- Creature of Havoc
Infobox Fighting Fantasy book 2covers
caption1=The original cover of "Creature of Havoc" illustrated by Ian Miller
caption2=The Wizard cover of "Creature of Havoc" illustrated by Les Edwards
"Creature of Havoc" is a single-player roleplaying
gamebookwritten by Steve Jackson, illustrated by Alan Langford and originally published in 1986 by Puffin Books. It was later republished by Wizard Books in 2002. It forms part of Steve Jackson and Ian Livingstone's Fighting Fantasyseries, and is the last Fighting Fantasy gamebook written by Steve Jackson. It is the 24th in the series in the original Puffin series (ISBN 0-14-032040-7) and 4th in the modern Wizard series (ISBN 1-84046-391-0).
The book has several different endings, but only one truly successful ending. This is also one of the more difficult Fighting Fantasy titles, with a large number of instant death entries as well as ways to make the book unwinnable without actually dying.
The player begins this adventure with no idea who they are or where they are. The player is an unidentified beast and begins the adventure with no concept of language or reason. The player must discover what has happened to them and along the way a greater plot unfolds.
The book (unusually) begins with an extensive background section detailing the recent history of an area of Allansia known as Trolltooth Pass. An evil necromancer named Zharradan Marr has slowly been seizing power in the region by building up wealth and a small army. He is particularly feared as a practitioner of marrangha, a type of black magic that involves the transformation of limbs and organs from one creature to another. Marr learnt this from his mentors in the village of Dree, an evil settlement of
Over the years Marr has built up a dedicated ring of followers: Vallaska Roue, a human; Hannicus, a wizard of neutral alignment; Thugruff, a Half-Troll; and Darramouss, an
undeadhalf-elf. Hannicus gives Marr much information about the area, including the legend of Stittle Woad - an elven village in the Forest of Spiders that supposedly hold three "Vapours" - benevolent spirits which bestow the gifts of reason, languages and elven magic.
Marr, interested in the secrets of elven magic, manages to steal the Vapours - however, he finds that he cannot understand their secrets without finding the village of Stittle Woad. This presents a problem, as the village is hidden high in the forest's treetops by elven magic. A solution presents itself in the form of the "Galleykeep", a flying ship that arrives from the east. Marr uses his troops to capture the flying ship and makes it not only his new headquarters, but a tool to discover the location of Stittle Woad from above.
Little of the background information is relevant to the player at the beginning of the book, for they wake up in a dark corridor to find that they have no memory of who they are. Not only that, but the player is not even human - they take the role of a large, powerful and unintelligent beast.
This results in some difficulty as the player makes his way through the first sections of the book, which are set in Marr's underground dungeons. Because the creature cannot make its own decisions, it is governed by instinct, and die rolls are used to determine decisions rather than the player's own choice. This changes once the player finds the Vapour of Reason, which allows him to make his own choices.
The player proceeds through the dungeon, killing a number of adventurers which (judging from information in the background) are seeking to recover the Vapours. The player soon finds the Vapour of Languages, which allows him to understand what others are saying. He then encounters the wizard Hannicus, who has been imprisoned by Marr for incompetence. Hannicus tells the player how to get past Darramouss, who guards the exit of the dungeon. The player uses this information to kill Darramouss and then escapes the complex into a graveyard.
On the surface, the player is visited by the witch-women of Dree, who send him on a quest to find them Sculliweed root. On the way the player befriends a Half-Orc named Grog, and when Grog is killed by toadmen, takes his knapsack (which contains a mysterious wooden case). The player finds Sculliweed and delivers it to the witch-women, who in return tell him where to find Daga Weaseltongue, an elf who then tells the player how to get on board the Galleykeep (which involves being caught in a trap, many of which are littered around the forest to provide the flying ship with food).
On board the Galleykeep, the player fights past Marr's creatures and confronts the necromancer himself, who is on the other side of a portal to the Underworld. Marr reveals what is inside Grog's wooden case: the Vapour of Elven Magic. He also reveals that the player was originally the Captain of the Galleykeep, and was transformed into a hideous beast using marrangha after Marr captured the ship. Many of the monsters the player killed in Marr's dungeons were former members of the crew, likewise transformed by marrangha.
Marr demands the Vapour, but the player defeats him by destroying the portal. With the necromancer banished from the world of the living, the effects of marrangha wear off, and the player reverts into his previous human self. The book ends with him returning to his position as commander of the Galleykeep. The other ending is that the player is forced by Marr to give him the vapour, and with that the player kills Marr's right hand man to become his second-in-command (although this is unseen epilogue). Marr then uses the vapor to find Stittle Woad and takes over Titan.
This book contains slightly different rules from most Fighting Fantasy gamebooks. A hit to the player in combat does 1 STAMINA point less damage than usual due to the player's tough hide and rolling a double when determining the player's attack strength will instantly kill an enemy. In the Wizard version the Battle rules have been copied and pasted from Firetop Mountain so that the reduced damage in combat is not made clear.
The Wizard version of the book also has the map omitted, as the original version of the book had the map printed on the inside front cover.
List of Fighting Fantasy gamebooks
* cite web
title=Fighting Fantasy Gamebooks on gamebooks.org
* cite web
title=Creature of Havoc on gamebooks.org
* cite web
title=Creature of Havoc on the Internet Archive record of the old fightingfantasy.com site
* cite web
title=Creature of Havoc on the official Fighting Fantasy website
* cite web
title=Creature of Havoc on the Wizard Books website
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