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Appointment With F.E.A.R. by Steve Jackson
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English (2)  French (1)  All languages (3)
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I must admit that I have yet to complete this gamebook namely due to it being quite difficult - and that is an understatement. Remember Starship Traveller where you had to locate some co-ordinates and a time to be able to complete the adventure? Well Steve Jackson has not only taken this to a new level in this particular book but also regularly uses it which makes the book itself very difficult to complete. As such I have put this book on top of Seas of Blood with the intention of returning to it in the future to see if I can actually complete it.
While attempting to find a solution (without success mind you) I encountered some reviews of this book, and one of the reviews that stuck out in my mind when the writer indicated that as a teenager he preferred Ian Livingstone's books to Steve Jackson's namely because Livingstone set all of his books (with the exception of Freeway Fighter) in the fantasy world of Allansia, however as the reviewer grew older he became more impressed by Steve Jackson's works namely because he would experiment with the style and try new things and also write some very challenging stories. This I am inclined to agree with.
Appointment with F.E.A.R. is different from the rest of the Fighting Fantasy series in that you are a super hero (the Silver Crusader) with super powers and you must locate a meeting of super villains and put an end to their wicked scheme (I won't go into a tangent about the origin of the word villain, except to mention that it came from the word for peasant). There are multiple ways of completing this book which coincide with the four super powers that you can select. I selected 'gadget man' (a name I gave him myself) though I seemed to hardly use any of the gadgets during the adventure. Each of the superpowers offers a different way to complete the adventure, and also gives you different clues at the beginning.
Numbers play a very significant role in this book, which is not surprising since the numbers that you collect need to be used to determine at times where to turn to the new paragraph. This makes cheating very hard indeed (because in the other gamebooks, it simply asks you 'do you have this, if so, turn to'. That means that even if I didn't find the object (such as the Sandworm Tooth in Temple of Terror) I can try to argue to myself how I did end up with it, and then turn to the paragraph (though cheating at a gamebook is like cheating at solitare, pointless). However, one of the problems is that sometimes it is not clear where you are supposed to use the clue that you have been given, and as such it is easy to get lost (apparently a later book is much worse for this).
The other problem I had with the book is that one thing you need to know to get to the super villain meeting is the current date. I found it very annoying that you do not know what the date is, and I even had a quick look at the beginning paragraphs and simply could not work out what the date was, which is absurd because people generally know that date off hand (unless, of course, you have been travelling around in the TARDIS). However, other than that criticism, this is actually a very good gamebook, and would not be surprised if the quality of the books begin to decrease after this. Oh well, I still have a lot in my collection so we will see soon enough. ( )
  David.Alfred.Sarkies | Feb 28, 2014 |
Superhero and '80s references abound in this fresh take on the FF formula. You search for clues, not items, choosing from four different super powers, each of which requires a different solution. Clever and entertaining. ( )
  Moomin_Mama | Feb 7, 2010 |
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Choose-your-own fantasy adventure in you are a super-hero protecting Titan City from a host of super-villains.

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