, actions of opponents in turn-based battles.

Violence

Players battle animals, monsters, other enemies using a variety of medieval weapons, magic spells. Although battles are frequent, board game style means blood, gore, anything graphic.

Sex
Language
Consumerism

Based on popular Fighting Fantasy book with same name, which blends dice-based role-playing with choose-your-own-adventure style of storytelling.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that The Warlock of Firetop Mountain is a downloadable single-player role-playing adventure game based on the Fighting Fantasy book of the same name. The game is, essentially, a point-and-click board game, with random dice rolls used to help resolve combat against animals, monsters, and other opponents. As such, the game pieces don't exactly bleed, drink, or smoke, and there's no inappropriate content to be found.

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What's it about?

Based on the Fighting Fantasy game book by Steve Jackson and Ian Livingstone, THE WARLOCK OF FIRETOP MOUNTAIN is a virtual board game that puts players in the role of an intrepid adventurer seeking out fame and fortune. When the nearby village tells the tale of a great treasure hidden in Firetop Mountain protected by the dark magic and minions of an evil warlock, that's more than enough to get your attention. Stepping into the mountain caves, players begin a solo quest filled with twists and turns, monsters and magic, and more dice rolls than a Vegas craps table. It'll take the right choices, some skillful strategy, and more than a little luck to navigate the treacherous dungeon, defeat the warlock, and recover the treasure. Will you be the one to finally conquer the Warlock of Firetop Mountain?

Is it any good?

Adventure fans looking for a break from traditional role-playing games will like this title, but the lack of depth and repetitive sequences make this an average dungeon crawler. Most tabletop-style games are usually designed to be played with groups of friends. Even classic pen-and-paper experiences usually have at least one person as the adventurer and one as Game Master. The Warlock of Firetop Mountain, much like the book it's based on, is strictly a solo experience. Imagine a choose-your-own-adventure story with the occasional dice roll tossed in for good measure, and you'll have a pretty good idea of what to expect here. The board game style carries over to combat as well, but not with the same amount of success. The first few fights might be fun as you try to predict where your opponents will move so you can make a preemptive strike, but eventually the back-and-forth movement of the characters gets a bit frustrating, and you're likely to just sit back and place your faith in the dice rolls of a head-to-head clash.

None of this means The Warlock of Firetop Mountain isn't fun. In fact, it's a treat. It genuinely feels like you're playing a tabletop adventure, with new rooms dropping into place like pieces of a 3D labyrinth puzzle. It's a simple style but with a gorgeous and detailed presentation that really sets the mood. The problem is that the game lacks any real longevity. Much like those classic solo adventure books, you only have so many choices. Even though it's an interactive adventure game, its procedurally generated content gets a bit repetitive after a while. After all, there are only so many story pieces, and eventually you'll start seeing events you've already played. Still, despite this lack of replay value, The Warlock of Firetop Mountain is a nice bit of nostalgia that any old school tabletop adventure fan should have a fair amount of fun with.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the evolution of gaming. How have games changed over the years, moving from board games to pen-and-paper experiences to video games? What elements make games entertaining, regardless of format?

  • Talk about single-player vs. multiplayer games. What sorts of gaming experiences are better suited for solo play, and what types of games are better with friends?

Game details

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